Abundant Spirituality + codependence recovery + inner child healing + Love = Joy2MeULogo of Joy to You & Me Enterprises, publisher of Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls Joy2MeU Home Page
This is the Newsletter of the Joy2MeU web site of codependency therapist, inner child healing pioneer, Spiritual teacher Robert Burney - who is the author of the Joyously inspirational book of Cosmic Spirituality: Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls.  These Update Newsletters are posted about 5 times a year at 2 to 3 month intervals.  A short announcement e-mail is sent out notifying people who sign up for the Joy2MeU e-mailing list when a new Update is posted. (e-mail link bottom of page)
Joy to You & Me and Joy2MeU Update
 Happy New Year to all the Magnificent Spiritual Beings on my e-mailing list,

Hi everybody.  Here it is 2002.  Amazing.  It seems like only a couple of days ago that it felt like it was going to be really strange for it not to be 1990 something.  On the other hand it feels like 1999 was several lifetimes ago.  My growth process has provided me with several lifetimes of learning since then anyway.

On New Years Day of 1999, a friend sent me a quote that I had seen previously but needed to see again at that time.  I think I would like to start off 2002 by sharing it with you.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.

 Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.

 It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.

 We ask ourselves, "Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?"

 Actually, who are you not to be?

 You are a child of God.

 Your playing small doesn't serve the world.

 There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you.

 We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us: it's in everyone.

 And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.

 As we are liberated from our own fears, our presence automatically liberates others."

 1994 Inaugural Speech
 Nelson Mandela

I believe that Marianne Williamson actually wrote this and Nelson Mandela used it without attribution.  (8/1/04 It turns out that attributing the quote to Nelson Mandela's inaugural speech is one of those internet myths - something that never happened.  Thanks to John F. for letting me know the straight scoop on this.)  It is a wonderful quote in any event.  In my article on New Age Misinterpretations of Metaphysical Truth, and again in the online book that I just finished, I express my extreme displeasure with some things that Marianne has to say - but this is one of her gems.

The Truth that resonates in this quote is an important reminder of who we Truly are.  The natural reaction to reading this for most codependents is to judge and beat ourselves up for not being as en-Light-ened as we "should" be by this time. 

It is important to remember the Truth in this quote - and to remember that we need to learn to let the Light shine within, in our relationship with ourselves first and foremost.  As I discuss towards the end of my book Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls, there are some very good reasons that we have incredible resistance to owning our power - to owning, and opening up to, the Love and Light that is our True essence.  Shining the Light within starts with learning to stop judging ourselves for where we are at on our path.  Manifesting Love into the world has to start at home by learning to stop giving power to the "shoulds" and the comparisons of the critical parent voice within.

An analogy that I find useful - and have heard myself sharing in several 12 step meetings recently - is that recovery is like climbing a huge mountain.  If I stop and look at how far I have to go, I can feel overwhelmed - and my disease will try to beat me up.  It is important for me to remind myself that it is the disease / critical parent voice that wants me:  to feel overwhelmed and hopeless;  to compare myself negatively to other people;  and to judge myself against false and unreasonable expectations of perfection - of where I "should" be.  The only comparison that is helpful to me occasionally is to compare where I am now to where I used to be. (Where I used to be in my True emotional reality - not the longing for the good old days of denial the disease tries to get us to indulge in occasionally.)  It is important for me periodically to stop and look back at how far I have come - and both congratulate myself for the actions I have been willing to take to align with healing, and express gratitude for the guidance and the miracles that have been part of my climb.  Most of the time it is best just to stay focused on what is in right in front of me, with just an occasional glance upward towards what feels like the next milestone I am heading for (not all the way to the top) - just to make any adjustments in direction that may seem helpful.  In writing the Newsletter portion of this Update (I guess you noticed that I am trying out a new format) I got in touch with a slight adjustment in my focus for the coming year.

Additions to the web site since the October Update:

Chapters 7, 8, 9, 10, & 11 of online book Attack on America: A Spiritual Healing Perspective & Call for Higher Consciousness (which can still only be accessed starting with Chapter 1.)   These chapters included two new articles in the Inner Child Healing Section of the web site: Grieving - examples of how the process worksCo-Creation: Owning your Power to Manifest Love - codependency recovery, also added was a Contents page that gives quotes and summaries of the Chapters.

I added the Acknowledgments page from my book to the web site for the first time, you can find it on the page with the Author's Foreword

Five new resources on the Finding CoDA meetings page - San Francisco Bay Area Co-Dependents Anonymous web site, Northern Georgia including Atlanta, and a Philadelphia Area CoDA site. Also Ottawa Canada and Berlin Germany.

New testimonials for phone counseling, book & web site, three new book stores that have stocked Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls, a new award and two new links have been added - all of which can be found on the New Page.

