relationships

Before I get started there are a couple of things I need to say about Landmark for preface and transparency.

  1. I have taken the first two Landmark curriculum classes.  The Forum and The Advanced Course.  I also signed up for and completed the first work day of the third and final course (Self Expression and Leadership Program – SELP) before ending my relationship with Landmark.
  2. I got it.  Landmark transformed me just as promised.
  3. I think that Landmark has a lot to offer just about everyone.

Ok, now that that is out of the way I also have to say that I strongly disagree with many of their practices.

The teachings are incredible and if you can give yourself over to the process then amazing things can happen in your life.

  • I have found and asked for forgiveness
  • I have released a ton of my baggage and see my past for what it was and not what I made it into.
  • I have new clarity on why I have acted the way I have, chosen the relationships I have chosen and made the choices I have made.
  • I can see what is holding me back and where my failures have come from.
  • I have learned how to express gratitude and ask for help.
  • I am more comfortable with discomfort.
  • My fear is subsiding.
  • I have joy in my life.
  • I have a new level of confidence  and know that I am fully prepared for whatever lies ahead and that what lies ahead is whatever I dream it could be.
  • So so much more.

You would think with all that and more I would be shouting from the rooftops that everyone should absolutely stop whatever they are doing right now and sign up to take these courses.  Unfortunately every time I speak of Landmark I have to add a ton of caveats about the downsides of this company.

Along side a very good curriculum is a very poor marketing plan.  They are constantly pushing you to bring people to the program.   And the further you get in the better the curriculum gets and the more they push bringing people in.   It is distracting and unnecessary and I have told them so.

I spent a lot of time during the Advanced course being angry about this, but I also try to remind myself that everything they do is orchestrated to bring up certain emotions and help you face your fears.  And the expectation of bringing people to the program definitely did that for me, ultimately helping me break my cycle with expectation and failure.  So, it’s not all bad.

But, I think all that could be accomplished without pressuring me to market the program for them.  I had serious work to do and all that bullshit was distracting from that.

The thing I don’t think they realize is that our stories are their best marketing tool and if they just gave us room to tell our stories to those we think might benefit from their program without any pressure or deception they might open up new space for themselves and be able to take their company to the next level.  Seems like they need to take some of their own advice.

If you are considering taking these classes please be aware of these tactics and just put them aside.  If you just let it go, give yourself over to the process and don’t take it too seriously there are tremendous benefits to be gained from taking this challenge on.

Always best to know what your getting into, I think.

If your interested…

Over this last week I have been noticing some subtle, yet important, changes in the way I feel. Because the emotional and self perception issues are so huge for me, I have vowed not to weigh myself or even measure myself until October. I am letting go of numbered results and concentrating on how I feel and healing myself.

Over the Memorial Day Weekend I had a big breakthrough on becoming comfortable with my body as it is.  I even stated out loud that I would be fine to stay this way forever as long as I didn’t gain any more,  a very important step according to Jon.  I have listened to the CD before going to sleep every night except one over the last two weeks and have changed the way I do the visualizations.

When I visualize the following days, I concentrate mostly on being happy.  I say “Tomorrow I am going to be happy”.  I say this several times and then I see myself doing any really important things I have to get done the next day as well as the habit I am working on right now.  Right now that is remembering to take my supplements.  I also try to fit in the love, appreciation and forgiveness visualizations that Jon describes whenever I can or is appropriate.  As I result I have been feeling a lightness around me, happier, more patient, more feelings.  I even feel more productive in a different way than usual and I find it hard to explain.

I got the idea to change the focus of my visualizations from a book I am reading right now on the 2012 prophesies (The Mystery Of 2012).   The book is a compilation of essays and book excerpts by many of the people who are studying these prophesies.   All angles are covered, everything from physics, astronomy and archaeology to spiritual and astrological perspectives.  

Although some of the articles are quite dense and others are a little far fetched, it has been really interesting to explore this time we live in as a time of significant change.  One of the essays that is about spirituality talks about being happy versus being good and how being happy and radiating unconditional love into the world (things Jon also encourages) can transform us not only as individuals but also as a global society.    Here are several quotes from the essay “Wild Love Sets Us Free” by Gill Edwards that helped me change my perspective a little and concentrate my energy more on joy and love and less on being good or bad.   I am hoping I will get a chance to read more from her.

