Effortless Freedom: Julie Dittmar & Matt Kahn
The sound I effortlessly found emitting from myself as I settled in to listen to Julie Dittmar and Matt Kahn give this presentation on the absence on the spiritual path was that of an extended “Ahhhh.” It feels so good to enter into the energy these two teachers emit and know that permission has been given to relax and simply “be.”
I first encountered Spiritual Teacher Matt and Yoga Teacher Julie at the 2011 YogaHub Conference. I found Matt’s teaching so different and so powerful that I sought him out afterwards for some of the one-on-one sessions he offers called “Direct Transmissions” — which can be done via Skype. The effects of my work with Matt, or simply being a receiver to his transmission of Archangel and Ascended Master energy and activation, are still unfolding. My awakened crystalline DNA and the shifts initiated by Matt only begin in the session. They continue to reveal themselves in the weeks and months to come. And so it was with happy anticipation that I entered in this YogaHub session with Matt and Julie, and I was not disappointed.
Julie began the session by explaining that what we were engaging in was the branch of yoga called Dhyana Yoga, a type of yoga that is contemplative. As we received the transmission of energy from Matt, we could also move into Bhakti Yoga that is a joyful, loving devotion in our journey to our true divine nature. She explained we were like flowers blossoming in the garden of humanity, with the ego falling away and opening up new fields of possibility. The result, this Bhakti Yoga, was reverent gratitude for what was there all along.
The excitement both Matt and Julie feel for this particular time on our planet is palpable in their voices. One thing I noticed was an unusual clarity of vocal quality, voice energy — something I’m very attuned to from decades in radio broadcasting and from my own acute clairaudient gifts.
There was what I would best describe as a crystalline quality to the sound of their voices. At the same time I was noticing this, I also experienced a kind of pulsating energy around my heart chakra as it seemed to open to encompass more space and allow more reception of loving energy to be received and flow back out in a kind of heart-breathing exchange. As Matt talked about the effortlessness of freedom in the spiritual path, the vibration was pulsing in such a way as to connect to my 5th, or Throat Chakra — and I was feeling the welling up of energy we recognize as welling up with emotion or tears. Sometimes we call that being “choked up” — but that’s really a misnomer. There’s nothing choking about this sensation — it’s the opposite, it’s the opening up of energy, not the choking off of it. It is simply because in our society we don’t like to be seen showing unexpected emotion or crying in situations where others might see us, that we’ve been programmed to “choke” it off, like restraining a sneeze! We do that, it’s not the energy doing the choking. My advice is — don’t choke it. Let the sensations that arise during these session with Matt’s transmission of energy simply flow and “be.” If tears well up, let them flow. If sensations arise in the throat, the heart or other energy centers, allow the flow. Energy is moving and healing and transforming in this safe, sacred heart centered space.
The central teaching that Matt presents here is that Truth — as in Divine Truth — can’t be pursued, is not something accomplished and does not respond to the effort or struggle of a practice. In fact, all those spiritual practices leave us exhausted and wanting for — Truth. If it can’t be found or maintained by effort, how do we explore the realm of Truth? Matt’s teaching is that it is by letting go of those efforts and following one tool — our INTEREST — that we will find the key to effortlessness. Gradually for some, spontaneously for others, he said, you will find yourself becoming interested in exploring effortlessness. You will become more attentive, and see beyond the story. Without expectation of success or failure, we can come to the joy of effortless freedom.
It was helpful that Matt didn’t make the teaching only about an exalted state of spirituality, but pointed out the sheer humanity and how all we need do is notice — notice our heart beats, notice our breath, notice how effortlessly an argument can spring up and how effortlessly the emotions around the argument can emerge. But then notice how effortlessly reconciliation can occur and all shifts. We all do this all the time, but now awareness increases. Notice the effortless joy and awe of looking on as the sun sets, or the joy of seeing a child at play.
Matt’s prescription for daily effortlessness includes getting a bunch of “Hoorays!” into our emotions and way of seeing. Stuck in traffic? Hooray! Frustrated? Hooray! Notice how effortless that frustration was! Be amused by it all, and hooray for that!
The essential ingredient for effortless freedom turns out to be — EQUALITY. And this is something taught by all the great spiritual teachers, something found in A Course in Miracles, and something made alive by a contemporary teacher like Matt: Equality is a sacred gift. Treat all these things as equal. Don’t discriminate between the annoyance of standing in line at the supermarket and the joy of a sunset. Welcome each experience equally. Hooray! It’s all the same. Or “same same” as Julie says, in her story of a cross-cultural experience in trying to convey she wanted a dress made — same dress, different color. “Same same.” They’re equal.
Have a spiritual garage sale, Matt suggests, and unload the old efforts and practices that have not yielded what you’d hoped. They may have some use to someone else at a particular time, but they are no longer useful to you.
Matt is urging us in this transmission of his energy and teaching, to shift allegiances — to align with an interest in effortlessness, equality, openness, simplicity and — hooray for this one — happiness!
And my heart’s still vibrating from the clarity of the transmission. A visit to this Dhyana/Bhakti sacred space is an effortless hour of joy with Matt & Julie. I only wish I was in Seattle for their in person satsangs!
[tags]Mary Ellen O’Brien, Matt Kahn, Julie Dittmar, effortless, freedom, direct transmissions, Dhyana Yoga, divine truth, emotion [/tags]