In Part I of this article Lazaris talked about the first three faces of the Soul — the Name, the Power, and the Eternal Youth. In this, the second part of a partial transcription of a Lazaris Weekend entitled ‘The Soul’s Path,’ Lazaris begins with a discussion of The Wounding which follows The Eternal Youth and traces the remainder of The Soul’s Path.
The wounding is when the wind gets knocked out of you. It’s when the fire gets extinguished. You crash and burn. This is a time when you are punched in the gut, when the fire of The Eternal Youth is extinguished. The Wounded Soul comes and breaks your back. It breaks your invincibility. It breaks your delusions. At first it seems cruel, for in so doing, it cuts the umbilical cord, and you are abandoned. Your Soul is wounded, a self-inflicted wound. Your Soul bleeds.
As we’ve often said, for some the Wounding is a great event, a major crisis, one you know well. For others it may have been but a straw that broke the camel’s back, as the cliche says, a feather that tipped the scale in a delicate balance of pain.
It always happens quickly. It might have been that summer when a counselor, or a bunkmate or cabinmate, did something that they shouldn’t have — something that ripped or shredded your self-esteem or your self-respect and self-image. It might have been the throw-off phrase from your mother or father. It might have been a phrase or incident that meant nothing to others, but that pierced you, cut you, made you bleed.
Traditionally and classically, for women it was the menses, the beginning of the menstrual cycle, when you bleed and realize you’re now a woman. You’re now fertile. You’re now capable of mothering. You’re no longer a little girl. You’re now a woman.
For men traditionally, it is a time of the hubris being broken. In the chauvinism of society, boys are given power and privilege because of their gender. Further, they are expected to live up to standards that are defined by their gender. The result: male hubris. When the hubris of that time of pride and invincibility was broken, you realized: I’m no longer a boy. I am now a man.
But The Wounding is not limited to the classic. And certainly in your world, where the mythology is now technology, those Woundings take all kinds of forms. It is a time when your back is broken. It is a time when because of the hubris, because of the invincibility, you fly too close to the sun. Your fire consumes too much, and you crash and burn, and a big wind blew out that fire.
It is more than hurt. It is pain. And something died then. Something died.
Up to this point you had the Name, the first clues of destiny. Then there was the Power, the first throes of personality, of power, of identity taking form. Then came the Eternal Youth with its sense of invincibility, its glimpse beyond the horizon, beyond the cracks and crevices, into a world that had not yet been. And each of the phases and Faces of the Soul was an expansion. You were expanding and expanding, and then … In the Wounding you were punched, cut in a moment. And in a flash the expansion was gone.
The Wounding is perhaps the briefest face of the Soul, but it is one that lasts. For many it lasts all their lives. Most people spend the rest of their lives licking that wound, and thus never letting it heal. They react and respond for the rest of their lives, pretending that the Wound never happened, that it didn’t affect them — not really. Most people spend the rest of their lives running from that Wound.
The wound was not a mistake. It was not something you did wrong. It’s not as if ‘had you done it differently, had you not been so arrogant, this would never have happened.’
It had to happen. It is the fourth birthing, when you sever from the umbilical of God/Goddess/All That Is. When you are born of the placenta of that Wounding, you come forth and really give birth to the self — not to the illusion of a physical body, or the abstraction of emotion and thought which had happened in the three Faces of the Soul thus far. This fourth phase is the real birth of you, the birth of the real you.
You see, up to this point, you’d been filled with all the images mothers and fathers give you, all the images teachers give you, all the images that authority figures, whoever they might be, give you. Up to this point you were motivated in a negative way by their desires, for ambition which is not your own is always negative ambition. Up to this point your sense of what it is to be a man or a woman was defined by your mother or your father, depending on which of them predominated. Their chauvinistic view — their twisted view of what it meant to be a man or what it meant to be a woman — defined you, your hopes, your dreams. Maybe your own dreams were present, but they were riddled and polluted with other people’s hopes and dreams. Your identity, your motivation, your drive — if any part of them was present, it was polluted.