Most of us have internalized a cold, critical, repressive inner voice…that tells us how to behave, constantly criticizes us, keeps our noses to the grindstone, and squashes or denies our true feelings…  To the extent that we give our power to this inner judge, we are tamed and locked away.  We feel trapped and disempowered…The inevitable result is anxiety, depression, physical illness, dysfunctional relationships, or a pervasive joylessness that we cannot explain. — The Mystery of 2012 p. 245

This just struck me like a brick to the head.

Whenever we split the world into good and bad, conflict and neurosis are inevitable.  Our energy becomes split or divided.  Whenever we pride ourselves on saying “no” to a cream cake, working through our lunch break, or pleasing our partner at the expense of our own feelings, we are bowing to the old cosmology.  Trying to be good stems from a dualistic way of thinking.  It is based upon judgement, or conditional love.  It fuels self-righteousness, which means someone is “in the right” and someone else is “in the wrong”–some part of self is right (the judge within) and another part is bad and wrong (our feelings, thoughts and desires).  This inner conflict will be mirrored in conflict with others.  Splitting ourselves internally leads to projecting our shadow onto others…This dynamic creates a huge proportion of the misery in the world and blocks our natural ability to love with an open heart and speak honestly without blame or defensiveness. — The Mystery of 2012 p. 248-9

She goes onto discuss how this can effect us as a whole society and even globally. Our outlook and attitude effects the world around us. Why not give love and positive creative energy to the universe rather than negative unproductive energy. Maybe if I learn to love unconditionally and be truly happy I will also be able to improve the communication in my marriage and be more patient with my kids, have more tolerance with others and less judgement bringing positivity not only to myself but to everyone I interact with.

When we aim to be happy…we give off vibrations of self-love, self-worth, and appreciation, and our relationships mirror this by becoming deeper, happier and more authentic. In other words, much of what we have been taught about “what love means”–self-sacrifice, putting others first, being loyal to others at the expense of our own feelingz or authenticity, or feeling entitlex to have others behave as we wish them to–actually leads us away from loving relationships and into the twilight prison of codependency. It leads us toward tame love, which constantly slips into toxic cycles of control and sacrifice, blame and guilt. Tame love splinters our awareness and strangles our potential. It holds us hostage… — The Mystery of 2012 p. 250-1

I started to think that creating a life that not only makes me happy, but also makes my family and friends happy and leads to living an authentic and giving life, may lie in my happiness, that I have the ability to create change and improvements by loving myself and radiating love outward.

Instead of seeing life as a harsh training school for wayward souls, or a karmic wheel from which we might eventually escape (if we are good or lucky enough), or merely a statistical accident with no inherent meaning or purpose, we instead see life as a wondrous gift. We are not here to be good or perfect. We are not here to prove ourselves worthy. We are not here to serve others (at our own expense) or to save the world. We do not have to earn or deserve love. We do not have to “behave well” or conform to external rules and expectations. In a loving universe, we can relax. We are safe. We are worthy. We are loved without condition. We are cosmic voyagers on a magnificent adventure in physical reality and…we can have, do, or be anything we wish. No limits. No strings attached… The key to doing so is unconditional love–for self, others, and the world. — The Mystery of 2012 p. 256-7

It sounds a little idealistic, even to me, but that is a world I would like to live in. A peaceful, loving, accepting world where we live together with respect and love for one another.

Buy the Gabriel Method Book Now!

Recently I have decided that seeing a therapist might really help me to deal with some residual pain and issues that have been lingering from childhood as well as the current unstable state of my emotions. I also hope that it will help give me some perspective and direction on my path to a happier more fulfilling life and a career that I might find interesting.

Finding a therapist is easier said than done in many cases. Oh yes, if you were willing to pick blindly off a list, then it’s cake. But, I was looking for someone who would resonate with my belief system (no christian counseling please – you would be very surprised how many that eliminates), had a time slot that would work for me and of course was on my provider list.

