It all just came to me, and I realized the truth. My world changed, the heavens opened up, I saw the light. It was beautiful. I was beautiful.

It’s a mistaken story.

Transformation is not the euphoria that we think it is.

Realization can be exquisite. The alethic moment, when what was once hidden, is now revealed. What was once obscured, is now seen.


And then there is the consequence of insight—the unpredictable roll of a great change released upon a static body.

Transformation is not joyful insight. Transformation is what ensues from insight.

Transformation is the painful shedding of an old skin that no longer fits. Transformation is the shocking realization of looking in the mirror, day after day, and not recognizing the one who stares back at you.

Transformation is slow, and unpleasant.

Can you submit to the deepest change?

To transform is to go beyond your current form, your current shape. It is metamorphosis.

When you change shape, you hurt.

The old dies, the new grows.

Who you considered yourself to be, is not someone you can find anymore. What you assumed would always be true is no longer true.

“I’m struggling. I don’t really know where I am. It’s all so confusing. I’m anxious, and I don’t really know what’s going on. Nothing seems to be working anymore.”

It’s not working anymore, because the old things can’t work anymore, when you realize they’re old.

Transformation has this glittery idealistic reputation. A breakthrough at a weekend workshop. An epiphany during a heightened state. An intense moment of spiritual realization.

The reality of transformation is dark, confusing and painful.

Who are you?

You think you’re this one? Ewan. Who was born in England and likes pecans? You think that’s you?

You think you’re the eternal one? The one who was here before your parents were born? You think that’s you?

You are this. This moment. You are the culmination of a thousand lives, brought into this body by a thousand desires. You are this one, a cacophony of selves, loosely tied together with a narrative we call ego.

You are this one. The one who cannot choose his destiny. The one who does not choose her true name.

You are a thousand voices, channeled through a single throat. You are a thousand hearts, held by a singular love.

You think you are the same one as 10 years ago? A month ago? A second ago? You are the one that transforms in every single moment.

And yet you resist this eternal transformation. You seek to categorize yourself, to define yourself. You form a picture frame around your form.

“This is me. I’m like this. I’m not like that.”

It’s a frame you create. One that helps you link together the past memories, with a future possibility. A frame that gives your ever changing nature a sense of sane continuity.

And when one day, you see the frame you’ve been seeing through, when one day you see the eyes you’ve been seeing with, your security is shattered. You are enveloped by the visceral anxiety of impermanence.

“I thought I knew who I was. I do not.”

It is in that moment, that transformation starts to wind its ruthless will around your being. And you will realize you are not who you considered yourself to be…

You cannot choose this

The plague is coming. The dead are walking. What was once, will never be.

And it is into this inevitability that you throw your sense of will.

You believe you can choose to be transformed? You believe this is a ‘personal development’ that improves you, that gives you more of what you want?

Transformation is not a choice. It is the great surrender.

When she comes for you, you have two choices.

Resist her power, fight for your right to choose, and suffer, immeasurably.

Or you can bend over and spread your cheeks.

It may or may not be gentle.

Part of you is dying. You cannot cheat the reaper.

Let God have you. You cannot choose his claim on you. You can only choose your acquiescence as He has His way with you.

He does this from the greatest love you can imagine. He is not punishing you. God no. He is opening you. He is fucking you into the vulnerable and beautiful truth that you dare not admit.

What are you going to do?

Struggle? Or spit on your fingers, and help him enter you.

You have one choice only

The circle has turned. The rot is setting in.

That identity you had, where you knew who you were? It’s breaking down. If you try and hold onto it, it will decompose between your very fingers.

That idea of what was true is turning to dust and clogging up your throat.

What dies is no longer you. Let yourself fall apart, and you will discover that from the composting remains of your former identity, springs the new shoots of a greater consciousness.

This is the cycle. Life, into death, into ever changing life, into ever deeper death.

You have one choice.

Suffer. Or surrender.

If you submit to His will, you cannot fuck it up.

If you do not submit to His will, you cannot fuck it up.

Yet resistance is optional.

Where do you still cling to your outmoded sense of entitlement? Where do you still grasp to a concept of fairness, or rightness?

These are human ideas. Beautiful ideas.

