You start out in the first womb and it’s alright. There’s not much to do but you don’t get any bills, you never have to worry about where your next meal’s going to come from, and you don’t have to read anybody sharing their opinions about Donald Trump’s latest mouth fart.

They don’t let you stay there, though. After a while the first womb becomes too small for you, so you get moved out into the second womb.

The second womb is like the opposite of the first womb: there’s plenty to do and lots to look at, but it’s really abrasive and they basically just kick you around for a few decades and then bury you in dirt. There’s shouting and anger and telemarketers, there’s school and then work and then a steadily degrading convalescence. It’s like one of those really awkward social situations where you don’t know what to do with your hands, except it lasts a lot longer, and instead of your hands it’s everything.

And then, if you’re lucky and you don’t miscarry in the second womb, you get to be born.

Most pregnancies end in miscarriage, either in the first womb or the second womb. Sometimes the fetus is lost in the first twelve weeks of pregnancy, sometimes the fetus makes it all the way to the 300th trimester in the second womb and breathes its last breath on a bed surrounded by loved ones, but either way it’s a lucky fetus indeed that survives all the way until birth.

Being born is very nice, like all the best things in the first womb and all the best things in the second womb combined. There’s plenty to do and plenty to look at, as in the second womb, but it’s also very carefree and peaceful like in the first womb.

When you are born, your life ceases to be ruled by loud mental chatter. You are birthed out of a world that is constantly filtered through layers of mental narrative, and into one in which you just perceive what shows up.

Everything gets really still inside, which means you’re able to see beauty everywhere. All of a sudden you’re not looking at a world full of friends and enemies and right people and wrong people and inconveniences and obstacles, but a world full of dancing beauty in all different shapes and movements.

Because you’re not constantly living in the future or the past, you can just meet things as they are. Humans are no longer too tall or short, too fat or skinny, or too ugly or freaky or sickly or wrong, any more than a flower could be judged as any of these things. You see the world as an indie filmmaker might, not in terms of rightness or wrongness, but in the beauty and wholeness of its ordinariness so even a twisted piece of garbage on the ground is perfectly in place in the mise-en-scene of your everyday existence.

That’s not to say you can’t change things. It’s actually a lot easier to make a change now that that babbling mind is no longer putting up endless arguments with your every intention and action. The only trick it ever had was to run interference on your healthy impulses. It plays devil’s advocate, but only all of the time. Once the little troll has lost its grip, actions happen so much more easily. You find yourself moving away from toxic environments, untying unhealthy relationships and taking more courageous steps toward what you actually want with much greater ease and grace.

And that’s not to say there are no emotions, or that the pain of breaking attachments isn’t felt. Huge emotions move through you; grief, anger, sadness, yearning, sentimentality, self-pity, but now they can move all the way through. There’s no narrative manager in your head telling you that you shouldn’t be feeling these things and trying to distract them away. There’s just the feelings. And once the feelings are felt all the way through, the attachments and unhealthy bonds fall away cleanly.

And life gets better for people around you, too. You start to become clear about where your sovereign boundaries end and where other people’s begin. It becomes obvious what is your responsibility and what is theirs. Your unconscious expectations upon them and obligations toward them move into focus, and all the strange contracts and vows we unconsciously make with each other in the course of everyday life can now be re-negotiated in the light of consciousness. You can move from fraught and dissonant codependency with your loved ones into a much easier, freer, consensual and playful conscious collaboration.

Not everyone loves this. Some people are extremely invested in you being very unconscious about the obligations you have to them. They want those unspoken, unexamined contracts to stay in place. And they do not want you to become aware of the ways in which they have subverted all the normal expectations that you should have had on them for all this time to benefit themselves. They will fight to keep those subversions unconscious, but in that fight to keep them hidden, they can’t help but reveal them. Then they have a choice — move into a normal, healthy relationship with you, or leave. (Spoiler alert: they always leave.)

