I had an experience in the last week or two where I realised I was carrying around a significant burden of hurt that had accumulated over the last few years in a particular relationship. I was stuck on it getting resolved in a particular way.
I had already, last year, modified our practical relating to be more aligned with the reality of who we both are, but I was still holding onto the emotional residue of feeling unmet, disillusioned, confused, etc.
When it ‘leaked’ out into another situation, I realised it was only me who was carrying it around, and it clearly wasn’t helping anything. So I consciously chose to let it go.
The last few months had ‘ripened‘ me, somehow, into this possibility, for which I am so grateful.
I wrote out what I was letting go of, had a conversation with the other person to apologise for the leakage and let them know I was letting go and hitting reset on my backlog, and then burned my list.
It really feels done, gone. I feel lighter.
No matter what the future holds, even if I fall into some of the same relational dysfunction (cos I’m human!), at least I’ve set this particular burden down.
I’ve drawn a line in the sand.
(Lt. Hiroo Onoda, sword in hand, walks out of the jungle on Lubang Island, Philippines, after being formally relieved of his duties, nearly 29 years after the end of the war. March 11, 1974.)
In the Four Seasons Journey, we work a lot with the archetype of the Loyal Soldier, that protective part of us that stepped in, usually during early childhood, with a range of strategies to keep us safe, based on our environment and our family of origin.
These coping mechanisms were deeply intelligent and necessary for our survival as a young child. But they can often complicate our relating in adulthood, when we continue to enact them in response to current stimuli that trigger our childhood fears and concerns.
Yesterday I stumbled across these photos and story of a literal real life Loyal Soldier, Japanese lieutenant Hiroo Onoda, finally surrendering, almost twenty-nine years after World War II was over.
What took him so long?
What kept him on guard for THIRTY FUCKING YEARS after the real danger had passed?
“He was waiting for orders from a superior officer.”
He was waiting for someone with the true authority to tell him his job was done.
First off, what incredible commitment!
We all have this archetype within us, often very active in relationships where young parts of us feel endangered.
And this is why our first act is to thank our Loyal Soldier for their outrageous faithfulness to us… All this time, they have been trying to keep us safe…
And our second act is to take over from our Loyal Soldier, and begin the long, long journey of holding our younger selves with this outstanding level of commitment.
Some of my Loyal Soldier ‘strats’ that I witnessed recently include: withdrawal, shutting my heart down, keeping a list of hurts, dogging for everything to verbally named and dissected, blacklisting people who aren’t ‘trust-worthy,’ never forgetting! Etc.
But in making a list of specific letting gos, and somehow having been ripened/opened by Life lately (thankyou, Pisces Pilgrimage!), I was able to dissolve these Loyal Soldier responses, based on a true inner spiritual authority, and step into a brand new relational possibility.
CAPACITY TO NURTURE
Part of the Loyal Soldier dynamic involves a failure to recognise our capacity, how we have grown, how relatively ‘big’ and well-resourced we are compared with our Wounded Child self.
We have so much more capacity than we think.
You have so much more capacity than you think!
It’s habit, perhaps, to identify with your (Wounded) Child self, but Life is inviting you to shift that, to identify with your Nurturing Parent self, your Powerful Way-Shower self, your Loving Visionary self.
This is who you truly are now! This is who you are becoming!
Only you can be that true authority, who can appreciate your Loyal Solider for their faithful vigilance, and who can tell them it’s safe now to step down.
Only you know what happened, in the past.
Only you can convince your Loyal Soldier that this surrender is not a trap, not a trick, not propaganda from the enemy.
And you have all the strength you need, to do so…
Our task under this Full Moon and Eclipse is to TRANSFORM.
Scorpio is the Scorpion, the Sting. Scorpio points to the poison, the toxins, that can build up, especially in our relating, our emotions and our body.
Life is not interested in us carrying around these toxins for too long. It’s unsustainable.
Under this Full Moon, may we reconcile our relational accounts, and keep them short.
Forgiveness is a form of self-love.
Forgiveness transforms us, and those around us.
Forgiveness, setting down the burden, changes the story, forwards and backwards in time.
Forgiveness is an Act of Power.
LETTING GO CEREMONY
(Modify with your own brilliant, intuitive ideas!)
Write a list of your letting gos, perhaps as part of a Full Moon Eclipse Letting Go ceremony.
I made a start, below, but the more specific you can be, the more authority you have with your Loyal Soldier.
Make a note of any practical tasks that arise – conversations to be had, items to return – any ‘right actions‘ arising within you that will help you live out a genuine reset. Resolve to do these things in the near future, or get the ball rolling now (send that txt, etc)!
Read your list of letting gos to yourself. Or voice them to the fire, speak them into a crystal. Call in a friend to witness you, if that would add gravitas to your ceremony.
And then surrender your list – your paper, your crystal – to the elements: to fire, to air, to earth or to water. Let the Earth hold these things for you, in her powerfully transformative way.
LIST OF LETTING GO
I let go of any fears I have about letting go.
I let go of my attachment to this particular bundle of hurts and fears.
I let go of my fear of change.
I let go of (so-and-so).
I let go of my attachment to who they have been.
I let go of whatever I have been projecting onto them.
I let go of any pain in my body that I associate with them.
I let go of the emotional and spiritual ties that keep us locked into this way of relating.
I release us.
I let go of who I have been.
I let go of my past choices.
I let go of the patterns of relating that keep me stuck in this place.
I let go of my need to be right.
I let go of my desire to hold the other person to account.
I let go of my need to be seen.
I See myself, and I take full responsibility for my choices.
I let go of blame.
I let go of regret and wishing I’d done things differently.
I let go of framing myself as small, endangered and low capacity.
I have all the strength I need, to let this go.
I let go of my bewilderment at how we couldn’t fix this together.
I let go of my need to resolve things in a particular way.
I let go of any attachment to how we relate in the future.
I let go of this burden, I set it down.
I hand it over to that which is greater than I, with great, great thanks.
I release, I surrender, I let go.
I release, I surrender, I let go.
I release, I surrender, I let go.
So mote it be.
Thankyou so much for the presence you have lived with, the last few months. Your deep desire to grow and thrive. Your willingness to face fears. Your strength.
I honour your expanding capacity, and my own.
May we pass on love rather than fear, connection rather than disconnection, under this Full Moon.
May we be transformed, in the most loving and inspiring of ways!
Sending love, and go gently…