I did find someone, but she only had middle of the day spots, which initially I balked at because I don’t have child care. I then found out that there was no one else that I really liked and I decided I really wanted her, so I called back a few days later to take the one available appointment and it was gone. She was full and no longer accepting patients. Great.

Well, for a couple of weeks, I just let the whole therapist thing go and concentrated on doing what I could myself for my current situation. This has gone pretty well, actually. I feel a lot better. I have been really embracing and feeling my emotions, I think for the first time in many many years. This has allowed me to let some it go and to have the courage to do something that was very difficult but necessary.

I was talking with my friend T and she suggested I see if I could get on a waiting list with this woman that I want to see. So yesterday, I sent an email to see if she had a waiting list and she wrote back that she now has three appointments available. They are still daytime appointments, but we are just going to have to work it out. I am now confirmed to begin therapy next week. Yea!

I also asked her to put me on the waiting list for later appointments as they become available. This way, I can hopefully end up with an evening appointment in the next several months.

I am very excited to begin. She specializes in life journeys and incorporating or releasing residual baggage from the past as well as moving forward on the life path you are meant to follow. I am so looking forward to begin this work.

For me, and I think for many with childhood issues, it is important that I learn to accept what happened, understand that it wasn’t my fault and learn to do what I have to to let it go and stop the patterns that were created by it.

A lesson I learned for this process is not to be afraid to ask for what you need. She has been very supportive and accommodating of my scheduling issues, within her boundaries of course, and I ended up seeing the right person and on a path to it working well for my schedule. Finding a way to make things that matter work and asking for what you need are two very important life lessons.

You may think that sharing something like seeing a therapist is too personal to share on a blog, and yes it is a very personal thing. I am sharing because I want every woman, mother or person for that matter to know that talking with someone in order to grow or heal or whatever your goal is not something shameful at all. On the contrary, talking about your feelings is the healthy way to deal with our problems. Much better than the variety of escapism methods available or taking it out on the people we love.

It is brave to face your demons head on and wise to know when we need more that we can provide ourselves.

As a matter of coincidence, the next tarot reading in my self inventory is all about relationships and how they will work out. How fitting that I am beginning a new relationship that I would love some insight on.

SI2008 – #11 How will this relationship turn out

This reading will be using the major arcana and cup cards we have been examining lately to take a looker depth at one of my relationships.

The Layout

For this reading I will be using the .

The cards in play are…

I-X of Cups
I-X of Trumps (Major Arcana)

Shuffle the cups and major arcana cards separately while concentrating on the question. Deal the top two major arcana cards into positions 1 & 2 (see ). Deal the top four cups into positions 3 through 6.

Shuffle the remaining major arcana and cups cards together while concentrating on the question. Deal the top four cards into positions 7 through 10.

The question: How will my relationship with my new therapist go?

The Spread

1. Covers You (current situation) – I Magician
2. Crosses You (challenges) – V Faith
3. Above You (what is possible) – VIII Cups
4. Below You (how you got here) – I Cups
5. Behind You (recent past) – IV Cups
6. Before You (what’s next) – III Cups
7. Who You Are – VII Chariot
8. Who They Want You to Be – IX Hermit
9. What You Want – II Priestess
10. What You Get – X Wheel

The Answer

You are taking a deliberate action. You have a strong desire to be in control. A magical moment is happening. You must commit fully and play by the rules for the relationship to last. You may be tempted to walk away.

This relationship formed suddenly. There is an instantaneous connection.

Just recently you listened to your gut. Coming up there is a celebration.

You make the moves and they want you to tell the truth. You want this to feel right and know that you made the right decision.

You will get out of this relationship what you put into it. It will have it’s ups and down, but is an honest, real relationship.

Sounds like the relationship I would like to have with a therapist. It shouldn’t always be easy, but it should be honest and the connection is essential.

 

The Cards

X Wheel – Covers You

My Take: A Magician sits in a throne. He holds an orb that shines a light upon a wand, cup, sword and coin in the shape of an infinity symbol. He has a very deliberate look on his face. It looks as if he is illuminating the fact that you have all the tools you need at your disposal and it is just up to you to act on it. You must make it happen yourself.

