Going Through My Hate To Get a Taste Of My Love!
My Helper Session with Moira Shaw — 4/18/13
Note: I share this to give some insight to what I wrestle with in my sexuality. There may be things that are not quite correctly represented simply because of my own limited human abilities, and I may not have captured accurately what Moira was sharing with me in every case, but I trust that these meanderings may be helpful to fellow travelers along this Pathwork road of personal and spiritual development.
Gary: My Presenting Problem: Getting in touch with my self-hate – especially self-hate of the physicality of my sexuality, my sexual instincts. Moira: I send you a blessing that you get to the root of your self hate, your hatred of your physical sexuality. … Pause… And you will! … Pause… Gary: So you may wonder how I got here in my journey of life! (laughter)
Gary: Lot’s going on here – Pat’s surgery scheduled for April 23rd is uppermost. Then there are the many Mid-Atlantic Pathwork activities going on, including both a Pathwork Council Meeting and an Executive Committee Meeting earlier today, a Finance Committee meeting tomorrow, etc. – and I feel good about how all of these Mid Atlantic Pathwork organizational activities are going, especially strategically and how I am involved – not getting bogged down in the details. Moira: So you have a lot of peace about the Mid-Atlantic Pathwork activities and your leadership role in the organization. Gary: Yes, I have peace with the Pathwork and Sevenoaks organizational matters, and feel affirmed by those to whom I most relate in the organization. It is an inner Knowing of being on the right track with the organization. So although things in the organization are intense, I do not feel overwhelmed. If I can just be with issues at a strategic level, and not get sucked into the particular details, I am feeling fulfilled, that I am providing appropriate leadership. Moira: That’s beautiful, Gary. I am very happy for you.
(Observation: As I write this, I note that am more positively impacted that Moira thinks how I am working with the organization is beautiful – again I’m not valuing and trusting my own sense of how I’m working with the organization is beautiful – than I am positively impacted that she is happy for me and my seeing the beauty in what I’ve created here. Somehow Moira being happy for me (that I am experiencing fulfillment in what I am creating) is less impacting than her view of what I am creating being beautiful. It’s like she is cutting me loose to feel my own happiness in my own assessment that where I am with the organization is, in my own assessment, beautiful apart from her affirmation that “this is beautiful.” In some way I still cling to Moira’s approval rather than daring to enjoy my own approval.)
Gary: So with all this organizational activity being so fulfilling, where does the self-hatred come from you might ask. Pat and I have been having very intense conversations between us (our magical Coffee Times and at other times) and also with Sage and Anthony in our couple’s sessions. Many deeper insights have arisen. Yesterday (4/17) with Sage and Anthony I confessed that I was fixated on Pat’s unavailability early in our relationship. In my fixation I was not allowing myself to see her change even though where she was (unavailable) is no longer where she is today. So from the beginning of our relationship (1999) I was longing for a full relationship with her – intellectually, physically, emotionally, and spiritually – and was concluding that, since the physical and emotional connection with me did not seem to be there early on, that a full relationship with Pat would never happen, that she would never change in the physical and emotional domains of our relationship, the domains I so long for to complete the intellectual and spiritual connection we seemed to have.
This is where we were going into the call with Sage and Anthony, and as I was explaining this Sage asked if it was possible that what is happening here is actually projecting my own unavailability physically and emotionally onto Pat. Was I was getting by with my sense of disconnection by blaming Pat for not being available when actually it was I who was not available physically and emotionally to Pat. I could see the truth in this – that I was frightened in the physical and emotional area of our relationship and really not available unless she initiated or was obviously open to me, which she was not wont to do. To see my role in creating my pain in our relationship was painful for me to see.
