Paul Watkiss

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It's Not You, It's Me............?

By Paul Watkiss, 2017-02-18
It's Not You, It's Me.............?

Society largely considers what is normal by the agreed consensus of the majority. If I was in complete agreement with this then most of my communication in the outside world would consist of the phrase under which this is written.
Indeed being empathic ( energetically sensitive) I feel that many of us find growing up and maturing in the outside world something of a unique challenge.
At an early age we may discover that we are different from our peers and often our parents.
The constant emphasis when at school and by others on the physical, percievable, allegedly concrete world felt as if most people only lived in a 2D reality. Their world seemed to have little depth, a linear monologue of an existence.
My awareness of my sensitivity and my spiritual path are inextricably entwined. Indeed being energetically sensitive has helped create a somewhat unique spirituality in me that is reflected in many aspects of other belief systems ( that is Buddhism, Hinduism, Pantheism and Taoism to name a few).
Through many conversations that I have had with others with similar experiences it seems we have much in common when it comes to living our lives and the challenges we face. For example, having been born into a society which operates on a model that is the antithesis of what we feel to be right. This can lead to :
- subsequent feelings of loneliness and alienation which may lead to social withdrawal, addictive behaviors ( in order to numb our sensitivity) or wearing a socially acceptable mask in order to fit in.
If we do this however we compromise our ability to individuate and fully bloom into complete self actualization. This may leave us feeling unfulfilled and frustrated.
- having to constantly assert our needs to others as most people presume that our needs must be similar to theirs ( in terms of space, down time, opportunity to be creative etc)
- finding oneself in constant conflict with others and institutions that prioritize materialism and egotism
- having the desire for honest, open, loving human contact but mostly having to compromise due to the apparent lack of individuals who are unable to form relationships that do not involve some degree of attachment and / or dependence.

Despite the difficulties encountered on my path and the many years spent in a spiritual wilderness, it has all been worth it. For every challenge I have faced has shaped me and furthered my understanding of the world in which we live.
The ability to experience the external and internal worlds in such a searing depth and excruciating beauty has led to a true appreciation of lifes pulchritude.
Any solace that I have needed has come largely from my inner self and has not been found in relationships within my social circle. For those that have found some with others, you are truly fortunate.
So if over the years, you yourself have been your main source of solace, rest assured.
To have retained your authenticity and to still be here is testament to your inner strength and tenacity.
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Lest We Forget......

By Paul Watkiss, 2016-07-27
Lest We Forget............Summer and Winter solstices, Imbolc, Beltane, full and new moons et al all serve to point us to an awareness of the cycles of Nature of which we are inextricably linked. They provide mutually recognised events where we can feel more intensely our interconnectedness with the whole universe, events that have been part of our human history over the millennia.Often at these times the focus of our awareness is very much outside of ourselves, we become even more sensually sensitive to the ebb and flow of the seasons, the ever changing energy of the cosmos manifesting in a more profound and discernable manner.However, wherever we are, whatever time of day, whatever month in whatever season the cycles of life continue. Every single moment of our lives can offer us the opportunity for us to be aware of the subtle, yet energetic dance of Nature.Outside our windows, amongst the flora and fauna, we can observe more discernably how every single moment continously gives rise to many unique and never to repeated moments. Never again will that same snowflake fall, never again will the Sun and the wind combine to cast the same cloud shadows across the fields, never again will a flock of rooks swoop and caw in the same way again whether witnessed or not.Human religions have their own way of defining and celebrating the miracles of life, but in Nature every second is a celebration, an acknowledgement of the fantastic and diverse interplay of the universe, a neverending and reverential Nativity play with an infinite array of actors and actresses.From the shrill chorus of birdsong to the blossoming of the flowers and trees, we are, whether we allow ourselves or not to be aware, part of the eternal festival of Life.
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Being an Empath, a Blessing and a Curse

