Farewell 2022

Another year has rolled past and for me it was at times a painfully slow roll. It reminded me of a class in college almost 25 years ago. The professor was a mild mannered, aging hippy; complete with ponytail tied, not with a rubber band, but a piece of old leather cording. I was a geology major and just as granola as the professor. He was very knowledgeable and the cadence of the class, stratigraphy, was on par with how long it to for the strata we looked at to have morphed from sand to stone.

The classes and field trips were well planned and enjoyed by most. (As I am sure, dear reader, you are aware that there are always a few humans who need to complain no matter what.) Anyway, about two weeks into classes, as we were learning about the law of superposition, our quiet peaceful professor suddenly turned from the chalk board (yes, there were chalkboards in college-that’s how old I am) and began a rant about his ex wife, loudly, emphatically with gesticulations and maybe spittle.

Then just as fast as it began, it was over and he turned back to the chalk board continuing the lesson as if the whole diatribe never happened. Clearly he was a catastrophist! A uniforitarian would never exploded like that!

These outbursts happened randomly in every class I had with this professor. Initially it was shocking- was he crazy? A few screws loose? Overtime we adjusted to it and it became a normal part of his classroom experience.

The effusive eruptions didn’t make him a bad teacher, on the contrary it showed depth, a story- more than meets the eye. He wasn’t just an aging hippy teaching a bunch of ungrateful kids. This man had a life, hopes, fears, dreams. The outbursts were breadcrumbs leading the inquisitive on down the path of human experience just as the eruptions of pain and confusion I encountered this past year, were breadcrumbs leading me deeper into the mystery of my deteriorating health.

Pitchoff & Balancing Rocks. Adirondacks NYS

By following the trail, patterns began to emerge; both with my health and the life of my professor. Allowing a patience to settle over me- I am able to see more clearly into the patterns of detail. By pausing and stepping back, becoming the witness, I can see the forest through the trees, blossoming with awareness.

The shifting moods, subtle yet complex, were easily noticed by anyone paying attention. My professor suffered from bouts of depression and anxiety. The outbursts were his coping mechanisms when not wanting to take meds; a full release of energy- and a prompt return to normal.

Was there a clue here for me? My confusion, tremors and other symptoms had to be breadcrumbs leading me to the path of healing. I only needed the patience to persevere and not play the victim to my heath. With the belief firmly established that healing begins within, I used these random outbursts of bizarre symptoms to discover the patterns.

If the pattern of trees makes a forest then my pattern of symptoms would lead to a diagnosis. So like any good geologist, I got out my field notebook and began sketching out the layers of life that were impacting or being impacted by my symptoms.

It’s amazing that it takes catastrophe to look at the stratigraphy of our lives . Where is the fault? Where have we allowed the pressure to build to the breaking point. Where can we find small moments of release as to not completely shake loose our moorings later?

These insights along the rocky shore of healing has led me towards deeper inner wisdom and a softening of spirit. Patience, it seems, has been born of cleaving layers of sediment crashing through me. What else can you do with tremors, but ride them out, knowing this too shall pass and calm will be restored once again.

And in the calm lies stillness and elucidation; for from the pressure of living comes forth the diamond clarity of truth – all of life is an ebb and flow of pain, joy, suffering and love; leaving traces of each story to become fossilized in memory.

And in the calm, what I discovered classifying my pain and suffering was a pattern of excess and scarcity. It is between these two extremes a balance can be found. Overdoing it, taking on too much leads me down a path of deterioration. Doing too little leads to stagnation and eventually down the same path of deterioration.

However when conditions hover in the sweet spot between the two extremes; this yields a slow yet steady pace, allowing for the unexpected & reveling in its mystique. Set backs are no longer boulders blocking my way, but a chance to meander creatively around my inner space getting a fresh view, creating new neural pathways.

When we can witness our story, layer built upon layer, lessons and meaning emerge from the patterns. We can learn from our past, adjusting our patterns to create a path of fertile soil which holds within it the sediment of our memory, allowing for new growth and experience to ripple through our lives.

Wishing you a peaceful 2023.

Namaste

Non-dual

In stillness, the truth slowly revels itself. We begin to understand the preciseness of the Universe. Out of chaos arises beautiful order; a magical dance of dark/light, pleasure/pain, bliss/suffering, life and death; anew in each eternal moment.
𝘕𝘢𝘮𝘢𝘴𝘵𝘦

