Welcome...

Come meander with me on the pathless path of the Heart
in these anecdotal,
sometimes inspiring, sometimes
humorous,
sometimes personal meanderings of
awakening
in the every-day-ness of Life...

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

November's Swan Song - Edge of Glory

It seems I’ve been at a loss for words lately, and so I’ve borrowed from others for my posts. Not that I’m in deep contemplative Silence here; not that there aren’t stories still occurring in my life to write about, with family and my own life circumstances. I love stories, yours and mine, especially the ones that have insight and wisdom as a result of the awareness that arises from the stories we find ourselves in. But nothing has arisen that wants to be written – until this morning. And of course I had to go to my mother’s… Such is life these days. The muse shows up and I have to say – wait, please wait, don’t’ go, I’ll be back… :) And this being the last day of November, on the edge of Winter’s arctic arrival tonight with a 40 degree temperature drop and snow, I thought this would be a nice way to say goodbye – to November that is. I’m not going anywhere :)

When I awoke this morning there was the usual dread and anxiety… And then for some unknown reason I asked myself – Who do I want to be today? Why this question, I have no idea. It just rolled off the brain. And I don’t mean that I want to become somebody else. The question itself made no sense. But with the question my solar plexus suddenly opened up, like a giant Sea Anemone, relaxed and became fluid. The constriction of dread and anxiety viscerally released. Another question arose: What does this *Being* that I am want… (You know, our essential Nature, our Being). With this next question my Solar Plexus opened even more, revealing more fluid energies like that of an aurora borealis… There was just a wide open fluid energy where my solar plexus is. It was as if the recognition of, and attention to, what Beingness wanted opened up the space.

As I showered I began to realize (once again) that *everything* is infused with this fluid Life that I was experiencing. Everything *is* this liquid Life (call it God, Buddha Nature, Christ Consciousness, “The Real” – everything is alive with this beautiful fluid Life.) And I began to belt out a few lines from the song “Edge of Glory” by Lady Gaga. Why that song? - who knows. And as I did so, I laughed and cried uncontrollably. Something deep inside broke open *to* this *presence* of Life inside.

Some “awaken” and laugh uncontrollably when they discover that all is an “illusion.” But for me the opposite happens. When I look around sometimes, I see that *everything* is REAL, is ALIVE. (I’ve had many such “moments.”) And it is seen that “illusion” is just a label, a story. When I *see* this Life, *feel* this Life energy, *experience* the Realness of this LIFE that we are – I become like a madwoman dancing :) – or singing – infused with an unexplainable and unspeakable sense of LIFE – totally and completely free.

When I see life this way – infused with *Life* – I can let life in; in whatever form it takes, or shape it comes in, because I know I am experiencing Life (Being) ItSelf. And Life does not make distinctions about what is Real (ItSelf) and what is “illusion.” It’s all “The Real.” The delusion of “illusion” drops away because our essential Nature is seen as this Aliveness that is living life. IT is experienced. One (The One) cannot separate “illusion”/phenomena from Reality - from ItSelf. *That* is sheer illusion. It’s all One Life. There’s no distinction – no boundary. It’s all fluid, seamless Life - playing – taking on form that we call “phenomena.”

In this realization, on the way home from my mother’s, everything came alive, became more vibrant – the trees, the mountains, the sky, the clouds, the music on the radio – even dead leaves were not seen as “dead” – as “Life-less.” Even my husband – not a non-existent illusion – but Aliveness in form. :) Everything plays, dances and sings with Life – like an aurora borealis – sometimes seen, sometimes not – depending on the “atmospheric conditions.” The “illusion” (depending on the perspective) is seen through to what animates the so-called “illusion.” I know, I sound like a madwoman standing at the edge. :) But I like the View from here…


“I’m on the edge of glory,
…hanging on a moment of Truth.

…I’m on the edge of glory…..with you.”

Lady Gaga
(what can I say :)



Shall we leap?





Northern Lights over Yellow Knife, BC, Canada
Sent to us by an online friend.




Sunday, November 27, 2011

November Sky 2

“What calls the ear to listen,
or the eye to see
more than the surface fa├žade
that shrouds the essential spirit?

…Bare your heart to the Unknown
and never look back.

What you are stands content,
invisible,
and everlasting.

…split open into eternal delight.”

Adyashanti




“All that remains is
the beaming luminosity
of Life Itself.”

