This entry today (Which was really written yesterday, June 11 and this morning, June 12th) is a preview of my next installment called “Let Us Recognize Ourselves in One Another.”

Consider this a multi-media forum of offerings from friends of mine and people who have moved me recently with their soulful contributions about the workings of the spirit and our collective destinies …

I have been thinking lately about the process of healing– the gift that challenges present us with after we have figured out how to meet them and work through them, rather than avoiding them with “quick fix” solutions, that are not solutions at all, but mere bandaids. When we choose these “easy” solutions, which are in fact not solutions at all, we rob ourselves of the chance to experience healing from the inside out … we completely circumvent the very process that will set our souls free from the suffering that we all create for ourselves. The expression “pain is inevitable, but suffering is a choice,” is really true in the end. I never wanted to admit to it, but how true it is. What we fight, we continue to repeat and repeat, like the water wheel that keeps turning round and round. If you want to get off of the merry-go-round of repetition, break the cycle. Make the choice to stop the madness, and you can do it. You can do it by sitting still long enough to f e e l and breathe … even if what comes up doesn’t feel pleasant, it will be real, and when you give yourself permission to feel, whatever hurts, whatever makes your heart ache is allowed to surface and bubble, and boil and then dissipate, just like the water that boils in a pot and then evaporates as steam into the air that surrounds it– the same thing happens with our emotions when we give them space and  a way out– a way out of the body and the mind.  Pain and heartache, anger and frustration– when we give ourselves permission to “be with” those feelings and we allow ourselves to respond, we move them out– we feel lighter, we feel better, we feel more spacious, we feel more peaceful. We create space for what is new and we move the old, stagnant “chi” or energy OUT. We cry, we moan, we express. We do exactly what we, as human beings in society are told NOT to do! “Don’t cry– you’ll ruin your make-up,” or “Big boys don’t cry– be a MAN!” Oh the robbery! The robbery of the very thing that would set us all free! Express yourself, breathe, cry, let it out– it’s okay. It’s better than okay– it is the thing that will set you free and make you feel better– without that pill, or that drink, or that smoke, or that tryst.

Truly, the only way out is through, feeing your feelings, letting yourself surrender to what is, so that you can learn and grow from what you are feeling … and after you read this excerpt from my friend, Kaia Van Zandt and watch this inspiring video, you may glean a new perspective on what healing means for you …  From my friend and esteemed Astrologer, Molly Hall (http://astrology.about.com/b/2009/06/09/the-gift-in-the-wound.htm?nl=1), this link that I’d like to share with you:


“We have a lot of work to do together in coming years. We must each free ourselves of internal afflictions inherited from the sleepers who came before us through the lineage of the pain passed to us from our ancestors and do our best to heal ourselves from the agony we have often endured in this life. Then we can come together, and create a new world with peace as its foundation, and love as its doors, empathy as its gates. I really believe you just don’t get anywhere in life without mastering yourself on some level, committing to your dreams and to faith in them again and again, and persevering through the challenges that befall you, ultimately to see them as teachers. In this way we can see that others are ourselves, and connection can be born in communities where we not only live but thrive in non-violence, ahimsa. This is the true journey of consciousness… embrace. The guiding light of my life has been this prayer I say every morning. I etch it here for you in cyber space: Guru Brahma, Guru Vishnu, 
Guru Devo Maheshwara
Guru Sakshat, Parham Brahma
Tash Mishri Guruvey, Namaha. Translation: I offer all of my efforts to that teacher which is this life I have been brought into, to that teacher which is this life I continue to lead, and to those teachers which are all manner of trials, challenges, sicknesses, and heartbreaks that befall me on my path. I offer all of my efforts to that teacher that lives within me, and to that teacher who lives beyond the beyond, formless, and supreme. Namaste.”

