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

Friday, September 27, 2013

"Canyon Spirits" - The Evolution of a Painting...

I started this painting nearly a year ago in a moment of frustration, thus the red color and hash marks all over the place, painting in circles.  I am an intuitive painter, so I do not have an “intention” for the painting when I start.  I like to just see what evolves and what emerges out of it… Painting this way is a “practice” in letting go, of not having expectations – hopefully J - in not being “in control” of where it goes; like life actually – not being “in control” of life, but allowing oneself to be open and vulnerable to how it unfolds.  It’s very challenging actually to live that way – as well as to paint that way…  There can be lots of frustration…  It originaly looked like this (below) and sat like this on the easel for 7-8 months.

Every time I looked at it I kept seeing the face of a Tiger, and wondered how I could make it *look* like a Tiger, not having the trained artistic experience or skill to do that.  (The Tiger is no longer apparent, as other things emerged.)  When I started painting again in May/June I was still trying to figure out how to make it look like the Tiger that I saw, thus the single painted in eye, as that is what my mind saw. 

And then a “voice” said: keep looking, look deeper.  I wasn’t hearing things, it was the voice of my husband actually, as I discussed my frustration with not being able to create what I saw in my head.  He said – don’t stay fixated on your idea of what it is supposed to look like, but keep looking and see what else is there.  Something we need to do in life as well – look deeper, beyond the surface, and see what is really there.  So I kept looking.  And suddenly *many* different faces started emerging!  (see close-up below). Initially I saw what looked like the outline of a man’s face in a window with closed eyes, and nose, (near the middle), blended into another partial face slightly under the first one.  A woman’s silhouette in a window appeared on the right, up against what appeared to be two back to back “caricature” profiles, with a flat hat.  And then an owl appeared on the far left, and blended into what looked like a coyote face with mouth open, which blended in with the man’s face, and so on…  There’s even a little fox face tucked in there somewhere… And some teepees too :)



 The whole painting took on a different look, a different feel.  It had transformed itself.  It became a terracotta desert canyon against a night sky – and another realm beyond.  Totally unintentional…  Amazing. 

In the lower right hand corner there appeared to be a grouping of hash marks standing around what appeared to be the glow of a hidden fire…  To me they were Native peoples standing around a fire as smoke rose into the canyon and beyond, where a Raven glides through firey skies…



In the lower left hand corner there was the clear outline of yet another fire, with two “figures” nearby.



And so goes the story and evolution of a painting that took on a life of its own, inviting me to look more deeply… Like life…



Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Primordial Intimacy...

“The key is constantly ‘returning’ your awareness to the awareness of Primordial Consciousness, Primordial Presence, Primordial *Life* before form.  We are constantly challenged to wake up and remember this…”

This came out of a conversation with my husband the other day, in the face of life’s challenges that are currently occurring here on an ongoing basis that I lament about and feel pulling me away from this deeper sense of Awareness.

However, I also know that intentional and conscious awareness of Primordial Silence is the key to “remembering” – for me.  The Primordial Silence of Life calls to me, like and old friend – inviting me, waiting for me to respond, to come and be still – to be aware.  All I need do is consciously turn within and *meet* It - the Primordial Life *in* everything, the Primordial Silence that *is* Life - and feel It, experience It, open up to It.

I’ve been trying to put a *face* to this Primordial Silence that just IS – with names like Spirit, or The Infinite, or The Divine, or God, when in Truth, it is the vast nameless Unknown – and even that is still an attempt to name it, to bring into focus what is simply Divine Simplicity - Awareness that cannot be “person-ified.”

Intimacy with the “Divine” (Primoridal Consciousness) is what we are “made” for – stripping everything else away, all resistances, all ideas and names *about* what that is, or thoughts *about* what it should look like, and allowing the veils that keep us from this Divine Communion of Silence to drop away…  Letting Primordial Silence/Presence permeate every cell – rather - *recognizing* that it permeates every cell – that IT is WHAT we are, and have never been separate from.  This *awareness* of Primordial Silence is the medicine, the elixir of Life – dissolving everything that has allowed us to believe in separateness from this Divine Intimacy that is eternally present in ItSelf – in us.