Author unknown







May you awaken
to the mystery of being here
and enter the quiet immensity
of your own Presence.
May you have joy and peace
in the temple of your senses.
May you receive great encouragement
when new frontiers beckon.
May you respond to the call of your gift
and find the courage to follow its path.
May the flame of anger free you from falsity.
May warmth of heart keep your presence aflame,
and anxiety never linger about you.
May your outer dignity mirror an inner dignity of soul.
May you take time to celebrate the quiet miracles
that seek no attention.
May you be consoled
in the secret symmetry of your soul.
May you experience each day as a sacred gift
woven around the heart of wonder.


John O’Donohue






“When you tire of your own constriction
and you open to the flow of life,
you feel a river
moving in you,
a joy…”

“Something bigger and brighter always
calls to break through and shine.”


Elizabeth Lesser
Broken Open



Thursday, November 24, 2011

"Morning Has Broken"


“Morning has broken
like the first morning.
Blackbird has spoken,
like the first bird.

Praise for the singing.
Praise for the morning.
Praise for them springing
fresh from the Word….

[Ours] is the sunlight,
[ours] is the morning.
Born of the one Light,
Eden saw play…

Praise with elation.
Praise every morning.
[The] recreation of a new day…”


~*~


This little tune was humming through my head last evening,
and thought it was appropriate for today.
It is a few lines from the song:
”Morning has Broken”
by Cat Stevens in 1971.
Some of you may remember him :)
You can view a beautiful video of it on You Tube here
lyrics: Eleanor Farjeon

~*~


Photo taken by DH
before morning exercise :)



Monday, November 21, 2011

November Sky...


“He who can hear Love
can hear Silence.
He who can hear Silence
can hear Love.

All the words of the world bow
and pay homage to Silence’s song."


Kabir







“Let peace work on you
and enable you to gather your
scattered mind into
the mindfulness of Calm Abiding.”

“Above all, be at ease,
be as natural and spacious as possible.
Slip quietly out of the noose
of your habitual anxious self,
and relax into your true nature.”

Nyashul Khenppo








“Here is where the adventure begins,
the adventure of not knowing…
but simply standing still.
The task turns out to be ceding to stillness,
and in that stillness the recognition of
just this…”

“Stop pretending
you don’t know
the fundamental nature
of your being…”

Joan Ruvinsky
Pathless Yoga







“…over time wonders were revealed,
chief among them the light
of conscious awareness…”

”The light turned out to be
my truest home -
what was most abiding.”

Tracy Cochran
Finding a Path



Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Matrix of the Practical - A Plumbing Story

No, these are not my new “prayer flags”, although I probably need to get some and string them around the house. These towels are a sign that I’ve been caught in the matrix of the practical the past 2 weeks. And it wasn’t pretty. :) And you thought I had disappeared into the Forest, living a contemplative life. Needless to say, I have not stepped over that threshold yet…

The story begins with a plumbing back up in the kitchen sink on the afternoon of Nov. 5th, a Saturday. Dear Hubby tried to ream out the pipes to no avail, which meant we were without a functioning sink until the plumber came that Monday. So I washed dishes in the shower. :) The plumber successfully reamed out the kitchen pipe that runs under the basement floor, but it took 4 times – as we stood there with visions of having to dig up the basement. There was a clump of roots attached to the end of his reamer. Oh-oh. THEN, he discovered a leak coming down the basement wall at the site of the kitchen drain pipe. Oh dear. Not being “financially stable” at this point (as the Cricket job ended as quickly as it began because certain crickets couldn’t harmonize with each other – chirp) we opted to not have the plumber fix that, as DH said that *he* could fix that. Wifey :) didn’t believe it, but what can one do but to humor DH, and stay out of the way… So for two days DH tackled the job of finding and repairing the leaky pipe.
The dishwasher stood in the middle of the kitchen floor for two days. DH found a crack in the main kitchen drain pipe, right at floor level. And of course the pipe was not a straight line down to the basement. There was a 3 foot section of pipe that had elbows and turns in it to navigate the foundation. He cut out that section and took it to the local HD store. The handy men there told him to use a certain type of plumber’s “glue” – a thick, black, sticky substance – t0 seal up the crack. It worked! I amazingly maintained equanimity most of the time, with a few moments here and there of – what if you can’t fix it! He assured me he could. Oh me of little faith.

