Day 4 : Wholeness
“There is an acute quality of aliveness in being psychologically whole. You become ‘the wise fool of tough love’!” – Nilima Bhat
The third element of Shakti Leadership is Wholeness.
Presence and Shakti allow us to build the next three elements needed by a conscious leader.
By wholeness, we mean the capacity to balance, integrate, and unite all the divided and fragmented parts of oneself. It is the only state from which we can access our full power.
In short, we have to reclaim our lost halves to become a whole person. We have to heal the parent-child and masculine-feminine split inside our psyche. As we learn to wisely self-parent and keep alive our playful inner child; and express both our inner feminine and inner masculine natures in a creative, self-sustaining dance within, we achieve a “holy family reunion” and come into our whole, healthy, individuated self. This is a happy state where, our inner man-woman union gives us the ability to exercise “tough-love’ and our parent-child integration makes us a “wise-fool.”
As a woman, becoming psychologically whole means becoming your own mother and your own beloved. For a man, becoming your own father and your own lover.
‘Leadership maturity’, a much desired quality in leaders today, comes from such a psychological ‘coming of age’ as a person. Taking full responsibility for your self-care, self-worth and eventually, self-realization as you reunite with your enlightened higher-self.
Today, consider your Wholeness: your many ‘selves’ and possible lost-halves:
- When do you feel whole? How do you show-up or behave when you are fragmented?
- Do you feel connected to your higher self?
- Do you feel you have a good balance of feminine and masculine traits?
- Are you accepting of your undeveloped or ‘shadow self’ in a healthy way or do you deny having it?
- Are you willing to let go of outdated stories and versions of yourself to become whole?
- Can you meet the needs of your inner child in a legitimate way?
Do you have a symbol of integration or wholeness that inspires you?
(Excerpted from Shakti Leadership)
The Holy Grail of the quest for wholeness in many mythologies is the inner wedding, which can be understood as a dance of love and power within ourselves. Building on the yin-yang symbol, it depicts the sacred union of the “mindful” woman and the “heartful” man, or “woman of wisdom and man of heart.”*
In other words, our own inner masculinity achieves mature wholeness by integrating the complementary yin qualities within; equally our inner femininity matures into wholeness by integrating the complementary yang qualities within.
The journey to the inner wedding is the work of a lifetime. It takes a significant amount of inner work to discover your complementary other half, to find and meet that beloved and achieve a sacred union. It is about finding your masculine strength and wisdom – the Shiva – as well as awakening the Shakti – the feminine, emotional nature that vitalizes and nourishes deeply from within. In this way, both men and women become the Ardhanarishwar, a Divine archetype with traits that are simultaneously feminine and masculine; they are each whole, in their own individual way.
Commit today to your wholeness!
Travel gently into this terrain of becoming whole. Share your reflections as an inspiration to others.
Optional exercise: Pranayam for Wholeness
This short but potent breath-work exercise from the Cellular Healing Meditation I have developed, can add to your wholeness practice. Find a quiet space and time and work with this mantra-breath meditation, to unify the body and mind.
Co-author – Shakti Leadership
*Maureen Murdock, The Heroine’s Journey (Boston: Shambhala Publications, 1990), 161.