These changes are as drastic, as paradigm-shifting, and at times as stress-inducing as the transition from the first womb to the second womb, because the differences between life as it actually is and life as the mind says it is are as great as the differences between darkness and light, between stasis and mobility.

And it’s there that life really begins. Until you were able to see and interface with life as it’s actually occurring, you were at the whim of unseen forces lurking below the surface of consciousness and jerking you around like an unseen puppeteer pulling the strings from above the stage. When the lights are turned on everywhere, you can see the whole picture and can actually begin living your life in a harmonious and efficacious way.

We talk a lot about politics and revolution in this space, but in reality what we’re actually waiting for is humanity’s birth from its second womb. For the human species to drastically shift from its second-womb relationship with mental narrative, wherein it can always be propagandized toward self-destructive behavior, into a relationship where thought is no longer a story to be compulsively believed but a tool to be used freely to create beautiful things.

When people ask what can be done to save humankind, they aren’t usually ready to hear the most direct answer to their question. If they are very locked-in to their second womb perspectives, you have to be very indirect and say something like “a political revolution” or whatever. If they’re a little less locked in you can get away with saying something more direct and to the point, like “We’ve got to kill people’s trust in the propaganda machine”. But if you are actually ready to hear the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, then there’s only one answer to give you:

Humanity needs to be born.


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49 responses to “Birth From The Second Womb”

  1. Humanity has already born and is evolving ( going through birth pangs)as is the planet. Everything in the universe is .Order and chaos .Growth through adversity.
    The Christ on the cross. “A paradox of the divine and suffering.”
    I think you mean the finished product of entirely conscious human beings ( knowing their SELF beyond the little self/ego)on this planet has not yet been born( save the Budda, Christ , Krishna and a small group of enlightened beings from time to time ).
    Exposing the truth of those ruling the world through the banking cabal is important .Dogma busting.
    But more important is ” know thyself” ” as “only when you are free of the world can you help it”.
    Its a great opportunity to meditate, to look inside …who doesn’t have time to being locked up.

  2. This post reminds me of a theory of mine – ‘there are only three types of people’ : (womb) 1. Those who need to be controlled, (womb) 2. Those who need to control & (womb) 3. those who need neither. … Of course we can partake of & be influenced by 1 & 2 to varying degrees, but when 3 is realised and firmly lived … freedom to choose 1 or 2 or neither for the best results & good of all happens. (Admitting non of us are perfect & make mistakes too of course).

  3. Mankind must be reborn by the spirit and not the flesh by those who believe.

  4. well well well i s’pose you think you really did it this time. yep.
    well, alls i know is i gotta get me some money to go buy a bucket of gasoline to drink before i can finish a jonnyfarto slant on things. plus caitlin, you unleashed a monster mash on us and i’m sure he’s reich it’s jist i don’ know what he said…and of course, thasall yer fault.

    gees Louise i write some daze and float around SF… useta… when ya cud float. but now i know i cud do it if i had a tech support like you got. how much is that guy? half of everythin’ i s’pose. you be free. and i would be.
    but i live here and it’s chillin. freezin da funny bone. which you freed up a lot thanks to yer friendly keeper there.

  5. Beautiful. Truly, the only thing that will save the world is this birth from the second womb (into a third?). Alan Watts said something to the effect, in paraphrase, “that the only way we’re going to save the world is to stop trying to save it.” I don’t think he was talking about a kind of laziness or passivity, but withdrawing from trying to fix the problem “out there” and focus on being right here. As I think you are saying, it is from that spacious centeredness that we can better “save the world.”

    I wouldn’t say that it is so sharply defined, but I see a strong correlation with these wombs and what could be called the “uroboric/oceanic self” (first womb), “physical-egoic self” (second womb), and an “ensouled-world self” (second birth/possible third womb).

