Sep 122013
 

Communing with GaiaAs I sit to write this today, a fresh breeze is blowing gently through the window. The wind chimes tinkle softly and I hear a songbird singing outside. The sun warms the soil and the air, feeding the plants with its light, and the little lizards poke out of their hiding spots and scramble across the warm, red earth.

Aren’t we just incredibly blessed to live on this beautiful planet?

Today, do yourself a favor and treat yourself to a conscious connection with the being that is this place; with Mother Earth, also known as Gaia.

It’s not hard to do and it’s surprisingly satisfying. All it really requires is your taking a moment to consciously connect with her.

Let me tell you about an experience of communion that’s been unforgettable.

One day, I found myself emotionally distraught over something.

I’m fortunate to live in the high desert, surrounded by gorgeous red rock mesas. So I went outdoors, where all around the base of the mesa which looms above our home are various sizes of rocks — from tiny pebbles to giant boulders.

I lay face-down on a boulder that was beckoning me and essentially did the steps I outline below.

I was almost shocked how accessible the actual LIFE of the place, of Gaia, was.

I felt her actual presence loving me, supporting me, healing me into an awareness of my wholeness.

Even that so-called inanimate rock was alive and loving me.

I just cried and cried – out of relief … love … connection … amazement.

It was cleansing, grounding,  and revitalizing.

It was remarkable.

First, Notice the Gifts

If you have access to nature, or even just to outdoors, that can help. But even if not, and even if you’re in the middle of a city, you can still do this easily.

It’s not a mental thing but you can prepare by noticing how everything around you has been a gift from her.

If you’re outdoors, it’s obvious.

If you’re indoors, notice that everything there is a gift of the earth as well. Take your furniture, for example. It’s made from wood from her living trees, upholstery from her living cotton plants, or if it’s synthetic it’s produced using oil that’s made from ancient living beings.

It’s hard not to feel grateful and appreciate how all of it is simply given to us by her.

Next, Take These Few Simple Steps

In that spirit of appreciation:

1. Close your eyes.
2. Imagine the sphere we think of as Earth.
3. Feel her support underneath you.
4. Feel her embracing you. Loving you.
5. Love and appreciate her as well.
6. Feel the exchange of love and appreciation.
7. Hold that connection for awhile.
8. Notice whether there are any messages communicated either direction.
9. Gently thank her for the connection.

Now, don’t just read this and think it’s too simple to prompt a meaningful experience!

You have to try it!

I think you’ll be amazed at how the presence of this magnificent earth can nourish and heal you, body and soul. :-)

Patti

Nov 302012
 

Eufeeling!Dr. Frank J. Kinslow has written a magnificent book called Eufeeling! The Art of Creating Inner Peace and Outer Prosperity. It’s about how you can use what he calls “Eufeeling” to enhance your life and your experience of life, no matter what your life situation.

As the subtitle states, it’s a way to create both inner peace and outer prosperity.

What You’ll Learn

The process hinges around being able to experience Eufeeling, a calm state of presence, and much of the focus is on teaching you how to do that. It’s a simple process, explained very well, and all you need to do is try it out and — most likely — to practice it.

If you will commit to practicing Eufeeling in your daily life, then this, in itself, will help you love your life, no matter what that consists of.

Life is not about trying to see things in a positive light. Life is the positive light.

~ Eufeeling!

But you also learn how to apply Eufeeling to particular applications or intentions. There’s a lot of excellent instruction about intention and what that means in this context. If you already practice some form of intention work, you may be surprised at Dr. Kinslow’s suggestions. Exactly how you place intention is an important aspect of the process and this was one of my favorite sections.

… We tenderly open our awareness to our [intention] and then watch as it gently kisses the surface of Pure Eufeeling. This is the magical moment, the flawless conception, when all of creation awakens to your desire.

~ Eufeeling!

Is that a breath-takingly beautiful quote, or what?!

The book then goes on to show you how to use it for specific applications, and not only for yourself, but for others. In particular, it covers emotional states, chronic illness, material wealth, and general problem solving.

He closes by beautifully elaborating on how and why our practicing such an art helps humanity in general. I agree with him that it’s important, meaningful work and also that time is of the essence.

Enjoyable and Rewarding

I was happy to see that this book is very well written. As a former engineer (software), I very much appreciate this type of top-down approach, first giving us context, and then getting into detail.

The book is also well-ordered, starting with the basic concepts (which he makes it a point to clearly define — very helpful), methodically building on them, and culminating with how to apply all that you’ve learned. There are exercises throughout so you are adept at each foundational step before you move on to applications that rely on them.

Dr. Kinslow is a master of analogy and metaphor. He has an impressive ability to make esoteric concepts easily accessible. I also appreciated his down-to-earth sense of humor that ran through the text like a luminous thread.

All-in-all, his engaging style makes for enjoyable and satisfying reading.

Yes, It Works!

As to the usefulness of what he teaches here: My experience is that it works!

I see this as a form of “consciousness technology” with similarities to Matrix Energetics as well as my own adapted process called Holographic Emergence™. The “philosophy” (i.e. understanding, art, and science) behind it is very similar to what I’ve been doing since 2007, so of course I personally took to it like a duck to water.

