Archive for Depression

Honouring The Divine Masculine

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2018 by tivaniam

There’s an unspoken truth we’ve turned a blind eye to. Which I’m not prepared to remain quiet about any longer. I’ve personally witnessed the destruction this lie has amassed and I’ve seen many spirits break as a result.

The lie I refer to is the way in which we’ve been taught to regard men and the standard in which we’ve upheld them. By “we” I mean society at large. I am not a feminist or fascist in any way or form. My advocacy has always been about truth, authenticity and conscious living. My personal belief is that men and women form part of the same energetic frequency with both masculine and feminine energies. But we’ve been taught to differentiate and prescribe certain roles and responsibilities on to men, exacerbated by antiquated stories of men saving damsels in distress.

We’ve all bought into the bullshit, and hyped it further with sayings like “cowboys don’t cry”. We’ve placed the responsibility of providing financially squarely on the shoulders of men. We defined success for them as a way to measure up. We’ve defined the meaning of a “real man” according to a carefully crafted script. We’ve negated their emotional wellbeing and suppressed their innate ability to nurture or comfort because it wasn’t the “manly” thing to do. We’ve given them the responsibility of taking care of our emotional wellbeing and blamed them for our unhappiness. We’ve used religion or posterity, loyalty and obligation as control mechanisms to get them to conform. We’ve scoffed at their desire to be vulnerable because boys don’t cry. And “real men” don’t behave like sissies. And what we’ve done is create very angry and very sad men who feel isolated, scared and depressed. But they’d rather kill themselves than ever admit their truth. And so they do. The recent spate of suicides by men bears testament.

So what are we doing here and why are we doing it?

The simple answer is conditioning.

As an Indian woman I’ve seen many men aspire to become the vision that was set out for them by their parents. Often this vision had absolutely nothing to do with who they truly were, but they executed that vision to satisfy their parents. They negated their truths out of duty and obligation. I’ve also been a witness to men who wanted to express their pain and yet had to suppress it, which suppression translates into anger.

It’s time we create a new context. There is no men versus women here. It’s men AND women working together towards a collective consciousness. That is the only time we can move forward as a species. These gender specific roles are an illusion. We are all exactly the same. Honouring the divine masculine means honouring parts of ourselves as women. As a collective. There’s no differentiation. There are NO templates to follow that govern how men ought to be.

Beloved masculine, today I invite you to hold a mirror up and take a stark look at yourself. Begin to embrace the real truth and not the bullshit you’ve been fed about how you’re supposed to be. Recognise the courage it takes to be vulnerable and break down those barriers to love. Speak and own your truth. Know that your power is inherent and doesn’t need to be wielded forcefully. Understand that you don’t need to win approval from anyone. Understand that love is not conditional upon what you can provide or who you need to impress. Understand that you have the power to create your own reality. Own the fact that you CAN choose yourself and your happiness. Most importantly, break down the stereotypes and free yourself. It’s okay to exhale.

I honour the divine in You, as part of Me.

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On Judgment 

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 22, 2017 by tivaniam

I’ve been hearing recently about people who speak about the so-called ‘contradictory’ life I lead. Where I profess one thing, and presumably live another. I’ve also been hearing criticism around the way I look with statements like “I am ten times prettier than her”; or statements like “I am decent, she is twice divorced with two kids from two different fathers”. Now, anyone who truly knows me would know that I care a toss about commentary like these because I am aware enough to know that, living in the public eye, sharing my life in all its hideousness and glory makes me susceptible to judgment and criticism all the time. I have come to understand that most often; this judgment is passed by people who sit on the wayside of their lives, with self-righteous indignation, pointing fingers instead of taking a cold, hard look internally. (Sounds harsh but believe me, I am using artistic licence very minimally here).

But this is what bothered me slightly about these recent judgments: they were from women. I am not about bashing another woman. I don’t need to see another woman beaten down in order to feel better about myself. And I guess this is where awareness comes in. And this post is to that end, to try and create a level of awareness for why judgment should never be passed if you are someone who has little insight into who YOU truly are.

