This deathly virus is not the cause of my dark inner self, but being in ‘lockdown’ seems to make things worse, taunting my darkest feelings. I have lived alone for much more than a decade, so I should be able to adapt to these restrictions, and I thought all was well until a few days ago. It crept up on me, a sense of flatness, that feeling of lost enthusiasm and a lost sense of purpose. Inner-thoughts started to dominate my life, normal life ceased to matter and that calm, peaceful happiness left my spectrum whilst the mundane became the best feeling I could ever achieve. And those inner thoughts absorb me for hour upon hour, even days, when every spare moment will be filled with troublesome dark memories.
I find myself remembering old irrelevant thoughts from the distant past, tired old memories that no longer belong in my life and these thoughts are squeezing out my normal everyday matters. So in my minds-eye, I am re-enacting tired old plays or I run old scratchy black and white videos and none of them are a true representation of past events. My own mind has re-shaped a false narrative that imposes total responsibility onto my shoulders, and when you are your own greatest critic, well it all seems to make sense. The bizarre thing is that I keep allowing it, over and over again. I have almost given in to the idea that I will one day rid myself of this self-imposed penance. So I allow those ‘tired old films’ to take a firm grip of my mind and push out normality, whatever that may be, and those negative attachments play their miserable part in a dulling and numbing experience.
However, I am lucky. Over the years, I have learned to recognise my dark side, I can usually sense the ebbing away of my somewhat limited self-confidence, I lose the small comfort I have come to expect where peace and calmness helps me maintain a sense of usefulness. And when I find myself here, I must call upon the support of my guide who helps me meditate, who leads me in my relaxation techniques, helping me into a meditative state where I can healthily unscramble my troublesome negative attachments, take a more balanced view of these unsettling negative energies and to try to regain enough courage to over-power those demons that clutter my mind. So with the help of Michael, I embark upon a journey.
My meditative journey:
I never feel any sense of failure asking myself for help and I find the process of guided meditation an opportunity for healing, a chance to reset and give myself a stepping-stone to help me back to a more normal place in my mind. It’s not a magic potion, sometimes it takes a while, sometimes several journeys but I have never felt worse after practicing mindfulness. It merely leads me to a state of openness where I can gain a sense of relief, to just confront and accept that this is me and that sometimes I need a little help. Once in my comfortable, relaxing chair I soon find myself under the suggestion of meditation, soothing yet so powerful, all conquering, and soon my demons will be powerless and insignificant, no longer able to dominate my inner thoughts. The awareness of my breathing takes over as I think about my chest slowly rising as I inhale that warm air, such an automatic process but now I can celebrate every inhalation. And then I exhale, another automatic reaction as I close off the influences of the everyday, every breath increases the sense of calm as relaxation overcomes my conscious state commanding my body to relax even deeper. Deeper and deeper. Whilst I remain conscious, I allow myself into a deeper trance, still in control, still able to awake at any moment but preferring to go deeper and deeper as each breath carries away my tensions and concerns, melting away those negative thoughts rendering them powerless.
For me the most wonderful aspect of a journey through trance is I find myself in places of joy, places I love, safe places of beauty, places I yearn for, and yet places I have never been. For they exist only in my mind but I intrinsically know I am safe and in control. And my trance-like surroundings never disappoint me. It is a warm day and I can hear the babbling of a natural spring. I have never been here yet it is familiar, I am no imposter here, this is my place and my time and without distraction, it is just for me, and this is where I belong right now. Before me I see an obvious rocky path, winding along the banks of the small cheerful stream, I take great comfort from the soothing sound as the water cascades over rocks. Along the path, step by step I explore my oasis, I’m not trespassing here, nobody else is here, this is where I belong in the safety of my mind. A sharp turn in the path and the scene opens up, the gentle slopes descend before me, flanked by trees, wild flower meadows with lush grasses, the stream hurries over small waterfalls into deeper crystal-clear pools. I continue along the path, descending steps feeling safer and deeper. I catch a brief view of me ahead, yes me, ahead, further along the path. I am dressed in different clothes, looking most comfortable and with a sheen, a protective glow surrounding me repelling all negative energies, thoughts and feelings. It feels a little strange to be observing myself ahead.