The Great Unveiling

I realized this morning a bit of why I haven’t been inspired to write of late. This year has been immensely transitional for me in many ways ‘unseen.’ It came to me in these three words: The Great Unveiling.

That’s how I would define the first four months of 2012. Filled with such pure intensity of soul truth, there is no escape. The layers of protection are forced to break apart, fears no longer carry enough power to hold it all together. The need for ‘order’ and ‘togetherness’ out of balance with a force of authentic presence filled with human imperfections, enfolded in Divine energy. It’s the deepest longing of who we are–to release the stuff that weighs us down and honor the sacredness of our soul.

And to write amongst the movement of this space requires an honesty so pure it has felt uncomfortable to share these depths of intimacy in such public space. There is less and less ability to bring the words together in the mind’s wisdom and the eye’s beauty. Instead, there is a raw, searing dialogue of what is real in the heart–a place not always ‘presentable’ to the world. 

It seems to have begun when a blogging friend talked about ‘perfection.’ Once the sting had gone out of her words, I began to see the truth of it–how much of my life is geared toward striving for perfection, just ‘right,’ the best choice, being the bigger person. All these cliches that remove us more and more from our true feelings in favor of presenting ourselves in a positive light to the world–but really to ourselves. Admitting to such ego-centered efforts about myself, seeing clearly how I have bought into something my heart can’t support–has been at times painful and humiliating. Most of all between myself and All That Is. Because very few people are even aware of what is happening within my own inner landscape. And yet–I find support, love and grace around every corner.

Honoring our truth, living with authentic purpose–these are not simple things to do. They come enshrouded in our own undoing. We must be broken in order to become wholly committed to our Divine purpose. The Great Unveiling. Meant for me. Between me and the Divine. No one need tell me, guide me, help me to see it. It occurs all on its own. And the only way to maneuver through it is to feel it….and then choose to allow it. Surrender. Grace. These are the companions meant for this journey.

And if you are blessed enough to recognize it, you’ll find you are joined too by soul companions who will stand with you as witness to your truth, reflecting by their very nature a spirit of loving gentleness. Thank you to those who have done so for me. 

Undoing ‘Good’

The first line of Mary Oliver’s poem, Wild Geese, playing with my thoughts, my heart, my emotions this morning–and quite suddenly. 

‘YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE GOOD’

It’s one of my most favorite lines of poetry, seared into my consciousness during an intensive with my beloved teacher Andrew Harvey. I loved it as soon as I heard it–felt something release inside myself, liberated. 

Raw, random, personal thoughts fill the space in this post….followed by a pause, feeling, listening, tuning in. What does that mean: ‘You do not have to be good’ ? 

It seems to be a statement to define the unraveling of who we ‘thought’ we were–who I thought I was. 

Every time it comes around again, it feels as though there is a clear shift occurring in my belief system, very visible, very palpably felt. While I’m not yet ready to share the details of this transition, I’m soothed by Mary Oliver’s statement to us all: You do not have to be good. 

Funny how it is, though isn’t it–‘good’–a goal we can chase all our lives and never quite reach it. 

Because it’s a fallacy, an illusion that we have taken on and decided holds our truth. 

Then just as we release one layer of that illusion, another reveals itself–opening the cracks that lead to healing, surrender….wholeness. 

And so it goes….the spiral, the cycle of this journey. Letting go….of ‘being good.’ 

Instead….just BEing. Allowing. 

Thank you, Mary Oliver for sharing such richness and Universal truth. 

My statement to myself this day: I do not have to be good. 

I have only to be ME. And THAT is enough. 

Love’s Post-A-Day

I think I could write a post a day on all the properties, experiences, lessons, joys, heartbreak, inspiration (you get the idea) of love. She comes to us in so many forms, not the least of which is through the cracks in our hearts. Today’s Lesson: Moving past the frustration, through the heartbreak and into the space of love’s purity. 