Also included, in an appendix, is concise instruction on using his “Quantum Entrainment Triangulation Technique”, the essence of one of his other books (so a great bonus). It’s quick and easy and very similar to the Two-Point as taught in Matrix Energetics, and I’ve especially been enjoying playing with this.

For someone already familiar with consciousness technologies, it will expand and enhance your practice. At the same time, he explains it all so beautifully that even a novice could pick it up immediately and see some remarkable results.

I did a lot of his exercises, applying them to real issues in my life, and I did see results. I’m still experimenting with it for all kinds of things, and it’s more than satisfying … it’s fun!

Eufeeling! is Highly Recommended

I loved this book, and I highly recommend it. I honestly think everyone in the world could benefit from it and should read and practice it now! ;-)

If you play with these ideas and exercises like he suggests, I know you’ll be amazed. (And if you do, I’d love for you to leave a comment and let me know how it was for you!)

Stay Tuned for More

Unfortunately, I can’t say as much as I’d like in one short review. Stay tuned for more posts about this process with a lot more detail, beginning with how it compares with my process of Holographic Emergence™ (and perhaps with Matrix Energetics).

I’ll also share more about my experience with it, including how I applied it and what results I noticed.

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from Hay House Publishing for review purposes, and true to form, they encourage complete honesty in our reviews. But rest assured that no matter what, any reviews on this site reflect my honest evaluation.

Until next time, thanks for reading!

Patti

Have you read “Eufeeling!” or tried any of Dr. Kinslow’s techniques? Do you have any questions about the book? Either way, I’d love to hear! Please leave your comment below.


Want to try an Emergence session — for FREE?

Then sign up for my newsletter to qualify and be notified of our next free group Emergence session (aka “Activation”).

Of course, you can always get your own private Emergence session too. ;-) For more information, see my Holographic Emergence Sessions™ page.

Nov 022012
 

Life as a Doorway to the Field“Death is not the opposite of life. Life has no opposite. The opposite of death is birth. Life is eternal.”

~ Eckhart Tolle, Stillness Speaks

I LOVE this quote. It’s crossed my mind often since first reading it.

And it’s come to mind most recently after losing our sweet lab, Ollie, especially because I had a lot of synchronicities that made me aware — at a deep level — of the same thing.

Life Abounds

It started just a few days after his death.

I was in the back yard and as I looked up I saw 2 mourning doves walking around the bush from his grave. Now, I never see mourning doves back there, even rarely see them at all around here. And that they should come right from his grave while I was there … Well, let’s just say I noticed.

Shortly after that, I was walking over to visit his grave and out hopped a bunny from behind it. It came right over to me, within about 3′, and stopped right at the grave. Again, I took notice.

Even funnier, the next morning I got up and there was the bunny lying in the backyard, all stretched out, right where Ollie used to lay all stretched out!

This was odd enough but this happened several days in a row.

This was getting a little strange, even for me!

Over the next week or two, the quote just kept coming back to mind.

And it seemed that everywhere I went, there was Life.

There were lizards, snakes, birds (ravens, baby flycatchers that hatched and flew the coop, and another mourning dove that flew right in front of me), a big moth that sat right on the post near me on the front porch while I worked, and of course, bunnies galore — to name a few.

Life Goes On

All of this made me sooo aware that Life goes on.

And I don’t mean “life goes on” like your life situation has to continue.

I mean Life just goes on! There is no end to it.

And I did revel in the fact that Ollie was still around. I felt him, not only as his presence, but as Life itself!

I recently did a book review of Dying To Be Me by Anita Moorjani about her near-death experience (NDE). But did you know I had my own NDE? I did … Not as involved as Anita’s, but enough for me to get a taste of what happens when we die. And I can tell you, Life goes on! It’s amazing.

Life = The Field of Magic & Miracles

So you may wonder what this has to do with Emergence.

Well, experiencing the Life that you are — even your life force (which is a little bit of an abstraction of it but still a good stepping stone) — is a doorway to the state of consciousness you enter when you “do” Emergence.

It’s your conscious connection to a powerful field of magic and miracles.

In some ways, the state is impossible to speak of, but there are a lot of pointers that can help lead you to it.

This is one of them. (Note: For some instruction on experiencing your life force and using it to strengthen your immune system or even heal, see remedy #16 in Kiss Your Cold Goodbye Fast With These 20 Natural and Vibrational Remedies.)

And once you’re adept at entering the state … at being … and being life consciously, with awareness — the rest is a piece of cake. ;-)

The truth is: you don’t have a life, you are life, the One Life, the one consciousness that pervades the entire universe and takes temporary form to experience itself as a stone or a blade of grass, as an animal, a person, a star or a galaxy.

Can you sense deep within that you already know that? Can you sense that you already are That?

~ Eckhart Tolle, Stillness Speaks

Thanks for reading, and here’s to you — as Life emerging!

Patti

 

 

As usual, I’d love to hear what you have to share about this topic, or any questions you might have. Just use the comment box! Thank you!


Want to try an Emergence session — for FREE?

Then sign up for my newsletter to qualify and be notified of our next free group Emergence session (aka “Activation”).

