There is an article in the December issue of Tricycle Magazine on the concept of “Lenchat” which is described as the attachment we feel in certain relationships in this life which are painful or stressful and come from a relationship with this person in a past life. I found this article to be very helpful as the principle of Lenchat is to understand the connection we had with others in past lives that reoccurs in this life and causes us pain, and bewilderment. When we are caught in the dynamic of Lenchat we have a relationship in this lifetime that repeats patterns learned in other lifetimes. We feel the same bewildering pain and worry and do not have a rational approach to this person.It could be with a man or a woman: it doesn’t seem to matter. What matters is we replicate the pain. We jump to the aid of this person feeling anxiety about fulfilling their needs, not really understanding why we are connected so strongly to someone we barely know, or, in many cases, someone who is causing us pain by their treatment of the relationship. Lenchat explains to me the people I know who have caused me to use caller ID. They call me and I rush to see who is calling, knowing it is the person whose needs I can never meet and who will always seem angry to me. I peer nervously at the readout and see the number of the demanding one who I feel bound to and somehow believe I must obey, cater to, respond to, etc. The chase goes on. The pressure continues. The pain in my gut becomes more constant. I know that avoiding or ignoring the lenchat person will solve nothing. Eventually I will give in to this need of mine to connect, to believe once again in the power of change and goodness in this lifetime. I will be unable to let go of the feeling that only I can help this person be happy or safe or healthy.The author in Tricycle explains that in order to surmount Lenchat we must separate ourselves from this demanding dynamic and view it for what it is. He describes the origin of the term in Tibet by telling a story of a lake where every year on a certain day the seals in the lake collect and offer fish to the owls flying above. No one knows why this happens but it happens on a regular basis. The owls expect to be fed and are never satisfied, and the seals compulsively collect fish for hours offering it up to the skies, and exhaust themselves. I wonder if we all play an owl or a seal from time to time and I wonder how we stop. If identifying the problem is the beginning, the end might be noticing immediately the pain in my gut when I hear the voice of my owl, and understanding the fish giving will continue until I swim away.
The idea of a surplus of goods was not present in my family so even as adults we bicker and fight over who has more in their pile. At Christmas when we were kids we would each carefully count our pile of presents and then compare the number to other siblings instanting creating familiar pain inside ourselves. Many in my family are so angry and hurt they live their lives in this same way: still looking to see who has the most gifts in their pile. Sometimes I buy into this behavior. Sometimes I don’t. Things have gone so far down the road that many of us don’t even speak to eachother. One family member is in charge of this non speaking policy and carefully monitors all the others to make certain it is obeyed. I am always curious as to where her power comes from and I often see it is all of our fear of abandonment. Like animals, if we are fearful, we are vulnerable and lash out and try very hard to be the one who has the biggest weapon. I doubt there will be a disarmament policy in my lifetime and I pin my hopes on the next generation. This time of year when our hearts are open some in the family look for weapons and some look for love. I know that is why I work as a healer and isn’t it funny I have no power to heal the childhoods of my family?
No matter how I try I can’t escape it! That abandonment demon that sidles up to my shoulder, places her hand on my head, whispers ever so softly in my ear, ” You are alone again!”. Each time I realize I have again involved myself with another person who is incapable of intimacy, who is an alcoholic, who is emotionally removed, who can’t truly love me, I have to look at the amazing wall I have created around myself. I am actually a very creative builder: I use any raw material I can find: tears, anger, hate, joy or even ectascy. Like the little pig who built his house of bricks, mine is impenetrable. As I become “an older woman” , I am taking down the wall. It takes time. I have to move each piece far away to a recycling place where other defensive woman leave their debris. I have to carefully choose which brick I can remove without making the whole wall tumble. This work is tiring. Sometimes I give up and rest in the shadow the wall creates. Sometimes I am so excited at the deconstruction I race to the finish. Mostly I try to look at each brick and imagine who made it, how they did it, and if there was any joy.
Last night I had dinner with an inspiring man. Actually a well known, inspiring man yet I knew nothing about him prior to the event. I found him inspiring to look at from the moment he walked into the room and when I was seated next to him at dinner I felt as if I had known him always. Now, some people might find this a fanciful statement, yet I believe there are those people we come across in our lifetimes whom we have known before, in other lifetimes. I knew I had known this man before and wanted to take his hand and walk out into the city and sit somewhere in a cosy corner and find out what his life had been like in this lifetime as I felt I knew about the others. All of this in about one minute came and went in my mind and I think I am lucky to be able to believe in dreams and other lives as in doing this I am able to understand these odd situations I sometimes find myself in. A connection with someone is magic and a great gift and I am content with that. In the light of day I have learned the man is a well known hero of sorts, a great negotiator, as well as a passionate healer in the world. I am not surprised. I am glad I am traveling these days with an open heart and a path that seems to direct itself.