By Paul Watkiss, 2016-07-24
Being an Empath, both a Blessing and a Curse.........Just for clarification, I only really write from my own experience as this is as close to any kind of reality I can describe. Everyone has a unique way of viewing the world, therefore my hope is that some of my experiences and thoughts resonate with others and possibly help them at some stage with negotiating their way along life's often precarious and confusing path.I have been reflecting on my life prior to having discovered that I had empathic tendencies and have realised just how much chaos and confusion was as a result of my lack of understanding. I see many posts describing individuals situations to which I can all to easily relate.I dated a lady who was extremely emotionally unstable, she was quick to become overwhelmed with devastating negative feelings which all to easily transferred to me. I felt her despair, her nihilism, her ambivalence to life and death. In that ambivalence she had made herself free to act and not be concerned about the consequences. She was often in emotional and behavioral freefall, chaotically going from one disastrous and self damaging situation to another. Those feelings at that time I had felt to be mine also. I therefore acted in a similar manner, it was as if I was committing acts of deliberate self harm to myself and my life. Thankfully much time has passed but when I look back I feel that being empathic allowed me to experience these emotions in a way that has helped me understand others in a way that is unique. I truly do know what emotions and feelings certain people are experiencing and this has helped myself to assist others through difficult times in their life.Previous to becoming aware of my empathic side I also have felt great sorrow, great fury, great peace and great love to name a few emotions. At that time, as I had attributed those emotions to myself I fully experienced them, I lived them and was consumed by them. So although historically my life has been a complete emotionally supercharged mess, I have seemingly come out the other side with a wealth of compassion and understanding that otherwise I would not have had.For me the key to being more conscious of my empathic involvement with others has been meditation. Meditation has allowed me to simply observe my thoughts and emotions dispassionately making the much easier to monitor and control. Also through meditation, spiritual insights have occurred which have shown me that I am not an independently existing entity but that I am part of the vastness of the universe, a wave in the ocean of life and matter. Through these insights the ego diminishes and can be lost. This knowledge has turned being an empath from being a curse to a blessing. I have realised that my life isn't necessarily about me, it's about what I can to others in the hope of promoting love, compassion and understanding. However if we interpret our empathic / sensitive experiences on from an egoic and an "I" centered belief system, that is when it can be a curse.
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As One.......?

By Paul Watkiss, 2016-06-07
As One.............?As a spiritually inclined empathic type of individual I at times am able to lose myself and seemingly energetically merge with my surroundings. No more so than when I amongst nature. However from an energetic perspective some places are far more powerful than others and these tend to be numinously charged. There are many places I have visited where I have been able to become absorbed into the quintessential unity of myself, the earth, the trees and the universe as a whole. When this happens, time too changes, the latent energies of humans and animals who have been here in the past entwine with my current energy to create a vibrant symphony of Oneness. My senses no longer individually feedback to me their unique perceptions, I become completely unified with all there is. Every rainstorm, every drought, every snowfall, every imprint of every moment here becomes as one with my memories.Many of these sites are ancient places of worship, that is holy wells, stone circles and henges. The sensual power that individuals have left behind in their reverence and subjugation to nature and the Earth, their unique intimacy with the world and the cosmos is revealed to me and incorporated into my soul.No wonder the hills and groves were God's first temples, and the more they are cut down and hewn into cathedrals and churches, the farther off and dimmer seems the Lord himself. - John Muir.
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On Being Empathic

By Paul Watkiss, 2016-05-16
On Being Empathic........I'm not keen on labels or words that identify traits ( although I understand that they are necessary in terms of describing people etc) as individuals are always so much more than a collection of unlinked descriptive adjectives.That being said, I agree that I fit the criteria of being ' empathic'. It's a strange gift to have, that is to say it is not formally recognised and far more people know nothing about it than do. It's not easy to bring up in conversation, it's not something that you can put on your CV as a skill or pastime yet to me it is as real and tangible as anything in my life that I consider as 'reality'.I often doubt myself on occasions, am I crazy? Am I delusional?Nevertheless I seem to be unerringly accurate, I feel others emotional frequency, their needs, desires, their potential futures and their past. Their past to the point that I see the child within the adult. And if you need 'fixing' I am more than capable of helping.However this is where I may jeopardise myself. I can see, hear and feel you in great depth and you will know that too. The jeopardy comes from myself as I unconsciously and for me, naturally begin to heal all your wounds. My energy transfers to you, to fill all those needs that have been left unrequited, to soothe you, to make you feel more 'whole'.The risk is that from experience I may lose myself, become lost in you. I may be entirely absorbed into your world and lose any sense of self. When this has happened before, especially in close relationships, the closeness that I feel is intense but has inevitably lead to me being discarded once all my 'healing' has been utilised by the other. They have then moved on, stronger than before but at the expense of my love. This lesson I have learnt the hard way.
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Suffer not the Children

By Paul Watkiss, 2016-04-29

For me, having what can only be described as 'empathic' tendencies means many things, far too many to mention here. One of the main ones however is that I tend to know why others act in certain ways or become the people they are. Most individual characteristics be it the ability to empathise, enjoy or not enjoy certain aspects of life or whatever seem to stem from childhood experience. The spoilt child who feels they have a right to certain things, the fatherless or motherless child who may seek to compensate in their own adult relationships. Most people seem to me to either be indifferent to other peoples suffering or seem all to ready to create it in order to promote themselves in some way.