Fool(ish) Musings

Today we will take some time to think about “the fool’s” journey through life. This theme is represented in literature with works such as “the Epic of Gilgamesh” and ”Alice in Wonderland,” among many others. Joseph Campbell, an American writer and professor, described it as the archetypal hero story.
These themes are prevalent in our lives as we grow from child to adolescent to adult, gaining insight and experience along the way. We begin our journey as the uneducated novice (infant) bound in pure awareness, with no sense of self – hence, the fool.
Our modern language has negative connotations associated with the word FOOL; however, when examined through experience, we see that societal trappings and norms unencumber the fool. The fool experiences life in all its splendor, tasting experience for what it is. There is no shame, no guilt – only pure being.
As babies, we have no sense of self (as in self-consciousness); purely instinctual beings. Our whole experience is based upon survival- cry to be fed, changed, consoled. All our energy is concentrated in the root chakra. As we grow, we develop a sense of separation, of otherness. It is at this point our energy moves into the sacral chakra. We experience the partition based on sex and slowly become aware of the power sex and sexual identification has in our lives. Like the fool/hero on the journey, we must come to understand that power is limited, controlling, and lacking Love. If our karma in this life allows, we move into the third chakra, some of us developing a stable sense of self, or we become lost in the anxiety of trying to fit in. Most people are living through the energy of the lower 3 Chakras.
Progress moving the energy upwards becomes difficult due to our physical plane of existence constantly telling us we need more to be happy, loved, and fit in. Beings stuck here are trapped by instant gratification-always seeking outside of themselves.
The fool/hero, however, can move beyond the physical plane of power after some time. This shift can happen gradually, or some trauma can rend open the heart instantly, allowing the experience of the power of unconditional Love. This subtle energy will enable us to bridge the gap between the lower and upper chakras.
This Love can assist us further on our foolish yet heroic journey. It allows us to see the world for what is in pure Love. It invites gracious speech and action and opens our intuition to allow a depth of understanding: everything is exactly as it should be every moment.
This is the most difficult pill to swallow. War, greed, and suffering are all intrinsic parts of human existence, and they are the opposite side of the coin of Love, compassion, and empathy.
At a point in history, we began to see everything as duality (Eve eating the apple/Gilgamesh and Enkidu), and we lost the pure taste of awareness.
Those whose karma is ripening for awakening feel the “something not quite right” in how we are told to experience life.
The fool’s/hero’s journey is never straight, and it is a crooked path with many missteps and falls along the way.
Take time to look at your life from the perspective of storytelling. Can you identify early life moments where energy stagnated in the lower chakras?
In working with these ideas, we must remember that we are most likely not fully awakening in this go-round, and we are the fool – just beginning to open our eyes to the light of truth. This is a journey of many lifetimes, unpredictable and long.
With this realization, which cannot be intellectualized, we begin to see the face of god in everyone we meet. No one is better than us, no one less than us. All god, all one; All beings are moving toward the light in their way, in their own time.
The person that cut you off on the highway is god; the megalomaniac, hell-bent on persecuting other beings, is also god. It is all energy in form and all one. Ram Dass says, “ it is all grist for the mill.”
Everything we meet is the path.
Namaste

Magic

There is ★𝙈 𝘼 𝙂 𝙄 𝘾 ★ in the ordinary. Being present in the moment- 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘯𝘰𝘸 -is where spontaneous joy arises.

Meditation can help us become comfortable with stillness. It gives us practice being in the moment.

Over time we begin to notice that every part of our day can become our practice. We can mindfully make our beds, prepare our food, read to our children.

We begin to live in the now, no longer dwelling in the past or worrying about the future.

We live in the ★𝙈 𝘼 𝙂 𝙄 𝘾 ★ of now.



Now to be completely honest while in the middle of writing this, I had to stop to clean up dog puke. It doesn’t get much more ordinary than that!🤣 But if we learn to laugh in these moments -when we can see the absurdity of life in all its splendor AND in all it’s hardships- we realize it is all 𝗣𝗟𝗔𝗬.

That’s the whole point of mindfulness- discovering the magic in every moment of your life- whether cleaning up dog puke or falling in love, there’s always magic to be found.

Where do you experience 𝙈𝘼𝙂𝙄𝘾 in your daily life?

Reflections for a Sunday

Ideas and opinions change, views on life shift allowing for growth. New decisions and new choices allow new neural pathways to develop, creating room for more growth.


We flow moment to moment on waves of experience.

Photo by Emiliano Arano on Pexels.com


We allow our identity to be determined by our views and opinions and sometimes, even more so, by the expectations of others. This ID-entity is an illusion.
This illusion causes the separation we feel from all of creation.


We must learn to release our attachment to the idea that we are separate from our experience. We, along with everything else in the Universe, flow from moment to moment. We are a process of the Universe.

The Universe favors certain patterns (systems) which optimize flow. We see examples of this every day as our roadways resemble the circulatory or nervous systems in animals, the branches of trees, rivers and their tributaries; or the similarity between atoms and solar systems. Within these systems or patterns the flow of energy is optimized.

Briefly, let us think about the systems of our bodies- blood flows thru veins, air flows thru our lungs, hormones flow, thoughts flow- EVERYTHING is flow. Now let us think about the Earth: Rivers flow, air flows, Rock and ice flow. Nothing is static, everything is a process of flow, movement, change within a system (patterns) of energy.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Everything is energy. Life is an inter-play of energetic systems, a beautiful dance. We must allow awareness of our dance with the Universe to fully blossom in order to experience the infinite.

Namaste.