After listening to my story and sitting with me in ceremonies, Juan told me my problem was that I was full of garbage. To do this, I would use natem, too. Juan made clear that he would not want to share natem with hippies who like drugs, because this is not the purpose of taking these sacred plants. In addition, he pointed out that the Shuar natem should not be confused with ayahuasca from Peru, an herbal blend that includes leaves of a psychoactive herb called chacruna (Psychotria viridis). In fact, Juan considers the other psychoactive blends of what Westerners think of as ayahuasca as neurotoxins that he would never consider using or offering. As a result of the interruption of these lines of communication, our instinctual survival drives remain mostly unconscious and unevaluated by our critical mind. The primal instincts of the animal take control and the part of us that could care for, love, temper, and channel that vital wildness is overshadowed. Under these conditions, human beings react to the world in survival-driven, irrational, and inflammatory ways that create ongoing cycles of suffering. When this happens, it becomes virtually impossible to hear the messages of the Self or to perceive the path of your Tao because the focus of your attention is oriented outward. And yet, just as the ancient Taoist alchemists recognized that human beings are born with an innate capacity to interrupt the entropic yang activity of the shen, modern scientists now recognize that we are born with an innate capacity to restore communication between the disparate parts of our brain, between the Fire Alarm and the Watchtower, the Wild Animal of the limbic system/brain stem and the Caring Friend of the higher mind. The amazing truth is that you are born already wired with the ability to consciously contact, nurture, and transform the reactive wild animal of your instinctual body into a responsive helpful ally and a trustworthy guide. While most of your conscious brain is focused on the outside world, on analyzing data and planning strategic responses, there is a special part of the frontal lobes called the medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC), located directly above and behind your eyes at the point Vedic alchemists called the third eye. This special and very recently developed part of your brain notices what is going on inside of you and allows you to consciously recognize, evaluate, and care about what you are feeling. The primary function of the MPFC can best be described as self-awareness; Psychologists, brain researchers, and trauma specialists have been studying the MPFC and its effect on the emotional body for the past three decades. You will become one of His special ones--a child of God with all of His goodness and care available to you forever. Will you take that leap and accept His offer today? All you have to do is stop, look up, and tell Jesus that you believe, and you want him to be yours forever. There will never be a better time than right now. If you need help taking this next step, I am here for you!

You can reach out over social media or my website. I also highly recommend heading over to www. There you can learn more, ask questions, and get instant help 24/7. Don't leave this article until you get the help you need. If you have accepted Jesus, welcome to the first step in finding everything you have ever dreamed of. Empathy Versus Sympathy Empathy is a significant element in the process of forgiveness. However, empathy is easily confused with sympathy, and sympathy is not an effective way to reach forgiveness. Empathy is the deep understanding of and compassion for another person's feelings, reactions, and experiences, whereas sympathy is actually experiencing the other person's feelings and perspective. Caretakers are very good at sympathizing, but true empathy can be more elusive. In sympathy, you are joining and going into the emotional experience of the other person. When the narcissist was sad, you felt miserable too; Sympathy pulls you into the experience, and as a result, you become part of the drama. It can eventually trigger resentment in you because the other person isn't appreciative enough of your efforts. Real empathy doesn't activate resentment or a need for repayment. I like affection, but I love to be alone because I'm often wrapped up in my thoughts and obsessing over possibilities! Growing up you kind of get hardened and you get jaded by how realistic things are and you see so many bad things that it kind of makes you think that the good things that you want are kind of impossible and so you end up settling. So if these are the thoughts and I already can't communicate in relationships at that young of an age I carry those things over into my next relationships, not growing from them necessarily and I can't grow from them because I never figured out that the problem. Is communication or the problem was not being able to feel comfortable enough letting someone know what I was thinking or what I was feeling or what I wanted without that causing a conflict. Everyone has their own set of issues and insecurities but in relationships they all translate over into the same common issues.

