Monthly Archives: April 2019

Doing Nothing, Doing Everything

When the possibility of boredom no longer exists, one has found the ground of their being. 

As I walked this morning under the stars and into the awakening of first light, I became aware of the value of the time I’ve spent doing nothing in the last 15 years. They have without question been the most important hours of my life.

When I say doing nothing, I mean just that. Even to sit with the intention to quiet the mind is doing something. To be in Nature for the purpose of a hike is different, as John Muir said, than just sauntering along. With no intention but to be the moment.

Last night I was talking with someone I love. Her aversion to having a few hours after dinner and before bed with nothing to do stood out from the conversation. In her comment regarding it I could feel her fear. I felt sad at her missing out on what connects me to something greater.

She is not alone. The idea of being alone with oneself  without something to distract us from how we feel has made many in the television and movie industry very wealth indeed. It has sold many a book.

Why, Beloved, do you run from the stillness?
Why are you afraid to simply BE with your beautiful self, and Life as it is, in this Eternal Now moment?
There is nothing to fear here.
You are enough. Far more than enough. 

The conditioned mind says otherwise.
You have trained it to offer you endless distractions from your wounds.
To guide you to happy places.
This mind is a faithful servant.
Has it’s fear become a master?

One day there will be nothing left to do.
There will be no point in more thoughts explaining Life to yourself.
Beloved, you will find unending peace and freedom in this rest.

This waits for you Now.

It flows with every conscious breath.
It is the relief in accepting what is.
It is the divine embrace of self love.
It is the power and grace of authentic expression.

It is safe to be you. To feel yourself fully.
Deep down you know this.
Your pain is the space between here and there.
Deep down is an exhale away.

Stop. Let go. It’ll be alright.

The Universe as Love, as You, is waiting.

The irony of our not wanting to stop and be still is that the feeling we seek in all the speaking, doing and listening to others is right there in the spaces in between. Sure, it can be challenging at times. Stillness and silence do indeed offer a space for all we have not yet loved within ourselves and our experience to come up to be seen, felt and loved. But when we just let it be, without resistance and it’s explanations, bring it into the infinite healing power of Now.

You are the moment. As I wrote in the last post, it’s beyond amazing to really become aware of yourself as both the experience of Life and the space to witness it. Your body is mostly the empty space that is the space between all matter. It is the Unified Field, The One Consciousness, Source, Spirit or whatever name you want to give it.

When you get beneath your mind you can feel this. We all do, for moments here and there. And it’s wonderful. And unfamiliar to most of our personalities. So we retreat.

I couldn’t possibly be wired into that. It couldn’t all be perfect. I can’t be that powerful.

You are. I am. We are.

In first doing nothing, we will do everything as the Love we truly are.

boca chica sunset

 

 

Rewriting the Program

me & Arthur

I am so grateful to know the freedom beyond a deep fear of snakes. It was a visceral, primal fear. I could not even get close to them. The sight of them filled me with terror and aversion.

When I saw a man bringing his rescues (snakes people would likely have killed had he not relocated them off their property) to a public spot just outside HeartLight here in Uptown Sedona, I knew Life was offering me the opportunity to leap into my fear and in doing so find a greater expression of freedom.

I started with quiet docile ones like little Bruno in the video below, and then moved to more active corn snakes and gopher snakes. A small boa, and perhaps my favorite, a larger Yuma king snake named Arthur. He is the one in the picture.

 

It’s amazing how love fills the space fear leaves behind. Now I feel almost like I do with puppies or kittens. I feel affection and the desire to hold them with love.

As I mention in the video, I am finding that when I practice denying the subconscious response to one thing I fear, I can do the same more easily with other fears. When we do this we overcome hardwired parts of ourselves. We rewrite the program.

As soon as you are in a discussion with yourself about walking through fear, you’re in it. Now it’s the conscious mind arm wrestling with the subconscious. Only 5% of our mind is conscious. It will tire first in that match. If you don’t leap off that high dive right away, you may not at all, right?

You just gotta leap. No discussion. We all know the freedom that awaits us when we do.

 

#nolongerafraid  #freedombeyondfear  #anythingcanchange

The Answer is Simple

hard times

“How do you inspire or offer hope when you don’t feel inspired or hopeful yourself?

This was the question posed by a friend on FB the other day. This person is a living answer to his own question. A question that reveals a heart connected to Love’s desire to share what it has.

When he isn’t posting inspiring quotes and pictures, he tosses out a request for friends: tell me something good. He is very open about his struggles with depression, and has authored a book about his path back to happiness.

In doing this, in being authentic in his desire for encouragement, he offers others the opportunity to tap into their gratitude and share it. This raises their energy, even if just a little. Some answers are somewhat humorous or sarcastic. Others are deeper, coming from the place of authenticity the request itself has opened up.

All gratitude holds a higher vibration than both inspiration or hope. Gratitude reflects a greater measure of wholeness, as the energy of what we already have, instead of what we perceive we lack and thus hope for.