~Kaia Van Zandt

An extraordinary thought to consider, that each of us has the power to choose. We each have the magical ability to choose a new path, diverging from that of our ancestors– honoring them for their gifts, and striving to evolve beyond their limitations– those insidious paths to pain and suffering borne of a passive unconsciousness. If we can find the courage to choose freedom, then we must roll up our sleeves and look at ourselves honestly– take responsibility for cultivating our own happiness and our own peace of mind … like tending to your garden, or giving pure love to a beloved pet, we must look to ourselves for the love we seek outside, and give ourselves the tenderness, learn the art of self-acceptance so that we can allow our innermost, timeless nature and essence to reveal itself. It is also through our relationships with others, the “contracts”– soul agreements we enter into that present us with the challenges that make us grow and transform. Once confronted by the seemingly insurmountable obstacles, the painful reminders of our past inheritance, the wounds our parents often unwittingly dealt us, we have the choice once again, to give up, to fold and repeat the past, or to rise to the occasion. We can choose to see those obstacles as gifts for the soul and to see those people who we come to scorn and blame, as the very messengers who carry the secrets to the code, that once cracked, once integrated become our ticket out. Gifts for the soul come in many different kinds of packages and all of these “gifts,” these relationships, no matter how brief can be powerful catalysts for change and growth. I can’t help but smile because I am thinking of “Mission Impossible” right now– “If you should choose to accept this mission …”  Now is the time to look beyond the obvious, personally, interpersonally and globally.  It is a time to use our creative thinking and our generosity of spirit to create what is NEW, to consider the gifts we have received and those we have taken for granted. It is a time to measure each step and smell each rose and let our eyes light on the bird that lands beside us on that branch, mere inches out of reach … The thing that comes to mind for me right now is Yin Yoga, one of the most powerful vehicles of self-discovery and catharsis that I know. The next time you are moved to do an active, vigorous practice, choose the opposite– try Yin instead and prepare to be amazed … what will be revealed to you is yourself– the self that gets silenced and buried under the excessive “busy-ness” of our lives. And it is in the stillness, in the quiet that we create for ourselves that the true jewels of our lives can be brought to light. Our inner power, freedom, self-confidence, self-love, patience, compassion, peace– the real jewels– the very things that make living a good life possible. No small thing. And from such a simple practice. When I discovered the power of Yin yoga, I was moved to share it with others– what helped me to heal, I needed to share with others, and as I watched others heal, I continued to heal even more. This is what Chiron’s life was all about — through healing others, he healed himself. If you want to make your contribution to the healing of the world, consider the “Butterfly effect …” and start by doing your very first Yin yoga session– throw your seemingly insignificant stone into the water and watch the ripples roll out concentrically … into tidal waves of change and love. Your small stone will become a towering mountain of strength for you, and for others —rooted deeply into the strata of the earth, reaching upwards into heaven, nearly touching the stars. Dream! Believe! Speak it all out loud. Share your healing with others, so that we may all heal together and rise to higher levels of consciousness, compassion and grace. Know it in your heart, in the deepest quiet and stillness of each moment– your truth. Believe that the simple act of breathing consciously, your dedication, your commitment to surrender to what is, will allow you to cultivate the strength and the energy to usher in the greatest good health, prosperity and abundance in your life. Come to know that what you do on your mat, truly does become what is possible in your life.

The next time that you feel yourself moving towards blame or anger, take a deep breath and consider your part in the transaction, engage in some self-observation and before acting, pause and be kind to yourself, do the exact opposite of what you would ordinarily choose. The result may surprise you, and if you continue to do this and invite it to become a way of life, it is this simple act of kindness toward yourself that will generate the most immense power and faith within your own being, and it is the very thing which, in the end will bring you closer to yourself and closer to what really matters, closer to the life you wish for— it is the very thing which will bring you home.

I leave you today with a beautiful prayer that we often close our yoga practice with …

May all beings be happy and free and may my thoughts, words and actions contribute in some way to this happiness and freedom for all~

For a fascinating explanation of Chiron and his history:

Excerpt below From Rob Tillett’s: http://www.astrologycom.com/chiron.html

Immortal Son of Saturn

A comet-like planetoid now called Chiron was discovered by Charles T. Kowal on November 1, 1977. This rara avis flies between the courses of Saturn and Uranus in a highly elliptical 51-year orbit, closer at perihelion to the Sun than Saturn and almost as far out at aphelion as Uranus. This has the effect of moving him swiftly through some signs, such as Libra, but very slowly through others, such as Aries. The current scientific position is that Chiron probably originated in the Kuiper Belt, a disk of objects orbiting beyond Neptune. The first of many such minor planets (Centaurs) to be discovered, Chiron still remains the largest and most significant of these in terms of human destiny.

Chiron, immortal son of Kronos (Saturn), governs healing and relationships; he teaches us, as he did with Jason, Achilles and Heracles, to fulfil our ultimate potential. Chiron taught his secrets to Asclepios, the divine healer, but in modern astrology he profoundly stands for the deep wounds we have brought into this life to be healed – and so to enable us to heal others. His emblem represents holistic understanding. The area of the chart in which Chiron is located is the focus of the karmic healing process, which is often very painful.