    My only bone of contention with what you say is that while, yes, all of the old mental-egoic attitudes and hang-ups are transparent-ized and recognized as existing soap-bubble-like within a larger spaciousness (rather than we being trapped within the bubbles as opaque false absolutes), this “second birth” doesn’t necessarily negate distinction-making or preference or, dare I say, “better and worse.” To use one of the examples you used, fatness and thinness can both be seen as expressions of the multiplicity of nature/divinity, but one can still understand that being thinnish is generally healthier than being fat (or excessively thin). You touch upon this when you talk about changing things and moving away from toxic environments. This “toxicity” includes excessive and unhealthy relationships and habits, such as various addictions and attachments. It is “better” to sit down with a blank pad of paper and create imaginary worlds with graphite than it is to zone out on an xbox. Not as an absolute, but as a basic pattern.

    The tricky part is that the birth out of the second womb is usually not (never?) fully complete, at least in this context of the world story; we tend to leave part of ourselves behind, not-yet-born, still attached to the old patterned ways of thinking and doing. This is why you have many otherwise very spiritually awake people with various psychological (and often sexual) hang-ups. In other words, being born from the second womb is, practically speaking, less like a great flood that sees one move from one place to another in one complete and tidy swoosh, and more like throwing a grappling hook onto the top of a wall, pulling yourself up, but realizing you still have various lines attached to where you came from.

    So an ounce of the kind of freedom you speak of can be (and often is) used to rationalize old attachments as “perfect manifestations of the divine”–or, in more secular phraseology, “its all good.” Being fat or skinny or healthy are all equally valid expressions of the “divine” multiplicity, but in the end, there’s no denying the reality that being healthy is preferrable to being unhealthy, being relatively fit is “better” than being very un-fit. In that sense, I would argue that this is one of the problems with leftist ideology: in rightly rejecting the judgemental dualisms of conservativism, it flattens everything out as being equally true. In other words, it takes a profound intuition of the deeper nature of reality and mis-applies it to the relative and contextual.

    It may be that this second birth enables an integration to occur whereby we take the best of both worlds: the dualisms of the traditional with the relativism of the postmodern. In a practical sense, and using the same example, this might take the form of this: “If I am fat or thin, healthy or unhealthy, it doesn’t make me any more or less valid, divine, worthy, etc. But my overall sense of well-being and vitality is strengthened by moving towards health in my body, mind, and soul.”

  6. This ought t go a long way towards waking people up so that they can be born as humans:

  7. My view of history is long term optimistic: I believe the system which controls us, often called the pharmaceutical-military-industrial-complex, is the second last in a progression of population control systems each of which has outstripped the previous one in terms of science and knowledge, technological skill and control over nature and mankind. Such control is now enormous and potentially capable of turning the world into a paradise if it were not for the fact that the population control systems are managed by extremely clever but secretive, wealthy but arrogant psychopaths who know they are above the law and use their wealth and influence behind the scenes to perpetrate all-pervasive methods of mind-control to entrench themselves in seats of power. I am among a minority of intellectuals who believe these psychopaths inadvertently created and now manage a long-term self-destructive system. I believe things in the world will continue to challenge us until a global upheaval and major transformation occurs. Then wise, insightful, eco-friendly, generous, community orientated, truth and peace-loving people will come out from their corners and hideouts to build a new and glorious civilization. I believe these revolutionary pioneers, currently hated by elite globalists, will rise to the occasion and turn the world into a paradise. Read more of this here:

    1. The point is that prior to birth you are free of all ideas.That state is still present , it underlies all of the concepts that have been acquired since birth. Rediscover that non-conceptual state and you will be completely free.

      1. “And a little child shall lead them,”

        –from Isaiah 11:6


    Caitlin is a semi closeted non-dualist.
    All her writing springs from that inspiration.
    Mirriam Webster: Nondualism definition is – a doctrine of classic Brahmanism holding that the essential unity of all is real whereas duality and plurality are phenomenal illusion and that matter is materialized energy which in turn is the temporal manifestation of an incorporeal spiritual eternal essence constituting the innermost self of all things.