I’ve spent many years learning about who I am. I have spent years doing the very hard work to get to a level of understanding about why I’ve made certain decisions in my life. Being a woman isn’t binary. It’s not an easy feat. I’ve stumbled in the dark more times than I can count, breaking my heart and back in an effort to be everything this world required of me. For years, I tried to be the so-called epitome of a ‘decent Indian woman’ by society’s definition and forced myself to be in a marriage that didn’t serve the beat of my own heart. I smiled externally and remained silent, while my insides were screaming and my soul was dying. It took an enormous amount of courage, strength, tenacity and bravery to forge ahead and leave my second marriage because I knew I wanted and deserved more. The flaming spirit that is truly me was literally dying to emerge. And that was a good enough reason to leave. Facing death is sobering. It puts everything into perspective and that is why I have made it my mission in life to always and forever put my happiness first. Nothing else is more important than being happy and at peace.

I have paid my dues and earned the right to put my middle finger up high. I’ve worked myself to the bone to own the bad-ass that I’ve become. I never relied on anyone else to save me; I had to fight until my skin was bare to get to this point. Which is why I am extremely proud to own and embrace every facet of my past experiences: from the two divorces, to the failed relationships to having two kids with two different fathers. I have walked through fire to get to be who I am now and I am unapologetic about it. The reason I make reference to this here, is simply to reveal that not everyone knows my story, so why do people feel like they get a narrative regarding my choices?

Let’s cut to the chase here. This kind of judgment from women to women is a nascent act of violence done in the most sinister and divisive way. It keeps us from stepping into the power we own as women. It also unfairly places the blame on men for sexist behaviour, when women are actually the culprits. Why does speaking about the way I look matter when it’s far more important to focus on what I am looking AT?

It may appear contradictory, if my choices are scrutinised. But, being true means owning MY TRUTH. It doesn’t have to be accepted or approved by anyone else. If it’s true for me, if my intention is only about love and peace and not set to hurt another, then I am not a contradiction, I am still fully in my authentic power. This truth of mine may be terribly inconvenient for others but again, it’s only ever right for me.

Judgment is easy. It’s very easy to point fingers, apportion blame, use slandering words like “whore” or “slut” or “bitch” liberally. It’s easy to criticise a path you’ve not taken, or choices you’ve not made out of fear because then it is far simpler to remain a victim of circumstance. For those of us actually doing the work, we don’t need the judgment. You can turn that mirror inwards, you may not like what you see. 

Trusting the Magic

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on March 30, 2016 by tivaniam

I’ve been having conversations recently that reminded me of my own a-ha moments and my personal journey with overcoming fear that once debilitated me. I have learnt through my own experience that courage should be recognised at the heart of the vulnerable. In a world that advocates living a life of pretence, I bow down to those who keep their hearts open and live and speak their truth.

Some of the most devastating events in our life put us in direct alignment with our destiny. We have to learn how to move past the lessons in order to see our path. This can only emanate from possessing a brutal level of honesty. We need to combat enough fear within ourselves to be able to live the honesty of our own truth – no matter how dark or bright. This admission was always hard for me. I attached myself to the victim mentality and continuously attracted negativity in my life that perpetuated that theory. I often felt like one step forward ended in ten steps backwards – continuous self-sabotaging behaviour. It was only until I realised that my actions reflected who I was and my life was a product of my own mind-set that things started to change.

I learnt how to show kindness to unkind people. I forgave people who didn’t ask for forgiveness. I love and continue to love unconditionally. It is never too late to create a new context and set the tone for amazing things to manifest.

We have to simply trust the magic of new beginnings and know that everything happens for our greatest good.

Being Present

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on October 31, 2014 by tivaniam

Most of us, if we’re really lucky, get to experience a profound revelation after a traumatic or otherwise difficult life experience. We do the hard work to help us recover and own our mistakes and move forward. Equipped with useful information and with the best intentions of participating fully, passionately and harmoniously with the world, we enter into a new realm of spiritual existence.

We all know that there is no meritocracy in this world and bad things do happen to good people. So when shit happens, as it inevitably does, all of the good intentions and useful knowledge do little to circumvent the spiral into chaos within our mind.