Of course, you can always get your own private Emergence session too. ;-) For more information, see my Holographic Emergence Sessions™ page.

Oct 252012
 

Dying To Be Me: My Journey from Cancer, to Near Death, to True HealingDying To Be Me by Anita Moorjani is one of my favorite books of all time, and believe me, I’ve read a lot of books.

There is so much more value here than you might expect from a book about a near-death experience (NDE). You will find it not only comforting with regard to death (your own or those you love) but it’s an affirmation of life, and inspiring in general.

Just as important, you’ll find it helpful in many practical ways.

Is This Book for You?

You can benefit from this book if:

  • You or someone you know is facing death
  • You’re grieving the death of a loved one, including a pet
  • You’re facing illness of any kind, serious or otherwise
  • You’re experiencing challenging emotions such as depression or lack of interest in life
  • You want to feel more whole, healthy, and vibrant
  • You simply want to feel better in general … happier, more at peace, more purposeful, etc.
  • You would like an enlightened way to understand or experience life and your place in it

As you can see, I would recommend this book to anyone and everyone. And it’s a book that I envision myself reviewing periodically for my own benefit.

How It Unfolds

Anita begins by setting the stage with a brief biography of relevant parts of her life. She describes the experience of becoming incapacitated with terminal cancer, and I love that she describes its unfolding not only on the outside but from “the inside” as well.

But fairly quickly, she jumps right into the NDE. This is the part I want everyone to read who has ever lost anyone to death, or is facing it themselves. The way she describes it is breath-taking and eye-opening. It’s beautiful, actually, and you’ll never forget it.

And just as extraordinary is the explanation of how she then “came back” and proceeded to completely heal. Yes, completely! And how she learned to allow for this “unfolding of miracles” as she puts it.

Life Even Through Death

So it’s not just a book about death and what happens at that moment.

It’s even more a book about life; about who and what you are; about healing and wholeness … and about allowing your whole world to transform.

It’s fascinating to read how you — as your essence — live even through death. And much more freely than you probably are now!

So what does that mean?

How can you live with that same freedom even as you live your life?

Insights and Practices

In her quest to help others through her experience, she shares her thoughts about how you can apply what she’s come to know.

From her expanded understanding of reality, she shares in a way that you can apply in everyday life:

  • Why she got sick and how she healed
  • How to connect with the soul of your magnificence
  • Experiencing profound freedom in your life
  • Trusting the wisdom of the infinite self
  • What it means to Be (allow) vs. Do — and thus experience vast inner peace and a beautiful flow in your life

You’ve really got to read it yourself since there’s so much more to it than I could even put words to; pretty apropos given its expansive nature.

And I’m sure you’ll find your own gems within it, probably new and different insights and practices each time you read it, depending on your perspectives at that time.

It’s got a richness and depth to it that I enjoy applying and know I will for years to come.

Also Recommended …

Soon after reading the book, I came upon her audio Deep Meditation for Healing. Just like the book, I love it. Anita does a beautiful job of taking you into a relaxed, receptive state and reminding you of your magnificence, freedom, and power. You’ll actually feel it and come away more whole and with a new perspective.

It doesn’t replace the book, but it’s an awesome adjunct to it, or it could even stand on its own.

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from Hay House Publishing for review purposes, and true to form, they encourage complete honesty in our reviews. Still — no matter what — you can always rest assured that any reviews on this site reflect my honest evaluation.

Until next time, thanks for reading!

Patti

 

 

Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Would love to hear in the comments. :-)

Jul 162012
 

In preparing for this week’s (free!) group Holographic Emergence Session™ where we will activate our creative process, I’ve been considering what the creative process means to me.

I keep coming back to this one simple idea that seems to form a foundation of how it works.

Because it will form the basis of our activation this week, and because it’s a useful concept in any case, I want to share it with you now.

Magnetic and Dynamic

Think of something you’ve produced from start to finish. Something you’ve conceived of, taken action on, and released out into the world.

No doubt it originated in an idea. This is the “magnetic” part.

And then it moved along a channel on its way to manifestation, which is the “dynamic” part.

I like the terms magnetic and dynamic to represent these concepts but a few other related words and concepts are:

Magnetic Dynamic
receive project
female male
feminine masculine
mother father
goddess god
moon sun
venus mars
right brain left brain
intuitive rational
holistic analytical

 

So in the context of creating, the magnetic can be thought of as getting in touch with our light, and the dynamic as actually expressing it.

If you look at the creative process as a timeline with the beginning being the initial conception (magnetic), and the endpoint being the final form, it’s as if there were a channel of energy moving the creation from its beginning all the way to its completion and release (dynamic).

Both parts of the process need to be operating well for creation to take place seamlessly.

There are many ways for us to enhance our ablities in both areas. I’ve already written about quite a few of them on this blog and I’ll continue to do so since the process of Emergence uses both of them, especially the magnetic.

Being conscious and aware of how you operate magnetically and dynamically can go a long way toward streamlining your own process. You can look objectively at where you may have weaknesses to strengthen, or strengths to optimize.

Integration or the Dance of Creation

Also important is how you integrate the two.

