On the shore of Pushkar Sarovar, in Rajastan. Photo by Céline Hamelin.

Have you ever thought of what it means to be present? I used to think that being present meant emptiness. For 10 years, I was a disciplined Yoga practitioner, pushing thoughts away, emptying my mind.

I built a wall, and put my thoughts, feelings, impressions and intuitions on one side. I put myself on the other side. There! Present. Finished.

Not so simple.

I discovered recently that by emptying my mind, I numb myself. I do not feel anything unless the intensity builds up and explodes in an outburst of tears, anger or stress. It accumulates and accumulates until I can’t take it anymore.

I think you know what I’m talking about.

I am now doing conscious feelings work, and I discover what being present truly means. I discover that I am more than a mind within a physical body. I have sadness. I have anger. I have fear, and joy. If I lower my numbness, I can feel my four feelings at all times. This allows me to discover what else happens in the present.

One thing I notice are the spaces within spaces.

Being in my bedroom is not like being in the kitchen, even though both spaces are in the house. This means that there are energetic spaces. One space is a sleeping space and another is a cooking space. The first space moves at a slower pace than the other. Every space has a different speed, purpose, quality, direction, and so on.

Having a conversation creates an energetic space. I sense this because I have an energetic body. My energetic body can be spread out in all directions, or contained in my bubble of space.

To practice being aware of my energetic body, I ask myself: “What is the purpose of this conversation? How fast is it moving? Where are ‘we’ going with this? What are ‘we’ getting out of this?”

While I consciously create connection with the other person, part of my energetic body can unconsciously create separation. The unconscious part of my energetic body can latch onto people, and pour life-energy into their energetic body to avoid the fear of being left alone, to manipulate them into sticking around.

The more I become conscious of my energetic body and the energetic space, the more I become present.

My intellectual ‘body’, my mind, loves receiving information from my emotional and energetic bodies. This information is nourishment for my intellect.

In the present, my intellectual body calculates, asks questions, creates connections, makes decisions, learns, and so on. It is completely occupied. When I am embodied, my mind does not need to jump to the future or dwell on the past for entertainment.

I notice that being aware of the sensations in my physical body, being aware of what I hear, smell and see allows me to become even more present. With my physical body, I identify which of the four feelings is predominant. The sensations also provide valuable information from my energetic body, with which I make my choices conscious.

Have you ever felt a ‘knowing’ tension in your body, a ‘gut feeling’?

In my experience, the ‘knowing’ impulses appear in my solar plexus as intuition, and at the back of my neck as my sense of purpose. Here, I taste the unique flavour of my mission on Earth, and what the next important step is.

This experience is what I call my Archetypal body.

I lived many years cut off from these subtle impulses. I felt fear that if I followed my purpose and my intuition, people would reject me. My impulses gave me tasks outside the realm of Modern Culture. I assumed that this meant there was something wrong with me.

I notice that I can more clearly access the impulses from my Archetypal body once I become present in my emotional, energetic, intellectual and physical bodies.

The more I experience my Archetypal body, the more I trust my purpose and the ever-unfolding service that I offer to Gaïa.

I am in Love with everything that is happening right Now. Time is irrelevant; it slows down and accelerates according to a different set of rules. The wall in my mind is obsolete — it is composting. I am more alive than ever before.

I am living a fully embodied life. I am living in five bodies: emotional, energetic, physical, intellectual and Archetypal.

Roadmap to Becoming Embodied

Phase 1: observation

1. For one week, observe the sensation of pain in your physical body, intellectual, emotional, energetic and Archetypal bodies. Observe the sensation of ecstasy in each body. Write your observations down.

2. For another week, observe the different kinds of foods that you give to your bodies. Obvserve what kinds of foods you do not give to your bodies. Do not change anything. What happens when you overfeed one body? What happens when you starve another?

Phase 2: practice

3. Read the 36-hour process website. Consider spending 36 hours or less in silence, without any technology, without any book or writing tools. This process allows you to consciously focus on feeding all of your bodies, without any distractions, so you can experience the Archetypal.

4. Inhabit your 5 bodies. Do not get out of bed until all of your bodies are awake. Check-in with your five bodies before going to sleep. Consciously feed your bodies, moment to moment, throughout the day. Speak from your physical body. What does that look or sound like? Speak from your energetic or Archetypal body, and see what happens. Keep becoming more and more embodied as a practice for the rest of your life.

I am a Gaïan Mage, co-creating Next Culture in Service to the Earth and all Her Beings while living a fully embodied and adventure-full life!