    1. Mike McDonnell Avatar
      Mike McDonnell

      A way of saying this which is wholly within our western tradition is that what you call a non-dualist is a pantheist in the sense of finding god in the laws of physics. To a pantheist, god is the universe, and your comment about matter being materialized energy is a commonplace of modern science as expressed by Einstein’s early papers in relativity: E=M X c^2. That, in turn, is a “manifestation of an incorporeal spiritual eternal essence” which we call quantum field theory and which is considered by physics to be the ground of all being or “the innermost self of all things.”

      1. How would you describe PanENtheisim via the laws of physics? (Everything existing in that ‘unity’ and that ‘unity’ existing in everything. Retaining ‘individual natures’ in unity?).

    2. Thank you, Bradley, for telling us what Caitlin is. But I think that what she is is far less important than who she is. The same with you and me.

  9. michiel kassies Avatar
    michiel kassies

    Just looked for a way to clap or press the thumb here, or say…
    lovely truth!

    thank you, prolific truthcaster, Caitlin Johnstone

  10. norman john broomhall Avatar
    norman john broomhall

    good on yez , cobber

  11. Michel Bélisle Avatar
    Michel Bélisle

    The propaganda machine is so pervasive. And it is all around the world. Here in Quebec, Canada, one of the major French network begins all its coverage of the pandemic with a very stressful music sounding like the music you heard in the 1960’s series “The Invaders” with Roy Thinnes.

    Truly fed up. I pray the Rosary to hasten the return of Jesus because I do have seen enough of all the bs.

    1. Well I’m not quite fed up so could you please lessen the scope of your raptourous wishes to not include me, perhaps just pray the rosary to hasten your death?

      1. Michel Bélisle Avatar
        Michel Bélisle

        Wish you a good life with your face masks on… and do not forget there were airplanes wreckages in the Pentagone and in a field in Pennsylvania for everybody to be seen on 9/11.

        Lies are probably easy to endorse for somebody wishing to protect his social status, money and assets at any price…

        Fed up also with people of bad faith… Keeping my Rosary on hand!

      2. “Now therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong: for I have heard from the Lord GOD of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth,”

        –Isaiah 28:22

  12. Roundball Shaman Avatar
    Roundball Shaman

    So many people spend their entire lives (the Second Womb) trying to get back to the First Womb so they’ll re-find bliss with no worries and no responsibilities. They keep trying to walk backwards on the moving escalator against the natural flow of life.

    And then there’s the Fourth Womb. The Fourth Womb is what the first three are really all about. You get here, you do stuff here and get bogged down, you wake up from all the garbage you were slogging through, and you finally get to a place really worth staying in. The birth OUT of This World…

    The real birth beyond One, Two, and Three. The Ah-Ha moment when we realize what fools we’ve been wasting our lives away on loads of nonsense. When we slap ourselves on the forehead and say “What the hell was I thinking?! I wasted my whole life on THIS?! Why didn’t I realize this sooner? Why didn’t anyone tell me? Now, my earthly life is over and I MISSED IT…

    Oh wait. A curtain is rising. The fog is lifting and something is coming into view. Wow! This place is beautiful! Maybe I didn’t miss it after all. Holy shhhh….”

    May we all be granted the grace to be birthed into the Fourth Womb.

  13. For Ms Johnstone and the fans of Mr. Mike Pompeo:
    Washington’s presumed global empire is all washed up. Its disgraceful dereliction towards American public health is abundantly clear. Its bullying of China, Russia, Venezuela, and others is futile. Its navy is impotent from COVID-19 sick sailors aboard billion-dollar warships. And Iran, hammered by US sanctions, is able to make a landmark satellite achievement while beating the US in terms of managing a pandemic. No wonder the Americans are livid.
    Please read this article here:
    Iran Launches US Fury By Finian Cunningham!

  14. This is very, very good. Insightful, great metaphor. As we Yanks say, “you knocked it out of the park!”

    But you are, as always, very optimistic, and I don’t understand why. We are, as one of your unsung but genius countrymen said, a “plague species”. That book changed my life and my perspective.