Then I could see how, though it came about by my (not her) unavailability, I was resigned to never having the physical and emotional domains of my relationship with Pat met. Then this morning (4/18) as Pat and I were discussing my resignation to non-fulfillment of my relationship with her physically and emotionally Pat said that she does not see it this way. Rather, Pat experiences my feelings to be fiercer than what would be the case in more passive feelings of resignation. She said that what she sees is a fierceness in me against myself! It is too passive or neutral to say I’m simply resigned. The energy is stronger than that. I thought Pat’s words were brilliant in terms of the energy she sees in me. I can see the truth in this for me, saying “I am not going to be satisfied physically and emotionally in my relationship with Pat.” Or, “I am never going to be available to a Pat,” perhaps in a masochistic or defiant way against myself. All of this energy against myself is depriving me of true intimacy with Pat on a physical and emotional level.
Moira: Yes, this is fierce energy against your instinctive creative impulses. Sexuality is a creative impulse to Union, to Creation, and everything that is created comes from the union of the masculine and the feminine. So there is a defiance in you against creativity, against that creativity that is within you. It is very interesting. Carl Jung said in regard to sexuality that we have control over our parents through our sexuality. Your sexuality is how you want to control your mother. And there is a place in you that says, “I will not make myself available to Pat.” If you are fixated on whatever you didn’t receive from your mother, wherever she wasn’t forthcoming, you are going to hold that against her, and against all women, and most importantly against Pat. We control our parents through our sexuality. Gary: So I am fixated on what Mom did not give me. Moira: What you got from Mom isn’t what you expected. You expected 100 – expecting her to be totally 100% available – and her availability was short of that, so you made her 100 on the non-available side – in your dualistic consciousness you said she was 100% not available to you. She had no chance to meet what you wanted in availability in your dualistic either/or consciousness. If she did not give you all, you assumed she gave you nothing. Then you say, “If you are not going to give me 100%, I won’t take anything and thereby make you 100% non-giving.”
This, “Mom, you give me nothing!” reinforces your hatred of her and contempt for her. You then hate yourself for the way in which you are acting on the earth-plane. Jesus came here to learn how to be human. And you came here to learn how to be human. And you are holding onto, “I want 100%” (that is, I want to be “God,” I do not want to be human (part available and part unavailable). And I do not want to accept that Mom was human (part available and part unavailable). And so I’ll take nothing. The way Jesus became Divine was learning how to become human. He was undefended in his humanness. He accepted life on its terms. It is by accepting the limitations of the earth plane that you are going to eventually go into that unlimited plane experience of Unitive Consciousness (100).
But you are impatient. Like Lucifer – you are impatient. He fell not because he was evil but because he was impatient. He didn’t want to learn how to become human. Look at what you fear the most – you fear that you are going to get bogged down and are going to have to resign yourself to not having the bliss you Know is available. And in a way you are not going to have it unless you go through the Gateway of experiencing the “less-than-blissful” state, even go through the Gateway of feeling the fear of not having the bliss you Know is there.
Gary: It is so ironic that I so relate to the “Gateway Prayer” in Pathwork Lecture 190 at this point in my life. I do not want to go through the Gateway of “Feeling my Fear of No Bliss” to get to bliss in my relationship with Pat. Moira: That’s right. You are somebody that can reach in many different areas of your life a very blissful state, an ecstatic state, whether it’s going for a walk with one of your soul friends, or listening to a Beethoven piece, or your photography of wildflowers, or reading deeply a Pathwork lecture, or deep sharing during coffee time with Pat, or developing strategies for Mid-Atlantic-Pathwork – so you can easily reach these blissful states via many avenues.
But with your sexuality you are going to have to go through your fear that you are not going to reach and experience the bliss of sexual Union that you so long for. But it is not about Pat and Pat’s unavailability. Gary: Oh I know it’s not about Pat! I get that this unavailability is in me, it is MY unavailability in some way! Moira: So it’s about your fear, your taking your own responsibility for your fear of not ever being able to reach and experience that blissful Union through your physicality that you so long for. Gary: And, again, this has nothing to do with Pat.