To really move something along the channel requires being in constant touch with both the inspiration or imaginal (magnetic) and the practical considerations and actions (dynamic).

It doesn’t just happen once. There are really a number of mini-cycles that take place within the over-arching conception-to-release cycle.

I like to think of it as a dance between our magnetic and dynamic. It’s an art, not a science, as one needs to constantly respond to the other. And in my experience, that’s what creation is about!

Creating requires that you keep your idea dancing along the channel as you help it manifest into form.

And that’s where the fun is, and the life!

That’s how and when you feel that life force coursing through you and you feel fully alive!

Dancing in the Light

A lot of the stumbling blocks I’ve run into are related to the dance.

If you’ve had difficulty manifesting your creations, you can shine some light on your dance steps.

Ask yourself if there’s anywhere in this channel where you regularly get hung up.

Some possible stumbling blocks are:

  • fears
  • distractions
  • boredom
  • “shoulds” that squeeze the joy out of your process
  • lack of information (without enough drive to push through)
  • any kind of “clog” (within you or “out there”)
  • things just stop
  • your focus dwindles off
  • any deterrent that you don’t have the motivation to examine or get past
  • you lose interest along the way
  • you just move on (and you may not even notice)
  • you make it so “big” that you get overwhelmed
  • you never even start it
  • lack of trust in what your intuitive/creative conception
  • too much “editing”
  • discouragement
  • depression
  • apathy

Ah, the list could go on and on.

But here’s something worth doing.

Simply bring the stumbling block into the light. Make it conscious to yourself. Become aware of it.

It’s an important first step in moving past it and is sometimes all that’s needed!

Join Us For the Creation Activation!

Another way to keep (or get) your creative process flowing is to participate in a Holographic Emergence™ session.

And you can try one free this week by joining us in our group session — our Creation Activation!

Let’s clear the way so we can create spectacularly!

We’ll enhance the magnetic and dynamic, and get the two dancing together to our own music.

That’s the focus of this week’s activation. (An “activation” is my name for a group Holographic Emergence session. If you want to know more about what an activation is, you can see my “Spring Activation” announcement.)

Join us! It’s FREE and it’s taking place this Thursday at 10:30a MT.

At that time, the Sun and Moon will be “dancing” together in Cancer (the Moon’s sign) in Pushyami, a very auspicious nakshatra. Next month they’ll both be in Leo (the Sun’s sign), a very creative part of the zodiac. Let’s get ready so we can take advantage of that time that is so supportive of creating!


This free activation is for newsletter subscribers only.

If you’re already a subscriber, you’ll find the registration link in the latest newsletter (from last Thursday — check your inbox).

If you’re not yet a subscriber, you can subscribe here, and you’ll be emailed a link to the newsletter that has the registration link.

Finally, if you’re a regular reader but really really don’t want to subscribe to my newsletter, just send me an email and ask me to register you. That works too.


And now: Do you have any tips about ways to enhance or streamline our creative process? As always, I’d love to hear ‘em! Thank you!

Jun 072011
 

Something about the idea that your life might be snatched from you at any moment makes you consider what it means to you.

A little while back I mentioned I was in the midst of a health scare. Well, I’m thrilled to say I’m fine! Thank-you to those of you who wrote (in the comments and privately) to offer your support. I so much appreciate it!

A Healing Journey

During the past month, while I was in limbo on this subject, I’ve had quite the journey.

And even though I wasn’t ill (as it turns out), I find myself more whole now than I was before.

And I continue to heal, from wounds of all kinds.

I’m eager to tell you about some of what’s transpired and the significant gifts I’ve been given. Because they’re available to you, too, if you decide to accept them.

I’ll do this over a number of posts (and/or maybe an e-booklet, I haven’t decided).

And for now, here’s one of them. Enjoy.

A Moment of Irritation

Last week, my husband made a call to a store to ask about something. The woman transferred his call to a different department. It rang and rang. Eventually she came back on, and he explained that he just had a simple question and wondered if she could help him.

He hears a huge sigh from the other end of the phone. Eventually he got his question answered, but here’s where our story takes off. At the sigh.

It struck me. She’s getting paid to help people. Okay, maybe she has a more defined role within that job description, but when you work with customers, you help people.

Embrace The Moment

What if, instead, she had said/thought “How can I help you?” with a true desire to help and with some amount of enthusiasm? Sincerely shifting her focus to be of help and embracing that new direction as exactly where she was supposed to be in that moment?

I’m not judging her. We’ve all been there, at least I have. Stressed. Behind. Irritated at those things life throws at us that are not on our agendas.

But I’ve got a new appreciation for the saying “Life is what happens while you’re making other plans.”

I know she’d have had a much more pleasant moment (and so would my husband and possibly other callers) had she been able to turn on a dime and embrace the moment as it was. Even if she still needed to delegate him off to someone else, it would have a whole different energy than the chore that it seemed to be.

That’s Nice, But…

Probably we’ve all thought about this idea, and even applied it to some degree.

But if you’re like me, you often slip back into old patterns, and before you know it you’re back at your agenda and getting annoyed at anything that pulls you from it.

The difference is that this time I haven’t done that.