So when you have a deadline of when you should be in a relationship, married, and starting a family sometimes all those things get swept under the rug and not addressed in a manner that you can grow from. So the end result is feelings of disappointment, and being inadequate that could cause you to stay in a situation longer than you should or not see how holding on could just prolong the inevitable. As people we often have life expectancy. You know the ones. I will have my first house when I'm 30. The problem is that if you keep a to-do list, you try to accomplish 12 to 15 items every single day. You go to work feeling pretty good, have your favorite cup of coffee, and think everything is going great--until you see those 12 to 15 items. Instantly, you feel overwhelmed, depressed, or defeated even before you start your day. You may tell yourself you can get it all done, and then ultimately accomplish only three of the items. But at the end of the day, you leave without completing the list, and tomorrow's list is still in front of you. It's human nature to focus on what we leave undone and to leave work feeling overwhelmed and stressed, thinking, Man, I'll never get it all done! Leadership Tip One of the fastest ways to burn out at work is to place unrealistic expectations on yourself. This is one of the reasons I don't like to-do lists. Another is that we tend to start with the easiest items, thinking we have time to complete all or most of them. A free person wants good for all. Hence, a free person should always act with good intentions. And good intentions do not make you feel guilty. But when a free person screws up and becomes cynical about life, he or she should feel guilty. That's the only good guilt there is.

When you know you are doing the wrong thing. When you're harming others with your actions. And when you squander your potential. With all those hours you're wasting on complaining, binge watching T. You could have been selfish. But if love is unfamiliar territory for us, we must proceed with caution. Newly grown love within us is like a sprouting plant. It needs care and protection. We must learn to watch out for those who would take advantage of our happiness and effervescence. I used to give my love recklessly. I assumed that everyone wanted what was best for me because I wanted what was best for them, and it all felt like a happy love party with nothing but good feelings and warm fuzzies. I was like a dog wagging my tail and wiggling at everyone who came around. But smart dogs will sniff the hand of those they encounter before they let loose their full joy. And if they smell something that makes them suspicious, they know intuitively to hold back just a bit and wait for more information. I was not so good at holding back, and I encountered a handful of individuals over the years who wanted to exploit my love but not return it, to take from me all that I would give and then demand more. The natem ceremony usually involves consuming a tea brewed from a combination of the vine Banisteriopsis caapi and two other leaves that contain potent alkaloids. Over three days practitioners mix a large batch of these herbs with water and boil it until the liquid condenses into a small bottle of thick, molasses-like syrup. Juan explained that the preparation was designed to have little to no hallucinogenic effect, but that its purgative element would be strong: I would experience severe vomiting and diarrhea throughout the process as the garbage was expelled from my system. As I drank the thick syrup, my whole body shuddered. And its effect on my digestive system was exactly as Juan said it would be: excessive purgation, over a period of three days.

While the natem treatments provided some level of resolution for my symptoms and increased my vitality, the symptoms did not completely disappear, and my condition remained undiagnosed. But after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, I would return to the idea of cleansing the gut as a treatment, because it had made me feel lighter and more energetic. Many practitioners recommend treating the gut ecosystem with oral probiotics--supplements that add beneficial bacteria to the microbiome. Unfortunately, changing the microbiome is not that simple. There isn't much evidence that oral probiotics can successfully inoculate the gut with a new microbiome to the extent that is required. There is no doubt that the MPFC endows us with the ability to modulate our emotions, to recognize what is going on inside of us, and to consciously communicate with the deep wisdom of our animal body. But the MPFC does not function involuntarily, especially when we are traumatized, under stress, or emotionally activated. Modern research parallels the insights of the ancient alchemists: the alteration of our emotions, our instinctual reactivity, and our patterns of habitual behavior begin with a reversal of awareness, a counter-intuitive flipping of the neurological switch, a turning around of the inner eye. Change in your life begins when you shift the focus of your attention away from the outer world--the others who are wronging you and the events you cannot control--and instead drop down from your thinking mind into the deep yin spaciousness of your heart. The enormous psycho-spiritual importance of this connection was recognized by ancient alchemists and is depicted in the Tarot, a deck of seventy-eight cards used from the mid-fifteenth century throughout Europe. The Tarot offers a symbolic map of consciousness that has the potential to guide the seeker through a journey of spiritual growth. The Eleventh Major Arcana Card: Strength (in some decks numbered Eight) depicts a beautiful woman gently taming and guiding the lion by her side. The strength this card portrays is not a dominating power of one being over another but rather a harmonious relationship between two aspects of being--the instinctual animal body symbolized by the lion and the refining spirit of the mind represented by the serene woman with her hand resting lovingly on the lion's head. Here, the woman's gaze is not focused on the outer world but is turned inward and down toward the animal who looks back at her with devoted adoration. The card can be understood as a picture of Sophia, the Goddess of Wisdom, tempering the primitive fiery yang energy of the wild beast. God is more than we can comprehend or wish for, and He lavishly loves each of us. It can feel nerve-wracking to trust God with your future, but you have a safe place here. And I would cherish it if you would be brave enough to reach out and tell me about your decision through email, social media or my web-site! Let's go running into God's arms today. Self-Discovery