Moira: So be with your fear for the moment. Very deeply take responsibility for your feelings of fear that you won’t reach that blissful sexual union through your physicality. (long pause) Gary: What I notice when you say “Gary, you can attain bliss in so many areas of your life” is that when I butt up against this fear of not achieving this bliss in my own sexuality, then I displace that bliss I truly long for in my sexuality onto one of those places where I do have bliss. Moira: Yes. Gary: So when I butt up against this fear, then let me read another Pathwork Lecture where I know I shall be infused with joy, or let me go take pictures of wildflowers, or listen to Beethoven, or drive a new car, or do something… Moira: To take care of the fear. Gary: Yes, anything to get away from this fear of expressing my sexuality that wants to arise instinctually and naturally from within.
Moira: So you distract yourself. And you are cheating in a way. You are misusing these beautiful experiences you have in order to avoid going into the fear of your own sexual expression, your despair, your feeling of hopelessness and helplessness and disappointment that you are not already arriving at that state of blissful union in your sexuality. That misuse of your blessings would cause your guilt. If you are using these beautiful experiences of photography and music to avoid your fear of your sexuality, you feel guilty about that because you are cheating life. Gary: Right, and because I am cheating life by not facing the truth of my fear and despair I feel undeserving of blissful union in my sexuality. Moira: While that is true, I would rather you stick with your feeling guilty before life.
Gary: That is so well said when you say I am cheating by misusing my areas of bliss. Moira: Yes. So instead of cheating and using your bliss areas that way to avoid your fear, if you could stay with the fear, undefended – the feelings of despair and hopelessness. Because I really do think that your sexuality and your finding union through your sexuality is one of your key tasks in this lifetime. Finding connection through the physicality in your body – a kind of spiritual union, but you are going to have to go through the messiness of the physicality, and the limitations and the distortions of it in your sexual behavior, go through all of that and accept that the expressions of your sexuality are limited and distorted right now. But if you can truly accept that this is where you are – blaming Pat, etc. – and see this as a passage. Your distortions in your sexuality are not anything to judge or hide, but it is all part of the journey that you are going through to reach this state of accepting this human state of sexuality. And being willing to go through your distortions in your sexuality, and you will find that connection you long for, you will!
Gary: I can understand this in theory, but how do I really own that while not knowing. Do I just have to jump blindly into the abyss? Moira: No! From Pathwork Lecture 60 The Abyss of Illusion – Freedom and Self-Responsibility, not until you have understood, worked through and dealt with your pride and your self-will in regard to your sexuality and your union with another, and relinquished those lower-self aspects, can you then jump into the abyss.
There is a lot of fear in you around your sexuality, but only because there is self-will and pride around sexuality. You cannot let your powerful sexual feelings arise spontaneously but rather you seek to control your expression of your sexuality via your self-will and pride. From the perspective of pride, you want to be further ahead in your sexual maturity than you are. You want the same experience in the union with Pat sexually as you get from reading a Pathwork lecture or listening to a Beethoven symphony, and you simply are not there yet. So there is pride: “I want to be there!” “I demand that I be there!” “I don’t want to have to go through all my distortions around sexuality.
Gary: And to see what blocks me, too, from going through all my distortions – judging my sexual instincts, not allowing expression. Moira: So is it “OK” that you have distortions of all sorts in your sexuality and, say, fantasize, or … ? Gary: My distortions around my sexuality have not been up for me of late, so maybe I am too busy with my distractions to allow them to arise! (laughing). Moira: Yes – so much time with the Lectures, with all your work at Sevenoaks – all keeping you from your sexual feelings. Gary: Yes, I need to be with my instinctual sexuality! Moira: Yes, but while you are in your instinctual and distorted sexuality you are judging it. You are wanting to be not there, you are wanting, rather, to experience a totally unified experience in your sexuality – intellectual, emotional, physical, and spiritual. And, again, you are not there! And you are afraid you will never be there. Gary: So rather than feel my fear, disappointment, sense of helplessness and hopelessness in my sexuality, I satisfy myself with the “less-than” substitutions – like all the work I do for MAP, or reading a lecture, or writing a blog entry, etc.