I write this because it is easy to read a quote like ‘Be the change you want to see in the world’ and get caught on a spiritual hamster wheel. Old programming filled with judgements around the “right” way to be can suppress our inner authenticity in challenging moments of Life experience. It is our freedom to be real when we are suffering that awakens the healer in everyone around us. Our pain gifts them compassion.

Life is so much simpler than I ever thought. As one still letting go of an identity grounded in self evaluation of my spiritual path, it is finally becoming safe to simply show up as me. To know myself as enough in any given moment.

you are good enough

I was asked a couple days ago what I thought my purpose in life was. There are so many answers I’ve had in the past. They have all carried a certain degree of heaviness. My answer at last felt simple, light and whole. To embody Love.

What does this mean? For starters we can’t give what we don’t have. It all begins with loving who we are. All of it who we are expressing, as a space of experience, responding to a beautiful but dense and challenging physical reality.

A space of experience. Stop and think about this for moment. You are both the experience of Life and the awareness of it. Can you accept the divinity of that?

To know oneself as the awareness within is one thing. To know this while unconditionally loving your unique and precious humanity is to truly be free. To embody Love is to accept the purpose and expression of your being human as well as the spark of self aware consciousness you are.

Days like today, Easter Sunday, acts in Sri Lanka born of judgement and it’s intolerance bring into question this notion. So does the Christian story this day celebrates. This idea that we can love all of our nature and just show up in complete authenticity. Violence and suffering bring up our oldest program: to be human is not enough.

It is important to remember where self love takes us, and where it doesn’t. Love sets us free. Free of the need for anything outside of us to be any particular way. When we hurt each other, we are not acting from a place of Love but a place of fear. A world of authenticity birthed by unconditional self love would not be violent and chaotic. Those conditions arise from fear.

The world today is more polarized than ever before. This outer conflict with Nature and each other is simply a mirror of our inner conflict with our nature. The only way to peace and harmony is so simple it has been overlooked.

Love yourself, and in doing so, embody Love.

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#youareenough #afreeheart #safetobeauthentic #loveistheanswer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sound. Serenity. Sedona.

IMG_0529

Last night it took a few minutes to fall asleep. Normally I’m the guy who takes two deep breaths, a full exhale, and I’m gone. But last night I felt the excitement of a being awake in a dream.

If you have followed this blog for awhile you know that for years I’ve had the desire to be able to offer other hearts a place to come and experience some of what has given me so much peace. A place to retreat from their lives and the known, and spend time in the serenity of Nature. To use what I have learned to guide others more deeply into the present moment and the Mystery that is their own awareness.

Unsurprisingly, this desire has unfolded in an unexpected way. The mind is limited in what it can conceive of. Our responsive Universe is not.

living room 2

The Airbnb listing below is for the guest room of the beautiful house I am living in here in Sedona. It is a unique location. Magnificent views are backdrop for the fruit trees in a private fenced backyard. Flowering plants, crystals, birds singing and nesting here; it all adds to the energy of the place.

There are also wonderful tools for creating deeply healing sound here, as pictured above. Having a session with me using these would be available to you. As would time out on the land, experiencing yourself there more deeply with guided breathwork and meditation. A hiker’s paradise, Sedona holds a unique and expansive energy one feels by simply walking the land and taking in the views.

So if a visit here calls to you, I would love to help you make the most of it. Check out the link below for more details and pictures. It’s almost always sunny in Sedona!

(Ok, the link below didn’t work when I first posted this. I think it’s good to go now. )

Click here for the listing

#visitsedona #sedonaretreat

 

 

Stars and More Stars

starry night and lake

Epic. Deep breath and a wow, huh?

We all know how wonderful it feels to be this guy. Or we can at least catch a little of the feeling from a picture like this.

So why don’t we end our days like this more often? What would life be like if we did?

Even if it’s cloudy, or there’s too much light pollution to see a whole lot of stars, ending our day with some time outside, alone with our breath, is a game changer. So is getting up before dawn to experience Life in this way.

What might it feel like, if for 3 consecutive days, you began and ended your day with 20 minutes outside under the stars? With only the peace and stillness of Nature and breath bookending your hours asleep.

Your phone is in airplane mode for the night. It’s just you, your breath and the fresh night air. If you live in the city, and there is too much light to see the stars, perhaps there is a park close by, or somewhere a radio free 5 min drive in the car gets you where it feels more like nighttime.

Just be there. No need to try any special meditation. Just be there, breathing in the fresh air. Walk slowly, eyes open, with nowhere to go but where you are. In every way, just be where you are. Physically and emotionally. Acknowledge how you feel and let yourself become still with it on the inside. Look up. Allow the expanse of what is above you deepen your presence. Listen. Not to the thoughts of your mind but to the Life coming and going from your lungs. Feel it embracing your heart.

Try to resist the urge to reach for a feeling, or an experience. Instead, let it find you. Grace, Love, Magic, Healing, Possibility….these things walk in through the open door of our authenticity. This isn’t a door we open. It’s a door we stop holding closed. You don’t have to reach for what the stars seem to hold. It’s in every breath you take. It’s in every cell of your body.

