Monthly Archives: November 2017

All the Days

Today has been a low energy day for me. Low physical energy and low mental energy. Lately I’ve had an easier time accessing good thoughts and feelings, but today everything seemed out of reach.

It’s hard to maintain OKness with one’s value in the world when one hasn’t done anything of substance. But, that’s this whole lesson, isn’t it? That our worth and value in this life does not come from accomplishing things, but simply by being. and by being the most authentic self? And so, even on days when I can’t quite make anything happen, I have to be ok with myself. It’s hard, but it’s coming more easily.

I cannot completely quiet the part of my mind that would like to list off all of the reasons people who do not accomplish the many things that are to be done simply suck. I also tell myself the story that I need to be vibrating at the highest frequency available to me, and that a low energy day is irresponsible when I know how deeply the world needs as much love as each of us can muster. It’s a bit of work to remember these are stories, and to simply be.

Speaking of what the world needs…. Holy canoli’s. I watched cable tv for about an hour today. Saw commercials for products and other shows. I hadn’t realized exactly how far we’ve descended. If I was low energy before seeing that, I was crushed energy afterward. I am not much for TV, but between the honey boo boo lady, the ‘made famous by murder’ series that really does make these people (even more) famous, the drugs that cause suicide and depression — seriously, how can a people create a functional society when we are so fascinated watching the train wreck? It was crazy. And depressing. and nauseating. I’m so glad I don’t often watch TV. And then there is the statistic about kids watching several hours per day. Ugh.

So, yeah. Not my best day on many counts, and a really unfortunate window into the culture. But, I am surrounded by kindness and grace, and I may not be able to celebrate it actively today, but I sure can be grateful for it, recognize it, not look for it to improve for me to be ok. I am going to do my evening sitting and go to bed, quiet but appreciative, and see what tomorrow brings.

Ever-Evolving

I don’t know where I got the idea that one grows through childhood and adolescence and then becomes an adult who is then relatively stable from first cocktail through death. That is most definitely not the case in my experience. Indeed, I would venture to say that my young adulthood was far more transitional than my adolescence. And my 40’s are profoundly evolutionary. I felt like the same person from the age of enlightenment, or my memory, well into my 30’s. I do not feel like the same person anymore.

I am thrilled with the changes that have transpired in me. Even though I am only in the very baby steps of my journey through forgiveness, surrender and the experience of all as God, this is so much better than my journey to prove myself, demonstrate my worthiness and try to get a really good tan.

The life of constant dissatisfaction is slowly ebbing away. Trust is really taking its place. I feel like I always wanted this kind of transition, but somehow it is only recently that I can feel and sense and be in the space of trust and the flow of life itself. Is it maturity? Is it a change in the collective consciousness that is making it easier for people like me? Is it grace?

My kids aren’t particularly spiritually inclined, and my hope for them is that when they do turn their gazes to the stars, that the quickening of spirit uplift them. That experiential interaction with life itself moving through you as it moves the stars is enough to dawn a new journey in their experience.  And just like women’s rights stands on the shoulders of those who went before, and the struggle goes on but in ever-widening circles, may my children and all the children be lifted by the breakthroughs of , well, everyone who cares.

I care a great deal. Especially in the last year or so I have a felt sense of my responsibility to vibrate at the highest frequency available to me by choice, so as to contribute to the upliftment of humanity.

I never realized at any other time in my history that rehashing an old wound or sitting in judgement of something that was obviously wrong/corrupt/pathetic, was a choice. An active choice of a pretty negative current, no matter how “right” my judgement may have been. And, let’s face it, even saying that I’m just fooling myself.

There is a piece of The Presence Process that validates everything you feel, but basically says, “So What?” Yes, that happened. Yes, it was hard. Yes, you can feel injured. But frankly, here you are sitting here, injured or not, be present. Take responsibility for your own being.  You can blame all you want, and that blame may be entirely valid, but it is still utterly meaningless in the journey to where you want to go. That just takes a decision. Full responsibility. And a practice.