So often I hear Rumi’s word in my heart: the crack, the wound is where the light shines through. As I laid on my pillow letting tears flow last night, recognizing for the first time with great clarity a deep heart pain, I nearly smiled with the truth of it. Amidst all of this, there is radiant light beginning to seep into through the jagged edges of heartbreak. I know the words, all too well. I’ve watched my mom go through ‘letting go’ of her five children as we grew into adults. Perhaps with little enough appreciation and definitely void of any understanding of what was really occurring in the deepest space of her heart. We give them birth, feeling even then our heartspace cracking wide open with a love we didn’t know was possible. As our children grow, we revel in our ability to provide their needs, nurture their spirit, honor their individuality. Without even giving a thought to the day when they DON’T need us; when we cease to be the center of their world. When the careful work we have done to let them make choices and be who they are suddenly becomes the impetus to a disengagement from their dependence on us. And truthfully my friends – I would have been the last one to expect this of myself, but I must tell you – it hurts like hell. 

I wasn’t prepared – at all – for the level of heartbreak I’m recognizing in myself. Nope, not me. I’ve done deep pain release, letting it all go in cries that come from the darkest places of our insides. I’m good. Ready to go forward with a happy excitement for the next chapter of our lives. I THOUGHT. I was wrong. NOTHING in me was ready for this–for the realization that I’m holding on so tightly I’m creating conflict. I’ve forgotten that I want to LOVE, unconditionally. The pain became the lead, so quietly, covertly–converting into frustration and the belief that I was doing what was ‘best.’ But what I learned a few years back to do with my husband is just what I need to connect with as a mother: just love. Stop waiting for them to become what I see would be good, better, best for them. Stop wanting them to be what they are not. For gosh sakes, Jackie, stop trying to bend the situation to YOUR will. Love. Love them because YOU want to, not because they’re asking, not because they appreciate it–do it for the greatest reason there is: because YOU want to. Because I want to. 

 

Surrender. Let go. Once again, I find myself sitting deep in the center of these words. Follow the truth I believe in wholeheartedly and let this child go. Surrender their well-being to the Universe, who of course is much more qualified than you. Ugh. Dearest friends, I couldn’t see it. I couldn’t find this truth amongst the hurt overlaid with frustration. But I’m feeling it…and finding more peace as the day goes on and it settles in. 

And yet….I know in the core of my being – this is his path. He is fully held in the arms of grace. I’ve said it so many times, haven’t I? Do you believe it Jackie? Yes, yes, I do. Then LET go. 

And love. Just love. I know this harmony so well. Being able to view the situation with a bit more clarity, to release the frustration, to feel the heartbreak….I can find my way into the power of love. SHE will be our guide, now that I’m getting out of the way.

I’m grateful for the gift of clarity, of seeing this situation from a new perspective and reconnecting to a truth I can emulate: BE love. Love because YOU want to….because your heart longs to. xo 

 

Unconditional Love Exposed ~ NoCZ Challenge 2012

If I am convinced it’s love – unconditional love, wouldn’t that necessitate the love pushing any and all fear out so that it could express itself? Maybe it is GRACE that we need, to energize the love to do just that.

The fear of humiliation

FEAR of being Naked

Humiliation and embarrassment are one of the biggest culprits of unfulfilled lives. 

The vortex of self-image – you described it so beautifully. The risk of being who we are and the consequences if we hide.

I Love. I am Love. I do not give it, I be it.

These are some of the provoking thoughts left on my last post, Liberating Love. Although we were away over the weekend, I did read each one and took with me a deep contemplation into the dance between love, fear, humility and humiliation. The notes you each shared left me really searching within for what I feel is true in my own life and how it is that fear and love can move together. 

Because I do believe they can. I’m not certain they can do so elegantly and with a flowing rhythm, but I think we all have a dance that goes around inside of us between these two. The reality, however, is that the love is the TRUTH from a universal perspective – it’s what’s real, who we are, the ‘stuff’ of which we are made. Fear comes from the conditioning we’ve taken on in our lives and/or the lessons we are here to experience. While LOVE is what’s always there in the core of who we are, fear can sometimes mask its presence and overtake any desire we have to let our love Flow.

Isn’t that what this journey is really all about? Aren’t we here to move through our fears and let the love really shine from our souls? It’s not always love of a partner or significant other, our children, our family. What about the ability to love a co-worker? To love ourselves enough to live out loud who we are? Loving our planet, the Life that is contained on it. Love goes far beyond just being unconditional in how we interact with those whom we *know we love. The ability to love without conditions across the board of our lives is something entirely different – and in my world, it requires a soul with stamina to hold that altitude. It doesn’t just happen because I *wish it to be so. It requires a consistent practice of looking inward, seeing and acknowledging the fears and then choosing to take each one by the hand and walk forward together rather than be controlled by them. 

Do you have the courage, the stamina in your soul to let your Love flow unconditionally? No matter how it looks? 

Each of your comments above holds truth, my dear friends. Love what Janece has said about grace – and I do believe you are right on. The grace is the heat we need to melt through the fears and release the love. Love is truth while fear is illusion. But as a human – I believe we can experience both together. We do, however, have to choose which one we will give our power to – and when we call on the healing and releasing power of grace, the love prevails. 

Humility and humiliation. Somehow, somewhere in our lives, we all come face to face with these two. It’s not always someone outside of us who brings the humiliation into our energy field. In fact, we often do so ourselves. WE hold the keys of seeing what it might ‘look like.’ And yes, Miro – it lends to a lack of feeling fulfilled in our lives. We hold ourselves back, preventing the sacred from entering our presence out of the fear of how we might be perceived. When we surrender those fears and step into the guidance we are being given, humility takes over. Humility as in ‘resignation, non-resistance.‘ We SURRENDER and become vessels of service, love, healing for the Divine. 

NAKED. I love that you used this word, Cat because just yesterday someone who is a nudist made the comment that they are not ‘naked’ – they are ‘nude.’ Naked implies vulnerability, whereas nude is a natural state of being. I’m not a nudist myself, however I easily understood what he was saying. Being a nudist is a choice. Feeling naked can be disempowering. Humility is a choice for the mystic who seeks to live in the grace of Divine love. Humiliation comes from the human fear of what I might look like. 

Lee so beautifully summed it up: ‘The risk of being who we are and the consequences if we hide.’ Isn’t that what it comes down to my friends? Isn’t the risk of being who we are worth whatever may come in our lives? That’s where we step into love and out of fear. We stop hiding, we say it openly, honestly, clearly…as Betsy did:

I Love. I am Love. I do not give it, I be it.

When I surrender, let go of fears of being humiliated, invoke grace and step into the energy of my soul, I absolutely AM

~ * ~ 

Writing this post with such clarity and openness is yet another step in my journey of living out loud. I would generally reply to the comments left on my last post and let it be at that. But the conversation was too juicy to leave it there. I’m putting into practice what I believe and letting my soul reply instead. For me – this would have once been risky (very recently) – to so openly say ‘I think’ and ‘I believe’ – even if it might not be what someone else agrees with. I’m honoring the No Comfort Zone Challenge by stepping out of my comfort zone in a whole new way. Letting my love shine, allowing my truth to be spoken out loud, not fearing the consequences. Yes, Joss, we are changing. And I’m reminded of the song from Wicked – ‘You changed me for the good.’ ♥ Thank you to each of you for letting YOUR voice be heard and sparking this conversation to go deeper. xoxo

Without Words

Or perhaps it’s ‘without eloquence.’ Something inside myself feels lacking the ability to connect with the elegance of writing, sharing. Instead I’m feeling overly emotional, unsure of myself, unable to go about the ‘usual’ notes of the day. I’ve had the screaming woman in my head at times, but she’s become instead a heap of tears just waiting for something to trigger their silent march over my cheeks.

It’s been a long time since I’ve felt quite this way–and perhaps I never have in ‘quite this way.’ That longing, the hunger for something more, something deeper, something ELSE is what drives my every moment. There’s no escape, nor do I even feel the energy to try finding one. I’m full IN it.

There aren’t words for whatever this is, other than to say I know there is purpose. It’s the Divine who understands what that could possibly be. And for now–I’m not meant to know; only to trust, to allow, to surrender to its presence.

I can’t help but wonder how it relates to turning 40 this year. There aren’t negative emotions around this age for me, only a sense of stepping wholly into a new space in my life, my self, my soul. There’s a sacredness that transcends the human world and yet paradoxically is infused into every thought, emotion, sensation I experience. As I write that sentence, I realize: while I haven’t been aware and even just said there aren’t negative emotions, perhaps there are negative feelings that trigger emotions. I’ve never been one to worry about my health, my body, being fit and eating right. Yet, the call comes and if I’m honest, I’m not happy about it at all. And in the most intimate place of my being there is the realization that some part of me continues to fight it. Ugh.

