By Rob Moore
A while back I came across some proofs from a professional photo shoot of me taken when I was just barely into my 30s. I have to say I was rather disturbed by the person I saw staring back at me in those images. So uncomfortable. So guarded. I recall the photographer wanting to get some tough-looking photos as well as some pleasant ones.
Unfortunately, the only look he captured was ‘uncomfortable’. As in, ‘not comfortable in this life’.
With the Sun presently in earthy, sensual Taurus, I have noticed my thoughts leaning toward things of a more physical nature lately. It is quite possible you have, as well. To that point, Eric looks further into Mercury’s retrograde passage through Taurus in the latest Planet Waves FM and discusses the importance of claiming ‘our right to be in our bodies’.
Also, Eric describes his personal experiences with world-famous astrologer and my fellow Sagittarius Jonathan Cainer following his unexpected passing this week. If you think that might be a downer, think again. Eric’s accounts are as full of life as Cainer was himself.
Many years ago during a grave and extended illness, I briefly slipped out of the body. That turned out to be one of the greatest gifts I ever received because I was essentially reminded how there is nothing to fear or be sad about. Here or beyond. Yet upon learning that Jonathan had passed, I cried. Deeply and repeatedly. I believe this is the first time I have cried about a death since my own experience with it. But since Cainer has been amongst the brightest of guiding lights that has led me to a better way of living, I wept completely for myself.
I perceive Jonathan’s easy transition as a direct testament to how freely and comfortably he lived in the physical world. And that is an inspiring thing. Yet most of us do not plop out of the womb onto a direct path of living quite so freely. For a great many of us, it is a rather winding and tunneled path we have to navigate to at last feel all is well within our bodies, and therefore within our world.
My attention has been brought to all this recently by some people on the periphery of my life who are painfully uncomfortable in their own bodies. One of these individuals resides at my address. Seeing him walk around with his rigid limbs extended out like armor is so difficult to watch, I feel sure he has arrived on my scene specifically to teach me something.
One thing is for sure: Aided by finding those uncomfortable-looking photos of myself, I am now able to recall what it felt like to exist in a state of perpetual self-consciousness and being ill at ease. Are these feelings or states of being that you can relate to in any way? Such deep discomfort is not at all uncommon among us.
Also very notable to me have been some closed-off and guarded types I have encountered among my more recent sexual experiences. To me, kissing is just about the most sensual way to engage. But pressing my lips against a tightly held mouth that is so on guard its muscles can barely open I find to be a deeply saddening state of affairs. What’s deeply exhilarating, though, is having the opportunity to stick with the interaction and feel that partner physically soften, soften, soften until they let go fully into the very moment we’re sharing. Mmmmm. Good stuff.
To feel safe as a member of the world and to have the opportunity to extend a zone of safety to someone else — if only for a little while — is a direct result of all the unlearning I’ve done to be able to relax completely into myself. It started for me with the practice of rebirthing, which involves deep emoting but always aims to end in a place of deep peace. This is actually how I came to first discover the place of higher wisdom that resides in and around me.
This was a profound discovery for me. It’s how that frightened and guarded young man in those photos soon found it safe to relax into his true feelings and true self. And that never would have happened if I had blindly swallowed the think-only-positive-thoughts insistence handed down since the 1980s.
I have relished being reminded by Jonathan Cainer of the positive spin on things each and every day. I will miss his brand of that delicious nectar. But I have always been very aware of what different Sagittarius cloth Cainer and I were cut from. Whereas he seemed so often to go directly to the light, bright and positive, I have found myself to be more akin to positivity’s plumber. I feel drawn to locate and snake out the feelings, perceptions — and misperceptions — that block the brilliant truth. I mean, when we honestly can’t see any picture but a bleak one, this is very often the most direct route to realizing the perfection of ‘what is’.
I never found merely chanting positively spun sentences while feeling like crap inside to be genuinely seeing the positive. It always felt more like denial, which is how that 30-year-old me became guarded and closed-off and not at all comfortable with his life.
In 1999, after contemplating the idea for over a year, I took time off from work and poured my heart, soul and truth into compiling The Black & White Book. Using the palette of a black page and white page per spread, I expressed every emotion that had welled up in me about any and every topic that came to mind. What I allowed to spew forth led naturally and organically to an uplifting shift in perspective, which I joyfully recorded on that white page.
My hope was to demonstrate the transformative power of this exercise when our heartfelt goal is to find a way of looking at events in a new way. I invite you to see some examples on my site and find out if this approach speaks to you.
For a great many the idea of delving into such emotions does not seem inviting at all. I’m glad to say there are actually some simple-to-execute life improvements I also put into place that rapidly became so second nature, I rarely ever consciously think about them.
One is the often-overlooked practice of finding my ground. For much of my life I walked around with my head in the clouds ignoring whether or not my feet were firmly planted somewhere… anywhere. I didn’t care, didn’t want to be bothered with it and didn’t think it mattered. And yet I was completely, 100% baffled at how nothing was coming of my hopes and dreams. Quite simply, they weren’t gaining any ground.
Purely from a physical standpoint, I have a genetic predisposition towards a giant torso and skinny legs. This, I have learned, is a clear indicator of the need to consciously incorporate grounding principles throughout this lifetime in order to balance things out. The great news is that achieving this is no big deal at all. (Which is exactly why I skipped over it for so many years.)
