How Do You Wake Up?

waking up cranky

Sometimes we are rudely awakened.  I had a spiritual teacher once who told me that the way people wake up from a deep sleep is generally the way they react in life.  She said that people who wake up angry are really pissed off, and people who wake up so sleepy they can barely awaken go through life half asleep or unconscious. Others who have a sunny disposition wake up happily.  Some people even wake up quickly and get to task, and some are so busy doing that they’re always sleepwalking.  Through the years I’ve remembered this and pondered it.  I don’t know if I believe it’s a hard and fast rule, and I certainly don’t believe that people never change, but there is some seed of truth to it that keeps bringing it back to consciousness.

In the past few days I’ve been watching all of the beautiful and ugly ways in which people awaken to tragedy.  For the most part, we are fortunate in the west for the ways in which we thrive, the privilege of creature comforts and enough to eat.  Wars don’t generally happen here in our yards.  At least not the obvious types of war.

There are other wars we engage in, though.  Another spiritual teacher I had for ten years had travelled extensively and done relief work in war-torn countries. In one place she was trying to teach and feed young children in a poverty-stricken preschool while they were  bombed daily.  She had lived through more than I could imagine.  I expressed to her how fortunate we were here and how I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t seem to get my act together in such seemingly privileged conditions.

I will never forget what she told me.  She said that the suffering in other countries was tangible, palpable, able to be seen with the eyes.  In the west, she said, she had never seen people this tormented mentally.  The suffering was hidden, and people can’t help what they cannot see. For her, the mental suffering of the people in the west was just as terrible as anything she had witnessed anywhere else.  The aspect of it that she felt was worse was that it was,  as she put it, a deep and invisible suffering that left a terrible void of spiritual despair.

This made such a deep impression on me that I have devoted my life to alleviating this kind of suffering.  Sometimes, I catch people in mid-suffering mode, and I make them laugh so hard that they don’t notice me injecting them with heavy doses of compassion and love. I do my best to teach people to love themselves, and I show them new places where they can perch mentally in order to see their own magnificence.  Other times I tiptoe around sleeping folks so as not to wake them up, because awakening them would surely bring on a worse suffering.  There are times when sleeping is, after all, better medicine.

In times like these, I just pour love straight onto wounds.  I don’t need to wake anyone because they’ve all heard the alarm, and I stand here praying while the universe reorganizes everything in a big scary blender of total chaos.  I pray for us to remember that deep inside we are all love no matter what the appearances will have us believe. I pray mostly for a world of compassion and peace, and that those waking up angry, confused, hurt, tortured, or insane will be held and rocked in such a safe blanket of love that their suffering melts completely and is replaced with wholeness and joy.  You may be thinking right now that I’m dreaming because this is a fantasy, but I’m actually wide awake and just plain stubborn. I refuse to hold any other vision than a world of peace and love.

~Oceana LeBlanc is a women’s empowerment coach, tantric yogini, and shaman.

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12 Responses to “How Do You Wake Up?”

  1. Nicki Sanders, MSW Says:

    “The suffering was hidden, and people can’t help what they cannot see.” is a very powerful statement. I will remember that!


  2. Oceana Says:

    Yes, indeed. Thank you for reading and commenting, Nicki.


  3. drmelissabrown Says:

    Oceana, this is just beautiful. I love your words, your vision and the whole concept of how you awake from sleep as a metaphor for how you react to life. Beautiful…..thank you..


  4. Oceana Says:

    So glad you enjoyed reading, Melissa.


  5. Amy Says:

    Oceana, there’s so much truth in this post and you say it in such a beautiful way. I love the metaphor of how a person awakes being indicative of what kind of nature he has.


  6. Oceana Says:

    Thank you, Amy! Metaphors are great, aren’t they?! Thank you for the kinds words.


  7. Sheri Conaway Says:

    Wow! Great post, and so in tune with my thoughts today! I will, after this, start paying more attention to how I wake up (albeit late, these days!)


  8. Oceana Says:

    Thanks, Sheri! Glad to be riding the same thought waves…


  9. body Says:


    […]How Do You Wake Up? | Goddess Oceana's Gold[…]…


  10. Deborah Miles Says:

    Good to know you are exactly the way you are. Please never change. Love you!


  11. Oceana Says:

    You are such a beautiful and generous soul, Deborah! Thank you. It’s good to know that you are exactly the way you are as well, exquisite woman. Much love to you.


  12. Deborah Miles Says:

    There you go again, being awesome. Thank you!


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