There had to come a point where you severed that tie, where you broke from that past, from that family, from all that was fed into you so that you could consciously pick and choose, so that you could consciously decide — so that you could consciously develop your own parenting, your own inner child and adolescent, your own identity as a man or as a woman, your own motivation, your own drive, and your own relationship with God/Goddess/All That Is. The tie had to be severed. Your Soul tried to teach you and reach you at that time, but for so many of you, the pain was overwhelming.
It happens quickly. There may be many incidents, but one of them caused the snap, the break, the plunging of the knife, the punching in the gut — however you tend to symbolize it — where the wind was knocked out of you, and you crashed and burned.
The Wounding may occur prior to puberty, but it cannot happen in your early childhood. It cannot happen then. Now an incident of the same nature could happen then, but it won’t wound you. It may wound, but it won’t be The Wound, because, quite frankly, you’re just too young. You don’t have enough of your Name, enough of your Power, enough of that testing of Power, or enough of that invincibility of The Eternal Youth. You’ve got to have that first, because if you’re only two feet off the ground, no matter how hard you fall, it’s very difficult to crash and burn. You’ve got to be way up there, and then …boom! You’ve got to be filled with fire. You’ve got to be consumed.
So it cannot occur when you’re two years old. You were wounded most likely, but it wasn’t The Wounding. It is the fourth Face, not the second, not the first, not the third. It’s the fourth. So although there may be horrific experiences, though there may be many experiences that wounded you, that produced enough pain that a part of you died, it was not The Wounding. Maybe the one that was The Wounding, as we say, was exactly the same thing. But because of the set and setting in which it happened, this time it didn’t just wound you, it wounded your very Soul.
It may have occurred in a pre-pubescent time. However, most often it occurs between 14 to 18. For some of you late bloomers, some of you holding out in your reverie of Eternal Youth, it did not happen until you were in your late teens or early twenties. Usually not past that. By that time it’s happened.
At that point the fire was extinguished in an explosion where the oxygen was removed and the fire was extinguished. What was left was smoke, shadows. And thus comes the Face of the Shadow.
For so long this Face has been seen as the dark face, the ugly face, the terrifying face, the nightmarish face, the mistake, the black sheep of your Soul, the bad one. Perhaps it is the most compassionate one of all. This face of your Soul loves you so phenomenally, for it is the one who comes when you are broken. It is the one who comes when you are bleeding. Not that the others love you less, not that the others have less compassion, but this one perhaps demonstrates that love most completely — certainly for the longest period of time, for it is the major face of your Soul. And you crash and burn. And the earth, and the water, and the fire and the air are sucked down. And you take them all into the Shadow, down into your Unconscious.
Now you may well have been dumping things in your Unconscious already. You may have learned as a child: Stop that imagination. Stop that creativity. Stop being so vocal. Stop being so much the center of attention. Stop this. Stop that. Don’t ask so many questions. Don’t be this way. Don’t be so curious. Don’t be so .. Don’t be … Don’t be.
Some of you said, ‘Naaaah!’ Others of you said, ‘OK,’ and you stuffed it. You’ve been dumping things into your Unconscious all along, certainly so. Certainly ugly things, certainly fearful things, yes, but also some beautiful things. But at the time of the Wounding, it all gets sucked in. And that’s important to understand. It all gets sucked down:
Your Name gets sucked down. You feel a loss of identity. You don’t matter. You’re not important. Nobody cares. Nobody loves you. Your name is stupid. You are stupid. Your existence is stupid, as you pull your Name — whose element is the earth -inside of you.
Any sense of power? Forget it. You’re weak. You’re impotent. You’re useless. You’re valueless. You’ve nothing to offer. You’ll never amount to anything. You decide that at this time. And you pull your Power — the river, the flow, the Power whose element is water — down deep inside of you. And your personality now becomes persona. It has been raped, it has been ravaged. And it has been tossed aside in the heap, pulled inside of you to be replaced with the persona: OK, I’ll give you what you want.
