Often when looking at an illness or a “dis-ease”, we go on an extensive search for “the thing”. The Thing being what we think is the cause of the dis-ease. We often think of this in terms of a microbe or a bacteria. Our aim is to find it and get it out of the body usually by killing it. This is “germ kill” way of thinking and it is really what allopathic medicine is based around.
While it may hold up in the case of simple acute conditions, it pretty much completely fails at any chronic conditions. It is incredibly short sighted. It doesn't take into consideration the idea that patterns exist. When the allopathic field happens to touch on the idea of patterns, it is often looking at them isolated to whatever “body” of self the issue seems to reside in. In other words, if someone is experiencing a chronic physical condition that has to do with digestion, the explorations of patterns tend to remain in that physical field, touching on diet, nutrition, function of the digestive system, etc, and only brings in other body systems when they seem to be experiencing symptoms that may be connected. Rarely, if ever, does it touch on the other bodies of self as being part of the patterns. This leads to a continual fragmented way of viewing health and it is incredibly unfortunate. Exploring the idea of chronic conditions through the lens of patterns can bring in a wealth of information that can be key in shifting patterns and creating a new balance.
So that sounds pretty big, right? My concept of patterns.
Well, it is and it isn’t.
It can seem big and overwhelming when we first start looking at it, especially if our approach to health has been more of the allopathic mode, - which for the most part, if you were born and raised Western culture, especially in the United States, it’s probably how you were conditioned. When we start to expand our perspective to include ALL of what it is to be human, it becomes much less overwhelming. The more we include ALL of self in our perspective, the more the idea of patterns becomes commonplace.
So how do you begin to look at patterns?
First, we slow down. We begin to invite the perspective of viewing ourselves as connected to ALL of everything. We begin to understand that we are connected not really not separate from everything else that exists or has ever existed.
NOW that is a HUGE lens to view life through, so for starters, we can begin to open our perspective to two things…..cellular memory and that we are more than a physical body.
If this seems overwhelming, I’ll remind you are already doing this - seeing the patterns. Maybe not the whole pattern. Maybe not outside of the physical body patterns. But I can almost guarantee that you are doing some form of pattern observation and inquiry.
I’ll share an example:
Let’s say you have a stomach ache. The obvious go to is, “What did I eat that upset my stomach?” We can usually reveal a few things. THAT is a small piece of a bigger pattern.
Most of us are doing at least that much when something physical comes up.
Now what we can do is expand that to invite in more space for investigating and we find that things start to open up and more pieces come flowing in and we start to see the picture of the pattern emerging. It’s a lot like a puzzle or a thread. I always think of things as threads woven into a giant tapestry that represents US……which is part of an even bigger tapestry of ALL.
When you look a tapestry it is made up of many threads of all different colors. Upon closer examination we can see how those threads weave in and out of each other. We can see that some are done in one type of stitch, some in another. Some have a knot, some do not have a knot (HAHA Say that 3 times fast!) If we look even closer, we can see that what might look like one thread of embroidery floss, is actually many smaller threads twisted together. If we really want to dive into the tapestry rabbit hole, we can ponder on how the individual threads were created, died, spun…how the cotton may have been grown that the thread came from…where it was grown….when it was grown….what type of condition the soil it was grown is was…..what was the harvesting day like…..if you have wool thread you can ponder on the sheep from which the wool came…..where did they live…what conditions did they live in……who took care of them….what did they eat……how long did they live…..were they healthy….were they happy………and so on……………
It can get very very complex and the more we explore, the more things are revealed and more of the pattern comes into clarity. What is fascinating is the more that all of these little bits and pieces come into clarity, the less complex things actually become.
I mention all of this not to overwhelm you, but to point out that patterns can be incredibly detailed…….a stomach ache is not just a stomach ache……..it is part of a much bigger picture and history with so many little aspects to it.
The cool thing is that we don’t need to know every little aspect to shift things. Often a little bit of exploration can reveal a lot. AND the more you become familiar with looking at patterns, the more they start to become the lens through which you view all and everything. You will find that you do not have to trace everything back in such detail down those temporal lines…..as you gain familiarity and confidence you can often just ask and answers will step forward.What happens then is that things don’t seem as mysterious or confusing. They become much more approachable and less overwhelming.
It really is looking at all of the little parts and pieces that came together to reach a certain point - a choice point that was speaking loud enough to get your attention. And it often has to speak loud. Humans are silly and we seldom pay attention to the feather or the whisper…..we need to be hit over the head with the sledgehammer and be screamed at by our bodies in order to slow down and put in the work to shift things.
AND…..beginning to see patterns will help you to shift that.
The example I used of a stomach ache….when looked at more closely, may reveal a difficulty in the body’s ability to process gluten. A stomach ache tends to happen whenever gluten is consumed. So don’t consume gluten, right? Well that seems like an easy fix…..and well….humans….we seldom follow that. So we look a little deeper down that temporal line……..when did i first notice that gluten bothered me? What was going on in my life at that time? What was different? What had changed?
I always recommend avoiding the question of why? “Why do i keep eating gluten when I know it makes me feel crappy?” What we have done is just thrown a whole bunch of shame in there which is going to spiral off in sorts of directions that throw us into mental body and story. This really isn’t helpful. While we are using a bit of mental body to THINK back over the temporal lines, we really want to get more familiar with FEELING back over the temporal lines. Asking “What was I feeling when I choose to eat gluten that time?” is going to be a much more helpful question that will bring in information that we can then add to our investigation.(It is also going to give us some clues to the emotions attached to our choices of nourishment.) Each answer that comes forward from your “WHAT?” will likely open up another question……..to go further down that line, which you will find starts to go back in time, and will eventually land somewhere in early childhood. (Fascinating, right?!). What we are doing here is tapping into cellular memory. Your body, the cells that make it up, hold memory of everything that you have ever experienced since you were first starting to be created….and if we want to really go down that rabbit hole, we were actually the egg that was in our mother’s ovaries, when our grandmother was pregnant with her……(WHAT?!)
But we will keep it simple for now!
As we travel down that temporal line being fueled by our curiosity and our “Whats”,......we will find ourselves reaching different choice points, which are often places of that lightbulb type of luminous revelations of information…..the “AH-HA moments”. At each AH-HA moment there seems to be both a shift and an opening to go deeper down that pattern rabbit hole.
And perhaps Ah-HA is not the best word to use…….because that suggests this feeling of joy and happiness with harps and light from above shining down. That sometimes is the feeling. Other times is brings about feelings that are less delightful………often it can bring up shame or guilt…which sends us right back into WHY…….”Why did I do that?”.....and Story….”I should have known better.”.....and Victim “I really suck.”...........which is ALSO part of our patterns! Then we get to explore those.
See, its really big…and never ending…….AND it is a path that can lead to true and lasting changes through new choices. It’s really the only thing that ever does. This is at the core of my work, of my life……..and it is through my ability and skill to see patterns, that I can help others bring theirs to light, and bring about greater wellness.
I have just shared a little bit of a closer look with starting to look at Patterns. We will go into greater depth this month in both The Parlor and The Auditoria.
I will share more about Patterns, through examples (its often easier to use examples and share case studies), and through some offerings for self inquiry and exploration so that you may be able to begin to bring some clarity to some of you own patterns.
I promise that it is not as overwhelming as it might seem and it IS approachable. It just takes curiosity and the willingness to follow it.