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  • Writer's pictureAnnelisa MacBean

Transition Time

It can be compassionate and merciful to step back and acknowledge how much we’ve been through the past few years. Just being alive as a human being on the planet right now means we are all exposed to a certain level of activation in the body and nervous system.

For many of us it may have felt as though we're hooked up to a slow-drip of cortisol or adrenaline on the one hand, and a collapse into hopelessness/helplessness on the other – a kind of pendulation between hyper-vigilance and a numbing or shutting down.

Each of these responses and the bodily felt arousal that accompanies them are coherent and make sense given the conditions of our world. In addition to our verbal narratives and stories, there are the stories of the body (somatic narrative) and also those of the nervous system (autonomic narrative) that all weave together creating worlds of meaning.

Underneath it all, we share a deep longing to rest and to feel safe in our bodies, to re-tune and, when ready, enter consciously and un-rushed into the next phase. We do recognize that some previously secure things (politically, socially, relationally) are falling away that we will never be able to return to, but the exact nature of what’s coming next has yet to be revealed or understood. How to maintain a sense of balance in the uncertainty of transition??

This not-knowing where we’re headed can generate a deep, even cosmic sort of restlessness. As we enter 2024, we are collectively in a period of liminality and transitional space, in between the way things used to be and the birth of what is yet to come.

The temptation is to get out of the in-between and into the rebirth as quickly as possible. But if we bypass the reorganization prematurely, we will not be able to receive the wisdom and insight that is found only in the process of falling apart.

This is a difficult realm to navigate as dissolution, breaking down, stopping . . . dying . . . is not generally honored in our conventional and modern world. Death is not active. There is no doing. It is quiet and receptive. It is an embodied state of potential that will ultimately generate creativity, if full suspension of movement is allowed. Perched on a threshold, in-between, it is a unique opportunity to refine our sense of balance and poise, to fully experience the stillpoint that precedes the next moment of movement. During times of certainty and flow, the invitation for this heightened, delicate yet intense focus is not as obvious.

In the very center of the paradox and contradictory energies of life is the still-point, the eye of the storm, the calm, the breath, the bottom, the pause. It is a courageous journey into that territory and one that is always surprisingly familiar, like "home" when we rediscover it.

The journey may appear daunting, but the particles that survive surrender or pause in the face of urgency and fear will transform and re-form our neural network and create the soul-scaffolding of a new world.

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