I think I’ve heard that stuff thousands of times in my life. And I really, really wanted to integrate it. Why it didn’t start taking hold until recently, I do not know. But what I do know is that breathing, walking, meditating, reading, writing – doing these things slowly and methodically and as a practice, my life is changing. My thoughts are fewer and far more gentle. My natural facial structure is a smile. I worry less – I think less in general, and more of my thinking is appreciative. These are the changes I’d been hoping for. I have slowing down to thank.

But, I also have evolving to thank. A picture of myself as a growing, changing being. Adulthood was sortof represented to me in my youth as something you become and then sortof defend. Here’s why I’m right and everyone else is wrong, and if I’m not good enough, screw you. That was what I saw, whether or not it was what culture was trying to represent. A lot has changed since then. I’m really grateful for those changes.

 

Setting My Own Pace

I am extraordinarily lucky. I get to set my own pace in life. Sometimes I have guidelines, budgets, requirements, but always I have choices, preferences and opportunities. We all do, I think, but I am aware of this freedom in ways uncommon to the standard method of living that I see all around me.

That first fortress wall is really quite tight. Well-fortified. Culturally supported and personally sustained. It’s actually a lot of work to keep up with a pace of life not internally driven. Exhausting or boring, I think.

So these walls protecting our images of what we’re supposed to be doing are really strong, but once you start to question them, they fall. Hard and fast in some ways, deceivingly slowly in others. But once you start questioning “Why?” most of the reasons we live dictated instead of creative lives fall apart pretty quickly.

The biggest question, the sand in the timer, is what do you really value. I know people who truly value looking good and showing up in the world as physically beautiful as they can make themselves. That is a lovely way of being. It is of very little interest to me, but I can respect that’s what they’re into.

I know other people who want to be seen as successful, and some that want to have fun. Everyone’s got different motivations. Mine change around a bit, but they’re mostly based on feeling a sense of ease, peace between my ears, function in my body and care towards my family. It’s a pretty simple life I lead. Though sometimes I really want to show up differently in the world. Sometimes I want to be the understanding one, sometimes the smart one – but I’ve got to admit those days are waning. I don’t fancy myself such a smarty pants anymore. I went from thinking i knew everything to hardly wanting to contribute 2 cents to a piggy bank. It’s liberating in a thousand ways, but because I valued that aspect of my intellect and practical application for so long, it’s also a bit disorienting. How am I supposed to show up in the world if not on the rails of my old patterns?

Practices and Habits, right? My habits would have had me show up in what I now consider quite useless ways. My practice is to show up wherever I am as the most grounded and present version of myself that my energy allows and the situation calls for.

There have been a few instances in the last year when I overrode my own autonomy in managing my activities and pace. I felt obligated. I felt it was what someone important to me expected from me. TERRIBLE DECISION EVERY TIME!!  Hugely “punch in the nose” bad crap happened. Kindof a drag, but also remarkably helpful in deciding that no matter what folks think, even those dearest to me, I get to live in response to life at my own pace. I wish this freedom, the awareness of this freedom, for everyone.

 

You Never Know

It’s hard to know what other people are thinking. It’s hard to know what they want, or how to help them. And that’s ok.

I’ve often been the first one to jump in and “fix” things for people, and I am delighted that time in my life is waning. For a lot of reasons. The primary reason is I have developed enormous trust in the universe, and so the idea of fixing just gets more and more ridiculous. Things are as they are and are developing as they are developing because they are replete with life lessons, skills, and opportunities that really couldn’t come any other way. So, who am I to jump in and “help”? I’ve done it before. It has been deeply helpful a few times, and not at all helpful most of the time. I think the odds on that definitely speak to considering new routes.

And so I’ve got some dear, dear people in my life, actively struggling with some eminently solvable problems. It is sad to see them struggle. I can empathize with the pain and uncertainty they face. It’s a tough spot.

There was a time in my life I would HAVE TO get involved. How can you watch someone you love struggle and NOT get involved? I would’ve been very disappointed in my future self for choosing to sit back in a silent support role. What the #$% kind of help is that?