Why? Well…

I think it’s because I’ve gained a new appreciation for life. I’ve been reminded in a big way of how precious it is.

And this kind of thing is exactly what life is.

And I love life.

I’m tired of fighting against it in any way, shape, or form. I really don’t want to do that any more. Lord knows I’ve already done my share of it, plus some.

Life Is a Gift

When I was 29, I got clean and sober. I could so easily have died many times over while I was out there using whatever various and sundry drugs came my way. But I didn’t. I don’t know why. It was grace. A gift. A second chance. A third, fourth, and a fifth (pun intended).

My life today is all extra! Free!

And so is yours, if you think about it.

It’s all icing on the cake.

So, I’m done complaining about the icing on my cake.

I don’t care if it’s too sweet, if it’s chocolate ganache when I want vanilla butter-cream, or vanilla when I want chocolate, or whatever. Okay, maybe I do care, but that’s normal. That’s a preference. Preferences are also a delectable part of life.

I am watching myself bid goodbye to the futile exercise of resisting what is.

Resistance feels yukky and I don’t want to waste my life feeling yukky.

We’re alive, for God’s sake! Alive! And Life happens for us, not to us. I mean, what a precious gift to be walking this earth right now.

Seriously.

Rediscover the Joy

Here’s an exercise that can help this way of being become more automatic.

Watch for moments when you find yourself feeling:

  • irritated
  • annoyed
  • impatient
  • stressed
  • angry
  • resentful
  • fed up

(It works with any emotion but these are the easiest to start with.)

When you notice you’re feeling that way, ask yourself:

  1. What if I just wasn’t here (on earth, alive) at all? Which is the better alternative?
  2. What if all this is “extra” life? A bonus? A free gift? (Dessert, if you will ;-) ?)
  3. What if nothing has to be a certain way, and I’m just here to enjoy the experience of it and experience the joy of it?
  4. How would I feel about this situation then?

It doesn’t mean you aren’t supposed to feel how you feel. Feeling is a part of your energy body and is a great indicator of what’s going on at other levels of your being.

And it doesn’t mean that you don’t make note of the discomfort and go about changing the situation if it makes sense to do so.

But if you sincerely ask and answer those questions, you’ll find it much more easy to embrace that situation fully and to move forward from there.

You’ll no longer resist or fight it, but instead, you’ll be in the flow of it. In the flow of your own life as it is.

And then comes the magic.

Your emotion will lose its charge. It will bend and shift a little — or maybe even a lot.

Everything becomes just kind of amazing. Everything.

And you’ll be able to embrace your life as though you had chosen it. (Because, of course, you have.)

You’ll truly enjoy it, all the way down to your toes.

And maybe best of all — at least for us cake lovers? You’ll realize that you do, indeed, get to have your cake and eat it too. And you get to love each and every bite.

Your Turn

Please let me know how this works for you. I’m very curious if I’ve managed to home in on and communicate the mindset that has made such a difference for me.

Or maybe you have variations on these questions or altogether different ones that help you more. Please share!

If you enjoyed this post, please share it with your friends on Twitter and Facebook. Want more? Click here to subscribe. Thank you!

May 232011
 

Dying’s not a sin; not living is.

Jack Lemmon’s character Jake in the movie Dad

I’m in the midst of a bit of a health scare, and have been finding myself examining just what this thing called life actually is, and what it means to me. Of course, I’ve done this before, but situations like this (and on the tails of just having lost my sweet Jasmine) bring a sudden raw clarity about how precious and fleeting our lives are that just isn’t always there otherwise.

On Roses and Poo

We’ve all heard the expression “Stop and smell the roses”. This is great advice. Some of us have gotten really good at it, too.

The problem comes when we get a whiff of poo. I have yet to hear the expression “Stop and smell the poo.” And just for the record, I’m not exactly suggesting that.

But what I am suggesting is that you do stop and appreciate that you can smell the poo. (And the roses too, I suppose. ;-) )

Now, Law of Attraction people (of which I am one, to a degree) would say that the poo provides contrast so you can become more aware that you want roses. That you don’t have to settle for poo but instead can attract roses. This may be.

Life and Its Content

But even at best, the Law of Attraction still only addresses the content of your life. As fun as it may be to learn how to attract roses instead of poo, you’re still just playing in a world of manifestation. Of content.

And by content, I mean everything that appears to be other than your unchanging true nature, your essence. That includes your thoughts, emotions, psychological makeup, energy body, physical body, etc. Even these that seem so close are content.

And life itself is bigger than just content. Much bigger.

The real thrill is learning how to relate to that content so that you can appreciate the richness of it all. All of it. Even the poo.

To be really alive, no matter what.

A poo-free life of roses sounds nice. But even if possible, would it be? Really? Would life be anywhere near as interesting with no challenges, no “negatives”, no poo?

Embrace It All

By far, the best practice I’ve run across (and I’ve run across plenty) in this regard was discovered by John Sherman of River Ganga.

The simple practice he teaches pulled me out of the quicksand of what was becoming an alarming depression after a few huge blows that left me gasping for air.

The need to keep a distance from your own life, the need to maintain a wary watchfulness over what’s coming and going in your own life … that need vanishes. It just goes away.

