99 Pathways of the Heart

Pathway 10-Al-Muqtadir – Embodying Power in Action

This is an interesting pathway and it found me on a day where I received some very deep and sincere messages of thanks and praise from clients. I’d read this pathway in the morning, and simply it’s reading was enough to echo within me when I received the messages. I was reminded of the Tao Te Ching where Lao Tzu says, “Once the work is done, it is forgotten.” And the significance of remaining humble in the face of praise.

This pathway talks of the role of the spiritual guide, and also the idea of being unassuming with the use of our power. It first explains through a story that spiritual guides sort of come in, use their power to help a situation and then leave as quickly as they entered the picture not stopping for thanks. I loved this analogy because it resonated very deeply for me. I love this way of working because it allows me not to get distracted by what people think – whether it’s good or it’s bad makes no difference. You go in, do the work, get out and move on the next person. Best way really to stop your ego getting in the way of the work.

The pathway then talks about the Author’s experience of someone who was a great example of this unassuming power. The person in question, “expresses an example of divine power in action, without spotlight or publicity.” This was a very learned and spiritual man that he talks about, and by speaking to him you would never know it. He came across as just a regular guy. I love this because that’s how personal spirituality is and maintaining it this way for me is inspiring.

When you do “Spiritual” work I think there is almost a stereotype of what a “spiritual” person should be like. If you know me, you know I don’t go in for all that claptrap because I think firstly that you should be yourself (warts and all) and secondly, it’s such a personal thing! I think it’s very easy to make assumptions about what a person should eat, pray, live like in this field of work, but at the end of the day, we are all human. And the more human you are, the more it matters in this work. It’s one of the reasons I veer away from spiritual communities as such because I believe in being peers and not in a hierarchy.

I started thinking about the role of the Teacher or Guide in all of this. After all, that’s sort of how I see myself although I’m not entirely comfortable with the labels and the titles. I’ve come across many teachers and guides. Some good, some bad – My view is that it is all experience where at the time I did judge it this way. I wrote a piece a while back on the importance of taking what resonates with you rather than allowing yourself to be led on a merry dance by a guru. I tread cautiously in this field and feel like I’m exposing vulnerability in saying this to you, but to acknowledge you have influence is humbling and to be honest, overwhelming.  I remember when I first started writing this blog and I had no idea who was reading it. I did it purely for myself and even now when I write, it is purely for myself but I’m conscious that you take in what I say which is why it comes with the health warning! You’re not going to agree with everything and that’s cool. We may outgrow each other and that’s cool.

HOWEVER! You know when someone points a camera at you and says, “just act natural”…? Well, I liken my experience to this. I am aware now that people are reading and that really pushes me to remain in authenticity and I think that’s a good thing. I could quite easily spout shit about how perfect I am and how my life is so wonderful, but it isn’t about that. As well as being a teacher, I am also a student of life. Sure I have life credibility and wisdom, but I still have so much to learn and I am still finding my voice.

I think when you first get in to this kind of work, you feel as if you are sacrificing a great deal in order to “save humanity”. I certainly used to feel this way, but this is all ego based and sort of playing the martyr and wanting recognition for the work. When you’ve been doing this work for a while, you begin to understand that it really isn’t about the appreiciation or the praise. It isn’t about being validated in this way. Neither is it about the criticism or fear of being different. Those are all things that are external to you and take away from the real reason why you do what you do.

The reason why I do this work is because it is an expression of the beautiful gifts our Creator has bestowed upon me. I feel that the situations I’ve experienced were placed in my path and the choices I made led naturally to this work. The beautiful by product of expression is the ability to help people simply by that gift flowing through me. It all sounds so perfect and wonderful, right?

Of course I can say that now! At the end of the day, we are all human and human beings have a need to be needed because it gives us a sense of belonging.

If you’ve come across this by Rumi, then you’ll understand perfectly.

“Knock, And He’ll open the door
Vanish, And He’ll make you shine like the sun
Fall, And He’ll raise you to the heavens
Become nothing, And He’ll turn you into everything.”