    I appreciate very much your work. You have proved yourself in a special class. From nowhere, you have become very much in the road to There. I commend you.

  15. That was an amazing piece ! and you brought it completely home with that zinger of a last sentence! I so appreciate your work Caitlin. You represent a piece of sanity in my tiny little corner of the world. PS would really love to see another video with you and hubby Tim.. I just love the chemistry, wonderful humor and insightfulness which flows between the two of you. thank you Caitlin, thank you oh so much!

  16. “We talk a lot about politics and revolution in this space, but in reality what we’re really waiting for is humanity’s birth from its second womb. For the human species to drastically shift from its second-womb relationship with mental narrative, wherein it can always be propagandized toward self-destructive behavior, into a relationship where thought is no longer a story to be compulsively believed but a tool to be used freely to create beautiful things.”

    Becoming human the stewards of life on Earth.

  17. The second birth is the real purpose of the first birth. To miss it is to miss the boat — across the river of samsara to the other shore — and into the infinite realm of nirvana.

  18. Beautiful…
    I’d only say “civilized humanity” needs to be born. Probably the Amerindians in Amazonas have already been born, long long ago.

  19. Fxxking Genius! This offering needs to be read everyday to one’s self… until further notice. 🙂

    Thank you.


  20. Best yet, Caitlin. Humanity needs to be (re)born.

  21. Michel Bélisle Avatar
    Michel Bélisle

    And we were saying before the pandemic that the world had become so individualistic… Just wait after this pandemic last year will look like a very community-based society compared with what is coming.

    Nothing human about what is coming…

    Probably the full version of the days of Noah all over again. And soon after the return of Jesus in a world that will have turn human nature upside down.

    Keeping my Rosary on hand!

      Last Man Standing, from a month ago, makes the case that the current global pandemic, first apparent to us in Wuhan, in January, was seeded there by American military participants in the global military game in Wuhan. Some of the Americans got really sick with something, had to be hospitalized and couldn’t compete in their events. Could have been coronavirus, as we look back.
      The soldiers stayed in a hotel near the wet-market, and trained near Ft Detrick, Maryland.
      Enticing circumstantial evidence. There’s more.​

      Eleni sends this article about Chinese research into the ancestry of the novel coronavirus that hit Wuhan so hard.
      Italy wants to know, too. The US is preventing any investigation of American “flu deaths” from this past winter.
      It was bad in the hospitals. I had a patient almost die in November/December, and all the teaching hospital found was “coronavirus”.
      “This suggests that the H1 specimen was brought to the seafood market by some infected person, which sparked the epidemic. The gene sequence cannot lie.” (Ambassador Zhang) ​…​
      ​ ​Shockingly enough, Italy wanted to trace the first infection case of Covid-19 by conducting an exhumation in the US of so-called flu victims, by the US has flatly refused permission.

      1. Michel Bélisle Avatar
        Michel Bélisle

        Yes John,

        There seems to be an agenda…

        Imagine a world where everybody are wearing facemasks and practicing social distanciation. How can a guy have a beer on the terrace of a bar? We will miss the good old times.

        To have endorse the “System” at every turn despite all the lies will lead us to this nightmare society.

        This is why I pray the Rosary to hasten the return of Jesus.

  22. This rebirth you describe is a very Matrix-esque image. But then, some would say that Neo’s rebirth echoes what Jesus & Gautama Siddhartha both preached—or “BOB” Dobbs with his command to “Pull the wool over your own eyes!” As Kerouac would remind us, Buddha is a title meaning “the One who Woke Up,” but that awakening is only part of the rebirth process.

  23. Cool Caitlin !

    “Solitude is the cure for loneliness”
    Marianne Moore, poet.

  24. Michel Bélisle Avatar
    Michel Bélisle

    “We’ve got to kill people’s trust in the propaganda machine”

    The problem with that is that people are very vulnerable to propaganda by the fact that the faith is almost extinguished in the West and that they do not have the lighting that comes from Heaven to discern propaganda .

