“Attainment too is Emptiness…”

Written in writing group on Monday, September 4
The title comes from a Buddhist chant to the Bodhisattva of Compassion.

and nothing to say…  nothing to say…  The world is empty.  I’m the only one left on the planet.  That was the most awful feeling, to feel so alone. Was that before I knew I was traumatized?  I remember describing it as lying in the street, at night, unable to move, and there was a steam roller coming toward me, but the driver couldn’t see me, or hear me, and there is no one on the sidewalks to help me…     Trying to describe the fear before I knew it was how I felt as a baby left alone.  I knew that doom was coming down on me, and crying didn’t bring help, and I was too young to move…    It wasn’t until I read Waking the Tiger, and he describes the process that results in trauma, and says that a baby can be traumatized by being left alone in a cold room.  Now when I’m alone too much, I don’t get scared, but I do get confused and apathetic.

Waking the Tiger is the book where Peter Levine describes Somatic Experiencing, his method for healing trauma. Somatic Experiencing is a category in this blog, you can click in it and find all the posts that describe my experiences.

“Show us the path that you know so well, together we’ll set forth, on the ancient way of honor to follow you into the north…”     I think of Chief Joseph, trying to get to Canada and being stopped and his tribe put on a reservation in Montana.  I think of the Turks driving the Armenians into the desert in 1915, the Armenian Genocide.  The Turks said they were inspired by the Americans driving the Cherokee on the Trail of Tears

“Show us the path that you know so well…” is a song by Magpie. It’s about wolves and how they guide us toward honorable action. The words “to follow you into the north” resonate for me with a situation where you no longer can live with people who only care about money and power, so you travel north, knowing you are going toward your death, but it’s the only honorable action you can see.

I remember Mother saying she’d send me back to Sears & Roebucks.  I thought I didn’t take it seriously, but I remember when Daddy came back with a new car, I made up a story about how our old car found a family that loved it.  When I got here to Kendal, and they said I wouldn’t have to leave if I ran out of money, I felt safe for the very first time.

I had no idea how that threat to send me away if I didn’t behave the way she wanted has remained in my subconscious.  I do remember when I told her we were building Neskaya, she said “If you run out of money, don’t come to me.”

I think of how hard it is for me to get rid of things, because I don’t want to throw them away, I want to find them a good home.  I always felt “thrown away” in my family of origin, though I didn’t know it until I looked at my stories about how things they didn’t want found a new home.

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