Oh, my former self, I get you. I really do. And I would be happy to jump in and help ONCE SOMEONE ASKS. oooh – this is quite the distinction. Because you know what? People rarely ask for help. And in my limited experience, even when they do, they don’t really want it.

All of this to say: managing our relationships can be complicated. Managing our interactions with other people, and managing the thoughts and feelings associated with being in relationship, with basically every individual relationship we have.

And that is why focusing on Life Itself moving through All Of Us is so much easier. It strongly grounds a stance that Life Itself is in charge, that it is moving through all of us whether we know/acknowledge it or not. Life Itself is Life Positive, and so while it has a decay phase, it is always generating new life, new opportunities, new growth. Sitting in *that* space offers the view of the witness, who can see the beauty in it, smell the rose’s fragrance, and not go in with scissors trying to prune everything and bring it into control.

I am enjoying this point of view and approach to life.

We had a few people over for Thanksgiving. Things were said I didn’t understand. For the first time in my life, I didn’t feel the need to go in and get to the bottom of things. I’m not trying so hard to control. I’m happy just being a participant.

Were those people trying to tell me something I needed to know? I have no idea. I trust that if I can be of service in any way, they’ll bring it up again, but in the meanwhile it is not my mental chew toy of days gone by. Oh, am I grateful for that. Embracing the present moment, dropping the fixations and needing to fix, it solves a lot of problems.

Now, I have no idea how the other people in my life feel about these new approaches coming through me. I am sorry if they feel neglected in any way. But I can’t know what they feel unless they tell me, and I am tired of guessing, trying to be pre-emptive, etc. I am so open to communication, but I am no longer open for mind-reading. It wasn’t my skill. I’ve never fancied myself psychic. And when a relationship, impression or feeling is up for question (someone said things I didn’t understand, and there was not forum for diving deeper at the time) I just am wrapping it in a pillow of light and releasing it to its highest good.

Ups and downs, periods of closeness and distance, appreciation and annoyance, these things are natural. But rather than trying to manage all of them, I’m now just managing my own presence, my openness to Life Itself, my own OKness with myself and Life Itself, which naturally translates to everyone.

Practices or Habits?

I don’t know where I saw it today, or what pieces of information came together to see that if you don’t have practices, you’ve got habits. If you’re not doing it intentionally, you’re doing it unconsciously. If I am not setting the direction and choosing, i am sheeple.

These past several years have been replete with new and valuable practices. From inquiry to Tai Chi, Ascending to Feminine Power, from Paul Selig’s work to health practices. I’ve got a lot of practices and it’s true, I am watching my habits diminish in the power of those practices.

Being that all of the practices are towards freedom, in love, it’s generating quite a bit of harmony in my experience of my days lately.

I can feel the judgements and stresses that have been habits. I can remember the energetic signature of certain feelings. And for a breath, I can coexist with all of it, noticing, accepting, feeling. maybe for another breath. and another. and maybe another. And the strings of moments are forming lovely little vignettes on the necklace of my life. Unedited. Sometimes it doesn’t make sense.

I do have a lot of slowing down practices. and looking for God practices, and being with God practices, and calming practices and anti-inflammation practices. But what use are they?

They’re use is transforming my life by responding as if life is friendly instead of always being on the lookout of being judged or judging. I get a little tired of it.

I’d like to be a practices connoisseur.  A sommelier for tools to ease your process  – but i have no desire to be a psychologist. I like them, and i believe they need to be well trained and I am not in for the training myself. I don’t want to dedicate my time to that field of study, though I appreciate those who do.

I want to talk about evolving humanity. I want to live in evolutionary ways. I want to be signal amongst all of the static. at least if you tune in to my vibration it is a portkey to god. I want to be a portkey to God! How cool would that be.

I don’t know what is next for me, but I know it’s about showing up in the world. I know I am self-selecting as discussed in both Selig & Neale Donald Walsch books. I really don’t care about the stories and dramas that, had all these practices not come into play, would’ve owned me. I am happy. I enjoy open communication with a family that I truly adore and truly feel the love from. The universe keeps kissing my cheek. The practices help make sure I don’t miss it. Not missing it is full and fun.