The Card: Education and training, transforming ideas into plans. The magician is a teacher and gives us invaluable advice about our path. This can represent either a person in your life that serves this purpose or it can refer to our inner inspiration that helps to to learn and gives us our flashes of genius. The four suit symbols represent different ways to approach something. The magician gives us the tools and helps us choose what mixture of these is the most appropriate for the situation.

V Faith – Crosses You

My Take: A man prays. There are many religious symbols in a glowing circle in front of him. This is a religious man, but their are many options available to him. I see this as the opportunity to explore a new way of thinking or belief system.

The Card: The faith card represents our ability to find meaning in things. To many this means religion, but it can also encompass all other points of view as well. We must beware of becoming to rigid or judgmental in our thinking.

VIII Cups – Above You – The best you can hope for given the current circumstances.

My Take: A figure walks up a set of steps to the far away moon. There are 8 cups at his feet and a black and white checkered floor. This cards always represents leaving something behind to me. You are choosing to climb the stairs and walk toward something new, but this also means leaving some things in your life behind.

The Card: Every time we choose one path, it means abandoning another. We look to the moon for new inspiration and leave the cups behind. The cups could represent and idea or project abandoned. It can also refer to a sense of restlessness of the unexplainable need to leave.

I Cups – Below You – How you got here

My take: A single cup sits on the water. The sky looks like sunrise. There is an intricate orb within the cup. One represents newness and cups represent relationships and emotions, so the one of cups means a new relationship to me.

The card: The potential of new relationships and/or emotions. The subconscious is handing you a new emotion, like a gift. A new emotion or relationship is about to begin.

IV Cups – Behind You – Recent past

My take: A figure sits naked in the grass, vulnerable and open to new possibilities. There are three cups on the ground and one in the sky, like it is being presented by the universe. He looks up to the cup in the sky, curious, but not yet ready to reach out an grab it as his hands are still hugging his knees. You are being presented with a new opportunity, but may not yet be fully ready to embrace it. Don’t miss this open door by contemplating too long. WRONG

The Card: This is the grass is always greener card. You may look to better your situation or be discontent with your current circumstances.

III Cups – Before You – Coming soon

My take: The are mardigras beads and masks as well as three cups on a floor with a golden sun on it. Four columns are in the background. This is a card about celebrations and parties. Being with friends. The masks may indicate that you are not ready to reveal everything just yet.

The card: This card represents celebrations and good fortune. Doing something nice for ourselves. Gatherings of all kinds, both formal and casual. Beware of overindulgence.

VII Chariot – Who You Are

My take: A man rides his chariot over a crashing wave, his steeds galloping through the water. There is a steel structure in the background reminiscent of an oil rig. For me, this card speaks to forward motion. Setting the wheels in motion. Moving strongly toward the goal. We just need to remember to keep ourselves grounded in the real world (the metal structure).

The card: The horses represent unbridled energy that must be directed and balanced by the man (you). The man is strong, proud and adventurous, maybe even a bit arrogant. The power in this card is the confidence that you can overcome any obstacle to achieve your goal. The structure represents the beginnings of putting things into context.

IX Hermit – Who they want you to be

My take: A bearded man sits, eyes shut, on the edge of a cliff. He holds a lighted staff. Sometimes we must take a break and get away in order to see more clearly. We look inside ourselves for the answers. We must be careful not to retreat too far and use the light to lead us back.

The card: Removing oneself to meditate on the current circumstances and gain perspective from examining ourselves. The light shines deep into the recesses of our minds to shine light on it’s mysteries. We need to remember though, that this step is part of the journey, not the end of the line.

II Priestess – What You Want

My take: The priestess is a mysterious card. She looks deep into the recesses of her subconscious for answers and represents our psychic connections. She seeks a deeper understanding of herself and her world.

The card: The priestess represents the path to our subconscious. The darkness of the card represents our fear of the knowledge our subconscious holds, or even the existence of it at all. The two pillars on the card represent the duality of our conscious existence, always categorizing things as one way or the other. Our subconscious cannot be directly confronted but must be approached through meditation and openness. Then and only then may we get a glimpse of what lays beyond.