And life is revealed to be what it’s always been, which is an endlessly challenging, rewarding adventure that is deeply interesting in its own right; that is unpredictable, wondrous; that consists of problems and solutions, desires and aversions that come and go, that have no effect other than to capture our interest.

John Sherman, A Worldwide Meeting – March 12, 2011

And as I continue to do “the looking” as he calls it, my relationship with this fascinating thing called life continues to improve.

John’s simple approach is radical and powerful, and he is a generous and humble man. I can’t recommend him enough.

And if you go to his site, I’d love to hear what you think.

The Privilege of Life

On a related note, my sweet, 79-years-young friend Christopher Foster of The Happy Seeker is launching his course today titled “How to Look (and Feel) 10 Years Younger in 4 Weeks”. Christopher has a beautiful spirit and much experience and wisdom about how to fully embrace life.

But aging isn’t an enemy. And it doesn’t need to be a drag. It’s a privilege, rightly.

Christopher Foster (from his new course)

I was lucky to be able to review his course materials and can tell you that if you actually do this course you will come away with useful insights and new habits that can make a marked improvement in how you experience life — no matter what your age.

I just know you’ll love his simple yet profound wisdom, and this world will be a better place because of his sharing of it.

And while you’re at it, check out his interview today on our mutual friend Tess’s inspiring blog The Bold Life.

If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe, and share it on Twitter and with your friends. Thank you!

Apr 232011
 

Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that flow,
I am the sunlight on my own grave,

I am a gentle autumn rain,
I am the swift uplifting rush
of quiet birds in circled flight.

Do not stand at my grave and cry.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there I did not die.

Lizzie West:  “Prayer”

I’ve found some comfort in listening to this evocative and hauntingly beautiful song these past few days.

3 days ago, my husband and I made the decision to help Jasmine, our sweet 13-year old boxer, take leave of her pain-wracked body. When she was young she could run like the wind, and we hope that’s what she’s doing again. She so loved it!

Lately we’d been working with the vet trying different pain meds for what we thought was an intensification of her life-long arthritis, but nothing seemed to help.

We found out Tuesday that she had bone cancer and that the already constant pain would only continue to get worse.

We made an appointment for the next day and brought her home for one last night so we could all have a little love-fest and say our goodbyes.

Of course we were and are heartbroken, but there was no question it was time. It’s so hard to take the life of anyone or anything, especially a beloved family member (which she definitely was). But in this case I actually felt some relief being able to help provide her with a release from her suffering. I am so grateful for the ability to do that, and for the loving manner in which our vet and her assistants handled everything.

The Initial Death Experience

When I was in my 20′s, I had a near-death experience. I was right on the brink of departing permanently, yet obviously, still had enough connection to my body to be able to choose to stay. (And it was a choice.)

But the point I want to make here is that it was such a liberating experience! Words cannot describe how expansive and freeing it was to move out of my body and let go, and I was not even in a painful body.

I knew for that brief moment that everything was perfectly fine. And not just there in the spirit world, but even here in the physical realm. Everything. Perfect. Fine. There was no stress, no tension, no anything but bright freedom and goodness.

My life had been so terribly heavy by contrast.

Still, I did decide to “come back”, in fact it was a little difficult to actually do it and I thank my lucky stars I was able to (it was a close call).

I didn’t get so far away as some who actually see other beings and go to “the light”. But it was enough to give me a taste of the experience of dying.

Remembering that was so helpful to me as we watched Jasmine go. I just knew that she was flying free at long last, just as I had done that day. That she was free of her crippling pain. Free of what she obviously held as her serious responsibility of taking care of us even while debilitated. Free and at ease. Liberated. Happy? I hope so.

Luminarias (a New Mexico tradition) on Jasmine's grave

A Goodbye, and a Hello

And so I know that even as we say goodbye to this awesome, sensual life experience here on this beautiful planet with all our fellow creatures, we are — at the same time — entering into another level of what can only be thought of as life as well.

Over the days we prepared for our goodbyes, I was struck by how many times I noticed signs of new life. New buds on the newly transplanted tree. Bright, lime-green leaves popping out on all the large trees along the road. Little flowers blooming even in the sand of this high desert.

I also notice that little birds keep appearing in the oddest of places, and every so often I hear new birdsongs that I haven’t heard in almost a year.

And today the hummingbirds have arrived for the season. How perfect is that?

New Birth, Resurrection, Renewal

And so on that note I wish you a Happy Easter. I hope you get to experience the vibrant sense of renewal that this holiday — this holy day — brings.

And just like the little hatchling of the symbolic Easter egg, may you feel the wonder and vigor of being born anew.

Even if, like us, you’re experiencing some sorrow or loss, may you also experience the sense of newness that that very same transition often brings with it if you but pay attention. For they are two sides of the same coin, after all.

And isn’t it just all a part of the richness of this thing called life? Precious, every bit of it.

If you enjoyed this post, please retweet and share it with your friends. Thank you!

Jan 052011
 

“We’re here to live this storm of wild wonder that is the unfolding of phenomena within our minds, within our consciousness. And when the fear of it goes, then our reception of it is wondrous beyond belief.”

