Thursday, December 23, 2010

"It's Not Out There" -- Morrnah Nalamaku Simeona

Many people are traveling for the holidays, especially on airplanes.  Someone spoke with me the other day about her fear of flying, which was intense enough to sideline her from certain trips. 

She shared that for her, the worst part of this is "turbulence".  She couldn't stand the feeling of inner lurching, seeing things fly off seat trays, and flight attendants grabbing onto seats to walk.  Even the potential for this was too much to risk.

I remembered a story that Dr. Ihaleakala Hew Len told about his own travels with Morrnah Simeona, the Kahuna Lapa'au who updated Ho'oponopono for modern times.  Morrnah taught all over the world, including at medical centers and the United Nations 3 times.  For her expertise in Hawaiian language and culture, the Hawaii State Legislature and the Hongwanji Mission of Honolulu  named her a "Living Treasure of Hawaii." 

Anyway, Dr. Hew Len worked and traveled with Morrnah for about 10 years before her death in 1992. 

They would always do their Ho'oponopono cleaning before and during their trips.  But on one of their flights, the plane hit turbulence, lurching up and down.  Instinctively, Dr. Hew Len looked out the window.  "I don't know what I thought I would see, but I looked anyway," he said.

Sitting next to him, Morrnah had appeared to be asleep (as she often did).  But she softly said to him, "It's not out there."


Dr. Hew Len realized that she meant the TURBULENCE was not "out there" -- it was IN HERE.  The air turbulence on the flight, like any other potential "problem" we might encounter, was simply memories within -- showing up for release.  On the flight they could look out the window for something else to blame, or take 100% responsibility for their experience, and clean.

They picked option #2, and the turbulence soon disappeared.

Lots of us are walking around all the time with inner turbulence. For the least seeming impertinence, we snap at each other.  We shove and jostle our way in lines, cutting off others so we can be "first".  We get surly with airline workers at the check-in areas.  It all happens in a split second, unconsciously -- no thought, just lizard-brain activity. 

What if we cleaned instead -- BEFORE and during our travels?  What if we simply said "thank you" at each juncture, at each step of the journey?  What if we said (maybe silently) "thank you" to the plane, the seats we're in?  What if we really took responsibility, and -- through Ho'oponopono as well as literally -- cleaned up our places before disembarking?

What if Dr. Hew Len is correct, and "If you could see what happens every time you clean, you would never, ever stop?"

I'm taking him up on that, including when people talk to me about their fear of flying and turbulence.  What about you?

Peace (and safe travels) begins with me,


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Ho'oponopono: Healing Balm for Fearful Souls

I have a story to tell.  It's been brewing for several weeks.  

Many of you have written me with questions about whether Ho'oponopono really "works", and how we can tell.  I've heard similar questions on conference calls and live seminars also.  

Usually Dr. Ihaleakala Hew Len breaks out laughing when we ask such questions, because it's impossible to know at any one moment whether we're being run by "data", or by Inspiration.  The best we can do is "just clean", and know that if we do that, all falls into place as it should.  Mabel Katz often says that we usually only "know" when looking back.

Despite this, it's human nature to get a little impatient sometimes. 

Anyway . . . the story.  Please bear with me.  I share the many steps so you can walk along with me.  

I've been dealing with a large government institution that manages some of my savings from many years' work as medical school faculty.  I had applied for a disbursement on the phone with a company counselor, as required.  And of course, Ho'oponopono cleaning with "thank you" all the while, as well as using the 3/4 full glass of water. 

The process got off to a challenging start, as the man kept changing figures and seemed confused about what forms were needed.  But he ultimately sent several which I could download from the web site, fill out, and return.  Only original forms were acceptable -- no faxes.  But supposedly once returned, I could receive my money in 3-5 business days.   

I did as instructed, and mailed everything back immediately.  Thank you, thank you.  I love you.

Then I attended a several day conference, during which I remembered that the financial company's original time estimate had passed by ~1 week.  So I called during a break.

After waiting in "queue" for ~30 minutes, counselor #2 answered.  I was irritated about waiting so long.  He checked into my case, and informed me that my packet was missing a necessary form that the University required.  My application could not be processed without this, and all my work would be null and void if their receiving this from me took longer than 10 days total from the time we started all this.   Ach!!!

It turned out that counselor #1 had not included this missing form in those he initially sent me.  Counselor # 2 didn't believe me at first, and went back to check on what they'd sent me.  Discovering I was correct, he apologized and said that the company had snail-mailed a copy to me.  I asked him if the company had included an address to return it to?  Should it go to them, or to the University?  He really wasn't sure.  "There's an address in the middle of a paragraph, and that's probably where it goes."  Okay . . . .

