Week 9 – No Virgins Were Harmed in the Making of This Miracle

This year, I’m sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

Welcome to week nine of this free series. Settle into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


Along with the revised sense of God and creation, came a new
appreciation of the energetic universe itself. As with God and
creation, I didn’t go looking for new ways of understanding
the cosmos. These puzzle pieces were quietly dropped into my
spiritual worldview on my behalf.

Even though it now embraces physics (meta, quantum and
astro) to some degree, my spiritual worldview is also one of
awe and wonder. I seem to have a newfound appreciation for
the miraculous nature of existence itself. My core definition
of ‘what is a miracle?’ has changed, and the quasi-scientific
framework, for me, only adds to its profound beauty and mys-
tery. So let’s talk about miracles. What they are, what they’re
not, and perhaps have never been.

Modern culture tends to look back on ancient civilizations
with a sort of bemusement at what we consider their child-
like naiveté, or superstitious approach toward spirituality. We
shake our heads at their efforts to appease the Gods Out There,
in order to insure a good harvest, or make a plague go away.

Silly ancients, we tell ourselves. Good thing we’re so much more
sophisticated now.

But it strikes me that our modern approach is really not so
different, minus the odd blood sacrifice here or there. Occur-
rences we interpret as evidence of the spiritual realm in action
(i.e. miracles), are really more like impartial displays of the
structural laws of the universe.

Various branches of science speak of the existence of mul-
tiple dimensions, the first four of which together describe
the recognizable laws of space-time as we experience them
here on Earth. Some scientists cite evidence for six or
seven more dimensions beyond those, or however many
more they can measure with instruments, or postulate as
suggested by mathematical probabilities. Metaphysical
teachings, however, allow for a virtually infinite number
of dimensions, each one related to an equal number of
possible timelines.

You know the virtual reality games we’ve been talking about?
This infinity of dimensional timelines explains the mecha-
nism through which these richly complex illusions of life can
exist. The direction of any given game can never be definitive-
ly known in advance, because endless moment-by-moment
possibilities exist for any outcome. A grand game indeed, and
one befitting the divine beings we are.

I’ve heard the mechanism described the following way. For
what it’s worth, this simplified analogy feels accurate to me in
its basic explanation of how multi-dimensionality works, in
relation to the life experience of any given gamer:

Your individual game of life is like an old-fashioned slide
carousel (ask your parents), which is, in turn, hooked up to
a slide projector. Although there are indeed infinite slides to
choose from, some events (slides) are pre-programmed into
your individual carousel before you start the game. Yet how
you respond to each slide as you see it projected onto your
screen, is entirely up to you. Your choice of responses,
essentially, is the game.

That’s because your response to the projected image is what
determines which new slide will tumble in next from the
vast universe of possible slides, to take the next slot in your
carousel. How divinely aligned (or misaligned) was your re-
action to the last slide you saw projected onto your screen?
How high or low frequency was the nature of your response?

Whatever it was, you will magnetically attract a slide that is
its vibrational match. And your game will move seamlessly
into that new direction.

So a miraculous healing (to swing back around to the topic
of miracles—we do get there eventually), does not occur be-
cause you had an illness, then you prayed, and the next minute
that illness was miraculously healed. Technically speaking,
there’s no such thing as a healing, miraculous or otherwise.

It’s just that your beautiful heartfelt prayer lifted you into a
higher-vibration alternate timeline. One in which that partic-
ular illness doesn’t exist in your body. In some other timeline,
the illness continues unabated.

We’re sliding between timelines all the time, but it’s usually
quite seamless, with only minor changes. Our bodies tend to
age imperceptibly from one day to the next, for example. Each
of the body’s minor physical changes inhabits its own timeline.

We don’t pay much attention to the subtle, seemingly linear
progression from one of these timelines to the next, because
the small changes are considered normal and expected.

Bigger shifts, like the sudden disappearance of an illness,
are noticed and labeled miracles. Out of the ordinary shifts
like these clearly demonstrate in fact, timelines are under no
obligation to behave incrementally or linearly. Dimensional
timelines act like a bunch of random slides, and any one of
them can fall into your carousel at any given moment.

They only seem to create small linear changes most of the
time because that’s what we expect. Large anomalies are called
miracles because they defy our expectations of what is pos-
sible. We therefore tend to attribute them to the intervention
of external deities.

But they are the result of connecting with your own in-
ner deity—the one who has always known its own true divine
identity, and knows perfectly well how multi-dimensional-
ity works, even if you don’t.

The shift to another timeline is not the miracle. You,
gloriously multi-dimensional you, are the miracle.


I’ll give you a couple of my own relatively trivial examples of
timeline shifting, based on high-vibrational responses to ex-
ternal stimuli. I have hundreds of similar examples to draw
from. Suffice it to say I wholeheartedly embraced the above
explanation of malleable timelines and dimensional possibili-
ties when I encountered it, because it so closely matches and
explains phenomena I’ve been experiencing for many years in
my own life.

Here’s the first example. Back in 2005, a few weeks after that
first powerful awakening episode, I was invited to attend a cli-
ent’s annual general meeting and give a presentation to board
members. This annual gathering was a three-day event held
at an all-inclusive luxury resort in Cabo San Lucas. The resort
boasted half a dozen immaculate blue swimming pools, in-
cluding the de rigueur swim-up bar. Because God forbid you’d
have to towel off before refilling your drink order.

I was still kind of buzzing with I-am-the-universe-itself
Awareness after that initial awakening. So after a day or two
of drifting around the various pools inside the resort complex,
I decided it might be nice to wander down to the beach and
have a solo experience of actual Nature.

One could see the beach from the resort but nobody seemed
to go there. It felt oddly forbidden, almost, to leave the perim-
eter walls of the compound. As I stepped beyond the outer
boundary I discovered there was actually good reason for that.
They must’ve been using some kind of invisible electronic
fencing to keep the bugs out.

The moment I stepped past the walls, time seemed to slow
and I sensed the attention of thousands of bugs all turning
to zero in on me. Uh-oh. Half a second later the cumulative
buzzing filled my senses as I felt myself surrounded by raven-
ous airborne creatures, the first few giant welts already starting
to form on my arms and legs.

But then all by itself, a knowing arose from someplace within
me. With complete authority I silently said to the insect hordes,
I am sacred. I am not an appropriate food source for you.

Everything immediately stopped in mid-buzz, and all bugs
disappeared, along with the welts already existing on my body.
At the time I didn’t know whether to be more startled by the
self who rose up out of nowhere to make that proclamation, or
by the bug-free miracle it seemingly caused.

I had no explanation for the miracle at the time. Nowadays,
I would say the divinity-assisted proclamation of my own in-
herent worthiness brought me into closer vibrational align-
ment with divine truth. I was seeing a bit more like the Creator
sees. And this high-vibrational state shifted me into a timeline
where that particular beach held no flying bugs.


Funnily enough my next example is also about bugs. I’m new
to organic gardening, and I wanted to try growing cauliflow-
ers. I knew it wouldn’t be easy because so many different kinds
of critters are incredibly fond of them. To make it even more
interesting I wasn’t content with just going organic; I wanted
to try growing them in accordance with our no-kill/no ene-
mies policy. So there would be no bug murder going on here.

It soon became obvious it would be a small miracle in its
own right if these plants survived long enough to actually pro-
duce a head of cauliflower, because the beautiful blue-green
leaves themselves were so desired by so many. Every day I
would pick off, or spray water off, at least six different kinds of
invasive insect. I didn’t want to hurt them, just remove them
from the plant. I kept infestation at bay, and as long as there
were only a few of each type of bug I found it easy to remain
loving while I did it.

About seven weeks into the process we took one evening
off to go to a music festival, so the cauliflower plants went
forty-eight hours instead of twenty-four without my usual
attentions. I came back the following day to serious infes-
tation—and every gardener knows how hard it is to reverse
an infestation after it’s already established, no matter what
methods you use.

Some creatures eat a multitude of pinprick holes. Others,
given the chance, want to eat the whole plant down to the
stalks. And then there are the ones who simply prefer to suck
the life out of the veins and stems. Still others like to lay their
eggs on the leaf ’s underside, to give the caterpillar hatchlings
a delicious buffet lunch before turning into winged things
themselves and repeating the cycle. Most of the more ma-
ture leaves were hearty and strong enough to withstand the
multi-pronged attacks, but I was dismayed to find many of the
younger, smaller leaves had been decimated.

A number of these vulnerable baby leaves now held eggs,
three or four types of bugs and tiny newborn caterpillars in
addition to having already been eaten down to lacy stalks.
I was surprised to notice myself becoming a little bit angry
and indignant on behalf of these defenseless baby leaves. It
wasn’t fair
, I thought, that the innocent babies were getting
attacked from so many quarters, when they were obviously too
young and tender to defend themselves
. And I noticed I got
a little bit ruthless in my bug and egg removal. They had, in
some small way, become my enemies.

Many weeks earlier I had relinquished my expectation, or
right, to an actual cauliflower harvest. I had been asking very
pointedly for some time, to be shown not only how to correctly
witness ‘enemies out there,’ but also to know how to properly
behave in response to their transgressive actions. Not just in
my garden, but also in the world I perceived outside me.

I had watched the cauliflower leaves attracting transgressors
and (much the same as while losing my lettuce) I realized
right away if forced to choose, I’d far rather learn this lesson
about enemies, than harvest cauliflowers. Even though we
really like cauliflowers.

I was already pretty good at knowing there’s no such thing
as an enemy in truth. But what about taking action at times it’s
clearly needed, whether here in the garden or in more extreme
cases out in the world at large? Was I just supposed to think
spiritual thoughts and look the other way? That answer didn’t
seem quite right, in the chaotically transgressive age we live in.

Was it ever appropriate to take a stand against transgressors, I
wondered? Sometimes action is surely required. Isn’t it?

I knew my cauliflowers and their many devoted admirers
were here, in part, to teach me about this larger issue, surely
one of the most urgent lessons of our time. So my anten-
nae went up immediately when I noticed I was becoming
angry at the unfairness of the relentless attacks upon inno-
cent babies. I correctly identified this interpretation as my
own subterranean ‘enemy generator’ at work. I didn’t buy
the propaganda.

On the other hand I didn’t embrace the lesson right away,
either. I didn’t fully dive into the opportunity clearly being of-
fered, even though I’d been asking for this all along. After all,
action was required first, right? The little buggers were every-
where. So I acted.

For two days I used three times as much water as before,
grimly blowing the insects off the leaves over and over. They
hopped right back on, of course. But I made sure I disrupt-
ed their nest building efforts, and slowed down the creation
of colonies. If one or two of them drowned in the process, I
wasn’t all that sorry.

On the third day I sprayed the insect hordes off the first cou-
ple of plants, as I had been doing for the past two days, acutely
aware of the futility of the exercise. It was only then I admit-
ted to myself, I hadn’t bothered to give full consideration to
the lesson at hand. I hadn’t yet taken it seriously enough to
base my actions upon it. Recognizing I had little to lose at this
point, I paused as I approached the next group of cauliflower
beds, sprayer in hand, and chose to view all the living beings
in those beds as being equally of God. I persistently basked
in their Love-Light divinity, keeping at it until I could clearly
feel my own.

I felt the telltale softness, as everything in my world now
became imbued with the gentle glow of divinely illumined
Awareness. And then I lifted the first leaf of the next cauli-
flower plant in line to be sprayed. It held eighty percent fewer
bugs than the plants I’d sprayed a minute ago. The rest of the
plants showed roughly the same degree of reduced infestation.
Somehow I wasn’t surprised.

I suppose it qualifies as a small miracle. Yet I prefer the
metaphysical explanation, which seems to fit better: I brought
the electromagnetic patterns of my thought-forms into more
coherent alignment with the much higher-frequency patterns
of divine truth. I thought a bit more like the Creator thinks, if
you prefer that wording.

As a result, my own overall frequency lifted higher, which
popped me, quite seamlessly, into a dimensional timeline that
was a vibratory match for my own more divinely aligned fre-
quency. A timeline in which the more devastating degree of in-
festation hadn’t ever occurred. Or maybe it was a timeline in
which other predatory bugs had already found the leaf-eating
critters, and had obligingly hoovered up eighty percent of them.

That might be the more logical timeline explanation, be-
cause the plants’ leaves were still every bit as damaged as they’d
been before the timeline shift. If the infestations had never oc-
curred, it would stand to reason the leaves would also reflect
far less damage. That would’ve been awesome, to witness a
garden full of cauliflower plants suddenly restored to their for-
merly pristine blue-green beauty and vitality. It would’ve been
a sparklier miracle for sure, than the somewhat more prosaic
marvel I experienced.

It would have more closely resembled the first example I
gave you, of the already existing mosquito bites on my arms
and legs that disappeared along with the mosquitoes, on that
Mexican beach. In that earlier instance, I received a little tur-
bo-charged boost of divine knowing. Undoubtedly that’s what
helped shift me into a super high-vibrational version of that
beach moment.

Back to the cauliflower leaves, had I been utterly convinced
of the Godliness of all plants, all leaf-eating bugs and myself
alike, my own frequency might have risen to such an extent I
would perhaps have attracted a substantially higher-frequency
slide, or timeline, into my carousel—one in which no harm
had ever been done. As it was, my sincere witness of joint God-
liness fell within the realm of an enthusiastic exercise.

Hey, I’m not complaining about the timeline result I got, by any means.
I’m just saying, there’s always room for improvement.

The next evening I paused before spraying, as I had done
the day before, and felt more deeply into the holiness of all the
bugs and cauliflower plants alike. This time I found the inci-
dence of bugs was nearly nonexistent, lower than it had been
before the infestations ever began.

This example of the cauliflowers may seem trivial (and I sup-
pose it is), but it does point toward a couple of very powerful
clues about the correct response to transgressive actions taken
by ‘enemies out there.’

One: Correctly aligned thought patterns that contain no
trace of enemy consciousness, even while in the midst of taking
physical action to stop aggressors
, bring infinitely more power-
ful results than taking those same actions while perceiving the
other as an enemy.

Herein lies the mystery, or the magic, or the miracle, or whatever
you want to call it, of taking appropriate action while refus-
ing to perceive enemies. Our own higher frequency, stemming
from our more closely aligned action, inevitably must result in
higher frequency outcomes than we could have ever imagined.

Like this one, for instance: As I was finishing with my cauli-
flower chores on that first day of more divinely aligned think-
ing, Steve arrived and remarked that all our tomato plants
seemed to have inexplicably grown about eighteen inches
taller overnight. On closer inspection I noticed they also ap-
peared to be laden with more than twice as many full-size to-
matoes as the day before.

After my second day of divinely aligned cauliflower spray-
ing, the same tomato plants were now heaving with still more
clusters of beautiful plump tomatoes. All told, our tomato har-
vest would now be more than triple the original yields.

In my experience, the knock-on effect of seeing more like
the Creator sees, brings all kinds of exponential, unlooked-
for miracles seemingly out of left field. This was no exception.

Thanks to this higher-frequency timeline, not only did my
cauliflowers thrive, but we would now be enjoying homemade
tomato pasta sauce all throughout the following year.

Which brings us to powerful point Number Two: Maybe this
is how the world gets healed of its many gaping wounds. May-
be this is how climate change is reversed. It seems to me this
lesson can be scaled up to include the world’s most seemingly
intractable issues. If we can take responsibility for the quality
of our own thoughts, mindfully aligning them with divinity
instead, every time we catch ourselves pointing fingers at the
enemies who got us into this mess—who knows.

Maybe that action alone would be enough to pop us into in-
crementally cleaner and healthier timelines. Dimensional pos-
sibilities where ocean plastic, or air pollution, or fracking has
never been a thing. Or at least, far less of a thing. And can you
imagine what other unexpectedly beautiful delights of Nature
might also exist in that somewhat-higher frequency timeline?

Or let’s take it even one step farther. Imagine, if you will,
dozens of people picking up trash on a beach (appropriate ac-
tion) all the while carefully seeing both the trash and those
who discarded it as divinely holy expressions of our shared
Source (appropriate perception). Imagine the potential ripple
effects created by this mindfully intentional combo platter of
divine alignment. Who knows what lovely, life-affirming time-
lines the planet might shift into, if such high-frequency behav-
ior became commonplace among us?

Do you doubt it’s possible? It’s impossible only if you say it
is. You’re a multi-dimensional spark of God-flame, kiddo. You
can do it. We all can.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

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Week 8 – Seeing Clearly

This year, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

Welcome to week eight of this free series. Settle into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


CHAPTER TWO

Seeing clearly

One night a number of years ago, I was sincerely asking to see
how God sees. I truly wanted to be able to look upon the world
I live in, and find it innocent and holy. But it wasn’t happening.
Not even a little bit. So I was praying, asking for some kind of
pointer that would help me make this shift of perception:

You know everything about me, God. My thoughts, my beliefs.
You’re there when I fart. You’ve seen me have sex. But I know
nothing about you. Give me a hint. Show me how you see things.
Help me know you better so I can see the world as you do.

Cute, right? Like I said, it was a long time ago. Anyway, I
went to bed after that and slept as I normally would, dreaming
about nothing in particular. But I woke in the early morning
with a strong sense I was in the presence of a huge intelligence
of some kind.

It was vast, deep and immeasurably powerful. I wasn’t
alarmed by its size or power, because it felt thoroughly benign.
More than just benign—it was wholly suffused with the inno-
cent sweetness and radiantly gentle spotlessness of God. This
being, I realized, was Love and Light incarnate. And because
it was all of these magnificent things, I could feel within my
own mind-body-energy field that I was all of these things, too.

Yet I was puzzled. I felt I really ought to recognize this mas-
sive entity. It seemed so famous, so well known. I couldn’t
quite place it. Slowly the realization dawned:

Oh. My. God. This is the devil.

I was witnessing Satan—as viewed through a
completely pristine mind. Satan, seen from God’s perspective.

I’d been asking to see how God sees. This is how God sees.
This is what unconditional Love-Light is. Everything is made
of God, which means everything is witnessed and experi-
enced by God AS God. Everything is recognized as the pristine
perfection it really is in truth, no matter what sort of havoc
that perfection may be busy inflicting upon the world. Small
wonder I was having such a hard time, trying to embrace this
whole Love-Light-Awareness thing, eh?

The lesson provides a useful illustration of our shared human
dilemma. If we want to know Light and Love as our own true
identity, we can’t be dabbling in exclusionary thinking. It’s all
or nothing; everybody or nobody. If we deny the divinity in
anyone or anything (no matter how badly they may behave),
we deny it in everyone and everything.

As if that prerequisite is not challenging enough, we have
yet another hurdle to consider. To experience Love and Light
as who we really are, we have to be on a similar wavelength to
it. We can’t be invested in fearful anxieties about the future, or
caught up in believing stories about our own unworthiness,
because those ideas all reside on a different, more knuckle-
dragging frequency level.

Only in the past few years have I come to appreciate the role
of energetic frequency and vibration, as it relates to spiritual
evolution. Unconditional Love and Light are extraordinarily
high frequencies, and if our mental-emotional activity is not
a reasonably good match to these frequencies, we haven’t a
prayer of knowing those transcendent states firsthand.

And yet life on this planet inspires pretty much every one
of us to work overtime, creating fearful defenses and limiting
stories about ourselves and each other. We worry and fret, we
judge and condemn. We fill our wounded hearts with fire
and ice, or other numbing agents. The inevitable result, is
that our personal wavelength rarely comes within spitting
distance of the extremely high-frequencies where divine
Love and Light reside.


If you are spiritually gifted or exceptionally lucky, your angelic
guides might now and then offer you peekaboo glimpses of
the mind-blowing beauty of your own true identity. For years
I fell into the category of the very lucky, an enthralled tourist
snapping pictures of my own magnificence from the safety of
the tour bus. Yet I could never seem to own what was being
shown to me. It was far too bright.

A visit to a heavenly tourist attraction is a wondrous gift
for anyone to experience. It’s not even slightly mandatory,
however, along the spiritual journey. I have also come to
realize it’s not remotely the same thing as experiencing our
own true Love-Light identity for real. I brought back only
postcards and souvenirs, when I visited via tour bus. But I
come back forever transformed by Love-Light itself, each
time I’m able to own it directly—even just a little bit—as
my true identity.

I bring this up only to point out how peekaboo glimpses differ
from authentic embodiment of Love-Light, because I myself didn’t
understand the difference for many years. I could never figure out
why my cherished collection of Polaroid Love-Light snapshots re-
fused to develop into fully embodied knowings of divine truth.

Now I realize, in order to give us these careful tastes of our
own divinity, our guides put up helpful screens and veils so we,
the lumpy, carbon-based physical entities we are, don’t burn
to a crisp in the presence of our own glory. It’s a kindness, in
other words. And (despite the impatience of eager tourists like
me) it’s very necessary, until it isn’t.

If Love and Light were forced upon any aspect of the self
that actively doesn’t want them, or isn’t ready for them, an epic
clash of wavelengths would ensue. Love and Light would then
be experienced as a brutal spotlight interrogation at best, and
incineration at worst.

And this is why Love-Light-Awareness waits so patiently to
be authentically invited in. Not just by the conscious top ten
percent of your ego iceberg, but by the other ninety as well.
The cellular you, the physical you, is the determined secret
keeper on your behalf. It would shriek with pain and terror if
confronted prematurely with the unlimited, unflinching Light
of divine truth. And Love-Light-Awareness wishes always and
only to be kind.

Love and Light can only be fully embodied by an awak-
ened, undefended heart, powered by the high-wattage energy
field that is part and parcel of this divine state of being. Yet life
on Earth does not exactly seem to lend itself to this kind of
extreme attainment.

So is the Love-Light divinity deck purposely stacked against us?
I don’t know. Maybe.

These days, I prefer to regard life on Earth as an epic virtual
reality game. Each time we start from zero, with no memory
of earlier wins or losses. The point of the game seems to be to
load ourselves up with as many obstacles as possible, and then
see how long it takes to remember ourselves as God.

From the standpoint of a divine being (which you are), there
would be no advantage in remembering yourself too easily.
Where’s the fun in a game in which every roll of the dice pre-
dictably brings you closer to your guaranteed win?

More to the point, if our reason for being is to experience as
much as we can on behalf of the Absolute, we will set up the
game to be as nail-bitingly interesting as possible. Will she re-
lease her crippling fear of intimacy? Will he find peace within
the morass of alcohol addiction? Success is never certain, from
our limited perspective anyway. And that’s what makes it such
a kickass game.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

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Week 7 – God and Creation

This year, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

Welcome to week seven of this free series. Settle into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


God and Creation

My new, insider relationship with the subterranean self was
the first and most obvious change to my spiritual worldview.

Yet it wasn’t only this softened attitude toward the egoic self that characterized my gentler, post-map landscape. I also found myself embracing a different sense of God, and the nature of creation. A different sense of why we’re here.

I didn’t actively go looking for a replacement definition of
God, or a different creation story. This wasn’t an intellectual
decision; it was done on my behalf, through divine grace. It
forms part of the new navigation system, which arose from the
spacious ground of not-knowing.

The ground of not-knowing, allows room for a perfectly
customized, divinely-inspired journey to unfold—one that’s
exactly right for each individual journeyer. It’s what happens
when you clear the slate of what you think you know, and instead
let your higher self reconfigure your spiritual navigation system.

The puzzle pieces that make up your perfect spiritual
worldview may or may not be the same ones as mine. They will
be the ones that lead swiftly and gently to your own liberation.

The customized spiritual navigation system I describe
throughout this book has been perfect for my own evolution.
It has lifted me beyond my stuck places with ease and grace.
That doesn’t mean my spiritual worldview is universally better.
It’s just what’s been perfect for me.

My revised sense about God and creation arrived without fanfare; these particular puzzle pieces quietly inserted themselves
into my worldview over the last couple of years, and for me
they’re a good fit. They form the living foundation for much of
what has occurred since.

I’ll explain the update with a brief review:

When non-dual teachings speak about God, the infinite mystery of pure void is what they’re referring to. Pure void is sometimes described as infinite, eternal emptiness. Which, paradoxically, brims with the latent potential for all-that-is.

‘The Absolute’ is another, possibly less confusing label for it.

This great emptiness-in-fullness can’t experience itself. It cannot stand apart from itself, to perceive or experience anything.

But not everybody agrees on this ‘prior to all that is-ness’
as the definition of the word ‘God.’ Not everybody traces God
that far back. And this is where creation comes into play.

Here is the creation story I find resonant at this time:

The Absolute chooses to experience its own great infinity. To facilitate this, a ‘deputy’ of sorts arises out of the emptiness-fullness, and is tasked with carrying out this choice. The deputy is itself made out of three intertwined raw materials of divinity. These are Love, Light and conscious Awareness.

Employing these same three raw materials as fundamental building blocks of creation (because no other raw materials exist), this deputy creates all-that-is. All that can ever be.

Creation is the deputy’s principal function, therefore the deputy can accurately be called the Creator. And the Creator is what many people, not surprisingly, think of as God. It’s what I think of as God.

The word ‘Source’ can also apply here. The deputy is the
Source of all that exists. Or you could just refer to the deputy
by its component parts: Love-Light-Awareness.

(A lumpier title, but technically accurate. Although I suppose it’s a little like saying, ‘Please pass the bottle of tomato-vinegar-spices,’ when you really mean ketchup.)

From here on in, I’ll be using the word ‘God’ interchangeably with ‘Creator’ or ‘Source,’ to mean the aforementioned deputy facilitator of the Absolute.

And as you’ll see throughout this book, the creation story described above (we are created so the Absolute can experience itself) is woven deeply throughout my own journey of the past couple of years.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

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Week 6 – A High Speed Chase Seen Through Backward Binoculars

For the rest of this year and most of the next, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

Welcome to week six of this free series. Go ahead and settle into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice to drink, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


A high speed chase seen through backward binoculars

I was being taught to step away from my own personal view-
point with good reason. For years I’d been exploring the
theme of enemy consciousness (and how to live beyond it),
because the flip side of that tug ‘o war is true inner peace.

I was learning that an enemy is only an enemy, because I
have perceived it as such. But the human perceptual view-
point is a freaky thing. It was slowly dawning on me that I
probably shouldn’t have been relying on it as an advisor in
the first place.

A human being’s perceptual lens can never be trusted as an
accurate reflection of the way things really are. Your percep-
tion and mine are not clear, factual representations of what
we see. They’re made up of our own highly personal sets of
prior associations.

Some of these associations are cultural or religious, others
are supplied by the society we live in. Any of these may give
the illusion of common ground with those who seem to share
our general view. Education and family influences (or lack
thereof) also play big roles in shaping perception.

Our own personal prior historical experiences, paired with this mélange
of tangled associations, inherited assumptions and unexam-
ined group expectations forms the lens through which we in-
terpret everything we see. It’s all relative, and no interpretation
is ever truly accurate.

To illustrate how it works, here’s a small example of my own
from many years back:

I was driving through South Los Angeles one day with a school
friend I hadn’t seen in ages. We had
just been to a trade show together, and were on our way to
another appointment someplace deep in the garment district.

In that section of the city several freeways converge in a complex
series of cloverleaf curves, the on and off ramps weaving under
and over each other in every direction. It takes a fair amount of
lane merging to get where you need to go. Jabbering excitedly
with my friend about all the changes in our lives since we’d last
seen each other, I barely noticed what I was doing.

Having made it safely onto our chosen freeway, a few min-
utes went by before my friend observed, ‘Um, there’s a guy
who’s been driving alongside us for a while now, and he keeps
looking in the window at you.’

‘Really?’ I asked, my eyes on the unpredictable antics of driv-
ers in front and behind me, ‘What do you think he wants?’
‘I dunno,’ she said. ‘But he looks pretty mad.’

I felt a cold stab of fear. Partly because my own prior associations
had long ago led me to the conclusion that other peoples’ anger
was unsafe, and I should always tap dance my way to a state of
mutually agreed upon harmony whenever possible.

And partly because of another prior association: This was Los Angeles,
famous around the world for the occasionally lethal effects of road
rage. I prayed the guy wasn’t carrying a baseball bat or a gun.

I stole a peek over at him. A very dark skinned man of pow-
erful build glared back at me. Oh man. Oh shit. I had no idea
why he was mad at me, but prior societal associations of mine
made his anger a little bit extra-frightening.

I grew up in an economically depressed Rust Belt town in the
1970s, where racial tensions ran high. My junior high school
years in particular saw semi-regular flashpoints of pent-up
student frustration, the racial lines often clearly drawn. I never
got beat up, back then or ever. But sparks and fists flew all
around me with a certain amount of regularity.

Decades later, on this Los Angeles freeway, I couldn’t help
but filter an encounter with this angry stranger through that
junior high school lens. It was automatic; it’s how our minds
process new information.

I made that unconscious linkage instantly, and promptly
broke out in a nervous sweat. For the
next ten miles his car kept pace with mine while I steadfastly
refused to look at him, fervently hoping he would get bored
and go away. He didn’t.

At last I reached my exit, dismayed to see he was taking
it, too. He followed behind me for another ten minutes as I
made my way to our destination. I pulled into the parking lot
and he brought his car to a screeching halt next to mine. We
got out of our cars and stood face to face, him shaking with
rage, me with fear.

I braced myself. This was many years before I knew anything
about empathic tendencies and what it means to feel other
peoples’ feelings; all I knew was, his anger tore into me like a
hundred knives hurled straight into my body. But there was
something else too, something besides outward-directed rage.
And in a peculiar way it hurt even more.

‘You cut me off,’ he snarled. ‘Like I wasn’t even there.’

Like I wasn’t even there. That was it. A focused pinpoint of
white-hot searing torment, aimed with surgical precision not
at me, but at himself. Although I had no words to describe the
phenomenon back then, I felt his inner pain and frustration
for one blinding instant as if they were mine.

His momentary jolt of fear as I’d cut him off on the freeway
(a normal reaction to being put in danger), had quickly turned
to boiling fury at my apparent cavalier disregard for his inher-
ent right to exist. (Instant linkage.) How dare I think his life
was worthless?

I listened quietly, looking into his eyes as he spoke. When
it was my turn to talk, I apologized humbly for my error, ex-
plaining truthfully I never even saw his car. It must’ve been in
my blind spot, and I wasn’t paying nearly enough attention to
what I was doing, I admitted. I was genuinely sorry for taking
him so many miles out of his way just to speak with me, and
I said so.

He nodded, processing this new information. As I watched
his face, I could see it was almost as if his inner GPS unit had
originally taken him down a well-worn route marked
‘Favorites.’ But now it was recalculating an entirely different
pre-programmed route. A route called ‘Lady Drivers.’ This
road held no rage, just an exasperated handful of patronizing
gender assumptions. He sighed heavily and turned away.

‘See that you don’t do it again,’ he instructed almost offhand-
edly over his shoulder, shaking his head with a sour grimace as
he pointed his car back in the direction he had come.


My point here is not to suggest his prior experiences of life
weren’t real. Or that his conclusions about his experiences
weren’t accurate. Of course they were. They were valid and
real to him, as my prior experiences were valid and real to me.

It’s the way we each pasted those historical assumptions onto
our present circumstance that highlights just how unreliable
and arbitrary the personal perceptual lens really is.

By seeing through the lenses of our separate histories, we each brought
wildly divergent and completely irrelevant ideas to the in-
teraction. And because we believed what our separate lenses
showed us, we each perceived ourselves as the potential victim
of the other one’s intentions.

It’s the inner satellite navigation system itself that can’t be
trusted. It can never be relied upon to give an accurate read-
ing. By analyzing its millions of data points to formulate its
conclusions, that very process guarantees every road it takes
us down will be faulty.

Our inner GPS unit does its very best to
help us navigate our world, bless it. But in truth, all of its data
points are meaningless. And the destinations even more so.

Learning to take the personal point of view with a large grain
of salt is fundamental to spiritual and emotional freedom.
Strangely enough, I didn’t fully recognize the deeply flawed
nature of my own (or anyone else’s) personal point of view,
until my softened stance toward the ego self helped me notice
firsthand the fallibility of its perceptual lens. The egoic lens
just isn’t built for accuracy.

I realized then that I am endowed with a personal viewpoint,
simply because that’s what allows me a sense of being a sepa-
rate personal self. Not because there’s anything inherently true
or right in my way of seeing anything. So my egoic lens isn’t
worth a lot. And honestly, that personal self business? It ain’t
what it’s cracked up to be.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

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Week 5 – My Tiny Guru

For the rest of this year and most of the next, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

Welcome to week five of this free series. Go ahead and settle into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice to drink, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


Earlier I was sure of so many things, now I am sure of nothing.
But I feel that I have lost nothing by not knowing, because all my
knowledge was false.
~ Nisargadatta Maharaj

CHAPTER ONE

My tiny guru

One day last summer, fresh out of the shower I sat down to
meditate. I began by asking the question: What it would take
for me to Love humanity?
Not in the intellectual abstract, but,
y’know, for real.

Because let’s face it. We suck, right? We’re a tough bunch
to Love. And yet many times in meditation, I had experienced
firsthand the God-self-ness of human beings, individually and
collectively. I had felt our divine Light, our timeless innocence.
Where’s the disconnect, I wondered? How do I experience this
purity of self and other in my daily life?

Just then an incredibly persistent housefly began buzzing
and buzzing around me, landing periodically to tickle its way
across my bare arms or zip back and forth around my wet
hair. I smiled and acknowledged its God self, which of course
meant nothing at all to the fly. He knew what he was. He was
also thirsty and I was a bountiful fountain of recently showered moisture.

No amount of shooing had any effect at all. I tried slip-
ping into conscious Awareness and meditating on the in-
convenience of his behavior, seeing the behavior itself as
God. Seeing my own mild annoyance as God. It’s all true of
course, but the buzz-tickle-stop, buzz-buzz-stop-tickle was
so random it would have taken a meditator far more master-
ful than I to manage it.

And yet I had long since realized everything arises as an op-
portunity to shepherd me along my path of awakening. So I
checked in with my higher self: Is there a lesson here? Does this
fly have something to teach me?

As if in answer, the fly turned and flew straight at the tip of
my nose—bop!—with a force that startled both of us. Okay, I’ll
take that as a yes. What am I missing? What’s the lesson?

I paused to allow an answer to arise from the depths of divine
inner wisdom.

I was invited to notice that greater vision, greater Light and
greater Love are automatically limited by the habitual action
of seeing through the lens of the personal self. I was viewing
things from my own perspective. (Of course! Who wouldn’t?)
That perspective naturally included my own needs and wants:
I wanted to meditate. Meditation was important to me. It’s
what I do, it’s who I am.

Yet this fly, this outsider, was ruining my meditation because
its own needs and wants were, of course, its primary concern.
Were my needs and wants actually more important? Or were
they just more important to me?

I wasn’t really wondering whether flies should be accorded
equal rights. I was asking this question to investigate my own
egoic assumptions about life. I was beginning to notice my
own agenda was not necessarily more important than any-
body else’s. It just felt more important because it was mine.

This was a question I’d pondered before, most recently while
tending my garden. I was the one growing the veg at great effort
and expense. What was the right attitude to take toward the
beings who were busy decimating my lettuce crop? I couldn’t
bear the thought of waging war; that was the complete antith-
esis of where I wanted to be in my life. It was just too damn
painful to cultivate enemies anymore.

I decided I valued inner peace more than I did my lettuce.
I also valued peace more than I valued my ingrained assump-
tion that my lettuce belongs to me. So I blessed these slimy
little creatures, then plucked them off my leafy greens (ick)
and repatriated them to the other end of the garden. They
came back, and back, and back again of course, until no let-
tuce remained.

Bugs, birds, rodents, slugs. I was sort of willing to entertain
the idea that I was not automatically entitled to harvest what
I grew. And since all of Nature seemed to passionately and
emphatically agree with that conclusion, I figured there must
have been a lesson in there somewhere. But that was as far as
I’d gotten on this particular question.

So this new bit of wisdom was highly pertinent to my daily
life at this time. Although I had already been experimentally
looking outside my me-centric ideas about life, it was still me
doing the looking. The ‘me’ self was chewing over the idea of
stepping outside the viewpoint of the ‘me’ self, in other words.
I hadn’t thought to examine the fact that the ‘me’ lens itself is
the limiter of wisdom.

The higher self ’s implied suggestion was a delicate one: Why
not play around with viewing the situation from beyond the
limiting lens of the personal self?

I realized this exploration
would offer not only an answer to the housefly-meditation
thing and even the garden pest conundrum, but an answer to
the question I had posed at the start of the meditation. Where
was the disconnect between the recognition of God in human-
ity I experienced during meditation, and the ability to apply
that knowing to the actual human beings we are?

I immediately checked in with the personal ‘me’ self. Gone
are the days when I would take a unilateral battering ram to
its defenses in the name of spiritual progress. I was only too
aware this suggestion of stepping outside the personal local-
ized viewpoint, would strike at the very heart and purpose of
the personal self. If I wasn’t viewing the world through its sub-
terranean lens, then what exactly was its job description?

What do you think, I asked. Would you be willing to allow this
exploration, to help me understand better?

The fly’s buzz-tickle-buzz-buzz antics had become too much
at this point. I moved into the bedroom and closed the door.
When I checked in again for the subterranean self ’s response,
I realized I was feeling no inner resistance of any kind. It had
quietly backed away, leaving me free to explore outside its usu-
al boundaries. I was overcome with a wave of deep admiration
and gratitude for the subterranean self ’s bravery and (ironi-
cally) its selflessness.

I’d been working patiently and steadfastly with the subterra-
nean self for several months by this point. It had taken quite
a while to build mutual trust and respect between us. Even
though I had dropped all my jaundiced ideas about the intrin-
sically destructive motivations of the subterranean self before
I approached it, I found myself unable at first to extend it my
authentic trust, affection or respect. Even though I wanted
to.

Heartbreakingly, for its part, the subterranean self seemed
far more eager to trust in me, far more willing to give me the
benefit of the doubt than I could offer it in return. Progress,
genuinely desired on both sides, was steady but painfully slow
and awkward at first.

I’ll include here a representative example of my early at-
tempts to reach out humbly and sincerely to this aspect of the
self, just to give you some idea of the collaboration’s rocky be-
ginnings. I was not in the general habit of writing letters to the
subterranean self, but I found myself doing so as I sat down to
pen this diary entry.

January 5, 2018
Oh, sweetheart. Can I call you that? I so want to be able to offer
you my love. But when I try it feels fake, to you and me both.
And I want to trust you deeply and completely, because I know
you deserve it. But no matter how hard I try, something within
us (within me) just won’t go there.

It’s tricky. On the one hand I know in my heart the teachings
about you are correct. You do block out true peace. And that
hurts. How can I trust deeply in anything that blocks out God?
But I also know you’re not to be blamed for that. I know you’re
not evil. I don’t know how I know, but I do.

Maybe my feelings will change as I get to know you better. In
the meantime, instead of love or trust, I’ll offer you everything I
can right now. My honesty. My loyalty. I’m here no matter what.
I want to learn what you truly are. I don’t know why you do the
things you do, but I’m interested. Whatever you want to share
with me, I’d be honored to learn. So let’s start with that and see
where it takes us. Okay?

On this sunny summer day six months later, as I found myself
preparing to meditate from outside the personal viewpoint,
my relationship with the subterranean self was already one of
ever-deepening trust and mutual respect. By this time we were
routinely working together with the divine Light of Aware-
ness, and could clearly feel the rapidly growing inner illumi-
nation, clarity and wisdom that is a natural hallmark of such a
divine partnership.

Having taken refuge from the persistent fly behind the closed
door of the bedroom, I sat and prepared for meditation. Sinking
deeply into present moment Awareness, I marveled at how re-
markably easy it felt to step completely away from any sense of
personal viewpoint. For the first time I could ever recall (other
than during awakenings), the ‘me’ point of consciousness held
no gravitational pull.

Since the ‘me’ perspective was temporarily deactivated, I
took advantage of this gift by focusing on the truth of what
is. What does truth feel like? I wondered. How does it feel to see
humanity as the Creator sees us?

I tuned into the human collective. Without a personal point
of view I found I was automatically free of my own assump-
tions, opinions, beliefs, judgments and even my innate prefer-
ences. None of that was relevant. None of it held any kind of
energetic charge. I could sense my vision had become far less
restricted than usual; I was seeing from a higher perspective.

As I brought the Light of Awareness inside the collective sea of
humanity, I first felt it as a surging, clashing, chaotic sea of move-
ment and change. Yet there was nothing alarming or negative
about it. Resting here, I was startled to discover this turbulent
sea was actually made of ecstatic joy. I was made of ecstatic joy.

I sank in deeper, beyond the surface level of constant move-
ment, and settled at last into deep stillness. And in this hushed
and holy stillness, this sacred foundation of our shared
humanity, I felt our true nature. It was made of ecstatic peace.

That was it. That’s what I had been missing. God is the col-
lective perfection of all-that-is, exactly as it is. It’s the ecstasy of
our human perfection, exactly as we are right now.

I just wasn’t on a high enough wavelength to experience it, until I stepped
outside the localized viewpoint of the individual self. Until,
you might say, my heartfelt desire to know God became (tem-
porarily) stronger than the desire to see things my own way.

And yes. This new knowing of our collective perfection was
still happening only in meditation, not in daily life. What can
I tell you. Mine has been a gradual ascension; so gradual, my
ears don’t even pop.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

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Week 4 – The Half-Acre I Call Home

For the rest of this year and most of the next, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

Welcome to week four of this free series. Go ahead and settle into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice to drink, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


What follows is a little more in-depth backstory explanation,
leading up to that decision to turn away from everything I
thought I knew. Because the decision itself was a pretty big
deal. It felt radical.

To abandon all spiritual teachings and
concepts felt like I was trespassing upon a secret forbidden
zone. The very idea of stepping beyond all known bounda-
ries seemed like a violation of the rules, somehow. Somebody
else might find such a thing exciting, but I’d never been the
rule-breaking type; I did it only as a highly uncomfortable
last resort.

Here then, is a brief rewind. A short history of my spiritual
journey, and how it brought me to this choice point.

Thirty-something years ago I began my first spiritual practice
as a way to fix my dysfunctional life and livelihood. I did it
because I wanted to feel better. Career, relationships, finances,
health, housing and just about everything else was in serious
need of cleanup. If my life had been a parcel of land, you could
have likened it back then to a stagnant, polluted swamp.

I worked hard in those first twenty years of diligent daily
practice. As a result the muck and stink of the swampland
slowly receded, leaving nutrient-rich soil in its place. Each
time a newly fertile bit of soil revealed itself, I rushed in to
plant beautiful flowers in tidy rows. Over the years my
patch of land gradually transformed into a rather damn
fine good-looking garden. The envy of many other would-
be gardeners, in fact.

My dysfunctional relationships had become functional;
serious illness had reversed itself completely; and I’d gradually
gone from deep debt to savings in the bank. I had a good mar-
riage to a good guy. A good career with good clients. A good
house in a good town. Good friends. It was all very, very good,
and I was deeply grateful for all that goodness. But. And.

I started to notice, no matter how carefully I weeded the un-
wanted debris and planted nicer things in its place, the ground
underneath my little half-acre didn’t feel good. Despite the
lifelong desire for peace, inside I was anything but peaceful.

This had always been the case, of course. But so many more
pressing things had been wrong with my life, the inner unease
had barely registered. Now that the landscape was green and
skies were patchy blue, I became unbearably aware of my un-
comfortable inner condition.

Closer examination revealed my attractively landscaped gar-
den was perched atop an abandoned mine, the tunnels dark
and forbidding, the entrance long since caved in and sealed
tight. It was then I realized I could pretty up the garden until
the end of time, but my subterranean regions would remain
largely untouched by that effort.

Naturally I assumed the tunnels and their unknown contents
were the cause of my pain. If I could just get rid of them I’d be
happy. Over the following decade, I tried to pry the tunnels
open, flooding them with the healing Light of divinity until
they cried ‘Uncle.’ Or sometimes I cajoled, offering sweet-talk
and patient reasoning along with my heavenly searchlights.

Other times I lost patience, and went at the mine’s entrance
with a non-dual battering ram instead. Nothing worked.
Damn you, abandoned mine. Can’t you see I want to fix you?
Well, maybe not fix you. I want you gone, because you’re block-
ing my access to enlightenment. Why won’t you go away, so I can
know inner peace?

No response. (Unless, of course, ‘crickets’ counts as a re-
sponse.) For years, I nevertheless remained grimly deter-
mined to unleash the bulldozers, for an extreme makeover on
my underground landscape. I vowed I would not stop until my
garden smelled pretty inside and out.

Yet by and large, this collection of shadowy tunnels remained
stubbornly unknowable and utterly immovable. The harder I
tried to eliminate the entire subterranean mine—or better yet,
bypass it with a jaunty wave, my heavenly jetpack propelling
me up, up, up beyond the clouds—the more grimly it dug in.

It wasn’t interested in my little epiphanies and awakenings. It
wasn’t impressed with my spiritual illuminations in the least.
Our rejection, it seemed, was mutual.


Enlightenment per se had never been my intended destination
in those early landscaping days. A desire for awakened con-
sciousness never even made it onto my radar screen, let alone
my metaphysical bucket list, during the first twenty years of
spiritual practice.

As far as I knew, a quest for enlightenment looked like that
old cliché parodied in New Yorker cartoons. The cross-legged
guru on a mountaintop, and the disheveled climber who ar-
rives at long last to ask the guru his Big Burning Question:
What is the meaning of life?

Um, right. I was no existential rock climber. Who cared what
the meaning of life was? I just wanted to feel better. I had no
concept of what we were supposed to be awakening from, or
why enlightenment was even a thing. (Or a no-thing.) I just
knew way down deep in my bones, somewhere, somehow it
was possible to feel lasting peace. And that’s what I was after.

It wasn’t until my first brief ass-kick of a spiritual awaken-
ing in 2005 at the age of forty-seven, that I got an actual taste
of that peace. It was transcendent. Big as the entire universe.

My life restructured itself completely in its aftermath, this time
with the map oriented firmly ‘True North,’ toward the direc-
tion I assumed enlightenment would be found.

Big changes had come in the powerful aftermath of that awak-
ening. Over the next few years one good marriage ended, and
another good marriage began. One good life in a beautiful
Californian beach town was eventually traded for another
good life in a beautiful English hamlet. It seemed, at first, like a
huge evolutionary leap forward into divine trust. And in some
ways it was. Yet deep beneath the surface, nothing changed.
The abandoned mine and I remained at a stalemate.

It was clear this powerful subterranean intelligence wasn’t going
to budge if it didn’t want to. Nor was it going to let me go any-
where without it. Inner peace simply wouldn’t happen without
its consent. I was the one, in the end, who cried ‘Uncle.’

So I finally dropped all my ‘spiritually correct’ certainties. I
dropped my arrogance. I dropped everything I thought I knew
about maps, and tunnels and everything else. I let go of my
withering judgment of this stubborn subterranean self, and
took a closer look, this time with fresh eyes. Was it possible
nothing about this old mine needed fixing? What if I was only
seeing it incorrectly?

Setting aside all my ingrained assumptions, I began to com-
prehend at last the fundamental mistake I’d been making all
along. This old abandoned mine was…mine. Maybe it was
time to reclaim it. To treat it as something valuable, something
dear to me. Maybe even offer it some long overdue respect.

For the first time I approached the tunnels and their mys-
teriously alive contents with complete humility. I stood at the
mine’s metaphorical entrance and quietly knocked. I asked to
be allowed in, as a student who knew nothing.

I reached out to this much-maligned aspect of the self, even
though I had long believed its sole desire was to deprive me of
peace. I became genuinely curious to know more about it, to
understand life from its subterranean point of view. With this
change of attitude, I found my wish readily granted. Knock-
ing on that symbolic door with full trust and an open heart, I
asked for, and received, permission to come home.

Who knew such a simple shift would allow a breathtaking
world of miracles to unfold? In equal partnership with all as-
pects of my self—from the very highest to the lowest—I soon
discovered this reclaimed mine of mine offered an unlimited
motherlode of inner exploration. And there was gold in there.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

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Week 3 – The Evil Genius

For the rest of this year and most of the next, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

Welcome to week three of this free series. Go ahead and get settled into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice to drink, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


The Evil Genius

I didn’t turn toward the inner foot-dragger comfortably or
easily. Three decades of spiritual training had taught me to dis-
miss or overpower this reluctant subterranean self. The picture
painted of this inner self by so many spiritual teachings was
anything but flattering. Traditionally, most have considered
this aspect of the self to be something of an evil genius, hell-
bent on keeping us from knowing our own inherent divinity.
All worldly suffering is blamed on it.

But here’s the thing. For me personally, this kind of training
didn’t seem to fit my skill set. Try as I might, thirty-something
years of hard effort brought little success in dominating or dis-
mantling this stubborn portion of the self. Plenty of other nice
things changed dramatically along the way, as a result of all the
hard labor. But never that.

Yet that had long been my one great desire. To know my
own inherent divinity. To radiate peace from within. But if
these spiritual lineages were to be believed, I could never hope
to know true peace as long as the evil inner genius was alive
and functioning. I should starve it, they counseled. I should kill
it. Only then could I be happy
. Except in my case, the starvation
diet simply didn’t work. I was clearly outmatched.

Nothing I tried dislodged the evil genius from its core seat
of power. Consequently, I couldn’t seem to get anywhere near
my desired destination of transcendent inner peace. In fact,
every step I took in the direction of peace seemed to lead me
father from it. Thirty-odd years into this journey, it finally oc-
curred to me I was thoroughly lost—with no idea which direc-
tion might lead toward authentic peace.

For the first time ever, I stopped to take honest stock of my
spiritual journey as a whole. If not toward inner peace (which
at this point was clearly not happening), where was I hoping
my path would take me? How, exactly, did my spiritual life,
with its transcendent meditation practices and brilliant little
awakenings, translate into my actual daily life—like, y’know,
after the meditation was over?

As I launched into each day, was I feeling ever-greater inner
fulfillment? Ever-increasing appreciation for life itself? Was I
growing steadily more compassionate in my attitude toward
humanity and its foibles? No? Okay, well was I at least becom-
ing more gently accepting of my own imperfections? Was I in-
creasingly happy just to be me? Uh. Not really. Not that either.


So then what, I asked myself with a certain amount of exasper-
ation, was this all-consuming spiritual journey actually about?

It was a pivotal question. In the unanswering silence that
followed, I gave up trying to be my own navigator. I dropped
my map and surrendered into the lostness that engulfed me.

Like most forms of spiritual surrender, this one brought with
it the immediate seeds of salvation, although I certainly didn’t
recognize that at the time. I didn’t even think of it as surren-
der; I was merely admitting the totality of my failure, because
it could no longer be denied.

I gave up control of the map—of all maps, now and forever.
In my hands, I now realized, the fricken things were useless
anyway. So I set aside all my training and everything I’d ever
learned, along with all my preconceived judgments and ideas
about what my spiritual path was supposed to look like. And
I let divinity reconstruct my navigation device on my behalf.


My attitude toward the ego self has transformed completely
over the past two years. It has become abundantly clear to me
it isn’t evil in the least—even as I have also come to recog-
nize just how correct all those established teachings really are,
when they speak of its inherent God-blocking properties.

The egoic perceptual lens is unquestionably the source of all suf-
fering. Yet this aspect of the self can’t help being what it is, and
it believes its job is to keep us safe, no matter what. It does its
best. For me, the appropriate response to its efforts is compas-
sion for our shared plight.

This non-adversarial attitude has made it possible for me to
work very powerfully with both the subterranean egoic self
and the higher divine self. In this divinely led partnership,
much has come to light. For one thing, I’ve been shown time
and again that the unconscious mind is capable of far more
responsiveness than is generally assumed.

Even if it is looping old patterns of pain over and over again,
reliving its traumas in what seems a mindless or unconscious
way, the simple introduction of my conscious awareness, my
loving intention, was all it took to gently awaken this subterra-
nean region to itself. You’ll see some examples of what I mean,
later on.

In exploring this part of the self, I’ve come to recognize there
is great purpose, perhaps even great nobility in its function.
The unconscious faithfully carries many heavy burdens on our
behalf. Part of the spiritual maturation process, as I see it, is to
learn how to help lighten that load.

I feel the whole idea of the ego could use a radical rethink-
ing. I used to give lectures in which I sometimes worked with
‘The Ego Puppet,’ a googly-eyed sock puppet I wore on my
arm. I used it to demonstrate (even back then) the ego is not
a separate evil entity to be blamed for our ills, as it is so often
portrayed in spiritual circles. I conversed with the puppet at
length about its tireless efforts to do our own bidding. And
finally I pointed out, to great guffaws from my audiences, that
if you look carefully you will notice it’s always been your own
hand up the ego’s ass.

My little standup comedy routine had its roots in truth,
of course. The subterranean self is always trying, in its of-
ten head-scratchingly bass-ackward way, to do exactly what
we’re asking of it. To blame it for that is just shouting at
the mirror. But I’ve come to realize I had my depiction all
wrong. It is, in fact, the other way around. The subterra-
nean self is not a puppet at the end of my arm. I am the pup-
pet. And the subterranean self is the one who innocently
pulls my strings.

Consider this. The personality self is often likened to an ice-
berg, right? The top ten percent is thought to be the conscious
surface dweller, the one who answers when somebody calls
your name. The so-called ‘real you.’ And the rest of the iceberg
resides in the murky depths.

All our wounds, unresolved issues and traumas reside there as burning hotspots. Most of the time we don’t feel the burn directly; that’s what the ice is for.
We only get a rush of heat when somebody or something
pushes our buttons. Meaning, they’ve bumped into one or
more of those painful unresolved hotspots. And when a hot-
spot gets activated, it flinches. It can’t help itself.

This involuntary contraction automatically yanks on our
strings, causing us, the surface-dwelling personality to jerk
abruptly. Generally speaking it takes a fair amount of con-
sciousness and plenty of practice, to be able to interrupt that
knee-jerk reaction to an activated hotspot, because our strings
are wired directly to it.

The more unresolved hotspots our submerged iceberg con-
tains, the more reactive we are to inner and outer circum-
stances. Reactivity is pretty much the opposite end of the spec-
trum from true peace. When I finally realized true inner peace
wasn’t even slightly likely, it was because I saw this connection
between subterranean hotspots and my own surface-dwelling
experience of daily life. My iceberg contained deeply buried
hotspots galore. I couldn’t seem to get at them, but I sure as
hell felt their effects every time they flinched.

Eventually I came to the conclusion that the submerged
ninety percent is the one steering the ship—the one who is
actually having a life experience that answers to the name on
our birth certificate. The top ten percent is just the figurehead
bolted to the front of the boat.

It was with this humbling recognition that I, the gaudily paint-
ed figurehead on the Good Ship Carrie, finally relinquished all
delusional belief in my own independent power, authority and
rightful role as captain. I saw, finally, it’s never actually been
me at the helm.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

Find out more about The Fricken Map is Upside Down or pre-order now on Amazon.

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WEEK 2 – True Stories from the Big Chair

For the rest of this year and most of the next, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN , my latest book. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

You’re just in time for week two of this free series. So go ahead and get settled into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice to drink, and read on.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)


It’s all fun and games until somebody loses an ‘I’

With a toss of her head, the woman across from me flipped back the curtain of blond hair from her right eye. It was the sort of haircut designed for one-eyed living. The sort of haircut that would drive me mad if it were mine. She smiled warmly across the café table and regarded me with one-and-a-half eyes, her tresses falling right back into their preferred spot.

‘Who is the ‘me’ that would be driven mad by this haircut?’ She inquired patiently.

I sighed. It was my own damn fault. Steve and I had been wanting to broaden our circle of acquaintance. Genuinely fond as we were of the local villagers in our corner of the English countryside, we found ourselves forever feeling like exotic specimens, seemingly the only tree hugging, Source-loving, moonstruck metaphysical types in a ten mile radius. I guess we were craving the company of like-minded souls. People on a spiritual path.

Steve had recalled her name from the distant past, a woman who had once been active in the local non-dual Awareness community. With a little diligent research, I found her on LinkedIn. As a job title, her profile had stated ‘Living from pure Awareness’ or something like that. I had taken it to be an aspirational statement. As it turned out she really was living from pure non-dual Awareness, and had been for decades.

She was of that rare breed, one who suddenly becomes enlightened in the middle of doing algebra homework, or cleaning the litterbox, or whatever. One day she spontaneously woke up, and all sense of a personal self crumbled away forever into the void. She still went through the motions of living a life, raising a family, holding a job. Yet no person was present for any of it. Nobody was thinking, yet thought was occurring. Nobody was making peanut butter sandwiches for a toddler, yet sandwiches were made. Life, in the shape of a soft-spoken woman with an asymmetrical haircut, was happening all by itself.

This complete loss of personal identification is seemingly the holy grail of the non-dual path, and for many years she had obligingly worked with eager seekers who hoped to experience for themselves that same stateless state. Even though, as she would tirelessly point out to them, there is nothing to experience. Experience is happening, but there is no experiencer.

Not unreasonably, she had assumed Steve and I had invited her out for coffee because we wanted some relentless non-dual pointing toward truth. In fact we invited her out for coffee because we like coffee. After a good hour and a half of no conversational statement left unchallenged—Who is the ‘I’ that feels burned out? Burnout is simply happening—we thanked her and made our exit.

That was a few years ago. A couple of years before that, I’d had a brief taste of the very truth she’d been pointing toward so patiently. Back in April of 2014, while wandering aimlessly through the walled city of Old Jerusalem, in the midst of overwhelming heat and hubbub, it happened. Without warning, the personal self, the personal Carrie, suddenly vanished.

I realized ‘I’ didn’t exist. Had never existed. I was not the busy person immersed in highly important doings, that I had always assumed myself to be. I was, in fact, a figment of my own imagination. Surrounded by this noisy tourist throng, I knew myself only as an impartial and impersonal gap through which oceans of stunningly irrelevant Carrie-centric stuff had always poured forth.

My feelings, my worries, my passionate opinions about everything and nothing. My ideas about the spiritual path, and how it was supposed to unfold. None of it was real. None of it mattered. Only this majestic emptiness mattered. It stopped me in my tracks. I sobbed a little.

I’d been a seeker of enlightenment for a very long time. Some kind of dramatic shift in perception was exactly what I’d been aiming for, hoping for, all along. Not this kind of dramatic shift, mind you. This one sucked.

This one, adding to its other peculiarities, was only a partial shift of perception. One in which there was definitely still very much an experiencer. (Sorry, nice blond lady.) And the acute experience of sudden identity loss, coupled with the recognition that none of the things I cared about had any meaning at all—well, it was infinitely more disappointing than I’d bargained for

The spiritual seeker part of me was thrilled to bits nevertheless, because on some level I recognized this impersonal spaciousness could lay the groundwork for the permanent inner peace I’d always sought. This part of me lobbied hard for making spacious emptiness our new home base. But the vast majority of me wanted absolutely nothing to do with it.

As with so many other things in life, when it comes to accepting an awakening opportunity, the majority rules. So the brief recognition of untethered grandeur faded as quickly as it came. In its aftermath my response was typical of the way I tended to view such awakening moments: I was bitterly annoyed with the part of the self that refused to get with the program. The foot-dragging part that always seemed bent on spoiling my heavenly fun.