Let this time be the last thing you do, the last connection you make. Then go to bed. No checking the phone or computer. No TV. Then get up before dawn, without checking your phone, and do the same thing. Just 20 minutes. Get outside. Start your day the same way you ended it. If you get in bed by 9 getting up before 5 isn’t that hard. And getting in bed by 9 isn’t that hard when you’ve been up since 4:30.

If the first day feels like nothing more than 60 seconds of wonderful followed by 19 minutes of your mind reminding you of the rest of your life, not to worry. Just keep coming home to your breath. Keep looking up. Our stories feel a lot different with a bigger backdrop.

As much as you can, let go of any expectations or explanations around doing this. It is so easy to get in our own way. If this is new to you, your mind will resist. It will offer reasons this isn’t a good idea, as well as romantic notions of enlightenment as to why it is. Both are illusions.

It’s ok, thankfully you have a built in tranquilizer for the brain. Your own conscious breath. Just breathe. Just be with your self, and your Self as seen and felt all around you. Above and below you. Get your bare feet on the Earth if you can. Be aware of all 6 of your senses.

3 days. Less than an hour a day just before and after you sleep. How does that idea feel?

I have to warn you. If you do in fact do this, you might find there is no going back. It may have an effect on your life you can’t imagine living without. Perhaps not. Regardless, there is always the excitement of adventure in the doing of something new.

May that joy be yours, in any way that calls to you.

starry night sky

#belovedonearth  #underthestars #getoutside

 

 

 

 

A Greater Vision

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for,
And if you dare to dream of meeting
Your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
For love, for your dream,
For the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon.
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow,
If you have been opened by life’s betrayals,
Or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain,
Mine or your own,
Without moving
To hide it or fade it or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy,
Mine or your own,
If you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
Without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true.
I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself,
If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul.
I want to know if you can be faithless and therefore be trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see beauty
Even when it is not pretty every day,
And if you can source your own life
From its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure,
Yours and mine,
And still stand on the edge of a lake and shout to the silver of the full moon,
“Yes!”

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
From the inside
When all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone
With yourself,
And if you truly like the company you keep
In the empty moments.

~from The Invitation  by Oriah Mountain Dreamer

I read this introduction to the book of the same title a few years back. This soul-filled piece of writing found me again this morning when I searched for another epic poem, Marianne Williamson’s Our Deepest Fear. The site I clicked onto happened to be a personal growth site with a page displaying them together. How perfect.

An invitation indeed. This poem is a powerful wanting. It is a message from a place beyond the conditioned mind of the small self. It is a call to return home to a place most of us left behind when utter authenticity no longer felt safe. It is a call from behind the walls around our hearts, answered only from the same place.

It takes great courage to live in the real. To be powerfully human in our uniqueness.

Yes, powerfully human. The truth around who and what we are when we engage all of our potential has been coming at me from every angle of late. The terms human and humanity have been trodden on in most spiritual circles for centuries, seen only as the doormat at an entry way into something greater. Spirituality, and religion in particular, has created in me at least a sense of duality between the expression of physical form and the awareness behind it. That is merely a different flavor of the oldest dish we have ever served ourselves: there is something wrong with who we are. 

As the ego jumps up in protest, quickly bringing to mind and judging all the evidence of our potential for darkness, I invite you to reread the above poem, and ask yourself:  If this were what we asked of each other, if we were this honest, this authentic, this vulnerable; and by being so, this deeply connected with one another, would the world and it’s history tell the same story it does now? Would the fears that entrained us deeply enough to create societal classes, competition for resources and racial divisions have become our operating systems?

I was searching for the Deepest Fear poem because I woke up knowing I wanted to write something about Marianne Williamson, and her running a Presidential race. I don’t know Marianne personally, but I have listened to her speak and read enough of her work to recognize her as a soul who has answered the above Invitation. She has found and embraced the power of her own divine humanity. She has sat long enough with herself to recognize all parts of who she is, and to know the whisper of Love as different from the constant explanations of Fear.

marianne-williamson

I checked out her website as soon as I heard she entered the race. Her view on every issue is right there for you to see. Some of them will be called radical. What they are is authentic and honest. I’m not sure I agree with every single one of them myself, but I sure do love the utter transparency and conviction I feel there.

Personally, I don’t want another leader who talks of new ways of doing things. I want someone who knows a different way of being. Who is operating within themselves and with the collective from a place more expansive, creative and loving than our patterned belief systems.

I am encouraged, no matter what happens in 2020, by the kind of people already in the Presidential field. It is a reflection of changing energies. I heard Beto O’Rourke on an Oprah Super Soul Conversation, and fell in love with the guy. I’d be happy to vote for him as well. But I feel there is a depth of insight, born in the experience of expanded awareness, that Marianne holds within herself. She knows how to connect to the infinite possibility beyond the mind, and therefore holds a greater vision for human expression.

Is America ready for such a change? Such a shift? Ready to let go of it’s fears and trust Love to lead the way? Perhaps not. We won’t know unless it first clearly sees the choice. Until a new voice is heard. It would be great to see an expression of a new paradigm on the debate stage.

 

#belovedonearth #marianne2020