Years ago I worked briefly as an intuitive reader, but my readings were different from what normally constitutes a 'psychic reading.' What I did was not prediction or fortune telling—I merely read the images that were there 'under the surface' of whatever situation the client was addressing. Although people loved my readings and my friends were always asking me for them, I never felt comfortable with the word ‘psychic’ and reading images did not seem to fit with academia, so I pushed it under the rug. Wouldn’t you know, at my first academic job interview when I was asked what I wanted to teach, I found myself blurting out "metaphor." Some part of me knew that metaphor was the basis for how adults learn in life.
The field of depth psychology provided me with the desire to understand this metaphoric level that I could see so easily and cognitive scientist George Lakoff's thirty-five years of research on metaphor gave me the foundation. It turns out that metaphor forms the basis of our cognition, shaping how we think, speak and act in everyday life. Whether conscious or unconscious, we do not think or speak without using metaphor. According to Lakoff and Johnson in their book Metaphors We Live By, metaphorical thought is “unavoidable, ubiquitous, and mostly unconscious.” No matter what the situation, there is an underlying metaphor that is providing a perspective or frame. This is obviously important for understanding how we navigate through life, because how we frame a problem determines how the problem will be solved and the next steps we will take.
William Blake said, "In the universe, there are things that are known, and things that are unknown, and in between, there are doors." Metaphor is the doorway, it’s the way in to other realms, other ways of knowing. Metaphor is an amazing, ancient intelligence that we all possess. Whether we are conscious of it or not, our guidance and clarity always comes to us first as a metaphor. Metaphor lies at the center of all forms of art and creative process, including the creative process of our own life. When we honor and acknowledge the metaphoric images that lie under the surface of our consciousness, we open up new creative channels.
If you'd like to know more about how metaphor works to create change in one's life, check out my Doorway Sessions.