- Bob Ginsberg
How to Create Your Safe Place
To a percentage of the population the term “playing it safe” is not in their vocabulary. They view life as a complete adventure and believe in pushing the limit in every activity in which they partake. If their actions should result in physical or emotional harm, so be it, as the risk is always worth taking when weighed against the potential benefit. The reward might be material in nature, such as financial gain or physical enhancement. Or, it might be an emotional rush that frees one from the mundane rituals so common to daily life. One would think that playing it safe would not apply to spiritual endeavors, but here is where most people tend to think inside the box.
I first became aware of this in my role as a facilitator of an afterlife discussion group, a small gathering where people can learn about evidence of a non-physical realm and discuss personal experiences. As a general rule, newcomers to the group spend the first few meetings mostly listening to others, with little or no participation on their part. However, once it is clear that the members of the group are of like mind and certainly not likely to judge others, I am amazed at the experiences that they begin to share. It pains me to realize that these people felt compelled to hide extraordinary experiences from their own families and friends for fear of being labeled. I ponder how we can bring the safe place environment out of the closet and into the world at large.
We are sometimes victims of our own education, culture, religious teachings, media influences, and so-called professionals that influence our beliefs. Whether it is the clothes we wear, the medicines we ingest, the dogma we follow, or the personalities we are told we should emulate, most of us live in constant fear of not fitting in to what we are told is acceptable or desirable. Even if something else inside may tell us to do otherwise, we tend to take the path of least resistance.
I believe that it is important to be able to distinguish between our internal and external safe places. Internal havens are based upon intuition and knowing, and have nothing to do with external physical influences. For example, your friend may encourage you to attend a party that they assure you will be wonderful, but your gut tells you otherwise. Or perhaps your family member cautions you not to associate with a particular person because he/she does not conform to acceptable religious beliefs, but you know in your heart that this is a good person. Many times instinct will trump accepted norms.
External safe havens can sometimes be a pathway to internal knowing. One might go to a discussion group not knowing what to expect, but hoping for the best. Once the gathering is determined to be safe, the participant becomes open and begins to trust the inner knowledge that they previously questioned. For example, they may have experienced psychic or after death communication previously, but constantly questioned whether or not it was real or a figment of their imagination. However, once attending the group and learning that there are mountains of scientific and anecdotal evidence that suggests these experiences are indeed real, a whole new world opens up.
However, sometimes external safe havens are not what they appear to be. We all know that we live in a world where many with ulterior motives take advantage of those who are vulnerable to manipulation. How many times have you visited a friend, gone to an event or meeting, or met with a professional and found that what you experienced was the total opposite of what you expected? Many with devious motives know that creating the illusion of safety and security will help them to accomplish their goals. A perfect example of this can be taken from the world of mediumship. There are unfortunately many fraudulent practitioners that infiltrate the legitimate mediums and prey on the bereaved, making a great deal of money in the process. The illusion of safety and comfort is created, along with the promise of other-worldly connections, and the bereaved person is quickly separated from their money.
It is easy to counsel people to let go of their physical influences and put more reliance on non-physical input. However, recognizing that we must still exist in the physical realm, it is easier said than done. It can only be accomplished by taking baby steps that move us in the right direction. Those who are bereaved can certainly relate. Those who grieve are constantly striving to find little internal safe places that can provide some respite from their suffering. This could be a simple contemplation of a wonderful time they had with their loved one, or a reflection upon a personal experience where they communicated with their loved one through a dream or sign, or recapping all of the evidence that they learned about survival after physical death. Personally, I still maintain the same internal safe place. Every time that I feel myself succumbing to grief I simply reflect upon all of the evidence that I have learned over the years about near death experiences, deathbed visions, mediumship, reincarnation, after death communication and a host of other phenomena that provide my personal proof that my loved one still survives. This knowledge can no longer be shaken by outside influences as this safe place has become part of my inner knowing.
So how can more of us create inner safe places? The first step is to acknowledge our non-physical perceptions and share them with others. When many people begin speaking about subjects that challenge mainstream thinking, the barriers that separate the physical and non-physical realms begin to thin. The unacceptable becomes acceptable as we become aware that things are not always what they seem, or as we were taught. I am not suggesting that we abandon all that we have learned from very learned people. This knowledge has been helpful to many people as they form various safe zones based upon the information. Many find comfort in knowing that medical science will be able to help them if they get sick. Others find comfort in the rituals offered by their faiths. Some look upon material possessions and financial security as their most important safe zone, as this gives them acceptance and lessens their worries.
However, what I am suggesting is that sometimes these external safe places are an illusion. Our inner selves often know differently, and an internal struggle takes place that can manifest in emotional and physical distress. I believe that today, more than ever before, we rely less on the internal mechanisms with which we were designed, and more on the external influences that define who we think we should be. One needs only to look around them to see why. We live in a world of instant information and sit before screens of various types throughout the day. It is as though our whole world is dictated by the information that comes through on our computers, smart phones and devices, and TVs. As we become more computer-like the need for independent thought and paying attention to our inner knowledge continues to wane. The notion that we are our brains becomes fact and the notion that we have minds (consciousness or soul if you prefer) that can extend beyond the brain becomes fantasy. In essence, we have strayed so far from our original source that we face ultimate extinction if things do not change.
We must stop trying live up to the expectations of others and begin discovering our true essence. We all originally came from a safe place, a place that has slowly been siphoned away. Our interconnectedness needs to acknowledged and once again embraced. Then, and only then, will we come to the realization that love and compassion are inherent to us all, and the need for all safe places will be forever gone.