Essentially, for me this pathway is about surrendering your ego. I think this can be challenging sometimes because the human in us really wants to take credit for the feats that we’ve accomplished. That’s ok and we need to be aware when this is happening. When all is said and done, we are an expression of the Divine energy. It moves through us and it is surely through it’s grace that we are able to influence positive change in others. It is this energy that is expressing through us and our work. It’s beautiful but being the flawed humans we are, we have a tendency to get in our own way when it comes simply allowing it to flow. There’s ego’s to battle, and fear to overcome, and all sorts of healing interspersed between the moments of pure magic. It would be boring if it wasn’t this way!

This growth comes in the form of our nature, our character, our actions, our words, our behaviour. The way we carry ourselves is all important, and humility is sacred. It isn’t about playing small, because you have the greatest force moving through you. It’s recognising it’s the force and your ego has an influence on how you use the power you’ve been given. I learnt this early on in my career and with power comes responsibility. And we can only be responsible for ourselves.

They say empty cages rattle the loudest. I remember in the early days of running my business, I was at a mind, body, spirit fair. I’d just qualified as a Reiki practitioner and was there talking to people about Reiki. I love meeting and chatting to new people so I was going round talking to the other stall holders, as you do.

I met this woman on a stand who was a healer and Reiki Master. Having recently qualified and being as enthusiastic about energy healing as I am, I could feel my hands tingling. So I said to her, “My hands are starting to tingle.” Her response was one that made me realise the importance of humility early on in my career.

She said, “Yes. It’s because I’m extremely powerful.”

Erm…right. That floored me and I didn’t really know what to do with it. All I knew was that it made me feel uncomfortable and awkward, and didn’t leave me better than it found me. I’m sure she was powerful, but I remembered this incident when reading through this pathway. The Power isn’t something that belongs to us, and so is never taken for granted. It’s a blessing that it flows through us. It isn’t something that needs to be announced to others. It isn’t something to be proven or imposed upon others. It resides in all of us. It makes me uncomfortable to a degree when attention is drawn to it. Balancing this acknowledgement of what you’re capable of with and surrendering your ego is where it’s at for me. In Sufism it is called Nafs, and this is the first battle.

“When we find ourselves in situations involving healing or another outward, obvious use of power, others can project the archetype of hero or heroine on to us. If we accept this, it is a big step towards forgetfulness.”

It isn’t that we are not accepting of praise. It is more the acknowledgement that we would not have this were it not for the grace of God. Regardless of whether it is praise or criticism we receive, it should not affect us. On a personal level, I find it really challenging when people are singing my praises because from a young age I was always taught that all praise is to the Divine. That, and I struggled with self-worth for a long time and so of course that’s a comfortable idea to me!

As we work on self-worth and acknowledgement of who we are and the gifts we bring with us to this world, we learn to accept praise so that we know our value and our contribution. We surrender our ego and remain in gratitude that this power has been bestowed upon us. We humble ourselves in that we recognise that we will always be learning how to use it. We work on healing ourselves so that we can be the purest channel for that beautiful energy and we focus on our intention simply being the expression of our true selves for the highest benefit of all we encounter, including ourselves.

When I teach, I make it really clear that we as healers are not doing anything at all. We are simply observing the power at work through intention. The intention is always for the highest benefit of the person we are working with. It has nothing to do with us. We place our trust in the energy, in Source and know that the power of this is greater than anything we can do as human beings or even spiritual beings.

I love this pathway as it serves as a reminder that “We are as the flute and the Music in us comes from Thee.” Rumi, again!

99 Pathways of the Heart, Healing

Pathway 9 – Al-Qadir – Holding the Center

So some of you may be aware that I’ve started writing regularly on the Ascension energies and as I’m beginning to really commit to living that experience and sharing what I’m finding, these pathways seem to be another way in which the road is being lit up for me. Holding the Center for me is about how I hold my own energy whilst feeling everything inside and outside of me. It’s about knowing that there is a constant for me and that constant is Creator.