When Chiron is activated by major progressions and transits, experiences tend to occur that bring us face to face with what really drove us to come here to this beautiful, but often painful planet. The sorrows and sufferings of the deep past are activated, brought to the surface, and we are given the chance to resolve them: to awaken from the sleep of ages. These experiences are karmic in the true sense of the word, for they will shake us until we wake, so long as we do not dull their effects with alcohol, drugs, or other ways of remaining drowsy, such as overwork or compulsive sex.

Chiron shakes us according to our character, as revealed through the symbols of the natal chart. A person with strong Mars will turn to violent action, or aggressive behaviour to avoid the truth; someone with strong Venus will smother consciousness in pleasure; one who has a powerful Moon may become drug or alcohol affected; Jupiter will turn to gambling; Saturn to overwork and so on for all the planetary types. The key to this is understanding the opportunity to reach a new level of consciousness, so that our own wounds may be healed and so that we may become a healing beacon in our own communities.

Chiron instructing Achilles in Music
Go to Top An Inner Teacher

Unlike the drunken centaurs, Chiron was wise, with extensive knowledge of the healing arts, astrology, music and medicine. Heracles (Hercules) unintentionally wounded his teacher in the knee, during his battle with the centaurs. Thus his wound was in a sense self-inflicted, for he himself had taught the hero to make the poisoned arrow by dipping it in the blood of the Hydra. The last of his kind, Chiron relinquished immortality so that the titanic rebel Prometheus (who brought the gift of fire – stolen from the gods – to the human race) could be released from his eternal torment. Thus he died so that humanity might live. After his death, he was placed in the firmament as the constellation Sagittarius.

Chiron is a knowledge holder who transmits higher teachings either as an outer teacher (Saturn), or as an inner teacher or spirit guide (Uranus). Embodying the archetype of “the wounded healer”, Chiron stresses the importance of going within to find an answer – and then sharing it with others.

In education, music and medicine, Chiron unites the body and mind, instinct and intellect. His ancient teachings are now resurfacing through the advent of holistic health and education. Chiron is often seen to be a “maverick”, perhaps due to his eccentric orbit, and his closeness to Uranus. He can also be held responsible for deep, dreamlike states of consciousness, especially when connected by a major aspect with Saturn.

4 Responses to “Chiron: The Wounded Healer”

Thank you, Jennifer, for your generous being. Lately I have been scouring my consciousness for anything that resembles resistance to perfect happiness. After meditating for hours and days, and avoiding “band-aids” I somehow randomly picked up one of your books, and was compelled to check out your blog with its warm welcome. The resistance I found in my heart was this: Some fragment of “me” did not feel welcome! I never would have noticed it had I not felt the welcome of spirit here, and so I asked myself, “why do I not feel this every minute of every day?” And so I read the excerpt from Rob Tillett regarding the discovery of what drove each one of us to come to this planet, and how each type can mask his pain with distraction rather than quiet vision. The spirit of my recent retreat has been to stop everything and just face whatever I thought might be underneath: boredom, nothingness, death, pain etc. My style has changed to more of a not-doer than a doer. Freeing up energy for what the inner being compels me to do, so that, when the energy flows, whatever thing I do with my body is fully aligned with the purpose of healing, love and joy, and that twilight ambience of perfect assurance erases limitations. You might say that I have a goal, and it is to merit this very state of being through forgetting my self. My work is to muster every thought, movement, and moment toward its achievement and stabilization, without entertaining the illusory self that obscures it. And so I become deeply quiet, and feel the welcome God has brought me, through your generous being, on this wonderful day, in this wonderful world, as it is in Heaven.

June 19th, 2009

Hi Todd,

What a wonderful response. Tell me more about yourself and your life and how you came to start meditating!
I am so curious about your recent retreat that you mention and want to thank you for sharing your revelations here!

Kindest regards,

June 19th, 2009

An interesting read for an emergency physician…someone who spends there day putting “bandaids” and “quick fixes” on medical conditions. It is frustrating to see people coming in to look for such things for problems best handled by an ongoing relationship with a primary care provider, when those who truly need emergency care have to wait a few moments while we complete a chart, write a prescription, or something related to the care for the not so urgent.

Yet thru it all, emergency providers do it day in and out, and every now and again, we truly make a difference in someone’s life. I know. I once saved a 17 year old boy from death, by his own neglect of himself thru substance abuse. And when he and his family returned one day to thank us, we knew the difference we had made.

I wish your advice in this blog was more widespread, it would go a long way in healthcare!

Stephen Vetrano
July 11th, 2009

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