Huginn & Muninn (thought & memory) – We are so much more than we ‘think’!…

This is the first painting finished in the Huginn & Muninn series taken from my journeys and exploration of my initiatory experience during and after a sustaining a severe concussion.

4+ months ago I passed out and managed to hit my head twice (as you do) before hitting the floor where I remained completely unconscious for 10 mins. I was in and out of hospital several times and confined to bed rest for 6 weeks. I was unable to function at even 10% of my usual capacity and relapsed whenever I tried to push through my post concussion symptoms and ‘get back to normal’.

For those of you fortunate enough to not have experienced a concussion, it is not something I would recommend! I imagine that everyone’s experience varies, for me it was like being completely shut down & ejected from my body, re-wired and re-booted. Part of my re-boot is that all my senses have been dialed up to a 9+! Which is a bit of a double edged sword – my experience of everything is so much more deeper, richer & intense, but on the flip side this can very quickly become overwhelming. I am glad to say I have now found ways to manage, integrate and to utilise this new sensory dashboard upgrade.

I have approached this from the very start as an initiatory experience from the more extreme end of the spectrum (there are other ways to facilitate initiatory experiences, but apparently not in my case this time!). I have certainly experienced a death, with many parts of the collective labelled ‘me’ being shed and for which I have now grieved and honoured. But as we know, with death comes new life and I have been welcoming, embracing and surrendering to the new path that now lays ahead of me. In all my mapping of this experience I have come to the conclusion that my concussion woke me up! It has woken me up to an even deeper experience of this world, of what ‘I’ truly am and my calling in this life.

For the first 6+ weeks of my recovery, while on bed rest, I had some extremely profound experiences of which I am only just now beginning to get a handle on and claim the gifts of.

I spent allot of my days recovering without thoughts, very literally no thoughts whatsoever! ‘I’ had disappeared… but there was still ‘something’ there. There was no ability to string a sequence of thoughts together even if It was attempted. There was a total and all encompassing feeling of being held in this vast spaciousness, in which there was just an ongoing witnessing of the world without any dialogue or thought commentary.

These experiences eventually led me to the question:

That if we are not our thoughts and memories….then who? and more importantly what are we?

Because I can tell you from my experience we are ‘something’, but it is not the ‘me’ or ‘I’ what we normally identify with and think we are…if that makes any ounce of sense?!

Very slowly over the weeks, a sense of a ‘me’ began to emerge in very brief glimpses at first from what I can only describe as this spaciousness. Looking back now, it was as if I was living through a creation myth from the very beginnings, with me slowly forming and coalescing from this vast formless space. It was as if I had been obliterated into nothingness and was now forming a new, molecule by molecule. I had for all intents and purposes experienced my own personal ragnarök: the rending apart and total obliteration of my psyche’s form. The experience has profoundly changed me, if ‘me’ is even the right way of putting it. I have the memories and recollection of the thought processes of my life before the concussion event, but somehow they are like a distant dream from another’s life.

My perceptual filters are totally different, my thought processes are also changed and all the while I have this strong sense of this spaciousness remaining in the background. I feel very different about quite a few things, all of these very positive, which are all filtering through into my actions and behavior in my every day life. I am experiencing life from a totally different window.

I will leave it there for now, but will share more as my own understanding and mapping of this teaching evolves and deepens along with this unfolding painting series.

In the meantime I truly wish you all the most bright and beautiful lives that you can dream for yourselves and more! This is no time to hold back – be uncompromisingly YOU and shine! The world needs this and You now more than ever.

With love,

Gabrielle x


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