It is a conscious endeavor to remember that no matter what is going on, there is always Intimacy with Primordial Silence – the Ground of Being, of Existence and all that exists.  I just need to keep re-turning to It: the awareness of Primordial Intimacy with Life ItSelf!



Photo: raindrop on screen
digitally colored



Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Behind the Mask - "The Good Dark"

The above piece is a work in progress, except that I *love* this piece the way it *is*!  It speaks to me so deeply about what is behind the masks we wear: the Infinite Spaciousness of Eternal Beingness.  Even though the masks we wear themselves may be beautiful, what is behind them is the Infinite Spacious Cosmos ItSelf – represented here by “the dark” canvas behind the mask.   And so I left this sitting on an easel in my creative space to inspire me.  I see it every time I walk by the room, which is several times daily – admiring its simplicity, and its subtle message – that who we *think* we are (our egos, our personalities, our minds, our bodies) is only a mask that arises out of Infinite Cosmic Beingness.  Eventually this piece may be “finished” as I envisioned it – but I am waiting, listening for it to call to me…

Several weeks ago in meditation I got the image of a mask lifting off what in my mind was an outline of a “meditating face”, an “empty” face against a black background, that I crudely drew with ink pen, in my journal notes, so is a bit messy…  This inspired me to go out and try to find a mask, which obviously I did, at a local craft store, and basically just hung it over the black canvas; an old canvas that I had previously painted over several times…  After I hung it I was hesitant to draw the outline of the “meditating face” in – but wanted to just sit with it.  I was drawn to the very visceral sense of the mask *emerging* out of the darkness – which soothed something within me – as if a recognition was occurring.

This piece speaks to me in so many ways, one being the Zen saying:  Keep stepping back until you step into That which is looking through your eyes – seeing through the mask you wear - pointing to what we really are as Infinite Space, Infinite Beingness, Infinite Spirit.  That is what is looking through the mask – our Eternal Being.   I find that inspiring – that who we are *is* the Infinite Cosmos ItSelf – our True Being, which is of course Internal.  It is not “out there” somewhere in space :) – but right Here in the very Heart of our Being – and yet – we ARE that Cosmic Spaciousness as well – our Home, our Cosmic Mother so-to-speak…  We ARE the stuff of stars… 

So often we view the darkness in our lives as “bad”, something to avoid, to not allow into our experience because we have labeled it as being the opposite of light, or something “evil” – a dark, foreboding abyss.  When in fact, according to some traditions, it is the light that emerged out of Infinite Darkness – out of the Cosmic Womb – the Primordial Stillness, if you will – out of which our planet, solar system and galaxy emerged…  Fascinating!

About two weeks after putting this “piece” together on the easel I received an on-line newsletter called NonDuality Highlights.  It featured an article written by Ivan Granger from Poetry Chaikhana giving his interpretation of a poem called “The Good Darkness” by Hakim Sanai, a Sufi poet. (You can view the poem and entire article HERE).  As I read through it I thought, what timing!  It all came together for me.  I have only printed an excerpt here, because it is those parts that say what I wanted to say about “The Good Dark” but couldn’t articulate.

He says:

“What is this “Good Dark”?  Light is so often considered one of the attributes of the Divine, but we forget that dark too is also a metaphor...  The Eternal is sometimes called dark because IT is beyond the ability of the limited intellect to see.  It is the realm where there is no longer separations; nothing is seen as separate from That [the Eternal].  It can feel like a shining darkness.

So the Sacred Dark, the Good Dark, is God [the Eternal] vast beyond comprehension, [it is] Being that gathers everything, even light, into ItSelf.  This is the darkness where there is great joy.  This is the immense Mystery…

If we understand the Divine to be that living, mysterious darkness, then we finally recognize ourselves as the same as that darkness. [the light and dark being the same – think Yin-Yang where the light is contained within the dark and dark within the light – as a symbol of oneness].   In the ‘half-light’ [partial understanding] we are still distracted by our own faces, we are confused, more aware of ourselves than the holy mystery we touch.  We become like a young lover, too self-conscious to simply lose oneself in the embrace of the Beloved.