Not Stopping

I’ve committed to these 20 minute unedited writings, and i’ve missed some time. But rather than quitting because I stopped, I am going to just accept the pause and move on. Because slowing down means sometimes you can’t get everything you want to get done, done. And that’s as much of a blessing as it is a curse. And the curse is only as permanent as i make it. and as far as priorities go: the proof is in the pudding.

And slowing down helps you determine just what puddings you want in your life, and build the habits that make *those* puddings count, and not the whole buffet table of puddings you “think you should” be/do/have/want/become.

THANKS GIVING

I am thankful.

I’m thankful i’m sitting down to write again, but also thankful for a really nice holiday. It went really well.

Just prior to everyone arriving, I sent a note to Eric Klein from Wisdom Heart thanking him for the Healing Family Karma program. I did my first run of that program 4 years ago, I think, and the energy dynamics in my body in relationship to my family and our patterns has shifted significantly and in such freeing ways. So, I thanked him. And then I thought, “probably should’ve waited until after the actually family got physically together” ala Ram Dass and “when you think you’re enlightened, go visit your family.” But I knew it was going to be lovely and loving whatever happened, so I didn’t feel I jinxed it, and if I did jinx it, it would just be an opportunity to infuse love into the pattern.

I didn’t jinx it.

In fact, I had a wonderful day.

We had a pretty organized set-up so there was very little stress. I used to organize and still stress, but with Tai Chi asking me to empty, empty, empty, as soon as I felt it I could ask if it was necessary (in which case what does it have to alert me to or have me take care of right now so I can go do that and relieve the stress), or release-able. Which it was. Nearly all of the time. And those few other times, the feeling of stress was timed with something I had to do, or at least check.

The turkey took longer than I expected. Dinner was late. I am sure I am the only one surprised by this. And I wasn’t really suprised, either. I had just tried really hard for it not to be. But the timing was fine, and everything moved along in its own rhythm that worked (if, albeit, late).

Anyhow, Thankfulness was very present and easy to maintain all day, in deep and happy ways. Reflecting back on the stress I would feel (and feel justified and. and maybe even be justified in, but still what a poor choice) and emit on holiday dinners. From doing the work (which I’ve always enjoyed, but used to be very short and stressed in – but thanks to Tucker that’s been on a path of loosening since we’ve been together) to having opinions on everyone’s life and reactions. Geez. That taxes the system! And it’s totally optional! Wow. I’m so glad my consciousness is developing away from stress and toward relaxation in the moment. These practices work. And they fill you up with yourself and life itself moving through you. And life itself responds in myriad pervasive ways. All that stress blocks it. Life is trying to kiss you through your armor and you just don’t have space to let it in. I never had space. Slowing down is creating the space. And life keeps rushing in. And it’s lovely.

Healing Family Karma was a great program. So have all the Wisdom Heart programs been. And this Feminine Power course is absolutely excellent. And Byron Katie’s work. And Yoga Nidra. and “Awaken the New Species Within You” program. And well.org’s work, and ‘the energy blueprint” podcast. and Paul Selig’s books. Ohmygosh, Paul Selig’s books. And Tai Chi. And slowing down. I like this path.

and I am thankful.

More and More Slowing Down

There is no question that slowing down is benefitting my life in numerous and indescribable ways. As I learn more techniques, and as my value system adjusts, the practice deepens and the results are more grounded and grounding. Life gets less complex. And when I get caught up in a drama, it lasts for less time and, even better, I am able to try to expand my container to allow to drama to simplify (this, from Thomas Huebl, complexity being simplicity in the wrong size container. So rich.)

And so it makes perfect sense that I want more and more slowing down. I want to go out and acquire practices, learn new insights and techniques and perspectives. But all of that is a doing, and that is part of the old paradigm that is needing to shift. Lord knows I have enough tools. Lord knows if I could integrate and apply all of the knowledge I’ve learned, I’d surely be fully One with the Universe by now.

