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, June 29, 2012

Stopping the Madness...

Just within the past few days I had a simple awareness that gave me an Ah-ha moment.  I realized that my anger and frustration towards my family dynamic has a lot to do with my being too emotionally invested in wanting to fix it/them – to make life better *for* them, to rescue them from their life situation – feeling responsible to *do* something about their situation – and feeling helpless to do so; wanting both my mother and sister to *see* their wounds and the dynamic of their situation, to get help so they don’t have to wallow in their pain and dysfunction - AND so that I don’t have to feel responsible *for* them.  But the “madness” (anger) that I feel is really because I cannot *control* the situation, the outcome, their unwillingness to take action to alleviate their own pain.  And - because I don’t want to have to pay the consequences for *their* choices.  There are always consequences for the unconscious choices of others…  In essence I can’t get them to *want* to change the way they are doing life.  So I realized I just had to stop the madness for *myself* - to not sacrifice myself to their madness, as they unconsciously choose to live it.  I realized that I just had to let them live it in their own way, and focus on what is really important – stopping the madness in my own mind.

Still entangled in the family drama that had become a veil, blinding me from seeing clearly, from seeing the larger context in which the whole drama of life is played out – the space of Silent Aware Consciousness - it took 3 days of confusion, floundering, anger, sadness and Silent Meditation to clearly experience the clear, clean, open space of Aware Conscious within again.  It meant getting my self out of the way – letting go of the need to be on top of things, vigilant, alert, prepared – extricating myself emotionally from my role in the family drama that I have entrained with, and listening for the internal Rhythm of Being once again.  It also meant not allowing myself to be distracted by the family drama that keeps me living on the surface, but returning again and again to the Silent space and fluidity of True Beingness.

This little piece of writing below reflects (for me anyway) – that inner yearning to live authentically from that place of Truth – the greater context of Aware Consciousness. Of course each of us would define what that would look like differently, as each of us is a unique expression of Truth - but maybe you’ll find yourself in it too.  This was a journal entry from January 1, 2011 that I found with a “Post-It” note attached to it (see below).  I have put it in poem form.

I want to walk through life
truly *seeing* - truly Aware…
 *Awake* to the Truth of Eternal Being…
Open to Life –
 not with mental judgments, opinions, and interpretations
 of what is happening,
 or what should be happening,
 or what I wish would happen,
  but with receptivity,

I want to See *everything* as Living Beingness;
 every leaf that drops,
 or snowflake that falls,
every being -
 with the same innocent wonder and amazement as I did as a child
as if seeing Life living for the first time…

  I want to be in Love with Life again –
 if I ever was…
  Maybe Loving Life in new ways –

I want to Hear
the laughter
in my

I want to Experience
with curiosity
and equanimity

I want to Notice…
every thought,
and feeling
as it arises
trying to confine it,
or suppress it
before it is expressed;
or correct others
in their expression.

Save me from the arrogance of
thinking that I know what others need,
or how to “help” or “fix” them;
allowing others to be who they are,
trusting that Life is taking
them where they need to go,
just as It is me…

Let me be free from the entanglements
of the mind
that keep me compliant,
and complicit,
with the world’s ways…

Life is a paradigm of endless pathways,
and I want to risk not following the rules,
the well-worn paths.
Instead - rising above
the familiarity
of “the path”
to see what’s *really* here…

I want to live
the simplicity

And may I have the courage
to speak with fierce grace
to those who would try to
quell this passion,
to strip this enthusiasm,
and suffocate this spontaneity
the radiance


Mystic Meandering
Meditative Writings
January 1, 2011

And here is that quote that was stuck onto the journal page with a sticky note – which I also put in the form of a poem…

“If you want to see what’s behind the curtain of reality,
to take the red pill
and discover what the matrix really is,
you have to have a yearning for Absolute Truth.

You have to be willing to give up everything.
The cost is literally all of you -
to leave ‘everything’
to know and experience
the Truth:
your materialism,
your psychological addictions,
your identity,
your life-long programming,
even family

Author Unknown

And I would assume this also means blogging… :)

Please Note:  This does not mean I intend to walk out
the front door and abandon my family :)
They know I am always available to them.
  Any of you who have known the
deep yearning for Truth will understand...
Essentially what I am saying and feeling
 is not allowing myself to be distracted
from this passion for Truth that I feel...

