As I look back on 2017 I can see that my theme has been all about overcoming my need to people please. I have been forced into situations that were difficult, painful, and downright ugly. From the Daily Mirror article and nearly 700 negative comments toward me to a disgruntled retreatee (who read the bio of the retreat incorrectly and attended a retreat that she mistook for a different one) who recently left a slamming and personal attack on a public online review site, and everything else in between. It has been a year to get as uncomfortable as possible so that a spiritual surge can take place, and I now walk a very different path to where I was at the beginning of this year.
My people pleasing can be traced back to as long as I can remember,
And it is exhausting
My pattern is always to do anything in my power to make the situation right
I don’t want to hurt anyones feelings
I don’t want to cause a scene
If I can avoid confrontation I will
I’ll apologise even if it’s not my fault
In fact I’ll do anything to make it ok
What am I afraid of
Why do I have this fundamental desire to keep the peace
Why do I put the other before my own needs
Why do I need everything to be OK, even when it’s not
I’ve written about this recently as many in the QS community are also going through something similar, and we have been supporting each other in this way. That is what community is about.
The year has ended with one of my teachers, Bentinho Massaro, being in the middle of what I can only call a sh1tstorm. An article has been written slamming him as a person and teacher, and it has reached a huge audience. There is a backlash of hate towards him to the extent that he has received death threats and has had to leave his home. Online there is a split; those that think he is a narcissistic cult leader, and his remaining students.
I began to study his teachings seriously a year ago, and have attended two seven day retreats of his via livestream, with them having a deep and transformative effect on everything in my life. I also attended a day workshop with him on a rare visit of his to London (he lives in the US), and have booked and paid to do an in person retreat with him in 2018.
I have invested in him and his teachings
And I have been very interested in the developments of the past month
It is like I have been watching the theme of my own year being dramatically played out in technicolour through my teacher. The difficulties I have experienced, however, pale into comparison to what this human is going through, yet I see the relevance to my own story and know that I have been shown a significant and necessary lesson. I have learnt a great deal in the past month from him; how he has dealt with angry and untrue accusations (the original article took his teachings totally out of context), and in how he has responded to the author (nothing has been thrown back at her, and he hasn’t responded to her accusations).
What Bentinho has done, and teaches us all to do through his own actions, is stay aligned with truth, see the learning in the situation, and continually redefine yourself; for nothing ever stays the same. He has now moved home because of this, changed the way he works (thankfully the 2018 retreat I am booked on to is still going ahead, yippee!!) to mainly online, stopped his weekly meetings, and become even more signed up with his purpose.
I for one am inspired
I have learnt a lot this past month
And he has written a very powerful blog, ‘The ‘Ripping Apart’ of The Collective into Parallel Realities’ talking about how timelines are shifting and humanity is breaking off into separate realities; meaning that we are not going to all see a situation in the same way. The example he gives is that we have all been at the train station waiting for OUR train (authentic truth) to show itself, and that the time has NOW come to board our train. But, we are boarding different trains which are moving in opposite directions, meaning that for many of us we are being torn away from all that we have known.
And, the further away from each other that the different trains travel the less relevance they have for us.
I can see this happening in the QS community everyday;
Individuals waking up to their own individual truth and realising that great changes need to take place in their situation. Many change relationships, jobs, homes, countries. Many train as yoga teachers, meditation teachers, change careers, end friendships and go in a totally new direction.
“Few know how to truly navigate this massive ripping apart of realities into separate (parallel) ones in a harmonious way. An inner surrender and trust is crucial. And meditation. Please sit your butt down regularly and become silent and clear…”
This community is doing just that
We are learning the discipline of sitting our butts on our cushions
We are surrendering to self and beginning to trust our truth
We are on the right train
It has already begun moving
We are ahead, in the advance party, already
We understand this concept of going against the tide of mediocrity
Just take Christmas as the example; I for one was near enough the only sober person at my extended families party.
It is not ‘normal’ to be sober at Christmas
It is not ‘normal’ to eat well at Christmas
It is not ‘normal’ to be sitting here on New Years Eve without feeling bloated, fat and overindulged
This community already knows how to go against the current
We support each other as we drop from our heads to our hearts and hear the voice of truth
2018 is going to ask you to do that all the more
It’s ‘arse on cushion’ time
You simply cannot pretend anymore, for you will be ‘ripped apart’ if you do not listen to your own personal truth. Nobody else’s journey will be the same as yours, and there are teachers driving these trains who will show you a new world, through their own example, and it is your choice entirely if you are up for the ride.
And it’s funny that Keith the Chocolate Shaman uses buses as a similar example:
– The hard bus
– The easy bus
– and the magic bus
Which one are you on?
And don’t get me wrong I do not agree with everything that Bentinho says. He is a human being and yes sometimes he shocks me, but the majority of his words blow my mind. And the very most interesting aspect of this ‘scandal’ is what is has brought out for me, what this controversy has made me look at within; how this situation mirrors my own current lessons, for we only see what we need to, to progress on our own path.
The accusations of a ‘cult’ are interesting as I believe the biggest cult of all is mediocrity; the playing small in this world and towing the line. The Matrix describes this perfectly; take the blue pill and stay ‘asleep’, or dare to live a different life by risking the red pill.
And this is what we do daily as we sit on our cushion and meditate; we let go of what we ‘see’ and instead go within. We learn to listen to the language of our heart and live from that energy. This means we can never be harmed, for we are living from our truth.
No one is perfect
No teacher is flawless
Yet we still expect them to be so
Our disappointment when they seem to ‘fail’ is telling; do we really presume so much?
Do we honestly expect them to be faultless?
The ‘old’ Jo would not publicly support someone who ruffles so many feathers, but as this year of 2017 closes I end it with a huge shout out to this amazing teacher. I will continue to watch his livestreams and attend that in-person retreat in 2018.
I am now strong enough to stand up for my own beliefs
I am now aligned enough to speak out when it is uncomfortable
I am now confident enough in my truth to walk in the opposite direction to the masses, if that is what my heart is asking me to do
So drop down now
Listen to the internal voice
What is your heart telling you is the next step?
🎇 Happy New Year! 🎇
Member Quote Of The Day.
In this section you will read something that has been said by one of the Quantum Sobriety Online Programme members over on the very lively private forum:
V, Online Member