Of course, that’s the ticket, isn’t it? We are one with the universe at every moment in time, aware of it or not. Breaking the urge to go out and acquire more learning, and just rest in that one principle, that one truth. The full feeling of the physical and biological reality. We are made of star stuff. Nothing more. Nothing less. This great cosmos is our Mother. We are made of her because every atom in existence is Her, and therefore we are trillions of bits of her rolled into one mobile device.

Ha. We are a mobile device. That’s a funny thought. Probably leads me to ascribe more value to humans than I ever have before, because I certainly feel mobile devices add a lot of value to the human life. Geez, I felt that way when it was my ridiculous suitcase of a phone, but now, with the internet in your pocket. Mobile devices provide A LOT of value.

I love Bruce Lipton’s (or at least that’s where I heard it first) that the internet is the neural network of a shared humanity.

So, back to this mobile device concept. What value do we, in our portable package, offer God? I’ve heard “God craves experience.” We are certainly having experience. And to eat Il Posto’s black truffle risotto was in no way similar to any descriptions of it. But why are those peak experiences (really, really tasty dinners) few and far between? I suppose to provide the contrast to set them apart.

Another concept that has been evolving and unfolding in my mind is that Life Itself has placed us here to anchor love. Everything else we do might move the needle a little up or down, but the bulk of our work here is really simply to be. Now, part of being is going to involve a certain amount of action for most people, but -and this is key- the being is the important part. So that activity is non-essential to the individual value. This is a huge point for me when I’m immobile, and I have friends who are immobile and it is something that is very hard to come to terms with in our society. Maybe any society.

And so the desire for more is still a trap, even more of the good stuff. Like Krishna says in the Gita, it’s both aversions and preferences we need to release, not just the aversions. Collecting preferences is just as detrimental to the path of Liberation as wallowing in or cursing the aversions.

Practically Perfect

Growing up, my dad always cut my hair. I had some pretty bad haircuts. He would lure me into the chair telling me he was going to cut my hair just like Mary Poppins. I was probably 12 when I realized Mary Poppins had a bun. [Right? about the time VCR’s came out. back in the day when you saw a movie at 6 and just had to remember it, unless it was the “Movie of the Week” or something…]

Mary Poppins. Practically Perfect in Every Way. What a moniker!

Tucker and I had quite a bit of lively conversation about perfection back in the early days of our relationship. I spoke a lot about perfection – as in ‘imperfectly perfect’ like ‘that’s the perfect sweater for X because X loves gaudy sweaters.’ Tucker would get quite defensive about that indeed not being a perfect sweater by any means, even though it was suitable for X. Nuance.

It’s only now, 2 decades later, that I’m reflecting on that and I can see the deep well of conflicting concepts that sortof all existed in me and so thereby i saw them as unified. Not so.

I believe that God is in All Things. As in, God is everything and everything, collectively and individually, is God. That no separation exists between God and us or even that pesky mosquito. And even with that belief, I have a hard time with mosquitos.

I spent a lot of years trying to figure out what perfect was and then try to be it. In school it was easy: 100% on assignments and tests. Socially, it was far more complicated than that, and in retrospect I see that because I wasn’t going to meet any ideal in that spectrum, I sortof jumped off it. Exit, stage left. Which, paradoxically, put me in a more balanced relationship with the social aspects, but never did I try to achieve perfection in that arena. I guess I selected a few categories in which I had the potential to really shine and went for it. And maybe drove myself a little crazy.

Many years and an autoimmune disease later, I realized that in several key areas I was killing myself to achieve an imaginary goal with ever- changing and unreachable markers. Terrible idea. I’m glad my body brought it to my attention.

Now I cringe when I hear people say “perfect” much like Tucker doggedly insisted that even using it as a qualifier was both inaccurate and undesirable.