Six days later the sewer drain in the basement backed up at 11pm on Sunday night. Photo not available – you wouldn’t want to see it anyway. During the night the furnace went out and we woke up cold. Great – one more thing. My husband said the two were not related. By now I am turning into Eeyore, the poor-me little donkey in Winnie-the-Pooh, with more oh-dears, oh-no’s and what ifs, and how are going to ppppppaaayyyyy for th-th-this... Brain went into stress mode – biologically. The old neural pathways kicked in and I started functioning on automatic mode, the body contracted into a hard ball of anxiety and numbness. I would have liked to have made a different choice here, but I was unable to turn into the laughing Buddha – to see that it was my mind that was contracting around the event, creating stories. DH reminded me that I had become trapped in “the matrix of the practical” – as he coined it – only focusing on the practical problems and not the bigger picture. I had become trapped by my own mental matrix, and sitting in Silence in “The Forest” was the furthest thing from my mind – because – my mind had become entangled. And somewhere in the mental matrix there is still a belief in a separate sense of self that still feels threatened by life’s happenings – blocking the flow of Life through my “pipes.”

So – to continue - furnace guy and plumber guy arrive late Monday morning – fortunately not together. Furnace guy fixes furnace. Thankfully it is under warranty. Plumber guy, not so lucky. This time he reams out the outside access to the main sewer line to the house and can’t find the problem. So he calls the manager plumber with the special fiberoptic camera that looks into pipes. But *he* could not come until Tues at 11am, which turned into Noon. Meantime – no flushing the toilets and no running the water. Campers we are not. Maybe I need to rethink this sojourn into the Forest.

Tuesday camera guy finds the problem: tree roots in a 25 foot section of the main line in five different places. (We have two huge Cottonwoods, and a Walnut tree just a few feet from the house whose roots have infringed on the line.) So he ordered a “Jetter;” a plumber’s version of the “big guns” – a rooter with a cone shaped tip that shoots out forceful streams of water that cut through the roots. “Jetter” guy arrived an hour and a half late. (As Eeyore woud say – “of course” :) But, within a half an hour we are root free and back in business. Ah – life as it is… Never a dull moment. :)

I’ve always thought the “Forest Life” – the life of a contemplative - would be “easier”. Maybe that’s just my fantasy. I’m sure The Forest has its practical problems as well. You can’t escape the matrix of the practical. It’s just life happening the way it does – she says after the fact. :)

Late in the evening, as I prepared for bed, I noticed how wonderfully silent and peaceful the house was after all the chaos. And then I realized that it wasn’t the house that had been chaotic, it was my mind. And it wasn’t the house that was silent, it was the Silence within me being noticed again. The Silence had been underneath the mental matrix all along. I just couldn’t access it because of my narrow focus on the practical problems… I couldn’t see the Forest for the deeply entangled roots… I think I need a “Jetter.” :)

And that's the end of the plumbing tale - hopefully...

~*~

You might find this article in Parabola interesting…



Monday, November 14, 2011

Into The Forest...

For some time know I’ve had the feeling of being at a threshold. In my journal last month I wrote: It is time to enter “The Forest” again, “The Dark Forest” – the Unknown – to go deeper into the Unknown; an indefinable space.

As I meditated on this I heard the still small Voice within unexpectedly say: “How serious are you?” “How willing are you to enter the Unknown?” Whoa…

“The Forest” traditionally is a threshold symbol of entering the unknown, the deeper nature, or the spiritual world. In fairy tales it usually represents a passage through difficulties and an opportunity for “transformation” of some kind. I also see it as a sanctuary, refuge, a place of deepening. This entering the “Dark Forest” happens sometimes when I have lost (intentionally or otherwise) the framework which gives structure to my life, when I must find my own way, and be true to the call of Self. Shamans, poets, holy men and women sought refuge in the forest, as a healing place. Going into The Forest represents a return to the Primordial Self – beyond societal, cultural, conceptual and spiritual frameworks. In a way, it is like returning to the child’s heart of innocence - just following the longings of the Heart once again; trusting that I will emerge from "The Dark Forest" with clarity. As a child I often went into the forest next to our house as a place to just sit, to listen and commune with nature, and write poetry. It was a place of experiencing Awareness directly, although back then I called it “God.”

