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The Great Turning

Slowly I am unwinding from Covid hibernation. I’m still not trusting the freedom I feel, while I enjoy the cool air standing upright. My atrophied body improves every day as I stretch my muscles and tendons. I have more movement, more outside time, more sunshine and enjoying my curiosity.

The collective hibernation is slowly lifting like the turning of a cumbersome water wheel, slowing emptying and refilling as we move on step by step. This water wheel represents the great turning of the world; the great turning of collective consciousness; the great turning of individual awareness as we emerge more into our true selves every day.

Tony Robbins says, “Life is happening for us, not to us.” Every experience we live through, no matter how devastating or joyous, is here to teach us something.

My life turned a crucial corner when I embraced my challenges that were happening FOR ME instead of TO ME. I changed my victim mentality, curled in a ball, defending and blaming into a creative mentality learning and growing from every opportunity. My life literally took on a deeper meaning. My challenges didn’t disappear. My daughter wasn’t spontaneously healed. My perception changed. My energy improved. My outlook on life became curious. My thinking mind worked more with me than against me. I stood straighter, became healthier, breathed clearer and lived more fully every day.

Once I made this significant change, I feared going back, feared losing what I found. What I discovered was once experiencing life beyond victim, there’s no going back. I tasted freedom.

“Perception is the sensory experience of the world. It involves both recognizing environmental stimuli and actions in response to these stimuli. Perception not only creates our experience of the world around us; it allows us to act within our environment.”What is Perception? article on

Every human on this earth has the choice to live in a perception of their choosing. We all have our tragic stories, very real, painful stories. Our lives are not a competition to see whose life is worse. Our life experience is ours alone, relative to our individuality.

In this meditative community we practice letting go every day by practicing self-compassion, gratitude, kindness to ourselves and to others, self-awareness, and letting go. The Huffington Post has a great article entitled 10 Ways to Stop Feeling Like a Victim Once and for All

Life is happening for us, not to us. The only trait one needs to bring to the table is a willingness to grow. We build kindness and compassion by practicing together and apart. I am grateful for my willingness to stay present, find my way back to presence, and enjoy the company of seekers along the way. Thank you for joining me.

Participants’ Reflections:

  • Thank you. The difference in the word between victim and survivor reminded me of something important that happened in my life. I decided to volunteer at a rape crisis center. I told the director my story and I said, “I’m a victim.” I could tell she reacted to my words and later on she said, “We don’t use the word victim. We use survivor.” I didn’t like that because it downplayed the painful event. During the meditation, I was thinking about all the things we survive, like cancer, child abuse, Covid, 9/11. There has to be a mental, physical, and psychological transition as one moves from victim to survivor. As I gave talks over time, I slowly began to understand the difference. The word survivor is a positive word and for me, it goes to where I transmuted from victim to survivor who could help other people. It is in pain we grow.

  • Your reading helped me understand that this coming out of the Covid era has been a challenge for me. It’s almost like a new leaf or fern trying to unfurl right now. Spiritually, I’m being called to this whole new level and I’m trying to integrate that while physically, I’m trying to creep back out into the world and do the things I need and want to do. And economically, that’s a whole other recovery. It brought me a sense of patience and understanding that this is a process, that we are coming out of a pandemic. And in terms of survivor, I’m wondering if those action verbs are what I need for coming out of the pandemic. I’m working on a project that is analyzing the PTSD that we as a society have been through. Coming through to the other side, they tracked some 9/11 actual victims, others who lived in New York but were not at the towers, and others who lived in the country. Within two years, the PTSD went to PTG—post-traumatic growth. They analyzed what can be on the other side for those of us who totally embrace the unfurling that is happening. That we don’t jump from one set of emotions to another. Your reading reminded me to have compassion for myself and be patient, even though one part of me wants to crawl out like a baby, another part of me wants to ascend into a whole new level of spiritual expression and service in my community. It’s been challenging. I thank you for speaking your truth to help me come to my truth of letting this unfurl like that fern.

  • Thank you for the reading. I was reminded of the reading the other day of holding onto the pain and anger so that it isn’t minimized. One wants everyone to know how much it hurt and so one hangs onto it. It’s an interesting thing to change the word from victim to survivor, and thriver, so that one does find a way to release the pain and anger, and to move on. The line ‘life is happening for us, not to us,’ was in a film I saw where life coaches were telling their stories to a depressed woman who was drinking. I’m still thinking of that line. It also changes my whole mindset from being a victim, that this is happening for me, not to me. It’s my opportunity to learn and not fall apart.

  • We have a right to fall apart, but we don’t have to pitch a tent and live there forever.

  • Thank you. Thank you for listening today. I didn’t know where I wanted to go with this, but I knew ‘life is happening for me, not to me’ was a key. I heard it last night and it came in with a light and a bell. I just sat with it, trusting that I would start somewhere. It started with me coming out of that hibernating cave that I am doing. Stretching my muscles and tendons. I stand up now and not just sit on the couch. I appreciate you all being with my words. I hope you all have a gentle day, a day of awareness and perception, as we go forward, being kind to yourself, being compassionate to yourself. Noticing the little things.

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1 Comment

May 13, 2021

Thank you Shirley! Something made me read this today and it was helpful.

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