From the depths of our deepest wounds emerge our greatest gifts. Similarly, contained within the fate we were given, emerges a destiny when we choose to work with the fate. However, destiny cannot emerge until our fate is submitted to. That means standing back and looking at everything that was given and has happened and asking ourselves where the opportunities for self development and self healing lie. If we come from lack, then discovering the fullness of our being lies as an opportunity before us, if we come from conflict, then peace and reconciliation lies before us, if we come from abandonment and despair, then connection to all life lies before us. Whatever the lack, its opposite awaits us. Therefore the difficult and challenging aspects of our fate give us the opportunity to springboard towards a destiny of our own choosing instead of bemoaning that which is less than desirable.

In submitting to fate, we receive this life and all of its circumstances as a gift and we get on with the task of digging for the gold that awaits us.

So many of my clients come to me saying 'I have this issue, this wound, this problem, and I want it to go away'. Experience tells me that when we most want something to 'go away' or we want to 'get rid' of it, it tends to stick to us like proverbial mud. I tell my clients that the objective is not rid ourselves of the wound, but to change our relationship to it. When a parent loses a child, that wound never goes away, it remains for life, however, over time, the nature of the wound can change and how it operates in the parent's life also transforms. This is also true four our own deeper wounds. Our wounds exist in three states: Burden, Teacher, Companion.


We can know when our wound is a burden as we are often still stuck in blame, self pity and invariably allow ourselves to be triggered by others and we invariably view the world through the veil that the wound had placed on our vision of other people and the world at large. When our wound is a burden we take less responsibility for ourselves, our reactions and frequently go either into conflict or withdrawal. We interpret the actions of others through the lens of our wound and we frequently re-create the same circumstances over and over again, often with different people. However, when we step back and look through the eyes of our greater self, the occurrences often have more to do with our reactions that actually what happened. Neutral bystanders will invariably see things differently to our own wounded self.

We become stuck in burden when we need others to change, to give us what we didn't get. We remain stuck in burden until the moment we decide to simply give up the need to get what we didn't get from others and start to focus on self-care and fulfilling our own needs. We remain stuck in burden when we stubbornly refuse to accept that we simply didn't get what we need - when the fear of facing that painful truth seems far too much for us to bear or to integrate. We remain stuck in burden when we allow our suffering to continue as a way of demonstrating to others 'Look what you did to me!'.


This is the next stage of living and working with our wounds. At this stage we are still reacting, projecting, blaming and falling into self-pity, but we have simply become more aware of what we are doing. At this stage we are able to retrospectively view what happened, our reaction, our masks, our defences and reactions with a little more neutrality and honesty. We have become much more self aware and with this awareness we are able to make much more self responsibility and begin to truly address the wound and its workings in our lives. One of the challenges at this stage is to be gentle with ourselves. If we have come from a family in which children were guided and disciplined through a lot of criticism, then we are likely to beat ourselves up a lot at this stage - which simply piles even more negative energy onto our wound, making it more difficult to reach a solution. Gentle self awareness is what is required here and a reminder that if you have a question concerning your self-healing, the answer is always love.


At this stage our wounds become our friends. In every situation in which we can find ourselves triggered into defence, we become gently aware of our own wounding in the background and we gently make the choice not to go into defence. If we do go into defence or have a reaction, we start to take immediate responsibility for it and gently take ourselves off into more gentle self-healing work that feeds and nourishes our soul. Whilst it is true that others can hurt us in the present and that our reaction is not always from a place of being triggered by an event in the present that stimulates an old wound, when our wounds are our companions, we react with less voracity. When our wound is our friend, our compassion increases and we are much more easily able to see other beyond the veils of their own wounds and defences. We recognise them for who they truly are and how they are feeling in the moment. When our wound is our friend we no longer blame or push back, but stand with both feet firmly on the ground with an open heart - feeling no need to be forgiven or to forgive, but simply to be in the present moment with what is presenting itself. When our wound is our friend, we don't make the other wrong and we can choose to withdraw peacefully until a better opportunity presents itself to deal with the matter at hand in a more constructive manner.

As we embrace our wounds, firstly as teachers, then as companions through life, it is at this stage we begin to submit to our destiny - our childhood and other circumstances are what they are and are unchangeable - with the exception of our feelings and reactions. In submitting to our fate be begin to see the opportunities for growth inherent within the wound and we start seeing the many opportunities that have been presented to us. For many of us, it is the very seeking for solutions to our pain that leads us onto a path of encountering our own soul and the much greater part of ourselves - even to the Divine.

Author's Bio: 

John L. Payne is the author of 'The Healing of Individuals, Families and Nations' , 'The Language of the Soul' and 'The Presence of the Soul', available from Amazon or Findhorn Press.

He has facilitated more than 300 workshops in 5 continents and is a healer, shaman, Family Constellations Facilitator, Trainer and Author. Visit his website at