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May 14 2014

Favorite Jeff Brown quotes

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“Some of us cannot preserve our dignity and well-being if we remain connected to one or both of our parents. This is not to say that we don’t do our best to heal and preserve those relationships, but sometimes it is simply not possible and it is not healthy to continue. Unfortunately, many who have made the brave, necessary decision to disconnect are met with a shaming, shunning response from others. It is one of the most destructive and imprisoning guilt trips of all time “But she’s your mother”, “But he’s your father”, “They did their best”, “You owe them your life” etc. This has to stop. You can be sure that if someone is considering disconnecting from members of their family of origin, there must be very legitimate reasons for doing so. Even if they did their best, that doesn’t mean we have to stay in contact with them. Some wounds cut too deep. Some bridges have been permanently burnt. Some people do not change. Let’s get this straight- you are not a bad person if you choose to say good bye to abusive family members. You have every right to preserve your emotional integrity.”

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“Those who don’t want to deal with their issues have a tendency to pass them onto someone else. Then they can pretend they don’t have them anymore. Unfortunately, some of us become carriers of the virus- carrying another’s unresolved toxicity up the hill, legs buckling, short of breath, close to collapse. It’s too much. It’s hard enough to get through life without adding someone else’s baggage to our load. It is essential that we do a conscious baggage check now and then- being painstakingly honest with ourselves about the ways that we have accumulated other people’s stuff: What form is it in? How heavy is it? How does it block our expansion? Whose baggage is this, anyway? No one, absolutely no one, has the right to pass their baggage to another without their permission. Check their baggage at the nearest dump- it’s only yours if you choose to carry it. Better to travel life’s highways light.”
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“One of the great challenges for those who have survived abusive and neglectful parents is that there is often a part of us that is still waiting for them to love us, even if there is very little chance of that happening. Locked in an archaic mindset, we continue to go back for more, looking for love in all the wrong places. Somehow we imagine that they will come around one day, realize their mistakes, see our worth, soften those armored edges. And some do, often when they are very old, made vulnerable by sickness and time. But many don’t, and we need to stop putting our emotional lives on hold waiting for something that may never happen. The bridge from stagnation to empowerment lies in our willingness to see them for who they really are, to take them off their primal pedestal and recognize their human limitations. This is not easy- the hungry child self clings to illusions- but it is oh so necessary. Until we accept the reality of who can’t love us, we cannot embrace the love of those who can.”
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“When I had a terrible self-concept, I could never admit I was imperfect or that I was wrong. My healthy ego was not developed yet, so admitting my shadow was too much to bear. I so wanted to see something good about me, after a childhood of negative feedback. It’s important to remember that people often cannot acknowledge their flaws and mistakes, because their self-concepts are not strong enough to handle the admissions. Swimming in a pool of self-hatred, they can’t take one more drop of contempt. After working hard to work through my shame-body- healing it, and proving my value with various achievements- it became a lot easier to admit my shadow characteristics, my mistakes, my arrogance. And, then, because my issues were more transparent, I could actually begin the journey of working them through. This is why the ego bashing intrinsic to the shadow jumping community is a dangerous thing. It confuses people and discourages them from developing the healthy ego necessary to manage reality and value themselves. We need a certain degree of egoic strength to evolve and flourish. Kudos to the healthy self-concept. Really.”
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“Anger is a river. It wants to be released into the vaster ocean. It wants to move naturally. When we repress it with premature forgiveness, block it with false positivity, repress it in the name of pseudo-peace, we just dam(n) our natural flow. The river then turns inward, against the self, or explodes outwardly, against innocents. Better we express it when it is in our awareness- not in a way that is destructive to humanity- but in a way that is authentic and that restores the integrity of our being. Anger isn’t the enemy. Misplaced anger is. Let the river flow…”
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“We die inside when we silence our rightful expressive inheritance. We die inside when we let fear of judgment obscure our knowing. We die inside when we shame and bypass our feelings. We die inside when we choose a path that isn’t ours to walk. We die inside when we forget our magnificence, encoded within us from the beginning. I am so tired of the little deaths of self-diminishment. Better to live true.”