    A return to faith would be the solution to many problems.

    Keeping my Rosary on hand!

  25. “He not busy being born is busy dying.”

  26. wonderful! thank you! yes!

  27. Normand Drolet Avatar
    Normand Drolet

    At the end of the Pixar movie “Ratatouille”, the chef asks the customer : “What will it be today ?” To which the customer answers : “Surprise me, you always do”

    Indeed, your writings are most of the time surprising.
    You find new images, new ways to bring the truth to us (or to bring us to the truth).

    Thank you Caitlin Johnstone

  28. One of the profounder pieces you’ve shared with us, Caitlin. It goes to the heart of what the great spiritual teachings have tried to get across to us, each in their own way, before they became warped and ossified into institutional religions, now a large part of the the problem we face in allowing ourselves to be reborn, to do our best to assist in that process. I suspect that you know it, as do many of your readers, but for those who might not yet have picked up on it, what Caitlin is engaged in via this extraordinary blog (IMHO, perhaps my presumptuous opinion) is what “theology” is supposed to be, what it must be when its appropriate focus is on living this life with meaning and authenticity, in “truth” as best we can glean it. Does not all metaphysics melt into existentialism? Perhaps one apt definition of “neoliberalism” is the suppression and attempted elimination of the existential aspect of being human, if you get my drift however poorly expressed.

  29. This was Jesus’ dictate: to be born again into the truth and light of being consciousness itself.

  30. Is Ekhard Tolle a good place to start?

    1. Pretty good.
      Sure not bad.

    2. I heard some sections of one of Eckart Tolle’s books on tape when I was listening to Richard Greene on Air America Radio years ago. He was a huge fan of Tolle, and was so excited he wanted to share it with his audience by playing it on the show. He thought it was a big deal to hear him read his own book in his own voice. Tolle said stuff like “manifest in the now”, which sounds truthy, and is consistent with some other self help advice I’ve heard. I found it mostly too abstract to follow though.
      I did find a qi gong video I like though, which has been more useful to me. If you don’t know, qi gong is similar to yoga and tai chi, but without holding poses. It’s all slow, gentle movements. I like “Qi Gong: The Deeper Flow” by Lee Holden. I tried a video with a different instructor, but I found him bossy and abrasive, where Lee Holden has a very relaxing voice. I like this video better than the other Lee Holden videos I’ve tried, because he’s outside with a pretty lake in the background instead of in a studio. Also this one is a little less than half an hour, which I find much easier to do every day than the 45 minute one. This one does not involve sitting on the floor. I think it is designed to stimulate not just blood circulation in deep tissues and organs, but other bodily fluids like joint fluid and lymph fluid, and also stimulates digestion and ear/nose/throat drainage. I am currently finding it helpful in regaining range of motion in a frozen shoulder. He says stuff about life force flowing, which sounds a bit airy-fairy, but you don’t have to take it literally. It’s still a pleasant visualization, which I find helpful as I try to “manifest in the now”, which I think is the same as meditation or mindfulness or whatever we are calling it now. I give myself credit for both exercise and meditation if I try to focus.

  31. To view the great depths of ” Infinity ” one must honestly look within oneself without illusions. Thank You, Ms Johnstone, you are indeed a Buddha. I wonder how many of your readers will ever realize the magnificence of this article of yours? Wow!

    1. Too funny. Propaganda machine examples everywhere we turn… since another comment was “amen” I thought I’d use another word expressing the same sentiment from another tradition. It occurred to me that not everyone may be familiar with the word so I looked it up to see how the internet described it and what do I find? Corrupt, co-opted crap. For those who don’t know, it means amen or yes, I hear, see and agree… it may be found in Native American ceremonial gatherings.

      1. yes! here in NM, we get “aho.”

        1. Only 8 months to Christmas.
          Are you ready?

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