It may be difficult to remain positive when life kicks you in the ass and your plans get derailed, but, remaining positive is a choice – something I personally have to condition my mind and heart into believing, every moment of every day.

These are the tools that work for me, which I share with you.

Always believe that the view from the factory is exactly the same as the view from the ivory tower.

In other words, believe that you already possess every single thing you need. And you will want for nothing.

Support comes in many forms. Wake up and pay attention.

I had my heart broken by a person that I thought was my best friend. So believe me, trusting people is not easy. But if you pay attention, you do see that people actually do reveal themselves to you from the beginning, but as fallible humans, we see what we want to see. I have learnt though, that there are genuinely kind and supportive people in this world who are selfless. But, you get what you give. Treat people with contempt and anger, and that is what you will get in return. Demonstrate love in every way – irrespective of how it is received – and you always get back love in return. I have learnt this lesson several times over, and I am a believer of it completely. I have received support in different ways, giving me exactly what I needed to help me cope with whatever situation I found myself in.

Breathe.

Sounds simplistic, but it’s actually harder than it sounds. Too often our minds are consumed with worry, pressure, stress and ‘doing’ that we forget how to be still. I have discovered the therapeutic benefits of removing myself from life for a few moments each day and finding a secluded spot to shut my eyes and breathe. One minute is all you need. The oxygen that reaches your brain has the most profound effect on your frame of mind.

Dance

I used to be the eternal wallflower. Too stiff to move freely, always consumed with what people would think or say about me to be free enough to dance. I have recently been reminded that life is not an episode of “SA’s Got Talent”. I don’t need to be good at it to be able to know intrinsically, how to move. If you want to test this theory, listen to “Can you feel it” by the Jackson Five and see what happens to your body instinctively. Be free to move as you did when you were a child. The benefits of this can’t even be verbalised. It’s a feeling where words do no justice.

Whatever you focus on, you create more of. Live a life of gratitude and abundance would surely follow.

 

 

 

On Suicide and Depression

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , on August 20, 2014 by tivaniam

Shepard Smith, Fox News’ anchor, made an ignorant remark when covering Robin Williams’ recent death, calling Williams’ a “coward” for committing suicide.

What struck me was the fact that, despite officially apologising for what he dubbed “an innocent comment”, Smith has caused a stir on social media platforms – with people being both in agreement of and opposed to his outrageous remark.

Everyone seems to have jumped on the bandwagon giving their comments and opinions about suicide and debating the merits of depression. But, unless you have been there, I don’t think any academic or empathetic comments do justice.

Having recently been at the throes of despair, being unashamedly candid about my own struggle with depression, I contemplated suicide more than once. What the average person needs to understand is that this is a disease that one cannot “snap out of”. Good intentions aside, the advice I was given, created more of an annoyance and made me feel worse about myself. Comments like “think about your children”, “you have so much to be grateful for”, “you need to pull yourself together”…etc etc etc…do nothing for someone who considers it a task to get out of bed every morning. Each person’s pain threshold differs and what can be dramatic for me, may not be for another as pain is relative.

Whatever the cause, the point is, depression is a disease and should be treated as such. A reasonable amount of respect should be afforded to someone suffering from depression because in most cases, one doesn’t “choose” to simply be depressed.

A culmination of several traumatic life experiences removed all hope from Robin Williams. With the onset of early Parkinson’s disease, life as he knew it, would never be the same. He chose to end his life for whatever reason and there should not be any judgements made or comments that suggest that his soul would now serve it’s time in hell.

Life on earth is hell. Financial trouble, ill-health, relationships failing, death of a loved one, being unemployed, abused, victimised or having a low sense of self-worth are palpable reasons for people to spiral into a dark abyss. Whether suicide is justified or not – it’s a subject that should never warrant judgment.  

Personally, had divine intervention not come to me in the form of The SOAR Institute, I too, would have probably been dead. I have had the insight and experience to know that nothing in life is insurmountable – but again, this knowledge came from having walked that painful path.

Life is hard enough – be kind to each other. Reach out to someone who you think may be hurting. Be authentic with the kindness and concern and know that with life being so unpredictable, you can never tell when your time of need will come, so hopefully your kindness comes back tenfold.

Pay it forward.

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