The point I'm making is that an empaths life can often feel lonely because whereas many people judge, castigate and ridicule others, we, myself included feel nothing but compassion. Compassion is a really difficult thing to share I find as many see it as weak or being too 'soft'.
However it is extremely important to maintain this attitude in the face of such lack of understanding. It is even more difficult as we often find ourselves alone in our compassion for others.
As has already been said, we need to be the change we wish to see in others.

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By Paul Watkiss, 2016-03-02


I believe many of us who have some degree of empathic trait have found themselves walking a more spiritual path for many reasons, one of which ( and I include myself ) is due to traumatic events in our younger years. These have led us to question our lives and society as well as to seek out why many problems exist for us as humans. These are my current thoughts :

I'm quite cynical about academic qualifications which seem to have to be a precursor for anyone to be able to publically comment on life and its themes / goals etc. Academia in any subject because of its very nature serves to blinker the individual to their field whereas in real life there is no black and white, no discernable division between anything only what the human mind and senses suggest.

At a very basic level it seems individuals have varying degrees of awareness outside themselves. There are those whose life is lived in a very mechanical, egoistic manner where little or nothing is percieved outside of themselves . For want of a better term there are then perhaps HSP's and people with empathic qualities who are able to understand and incorporate others emotions and feelings in an altruistic way. This then gives rise to a more holistic approach to living in that any other is not just discounted.

One could say individuals can go further, indeed the experience of Advaita suggest that perhaps the ultimate reality is one of nonduality ( as suggested by quantum physics and many Eastern belief systems ).

The fact is that as a species the human race lives a paradoxical reality. In that as humans we all have more or less the same needs i.e. to be safe, secure, loved, acknowledged, to protect those we care for and to fight those that may threaten us. Thus most our life and energy is spent ensuring a basic level of survival, that is survival of the self and those close to us. This however is in contrast to those people who have seen beyond this and have to acknowledge that in some way we are all individually responsible for the wellbeing of all others, perhaps even of other life forms be it plants and animals. To a lesser degree the need to minimise any harm which may be a result of our actions.

If everyone was to accept this idea it would radically turn around human ( and the planets ) pattern of existence. We would have to accept our presence as only part of an immeasurably linked web of co-existence and thus remove ourselves from being a dominating force in the suppression of other species and as a parasitic race upon the Earth.

For this to happen is almost unimaginable as the dropping of I ness and ego centred behaviour by individuals and countries would lead them to perhaps being vulnerable to exploitation by others who cannot or are unable to subscribe to this premise. There is therefore seen the need to continue the idea of dualities / distinctions and the existence of others.

The only other that ways the change may materialise is possibly

  • a slow, gradual change in individual consciousness over time leading to an eventual consensus of understanding. This is hard to believe as despite our access to information / education is now so more than ever there seems to be no shift in perspective.

  • -The other possibility is that due to some man made or natural catastrophe that the human developmental path is altered drastically and a new set of constructs emerge with the change necessitated by this substantial catalyst.

The latter could almost be seen as the planets / universes response to creating a more cohesive and less damaging ecosystem in which the world could exist more equitably. There may of course be other ways in which this transformation may take place, one can only guess.

In summary, there are many ideas / beliefs that falsely separate us as humans I.e I am a Christian / Buddhist / agnostic/ conservative/socialist. Also in terms of identifying oneself as a human and not part of the 'whole', the planet,the Universe. As long as humans think and act in terms of divisive adjectives and differentiate themselves from the whole of existence I feel our fate is predestined. One only has to look at the age of the Earth and the Universe to realise that our manifestation is most likely to be an indiscernable blip in the stream of time.

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Born into a Dream

By Paul Watkiss, 2016-03-01

We know you know.......

That feeling of being in isolation ( in terms of how we view life through the ego and the subsequent mass delusion of society itself ) is an unnatural state.
Although we do not 'remember' as such, at some level most of us are aware that living life as a human who's actions in life are the result of a belief of being separate is a falsehood.
Perhaps before we are 'born' and when we 'die' part of us again becomes seamlessly one with the universe, our essence again dissolved into all that is, into being complete, into peace.

As humans we seek a barely identifiable unity, a feeling of wholeness, of being complete. Some seek it through relationships, some through goal achievement, some through spiritual means and some still through intoxication of the senses leading to a dissolvement of the perceived boundaries of self.

This has gone on through all of man's existence and can be seen by his past and current belief systems i.e. building of stone circles ( signifying perhaps a 'unity' ), animism and actions to enable insight through meditation and prayer for instance.

Frustratingly many of us are aware that society largely is constructed in a way that works against this understanding.
How different life and relationships would be if from childhood we were all brought up with a sense of oneness with the world and each other.

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