A couple days ago I wrote about my latest breakthrough around vulnerability, actually I wrote it almost as it was happening. To give some more depth, I want to talk about my coaching experience when I worked with Destin (as a student) a couple years ago. In our first session, we went through a guided visualization where I was introduced to my “ideal self,” the full empowered and actualized man inside me. On that first day, this archetype of my ideal self told me his name – “Dark Knight.” Or at least I thought it was “Dark Knight,” how else would it make sense?
Rewind several years. I was just recently separated from my first wife and the people I had trusted bailed on me. At night, in the dark, I felt the weight of that vulnerability and experienced panic attacks for weeks after. I didn’t face them, I distracted myself and ran from them. I tried to cover up the fear.
Over the years following, I built up a good life, but sometimes the feelings would come back in the middle of the night. As I experienced my awakening and let go of so much baggage, it seemed the feeling was gone, I’d faced my fears and found strength in that vulnerability. But then this happened – it was different because I was physically incapacitated, which was a whole different experience with vulnerability.
I realized I hadn’t truly been facing my fear – losing that sense of being in control. I was still, in many ways, operating from the ego, from a lower level of consciousness. Now I was experiencing this fear and facing it head-on, because I knew what it was now.
And this is where it gets interesting. I accessed my “ideal self,” through an NLP anchor, and he spoke to me: “How does it feel now that you’re embracing the Dark Night?” “Dark Night,” as in the dark night that brings on the vulnerability and fear. My “ideal self” is the “Dark Night,” the facing of the illusion of my ego, the existential terror, and the embracing of vulnerability.
So my “ideal self” was in fact not some ego-based character, but my heart’s true desire – to completely let go of the ego and the desire to feel in control. And because this was too much for me to handle at the time, my heart hid this in an archetype that seemed pleasing to the ego. In fact, the truth is much more powerful than anything I could have imagined at the time.
Last night I accessed “Dark Night” again and saw a column of light running through me and extending further into the darkness above than I could see. Everywhere apart from that column of light was pitch black. I have no idea what this means, so I’ll keep letting go, keep walking my path and surrendering. I still feel the ego in me, but it’s more of an annoying distraction now than the boss of me.
It’s an interesting twist, and a beautiful awakening, even if my back pain still really, really sucks.