Moira: So let’s go back to your mother and your punishing her for not being a better mother. What didn’t she give you that you are refusing to forgive her for? Gary: I would say I do not forgive her for not being available emotionally, for not giving me an education about sexuality and its centrality in one’s being, the beauty of sexuality, for no physical contact … Moira: All of those things hurt you deeply, creating blocks, so they were very powerful, so would you say that you would get back at the woman in exactly the same way that she really crushed you, by not being available to her emotionally, not really wanting physical contact, rejecting her, fixated on her not really being available? Gary: Yes, I can see that.
In our sessions with Sage and Anthony we went to the surgery that was coming up for Pat on April 23rd and asked ourselves, “Can we just be in the space of my saying good-bye as she is being wheeled off to surgery?” We were visualizing being eye-to-eye in this space, and I did not know how to be there. There was just a big cloud of numbness there in me. Moira: So you are saying, “No, Pat, I am not going to be available to you emotionally.” “I’m going to punish you.” Gary: Wow. That’s a lot to own. Moira: “I won’t let you off the hook.” Gary: And I will tell myself and others that I can’t be there with Pat emotionally when in fact I won’t be there emotionally. Moira: Yes. Even if you don’t feel it totally, just to try it on, then you are not a victim of your childhood or anything else. You are saying, “I won’t be there emotionally.” Gary: And to get the piece, “Because I want to punish you.” Moira: Yes. “Now I have the power. You (Mother, Pat, whomever) have had the power to withhold from me, but now I have the power to withhold from you. I’m going to withhold my beautiful powerful loving nature, which I have. I have the power now! You rejected me, now I reject you.”
Gary: And this brings me up to another piece, Moira, and that is that people will say, “Gary, you’re such a loving person.” But I will not hear that! Moira: Sure. It would make you feel too guilty if you connected to the fact that you are a loving man and are choosing to withhold that beautiful love. Gary: I deny that I am a loving person because denying that I am a loving person, believing I am not a loving person, makes it OK to withhold love simply because I am under the illusion that I have no capacity to love. I can see my wrong conclusions, my misunderstanding, and my illusion by which I rationalize that I don’t love simply because I am not a loving person. I claim I do not have the capacity to love rather than see the truth that, although I am a loving person, I am choosing to withhold love from the other. The truth would make me feel guilty for not allowing my love to flow to the other.
Moira: That’s right. If you were to connect to your true nature and face yourself, seeing that you have this loving physical connection so available to you, and if you had to face the fact that you just withhold it out of spite and out of power over someone, you would have to really take a step back and say, “Wow, what am I doing here!” But as long as you don’t connect or identify with being the loving person you in fact are, you don’t see the truth of the situation, namely, that you are a loving person but holding your love back. Gary: As long as I can get off the hook by saying, “I’m just not a loving person,” I miss the truth that I am a loving person and that I am choosing to withhold that love.
Moira: I can imagine the exact way that you would have wanted your mother to be towards you from her core. And you have that exact way in you! I can see you looking lovingly at Pat as she is going into surgery, even just stroking her head, making the physical contact, giving her exactly what you would have wanted and were missing from Mom, as described in that beautiful Pathwork Lecture 155 Fear of Self – Giving and Receiving. What you have to do is not only give love to yourself now, that physical and emotional contact with your own being, but also to give it to the other. That is what is going to fulfill you today. Just touching her, stroking her, lovingly blessing her as she goes into surgery. That’s going to fulfill you. That is going to end the self-hate.
Gary: There are two pieces here. I think the self-hate comes from the unconscious knowing that I am withholding. Moira: That’s right. That’s right. Not withholding something you do not have but withholding who you are in your Essence. If you did not have this potential and were still developing it you wouldn’t hate yourself because you would not be withholding anything – you simply didn’t have it. The broke man does not feel guilty for not giving money to another broke man, but a rich man does feel guilty for holding back the riches he has from a poor man. In your situation here you in fact you have this capacity to love so available to you, you Know it, you Know what was missing in your life from your mother because you know what it’s like to give it. You know what was missing in your life with your ex-wife. You couldn’t miss it if you didn’t have that potential in you to give it. Gary: This is so important to see, that I couldn’t miss it if I didn’t have it to give. Moira: That’s right. And by not giving it you stay lacking, you stay unnourished, unnurtured, unhealthy, and unfulfilled. Gary: Right.