And - it's about seeing the difference between having
compassion for others
and being co-dependent -
not rescuing people from the consequences
of their own choices and their life's path...



Top – Reflections of light through stained glass window.

#2 – I experimented with a function called Inversion,
making the photo look like a negative,
only with color.  Amazing how that works!
I love this affect!

#3 – Reflection in the window


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Coon Capers...

Time to lighten up!

While visiting with my mother and sister on Saturday
for dinner and a movie
we were pleasantly surprised when a family of
Raccoons showed up right on schedule
for our amusement – of course.  :)

Raccoons have family dynamics too :)

My sister leaves food and water (big green dish) out for them
which is why they come back.

DH - with me telling him where to edit :)
 put this funny video together.
He sped it up so that you wouldn’t
be bored out of your gourd,
which makes for some silly antics.
The chipmunk-like voices are
my sister and me
talking in the background,
making it sound like the Raccoons
are talking to one another. :) 

Nature always has a way of
taking us into the innocence and joy
of the present moment…

Laugh and Enjoy!
or maybe just smile in amusement…

Friday, June 22, 2012

Wounds of the Heart...

My mother’s cat literally dropped dead at her home a week ago Thursday, leaving my 84 year old mother sitting holding her dead cat in a deluge of tears in the Vet’s office - understandably.   Unspoken wells of emotion came from deep caverns within, flooding the room.  I’m sure it was also years of the hidden emotional pain of life and loss.  Loss can do that.  It brings up a lot of hidden issues we didn’t know were there.  My teary eyed sister and I tried to console her.  But what can you do when a woman does not want to be consoled, when she pulls away in bitterness, and uses the opportunity to zing you with her words.  Anger and pain are closely related.  While cradling her dead cat like a newborn, she said: “I know *other people* didn’t like you but *I* loved you – indirectly pointed at the two of us – purposely shrugging each one of our hands off her shoulder – pulling away.  Ouch…

My mother’s cat was not a cuddly, loving cat.  You had to keep your distance, and pass by him carefully undergoing a gauntlet of hisses and swats.  No, we didn’t warm up to him.  But we each have lost a cat and know the deep pain and grief of losing a beloved pet.  And we were being rebuffed for our offering.  I could only step back in wonder at how deep my mother’s pain must go to use this opportunity to bite back – unconsciously, I know.  This hasn’t been the first time either.  As my sister and I stepped away and moved across the room I became aware of an internal hurt to the zing, and a reaction arose.  Instead of love, an incredible awkwardness filled the room – and the ride home from the Vet.  The remnants of unclaimed baggage…

How does one express love and compassion to a woman who obviously can’t receive it, whose emotional baggage is so heavy she has no free hands to receive any offer of consolation.  Whose wounds are so deep they won’t allow her to authentically love – or be loved.  This is the dynamic in my family vortex, and I imagine in many other families as well.  We all have them – the baggage, the wounds, the denial, the blaming, the deep bitterness of not feeling loved and nurtured enough that poisons relationships and gets carried from generation to generation.

Over the years we all have had our own ways of wounding each other with our hidden pain - with sharp tongues, with sarcasm and criticism, with anger - revealing our inability to hold our hearts open. Unable to speak of our wounds with each other in mature, authentic ways that heal, we default instead to the dysfunction, reverting to the passive-aggressive hurtful behavior of our prickly personalities – with little digs that get expressed to relieve the hidden suffering, to bite back, to be right – to try to control our pain.

Many years ago I became aware of my own pain and dysfunction – my shadow side - and began to get some much needed professional help. I also took up the so-called “spiritual path” to find a “better way”, to become more conscious of my own deeply hidden wounds – and – to “awaken” to who I really am at the Heart of Being beyond the pain.  This does not make me special, or more evolved, or “better than.”  I just wanted to move past the pain, and to know the Truth.  I thought I had gotten past the pains of the past, but last week I could feel the heart ache flood to the surface again.  I was a bit surprised actually.  The difference was, I could just let it be there, just notice it rise (and after a couple of days dissipate.)  No longer willing to lash out from hurt in anger, I was just aware – aware of my own woundedness and everyone else’s, still trying to be present - from a safe distance emotionally – allowing some space as the thunder rolled through everyone. 

