CK: Would you please share some of the concepts that you teach in your new book that would be relevant for this group of messengers and transformational authors?
PD: Absolutely. It would be my honor. So, the first thing that I began to realize in the midst of this creative process was that there’s a natural flow to things, there’s a natural timing to things, that it’s almost like there’s this river that runs through life and that in any given moment we’re either pushing against that river, which means that we have our own expectations and our own outcomes in mind, or where we believe that we should be, which really just creates suffering.
Or, we’re actually just flowing along with this river and allowing it to run its course and allowing it to take us to where it needs to go. And what I’ve discovered, Christine, is that people are either available to feel their feelings in the midst of their journey or they’re repressing or suppressing them. And that’s why in the book, Discovering Your Soul Signature, your soul signature is your core essence. It is who you are. It is your most authentic self.
And I’ve discovered that who we are at our core is actually love. There’s this infinite wellspring of love that resides within every single human being, and that love is creative, that love is abundant, that love is healthy and radiant and luminous. That love is able to be intimate and connected in a way that most people only dream of. And that the more I embarked on this journey, and the book is literally staged as a transformation adventure, out of fear and into love, because, for me, that’s the greatest shift that we’re all in the midst of.
You know, if you’re just about to write your book, the thing that stops you from committing that first word to the page is your fear, your fear of failure, or maybe even your fear of success.
Let’s say you’ve written your book and you’re actually out in the world and you’re about to go after an agent or go after a publisher. Well, what you have to confront then is your fear of rejection, or your fear of acceptance, and ultimately, once you’ve written the book, there’s, of course, the ultimate fear, which is that “My soul that I’ve poured onto these pages will not be received by my fellow human beings.” Rejection. Abandonment. Disappointment.
And underneath all these differences faces of the creative process, there are actually emotional layers that we have to be willing to feel as authors and as writers. And I believe that the more that we can access our sadness and our fear and our anger, and the more we can be vulnerable in our emotionality as we’re translating our experiences into the written word, the more we have an ability to transcend the written word and deliver something that has the ability to ascend the reader into their greatest and grandest expression.
So that’s why, literally, in every single stage of this book, in going through every single facet of this book, it’s like I almost had to deeply immerse myself in it. You know, it’s the equivalent of being Daniel Day Lewis and stepping into a character and never breaking character. It’s like I finally had to fully embrace the character of Panache and be so fully committed to that and so fully committed to the pain of that and the jubilation of that and the joy of that and the sorrow of that and the potential abandonment of that, rejection and betrayal and all of these wonderful things that we get to feel as human beings, but ultimately, by the end of it, it didn’t matter whether it was ever received by another person or not. I had allowed the creative process to fundamentally destroy every false notion that I had in my mind of myself.
And so, again, it’s feel the fear. Experience your fear. Naturally, you’re going to be terrified before you write something, especially if it’s transformational, especially if it’s personal, especially if it’s drawing on your personal experience. Feel the fear. Take some breaths. Experience that fear, and then do it anyway.
And then, before you know it, words become sentences, sentences become paragraphs, paragraphs become chapters, chapters become a book. And that’s the journey. When you get to a place that’s deeply emotional, a place of trauma, you know, in your life, that you experience, it’s like, for me, I talk about the time when I was bullied, and I remember that I would cry myself to sleep because I didn’t want to share the abject pain of this being bullied with my parents. And so I internalized it, and I would just cry myself to sleep, and I even got to a point to where I questioned my very existence.
And it’s like I had to go there. I had to be willing to put myself back in that place of sadness, back in that place of rejection, back in that place of questioning my existence in order to connect with this greater collective expression that is humanity, and especially those parts that are willing to, that are on the verge of, in the same way as I was, giving up on themselves. It’s like we have to go to those parts of ourselves that we’re afraid to go to in order to reach out to the most people that we can, or to impact the most people that we can on this Earth.
And it was the same way with my anger. You know, we have to be willing to go beyond societal norms and our conditioning in order to get to the truth, and the truth is that anger is a great emotion. It’s a great energy. It’s just never been modeled to us constructively.
And so, in writing this book, and in undergoing all of these different stages and all these different phases, one of my favorite chapters is actually Inner Sabotage, Inner Self Sabotage, and this greater recognition that even once you’ve gone through all of that, right when you’re on the verge of your breakthrough, right when you’re on the verge of something immense happening in your life, the inner saboteur kicks in and tries to undermine the magnificence that you’re available to in each moment.
And so, you know, this whole book is actually a blueprint on how to align with your authentic self, how to navigate the aspects of yourself that you’ve been taught are wrong or bad and to meet them with spaciousness and nurturing and love, which I believe is the most essential thing, especially when you’re creative, especially when you’re empathic, especially when you’re speaking about these subjects, especially when you’re including yourself and your story in the greater transformational dialogue that you’re delivering.
Panache Desai, author of “Discovering Your Soul Signature” (Random House, April 2014) is a contemporary thought leader whose message of love and self-acceptance has drawn thousands of people from around the world to his seminars and workshops. A highly sought-after speaker featured regularly in print, online, and broadcast media, Panache recently appeared with Oprah Winfrey on the Emmy Award–winning series Super Soul Sunday. He is considered a top-tier faculty member at Omega Institute; and is a featured speaker at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, I Can Do It!, and Celebrate Your Life; he’s also a regular contributor to The Huffington Post.