As humanity evolves, we experience changes. We are connected to everything, and everything is connected to us. As the world changes, we are required to strengthen from the inside out in order to play our part in supporting the evolution of this great planet that we are on.

Ascension, the way I see it, is the growth and purification of your soul. All souls are experiencing growth and purification in this physical realm. This comes to us as life experiences, emotions and connectedness. We are all at different points on the same trajectory and as our awareness grows, we expand. We become aware of this energy that we are and we begin to take responsibility to consciously experience this expansion, whatever it brings. We know that we are more than just a body. We are a soul travelling, experiencing this reality physically in order to grow, learn and purify. As we awaken and become more aware, this process is one that we willingly and deliberately undertake. We become conscious of what is happening and become curious as to how. We don’t begrudge feeling it because we know that it is part of our spiritual path. There’s millions of people across the planet all experiencing similar themes and evolutions and so for me, it confirms that we are connected and that collectively we are moving through the different energetic stages required for our transition in to the next life.

My belief is that the soul has lived for eons before the physical body has. It has it’s own route map and contains the blueprint for this physical life. This connection with your own soul allows you draw down the information you need for this physical realm. Some of it we’re aware of and some of it we are not. We have our own individual blueprint, but we also have the greater blueprint which is for the collective. This is why when we are ascending, we will be dealing with our own issues as well as dealing with collective issues. I could write a whole book on this so bear with. If you are interested, there’s a few people I can recommend that you follow. Vaz Sriharan and Amanda Lorence are the key people I follow because they are genuine, authentic and what they say resonates. Find who feels right for you.

I’m really starting to feel a real connection and synchronicity between choosing to explore these pathways and the Ascension energies that I am experiencing. It feels that every time I reach for a pathway, it corresponds with what I’m feeling energy wise with this collective ascension as well as on a personal level. It’s curious, and interesting and I wonder if it will always be this way or whether it is coincidental. I do believe that there are no coincidences though, so only time will tell. It all seems to be fitting really well together for the moment, so it’ll be interesting to see where this goes!

Moving in to this pathway, it talks about “power” and this power is different from life force energy in that it “actively changes manifested reality.” Again, I feel great resonance and power with this because it is active exploration of the pathways that is supporting my evolution on a very practical level. This isn’t something I am doing necessarily on purpose. Creator is at work in all things and when you see everything as a manifestation of Creator at work, it allows you to move with the flow and with more ease of action. You feel as if you are being directed towards your path and you feel lightness and speed when you act. Maybe that’s Divine inspiration. All I know is that the actions that are Destiny Driven feel effortless. The heaviness is not felt so much with these actions and so this creates joy.

It’s funny because I still stand by what I’ve said about not really knowing where this is all going. None of that even matters. I do what feels good for me to do and it leads me to the next thing. When I listen, I am guided and very much driven deeper in to this path. It is the joy of exploration rather than having any expectation of any outcomes. This is a very different experience to the resistance from the past. I feel as if I am beginning to understand what it’s all about and the key is the learning. Yes, sometimes you do need to move through the heaviness, but even that is a gift from Creator. You learn to feel the difference between that Power at work your own forging of the path. It’s just a knowing and a drive to do something, even when you feel terrified. There’s a power that’s taking you through it, pulling you through.

As you read the pathway, it tells the story of a Dervish who was out one day observing nature and could see how Creator provides for each living creature. He resolves to go home and wait because surely the Creator will provide. This waiting comes to nothing, and he realises that it is action that activates the power of Creator to provide.

This ties in to this idea of expectations. We have an expectation or a feeling, and then it doesn’t transpire. Action is the key ingredient to being able to see this power in action. The same applies to manifesting in the physical form. Without action, there is no direction. There is no activation of this Power energy. This is something that I am learning in so many ways. My own healing sessions have brought up this energy strongly, and everything that I am learning and doing reinforces this idea of acting on what feels right rather than waiting for something to be revealed.