I feel so much wrapped up in this time of my life…and the truths are coming even as I type. This is a space in which we once again must go deep within and heal places in ourselves that have remained silent, waiting for us to be at the ready. The physical is one thing, but the whispers remind me there is emotional shifting as well. Surrender. Honor. Letting go. Allowing. These are the short words that are my truth. Women cannot play at being young girls, for we are not. Nor do I truly want to be. Time to bring some of those places within myself to present time, to let the authentic bits of me become even more apparent and out into the open.

Funny isn’t it? I’ve watched our daughter move through the space of honoring who she is as a young gay woman and haven’t felt a kinship to what that must be like in today’s climate. And yet, we each have parts of ourselves that we would rather for a time keep ‘in the closet.’ The warm beauty of Lauren being true to herself is that she continually talks of the liberated sense of being that envelops her on a daily basis. ‘I can just be who I am mom.’ I heard her voice echo in my heart. She is more my teacher than my child in this moment. And I am feeling blessed.

There is a richness in this place, even when I can’t feel it to be so, I know it from the depths of my heart to be what is true. And in the darkest moments, I know too that I am always held in the arms of the Divine–always. So that is where I’ll leave you my friends…..in the presence of Divine love….each one of us wrapped in grace. xoxo

Dancing the Spiral

So far we’ve come as a human race, and yet so far we have still to go. Fear continues to grip us, both in places we ARE aware of and those remaining to be discovered. It seems as much as we do release, we travel onward in the journey of our souls to realize there is more to let go.

As you process this, rather than receive it as discouragement and lack of forward motion, consider that you are a perennial work in progress. Always there is another step to be taken to move closer to embracing fully our Divinity. The music plays on and the dance that at first felt to be a challenge and required focused energy, attention and effort, now becomes a joy in motion. Even when settling into the elegant and graceful glide across the floor, one can still connect even more deeply to the rhythm and Flow inspiring the body, heart and soul to continually move, to dance the dance.

Open yourself to its fluidity, letting it completely enfold you as you become lost in the sacredness of this space. So much more is here for you than the mind can even begin to imagine–for this space lives beyond the thinking self. Let yourself go, breaking away from the gravity of space and time and instead surrendering into the emptiness of BE-ing and the openness and warmth of Divine presence.

The video below played in my ears as I shared this message with each of you, and I encourage you to take just a few moments out of your day to listen and allow it to inspire you, to move your heart, to melt your fears, and to guide you into the depths of your soul’s beautiful light, pure truth and radiant glow. Connect to the Source that IS you, and flows from within YOU. Much love.

Soaking up the Sun

Always there’s activity in Nature outside my office windows, overlooking the back yard. In this moment two birds sit quietly soaking up the sun..one a lovely brown thrasher and the other our ever present companion the robin. Each is in their own space of being, neither seeking to force something into existence. And as I contemplated what was in my heart, they became pure reflections of my own state of being.


Brown Thrasher
Robin

 

 

 

 

 

There’s a lull–a pause, a breath–indeed a heartbeat of time in which it appears as though nothing really is happening.  Reminds me of Socrates in the movie ‘Peaceful Warrior’ teaching Dan:  “There’s never nothing going on.”  And so even while it appears time stands still in this place of my own journey, there is a tremendous amount of inner transformation taking shape.  

I’m merely…’soaking up the sun.’  This is a space in which I am allowing the light to penetrate my spirit and the call of my soul to be felt.  The words aren’t yet clear, but the feeling, the *knowing is certain.  There’s a stirring….of something beyond my own comprehension.  And so it is entirely in the hands of Divine wisdom to guide its unfolding.  For there is very little human action I can find to assist its manifestation.  

Soaking up the sun, allowing its warmth, its love and the grace of its brilliance to envelop my entire being.  Pausing, taking breath and choosing to be still long enough to let it penetrate, rather than flail around in vain attempts to force it into a vessel of being–not its own.  There’s a calm in this place, surrender.  There’s an opening taking shape, creating the way for the presence of Divine being to enter.  And this is exactly where I choose to be…soaking up the sun, welcoming All That Is to use me at will.  The soul needs service.  And I’m going to be still long enough to answer the call.  

The beauty of this place is that even though there is not an earthly direction in which to travel, there is always the deeper connection to my spirit that brings a sense of peace.  So when the heat reaches a temperature that feels unbearable, and when the stillness becomes so silent it feels no longer tolerable…I have only to be still yet another moment and listen….for it is then I feel the all-encompassing embrace of love….in the whispers of my heart…..