Gary: The other piece is that when over the past few days in working with the Gateway Prayer (from Pathwork Lecture 190), the only dimension I could not really relate to was feeling hate. I could feel fear, loneliness, and all the other negative feelings one goes through to find bliss, but I could not feel hate. I just thought that I must not be one who hates. Now I see that perhaps hate is one of my main issues to experience, explore, understand, and grow through and out of.
And I can also see that I am afraid to let out any capacity in me to love. Does that make sense? Moira: Only in the sense that if you let your love out then the jig is up! Then you could no longer deny that there is a capacity to love residing in you as part of your Divine Essence! So wanting to deny that you have a capacity to love would make you fear letting love out. You want to stay in and identify with the illusion that you can not love and not face the truth that you can and do love. The fear of letting the love out is a mask hiding the real you and keeps you from letting the love out. At this level the fear is a mask.
Moira: So just try that state on, get into, “I am going to hate Pat, I am not going to give her anything!” Just get into hate as an emotion, “I am going to HATE.” Gary: I can see how this gets into hating women in general, I brought this hate in and used it against Mom. Moira: Mom held the power, she withheld something that you knew existed somewhere (you knew it existed in her because it existed in you), and you saw that it wasn’t forthcoming, and you’ll never let her forget it. Gary: And with Pat, it’s as if I knew she has this capacity for intimacy and physical love. She held that power. I knew it was there. But I experienced her as withholding this love. And this angered me. My first attraction to her wasn’t that she was so mushy and loving, but rather I saw her capacity for being loving. And that deep intuitive knowing brought me into the relationship with her, or so it seems.
Moira: If a person has that capacity for deep loving, that person also has that capacity for deep receiving of love. It works both ways. Giving and receiving love are the same thing. So here, Pat’s capacity for receiving your love also attracted you. You saw that she was willing to receive your love, and here is where you could use your power to not give it. That is what attracted you to her. Her capacity to want it and her capacity to also give it were there, but it was your intuiting her capacity to receive your love is what turned you on, because then you could withhold your love. Pat is a very gentle being, a lovely being, she is very special, very receptive, and that’s what excites you. It excites you from two standpoints. One is that she would be receptive to you, but also that’s where you could withhold. You would not be interested in someone who would not be receptive to your love, receptive to being loved. It’s negative excitement: “Oh good, she wants it, I fixate on the time when she didn’t want it.”
Gary: In other relationships when the woman had the capacity for the physical reception and wanted my emotional connection as well, and I said, “No.” I would withhold the emotional connection piece. I would say, “I’m not ‘in love,’” but I would not be open to the notion of, “Could that change in me?” It was as if I was withholding in any relationship that could be a whole relationship, complete in the dimensions of the physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual. There always had to be missing pieces for me to be in a relationship. I would find women who would have the capacity for a complete relationship, the relationship I said I longed for, so that I could somehow withhold. This is a lot to be with.
Moira: Do you have a fear that you can’t go through this hate and then turn this hate around to love? Gary: I have a fear of going into the hate, fearing that there would be no end to it. I fear letting myself enter the waters of hate. I would get lost in my impulsive instincts to hate. These feelings have to be controlled! Moira: OK, we know what that means – that you don’t want an end to your hate. There must be a negative intent at the moment to not turn your hate around, because then there is no end to it if you don’t want to turn it around. You intend to keep your hate rather than risk turning it around – your negative pleasure in hating. So what you need to do here is to say, “I pray for the capacity to know that I can turn my hate around, that I can ignite that Divine Spark in me, and bring it to my hate, to my intention to withhold and to use my power in this hateful way. I bring my light to it.” The more you do this, the more the intention to turn your hate around will be there. Even though it may feel mechanical and insincere, to pray to turn this around, to say, “I want with all my might to turn this hate around and to love and to bring out in me who I am, to be all that I can be!” do it anyway! Pray! With that positive intent, then there is not going to be a fear that the hate is bottomless. It’s only bottomless if somewhere in your Soul you do not want to turn your hate around.