In the simplest of terms, right where you are, consciously feel the Earth beneath you. Or feel the floor beneath you, which is, after all, directly connected to the Earth. Whenever I’m setting my sights for a new project, an excursion or just a new day, the first thing I do is stand up and acknowledge the Earth’s gravitational force that is literally anchoring me in place. Feeling solidly anchored, I then breathe in the energy that hums just beneath me, and proceed to lay out my intentions to my guidance.
The main thing here is to feel your body’s connection to the Earth however it works best for you; right there where you sit, stand or lie. And then above all, incorporate this acknowledgement into each day. It may not seem like much at first; God knows for me it sure didn’t. But I’m here to tell you, in the most physical of ways, certain tasks and movements that have been an arduous chore begin to lighten.
The most notable shift for me was working out legs at the gym. I used to actually cry on leg day because I hated and dreaded how terrible the exercises felt. Once I made that conscious connection to the ground beneath me, my workouts became less and less difficult. Today, not only do I look forward to leg day, I incorporate a little leg-strengthening exercise into every single workout.
Basically, that leg feeling was the feeling of fear. Tremendous fear. Bordering on internal terror. Just like ‘think only positive thoughts’ will never deal with any hurt or anger buried underneath, no amount of ‘just keep pushing’ my resistant legs would change the situation. Turned out there was a vital factor I was ignoring: the Earth. A remedy that is everywhere I looked, and basically its mere acknowledgement was all that was needed.
Similarly, for so much of my life I wasn’t feeling or listening to my body. I mean in the most rudimentary of ways… like giving it the rest it was crying out for. It has been my experience that the more sensitive I have become to what’s going on beneath me and around me, the more sensitive my physical body has become. It is literally used as a message center for me to personally decipher.
I mentioned a couple weeks back that I haven’t been having sex lately. My body is definitely telling me that human touch is in order again. I have found that just the experience of touching others for a good, quality amount of time does much to alter my perspective. Following this enriching activity, I feel so much more connected with all those I encounter in the world. My sense of oneness increases. Interesting how engaging beyond my one body does that.
As we pass through this season of retrogrades, it is quite likely that our ability to be in touch with what our bodies need is heightened. What is your body asking for? More specifically, what does your body indicate it wants before the analytical brain makes a judgment about it? Whether it’s a sensation, sight, sound or feeling that you feel drawn toward, I would suggest merely considering how that can be realized. No matter what anyone would think should that desire manifest.
For now, maybe just get comfortable with the ideas that your body is suggesting. Maybe just get comfortable with what you’re feeling. Maybe just get comfortable.
Such a lovely piece, Rob. Thank you. Once again, I find that I share so many elements of your ‘journey’. Yesterday I was talking to a friend about how, almost every time I get into a more serene and happy space, it doesn’t last long, because I get whacked again by grief, or old feelings of shame, paranoia, etc., and go tumbling down that rabbit hole again. But it seems to be that it’s the serene space I’m in that allows for shadow stuff/wretched feelings to come up and be looked at -which is a vital part of coming into awareness, and healing.
Regarding, your great advice on physical work, I’ve been doing Qi Gong – Tai Chi classes for the last couple of years – which I find absolutely amazing for grounding and release, and for integrating mind, heart and body.
It is indeed a journey, Lizzy. I am glad to say I feel like I am consciously on one these days as opposed to the roller coaster of my earlier years.
I myself have experimented with Qi Gong in recent years. Like most things, I took what I learned and adapted movements that had direct meaning for me.
Thank you for sharing your insights on this topic =]
“I am glad to say I feel like I am consciously on one these days as opposed to the roller coaster of my earlier years.” Me too, Rob, me too! xxx
“I am now able to recall what it felt like to exist in a state of perpetual self-consciousness and being ill at ease. Are these feelings or states of being that you can relate to in any way? Such deep discomfort is not at all uncommon among us.” – Yep, that basically describes my existence, with the occasional bout of pure terror added in for shits and giggles. Thanks to the profound kindness I’ve encountered from Eric and a few others, however, I’m slowly making progress.
I reacted to Jonathan’s passing much as you did, and inexplicably I still find it enervating. I can find no way to reconcile it to myself, and considering how much his loss must mean to those who actually knew him, I feel both puzzled and dreadfully guilty.
Hi Amy – Getting comfortable in our own skin is an ongoing process; one it sounds like you have gotten underway. That you have supportive individuals in your life is a huge, huge gift that helps as much as anything. I’m so glad that is true for you.
I understand completely the difficulty in resolving someone like Cainer being suddenly removed from our day, our lives, and our support system, whatever form that system may have taken. I can’t quite figure out why you would feel guilty, though. I can only venture to guess that anger for what seems like ‘being left to handle this’ could figure in. If so, that is part of the process of grieving that needs to be felt and expressed in a private and safe way.
If I’ve missed the marked the source of guilt, however, please feel free to fill me in by all means. Or for sure someone you trust deeply.
Sending healing vibes =]
<3 thank you
I feel the same grief as you do, Amy (and Rob) – think it’s also because Jonathan was a kind of avatar. Rem,ember that you have such loving, supportive people in your lives, because they are a reflection of what you are. xxxx
Thanks, Lizzy. Much appreciated. xx
- I mean, in your life (mondy morning).