It’s a slippery slope, though. Josie’s last gymnastics meet a girl got a perfect score. It was a super big deal because that rarely happens (as Nadia Kominichi (sp) showed in I’m guessing the 1976 Summer Olympics). What if that girl had me as a parent? “Don’t worry about perfect, focus your attention on the joy of the sport.” She may well not have gotten a perfect score, and I’m certain it was quite satisfying. And fleeting.

Fleeting. Yeah, that’s a whole ‘nother subject. For example, the concept of the average American household having 2.6 children. So, if you’re going for average as your perfection, in real terms it doesn’t exist. But, even when it does exist, it’s fleeting. A fetus is only .6 of the way developed for a very short time. One day in March, you’re the average American family, but from that moment forward, notsomuch.

Believing that God is everything, everything, then, is perfect. It’s a pretty straightforward concept. Yet it doesn’t take much looking at the world in general or in literally anyone’s life to see that things are very far from “perfect.” But, that’s based on an ideal that cannot incorporate the fullness of the concept (Plato’s Universals).

I’ve come to believe that everything is perfect in a context I have yet to understand, and that in any of the contexts I can understand, perfection is nothing to seek. It is largely unattainable and fleeting when it is. And in a universe based on constant change, that, I think, is perfect.

What Do I Know?

“Very little,” is the answer to that question. I used to go around trying to collect knowing things so that I had all sorts of remarkable answers to that question. In fact, no one needed to ask the question. I would bask in interesting tidbits or insider information, or even just the proud egoic teen know-it-all in me that really thought I was acquiring some great stuff.

Now, I’m all about de-quiring. and In-quiring. Not much acquiring or requiring, thankfully. The less of those two, the better I feel. No question.

Brilliant people like Einstein knew more than I could ever hope to know and openly stated they knew a grain of sand of the beach of knowledge.

My favorite pastime was evaluating incoming information and how it stacked up to what I already knew. If it was in opposition, I could throw it out as “stupid,” if it was in alignment, I could pat myself on the back for already basically knowing it. All sorts of games. Mind games. Really wasteful uses of time and attention.

I find that the more open I am to rethinking what I used to “know” my world becomes more vibrant, more supportive, and more exciting. When I stick to the old structures I built, I am often angry and frustrated. Not a tough decision about which strategy I’d like to employ.

I see it with my kids all the time. I make assumptions about what they’ll do based on who they used to be. And they surprise me. And I’m thrilled. They are growing, evolving beings and pigeonholing them is just lazy. Not pigeonholing them makes life an adventure of discovery. Obviously a way better option.

I also find myself wanting things to go a certain way, as if I am the authority who should be obeyed. That doesn’t go so well. I see it with my health. I don’t want to do a certain intervention anymore. And I see conditions going in the direction that requires the intervention and just try to power through, employ other strategies, sing, dance and throw a circus, but in the end, I revert to the intervention. And I feel better. What was with that personal preference decision? Why do I do that? Even 3 years into Surrender as my primary practice, I am making ridiculous proclamations and trying to bend the world to my will. I may be nearing 50, but I am still a silly girl.

I have this fantasy that I will have gotten my “old age” over with in my 40’s. That gives me about 8 months. The fantasy involves Tai Chi and better habits resolving the physical issues, Surrender being such an enveloping practice the stereotypical “I like things the way I like them and that’s just that” mentality can’t get root, and I can reacquaint myself with vigor and energy in a way that’s been unavailable to me, but I can sense the potential.

I have an amazing role model for this in my mother, 81 and bopping around town like the prom queen. No medications, all sorts of interesting hobbies, a remarkable outlook on life and a great openness to adventure. She is absolutely a dynamo, with a positive outlook and open heart.

She developed this out of sheer force of will. When she was in her 40’s – oh the poor woman – 5 kids, dying husband, all kinds of drama. She had a permanent scowl when she was going into her 50’s. Not anymore, baby. When we brought it to her attention, she set herself on a course to change it and change it she did. And she really is one of the happiest people I know (how lucky am I?!). Funny how we emulate our parents even when we don’t recognize it. I am lucky I get to emulate her. That’s one of the few things I really know.