Identity. The Stories We Tell Ourselves

Who are we? Who TRULY are we? Are we our package, our culture, our gender, our species, our multidimensionality?

I ponder this question, a lot. It has been the driving force in my own process of  theredefinition and reclamation of my expanded self.

My Oracle of Initiation divination deck is really a tour de force of reclaiming our multifaceted existence. The Oracle deck has fifty-six Painted Body images of one person. This one person happens to be me, but if you were called to do the deck, it might have been you. The process was the opposite of narcissism; it is a study in shape-shifting and moving between the worlds. If one person can get out of the way and become so many different personas and Spirits, who are the rest of us? How many being are co-existing within YOU right now?

{ To be really transparent, ALL of the images in this post are me…}

Early on in the recovery of my psychic skills I was hiking on Mt. Rainier in Washington State. I scrambled over a large logjam and two feet below me a little pine marten emerged. Now this was before I had truly reclaimed my intuitive knowing, so this experience was quite unique at that time. As I looked down at the pine marten, into its eyes, I knew I was that animal, Now, simultaneously with the earthly Melissa Weiss Steele dimension as well. I somehow knew we could exist in multiple realties, concurrently; and it seemed really normal.

I understand this may be a really “out there” concept for some folks. And, it may also FREE YOU. It is possible to move beyond the narrow constricts of our limited human perceptions, and recognize our vast, limitless, expansive potentials within many dimensions. We can break out of the small ways we all see ourselves. I do not mean small in the humble, simple, pure way, but in the limiting and constricting ways we minimize ourselves. We can let go of the old stories and become whom we have blossomed into.

“Identity” is one of these ways we can blind ourselves to our true essence. Most of us have been reared in societies that have been off kilter for many hundreds or thousands of years. There are layers and layers of cultural and familial disassociation that we have all inherited. I believe this is the time, as we move into a new world paradigm, that we are unpacking all of this disharmony. We are transforming millennia of disempowerment, disrespect, and disconnection into our true birthright as divine human beings.

I have some perspectives from my own process and work with clients to consider in redefining who you truly are, NOW. Lets do this today, together. Lets hold a larger space for who we truly are, not who we were five years ago, or last week, or even five minutes ago. It is the time to surf the waves of change, and we need to be very adaptable and agile to navigate this swift and shifting terrain.

Have you caught up to who you are now? I suggest we stop retelling those old, outmoded stories about our perceived weaknesses, injuries and limitations, and look at how we are operating NOW. You may be surprised by how much you have grown. Look for the evidence in your life for where you reacted differently from the past, and savor it. Let your friends  mirror how much you have changed, giving concrete examples to support your new thesis…the way you respond to life NOW.

Have you caught up to who other people are now? We all have our own stories about the other people in our lives. Look at them today, they may be different, really different. Folks are waking up and transforming at rapid rates, and you cannot tell who may see the world from a larger perspective than previously possible. This leads us into number three…

Own your projections. Projections are those shadowed characteristic, drives and impulses within ourselves that at some point we decided, or were told were bad. They are the unintegrated parts of our psyche that irritate or draw us in when we feel it within another. We all have areas in our lives where we perceive we have not excelled or are not being met. Money, relationships, career, personal development, physicality; there’s a whole laundry list.  I suggest in the redefinition process of the whole NEW you that we recognize the places we are judging or comparing ourselves to others. We ALL do this. If you tell me you don’t, I won’t believe you. Look at who you think you should be, or not be, by how you project your own insecurities or yearnings onto others. Both the people who drive you nuts, and the people you idolize. All are parts of yourself. Period. This concept is one of the central pieces within The Oracle of Initiation, I call them your Rainbows in the Dark. Many of the Oracle’s images were taken in subterranean graffiti tunnels, with gloriously vibrant hidden rainbows. Our Rainbows in the Dark are the full, passionate, juicy parts of ourselves that we have shadowed and shamed. Our greatest gifts and power reside in those rich and dark places, and part of the Universe’s grand plan it to help our true essences remerge from that hidden and cloistered place.

