A couple years ago, I caught the eye of a stranger in the crowd down at the waterfront. She was much older and quite disheveled. We stared at each other long enough that it should have been uncomfortable, but it wasn't. Her eyes drew me in. Admittedly, I might have normally turned away either to avoid feeling guilty (for having so much when she obviously had so little) or to avoid her asking for money (I only had plastic on me and the thought of rejecting her felt like a betrayal).
But another few seconds passed and a sense of familiarity washed over me.There... in her eyes...they were my eyes! And her feelings, her fears, her joys, her hardships, her pain, her love...they were mine, too; but this wasn't a typical "empath moment". I wasn't just feeling what she was feeling. Something had shifted, deepened, or released inside of me and as I blinked away a rush of tears, I looked harder still into her eyes and I heard my soul's voice whisper...There I Am.
There I was. I recognized myself in the atoms and molecules, in the blood and the bones, in the breath and the life force of this stranger. But, of course, we weren't strangers. The woman sitting there was a part of me as much as I was a part of her... as we were to everyone surrounding us...everywhere.
I had learned about the concept of Oneness over the years from various spiritual leaders and I believed it to be true, yet only through that profound experience was I expanded into the knowing of it.
I'll admit that I was a little freaked out by the whole thing. I wondered if I'd be able to look anyone in the eye again without getting bowled over with the sensation of Oneness. That didn't happen. Actually, it took some extensive meditation and soul searching to retrace my steps to that divine space again. And during that process, two things came about:
Jeannette is the author of the novel "Diary of a Teenage Empath" and two HSP/Empath workbooks for children & teens. She is an Integrative Health Coach who, with her mentor Dr. Wendy Nickerson, launched the first-ever accredited HSP training program for mental health professionals. She leads an HSP community group in Halifax and advocates for HSPs in the mental health community.
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