But now you are in the realm of God. And here there is one choice only.

How deeply will you allow Him to enter you?

She loves you.

Die to Him.


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Ewan Townhead

I hope you enjoyed the article. If you're interested further in my work, you can find out more about me here, and my coaching here.

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  1. Avatar

    couldn´t agree more!
    most people draw back when facing the dynamics and reality of transformation.
    thx for descirbing it that way!

    • Ewan Townhead

      Totally. I know I’ve surrendered to transformation, mainly when the pain of staying where I am get’s too high. Otherwise I’d rather dodge it 😉

  2. Avatar

    Thank you Ewan. This was just what I needed to read today 😀 It really describes how I feel to a tee and thank you for making me laugh deeply about it! Perfect timing! Awesome! Gratitude!

    • Ewan Townhead

      I feel particularly glad it made you laugh!

  3. Avatar

    The whole world is going through a transformation at the moment; I think at least some of what we feel is the World’s resistance, the World’s pain; so even in those moment we fully accept we still can feel the depth of suffering and the constant companion of the unknown.

  4. Ewan Townhead

    Yes, I feel that’s true Fiona. An invitation into embracing suffering without diminishing it or throwing it off.

  5. Avatar

    Wow, Ewan, what a piece! I haven’t seen this side of you before – the hardcore mystic. Love it 🙂

    And it’s very aligned with my own work. If you have someone who needs to be worked from behind by mysterious forces, I know of a 3-month program that is really good at bringing that about 😉

    I love seeing you grow in public!

    Love E

  6. Ewan Townhead

    Hardcore mystic. I like it

    I had to surrender myself to write this. Drop some stuff I was holding.

    • Avatar

      It’s writing me…

      • Ewan Townhead


  7. Avatar

    Holy s**t, Ewan. As I read this I looked up and a gecko fell off the wall in the courtyard. I fell with him. This morning in my meditation the question arose, ‘how is the story I have of myself changing?’ I’m seeing that the pen for writing it isn’t in my hand. And then Michelangelo’s Creation of Adam appeared.

    The Universe has my attention.

    Thank you for your visceral and visual writing.

  8. Ewan Townhead

    I think you may have the Universe’s attention too LeeAnn.

    The pen for writing my is indeed not in your hand.

  9. Avatar

    Resistance can be fatal – literally. Psycho-neuro-immunology gives us the evidence for this. Thank you for this, exquisite timing.

    • Ewan Townhead

      You’re welcome 🙂 Resistance can be fatal. Wow. Yes. I guess the Borg were wrong. Resistance is not futile.

  10. Avatar

    Dear Ewan,

    thanks for this piece, finally someone who knows how describe deep transformation for real, sans sugar coating or flatlining. Compliments, much appreciated! Cheers, Anne

    • Ewan Townhead

      Thank you Anne. Your appreciation much appreciated. Especially from you.

  11. Avatar

    Powerful and intense, Ewan. Your words reflect my experience that Reality is not playing games and being awake is not a walk in the park. I feel myself and the world moving in the direction of a radical awakeness and I struggle daily with the call to surrender. Thank you!

    • Ewan Townhead

      You’re welcome Tomar. It’s not a game. And it’s all a game.

  12. Avatar

    God, I am blown away by this essay Ewan.

    I could barely stop laughing when I first read it…a nervous and totally triggered kind of laugh that said, you’ve got balls to let yourself be seen this way. Loving it but also fighting what you were presenting, big time. Like, fuck, this isn’t MY experience. NO!

    I knew something was up though and in the last days it’s been revealed. I have this massive river of a charge that’s been running subterranean in this life. I’ve known it but was adamant that I could manage it, must manage it.

    But that’s at a great loss and all I really can do is to surrender to it. Fuck! That’s terrifying to consider and I certainly don’t know how to do it other than to turn up.

    So yes, I know the dark side of transformation, have known it now for many years. I just didn’t want to know it.

    Thanks, truly for reminding me again of why I’m on this path of love.


    • Ewan Townhead

      Susan – triggered nervous laughing. Ha! Indeed. And yes. It’s all love. All of it. Even the resistance.

  13. Avatar

    Awesome article Ewan.


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