And, since I don’t have a “Dark Forest” handy, and I am spooked by things that go bump in the night, my Forest will have to be the space of Silent Awareness within – navigating the inner Forest of the Unknown – as well as the unknown practicalities of everyday living… In my imagination it is not a “Dark Forest” however. I see a forest filled with tall, white, straight, pole trees that look like birch or aspens – reaching up through the sky. It is not dark, but light here, and the sense of silence and quiet is palpable. My body begins to relax in this Silent Forest. I can feel its depth, its spaciousness, its welcoming… It’s a beautiful space, this Silent Forest, a vast awareness and aliveness live here. And I am drawn into it…

I am willing, I say inwardly, in answer to the Inner Voice, to enter the Unknown – the Forest – to trust Intuition to take me through. I am ready to step over the threshold and see where the Unknown takes me, while also navigating the matrix of practical realities of every day living… Care to join me :) Are you willing...


“The familiar horizon has been outgrown;
the old concepts, ideals,
and emotional patterns no longer fit.
The time for the passing of a threshold
is at hand.”

Joseph Campbell


“Midway upon the journey of life
I found myself within a forest dark,
for the straightforward pathway
had been lost…”

Dante Alighieri
The Inferno


“Sometimes you have to step into
the void and trust
that the ground will appear.”

author unknown




Bottom Photo: Calendar page from 2004
photographer unknown
copyright 2003

~*~

You may want to read The Pathless Path post
for more context





Saturday, November 12, 2011

Fall's Last Flash...



The lamps are different,
but the Light is the same...

Concentrate on essence,
concentrate on Light…

In lucid bliss,
calmly smoking off its own holy fire,
the Light streams towards you from all things...

The lamps are different,
but the Light is the same…

One matter, one energy, one Light,
one Light-mind,
endlessly emanating all things.
One turning and burning diamond.

One, one, one…

Ground yourself,
strip yourself down,
to blind loving silence.
Stay there, until you see
you are gazing at the Light
with its own ageless eyes…

Rumi
“One, One, One”




Inside this new love die.
Your way begins on the other side.
Become the sky.
Take an axe to the prison wall
Escape.
Walk out like someone suddenly
born into color.

Do it now.
You’re covered with thick cloud.
Slide out the side.
Die,
and be quiet.

Quietness is the surest sign
that you’ve died.

Your old life was a frantic
running from Silence...

Rumi
”Quietness”



Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Silent Soundings...


Soundings from Silence


~~~




Existence “exists” in a field
of Silent Awareness
Everything is “held” in this space –
suspended in deep Silence…





~~~

I feel myself slipping deeper into the Silence,
slipping off the shore of the mind,
into the deep internal Silence -
the depths of the Ocean of Aware Knowing,
in which *everything* is suspended…

~~~


This Silent Awareness *wants* to be found,
recognized, acknowledged, known…

Who really *lives* here?
What animates this human self?
What animates this body-mind?
What functions the cells?
Who *lives* this body?

Who is it that *wants* to be recognized as *living* here?

~

A recognition of Self occurs – of Being-Self,
of Deep Awareness, of the Who/What that
lives this body, animates and functions this body...

I am being lived...



