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The art of transformation

In the previous episode I talked about the power of voice, how we find it and how our voice changes over time. I believe this is all part of the transformative power of being human with several points in our lives permitting seasons that enable change.

Did you know that the body of the caterpillar is broken down into imaginal cells while it is in the cocoon? From this broken-down state the butterfly is formed. The imaginal cells are like stem cells that can become any type of cell, and these eventually come together to form a new shape, a new creature, the butterfly.

The cocoon of a caterpillar is often found in concealed locations because the cocoon itself is intended to be a camouflage and a protected environment in which all these intricate changes happen away from sight.

Same as the womb hides and preserves the embryo while it forms into a baby.

Same as the aging eagle that hides away in the mountains to renew itself.

When we are in a transitory state, things seem formless almost empty and certainly present many dark moments translating into little or no clarity.

The writer of the book Anonymous, Alicia Britt Chole says, "In each season of hiddenness our sense of value is disrupted, stripped of what others affirmed in us, we are left staring at our undecorated self, wondering what makes us truly special."

Seasons of transformation often present this hiddenness, where we feel separated, stripped and slowed down. However, this unsettling process of disaggregation only serves as a vacuum for new beginnings, fresh starts and opportunity if we maintain the right perspective.

The word "darkness" is associated with many awful things including ruin, desolation, blackness, gloom, dark clouds. Many times in these dark places or moments there is something remarkable happening yet not fully understood. Things might be at their minutiae, their smallest unit but this is what things are built from. We do not build a building that is already standing but smaller pieces are brought together and improve on whatever was once there or perhaps never existed. Sometimes the vaccum is so great we find it hard to perceive what is possible.

Yet there is something almost magical and scintillating about transformation and for this reason I am not sure we always realise when we are going through a transformation.

We sometimes delay ourselves or our transformation by tending to old habits and we do this because we think we should stay the same or act the same or even worse think the same. When a baby is learning to walk, they may fall on their bottom and look a bit dazed from the fall but they get up again only to realise they can still walk. It’s the same with breaking into new habits, I think it is the same with transforming, the basic structures are there but you have to believe they will work for you.

Have you ever found yourself thrown out of a comfortable situation? Not pleasant is it but hopefully you realise something inside is immediately stirred and becomes functional in that arena ready to fight, ready to fly.

Although we age physically we were created to evolve in our thinking, in our habits, in our lifestyle and so there will always be a season for renewal, a season of transition, a time for transformation.

There are a few things I think transformation does require from you

Transformation requires the right level of perception and it shouldn't come as a surprise we don't always perceive things correctly.

We are very much conditioned by our environment and our senses help us with that conditioning. We exist in very different environments, terrains, societies, families and each with is own peculiarity that fosters a climate for our unique growth and development. These environments and conditioning are fundamental to our growth and existence but they do not present all of who we are. What really makes you is already inside you and until you choose to activate it, it will remain dormant inside of you.

Our senses stimulate us to see, to smell, to hear, to feel things and as we do this memory is created along our journey. All this stimulation brings us to a points of transition where we know we need to transform and some of that memory causes fear. I wonder what the caterpillar is thinking as it goes into the cocoon knowing its basically about to be cremated and then restored as a completely different creature that flies. The thought of cremation mortifies me and I bet anyone who ever thinks of going through such a thing would wonder "why was I ever born". Yet the thought of flight fills me with exhiliaration.

The sense of perception is universal, all of creation can perceive and as a result we perceive when the time is right for something, there is an echo within that indicates this to us.

Transformation doesn't happen because of the knowledge we have it happens because of knowledge we apply.

What we do or how we act can impact the senses, it can change the climate of an environment, it can change the culture of a people. It can create a movement. When a person moves to do something it is because they have heard something or seen something or felt something or tasted something and ultimately perceived something that causes them to go in particular direction. Cause and effect. Causality.

We cannot transform without something happening inside of us, like we cannot heal from a wound simply because time has passed. Within the brokenness something needs to happen that effects change.

Transformation requires courage. There will be sensations awakened in you which you may not have experienced before and that can be scary. The prospect of being crushed presents no appeal yet many times we are completely reduced to bring forth the new.

Transformation requires discipline. This is often overlooked but just as powerful as courage because in a strange place there is only one thing you know is constant - YOU. Those indelible qualities that make you different from anyone else and qualities you have refined over time by polishing your voice and finding your passions.

You may not know what will happen next, but if you have already created a healthy pattern, let it hold strong even in the moments of contradiction, in the moments of uncertainty, in the deep places where regeneration happens. You must hold strong and that is within your control and nobody else, just you.

I cannot say how many times I have taken my own self discipline for granted and as a result foiled a transformative moment. If we are honest and look back we do it more often than we would like to admit. A pattern that needs to be broken indicates a new path is waiting to be created that takes us to the next level.

Transformation requires a growth mindset. When we disenable the growth of people around us we suffocate our own growth. Many might think that finding one's self is a moment in time epiphany! No. We have the opportunity to keep finding or discovering ourselves every day.

The growth mindset is a vital part of transformation. The more magnificent the final product is the more complex the transformation process would be and that is why in the transformation of our lives grace is such a potent ingredient.

The art of receiving something requires that we permit it to cause a change in us which leads us to the irreplaceable gift of grace. Grace is the ethereal portion of our transformation. With all that we can humanly do, there is still a portion completely out of our control. That portion is covered by grace. The invisible structures for transformation are in place by grace, not by our own intelligence or even tenacity but by grace and that in itself is art at its finest.

Be blessed.

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