It became clear that the cat’s death had become a catalyst for the emergence of unspoken family pain again…  But what can one do when other family members don’t want to *see* their pain, to face the 500 pound elephant in the room, refuse to get help while drowning in a sea of dysfunction – threatened by the mere exposure of the deep, open family wound that makes my heart ache to write about it...

“Accepting life as it is” sometimes gets bandied about in non-dual circles like a cliché, but the pain of “life as it is” needs to be addressed at times… At some point there has to be a willingness to *see* - our own and each other’s wounds - a willingness to get to the root of the wound: the *belief* in separation from our Eternal Beingness/True Nature.

Non-dual awareness, teachings, practices, methods, and techniques are not a “spiritual bypass” for our pain.  Nothing is left behind.  Everything is allowed as part of the fabric of Reality – the suffering, the wounds, the shadows, the tears in the fabric of living.  And there needs to be a willingness to open to those wounds through awareness, tenderness and compassion *for* the woundings.   And through that, a different path emerges, so that we are not unconsciously defaulting to the path of hidden pain and suffering, again and again… 

But - are we willing to expose and unwind the wounds of the Heart?   Are we willing to wake up and see the Truth of who we really are and not *live* in our wounds…   Obviously I’m still facing mine :)



The pictures are from a scrapbook I did many years ago when I was addressing the wounds of the Heart.
They are individual collage pages dealing with some aspect of “the wound” as I understood it back then.
What I didn’t understand at the time was the deep wound of separation
that is at the root of our sense of woundedness and suffering -
the not *knowing* of who we really are…

It was only when I began to be aware of our inherent True Nature/Beingness
that the wounds began to be faced and embraced – over time…

May we all wake up from “the wound.”

Monday, June 18, 2012

Meandering Nature's Sanctuaries...

Saturday my husband and I went on an “outing” and discovered a new place for me to meander…  We found this wonderful Eden about 20 mins from here.  It has gardens and ponds tucked away along nature paths with wetlands and waterfalls, and - well just about everything one could want in nature to meander in.  We left realizing we didn’t get to see the cascading waterfalls.  I intend to make this my new sanctuary  – a place to wander – to take photos – to sit and commune – to be in silence, yet not isolated – just being…  Here’s a first pass look at our meanderings in nature’s sanctuary…  There will be more… :)

The goose in the following video was snoozing as we walked up.  The other geese went into the water.  He woke up and suddenly realized he had been left behind.  It made for a rather comical moment.  Wait for me!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Where do the "answers" lie...

“I have a thousand brilliant lies
for the question:
Who are you?

I have a thousand brilliant lies
for the question:
What is God?

If you think the Truth can be
known from words,

If you think the Sun and the Ocean
can pass through
that tiny opening called
the mouth…

O Someone should start laughing!
wild laughing – Now!"


"Instead of *thinking* up an answer,
it’s about letting the question
resonate in the pool of the heart,
not as a thought,
but as a listening -
as pure sensing…"

Joan Ruvinsky
Pathless Yoga

"Every new understanding of who you really are,
attunes you more delicately to this space of full awareness,
so that you can hear and be guided by your inner voice
more clearly…

Your attachments may veil the truth from you.
Your attachments lead you to seek
outside yourself for answers
that can only come to you
from your own heart.

Each time you lose contact
with that inner awareness,
you need only meditate.
For through meditation
you will hear that
inner “click”,
that sense of rightness.

Your answers are unique.
Listen with your heart…"

Ram Dass
Journey of Awakening

"The liberating Truth is not static;
it is alive.
It cannot be put into concepts
and be understood by the mind.

The Truth lies beyond all forms of
conceptual fundamentalism.

What you are is the beyond…
It is awake and present -
here and now already.

To be here,
all you have to do
is to let go of
who you *think* you are."


My only advice for you is this…
Go within yourself
and probe the depths
from which your life springs.

And there, at its source,
you’ll find the answer
to the questions…

Accept this answer,
just as you hear it,
without hesitation..

Rainer Maria Rilke
Letters to a Young Poet
(istock photo)

Do not seek the answers to your questions,
but find the perspective that lets you *see through* everything -
seeing the transparency of all things -
the fluidness of it all -
the changeableness of it all…


No longer seeking for answers – BE…
BE profoundly well with everything that arises.
Let it all take place around you.

