Heart Opening Moments

BLOG of a Spiritual Stripper

The Only Way Out is Down

Don't see a way out? The only way out is down...toward the CORE

“The Only Way Out is Down.” – Sanctum, by James Cameron

I’m usually draw to action adventures where the hero has to face impossible challenges in order to find the grace of freedom. In this story about cave diving, a group of explorers found themselves trapped in an unexplored cave unable to escape from the way-in due to an unpredictable storm. The entranced was sealed shut and the cave quickly filled up with water. With only limited numbers of SCUBA equipment, they were forced to share breathing devices and dive-down deeper into the unexplored caves – hoping to find a way out…

James Cameron always has a way to bring psychological depth to a seemingly simple story to inspire a viewer’s internal dialog towards one’s spiritual freedom. In a way, in this movie I saw myself.

I often find the path of spirituality consists many dead-ends, not to mention you can never go back through the way you came in. If you were lucky enough to taste the absolute clarity of enlightenment once, you have probably been lured in by an addictive force to seek that clarity again and again – each time falling deeper down into a darker abyss. Like the cave explorers, draw to an invisible force to explore uncharted territories. Spiritual teachers will often tell you the benefits of a spiritual practice in terms of “better health”, “mental clarity”, “inner bliss” and so on, sounding like only positives will come through the journey. But they often omit the best part of the story – encountering the demons along the way.

I’m here to tell you a different story – the hidden dangers await – like Sanctum. If you have not stepped in too deep yet you might want to turn back. If you have lingered a little too long, like me, the way-in has already been sealed shut, so instead of struggling and beating down the way-in thinking it is still the way out (or often in the movies die a painful death), it is now time to find another way out.

The bad news is we will encounter various demons living within the cave of your subconscious mind. Like Caroline Myss suggested in her book Sacred Contracts we must face the demons without running away. We have to see them with loving, non-judgemental eyes and try to understand why they were there in the first place – usually because they have helped us and protected us in the past. Then we must face why our demons not longer serve us and now only hinder our progress – again, without judgement. Only with total honesty we can then move on to a new level of understanding. Each subconscious cave connects to another. Be aware, when you finally find some breathing space in one cave, the storm will rush in and rob you your sanctuary. The only way out is going deeper down again, into the next cave. Darkness will be experienced, so lighting a candle to help you meditate is often a good idea. Demons will come out of nowhere and attack you when you are most vulnerable (trust me, God is good at writing adventure thrillers) and if you put up a fight with your ego, you will lose (just watch the movie, the stubborn egotistical people usually die with painful bitterness), the only way out is DOWN – now courageously head to the next dark cave you go.

Every once in a while you might feel as if all the demons are gone and you got the world wrapped around your finger. If you are lucky, the blissful sanctuary won’t last, you will be forced to dive deeper down again. To be completely honest, recently I’ve been feeling as if I’m so close to become a permanent citizen of heaven, only minutes later a demon strikes again. My old bag of tricks of food and exercise addiction, finding a boyfriend to comfort me, pack up and move away no longer worked now. Interesting enough I no longer have a desire to choose them. As I listen to Adyshanti‘s guidance, I’m learning to trust this natural process of falling – falling into grace without putting up another layer of armor. A few days ago as I cried my eyes out and thought my life was over, somehow as I fell deeper down into the abyss of emptiness, entanglements within me started to untie, I was able to breathe again.


Freedom is near.


Warning: This path is not for the faint of heart. The only way out is down – down into the core.

I will meet you there.

December 24, 2011 Posted by | Choices, Death & Rebirth, Inner Growth, Self Realization | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Aikido Reference to Spiritual Meaning


Strength + Softness + Flow of Ki = Aikido

“As long as you perceive that anyone is holding you back, you have not taken full responsibility for your own liberation. Liberation means that you stand free of making demands on others and life to make you happy. When you discover yourself to be nothing but Freedom, you stop setting up conditions and requirements that need to be satisfied in order for you to be happy. It is in the absolute surrender of all conditions and requirements that Liberation is discovered to be who and what you are. Then the love and wisdom that flows out of you has a liberating effect on others.” – Adyashanti (Zen master)

Responsibility = continuous commitment on the path

Liberation = ability to move about freely, powerfully

Stand free of making demands on others and life = keep yourself balanced, free of external support as in a strong kamae

Freedom = ease in movement, not muscling through techniques but using the grace of inner strength, soft sensitivity and the flow of ki to dance through techniques

Happy = extension of energy as an expression of love

Surrender = let go expectations if a technique will work or not

Discovered = realization of how the technique has miraculous worked with NO EFFORT

Who and what you are = the technique worked because it was a part of who you are, you are ki, your ki is the universal ki

Love and wisdom that flows out of you = the expansive energy unrestrictedly expressed in all movements

Had a liberating effect on others = this is when uke took a hard fall but it didn’t hurt at all, and he stood up with a huge grin on his face!

That was something fun to share. Now re-read the first paragraph and think aikido. Cheers!

December 16, 2011 Posted by | Aikido Wisdom, Inner Growth, love, Self Realization | , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments