Awake in the World

Awake in the World

From Chrysalis to Butterfly: Facing Fear of Change

Last year, a friend invited me to see her monarchs. She grows milkweed (caterpillar food) and they gorge themselves on the plant. When the time is right the caterpillars begin to go through big transformation. They hook themselves onto a leaf, hang upside down and then spin a cocoon around their bodies. These cocoons hold the space for transformation. Over a period of days, the caterpillar, while safely enclosed, will become totally liquid before it is restructured into a beautiful monarch butterfly.  Going through a period of spiritual growth feels somewhat like this move from solid to liquid and then back again.


I wonder if the caterpillar feels any fear or hesitation? Does it worry or anticipate the change with excitement? Or does it lament leaving behind its worm life to become a new creature – and yet the same essence. The old part of it doesn’t entirely die, but it can never go back to that milkweed-eating caterpillar life.

As we move into this age of spiritual evolution, we too have opportunities to grow and transform in dramatic ways. We can create lives and a world that will reflect the beauty of our spirits – if we dare to open the heart and live from the deep place of the soul.

As someone who has faced many changes, I anticipate many more to come. But each time there’s a hesitation, a small fear, a holding on that brings a little bit of self-inflicted suffering. But each time I cross the bridge into the new life that’s waiting, it holds something better, greater expansion, more understanding and more love. It may be hard to leave some things behind, but the new place, the new form of life that appears has always been better, more vibrant, more deeply passionate, more joy-filled than before. If you’re in a chrysalis stage or about to move into one, I encourage you to embrace the stages of becoming as much as you love the being there. Every phase is a step that leads closer to wholeness, harmony and beauty.


Bio: Debra Moffitt is the award winning author of Awake in the World: 108 Practices to Live a Divinely Inspired Life. A visionary, dreamer and teacher, she’s devoted to nurturing the spiritual in everyday life. She leads workshops on spiritual practices at the Sophia Institute and other venues in the U.S. and Europe. Her mind/body/spirit articles, essays and stories appear in publications around the globe and were broadcast by BBC World Services Radio. She has spent over fifteen years practicing meditation, working with dreams and doing spiritual practices. More at and on Facebook at:

Previous Posts

Discovering You're Enough with a Leap of Perception
If you’re feeling hemmed in and know that there’s much more to you than what you’re currently experiencing but don’t know quite how to access it, then “Leap of Perception,” by Penney Peirce deserves a read. Penney wrote about working ...

posted 10:16:51am Sep. 18, 2013 | read full post »

How Joy Finds Us: Interview with Mark Nepo
The things we need arrive at the right time, and so it has been with Mark Nepo and his work. For those of us on a spiritual path, Mark’s writings possess the power to immediately move us into connection with a subtle and powerful awareness at ...

posted 9:42:16am Jul. 16, 2013 | read full post »

Hot Rituals to Celebrate the Summer Solstice
Can you feel the excitement in the air? The days are hot and sunny, and summer officially begins this week on June 21st. It’s the longest day and the shortest night in the Northern hemisphere. I love this day. In the South of France it’s ...

posted 7:27:32am Jun. 20, 2013 | read full post »

When Spirit Moves Us Out of Our Comfort Zone to Grow
Stepping onto the spiritual path isn’t all peace and roses. It pushes us into a place that moves us beyond our usual comfort zone. As we attune to the highest within us and listen to inner guidance, that guidance sometimes pushes us to try new ...

posted 8:04:01am Jun. 18, 2013 | read full post »

When Life Races By Replace Stress and Anxiety with Gentle Awareness
Even though I’m a seasoned traveler I still get stressed before trips. It’s not big jitters, just a general anxiety about: 1) Did I pack everything? 2) Will my travel connections go smoothly? And 3) What about the unexpected? Movement brings ...

posted 5:26:35am May. 28, 2013 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.