Expectation can be challenging as it takes us out of the learning and in to an idea of how something may appear to us. As we know, nothing in life is like this and so when we focus on wholeheartedly committing to the action, without any expectation of where it will lead, we suddenly open up this space of acceptance of all possible outcomes. There’s something quite magical about that revelation for me. It is about doing for the sake of doing, for the love of doing and for the joy of doing. There is no transaction here as there is no expectation. This has it’s own rewards and as you experience this pathway you’ll learn that there is so much to be gained from this realisation.

The human mind will always have an attachment to outcome and sees everything as transaction or exchange. The trick is to focus on the joy and the love of what we do with no expectation. That is how we direct the powerful force and see it at work for us.

“In all cases, this pathway helps us to remember that it is really the One Being working through us that accomplishes what needs to be done.”

99 Pathways of the Heart

Pathway 8: Sacred Surprise

Pathway 8 – Al-Awwal – Sacred Surprise

 

So I pick up this series again, and as the pathways always surprise me and give me what’s relevant, it’s no surprise that the book opened me up to this pathway. The pathway is all about being open to the unexpected, and it is fitting for me at this time.

You’ll have noticed quite a long breather between pathways and that isn’t for lack of trying. I’ve been thinking about delving in and writing quite a lot, but the timing for picking it up again just hasn’t felt right, up until now. Spring Equinox has helped. Bringing in the light and I feel like I’m slowly waking up and getting ready to burst in to action! It has been an intense period of hibernation and hermitting!

The words that hit me when I read the pathway was, “You thought you were going in one direction and toward a specific goal, but a mysterious doorway has appeared that seems to lead in a new direction.” This made me think…

It’s interesting this, especially for me. I’ve never really known what I wanted until the moment it came upon me. I have vague notions of a future that includes a few things that I can think of, but if you asked me the question, “What is it that you want?” I would respond with something as general as World Peace. (I do want that!) If you asked me what I wanted for my own life though, I’d have trouble articulating this to you. I don’t know unless I can feel it, or it comes to me in a vision and it feels like I’m being pulled to pursue it. The not knowing helps with the element of surprise!

There are some things I know and feel absolutely certain about. My work – I know I’m doing what I’m meant to be doing although even that is bringing me unexpected surprises and veering off in different directions. My purpose – I know why I’m doing what I’m doing and I’m feeling more and more connected with a sense of belonging to this world in a way I’ve not felt before. My contribution here on this planet – I know what I am putting in to the great vortex, and the sacred surprise on some levels is showing me all that I’ve put in coming in to fruition. I have no idea what it will produce, and so this pathway leads me to just enjoy the element of surprise.

I’ve never been one for planning. I think I may have mentioned this in a previous blog. I’ve managed to reluctantly insert some semblance of structure in to my day, but I’m a fly by night, flaky, free spirit and by the way, I see that as something to be celebrated. Rules, structure, discipline – even the words send a shudder down my spine! It took me the first two years of being self-employed to get my energy out of that structure, and lo and behold, the Universe is taking me back there, surprisingly!

I’ve had a battle with structure and organisation for most of my life. I know when I’m driven by feeling something is absolutely right, it will get accomplished. I work quickly and it’s done. There’s other things that I know I avoid for months, and they take me an hour to do. It’s the wonder of the Universe, and it’s the power of motivation. There’s an energy that drives you in a certain direction, and the pull of it is difficult to resist. It may lead you to somewhere unexpected. It’s what you do when you get there that matters and how you see it. This is what I’m about to delve in to.

I don’t have any real plan which may come as a bit of a shock. I’ve surprised myself at getting this far in life without a plan. I’m not even sure if I have a direction. Being an “in the moment” kind of person, I go with the flow but then get frustrated because there’s little progress to be seen.

Life is nebulous at the best of times, and this pathway offers an inspired way of approaching the unexpected. To see it as a redirection of focus and above all, to understand that this unexpected doorway is dragging you to the next place. You can go willingly, or you can go kicking and screaming. There’s always a choice!

I like to think I go willingly, but meditating on this pathway I couldn’t help but laugh at myself because I know that I resist change. Change can be difficult for all of us. I feel like I’ve undertaken a massive transformation over the winter months, and for me seeing whatever comes and going with whatever I am inspired to do feels like the best way forward. I am working on not holding any expectations, and for me this pathway is an opening to being able to see and read synchronicities, as well as accept them. It’s following through with action – that’s the kicker!