Your sense of invincibility, your sense of adventure, your sense of excitement, your sense of wonder, your sense of awe has been totally sucked inside. The fire of the Eternal Youth is sucked down. And you hate life, and you hate the world, and there’s no way out, and it’s only dark, and it’s only ugly. And you never want to … and maybe you just want to die at that moment, at that time.
And likewise, the Wounding itself, with its element of air, is sucked down in.
And then comes the face of the Shadow, which is the etheric — the combination of earth and water and fire and air. And you go deep into the womb of your own being in the dark place where it’s moist, where it’s damp. Some become brooding. Some become lifeless/listless. Some become defensive. Some become arrogant with chips on their shoulders, bitter and angry. All of you are hurt.
Then comes the Shadow. The Shadow comes at the time of Wounding, and stays with you until your mid-50s. So calculate the number of years. Of all of the Faces of the Soul, it is with you the longest.
You are supposed to go into the Shadow. That’s the right thing. You didn’t blow it. You didn’t do it wrong. You’re supposed to do that. You’re supposed to drag all this stuff down with you.
But, you see, what you’re supposed to do then is to heal it — to allow the Wound to be healed, to listen to your Soul, to let it explain why it had to happen, where you would have gone had it not happened, why you had to be tethered, why you had to be reined in, why you had to be yanked out of the sky and crashed into the earth. Had you not been, this would have been a wasted lifetime, because you would not have been you. You would have been an extension of somebody else — a twisted, hollow extension. It had to happen.
With the denial of spirituality, however, for many the Wound is never healed. It’s supposed to be that in this Shadow place you learn the secrets, you understand. You start looking at what your name is, at what your destiny is, at what your power is. What is your passion? your fire? And what is your breath of change, of transcendence, of transformation? You are, from this Shadow, supposed to emerge into this world to test out what you learn, to try things out to see what works. And then you go back into the Shadow again to redirect. You come out, go in, come out, go in. Your growth is cyclical. There are times to be in the world, and times to remove yourself from the world. There is time to be out there, and time to be inside. There is a time when you are supposed to try things out, to experiment in this grand playground, to learn how to play the games and to create new games.
And when the rules don’t work, or when your technique is faulty, you go back in and find out why — back into that warm, moist place that is your Shadow. You go back into the Underworld. You go back into the Unconscious, back to your Soul, your Higher Self, and the various spaces/aspects of who you are to learn, to grow, to experiment, to try, to work with it.
The Shadow is with you from the time when you’re roughly 16 to the time you’re about 56. That’s 40 years, and for many, sadly, that’s more than half a lifetime. Most of you are now in your Shadow time. The Wave Generation — that bulge in worldwide population called the baby boom — is in the Shadow, in the time of mid-life.
Do you realize that in the next five years there will be more women in menopause than there has ever been in the history of your planet? It is an incredibly powerful time. Now we know in your world menopause is not considered powerful. But remember, your world is a chauvinistic world which sees most feminine functions as dirty and distasteful and a source of embarrassment. But it is an incredibly powerful time, that stage of one’s life in the latter part of the Shadow years.
Men go through a menopause as well, of a different nature, of a different kind. And it also comes in the latter years of the Shadow. In your mid-to late-forties, for men and women alike. This is the Shadow time.
After the Shadow comes the sixth Face of the Soul, that of The Double. The Double comes when you emerge from the Shadow, having experimented, having explored, having tried everything out, having made the mistakes that you are supposed to make and the mistakes that you’re not supposed to make.
This is when you come out into the world, when you come out of the Shadow to be your full and total self. This is when women, past their menopause now, come into the time when they can be who they are fully and completely. Men (if they handle it right) can be past the imprisonment of other people’s definitions of manhood and can truly discover their whole self. Finally, you can be who you want to be, and be who you intended to be. You can fully come into the time of wisdom. It happens in the mid-fifites or early sixties. It varies. Again, it’s not absolute.