I was upset, but still cleaning.  I would not be home for several days to get to the form, which they refused to email or place in their web site "message" area as they had the other forms.  Had they done this, I could have accessed the new form from where I was.   Instead, the clock continued to tick.

Arriving home, I found the nearly indecipherable form -- along with a letter saying the company could not act on my instructions because my request was "incomplete".  It also told me to return the form "in the enclosed envelope."  No envelope came with the mailing.  Thank you . . .  grrrr . . . . thank you.
Frustrated, concerned about my bank account, and also fearful that I would have to re-do the whole process because of elapsed time,  I called the company again.  The queue was 25 minutes -- and I kept cleaning while trying to understand the form with its miniscule print.  Thank you . . . . flypaper . . . . thank you. 

While waiting, I checked through more mail that had come while I was gone.  A letter from Aetna was there -- saying that it planned to increase my health insurance premium in January.  Egad!  I was already tense about money, and here was an added, unexpected expense.  How could I pay for this too?  Thank you . . . hot chocolate . . . need Divinity now . . . :-)

Ultimately, on came counselor #3 -- a friendly-sounding man who apologized for the wait.  I explained my situation, and he read notes left by the other 2.  Could he help me fill out this form, which the University apparently needed -- and could he tell me where to mail it?

Um . . . . no.   Those are University forms.  Their company, though it manages funds for them, does not keep up with University forms.  However, the form is definitely required before any of my own money can come to me.  

After multiple questions, and multiple times placing me "on hold", he eventually found a name and phone number I could call at the medical school, to ask my questions.  (Including where to send the form.)  Thank you . . . grrr . . . thank you.

And, oh by the way -- the company will not be able to do an automatic deposit because my voided check does not list my full name.  "It will take 5-7 more days to mail the amount to you, once we receive what we need," he said.

By now I was very tired, almost despairing.  But I called the number, and asked for the name I'd been given.  A pleasant woman answered -- telling me this person had been retired since March.  Yikes!!  My heart sank further. Was there no end to this torture?

I explained my situation again, and asked if there might be someone there who could help me?  The same woman said, "I can. I am doing the job she was."  Eureka!  I thought.   "But I have a question to ask you first," she said.  Uh-oh.  I felt myself clench.  Thank you . . . . flypaper . . . light switch . . .

"Would you like to apply for the health insurance?"

"What health insurance?"  I asked.

"The health insurance you're entitled to, because you're vested with this system," she replied.  "All it requires is setting aside a small amount of your funds in an annuity, for a minimum monthly disbursement.  Then you can be included in our group coverage.  We have a liaison with that [financial] company who can tell you exactly what to do."

"I can do that?  Even though I don't live in North Carolina any longer?"

"Oh, yes," she said.  We have all kinds of faculty who've retired from our system, and they live all over the US.  They have our health insurance, and you can too.  It is also free for the rest of your life."

Oh. My. G_d. 

Had I not been through what felt like purgatory, my path would never have led to this Human Resources office or this very helpful woman.  I would never have known about this provision -- a Divine Provision, I think -- right when I agonized about paying the higher health insurance premium.

Within 5 minutes, she got me through the form, gave me the correct address for both mail and fax, AND got me the cell phone of the aforementioned university liaison.   She immediately emailed me the health insurance forms, and explained them to me.  Thank you!!  Thank you!!

I felt "bathed in healing balm", as one of my patients once described.  Immense gratitude, far deeper than even "Thank you" can communicate, still floods me about this -- and I marvel at Divinity's ways.  I feel humbled, just what I needed.  There I had been, all puffed up and indignant about jumping through so many hoops for money I had worked hard for -- and all the while, Divinity was preparing my way.  I was being given opportunity after opportunity to clean with each of these people, and probably countless others  behind the scenes.

Ho'oponopono keeps me in partnership with Divinity, rather than thinking I know how things "ought" to turn out.  And so, it "works" for me.  Of course I slip sometimes (okay, a lot of times).  But this situation was like thinking everybody forgot your birthday, and suddenly everyone you love shows up with smiles on their faces, bringing you a party. 

An ancient Hawaiian saying goes like this:  "Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way."  I know this for sure, now -- deep in my heart.  As Mabel says, "You never know where it's going to come from.  Just clean."  Thank you, dear Divinity, for loving me even when I slip.    

Peace begins with me,