For the logical and rational, it is difficult to follow the signs. If you’re mind brain orientated, it’s sheer foolishness to live by the breadcrumb trail. This is life we are talking about, and to put faith to the test, what better way is there than to follow the signs? It’s one way of doing it, and a way that’s as plausible as any other suggestion for how you live your life. So I decided to put this to the test and see everything that happens over the course of a week as a pleasant surprise or a redirection of focus. As the book says, “Suddenly, like Alice in Wonderland, you are in an entirely different Universe.” Interestingly, I re-read the pathway after I wrote those words, and the sentence after it says, “Or, perhaps through sudden inspiration you feel called upon to initiate some process or to start a project totally unlike anything you have done before.”

Now although I kind of live my life like this, I’ve not really done it on purpose before and so this will be an interesting experiment!

My first unexpected was finding a video testimonial for my meditation course and so I shared it. I found myself starting a new project to rewrite and relaunch the course. Hmm…ok so that’s not mindblowing but what happened over the next couple of days really was.

It was as if I was waiting for the fog to lift. I know for the last couple of months I have been hiding behind the clouds just doing what’s necessary and looking for something that felt just right. That’s one of the reasons I wanted to pick up on these pathways again because they assist my growth and help me to explore my understanding of life and the Universe.

I meditated on this pathway. I took it with no expectations and just went with what I felt like was the right thing to do. I noticed certain words in conversations that linked to things I had seen or taken notice of earlier. For example, I was on a FaceTime call to my dear friend Tomasz in Poland and he told me “Pisces season is over honey and you have to stop being a hermit now. It’s time for action!” In front of me in my journal, I had written the exact same word – Action. I took this as a signal that it was time, but then I went to sleep accomplishing nothing that day.

I woke up a little more energised the next day, and found myself ordering a planner. How very unlike me? Go with it, Hafsa. I meditated on the pathway again, and I found myself moving operations to my desk. My habit is to get all snug and cosy on the sofa with my laptop when I work, which of course means that I am surrounded by distractions and although some stuff gets done, it’s not the most productive place to work!

The next day I found myself out and about, and rather than looking at my desk, I made a Green Tea, topped up my water bottle and found myself at my desk writing. “I have arrived!” I thought. The desk has been ready for months, and rarely gets used so I freaked myself out a little. Sitting here working for some reason feels different – different good though.

Sacred Surprise indeed! Trusting that you’ll move when the time and energy feels right is a beautiful thing. Actually  moving and doing that thing feels amazing because it is a follow through and a release of resistance. At least that is how it feels for me.

The flip side of this is understanding that all that procrastination, all that resistance is there for a reason. Sometimes, sacred surprise comes in a way that feels like it is literally the end of the world. When these things happen, it’s much harder to keep that same perspective.

As hard as it is to believe, even the shitty experiences are for our highest benefit. Without them, we wouldn’t be led to the good places. I can see this and an essential part of the pathway for me is this idea of taking the good with the bad. Seeing everything as merely experience for your highest benefit is a good way of looking at things. It’s quite a challenge when it’s falling apart, but we always come through it and we are always where we are meant to be.

What if the Universe is always leading you and guiding you? Of course it is but how often do we take that seriously. It’s easy to get caught up in life. I believe in this idea, and I think although I live, work and teach this – being human and having a mind gets in the way. I think it’s part of self-mastery and I’m gutted to think that for the  most part, I’ve missed the signs and signals but fate is such – it had to be that way. My lesson with this pathway is definitely to always be reminding myself that the signs are there – I just need to look and follow through.

To surrender in order to be guided is a challenging aspect of self-mastery and one that I know I am always working on. We are human at the end of the day, and we will forget and slip in and out of awareness.

The most important thing for me though, and I wish this for all of you too, is that we find wonder and magic in Sacred Surprises, knowing that all the dots are joining up even when we can’t see them!

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