Sit in the well of “wellness” – the hollow of the Heart.
Sit in the pool of profound Wellness of Being –
Inner Peace,
Inner Stillness,

Live in Primordial Peace,
the Infinite Alive Stillness -
the Pause that sustains everything…


The invitation is to come into the depths.
Find the depths of Being internally.
Find the fluidity under the surface waters
at the depths of Being.

Remind yourself of the depths
from which you came,
and re-enter the depths.
Everything comes together
in the depths of Being…

Find the deep Stillness
and rest there…

Mystic Meandering
Meditative Writings

“The answer, my friend,
is blowin’ in the wind…
The answer is
blowin’ in the wind…”

Blowin’ In The Wind
Bob Dylan
(sung by Peter, Paul and Mary)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Wake Up and Laugh!

The other night, at 2am, I was awakened by a dream, not of my own making.  In actuality, I was hardly sleeping at all, when suddenly I was kicked hard in the shin by an errant foot.  I rose to one elbow, exclaiming OWwww, sounding more like an injured cat, to which DH broke out in uncontrollable gales of laughter.  I thought the laughter was part of the dream, but no – he had actually woken up and *realized* that he had been dreaming when he had kicked me, and thought it was hilarious, that what he had dreamed had become a projection into “reality” – projected outside the dream state as an actual kick landing on my shin.  As if they were *not* two separate realities… 

He tried to explain the dream through his belly laughter that I have only heard maybe 3 times in our 33 years.  It was rather delightful actually.  Next thing I knew I was uncontrollably laughing as well.  Not because the dream was so funny, but because my husband’s *reaction* to the fact that he woke up *within* the dream and actually kicked me *outside* of the dream, which threw him into further gyrations of laughter, was just too funny.  Pure, joyous, awakened laughter is catching.

The gist of the dream is that we were outside of a school.  I was standing to his right, and another man grounded a football to him from his left, and he kicked the ball – er my shin – as I slept to his left.  See, not all that funny.  But the reaction to the dream is what woke us up; the realization that his dream and "reality" were one reality.

I’ve heard it said that when we finally “wake up” to the Truth of Existence we start to laugh, realizing what we believed to be real is just a dream, a projection of the mind.  I used to believe this, but now I’m not so sure.  I’m a “direct experience” kind of gal, a woman passionate for Truth, who just wants to experience the Truth of Existence, who just wants to wake up to the Truth and laugh. I used to believe everything I was told was “The Truth.”  Now I’d prefer to experience Truth directly.  On the “path of awakening”, as I discovered, *everything* comes into question.  And I know that *my* mind could not have created this beautiful "dream" we call life…  Just look out your window…

I have had many moments of peeking through the veil that supposedly separates us from the Truth; moments of recognition and laughter; moments of awakening beyond what I *thought* was “the dream.” While walking down a walking path one day a couple of years ago, suddenly everything became more vivid, more vibrant, more *real.*  I realized that this was not a “dream”, but Aliveness Itself, living Here – as THIS.  I actually laughed and cried at the same time – experiencing the radiant brilliance of the Inherent Aliveness that infuses everything.

Calling it a “dream”, or an illusion, seems like a misnomer – to me. :)  It implies that existence, as we know it, isn’t “real.”  But it *is* real.  It is Alive!  Even after “awakening” from/to “the dream”, this thing we *call* “the dream” continues.  It is being lived.  The only difference is – when we wake up, we see what’s behind the dream – the Consciousness, the Inherent Awake Awareness operating *in* and *as* “the dream.”  Everything becomes fully alive – fully real.  We see what we *thought* was “the dream” as being separate from “Reality” is really one fluid, effortless movement of Being, a radiant brilliance of Aliveness, not an “illusion.”  We feel and experience the hum of Life, the Light of Life *in* and *as* everything.  Not either/or - not separate.  Consciousness never sees Itself as anything other than Itself, as anything other than Real – even the so-called “dream.”  We see that what is considered “the dream” is Life living ItSelf in form, an expression of Consciousness ItSelf.  

Everything is Alive

Everything is Nothing
and Nothing is Everything.