X Wheel – What you get

My take: Although beautiful this card doesn’t speak to me clearly. The wheel looks like the innards of a clock and so reads as the wheel of time. All things come and go and so goes the wheel. I have more to learn about this card for sure.

The card: The wheel represents our fate, those things we don’t have control over. Change is coming. We must remember that although there are things in our life we can not control, there are many more that we can. We must not submit to the fates, not buck against them but find our way to our potential.

Reading Analysis:

– The magician could represent my therapist and my need for her to help me to wade through the clutter of my life, past present and future.

– Faith is the challenge that I face in this situation, so I will need to be open to new ways of thinking about things and look carefully for the meaning in things. I must be careful not to get stuck in my old beliefs.

– I am feeling a very strong urge to leave the past behind me and move forward on a new path. It is encouraging that this is in the what’s possible position, which means I actually might find that new path.

– I got here because all of these emotions surfaced for me and I sought out this new relationship. It is possible that this whole thing this summer, was my subconscious telling me it is time to make some changes.

– Recently I decided that my current path was not satisfying. I do often question why it is that I can’t be content with where I am. I have a great life. Why is it never enough?

– A party in my future? Hmmm.

– I do have confidence that I can accomplish my goals. I started this blog because I knew there must be more for me. It may not be an easy road, but I am confident that I can find my way.

– I relate greatly to the hermit. Numerologically it is the card that represents me and this makes sense as I am naturally a little introverted and introspective. In this context it represents what my therapist wants from me. In this I think it means I need to step back and gain some perspective.

– The end result of this is change. This reading has been full of the looking within cards, the priestess, the hermit, the wheel, the magician, faith, and the four of cups. The Wheel reminds me not to get too caught up in this, but that I have control over the outcome as well.

Note: The information in the “my take” and “reading analysis” sections are only my thoughts. I am learning and these may not fully represent the cards true meaning, just the feeling of card to me, which is a lot of what reading the tarot is about, but I write these before looking at the meaning of the card. Many of the cards that show up repeatedly in my readings are starting to solidify in their meanings for me and you will see that my descriptions of these cards are more consistent in my readings, but my take on cards that don’t show up as often are still evolving and changing in my mind and their descriptions will change over time. In the analysis portion I am practicing applying the cards to the specific circumstance. Please take everything I say about the cards with a grain of salt.

This is a cover and cross reading, using the first 10 trumps and the I-X of Cups, examining my heart’s desire.

The Spread

For this reading we will be using the following cards…

I-X Trumps (Major Arcana)
I-X Cups

The spread is a cover and cross layout. Shuffle the trumps and cups seperately and them deal up the top cups card in the covers position and the top major arcana card in the crosses position.

The Question: How am I doing in my love life?

The Cards:

Covers: III Cups
Crosses: XI Justice

The Answer: This indicated you come to a mutual agreement. Raise your hand if you’re sure. [HUH?]

Examination of the cards

III Cups

My take: A pyramid of three cups sit amid a party atmosphere. Masks and beads lend to a feeling of mardigra. Letting loose, free wheeling, having fun, spending time with friends.

The card: Celebrations, good fortune, social rituals (weddings, births, deaths etc), beware of overindulgence.

XI Justice

My take: A woman with no eyes, wearing armor, hold a set of scales. The sky is dark and stormy and scales contain bright lights. Everything is in balance. A resignation to what may be may be. You are armed and ready, although you may not totally see what is coming yet.

The card: Justice, fairness, making the world a better place, fighting for the little guy, beware of being too judgmental.

Reading Analysis

I am always so off with the Justice card. It confuses me that a card that appears so often for me, just doesn’t resonate or stick me. I guess it could also just be that it speaks to me in a different way. I always want to think of it as balance instead of justice and fairness. Hmm, we will have to keep our eye on this one.

As far as the cards go, my marriage is very much about fairness and teamwork and working together to better our lives and positively influence those around us and this weekend we had two parties and saw many people we love.

