What is Passover?Â Passover, or Pesach, as it is called in Hebrew, celebrates the Israelites escape from slavery, their safe crossing across the miraculously parted seas on their journey towards freedom in the Promised Land.Â For thousands of years, every spring, on the 15th day of the Hebrew calendar, people gather around a ceremonial dinner to read the story and remember the lessons learn from a life filled with censure and repression to one filled with safe self-expression.
Then how come, after all these thousands of years, so many still deny themselves their birthright to authentically express themselves.
Are we really free of slavery?Â Would you call giving up on your dreams and not following through, freedom?Â Would you call cowering in fright from uncertainty, freedom?Â I call it self slavery.Â If you experience this, you are not alone.Â It’s a plight of the modern human race and it’s time that we truly free ourselves to live in the light of our inner wisdom.
I thought it would be cool to use this holiday week as an opportunity to explore timeless ways to free ourselves of self doubt and to increase our self trust. Here are 5 major ones to begin:
1) Slow Down:Â One of the center pieces of the ceremonial dinner is the Seder Plate – upon which are several foods which symbolize different aspects of the Passover story. One of these symbols is an egg. Eggs symbolize rebirth. Eggs are a sort of embryo.Â Ideas and changes are not immediately hatched. They take time. If you keep going full steam ahead, you risk killing off your dreams before they have time to build momentum. If you keep rushing, you’ll burn yourself out and have no energy left to follow through on your wonderful dreams.Â Â During Pesach, it is tradition to recline with soft pillows. What a wonderful way to remember to relax and slow down. Even if you give yourself five minutes extra time just to breathe, you’ll feel so much better.
2) Come Out of Isolation:Â The tradition of Passover is to meet with others.Â In the modern world, we have become so pre-occupied with accomplishment – doing more yet accomplishing less, that it creates numerous illnesses which are growing at epidemic proportions.Â Call a friend you haven’t spoken with for a while. Invite a few friends or colleagues for a meal.Â You can take note from Anita Diamant’sÂ The Red Tent: The book’s title refers to the tent in which women of Jacob’s tribe must, according to the ancient law, take refuge while giving birth, and in which they find mutual support and encouragement from their mothers, sisters and aunts.
3) Embrace Uncertainty: The Israelites stood at the seashore. It was not until the man named Nachshon whose name shares the Hebrew root representing the word: for initiation and willingness, took the first step into the sea that the alchemical magic of molecular shift could occur. He took a second Â step,and then a third step, and a fourth! He was up to his neck in water and about to drown when the seas actually parted. It was his faith, and willingness to embrace uncertainty, to go to his death, that allowed the miracle to occur.
Making change is not comfortable. It requires a certain willingness to die, at least to die to our old familiar ways. I discovered in my life that meeting the fear of death is exactly the thing which allows me to live life on my own terms.
If you have not discovered Jonathan Fields– Facing Uncertainty – do yourself a favor and visit his blog.Â In the video trailer for his book, he speaks extemporaneously, without planning, without a script – on the experience of meeting insecurity, consciously. Just watching that one video can inspire you to increase your willingness to take the step towards your own parting of the seas.
4) Give Yourself A Chance:Â How easily do you support yourself when the going gets rough?Â Do you keep going or give up? Give in? The Israelites spent forty years in the desert before they were able to even reach the outskirts of the Promised Land.Â In Heaven’s Journey to Life there’s a great discussion on how to overcome giving up before you’ve even started. You’ll find many useful and inspiring ideas here.
5) Reclaim Music in Your Life:
20 years ago, I made a pilgrimage from Paris, France (my home back then) to Israel during Passover week. My friend Marie had shared her dream of coming to Israel, I had sworn off returning to the Middle East unless there were a good reason and I was in good company.Â Surrounding the signing of the Oslo accords, and accompanying my good friend, were a harmonious blend.Â We purchased cash tickets and excitedly awaited our travel date. One week before she disappeared out of my life. To this day, I have no idea what happened.Â I decided to come alone on my own personal exodus, to reclaim the music in my life, true harmony from the inside out (more to come in following posts). The big epiphany came – after an extra long two hour meditation at the Western Wall in Jerusalem.Â The cryptic message rang deep in the well of my soul:
“Move to Israel. Settle in Galilee. There you will found a place where there will be special music combining East and West, computers… it will be in a green place, where you see blue. The focus will be over the seas.”Â Â After breaking through corporate stuckness by singing in theÂ trains of Paris
and developing trust in where my inner voice was guiding me, I knew to close up shop in Paris, and move cold turkey to Israel.Â It has been an amazing journey, and continues to be. I will be sharing more in this blog about it.
Where is the music moving you? Literally and figuratively? When you listen to music, it can transport you to a place beyond your coginitive mind, especially if it is acoustic music and there are wordless vocals. This has been medically proven.Â It can cure insomnia and lower stress significantly. These are big keys to increase your own sense of self trust.
When we trust ourselves, we risk more. When we trust ourselves we have more to share. When we share what we have to give, everyone prospers. We free ourselves from the shackles of self doubt and inner slavery.
Where in your life would you most benefit from increasing self trust?Â Please comment below.