Form is formless,
Formless is form…

It’s all Awareness,
expressions of Consciousness,
enjoying the experience of ItSelf…

Wake up and laugh!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Limitation of Thoughts and Stories...

This video came to me through the Non-Duality Highlights Newsletter.

This guy is good and funny!
 He humorously, through mime,
 demonstrates the nature of thoughts and stories
that limit our ability to live fully.

He's original and unique...

And sometimes hearing Truth
in a different way
helps one to see it more clearly...

Pardon the promotional at the end of the video.
It’s worth it! 

Friday, June 1, 2012

Up In Smoke ~ ~ ~

I awoke Thursday with the usual feeling of “fear and dread” that constricts the body before rising.   I recognize it each morning and wonder where it comes from.  I am not conscious of what the mind must be thinking to create such a state before awakening that would leave such a residue.  It indicates to me that there must be something *before* the first thought, some automatic conditioning in the body-mind that kicks in as I awake.  There is and always has been this ever-present “Fear Gate.” 

Settling into the meditation chair, after lighting the candles, and striking the bowl – I journaled a few notes before meditation, as is my practice - noting that the “Fear Gate” had closed tight around me; also noting how it keeps me on the edge, on the surface, unable to go deeply into the core of Beingness.

As I was sitting, feeling the struggle of resistance trying to meet the fear, something caught my eye.  I had lit a stick of incense, as I always do, just outside the room I sit in, out of view, so as not to overwhelm the small room (and myself) with smoke.  But my attention was suddenly captured by swirls of smoke passing by the door, dancing in the sunlight streaming in from the skylight.  I got up to experience the phenomena more fully, and managed to “capture” a few shots of the swirling smoke.

I love how Life presents us with metaphors for the things we tend to struggle with.  And of course we can read any meaning into it that we want.  But if we listen Life speaks to us in ways that we can hear and understand.

I continued to watch in wonderment as the smoke from the incense danced in the light, leaving intricate fluid designs that changed and dissipated into haze – there and gone.  The dance of form and formlessness, taking shape and dissipating fluidly, dancing with the air currents effortlessly…  And it became clear what the “spiritual teachers” say - how solidly we *perceive* things to be – our thoughts, feelings, emotions, beliefs, opinions, our selves, life, etc.  Yet they are just smoke, forming and dissipating with the movement of life – unless – we try to hold onto them, grasping at smoke with our mind – believing them and making them solid.

After the dance of light and smoke I was pleasantly surprised to find that the sense of fear and dread was gone.  It had dissipated – like the smoke.    Curiosity and playfulness *allowed* the solidification of the fear to dissipate from the mind, from focus - even if momentarily.  Through curiosity and playfulness the “Fear Gate” released and I evidently entered a state of open Awareness.  

Fear is of the “me-mind” - and the “me” contracts into fear – the form of fear.  Our formless Beingness (True Nature) holds no grip on fear and is not constrained by fear’s form.  It is totally free of fear and only experiences fear through the “me-function” – the particular arrangement of thoughts, feelings, beliefs and identifications that we call “me.”   But in wide open Awareness there is no fear – only the dance of smoke and light.   I know these things to be true, hearing them all before, and yet I continue to fear – amazing.  What was understood in this phenomena of smoke was that when we occupy the space of inherent Awareness fear loses its grip – opens its gate and dissipates – if only in that moment.  But it was enough to allow me to see what I needed to see, which was that *everything* is smoke, *everything* dissipates back into the open space of fluid, formless Aware Consciousness.  We only need to bring our attention to that Space – the space of inherent Conscious Awareness that is curious and unafraid; instinctive – not reactive; intuitive – not based in mental concepts.  It is aware of *everything* but does not *identify* itself *as* or with anything, including feelings, emotions, and thoughts – or the “me” - but remains unaffected and effortlessly fluid.

Having this re-cognition does not mean that the feeling of “fear and dread” has burned away completely.  I still woke up today in the smoke swirls of fear and dread – totally disappointed that my insight wasn’t a “cure.”  It’s a deeply engrained automatic pattern.  And it feels like an ongoing process of re-orientation - of turning again and again to the awareness of  the wide open space of Aware Consciousness, remembering that what I believe to be me, my thoughts, my feelings, and “my life” are just ~ smoke ~~~~