A few years before my mom passed away, she told me for the first time that she could see people’s auras. It wasn’t something she was ever taught how to do. It wasn’t even something she had to try to do. She said for as long as she could remember she just saw colors around people… all people.
Curious to me, she had never talked to anyone about it. She never researched what the different colors were thought to mean. She just saw them and accepted for herself that everyone has them.
When I was in Sedona this week, I went to one of the many aura photography places to see what would show up in my aura picture. The computer was set up with a camera and some kind of biometric sensor that took some kind of readings from your left hand. When my technician turned on the camera and I looked at the screen, I saw exactly the colors my mom thad described to me. She said they were mostly orange but mixed with sea foam green around the edges.
I had been skeptical about aura photography, but this felt like confirmation of its validity! Or, maybe it was a confirmation that my mom really did see colors. Looking at the picture, I missed my mom and her special gifts. I imagined what it must have been like for her to see people surrounded by colors like that all the time. Her world must have looked very different from the world I think I see.
Perception constructs our reality. And now I wanted to “know” all the things she must have intuitively known about me.
I dived into the 23-page aura report like it would contain the answers — finally! — to all my questions about my psyche and my way of being in the world, like it would tell me why I am the way I am and how to fix it.
But the report was confusing. My chakras are all pretty much in balance, some are stronger than others, but not by a whole lot. My aura isn’t very big, but shines about my whole body evenly. My yin and yang, right and left sides are in balance.
In short: Nothing is wrong with me!
That’s when I realized that … nothing is wrong with me. I have spent most of my adult life trying to figure out what is wrong with me, why, and how to fix it. I’ve done talk therapy and yoga therapy. I’ve studied many different psychological and spiritual systems, looking for the narrative that seems to fit best. Within western psychology I’ve studied existential psychology, Rogers, Perlman, Freud, Lacan, Gilligan, Horney. I’ve read tons of Buddhist theory and yoga psychology. I’ve read the I Ching and the Gita and Rumi. I’ve read about chakras and somatic psychology and doshas. And I’ve approached all this reading from the perspective of solving the PROBLEM that is however it is I think I am.
I’m too needy. I think too much. I’m too judgmental. I’m afraid of commitment. I don’t know what I want.
What this aura photography helped me to see — whether it’s really a photograph of my actual aura or not — is that I can quit looking for what’s wrong with me, and instead turn my attention to acknowledging and accepting my unique combination of attributes and motivations and drives. Stop trying to figure out WHY they are there, and instead work on accepting how my own personal set ingredients combine to create my own unique perspective of the world, and my own unique experience of life.
This is probably going to have to include acknowledging and accepting my inner critic! But perhaps I can learn from this part of myself. Like the other attributes, the inner critic filters the reality I perceive and influences the reality I create. I shall do my best just to witness how it works and know that even if it is “me,” it is not all of me, and it is ok.