John Sherman, at a Worldwide Online Meeting, Dec. 18, 2010

A few nights ago, I was kneeling on the living room floor with our two dogs as they vied for and got my full attention. The little old slobbery boxer nuzzled under one arm while the goofy, angora-soft lab pushed his way under the other. Multi-colored Christmas lights sparkled around the window, and the hauntingly beautiful, other-worldly music of Cirque du Soleil’s Saltimbanco filled the room.

Suddenly I found myself having an experience of rapture. Tears rolled down my cheeks and I felt that movement around my heart. You know the feeling –  that humming like there’s an earthquake starting in there? I could barely contain myself.

I was simply and excruciatingly thrilled to be alive. Intensely and unreservedly alive. And every cell in my body was bursting with the wonder of it.

Don’t you just love it when you feel such appreciation for the gift of being alive?

Embrace the Storm of Wild Wonder

It’s not that I was happy because I have my precious dogs, am in a warm & cozy house, am married to the love of my life, or any/all of the obviously positive gifts that have been bestowed upon me.

I was happy even though I don’t have a fancy house, I lost my life saving a few years ago, I’m a basket case when it comes to being productive, and despite all the apparently difficult or challenging situations that have presented themselves.

As far as I could tell, I was happy because I was saying yes to it — to all of it — fully and completely. I was momentarily allowing myself to fully embrace life without the fear that is so often lurking around in the nooks and crannies. I was without the often-present sense that I am somehow at stake here. I wasn’t keeping life at arm’s length for fear that I would be hurt. I wasn’t judging some things as good and others as bad.

This means saying yes to the adventure. For me right now that’s to the launching of a brand new career at the ripe old age of 56. For you, of course, it’s whatever comprises your adventure; those things that excite you and challenge you at the same time.

But at an even deeper level, we say yes to trusting enough in the now to let go of control (as if we ever had control anyway).

We say yes to being alive in a world where everything changes every minute and every second. Where nothing is ever the same from one blink of the eye to the next. Where the unknown looms hugely in front of us, and there are no guarantees.

We say yes to allowing the living, breathing being that we are to be fully alive and to shine its light gloriously in each and every moment.

Dissolve the Fear

Of course this exhilarating fearlessness occurs in our lives from time to time. But isn’t it always rather fleeting? Lately, it’s becoming much less so for me, and more and more a part of who I am.

I’m sure that’s in large part because just over a year ago I discovered a simple – dirt simple – process that has been slowly but surely dissolving the fear, just as promised.

This fear-dissolving process consists of a simple act of looking. Looking at yourself. And I don’t mean psychologically or emotionally. I don’t even mean spiritually. I mean looking at who or what you are at your core. The simple nature of you.

And you don’t even have to see who or what you are, or understand it. You just have to look. And if you do this periodically, then over time the fear melts away.

Is that amazing or what?

I’ll continue to share on this blog what it feels like to have the existential fear of life gradually disappear, and the significant impact it’s had on my experience of life.

I’ll also share more about how you can do it even though I’ve already said it all (yes, it really is that simple).

For now though, if you’re interested in learning more, you can hear it from the proverbial horse’s mouth at River Ganga Foundation. John and Carla Sherman offer a bounty of information in the form of transcripts, audios, videos, and their book Look at Yourself.

I’ve been a spiritual aspirant all my life yet this is a whole new paradigm from anything I’ve ever come into contact with. I highly recommend you check it out.

What are you saying yes to, or what might you want to say yes to that you’ve not? Please share!

If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe, and share it on Twitter and with your friends. Thank you!

Nov 232010
 

We’ve all heard the phrase “count your blessings” and probably most of us do that quite often.

What we don’t always realize is that we’re neglecting to count some of our best ones because they’re tucked away in places we don’t think to consider.

If we take even a few moments to look we can find some of our most precious treasures buried among our discards. We quickly or even unconsciously judge certain things or experiences to be useless, inferior or even bad, and we toss them away, out of sight, out of mind.

We forget to notice the silver lining.

Gifts from Tragedy

Just last night, I heard of the death of a former classmate and old friend. He died of a sudden heart attack. This was sad enough but it came on the heels of the death of another classmate just a few weeks ago. Both cases are sad in their own way, and although I hadn’t seen one of them in many years, I still felt the loss.

Yet right along with the sadness of his death came a deep appreciation for the fact that I get to be alive. I mean, I’m alive! How cool is that?

If not for this tragedy,  I wouldn’t be experiencing my aliveness to the extent that I am this moment. In fact, I probably wouldn’t be thinking about or appreciating it at all.

And so, this new-found appreciation is a gift of this tragedy.

So this was one example, which just happens to be related to someone else’s misfortune. We easily gain new awareness of the blessings in our own lives when we notice how difficult life is for someone else, including many across the world.

More Hidden Gems

But there is also a benefit to considering our own tragedies and our own difficulties.

For hidden within them are deep and precious gifts.

I can say without a doubt that my most profound blessings have been borne of difficulty. And often the most trying situations bear the greatest gifts. They’re not all in the past, either. There are ongoing challenges, too, that are leaving little gifts in their wake, some I’m sure I haven’t even noticed yet.

