” Reactionary behavior only happens when beliefs are underlain by doubt”– Esther Veltheim

For a long time I attempted to justified my existence on Earth. When I was younger I entered (and won) writing contests and art contests. I constantly strove to prove myself by my accomplishments. I was a bit of a troubled, emotional kid who was intensely private (for a lot of reasons that are probably evident by many of my writings now). Through my writings and art I proved myself. I wasn’t troubled– I was an artist. An artist who had her work up in the school hallways, an artist who got flown down to the state capital to read her short story.

When I got older I justified my existence by earning a ridiculous amount of credentials and taking every course, workshop opportunity, reading every book, pamphlet, and joining multiple groups in order to prove my worth. I was never showy with what I learned– I was actually pretty embarrassed at how young I was and how much I had accomplished. People would frequently ask me (and still do) how I got so many credentials in such a short period of time and quite frankly if it were solely up to me I wouldn’t have. Kundalini energy can be really intense, and a powerful force to drive someone forward in really dramatic fashion. But yet there still was this desire to have the highest credentials, take the most advanced classes, become the most advanced practitioner in my field that came solely from me that I take personal responsibility for.

About four years ago this all came to a screeching halt. All of a sudden I didn’t want to do anything. I want through an extended existential crisis about how small I was, how insignificant I was, and all the accomplishments in the world in the grand scheme of everything, in the totality of the cosmos was simply a drop in the ocean of divinity, no matter what I accomplished. All I wanted to do was sleep, to enjoy the peace, to no longer take classes or workshops or achieve anything.

Although I still take courses (the ones that interest me on occasion or when I need continuing education requirements for my license) there is no longer a sense of needing to prove who I am. Through the last four years I have gone through and thrown out (or scanned) old notes… read, sold, or given away hundreds of books that I once owned, dropped out of most of the groups I was in, and no longer have any interest in competitive spirituality, in justifying who I am as a healer or an artist or a person.

I see this same justification for existing residing in most of the people I meet. Since my focus is on spiritual communities, I will focus there, but it really shows up in a multitude of ways in many arenas. At a certain point I read the quote above “Reactionary behavior only happens when beliefs are underlain by doubt” and it really struck me. Anyone who knows me or my writing knows that I am not a quoter– I prefer to speak from my own direct experiences. But this quote was a catalyst to me understanding this need for justification of myself for so long, and why others have this same need.

When we are who we truly are… when we have no doubts about who we are… when we understand that we are valid as who we are… we no longer have to prove ourselves to anyone. We can just emanate who we are. We do not react if others question who we are. When we understand that our spiritual experiences are valid, we no longer have any doubts and can act from that place of validity.

When we do have doubts, when we have self-worth or self-esteem issues we are constantly in this reactionary space, in this space of needing to prove ourselves and justify our existence(s), That person who constantly talks about what they achieved, the person who creates drama by saying what a “Shaman” or how “awake” they are or how everyone else but them is “stupid” or “playing” in groups is reacting from a place of trauma and a place of doubt. The person who is engaging in conversation in a yoga class or meditation circle (or just in a regular social situation) where the topic goes to spirituality or esoteric-type matters who announces who they studied with and how long they have been meditating still is in a reactionary place of self-doubt.

We all have trauma, and it is healthy to have doubts and to deeply consider our spiritual experiences and if they are valid or not. But when we know who we are we do not have to justify ourselves. We can merely speak our opinions without interjecting our teachers names or how long we have been studying, we do not have to call ourselves “awake” or “enlightened” to others, we do not have to start up conversations about how attractive we are, how good we look, how in shape we are (or not), how we are a Shaman or healer or our certifications and licenses and jobs and how we feel others are objectifying or being reactionary or creating drama because of our loud proclamations and justifications about who we are. We can just simply be. 

When I started my path 15 years ago doing Reiki I was really worried about how I would be perceived. I found that along the years the more I accepted myself, the less difficulty that people have with me and what I do. Now, if someone comes to me I can simply tell them that they have spirit attachments, or an ancestral curse, or are going through a Kundalini awakening (or whatever the case may be) and 99 percent of the time people listen to me and accept it. The same goes for my physical practice– when people came in wanting Acupuncture I used to give them Acupuncture. Now, if I know that they need CranioSacral Therapy or integrated therapies I simply tell them. My point here is that the more we accept ourselves the less outer chaos, the less flak we will get from others. Much of our drama, our feeling not accepted or judged is coming from our own chaos, our own non-acceptance.

When we are who we are we can simply emanate it. We can emanate our power. We do not need to justify it, or ourselves. Other people will sense and know who we are by us simply being who we are.

When we fully know who we are and no longer have self-doubts or self-worth issues… when our own inner chaos stops… when we fully embody who we are in our daily lives… the people surrounding us who we perceive judging us or ridiculing us or creating drama will stop (99 percent of the time).

When we are who we are, when we no longer doubt ourselves or our experiences, when we have confidence and fully embody who we are to the outer world… we no longer have the burning desire to achieve, to prove our worth through workshops and certifications and gurus and books and groups and jobs and possessions and proving our superiority about a subject in groups and social circles. We can just simply be. We may still take courses, or interact with others, or be in groups… but it is from a place of certainty of who we are.

When we are who we are without doubts we can notice when others are reacting from their own self-doubt. When they still need to prove themselves, when they are still in the vicious cycle of proving their self-worth, proving that their existence matters, that they matter. And we can have sympathy for them and all of the chaos that is caused because of this.

The truth is that most of us are still trying to justify our existence. And we do not need to. We are perfect the way that we are. We can always learn more, know more, be more… but we never need to justify ourselves, to create chaos and drama in a constant attempt to try to prove ourselves finally worthy. We can step out of this vicious cycle and simply be… whoever and whatever we are at this very moment. We can emanate that. Be secure in that. Have confidence in that. And when we do that reactionary cycle, the chaos and drama in our lives that is fueling and proving that we constantly need to justify ourselves and our very existence will stop.

We can have self-love, we can have certainty about who we are. When all of the violence towards ourselves stops we come to a place of peace in our lives. We move forward with the certainty of who we are and what we are intended to do here in our short lifetimes. We can still achieve, we can still do. We just move from a place of inner knowing in our lives. We no longer need to justify our existence to ourselves or anyone else. We can just simply be.