How STAR allowed me to Open my Heart

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Graduate Profiles

By David Hobby, Ph.D., Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in California

In many ways my life truly began during the STAR program. During the process I was startled to find out that there was still a part of my being that had never been birthed. It was still waiting; on the fence about whether it wanted to be in this world. Sure, I was familiar with this part but had never realized it could be a stable part of my energy. After Barbara midwifed my youngest part I was greeted with such love and acceptance this young part became grounded within my personality. When I returned home I found this part had integrated and had the trust and ability to relax into challenging situations.

You see, my shell had been hardened by life's experiences and I had learned to search for safety within an inner world untouched by life's hard realities. My life kind of worked. My relationships were basically fulfilling except at times I seemed to fall into a black hole. I was too terrified to truly allow my wounded child to receive real love. Whenever intimacy rose to the level where my neediness was activated I would distance myself. It was not like I logically thought this out, but my shadow would jump in. During this time an autistic part of my energy was present who was basically paralyzed, feeling safe with no one. His only protector was the shadow who allowed access to only a handful of close friends and family. I saw this frozen part of myself as deformed, or stupid and I hid him not only from others but even myself.

In hindsight I can see how it took the collective energies of the staff, the participants, nature, and the Divine to provide a container strong enough to allow me to open my heart and accept the healing energy of love. That was the only way my undeveloped autistic energy, who was angry and afraid, was ever going to show up.

I found the power of separation to be strong because I had learned early that separating the good and the bad was the only way to survive. I was like a Japanese soldier on a pacific island still hiding years after WWII was over; and believing the world was out to kill me, or rather out to destroy my spirit. So I hid and never gave myself a chance to see if the war was over.

My shadow was still in charge of security and was invested in projecting my unwanted or bad feelings onto others. It urged me to blame others when things did not go my way. It became stronger when I was judging others and created a false sense of security. For I was working hard to survive by keeping myself from entering into that autistic part of myself where I had only known the pain of not being accepted in my frozenness.

Yes that young energy is still with me. I have discovered it is not so much frozen as it is constantly being reborn. Until I connected and began living from my core self I was unable to nourish and love it. From the inside it was my radiant child but in trying to force it to conform with the world it became my wounded child; never enough, or too much, always running from the pain.

I now know how to be with the energy, with my energy and how to find love and radiate love until the fear becomes a distant memory. I know how to return to the heart and how to be with others who are feeling the power of separation and awaiting that moment, this moment, when time stops. In that moment, this moment, realization unfolds that there is no separation awakening a wholeness so tangible that the mind can no longer deny its authenticity. What was feared as death has transformed into rebirth. Not a single event but an eternal process of giving and receiving.

STAR is the place where all of this comes together every time I enter. It is our sacred space.