I added a new therapist in Texas and a resource in Detroit to the Referral to local Therapist / Counselors page, and made a change on the Translation page from a link that wasn't working to the Google translation program.
Graphic of two hearts with an arrow through them - signifying both Love and heartbreak.
Links to past Update Newsletters for the Joy2MeU site (launched February 4, 1999) can be found on the Information index page.  Links to the Newsletters of my original Joy to You & Me web site (launched February 28, 1998) can be found on the Joy to You & Me page which list pages from that site not moved to Joy2MeU.

Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls

New people are finding my site at an ever increasing rate - and I am adding several hundred more addresses to the e-mailing list for this Update.  That is great.  Thanks to all of you who are spreading the word by sharing the Joy2MeU address with friends or posting it on discussion boards and in online communities. 

It is pretty common for people who find the site to assume that they can go out and find my book at their local book stores.  Unfortunately that is not true in most cases.  I raised the money to publish the book myself, and have never had the kind of money it would take to promote it on any large scale.  I, in fact, got myself in pretty severe financial circumstances with the attempts I did make to market it.  Thanks to the internet, the word of mouth is spreading and more people are discovering my book all the time.  At this time, the easiest, fastest and cheapest way to get my book is to order it directly from me through my web site.  I have secure credit card processing on my ordering page  - and sell it for a price (both domestically and internationally) which includes shipping and ends up costing you about a $1 below the retail price of $14.95.  I also recently added a service called PayPal which allows a person to purchase on the internet with either credit card or withdrawal from checking account.  If you do not feel comfortable using a credit card online or the PayPal service, you can mail me a check - the address is also on that page.  And any of the ways you buy it directly from me you get it signed to you personally. ;-) 

Also on the book ordering page, is a link to Amazon.com where you can buy it at retail plus shipping.   The book is also available through Barnes & Noble or Borders by special order - they both order it all the time, but it takes longer since they then have to get it from me.  There is a Book info page on the web site that is designed to be printed out and taken to any book store so that they can then order it from me. 

An Addition

One of the things that I wanted to announce in this Update is an addition that I made to a previously published article.  As part of Chapter 10 of the online book that I just finished about the Attack on America, I wrote a page for the Inner Child Healing section of the web site - like the page on Grieving that I wrote as part of Chapter 8 of that online book.  This regular web page is called:  Co-Creation: Owning your Power to Manifest Love.  It is focused on how valuable detachment - developing an observer level of consciousness - is to the recovery process.  After I published that page, I realized that I didn't feel I had been clear enough on how developing that detached, observer consciousness related to doing the emotional work.  I then added another section to that page.  Because I have already heard from a number of you who read that article, I decided to include the additional section here in my Update so that anyone who has already read the Co-Creation article will not miss it.  Here it is:

additional level of consciousness

"I realized after posting this page that I wasn't sure if I had been clear that I was not talking about detachment as a way to avoid feeling the feelings.  I am referring to developing an additional level of consciousness where we can be watching ourselves at the same time we are feeling the feelings.  A level of consciousness from the adult on a Spiritual path, the recovery control center, that can help us align with the grieving process and release the emotional energy.  We can be the recovering adult who is observing from a nurturing and Loving place at the same time we are experiencing the feelings of the 5 year old, or 9 year old, or 23 year old, or whatever.  We can be in the feelings and observing ourselves grieving at the same time.

This level of consciousness is from a higher perspective.  It is an additional level of consciousness that we cultivate and develop by more clearly tuning in to, concentrating our attention on, our intuition - the "small quiet voice" - and consciously choosing to give power to the Spiritual Truth we resonate with instead of our emotional truth and mental programming from childhood.   By cultivating this detached perspective - detached from our ego experience of being human - we can observe both the mental and emotional levels of our being from a more discerning perspective.  It facilitates changing the intellectual programming and taking some of the terror out of healing the emotional wounds.  It allows us to set internal boundaries - within, and between, the mental and emotional levels of our being.

When I speak of a detached observer perspective, I am not talking about the kind of observation that is taught in some spiritual meditation practices.  Many people use that type of observation as a way to avoid feeling the feelings.  That type of detachment from emotions is what some people experience on anti-depressants.  Some people use chanting and meditation as anti-depressants.  Chanting and meditation can be invaluable tools but applied in an imbalanced manner can, like positive affirmations, be used as tools to deny feelings. 

Just observing the feelings does not heal them;  does not fundamentally change our relationship patterns;  does not make our fear of intimacy go away.  We need to feel, experience, and release the emotional energy in order to heal the wounds and take power away from them.

We need to feel the feelings but learn how not to be the victim of them / of our reactions.  I am talking about a detached observer consciousness that gives us the power to choose how to respond when one of our grief / rage buttons has been pushed.  An emotional wound can be triggered and we can make a conscious choice that it is not safe to feel and release those feelings in that moment.  Then, we have a choice about how we are going to respond in the now, and later we can do the grief work when it is safe and appropriate to do it.

