Faith is a dark night for man, but in this very way it gives him light.
Pain seems to be a great equalizer, even for the mightiest of us. It signifies a blockage of energy somewhere. There’s nothing like intense, physical pain to encounter our darkest knots of fear, as in a tooth suddenly going ballistic with throbbing. Here we meet the archetypal symbolism of Saturn, the planet related to fear, wherein we are brought face to face with the unavoidable “realities” of the present moment, ones that test and teach us the most about the strength of our backbone—physically and metaphorically. Not surprisingly, Saturn governs the skeletal structure of the bones and teeth.
In the shadow of Saturn’s light, pain can serve several purposes. For one, it helps to stop us and thus disconnect us so our busy circuits can rest while a new configuration is gestating. Likewise, it immobilizes us to mobilize potential new pathways. Pain reduces us in order to elevate us, that is, if we stay awake in observance of the pain and don’t resist the process. Extreme pain—physical, mental, or emotional—shatters us so we can begin fresh. Down on our knees we go, a part of the body also ruled by Saturn!
Thus, we can consciously choose the option of using pain to transcend to a higher level of relinquishment, non-attachment, understanding, and acceptance, which is best described as the cosmic domain of Jupiter, the planet that broadens our faith and wisdom and turns our gaze heavenwards. Whether we perceive pain as the exacting, dour-faced Saturn or the hope-filled benevolence of Jupiter, pain is indeed a disguised or welcome blessing, a teacher that sometimes creeps into our midst, like the tooth whose scale of pain shoots up to 10, to leave its spiritual gifts of gold at the doorstep of our awareness.
For years, I’ve had a lower molar whose condition has been dentally labeled as “guarded” and whose long-term status is questionable. But the tooth has also been extremely stable and pain free for a good long time. To get my undivided attention, it decided to ache to such a degree that all else temporarily melted away in pale insignificance.
I feel at a dentistry crossroads now, however, because this level of dis-ease cannot be ignored. I have prayed about this tooth. Visualized a healthy state until the cows come home. Used affirmations, such as this personally crafted example of a Catherine Ponderesque type of affirmation1 I was using for my tooth: “I fully and freely release my tooth. I loose and let the tooth go. I let go and give it into the loving hands of God who is at the center of this experience so that God can manifest my highest good. All is right. All is well.” Divine Assistance always stands ready—in the ever-present background—watching over us when the gamut of human solutions fail.
Deep inside, having done my inner work and with a strong sense of peace, I felt my tooth was actually healed. It’s been better and more comfortable than it had been for a long time. But focusing on it as though my world turned on its pearly axis has only, perhaps, sent messages of a lack of letting go and of faith. I have no “tangible” evidence of its healed status, no proof my ego can get its undermining tentacles around. The niggles of my outer mind are apparently more powerful, hidden doubters than I imagined.
The recent, intense pain that comes and goes seems to indicate that my “spiritual treatments” are thus far ineffective in healing the compromised tooth. Maybe the real treatment is to love myself unconditionally, just the way I am—perfect this moment, like the iconic Louise Hay has taught millions to do in her life’s work of inspired healing.2 It is as simple as loving self to heal our life, which in actuality is the forgetting of the needy little outer self! Yes, it is simple but not always easy until we are on the brink and make the decision to love not resist and fight. Then it is truly very, very easy.
Because they still live in us today, we can all hear the words of Billy Joel’s famous 1977 lyrics: “I love you just the way you are.” I love me just the way I am! Louise would suggest to me to say it out loud with the sincerest of feelings, using my name, as I daily look in the mirror, repeating: “I love you, Zaney, just the way I am. Every smidgeon about me is just right. I wouldn’t change a single thing.”
Meanwhile in the dental lab of my mouth, unable to sidestep the intense pain Monday morning, I encountered my strongest resistance to this whole, many years’ process of having to deal with an “ill” tooth, the feeling of failure, of being out of control, and the fear of undergoing the event of an “extraction.” Tears of release and relief came flooding out. I realize I need to first forgive myself for any perceived defect of character for having a tooth I have done everything I could to take care of and save. There is no fault or blame, other than the harsh, critical, internal voice that the Stinger Woman whispers (to read about her sly means of sabotage, click on the link below “Fostering What? Part 2″). Self-forgiveness is a great healer. I fully and freely forgive and release my tooth—and myself—to our highest good, whatever that may be. What’s more, the “real” me is not my tooth or any thing bodily!
And I realize, much to my surprise, that I also need to forgive my past and present dentists, each one. Other-forgiveness is just as great a healer. The subtle, unseen knots of negative, self-created energy that bind me to my dentists and my dental history are all let go in order for all of us to be liberated. As I right my inner terrain, the outer terrain naturally rights itself. The energies are then already allowed to move into their perfect new places. A good and ideal solution presents itself for all concerned. And sometimes such a solution or healing, as the energy circulates freely once again, is an actual death. In this case, it may mean the “death” of my tooth. I am free now whether it stays or goes—in the perfect timing of this moment.
In the veracity of the classic outworking of astrology, transiting Jupiter and Saturn (where they are currently in the sky) are now both closely linked with the vital ruler of my natal birth chart. The ruler is derived from the Ascendant or rising sign of the chart. It signifies the physical body, among other things. So, Jupiter and Saturn are both playing upon my body and health, though in contrasting ways. Jupiter’s principles are generous and expansive, while Saturn can be restrictive and limiting.
Famed astrologer, Isabel Hickey claimed that if a person would repeat and meditate on the following words, she or he could attain that Jupiterian transcendence. Enlightenment would be the natural result of allowing and accepting that whatever it is, it is no happenstance. It is meant to be as it is. All is well. All is right. All is peace.
“IT is all right. It IS all right. It is ALL right.
Thanks, Isabel, Louise, and Catherine, for being way-showers. Your wisdom and beautiful life work continue to encourage and uplift us all. Bless you!
P.S. My tooth was extracted quickly and easily late Tuesday morning. I had very little pain, only a small episode in the night. Since then I have felt great! Thanks Dr. Mark Swensen and his gentle assistant, Jessica, at North Point Dental Group!
Text © by Zane Maser, 2010. All rights reserved worldwide.
My editorial guru and technological wizard is Chris Maser, my delightful husband.
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