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“I am not interested in enlightenment if it means detachment from the emotional body, the earth plane, the challenges of being human. I am interested in enrealment, because it means that my most spiritual moments are inclusive, arising right in the heart of all that is human: joy and sorrow, shopping list and unity consciousness, fresh mangos and stale bread. Enrealment is about living in all aspects of reality simultaneously rather than only those realms that feel the most comfortable. We are not just the light, or the mind, or the emptiness, or perpetual positivity. We are the everything. It’s ALL God, even the dust that falls off my awakening heart.” ~an excerpt from ‘Love it Forward’
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“I was often a runner in relationship. I ran for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes it was a healthy flight- I wasn’t ready to love, I had other priorities, I had preparation work to do before I could deeply connect. But sometimes I ran for unhealthy reasons- I associated family with trauma from my early life, I assumed love meant imprisonment, I imagined every woman my difficult mother. Distinguishing between healthy and unhealthy motivations took me many years, but it may be the most important clarification work I did on my life’s journey. Because if our flight from connection is motivated by our unresolved life history, our defenses can convince us to run for the rest of it. And then we lose the opportunity to taste a different reality, one that meets our needs and heals our hearts. It’s worth examining- Am I running to something better, or am I running away from something unresolved?”
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“One thing I have learned with certainty is not to stand in connection with those who diminish me. This is particularly difficult when family is involved, because we have a vested interest in perpetuating the family system for all kinds of different reasons. I don’t believe one should endure abuse no matter how attached they are to an idea of family. There are many families (read: soulpod) waiting for us just outside our habitual awareness. We are not responsible for those who diminish us. We really have to get that. We can be compassionate and we can certainly understand where their abusiveness comes from, but understanding the origins does not mean we have to endure it. It’s not our cross to bear.”

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“Our survival adaptations are so tough, but our wounds are so delicate. To heal, we have to lift the armor carefully- it saved our lives, after all. It’s like moving your best friend off to the side of the path. You don’t trample on her, you don’t hit him with a sledgehammer. You honor her presence like a warm blanket that has kept you safe and sound during wintry times. And then, when the moment is right, you get inside and stitch your wounds with the thread of love, slowly and surely, not rushing to completion, nurturing as you weave, tender and true. The healing process has a heart of its own, moving at its own delicate pace. We are such wondrous weavers…”
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“It can be so subtle, can’t it? The ways we avoid the real. I still catch myself using positivity and perfection as a cover, as a way to avoid those confusing, chaotic and disappointing places that feel uncomfortable. Yes, there is a place for order and achievement, but if we can’t live in the discomforts, we aren’t really here. We can’t be here and only show up for some of it, can we? It’s all divinity, even the murky, the mucky, the mad. How can it be any other way? To be human is to touch it all.”
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“The nature of awakening is not transcendence. It is not detachment. It is not leaving our bodies. It is not dismissing our shadow. It is not bashing our story. It is not feigned positivity. It is not new age mysticism. The nature of awakening is inclusivity. It is connectiveness. It is shadow and light. It is enheartened presence. And presence is not to be found on the skyways of self-avoidance. Presence is to be found right down here, in our body temples, soul to sole on mother earth. Awakening requires that we show up for all of it. The great in-wakening. The wholly holy.”
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“Sensitivity is a sign of life. Better hurt than hardened. I bow to those who keep their hearts open when it is most difficult, those who refuse to keep their armor on any longer than they have to, those who recognize the courage at the heart of vulnerability. After all the malevolent warriors end each other, the open-hearted will inherit the earth.”

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“I know we often want it all happy and positive, but that’s just not where much of humanity is. Many of us are overwhelmed with pain, undigested sadness, unexpressed anger, unseen truths. This is where we are at, as a collective. So we have two choices. We can continue to pretend it’s not there, shame and shun it in ourselves and others, distract and detach whenever possible. Or we can face it heart-on, own it within ourselves, look for it in others with compassion, create a culture that is focused on authenticity and healthy emotional release. If we continue to push it all down, we are both creating illness and delaying our collective expansion. But if we can just own the shadow, express it, release it, love each other through it, we can finally graduate from the School of Heart Knocks and begin to enjoy this magnificent life as we were intended. Pretending the pain isn’t there just embeds it further. Let’s illuminate it instead.”
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“At this stage of human development, we are all, to greater or lesser degrees, well conditioned in repressing our authentic self in favor of whatever mask or defence we need to manage reality. Of course, it often goes much too far, and we retain these patterns of repression far longer and with greater frequency than is necessary, or certainly healthy.”
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Two links about parents:
    • dmarsch

      Thank you for this eloquent description of life.

    • Vaporlass

      Wow… beautifully written. It’s as if you have said everything I’ve been trying to say and write for years and you have done it so eloquently.
      I feel the connection, despite the thousands of miles… amazing. I have to admit I’m a bit jealous or rather envious that you were able to articulate so expressively the ideas, beliefs and concepts that are in my heart, mind and soul.