For most of the previous decade, my focus had been on teachings of ultimate truth, beyond the limiting world of form. Pure, pristine divinity was all I was interested in. I had no curiosity at all about that mysterious ‘silent majority,’ no desire whatsoever to find out why this inner self might be choosing to lag behind. I had no patience, understanding or compassion for life as viewed from its limited perspective. My spiritual roadmap simply didn’t allow for that.

Years passed before I recognized the actual truth being pointed to so insistently, in that stifling hot Israeli marketplace. The non-dual awakened moment wasn’t it. That moment of dis-identification with the personal ‘me’ was only acting as the pointer.

The reluctant inner self it pointed to, I eventually realized, was the unlikely key to just about everything. In an altogether unexpected way, the inner foot-dragger turned out to be at the very heart and soul of permanent peace.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

Find out more about The Fricken Map is Upside Down or pre-order now on Amazon.

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NEW! True Stories from the Big Chair

week-one-fricken-map

For the rest of this year and most of the next, I’ll be sharing a section each week from THE FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN , my latest book. From start to finish, from my heart to yours. From the big comfy chair.

You’re just in time for week one of this free series. Welcome! So get settled into your own comfy chair, grab a mug of something nice to drink, and read on, for the first two short pieces from the prelude.

(The following content is excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: Notes from a spiritual journey, by Carrie Triffet © Copyright 2019.)

This is the disclaimer bit

Here is the spot where I declare right up front that I am not a
psychology professional. Nor am I a medical professional. It’s
where I ask you to use your own sovereign wisdom to discern
whether the following book is right for you at this time.

This is also where I ask you to be kind to yourself. To use
common sense. You’re the one who knows you best. The fol-
lowing book contains, among other things, meditation exer-
cises to help you deep-dive into your own emotional, spiritual,
and physical freedom. It offers an approach that is extremely
gentle, yet undeniably badass. Is badass right for you at this
time? Only you can say.

I do know this much: If you’re currently on meds to sup-
press difficult thoughts, feelings or psychological conditions,
this is not the path for you right now. This book champions an
approach that is the opposite of suppression, and the journey
it proposes would therefore not be ideal for you to embark
upon at this time.

If you’re physically ill, see the healing arts professional you
normally would. Follow that practitioner’s advice. And enjoy
this book purely as a window on what can perhaps be. Use
discernment in all cases, please.

Perhaps this book can act as a jumping off point to help
you find great compassion and respect for the uniquely quirky,
massively inconvenient you that you know yourself to be.
Maybe the information contained in these pages will help you
relax into the gift of wholeness. My intention is that this trans-
mission (both energetic and written) will help spark within
you a firsthand knowing of the divine self within.

Disclaimers aside, please enjoy this book. May the adven-
ture of discovery be as wonderfully eye-opening and liberat-
ing for you as it has been for me.

Carrie Triffet
August 12, 2019

————————————————–

Between you and me

I would describe my spiritual evolution over the past three
decades as an ever-expanding (and occasionally contracting)
roller derby of living awareness: Messy. Circular. Highly enter-
taining, yet overall a bit brutal.

Maybe you can relate. Maybe now and then you, too, have
found yourself sidelined on the bench, nursing an injury dished
up with glee by one of your own inner self-saboteurs. And won-
dering why the evolutionary process seems so damn hard.

The short answer is, it doesn’t have to be. The long answer is,
it’s taken me thirty-three years to find the short answer.

As the title and cover suggest, I speak throughout this book
of a spiritual journey. As if we’re actually going from one
place to another, evolving from one state of consciousness
to another over a span of time, in order to reach spiritual
freedom. It isn’t true. The truth of spiritual freedom is always
right here-right now.

But realistically that’s not how most of us experience it. For
most of us, myself included, a certain amount of journeying
from here to there seems essential, before we can know eter-
nally timeless truth firsthand. For most of us there seems to be
stuff in the way that blocks this ‘right here-right now’ know-
ing. And even though it’s pretend stuff, it’s still in the way.

So although a time-based journey doesn’t actually lead to
true spiritual freedom, I’ve personally found the trip necessary
anyway. I wrote this book because my own recent explorations
not only fast-tracked my spiritual journey—they profoundly
cleared the way. As a result, that knowing of right here-right now
truth has sprung to life, and is starting to flourish within me.

This book is, among other things, a real-time chronicle
of my own rather astonishing journey of accelerated transfor-
mation and liberation. Like my other books, it also contains
a number of related teachings interspersed throughout.
Unlike any of my previous books, these teachings adhere
to no established spiritual dogma or philosophy. I’m a free
agent these days.

The transition away from established teachings wasn’t an
easy one. At the time, this process was slow, confusing and
awkward. Some pieces of the established teachings remained
radiantly relevant for me (and do to this day), but try as I
might, I simply could not seem to arrange those individual
puzzle pieces into a coherent picture; I couldn’t seem to expe-
rience for myself the living truth these teachings spoke of. And
yet I could be satisfied with nothing less.

The established teachings are brilliant, of course. And
some people undoubtedly find spiritual freedom by follow-
ing exactly where they lead. Ten years in, I had to admit I
wasn’t one of them.

Eventually I learned to keep only the puzzle pieces I found
helpful and resonant, along the way picking up other, seem-
ingly random pieces presented to me through divine in-
spiration. And thus gradually, piece by piece, I allowed the
(magnificently non-random) jigsaw puzzle of my spiritual
worldview—along with everything I thought I knew about my
self—to be radically reconfigured by a divinely Loving hand.

And funnily enough, I now find myself gazing out upon
the same magnificent vistas described so eloquently by those
established teachings. It’s only the route of travel I took that
seems different.


~ Carrie Triffet, excerpted from The Fricken Map is Upside Down: notes from a spiritual journey, © Copyright 2019

Don’t want to wait a whole year? Pre-order The Fricken Map is Upside Down on Amazon.

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THE ODD THING ABOUT EMOTIONAL FREEDOM

The proof copy of my book arrived yesterday from America. “You must be so excited!” said my friend Joanie, who happened to witness its arrival. I smiled and tore open the package. The book looked fine. Just the way it’s supposed to.

Was I excited? Not really.

I ought to be saying the opposite, I know. It’s what’s expected. But the truth is there’s no stress, no anticipation. No hoopla. It’s a curious feeling.

I’m not jaded by any means. It’s great to know this book is completed at last, and almost ready for its release. Deeply satisfying. Humbling to be part of its creation. But as for the rest of it…There’s nothing there. Just a sort of gentle, oozy river of pleasantness.

And I don’t mind. And I don’t mind, that I don’t mind.

Last evening I began to read through the book carefully. It’s my very last chance to make changes. At this point it’d be expensive to make revisions (and it would push back the release date). But if glaring errors are present, it’s good to know I have the option.

I’m finding no typos so far. No punctuation errors. But I do see a few small inconsistencies. Like for instance, I use the word ‘multi-dimensional’ probably a dozen times throughout the book. But I don’t always hyphenate it. Multidimensional, multi-dimensional. There’s no right or wrong here. But I’m supposed to pick a style and stick with it. And I didn’t.

And you know what? I don’t mind.

And that’s what caught my attention. Because I used to mind very much. I used to obsess about producing the highest quality, award-winningest books I possibly could. Impeccable graphic design? Yes, please. And a manuscript so gloss-polished you could see your reflection in it.

I paused and dialed into that prior version of myself. What was the motivation there? Why did I strive so damn hard for excellence?

Fear of attack, mostly. Excellence was my armor against criticism by others, real or imagined.

But the need for armor seems to have dropped away while I wasn’t looking. A whole bunch of things, in fact, seem to have dropped away while my attention was elsewhere. I’m allowed to be imperfect now. And so is everybody else. Which, honestly, is an incredible relief.

So now I’m in this strange in-between space. It’s not like excellence is a bad thing. Excellence, in and of itself, is wonderful and well worth aiming for. But I have no use for the armor anymore, so why bother? And that attitude feels mighty odd to a lifelong striver.

And that’s what’s odd about emotional freedom. It’s a wonderful relief to misplace the armor by the side of the road. Yet so much of recognizable daily life, as it turns out, was woven from a fabric made from fear of attack. When the fabric frays…well, things get a little weird. A little unrecognizable.

Who knows, maybe a desire to create highly polished excellence will come back at some point. Not as an expression of fear this time, but as a love letter to God.

And if it doesn’t? I really don’t mind.

The (almost perfect) FRICKEN MAP IS UPSIDE DOWN will soon be available for pre-order on Amazon. Official release date is 12-12-2019.

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