We do not avoid feeling the feelings.  We gain some power over when and where we feel the feelings.  Detachment, as it applies to the inner child healing process in my approach, is a technique that fosters empowerment and response-ability, not emotional denial.  Detachment is a dynamic technique, a method of consciously relating to our internal process, that is an integral and invaluable step in consciousness raising / enlightenment / awakening / recovery / healing / empowerment."

 Newsletter Portion of Update 

The Newsletter portion of this web site got out of control and went some places I wasn't expecting it to go.  I started writing it on January 3 as the date above indicates - and have been trying to get it to behave so that I can get this Update posted.  It is now January 8th, and I have just surrendered to posting it separately from this section of the Update.  I had accepted several days ago that it was going to require more than one web page, but I was trying to get it under control so that I could post both pages at the same time.  It is not to be, the way I thought it should be.  Oh well, what else is new.

I think it is some valuable information.  I know it has been valuable for me to write it anyway.  And there are a few interesting turns of a phrase in it that I really like.  I will give you a sampling of a few just to whet your appetite.  ;-)

"The basic, human ego, avoidance of pain, level of motivation led me to start getting more conscious of Spiritual levels of motivation.  And it was Spiritual levels of motivation that led me to awakening to the cause and effect dynamic of life.  It was following my intuitive guidance (making choices that felt like moments of clarity and inspiration at the time) that led to the seemingly disastrous results which forced me to start waking up to what a mess my life was - and then to realizing that I could do some things to change that reality.  What felt to me like tragedy, was in fact the gift of a new beginning - the start of a new life.  (That disastrous relationship / job loss / health problem / drunk driving arrest / etc., had/has a silver lining - and the choices you made that got you to that point were a perfect part of your awakening process.)

On the Spiritual level of motivation, it is the emotional energy of Truth that provides my intuitive guidance.  Truth - with a capital T - is a form of communication from my Soul to my being.  It is something that I feel within - that resonates vibrationally in my consciousness.  My consciousness exists throughout my body, and intuitive Truth resonates most often in my heart and / or my gut.  It is kind of like one of those silent pagers that vibrates.  That feeling in our gut, or our chest, is a page from the Universe letting us know that a message has just been delivered.  The "aha", light bulb going on, moments of insight and clarity, are accompanied by a vibrational page in our physical / emotional being. 

If we are conscious enough to pay attention, we can feel our pager go off and know the Universe is sending us a message.  If we are indulging in our human propensity to go unconscious - which is exacerbated by the denial and emotional disassociation of the codependent defense system we were forced to adapt in childhood - then the Universe needs to use the stick, to get loud and intrusive, to get our attention.  Neither way is shameful - but paying attention is a lot easier.

It is not human needs and desires that cause suffering, it is looking to get those needs fulfilled in someplace where they cannot be fulfilled that causes suffering.  It has been trying to quench our thirst from an empty well that is dysfunctional.

Humans have been trying to fill the hole within ourselves by looking outside of ourselves.  We were taught to look outside, to external manifestations to meet our needs, to find out who we are and why we are here.

The answers do not exist outside - the answers lie within.

The reason that humans have not been able to "get it together" is that we have been looking outside for "it."  "It" exists only within.  We need to look in-to-it.  As in intuition:  in-tu-it."

(Text in this color are quotes from Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls by Robert Burney)
"One of the hardest things for me to learn to accept was my humanness.  I am an imperfect, self centered, selfish, lazy, needy, scared, lonely, flawed, wounded human being on one level.  That is not shameful or bad.  It is part of reality that I need to accept.  It is not who I am - it is a part of me, a level of my being.  I do not have to shame myself for that part of me - and, thanks to recovery, I don't have to let that level of my being run my life anymore.
The human part of me always wants the easier, softer way.  Recovery is a process of teaching my human self that recovery is the easier, softer way.  It does not work for me to try to control life.  It is ultimately much easier for me to align with the healing process than to resist it.  Trying to force the Universe to do things my way does not work.  Surrendering to my Higher Power's plan always works out better in the long run.

Resisting growth is not bad or wrong or shameful - it is human.  It is also dysfunctional.  It does not work.  Aligning with growth and healing is what helps me to learn to let go of "my way" and be able to relax and enjoy life to a degree I never dreamed possible."

Hopefully, I will get this Newsletter finished in a few more days.  I will announce it on the New page as usual - and as long as it is within a few days I will hold off on sending out my Update announcements until it is finished.  Whenever it is finished, I will activate a link to it here as soon as it is available on line: 
January 14th:  It turned into a two parter - Go to Newsletter 1 for January 2002
Graphic of two hearts with an arrow through them - signifying both Love and heartbreak.
Go to Update for April 2002
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Codependence: The Dance of Wounded Souls by Robert Burney is copyright 1995.  Material on Joy2MeU web site (except where otherwise noted) is copyright 1996 thru 2009 by Robert Burney  PO Box 235401 Encinitas CA 92023.