Gary: Yes, and I remember one of the lectures said that while there was no end to the positive benign spiral, there is always an end to the vicious negative spiral. Moira: That’s beautiful. Gary: Know that you will come to the end of your negative intentionality. And if you got on the positive side of that, there would not be an end to positive intentionality. Moira: Yes. Gary: I see the importance of prayer in allowing this turn-about to happen. Moira: Yes. Yes. Yes. AND to stay with the fear of not turning it around. Stay with that fear, even though you know what is going on. Stay with the fear of not ever being fulfilled sexually in the way that you can be on the Earth plane. The fear of not being fulfilled, of not being able to turn around that fear and that hate, to stay with that fear and hate knowing that while you have that on the one side on the other side you are continuing to work at praying to turn it around. Visualize turning your hate around. Stay with letting both sides be there: both the positive intent AND the fear of not turning the hate around and having what you want and deserve and what you will have. You will have what you long for.
Gary: This is an awful lot to take in, Moira. But it feels very very deep. Moira: It is very deep. And it is very beautiful, Gary. So to give love to Pat, even if it is mechanical, don’t worry about its being masky, just give your love to Pat through your words, through your touch, even if it comes out a little bit stilted, that’s OK. You are exercising the love muscle that you have let atrophy for these 70 years. Gary: I like the principle in Pathwork, as elsewhere, “Fake it until you make it.” Moira: That’s right. To voluntarily, willfully, do it, and then eventually it will become a spontaneous movement from within. Gary: Yes, you do not have to let your hatred out because that is being honest. Rather, do the right and decent thing, but know that while you are doing the “right and decent thing” you are not yet being honest. Know that you are faking it and you will be OK. Moira: Right.
Gary: Pat’s birthday was Monday (April 16), and I got her a card a couple of months ago (long before we knew she would be having major surgery). When I saw the card it just felt right, and it seemed to be a card that I could grow into as her birthday approached. On the outside were the words I wanted to grow into: “I appreciate you, cherish you, and count you amongst my greatest blessings – Happy Birthday.” At 3:00 AM on Pat’s birthday I awoke with a start and the words for the blank inside of the card welled up from my Soul … “April 16, 2013 – 67 – Dear Joy (to each other we go by the nicknames ‘Joe and Joy Peabody’ – two ‘common Joe’/Joy ‘peas in a pod’) Day by Day, Awakening to the Mystery that Love is. This is our destiny. May we experience this Profound Truth In all its glory as you enter your 68th year. May we increasingly come to trust the Love that is there in the field that is US. Love, Joe
Moira: That’s beautiful, and just keep writing and speaking this way, even if it feels a bit awkward, or a bit “off” or disingenuous and unnatural to you. Keep exercising that love muscle. After all, it is so natural to you. Gary: That is good to know too. It is good to consider the possibility that this capacity to love is in me and is, in fact, so natural to a deep part of me. Moira: Yes, that’s right, it is so beautiful when you consider the possibility that this love is part of you, part of your Divine Essence. Gary: And yet part of me just refuses to own this fact that Love is part of my Divine Essence, or rather, refuses to believe I had a Divine Essence, and rather somehow sticks with the identity of hate and all the pain and guilt that hate brings with it. [I am faced with my humanity, my being merely and utterly human – to accept all of me in this lifetime.] Moira: Well your love is beautiful, and I shall certainly hold Pat in my prayers on the 23rd. Gary: I appreciate that. This entire incident is bringing us closer together. Moira: How courageous she is, to go through this surgery and working on this at the same time. Gary, many blessing to you and Pat. Gary: Thank you so much. Your blessings are deeply appreciated.
Shared in love, Gary