~~~

Inspiration arises from this deep Silence.
Creativity arises spontaneously.
Words arise from here without thinking them…

~~~



Resting deeply with no agenda, no seeking
just experiencing the deep rest of Silence,
I feel the pull of the depths of unavoidable,
irresistible Silence...




I recognize this space ~~~






I am being freshly bathed
in the waters of Silence ~


I am being breathed
by Silence ~~~






~*~



“To be aware of the embrace in which
Existence holds us
is the greatest gift…”

Deva Premal
From her CD - “Embrace”

~

"Only when you drink from the river
of Silence
shall you sing…"

Kahlil Gibran

~


Photos–
Top - Vortex Art
#2 – Inside of Earthenware Pot
#3 – Shadow Ripples on Counter
#4 – Shadow on Wall
#5 – Heart Shape Water Droplet


~

You might also like these past posts;
Silent Window
Symphony of Silence - Poem
A Prayer of Silence



Sunday, November 6, 2011

Intimacy with Deep Silence...


There is an intimacy with deep Silence
that is indefinable,
luxuriatingly peaceful…

A fluidity of

~ s p a c i o u s n e s s ~

of Silent Awareness

aware-ing,

listening…


Nothing irritates or disturbs.

Everything is open

BE~ing~ness


There is depth,

and breadth,

and substance,

and fullness

to this

rhythmic

space

of

Silence

that

embraces,

surrounds,

and

fills

every crack and crevice
of the
body and mind,

soothing out the rough spots,

aligning the ‘energies’

softening their flow ~ ~ ~


There is sanity in this Silence
that
is
beyond
breathtaking.


It is:

The Breath of the Infinite

The Whisper of Love

The Taste of Forever

The Feeling of Peace

The Awareness of Presence

~

Intimacy with this deep
Silence
is
*knowing*
I am
Home...

...resting in
The Primordial Womb
of Life!

~

Mystic Meandering
copyright
Oct. 27, 2011

~
Photo ~ Aurora Borealis
sent to us by someone
who worked in Antarctica
several years ago.

~

You may also like these posts:
The Primordial Womb of Stillness
Turn…Turn… Turn…




Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Pathless Path...

I find the older I get the more I want to experience Truth directly, and leave the many trodden “spiritual paths” that I’ve been on all my life behind – gasp. Even as a child I wanted to *know* “God” – a child’s understanding of God. Then my search evolved and expanded to include finding “myself” – whoever that was :), then Truth, Wisdom, peace of mind, and last, but not least, the search for “Enlightenment.” They are all the same “path” under different disguises. And now, through all these many paths, I am feeling the need to settle in, deepen, and re-discover a sense of inner Truth for myself; not by following a particular external path – but by intuitively listening to the voice of Life in my Heart; observing this inner Life directly, by spending time in Silence (which I avoid so easily). Now if Life would only cooperate and give me the right environment. :) (Just kidding:).

Being on a “spiritual path” implies that one is going somewhere, seeking “Some-thing” at the end of the journey – like retirement after a life of working; or the magical pot of gold at the end of the mythical rainbow; or even the mystical “Holy Grail.” Or maybe one is even seeking an *end* to something, like suffering, pain, ignorance, their humanness, or the end of seeking. But what if there was no need for “a path”, no need for seeking the illusive big “Some-thing” that spiritual seekers are seeking? I find myself in this place of questioning – again… I have been down the "seeking road" – many times…

The path of “Enlightenment”/”Awakening”/”Self-Realization”, particularly the path of what is popularly known as “Non-Duality”, has lost its luster, its pull, its certainty for me – much like the other paths I have taken throughout my life. It’s just another construct. I found out that the Emperor has no clothes! And I’d rather not describe Truth by a negative – with no-me, no-self, no other, no-world - as Truth is all inclusive – including duality, me, self, other, and the world.

Even if one follows “a path” (which can be any path) there is no guarantee that we will discover what we are looking for, and life will not suddenly become easy or flowing with bliss. We won’t necessarily lose our personality with its quirks, our conditioning, or our neuroses. Our thoughts will not stop, neither will our surface struggles, or our pain, or our stories. Walking “a path” doesn’t even guarantee that we will actually *see* life differently from either the mountain top, or with nose to the ground; or suddenly find our “purpose” – as if there’s only one. But no one tells us this about “the path.” It has to be a Self-discovery - for ourselves – even if we have a “Teacher” or use a “Teaching” to point the way…

Years of seeking, realization, recognition, and then forgetting, and then remembering, and then forgetting again – brought me to the realization that discovering (or rediscovering) this Being-Self/Truth that we are, is through awareness of and deep intimacy with the Silence within; through continually coming back to the Heart of Awareness – the space of Silent, Still, innate Wisdom – which of course is wherever we are at the moment, not off in the distance somewhere. It’s not a place. “The path” doesn’t *go* anywhere. There is no reward at the end. It’s an inner pathless path… And that’s my “path” at the moment :) - rediscovering this inner Silent, Aware Wisdom for myself. It’s an inner pathless path of remembering; remembering the underlying Rhythm of Life ItSelf – humming through… Ommmmmmm…..



“A mystic is content with nothing less than
to touch the Truth in its most universal purity.”

Ivan Granger
Poetry Chaikhana

~

“Wanderer, your footsteps are the road,
and nothing more;
Wanderer, there is no road.
The road is made by walking…

By walking one makes the road,
and upon glancing behind
one sees the path that will
never be trod again…

Wanderer, there is no road –
only wakes upon the sea…”

Antonio Machado

~

“Empty yourself of everything.
Let the mind rest in peace.
The ten thousand things rise and fall
while the Self watches their return.
They grow and flourish and then
return to the source.
Returning to the source is stillness,
which is the way of nature….”

“Returning is the motion of the Tao.”

Lao Tzu

~~

Photo – taken by my father
1952/53