In embryology, there is a condition known as fetal papyraceus. This occurs when the growth of one twin fetus happens faster than its sibling. As it gets larger, taking more than its fair share of the nutrients and space, it presses the other twin up against the wall of the womb until it starves to death. As sad as this scenario is, it can be an interesting way of examining the development of the twin aspects of ourselves: the physical and spiritual.
We come into this existence as a perfect fetus, both physically and spiritually. We have infinite possibilities with regard to how we will develop. It’s been said that our purpose here is to give birth to our true selves. The image of a pregnant goddess symbolizes this concept in many ancient spiritual traditions. We are spiritual beings having a human experience. This dual or twin nature of our existence has been known for millennia. It’s also been understood that to have spiritual and physical health, both of these twins must develop in a balanced way that complements and supports each other. Too many times, we find aspects of our human experience hampering the development of our spirituality or vice versa. We can get too caught up in the seeming permanence of the material world and become materialistic, shallow or narrow minded. By contrast, we can immerse ourselves in spirituality to such a degree that it becomes an escape. We end up forsaking the human world, forcing ourselves to live on an ethereal plane and become ungrounded. Many organized religions cause people to focus so much on the afterlife that they forget to live this one.
We live in a world of opposites, up/down, left/right, north/south, etc. While they seem opposed to each other at first, their purpose is actually to balance and support each other. This twin nature of ours is more easily viewed through the polarity that most clearly divides us as humans: masculinity and femininity. Many of the roles we assume in life are rooted in our masculine side such as the goal-setter, warrior, aggressor and provider. Likewise, we assume a feminine role when we act as the nurturer, healer or peacemaker. Our masculine twin is all about doing or getting something while the feminine twin excels at being something.
In western culture, it’s very easy for doingness to consume all of our energy and deprive our beingness of a chance to thrive. Workaholics are a great example. How many times did you work too late only to have no time left in the day to meditate, read a good book or feed your soul in another way? Equally, too much beingness or feminine energy can leave us feeling stuck without motivation or the impetus to move our lives forward in a physical way. Focusing on our dis-ease and not doing anything to make ourselves better doesn’t create the possibility for our healing or ease to be born into this reality.
Once we’re physically born, our human lives unfold and we learn to breathe into certain aspects of ourselves. Those are the parts of us that get to grow. The less dominate or less expressed parts of our personalities atrophy, fade into the background and end up becoming what some have called our “shadow” self. These are the parts of ourselves we would love to express but either ignore or don’t feel we have a right to. We don’t allow them to manifest and grow. Frustration is a good sign that there’s an aspect of your lesser twin that’s aching to be born. These are the parts of ourselves that we’ve flattened and practically starved into non-existence.
Starving parts of ourselves away leads to imbalance. It also has many causes and can usually be traced back to a parent, caregiver, teacher, clergyman or other authority figure who told us we didn’t have a right to do something or feel a certain way. As a result, we cut that part of ourselves off from our attention and our life force. Sexuality is a prime example. We’ve all been sexually repressed to some degree. I believe that anyone who is dogmatic or fanatical in their religion has a closet filled with repression, sexually speaking and otherwise. Is it just a coincidence that the gay community, after decades of repression, was impacted so disproportionately with regard to HIV when compared to the heterosexual population? I don’t think so.
The point is that repression of any of our divine twin nature characteristics results in imbalance and depletes our spiritual immunity. Eventually, our physical immunity follows suit and we get sick because when the soul starts to die, so does the body. Illness is a challenge to give birth to those unexpressed parts of ourselves. It’s a call to ask, “What is my twin not doing or being that I need to attend to?”
Perhaps the biggest polarity of the human/spirit experience is the idea of whether everything is pre-determined or if we truly have a choice in how our lives unfold. After all, repression is almost always forced upon us at an early age, without our consent or choice. Like all balancing polarities, I believe it’s 50/50. We come into life with a certain set of “soul traumas” or an energetic signature from our family history that pre-disposes us to certain circumstances. Our free will comes into play when we decide what we’re going to DO with those situations. It may take us longer to get from point A to point B because of where we’re starting compared to someone else. Even so, we will get there nonetheless if we continue to choose to move forward and regain balance by recognizing those parts of ourselves that we’ve neglected.
Integrating our masculine and feminine, spiritual and physical selves doesn’t need to take a lifetime. It doesn’t even need to be complicated. All it involves is giving ourselves permission to be who we really are and live our best life. It’s also about learning to ignore the right things…and that’s usually other people’s opinions.
Dr. Habib Sadeghi D.O., is the founder of Be Hive of Healing, an integrative health center based in Los Angeles. With more than fifteen years of direct patient care, he provides a comprehensive knowledge of revolutionary healing protocols in integrative, osteopathic, anthroposophical, environmental, and family medicine, as well as clinical pharmacology. Through a unique and individualized approach to healthcare that includes evidence-based, Western medical interventions and intuitive Eastern healing modalities, Dr. Sadeghi has been able to achieve astounding results in patient cases that were otherwise deemed hopeless by traditional medicine. His success in integrating Eastern and Western healing practices has earned him a respected reputation resulting in a patient base that reaches around the world. His patients come from as far as Columbia, Mexico, Germany, Thailand, France, Canada, Israel and the United Kingdom, seeking his unique combination of integrative therapies.
He served as an attending Physician and Clinical Facilitator at UCLA-SM Medical Center until recently and is currently a Clinical Instructor of Family Medicine at Western University of Health Sciences. Having personally experienced miraculous results through the usage of integrative medicine, he passionately promotes this protocol among residents and medical students. He is a member of the Physician’s Association for Anthroposophic Medicine and International Post-Graduate Medical Training for Anthroposophic Medicine. An active member of the Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation and American Holistic Medical Association, he is regularly sought after as an expert in the fields of nutritional therapy, dietary supplementation and detoxification for chronic conditions such as heart disease, cancer and auto immune diseases at venues around the world.
Dr. Sadeghi serves as an on-air health expert for FOX Newsand Geraldo at Large. He is co-author of the book, The Light, along with other renowned leaders in the fields of health and spirituality.