…[when] we have no face of our own *separate* from That [our face before we were born – maybe my “meditating face”?], then we can melt silently into the Good Dark, into the mystery of the Divine.  Your face gets erased – the false self, the little me, the ego [the mask - your sense of separateness *from* the You that is Divine].  This is the place where concepts fail, where reality is no longer parceled out into dichotomies of good and bad, right and wrong (no division of opposites)...  There is nothing (except the Divine Wholeness that is all things, emptying individual things of their substance.) The ego-mind is no longer able to say ‘this is separate from that.’

In the mind’s deep stillness, reality is perceived as one, whole, unsegmented, pure – beyond the ego’s attempts to segment reality.

If you can settle deeply into this awareness [that there is nothing except Divine Wholeness, beyond the mask], then you will find yourself drinking the ecstasy of true love-wisdom!”

Ivan Granger, Poetry Chaikhana…
[brackets are mine] (parentheses his)

~

For a more humorous look at this topic
see my post:
Who would you be if you weren’t who you THINK you are…





Sunday, September 8, 2013

Cosmic Love...

I have conversed with the Universe,
contemplated and cogitated,
ascended and descended,
polarized, conceptualized and spiritualized;
dis-membered and re-membered -
and still, I find no -
 “plan.”

Only vastness and immensity,
beyond theory, framework and perception.
The Greatest, Grandest Mystery
in an ever unfolding nebula,
procreating itself in billowy clouds
and golden streams of stardust
in an endless infinity.

A golden thread weaves through space
without beginning or end, through
the Silence beyond creation, through
Sound beyond sound, and
Light beyond light…

Matchlessly weaving its Eternal vibration
through timelessness,
into time and times beyond time,
with one theme braided into its
unending spiral
through dimensions,
distortions, and
dysfunctions

~ Love~

From this divine, mysterious weave
we dance the dance of duality,
complete in our light and our dark
 within a vast Cosmic Love
of Divine Embrace…


Mystic Meandering
Winter Solstice 1999
Revised Sept 2013

~



Photo: Shadow on a wall
digitally colored…



Wednesday, September 4, 2013

"Serenity Sabbatical..."

B left this morning in another attempt to visit his mother…   Fortunately this time he made it without a car glitch…

I am always saddened by his departure, even though I look forward to the “alone time.”

We always leave little cards for each other, reminders of our love, and little words of encouragement for the time apart.  This morning I found this card under my pillow.  He had made the card himself, finding these stylized Japanese symbols on-line - supposedly the symbol for “serenity” – adding the word “sabbatical”, knowing that this was my intention - to use this time to deepen into communion with Beloved “Silence.”  This means stopping the daily routine, finding the Inner Sanctuary and resting there; withdrawing from the internal chaos, sinking into Sacred Silence - and listening; withdrawing the mind from the quest for whatever it is I *think* I’m still searching for: the quest for “answers” to the cosmic questions, and the mental gyrations that go with that - allowing the mind to come to rest as well – just BEing.

 On the inside cover of the card there was another Japanese symbol for “awakening.”   “…..meaningful awakenings,” he wrote in his note, “revealed through venturing into the unknown, through the presence of Awareness, riding the rapids on our pathway to the Eternal Sea – the Ultimate Reality”

Love doesn't get any better than that :) Someone who knows your deepest Self...

And so over the next few days, that’s exactly what I’ll be doing: taking a “Serenity Sabbatical”, standing at the edge of the Unknown, dwelling in the Silence between thoughts, conversing with the Universe, J becoming aware of the Eternal Sea, the Inner Rhythm, the indwelling spontaneous movement of LIFE – again and again – carried by the Inner Flow of Being…

See you on the other side! J



“The finite man longs for the Infinite.
The love that makes the stars,
moves also the heart of man,
and a law of spiritual gravitation
leads his soul to the Soul of the Universe.

Man sees the sun by the light of the sun,
and he sees the Spirit
 by the light of his own inner spirit.

The radiance of eternal beauty
shines over this vast universe
and in moments of contemplation
we can see the Eternal…

Juan Mascaro

(From – Introduction to his translation of the Bhagavad Gita)