Redefine Initiation. Initiation is another word for something that changed you. It may be both a challenging experience or an ecstatic experience, but you stepped {or were thrown}through some sort of threshold and moved to a different level. I have been initiated by love, illness, death, fear, bliss, religion, group-dynamics, disempowerment, shamanic journeys, dancing, ethnicity, animals, marriage, insects, travel, creativity, dreams, sexuality, education, driving, weather, rituals…it could go on and on. We tend to think of it as a deeply challenging experience, a place where you find what you are made of. This can be true. There is usually an intensity to it, but not always. You may also be initiated in gently and subtle ways, so subtle you do not realize the change until years later. I was initiated as a child into the ways of the woods. I cannot tell you exactly what happened, but as an adult when I returned to my childhood stomping grounds I KNEW that place. I belonged to them. And that knowing was quiet and tender, and true. Redefining initiation is a process of reviewing the experiences in your life that sent you in a new direction. The places where you expanded, or constricted; the places where you were touched by something new. Most of us tend to hang onto the difficult things, so those are the places we really get to work to reclaim the treasures and lessons. Life is one huge story. Your life is a series of connection, orbits and destinies that I believe do all have some level of divine order. So a perfect place to begin with redefining you initiations is to see how the lessons within the challenge may have opened you  to new skills, levels of compassion or opportunities. As I said with the Rainbows in the Dark, I believe our greatest struggles hold our greatest gifts. We were given these experiences on a soul level to temper us and create depth and wisdom. The rub is most of us have not figured out how to turn them around…so just consider, and this really is a longer post on its own, that what you saw as a violation or injury was actually the opening to your destines in this lifetime.

Gain a larger vision of your intuitive responses. Your body is a huge antenna. It will tell you the truth, if you learn how to listen. We have all created a long list of how we translate different energetic and intuitive reactions within our bodies. When our solar plexus seizes, we say that is fear or anxiety. When our throat constricts that is a negative blockage or resistance to our truth. When we become giddy it is love, or an attraction to something. I have been working on this one for quite a while. My solar plexus is the center of my inner processor. My energetic messages come mainly through my gut. When I carried a lot of dissociation and anxiety in the past I linked the variety of physical sensations in that area to dread or nervousness. As I have learned, that’s not always true. I have become so open and receptive to subtle energetic patterns that I may be picking up on a shift in the earth’s ley lines as I walk, or be transmitting another’s emotional reaction. We are all, on some level, carrying the changes the culture, earth, energy matrix, and each other are undergoing within our bodies. This is a lot of weather flowing through-all the time. So don’t get stuck on a single sensation and globalize it. As Annie Rafter said here in Santa Fe, “if you make a whole story up around your impression, you tie a lead balloon to that interpretation.” Instead, say to yourself, “ah..a new sensation..hmmmm…”and just be filled with curiosity and wonder. You will free yourself with this one exercise.  {A note, there is a difference between the variety of impression and reactions that float through, and that core, survival instinct that says “Get the hell out of here.” That is different. Listen to that one, it is a great gift; even if it means leaving a job, a relationship or living situations.}

These are some things to consider as we stumble towards an expanded sense of ourselves, our world and each other. Maybe you can tell yourself a new story today, living the potential of NOW.

  3 comments for “Identity. The Stories We Tell Ourselves

  1. May 29, 2010 at 12:15 am

    Interesting perspective. I certainly do believe that most of us are “boxed in” early in life and often never challenge beliefs and customs. I wish you well on your journey.


  2. May 20, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    So brilliantly well put, M. The stories we tell, the names we wear. So timely and perfect to read this. Bless!


  3. Jordan Hoggard. . .et al tbd
    May 20, 2010 at 6:22 am

    The NOW as you express it here is WOW wonderful! No more a comparing of scars, etc. You expressed what feels to be THE nucleus of Isness. . .lifefully. I am swimming in the idea of Lewis Carrol’s “It is a poor sort of mind whose memory only works backwards” that you evoked as a present tense VERB!. . .mitochondria functioning forward in a powerhouse way of living. Rockin’ post! Much to marinate in. . .


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