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The Grace of Protection - Caroline Myss

Caroline MyssJanuary Newsletter: The Grace of Protection

As many of you already know, I am fascinated by the nature of grace and the many ways that grace manifests itself in our lives. I’m the sort of person who is given to slipping into the observational mode; that is, I may look like I’m participating in a conversation or a meal but a part of me has slipped outside the moment and entered into that exterior space from which I can observe the impersonal patterns that are always at work in our lives.

One of the patterns that every single one of us has is the “protection” pattern. We are compulsive about saying to our loved ones, “Get home safely,” or “Be careful”, or “Call me when you get home so I know you got there,” or “Don’t stay out to late.”

We have a need to wrap our loved ones in expressions of protection lest something happen to them out there in the big and dangerous world. We never think something will happen to us, oddly enough. We tend to say, “Oh, don’t worry about me,” or “Nothing is going to happen to me,” but we find it impossible to have that level of confidence about those who matter the most to us. Aren’t we a curious lot?


Why do we feel this need to utter these mantras of protection? Well, the obvious reason is that we want the people we love to know we love and worry about them and of course, we want them to be safe. The less obvious reason is that we are superstitious. We have this fear that if we don’t say a “protection mantra” to someone before they leave the house, something horrible like an accident actually will happen to them and it will be all our fault. The third reason, which is subtler, is that these protection mantras are primal prayers; that is, they are unconscious, basic requests for the grace of protection. The truth is, we can’t stop ourselves from invoking grace, even if we don’t realize we’re doing it. (Go ahead and try it – try to NOT tell someone to “drive carefully”.)

Deep within us we have a connection to the Divine that transcends our intellectual trappings and our personalities and that connection instinctively shifts some part of us into the act of prayer, which is to say, a part of us unconsciously recognizes that “someone” out there is in charge of doing the protecting. That the prayer is one of protection is as intriguing to me as is our instinct to utter mantras of protection out loud, as if some part of us understands what our minds simply cannot grasp: a request for protection strengthens a person’s field of grace. Never mind how that happens – it just happens. The needs of the mind can be so distracting when it comes to mystical truths.

The Grace of Protection is more real than the mind can comprehend, which is probably unfortunate in many circumstances, because if the power of that grace ever became real for a person – for you, as an example – think of how much your life would change. To put this into perspective, reflect for a moment on how much of your life is built around protecting yourself from all the many things you fear in your life. How long is that list? We fear job loss, we fear something happening to our family and friends, we fear financial crisis, we fear – well, I can sum it up by saying we fear anything that makes us feel vulnerable so far as our capacity to survive is concerned. And that’s natural. No one wants his or her survival system to be overturned.

And yet, we would be blind to not recognize we are living in a time in which our survival systems are being overturned. To not speak about that is to not speak about the elephant in the middle of the room. We are living at a time of great and profound change and we all of our lives are being effected by the events unfolding in the world around us – and in America. And our lives will continue to be changed and challenged – which makes the subject of this particular grace all the more significant and all the more valuable.

Buddha taught, as so many of you know, that “change” is the nature of life – a constant principle. Pain comes from fighting change, from wanting things to stand still or go backwards. Change, as an archetypal principle, has many expressions. There are seasons of change that contain greater elements of speed and chaos, such as the ones we are now in; yet, that does not mean your life is any less directed. To say this differently, some seasons of life present change through a massive outpouring of human creativity, such as the United States experienced in the 70’s and 80’s. That creativity wasn’t experienced by all nations but “creativity” was a strong thread that came through the United States. It’s easy to find your way during seasons of “creativity” as the mystical laws support the birth of so many new directions for people. Your life path, however, shifts to a completely different expression during a season of chaos and you it is easy to think your life purpose has evaporated. But in truth, most people are still looking for direction through the lens of creativity, not realizing that the seasons have shifted and thus so has their life path.

Seasons change and turn, as the wisdom of the Old Testament tells us – “There is a season for everything”. We have left the season of creativity and entered a season of chaos, which is natural if you understand mystical law. (Please note: I am teaching a workshop on the Mystical Laws in the spring and their application in your life. I invite you to check out my web site). Even in midst of this “change of seasons”, however, the plans for each life continue to unfold, only they unfold within the archetype of energy of “chaos” as opposed to the archetype of “creativity”. I am addressing this extraordinary phenomenon in depth in my workshop on the Mystical Laws as I consider this to be one of the most essential topics I can teach.

Through it all, the grace of Protection remains a constant – which is my message in this newsletter. A friend sent me one of those rich thoughts – the type you cut out and tape to a mirror – and it is most appropriate for this topic:

“The will of God will never take you where the grace of God does not protect you.”

As we journey ahead in 2010, keep that beautiful thought in mind along with the wisdom that we have entered into a season of chaos and change and yet your life path – your Sacred Contract – continues to unfold even amidst this rapidly shifting world. It’s up to each person to learn to see differently, to not look to the past for inspiration about the future, and to trust that this most powerful grace is given to you in abundance. From now on, every time someone says, “Keep safe”, just imagine a shaft of grace pouring down from heaven, surrounding you like sparkling light. You’ll never hear those words again without realizing they are really a prayer.

Keep safe, every one.


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