The Discovery Process

One of the ways to spirit them out so we can avail ourselves of what they have to offer is to consider these questions and see if they reveal themselves. Some, if not most, are gifts not only to us but to others as well.

Here’s an exercise you can do:

Think of one major difficulty you’ve had, or something you’re going through now.

Got it?

Ok, now, go through these questions one by one with that experience in mind.

For any one situation, most of the questions will not apply. When that’s the case, just move on to the next question.

But there will probably be a handful of questions that will give you pause, and you will see that something new and wonderful entered your life when all you saw at the time was something that you just wanted to get rid of.

And if you have the time, take that moment to explore that question further in whatever way makes sense.

And now, may you discover some gems. :-)

  1. What did you learn that you are using to this day? Would you have learned it without that experience?
  2. Did you develop new skills that you benefit from, share, or enjoy?
  3. Did you become a better person? Did you discover or strengthen a part of your character that has been of value?
  4. Did you have to learn to ask for help? Was a new friendship developed because of that?
  5. Did anyone else benefit from what you went through?
  6. Were you able to help others in similar situations because of your experience?
  7. Did you discover new resources? Or friends you didn’t know you had?
  8. Did you let go of something that was not good for you, even if painful or disorienting at the time?
  9. Did you develop a new perspective on what’s good and what’s bad?
  10. Do you have a new set of values that feels better?
  11. Have you gained compassion and/or a more open heart?
  12. Have you learned how to let go of resentments, or to not develop them in the first place?
  13. Did you have the rug pulled out from under you, only to eventually land in a better place?
  14. If this was a loss of some sort, did something new and wonderful move into your life to fill the empty space that wouldn’t have been there otherwise?
  15. Have you learned how to let go of things when called for?
  16. Do you find any benefit to the impermanence of things? Does it give you an appreciation for things in the moment that you might not have had otherwise?
  17. Did you discover a different apparent source, or a new kind of flow? Is there less fear?
  18. Were you disillusioned? Do you have a new clarity about things, a new realism?
  19. Have you had a shift in your reality? A paradigm shift in what’s meaningful?
  20. Did you discover that you are okay no matter what?

You can repeat this as often as you’d like with any difficult situation.

Do you feel a little more blessed than when you started this exercise?

This exercise could easily include more questions. This set is subjective based on my experiences. I’m certain you have your own list and your own unique blessings that have come from your own difficulties as well. You can always add to it or replace questions as you see fit.

And of course, a few of these things may enter our lives even without difficulties, but it’s been my experience that difficulty is a sure catalyst for tremendous growth.

I dare say that without challenges, life wouldn’t be nearly so rich as it is.

Do you have any questions you’d like to add to this list? Or gifts you’ve gained from what felt like an unredeemable situation at the time? We’d love to hear.

If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe, and share it on Twitter and with your friends. Thank you!

Oct 142010
 

Whatever could toilets and sacred moments possibly have in common, you ask?

A lot, actually, and your day will be all the better for knowing what. I promise!

Have you been appreciating how profoundly precious life is lately? If you’re like me, you forget every now and then.

Well, here’s a beautiful story that might jog your memory periodically, at least for awhile while it’s fresh in your mind. And maybe, like me, for long afterward.

Today I read a post by Kara of Conduit of Joy! that I found very touching. It in turn reminded me of something I’d read by Denise Linn that I still think of often, even though I first read it 8 months ago.

Essentially Denise shares what transpired between her and a friend who had just received the devastating news that she only had about 5 more days to live. (And I think I have problems?!)

I would not be able to do the story justice by piece-mealing it here… I think you would love reading the whole thing yourself (it’s short and quick, and don’t miss her p.s.) But I will share two potent quotes that I’ve taken away from it that enhance my life whenever I am fortunate enough to remember them.

In speaking of her friend:

“She said that she has realized that her entire life she’s been more afraid of living than of dying…”

WOW. Well. I can identify with that one. Can you? But it doesn’t really make sense to live that way, does it?!

And her friend said of knowing she only had a few more days to live:

“It makes every moment precious. When I go to the toilet, I know that there is only a limited number of times that I will be able to do that . . . and it makes it a ’sacred toilet moment’. When I go to sleep, this makes it a ’sacred sleeping moment’. Every bit of food, every conversation, and every moment . . . no matter how seemingly mundane, is precious. I’m cherishing it all. Really we should always be doing this.”

I absolutely, unequivocally loved this! It’s just perfect. Did you know a toilet discussion could be so, well, poignant? Holy? You may beg to differ, but anything that can make such a mundane thing so inspirational is good, grounded spirituality in my book! Gotta love it.

It also makes me aware of how blessed I am to be able to live fairly simply and to have the space and time to experience and appreciate without being overwhelmed. It’s common for me to be in awe of even simple things — which I quickly see are not simple at all, but totally miraculous!

And thanks in part to gentle reminders like these two posts, I get to appreciate yet again just how precious life is.

What is it that prompts you to do that?

Thank you for reading and sharing this virtual space. I guess I can enjoy the sound of one hand clapping, but two is so much more fun. Blessings to you!

[Photo: Egor Gribanov]