• Maura McCarley Torkildson

Spiritual Coercion and True Safety

This is my epiphany for the today (thanks to some healing work from two gifted souls that I was able to work with this day). The church and so many patriarchal organizations get it exactly backwards. Regardless of what they preach, your soul is always safe. How do I know this? My intuition and my experience tell me my soul is safe. I take a look at the world around me and I see how ephemeral everything is. When I am at my at my lowest low, when I’m depressed, when I’m scared, when I’m fearful, I can still step back and find that safe place inside me. That safe place is my soul. When I feel my feet on the ground, when I become aware of my breath and when I let go into presence, I experience the silent, still heart of eternity which never moves and lives inside me as well as beyond. My body, on the other hand, is never really safe. Beyond the risk of earthquakes, accidents and disease, my body is especially not safe in this world which uses trauma to manipulate and coerce all of us, all of the time. In fact, as a female in this misogynistic body-hating culture, my body is almost never safe.

My safety point is my soul. This is precisely why spiritual coercion is evil. It uses our bodies to try to convince us that our soul is not safe. Then it uses the threat against our soul to make us hate our bodies, convincing us the body is our enemy, that our emotions are untrustworthy and that our needs are evil incarnate. Without trust in our vehicle, our souls recede from our awareness and we become bereft. Our bodies become the weapon against trust in self and soul, which renders us dependent, fearful and so easy to manipulate and control.

That is just flat out wrong. That is malevolent. Look around you at this civilization with all its trauma and you will know I speak truth.

So just how effed up are religions that would try to make us fear for our soul because of the desires, wants and needs of our bodies? How backwards are religions that teach us we are not part of the whole, already part of God, but somehow separate and always in danger of a fate worse than dying? Just what kind of lives are we supposed to live in that sort of belief system? I will tell you - traumatized lives - just like the disconnected, stressful lives that most of us on this planet are currently living. The angry part of me would like to say there will be Hell to pay. But there isn’t a Hell as such, except for the conditions that have been created under such an malicious system in THIS world. It doesn’t have to be like this. I know it can be different, or rather my soul knows. Imagine the life we could create if we gave up that drama? Imagine life when we know every moment of every day that our souls are safe?

The fact that I know my soul is safe in the midst of a culture which works so hard to try to convince me that it’s not, is remarkable. It’s amazing and it’s a blessing. It’s also a testament to me and to all the beautiful teachers that I’ve had in my lifetime. It’s a testament to the love of my family, both genetic and otherwise, which I have formed over my life. It is a testament to the power of Love.

I want you to know, I write this to remind you too. Your soul is safe. Stand in that and begin to trust in yourself again.

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