Really, never anything too dramatic when it comes to my love life. My husband and I are solid. We are best friends, comfortably intimate and truly a team. We love each other deeply and just like being together. I can’t even imagine not walking through life with him. We are truly lucky.

We are now moving away from Wands and onto Cups.  Cups deal with personal relationships and emotions.  The next several readings will deal with the people around me and my relationships with them.

For this first Cups reading we will use the I-X of Cups and return to numerology to select the card.   I will be using my first name and “adding up” the letters in my name to determine what card represents how I am doing in my personal relationships.

Karin

11+1+18+9+14 = 53 = 5 + 3 = 8

VIII Cups

The Answer

You tend to get involved in structured, open-ended relationships.  You like a structured framework around your relationship, allowing you to speak your mind.  Your best friends will be like thinkers and people who you feel you can share all your secrets.

Sidenote:  Your future involves making a departure of some sort.  You will travel to see someone at a distance.

The Card

*My take:  A figure climbs a set of pillars resembling stairs.  Eight cups are laid out on the floor below.  The “stairs” seem to be leading to the moon.  The sky is dark and starry.  You are departing, leaving on a journey, whether physical, psychological or emotional.  The cups, representing the people in your life are waiting at home, supportive and grounding.

The card: Following a new path always requires abandoning something.  The eight cups represent that that you are abandoning, whether it be a project, relationship or situation.  The moon represents an intuitive leap.  The man is nude, indicating a primal connection to his intuition.  Basically this means that your current path has come to it’s logical conclusion and now it is time to look to the moon (your intuition) for you new path.

Reading Analysis

Well, my life now is revolving around my new path and trusting my intuition to lead me to it, so this card makes sense, but what it has to do with the current state of my personal relationships, I’m not sure.  I have a feeling that the path that is coming to an end has to do with me only taking care of my kids.  Maybe by taking this new path, I am leaving behind some of the focus on everyone else around me and turning some of the focus on myself.   I can’t help but feel a little guilty about this.  This new path will definitely be a departure from my current existence.  In the answer it discusses what I seek out in friendship and that is generally a correct assessment.

* Please remember that I am learning and so the “My take” sections are my impressions after looking at the card.  These will change and come together with the real meanings as we go.  My goal is to come to a general meaning that resonates with me and coordinates with the card’s meaning.

For this reading we will use the same cards as for reading 6 to find out what is in store for me from a business perspective.

The layout

Use I-X of Wands and the first 10 major arcana cards, kept in separate stacks.

This is a three card reading, laid out side by side from left to right.

Position 1: Shuffle and deal the top card of the wands stack. This position deals with the past.
Position 2: Shuffle and deal the top card of the major arcana stack. This position deals with the present.
Position 3: Shuffle the remaining wands and deal the top card. This position deals with the future.

The Question: What do I need to know about my business life?

The Spread:

Position 1: VIII Wands
Position 2: VI Lovers
Position 3: II Wands

The Answer

In the past, the message you sent, now attracts the attention of others, and in the future changes come from higher up.

The Cards

VII Wands

My Take: There are eight wands surrounded by eight doves flying through the sky. This is a movement card. Things are in motion.

The Card: Great energy and speed. You are inspired, clicking on all cylinders and moving toward your goals. The path you are searching for is revealed to you.

VI Lovers

My Take: Sex, passion, two people being very intimate.

The Card: A relationship of any kind, especially a lover. Sharing one viewpoint with another. Attraction of opposites. A partially revealed mystery. Being Vulnerable.

II Wands

My Take: There are two windows with steps leading down the center. The path is guarded by two wands. What path will you choose?

The Card: Power held in reserver. The path is in front of you but you haven’t decided what road to take yet. You have the power to choose which window, but are not ready to move on it yet.

Reading Analysis

I have felt lately that my life is finally moving again and that I will soon figure out what it is that I am supposed to be doing for my future business life. I still am not aware what it is and am looking forward to this revelation. I know that it is coming and that I have the power to handle whatever choices I will need to make. It is nice to know that someone might be noticing me as I keep getting told that another individual will play a big role in getting me moving in the right direction.