Grieving - Examples of How The Process Works
"This grieving is not an intellectual process. Changing our false and dysfunctional attitudes is vital to the process; enlarging our intellectual perspective is absolutely necessary to the process, but doing these things does not release the energy - it does not heal the wounds.
Learning what healthy behavior is will allow us to be healthier in the relationships that do not mean much to us; intellectually knowing Spiritual Truth will allow us to be more Loving some of the time; but in the relationships that mean the most to us, with the people we care the most about, when our "buttons are pushed" we will watch ourselves saying things we don't want to say and reacting in ways that we don't want to react - because we are powerless to change the behavior patterns without dealing with the emotional wounds.
We cannot integrate Spiritual Truth or intellectual knowledge of healthy behavior into our experience of life in a substantial way without honoring and respecting the emotions. We cannot consistently incorporate healthy behavior into day to day life without being emotionally honest with ourselves. We cannot get rid of our shame and overcome our fear of emotional intimacy without going through the feelings."
Quote from Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls
Grieving is a natural part of the human healing process. In Chapter 1 of the online book which I am publishing, Attack on America: A Spiritual Healing Perspective (link at bottom of page), I urged people to wail and scream and sob, to release the energy that was being generated by this traumatic event. Trauma is a shock to the system. Any type of trauma suffered by a human being - trauma to our physical bodies, witnessing a traumatic event, experiencing a loss (death of a loved one, house burning down, end of a relationship, etc.), etc. - causes emotional energy to be generated in reaction to that trauma. Denying and suppressing that energy does not make it go away.
"Feel your feelings and release them. Give yourself permission to let it all out. Wail and scream and sob. Try not to let the messages of an emotionally dysfunctional society, or the discomfort of emotionally repressed people around you, keep you from owning the grief to the fullest. They want you to pull it together and get yourself under control so they will be comfortable. Let it out! Release it! Do not shame yourself for it, or apologize - it is marvelously healing to grieve. Owning our grief is part of being True to self. In an emotionally honest society Dan Rather would have been crying and sobbing on his own program - serving as a role model for others - instead of keeping up appearances and stuffing his grief until some of it leaked out on the David Letterman Show." - Attack on America: A Spiritual Healing Perspective Chapter 1
In that article I also did a little yelling about the importance of owing our grief.
"If I see one more person on television starting to get emotional and then choke it down and apologize, I AM GOING TO SCREAM!
Please feel your feelings. Let those sobs out. We are supposed to feel. It is healthy to grieve. Breathe right into those feelings. Sobs are little balls of emotional energy being released. If you breath into the feelings it breaks up the grief and the little energy balls of emotions can rise up and be released from your being. That is good. Keep taking deep breaths. Get into a rhythm. Inhale, sob sob sob cry cry cry as you exhale, inhale, sob sob sob cry cry cry - that is good. That is healthy. Do not shame yourself for feeling. Do not apologize for your feelings. It means your human. It means you care. Sobs, tears, snot from the nose are all ways of releasing energy and cleansing chemicals out of our body. Grief is not a pretty sight - but it is a beautifully healing and a Loving thing to do for yourself. That emotional energy does not go away just because we stop breathing and choke it back down. It does not disappear. The more you can release, the faster you can move through it. Watch the History Channel some time when they interview vets from World War II or something like that. People who have never really grieved will get emotional and choke it back down 40 - 50 years later, because they never released it. It didn't go away, they have been repressing it and denying it all those years. Release it now. It is healthy. It is the Loving thing to do for yourself. Amen." - Attack on America: A Spiritual Healing Perspective Chapter 1
In this quote, I refer to the breath techniques for releasing grief that I talk about on the web page Grief Process Techniques - path to love & forgiveness and in the online column Emotional Release Techniques - Deep Grieving. In this web article, I am going to share some example of how the grief process works.
Life events such as the September 11th terrorist attack on New York City and Washington D. C. are very traumatic. It is important to own our feelings about life events, rather it is a horrific event such as the terrorist attack or if it is some other kind of traumatic loss - such as a relationship break up, or loss of a job, or whatever.
What makes owning our feelings about traumatic events in the present so difficult is that we have unresolved grief from the past. Because society is emotionally dishonest and we were trained to be emotionally dishonest, we are all carrying grief from our past. That grief energy is trapped within us in a pressurized explosive state that causes us to feel terrified of tapping into it.
The way to stop reacting out of our inner children is to release the stored emotional energy from our childhoods by doing the grief work that will heal our wounds. The only effective, long term way to clear our emotional process - to clear the inner channel to Truth which exists in all of us - is to grieve the wounds which we suffered as children. The most important single tool, the tool which is vital to changing behavior patterns and attitudes in this healing transformation, is the grief process. The process of grieving.
We are all carrying around repressed pain, terror, shame, and rage energy from our childhoods, whether it was twenty years ago or fifty years ago. We have this grief energy within us even if we came from a relatively healthy family, because this society is emotionally dishonest and dysfunctional.
When an event in the now triggers our old grief issues it makes it very difficult to understand our own emotions unless we are relating to ourselves from a healing framework. If we are in recovery from childhood wounds, then we can sort out our internal turmoil - then we can have discernment about which part of what we are feeling is about what is happening now, and which part of it is grief from the past that has been triggered.
It is important to understand our emotional process - and what grief entails - to see ourselves more clearly so that we can choose to respond in a healthy way instead of letting our emotional wounds be in control of our life by just reacting. Then we do not have to stuff our feelings or apologize for them because we are able to see ourselves more clearly and respond in healthier, more appropriate ways.
Quote from Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls
Grieving is a great relief
Grieving is a great relief. Releasing repressed, pressurized emotional energy that we have been denying and avoiding for years is the path to freedom from the past so that we can see the present with more clarity. Getting emotionally honest with ourselves is the key to clearing our inner channel to Truth. It is necessary for us to be willing to heal our emotional wounds in order open up to Love - to tune into the higher vibrational energy of Love and Joy.
As with everything else in life, there are different levels of grieving - and different stages of grief.
The deep grieving of sobbing and crying and snot clogging up our nose, is an incredibly powerful part of the healing process - that can bring wondrous relief, and physical exhaustion in it's aftermath. Normally after a session of deep grieving a person will feel lighter - sometimes immediately, sometimes the next day - because some energy they have been carrying has been released.
The explosive release of this deep grief when done in a healing framework - that is when we accept and own it as opposed to shaming ourselves and apologizing for it - is a very powerful part of the healing process. It is terrifying to our ego because it feels like a complete loss of control. Our ego programming is to stop it, to stuff it.
When our deep grief issues are triggered and we are at the point where our voice starts breaking, we automatically shut down - we close our throat and stop breathing, or go to very shallow breathing. This is the point where it is so important to learn to breathe directly into the energy so that we can start releasing it. When we take deep breaths into the grief energy, it starts breaking up and little balls of energy are released. That is what sobs are - little balls of energy.
The more we have integrated a Loving Spiritual belief system into our relationship with life and with our own emotions, the easier it becomes to align with healing through grieving instead of aligning with the false beliefs that it is weak to cry, that it is shameful to lose control.