This is the time when many, emerging from the Shadow but not having done the Shadow Work, long for that Eternal Youth, long for that passion, long for that time, and try to go back there. You never can. You didn’t have it then, and you’re not going to get it now.
Others, recognizing that sad truth, come out of the Shadow and sit in the sun and wait to die. On the East Coast it’s called ‘moving to Florida.’ They get a condo and wait to die. ‘Move the parents to Florida. Move them to Sun City. Move them to the Southwest where it’s hot, but it’s dry heat.’ So many either wait to die or long for and chase after a youth they never had.
Some, having taken advantage of the Shadow, emerge and become wise and have a life that they’ve been waiting to live — a life filled with their dreams and their desires and their powers and their grounding and their passion. These people don’t have the fire of a teenager. They have the glow of a mature fire, and their fire does burn eternal. You’ve seen some of them in your life, these older people who glow, who radiate, who have
a wisdom, who are living the fullness.
It doesn’t have to wait until then. You can become wise much earlier than the time of the Double, but just in case you don’t, that Face of the Soul will show up and force you out of the Shadow. What you do as you face yourself is make the decision: Am I going to go back and try to live my parents’ life or my children’s life? Am I going to live my life? Or am I going to die?
And the choice is made then. In your mid-fifties you decide. Oh, the health problems may not show up for a decade or two, but the decision is made. For those of you who decide to try to return to the youth, the senility won’t set in for another couple of decades, but it’ll be there. And between the choice and the senility, you can make a fool of yourself, that’s so.
And the decision to be wise? Though the wisdom may not attach to you then, it will be there.
The final Face of the Soul, the last face, is that of The Remain. It comes at your time of dying, and at the times when you might die. When you choose to die, it ushers you out and watches over the remain. If you choose not to, it retreats, and waits. At the end of life, it is this Face of the Soul that comes to you to usher you out of the body. It has been called Death, or the Grim Reaper, but it is the Soul with the Face of the Remain.
At times of near-death experience, it is also the Soul that comes to you. It is often the one who sends you back. ‘No, not yet.’ It comes at times when you are hurt and in pain. Not hurt alone, but hurt that is pain. When a part of you dies, it is the Remain that comes. Those of you who have worked with healing and have gone through the experience of The Valley of Lost Souls, it is that Soul, the Remain, that travels nightly, waiting for you to retrieve yourself, watching over you, because your Soul will never abandon you … Your Soul will never abandon you.
And therefore, the Face of the Remain also shows up at the time of the Wounding. But it is the Shadow Soul that picks you up, and starts putting you back together again.
Those are the Faces. And you can see how you can get so misguided and off-course in a world that denies the very existence of Soul. It is the Soul that keeps your course of growth according to your pattern, according to your rhythm, that allows and makes sure that the ebbs and flows happen, and that the waxings and wanings occur as well. It is your Soul that nudges you — maybe bumps you — when you get off-course. It is your Soul that lets you know when it is time to change course, when it’s time to move up an octave.
Now there is a tendency, because of the natural propensity for hierarchy, to try to figure out: ‘Well, where does it fit? Is my Soul above or below my Higher Self? Where are my counselors?’ You kind of have God/Goddess/All That Is at the top, OK, and after that it gets pretty nebulous, between Them and you.
Let the Soul be a part of your team. It’s not better than your Higher Self; nor is your Higher Self better than it is. But it’s there with its many faces. The Soul holds secrets that only it can reveal even, though certainly we could assume your Higher Self, being who it is, knowing all, knows those secrets.
But there are secrets of the Soul that can only be learned from the Soul, not because they have priority or hierarchy, but because the Soul has the resonance, the energy, the essence that comes to live with those Secrets.
Perhaps moving beyond the Faces of the Soul into the Dialogues with the Divine, beyond the Faces to that One Soul is where the secrets lie — not in the hierarchy, but in the resonance, the connection, the essence of being in communication with your Soul. It holds the destiny. It holds the power. It holds the talent, and the means and the wherewithal to discover and have your talent revealed …
With love and peace …