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9.4. Enough, enough now

So, where is Alma today? What is she doing, and how is she doing?

She stays indoors in a social security apartment in Oslo east. She spends several months a year alone in a family cabin in the mountains. She rejects all contact.

I choose to ignore all the difficulties.

It's over anyway.

Every day brings new opportunities.

Healing requires that all aspects of you must be integrated. You must love all aspects of yourself, especially the child in you – the child that was traumatised and suffers and is insecure because of this, even in adulthood.

This inner child is afraid and does not dare to feel emotions.

The solution is, banally enough, to become this child again – but now as an adult. Understand yourself, comfort yourself, love yourself.

Being like a child means putting aside the defence mechanisms, the analytical explanations and all the confusion you create to protect yourself from what hurts.

To me, with my injury, this need is obvious.

The solution is to dare to live, come alive again, and become like a child.

For Alma, it is different as I experience it.

She was already like that when I met her.

She lives the way I am now learning to live.

And how should I describe this concretely?

I have to borrow a little from those who know more than me and have again brought out a video clip with Teal Swan, where she explains the importance of becoming like a child again. You can read her own transcript, but it's a bit lengthy, so here is a slightly abridged and edited version:
  1. Spend time around children and join their world
    Sit on a bench and watch children playing on a playground. Spend time, experience with them, feel free to meditate while sitting there. If it comes naturally, you can talk to them, play with them. Remember that you are entering their world, not the other way around. Your goal is to see the world as they do, play as they do. Let them rule.

  2. Be in the present moment
    Take in sounds, smells, tastes, your emotions, and the wonder of what something looks like. Direct your attention to what is actually happening and is – nothing else.

  3. Play
    We all have a natural talent, an instinctive drive and joy to play. As adults, we neglect these impulses, but they are there. Adults also need to play.

    Remember that the purpose of play is to have fun, to feel good, not to achieve anything. The term «purpose of play» is an adult's way of viewing it. Children are not like that. Happiness is not a goal, an outcome. Having fun through play is an end in itself and impossible if you introduce something external.

    There is no right or wrong when it comes to playing. You can play poker or volleyball, take a bath, go out in the pouring rain without an umbrella or do something spontaneous, like climbing a tree or seeing if you can hit something with the rock you want to kick. The only «requirement» is that it's fun!

    You probably need to practice to find again and act on your impulse to play. Discovering it is fun in itself. Maybe sometimes it's enough to giggle to yourself about the wild things you start to want to do.

    Frank Zappa puts it this way:

    «What happened to all the fun in the world?»

    And then he ventured into «Bobby Brown», a crazy, playful parody of serious, inept America. It became his biggest hit. Zappa played until he dropped.

    For those of us who have suppressed our emotions all our lives but are perhaps quite good at playing, it is instead about practising and recognising the impulse to feel – and then being brave enough to act on it.

  4. Try new things
    Children are constantly experiencing new things. Take part in this intoxicating experience. You can do this by presenting something you already know well and then observe how the child relates to it. Take part in the wonder, see things with a child's eyes.

    Trying something new does not have to be about something new but seeing things as they are, without prejudices and prior knowledge. Also, experience old things as if it was the first time, or do something actually new to you.

    It doesn't matter what it is; just do it. Look at your breakfast. Pretend you arrived on Earth from an alien planet five minutes ago, and your granola is the first thing you encounter.


    This is the attraction and magic of travelling and seeing new cultures, places, and ways. The opposite is to stop growing, die.

  5. Be curious
    You must be active. If you are bored, take a closer look at things, and forget the idea that you already know what something is. Don't judge; learn! Ask questions; children ask all the time. Go into other people's explanations and experiences. Step into their world for a moment because we all live in separate worlds. They are very different, much more than you think.

    Even if we travel or seek out other people and environments, we take our perception of reality with us. We carry our inner, locked-down world on our backs like a heavy, gnawing rucksack. We only feel the weight of the bag. Take it off.

    Read something you would otherwise never read. Talk to someone you would otherwise avoid. Put things together in new ways. Pick something apart. Smell, taste, touch, feel. Try it!

  6. Be radically honest
    Children are honest to such an extent that we adults are often embarrassed. Forget being strategic. Forget appearing in the best possible light, sweeping under the carpet, pleasing others, pretending. Be direct and authentic. It doesn't mean that you should be simple, but often it means just that because we adults complicate everything.

    Some of us are not «simple». We are so damaged that we are genuinely complicated. Then this is what needs to go out and forward. It took me sixty years to get there.

    Until now, I have played down my complexity in an attempt to make myself similar to others, scale myself down, and earn their acceptance and respect. Their love.

    That's pretty bad, isn't it?

    We deny ourselves to receive love when it is the opposite that would give us what we need; that others see and love us as who we actually are.

    What if you can't make it?

    Write a diary and tell yourself what you did and should have done instead.

  7. Let other people help you
    First, you need to know what you need. Really need. We are not talking here about assistance in hanging up pictures but about the deeper human needs. Then you have to feel them, and adults don't always allow themselves to do that because it can be painful, and you are afraid of exposing yourself and being rejected.

    Did I mention I'm male?

    Guess what we are taught to do.

    Children are in a position where they have to receive help, and they often express their needs without a filter, often with howls and screams. Yes, they must learn to fend for themselves, but at the same time, we all too often take away from them the ability and the right to ask for help. It was worse before, I hope, but I'm not sure.

    People who can accept help go further, not surprisingly.

  8. Do as children do
    You begin to see what children do, which you yourself have forgotten. Not everything has value to you, but some things greatly value you. You might not feel like stepping around in puddles (although that's fun) or eating snow with sand in it. But you might like to go up to other people and ask, «Shall we play?» You could well need to open your senses and see things «as they are».

    You could well imagine building sand castles without thinking that your clothes need to be cleaned. Or talk directly about your emotions, seek comfort, pick things apart, laugh out loud, show your doubts - and so on.

What do we call all this?

I think it's called living.

Alma said I might just need to get back to life.

I'm sure she knows what she's talking about.

No, I know that she knows – because that's how I knew her.

That is what I saw and loved.

I accept the advice.

In the video, Teal finally comes with a small warning and a thought that opens up more significant perspectives.

The warning is that no matter how you choose to be like a child again, you must do it the child's way. With the child's quality, emulate their behaviour to experience the way they do, experience their qualia.

Before they start «learning», children do not do things with a purpose. Adults can intellectualise and operationalise even the emulation of children.

That is how we adults are; so much have we forgotten, so blind are we, to such an extent have we lost ourselves.

Turn around.

And here comes Teal's second insight.

When you «turn around» and look back on who you once were and really are, you look towards your origin.

The «inner child» is your «higher self».

People who awaken spiritually regain their childlike qualities. The more enlightened you become, the more you will become like a child again, but this time a wise and knowledgeable child.


Now I'm going to leave the story of Alma.

In my life, I never leave her; she is in me forever.

I owe her an incredible amount, despite all the pain she – unintentionally – has inflicted on me and others.

She was the seed and the resistance I needed in my life to grow and wake up.

Twice with thirty years in between, it happened.

Without this story about her and her contribution, it would be impossible to understand where the rest of the book comes from.

Such was my awakening.

Now that the book is available, my invitation to Alma to have a coffee still stands.

It's my dream.

We all have our dreams, okay?

Now you shall hear what I have learned about the essential questions.

I will share what has been «downloaded» to me.