A Quick Review of Last Week’s Lesson.
If we don’t have a strong Vm PFC we can’t develop it to where it will better fend off our impulsive and oftentimes unhealthy reactions/actions. So, what do we do? We engage.connect with safe people (and we engage in activities that restore our nervous system to homeostasis).
When we reside more in safety, our brains will create more connections to the ventromedial prefrontal cortex and integration with our threat detection center (the central nucleus of the amygdala). When we hang out with people who are trustworthy and make us feel safe, our brains will respond.
We can also explore these activities to improve the connection and integration between the VM PFC and the CeA:
Learn a second language
Explore lucid dreaming
Ask someone to be our external “hard drive” while we work through issues
Learn soothing breathing patterns
Be of service to others
Address explicit and implicit Adverse Childhood Event memories
Week Four Sacred Relationship Workshop
Last week we explored the Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex and the Central Nucleus of the Amygdala and how they work in relationship to each other. We need the Vm PFC to keep us centered in the present moment, able to access our executive functioning hardware. We can only access it if we are in a ventral vagal state: one of rest and digest, calm, able to socially engage, connect. We cannot very well access our Vm PFC if we are in a state of protect: fight/flight/freeze.
We would do well to explore those things that calm the nervous system and create a sense of safety in our bodies.
Christ Consciousness In Sacred Relationship
Whether or not you believe that Jesus was the Son of God and died on the cross for our sins, you can still look at His life and teachings as a guide to how to live the fullest expression of yourself. Jesus’ lessons were radical for His time and are still radical in our time. Many of His teachings have been “sanitized” so that they fit church doctrine. Please keep an open mind as we explorensome of Jesus’ teachings that dovetail into The Science Of Social Safety. What He taught and modeled (and at times commanded) that we do are brilliant ways reduce suffering and improve quality of life for all.
These musings here are a cusury look at Jesu’s teachings. We will go over these in more depth during the slide presentation.
His First Lesson was Before He was Born.
If you search for a “center of gravity” in Jesu’s life.you’ll find that everything He did revolved around and came from this one concept. Kenosis. The Apsotle Paul suggested the word Itmeans to let go. To empty yourself. “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although he existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:5-8).
It is through this emptying of ourselves that we can let go of the egoic, or binary mind that separates us from God and others. Paul invites us to practice this emptying as Jesus did
When we are more able to let go of our egos, we are more able to live our lives in a ventral vagal state. Without the demands of an ego to defend, we are less likely to by triggered into a dorsal vagal freeze of a sympathetic response of fight or flight.
All of Christ’s life was lived from this place of self-emptying. His path to God was not “climb, ascend, go higher,” But rather it was descend, go lower. Let go of the ego and serve others.
Come and See.
Wheen students of Jesus asked Him where He lived, He replied, “Come and see. Jesus graciusly invites us to come and see where He lives, to find Him, and to take on His consciousness. To be like Him. And it’s not an easy task, to be Christlike. He took love beyond the limits we’d ever known and blew it up so big that we struggle to even understand His teachings, let alone put them into practice. He asks us to give without thinking about anything in return. He enourages us, prods us, and walks with us, until we get there. (Luke 6:27-28, 31-36).
The Kingdom of Heaven is Within You.
Jesus used the phrase, The Kingdom of Heaven quite frequently. Scholars say that He wasn’t referrinf to the place you go to after you die, nor is he talking about a utopia here on earth, but rather he is talking about a state of consciousness; nondual consciouness, or oneness. In Jesus’ teachings He shows us that there is no separattion between God and man, and man and man. We are in each other. The saying about the vine and the branch is a good example of this (John 15). It is only when we understand that Jesus is asking us to see the God’s creation as God flowing through it and us and us in Him, that we understand the love Jesus asks us to give to one another, because there is no others. When you apply what we know about the brain and how they all influence and create other brains you begin to see that Jesus is correct. We are one in spirit, but also one in that our brains/nervous systems are all connected.
Love Your Neighbor as Yourself.
When we emoty ourselves and walk through life as Jesus did, we are far more able to see that our neighbors aren’t separate from us. But we have to remain in a ventral vagal state, otherwise the protection states can drive the story that others are “bad” or “not good” and judgement can enter in, something Jesus told us not to do. Judge not. When we learn that judgement causes people to go into a protection state, we better understand just how unloving judgement is.
Seen from the stance of “wisdom”, the beatitudes take on a much richer and deeper meaning. We better understand that Jesus is asking us to get rif of our egoic operating system and to live in His consciousness of nonduality conscousness. We have to be in a ventral vagal state in order to begin practicing Jesus’ eight beaititudes.
The parables are close to what are called koans—profound paradoxes or riddles. They are meant to help us break free of the egoic mind and move into the larger consciousness. The parables are about love and going beyond the ego. If we pay attention, we see that Jesus is asking us to move beyond a prtoect state and into the connect state where we can love.
Jesus reminds us over and over not to fear. We can’t enter His Kingdom if we are in fear, because fear give us the illusion of seperateness. Fear means that we are defending our ego, and in a protect state. we aren’t able to love in a fear state. Fear is the opposite of love.
Two by Two.
When Jesus sent His disciples out to spread the Gospel, He sent them out two by two. He knew that they would need each other to help co-regulate each other’s brain from the stress the would encounter. Connection is our biologcal imperative. Jesus knew to not send the men out individually.
- Which of the teachings of Jesus do you identify with the most?
- Which one is the hardest for you?
- Why do you think Jesus wants us to empty ourselves of ourselves as He did?