Did you know that there is a black hole at the center of our Milky Way galaxy? For those of you who don’t know, the Milky Way Galaxy is our home in the universe and our mother galaxy for which our Solar System is a child of. You can look at the Milky Way Galaxy as being our great grandparent, our Sun the grandparent and the Earth as our mother. The theory is that the Milky Way Galaxy was born from this intense and immensely large black hole. But what does this mean to us little humans running around on planet earth? Why would I, a behavioral therapist, be writing a scientific article about a black hole? The reason is very simple: As Above…So Below. The nature of the universe is reflected in human behavior.
Stretching this black hole analogy a bit further, we were born from darkness, but even more importantly, we were born out of mystery, reflective of the unknown that is a black hole, a powerful swirling center of unimaginable power and strength. An entity, so large, dark and mysterious our fear of it has been warranted; that is, until now. A black hole is not to be feared, it should be celebrated as the giving of life that it has brought to us.
Dark and unfamiliar, these characteristics mirror the pain of human suffering and the agony we connect to the traumatic experiences we endure. So many of my patients are fearful of connecting to that past pain, stuffing it down, deep into the heart inside a cold dark room so they can close the door and lock it up in the hope of forgetting about it. But in doing so they rob themselves of the ability to see the lights, the fire and the beauty that surrounds them. They rob themselves of the ability to see something greater than themselves, often developing an emotional disconnection with the people that mean the most to them, to the beauty that is life, purpose and passion.
“What will happen to me if I begin uncovering trauma?” Is what they so often ask.
My answer is always the same, “We must go through the darkness to get to the light.”
Locking up such a strong emotional response out of fear can only lead to that same fear manifesting in everyday life. Something that is alive will always find its way out. Like the mystery and fear of the black hole, we fear the unknown of confronting our trauma. We can’t see past the fear to the light of the glorious Milky Way.
This denial develops into a swirling chaos that becomes everyday life, much like the black hole’s gravitational force crushing everything within its event horizon. When we deny the pain from our past, life tumbles out of control. But it is our acceptance to dive into the darkness that makes all the difference, freeing ourselves from the ties that have bound us into that dark and tiny locked room.
For the longest time, I was bound inside that dark room, a child alone in fear and in pain and abandoned. I’d thought over the years that my trauma had no residual effect, denying the anger that was inside my heart and desperately clinging to other people, illicit substances and immoral acts as a defense mechanism to the pain I refused to face. In turn, easily taken advantage of by people I’d thought were friends. My emotional state had been in ruins, chaos and disorder as I grappled and clawed to make sense out of why I kept getting slapped in the face.
One day, I had gone to a full moon beach meditation, when I sat down the facilitator took one look at me and asked, “What are you holding onto that is causing all your suffering and anger?” He said he could sense my energy, my vibrations of fear and anger.
In that moment I remembered the pain, the darkness, and that little boy so petrified and hurt and crying uncontrollably, wanting to be consoled and protected, and to not be forgotten. My eyes filled with tears (not something a big guy like me allowed to happen before that moment; the way I was raised, men don’t cry), and I gave in to the pain, the hurt and the shame. That same day I stopped ignoring the darkness, however painful it was to go through, to admit to and to suffer through, and started paying attention to the light that was all around me, the angels whom I call my children and my wife, who give me strength and wisdom, purpose and resolve.
My trauma was my black hole, steeped in darkness and fear, but it was only by diving into that black hole of pain that the fear subsided and the rest of the light in the universe opened, understanding that all is possible when your heart is not kept in the dark. That there is no fear once you bring the darkness into the light.
Like the nature of the universe, human beings are subjected to go through the same. Life can be painful but there is always the light reflected in the eyes and hearts of those you love and who love you. Much like the dark and mystery of the black hole brought life to our galaxy, embracing our pain brings us a renewed sense of life. This is the nature of our universe and the nature of human existence.
As above…so below! As we are connected to each other, connected to nature and the life that exists on this planet, so are we connected with the universe, portraying all its mysteries, wonders, and beauties within our hearts. Find your light within the darkness and manifest yourself in a place of wonder and amazement in everything you do, and you will find a renewed sense of passion and purpose!
~ P.D. Alleva
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