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Archive for October, 2009

08-12-EagerInnocenceArt by Rassouli

I’m the slave of the Moon. Talk of nothing but moon,
or brightness and sweetness. Other than that, say nothing.

Don’t tell of suffering, talk of nothing but blessings.
If you know nothing about them, no matter.  Say nothing.

Last night I went wild. Love saw me and said:
I’m here. Don’t shout, don’t rip your shirt, say nothing.

I said: O Love, what I fear is something else.
—There’s nothing there. Say nothing.

I’ll whisper secret words in your ears. Just nod yes.
Except for that nod of your head, say nothing.

A moon pure as spirit rose on the heart’s pathway.
How delightful, to travel the way of the heart. Say nothing.

I said: O Heart, what is this moon? Heart beckoned:
For now, it’s not for you to know. Say nothing.

I said: Is this face angel or human?
Neither angel nor human. It is other, say nothing.

I said: What’s this? I’ll lose my mind if you don’t tell me.
He said: Then lose your mind, and stay that way. Say nothing.

You who sit in this house filled with images and illusions,
get up, walk out the door. Go, and say nothing.

I said: O Heart, tell me kindly: Isn’t this about God?
He said: Yes it is, but kindly say nothing.

~Rumi: Say Nothing~
Poems of Jalal al-Din Rumi in Persian and English
Translated by Iraj Anvar & Anne Twitty

*my gratitude to Terri C. for introducing me to this poem and these two translators.

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horseThere is an old Taoist parable.  It begins with a poor farmer in ancient China who worked a small plot of land with his teenage son. During this time horses were considered a sign of wealth; the richest person in the province owned no more than a few of them. One day a wild horse jumped the poor farmer’s fence and began grazing on his land. According to local law, this meant that the horse now rightfully belonged to him and his family. The son could hardly contain his joy, but the father put his hand on his son’s shoulder and said, “Who knows what’s good or bad?” The next day the horse made its escape back to the mountains and the boy was heartbroken. “Who knows what’s good or bad?” his father said again.  On the third day the horse returned with a dozen wild horses following.  “We’re rich!” the son cried, to which the father again replied, “Who knows what’s good or bad?” On the fourth day the boy climbed on one of the wild horses and was thrown, breaking his leg. His father ran to get the doctor; soon both of them were attending to the boy, who was upset and in a great deal of pain. The old farmer looked deeply into his son’s eyes, and said, “My son, who knows what is good or bad?” And on the fifth day the province went to war.  Army recruiters came through the town and took all the eligible young men to fight the war.  All except for the young man with the broken leg.

This is such a beautiful illustration of why it’s relevent to suspend judgment, conclusions and assumptions about anything.  Judgements and the like don’t reflect the bigger picture.  We don’t always know in the heat of any moment, what is good what is bad.  What is a blessing, what is a gift, what is a challenge in the moment that provides further expansion for us later.  We don’t always know, but we can remain open.  We can lay aside the impulse to make any seeming fact mean anything.  We can trust that the nature of all things is continually unfolding – and perhaps find a lot more ease in this open and receptive place.

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shiva-aum

When you come before me, rejoice, because rejoicing implies that something
has happened which you desired. Come before me singing, giving praise, and
giving thanks, for these states of mind imply acceptance of the state sought.
Put yourself in the proper mood and your own consciousness will embody it.

If I could define prayer for anyone and put it just as clearly as I could, I would
simply say, “It is the feeling of the wish fulfilled.” If you ask, “What do you mean
by that?” I would say, “I would feel myself into the situation of the answered
prayer and then I would live and act upon that conviction.” I would try to sustain
it without effort, that is, I would live and act as though it were already a fact,
knowing that as I walk in this fixed attitude my assumption will harden into fact.

~Neville Goddard~

I love that – come before me singing, giving praise, and giving thanks.  This is the
essence of gratitude.  And what it lays witness to is the you that has embodied the desire.  No more lingering doubts now, it’s so much a part of you.  This is more than faith and greater than hope, it’s embodying the wish, the desire fulfilled.

Giving yourself to it as if it’s your one true love, fully and without reservation. So much so, that the dream fulfilled is no longer at arm’s length somewhere in the future.  Your internal landscape reflects the you that is living it now.  You feel it in
how you breathe and how you walk, there’s a lightness about you and an ease.
What is left now but to rise up singing and giving thanks!

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Musings at 5 am

catdogart

God couldn’t be here himself
so he clothed his Helpers in fur
and sent them to Earth

be soft he said
and they were

lick he said
and they did

purr he said
and they did

love, love, love he said
as if nothing else ever mattered
and o, how they do.

©heartsdeesire

Image Locale

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trust

Joy Harjo’s poem, appended in part below, really speaks to me at this stage of my life.  I love the honesty and the readiness to take herself back in this poem.  At the end of it, she captures the essence of why we hold onto things long after they’ve outlived their usefulness.

Fear is the language of ways in which we learned to cope earlier on, protective shields we developed.  And when we are ready or shall I say, when I am ready to step into the me who is fearless and fully trusts herself what has held me back is that which is afraid of dying.  This dying is abandoning what has contained me inside the illusion of safety.

All versions of ourselves already exist in this vast Universe, this is what Seth wrote of and the new quantum physics seems to support.  So lately, I’m in conversation with the me who is fearful and the version of me who fully trusts herself.  We are negotiating, you could say.  What is there to lose except a life that constricts and confines, I ask the afraid me.  Fearful me answers that it finds refuge in that very constriction.

Every day I continue the conversation, waiting for my willingness to abandon the old order in favor of the new.  As yet, I’m not willing.  Just for now, I’ll honor the one who is not yet willing.  Ironically, I continue to boldly trust that I will be willing one day soon.

There’s a me who leaves no consciousness stone unturned.  I shall not turn this stone over and then set it safely back down in its place and I shall not live with a heart that opens just enough.  One day soon a new conversation will unfold:  remember when you were so afraid?  Yes, I remember when.  It had its time, its reason and its story.  I released her in favor of being the one who is wide open, boundless and free, she trusts herself and herself in the world.  Where I was once so afraid of losing myself instead I found the fullness of who I Am.

* * *

I release you, fear, so you can no longer
keep me naked and frozen in the winter,
or smothered under blankets in the summer.

I release you
I release you
I release you
I release you

I am not afraid to be angry.
I am not afraid to rejoice.
I am not afraid to be black.
I am not afraid to be white.
I am not afraid to be hungry.
I am not afraid to be full.
I am not afraid to be hated.
I am not afraid to be loved.

To be loved, to be loved, fear.

Oh, you have choked me, but I gave you the leash.
You have gutted me but I gave you the knife.
You have devoured me, but I laid myself across the fire.

I take myself back, fear.
You are not my shadow any longer.
I won’t hold you in my hands.
You can’t live in my eyes, my ears, my voice
my belly, or in my heart my heart
my heart    my heart

But come here, fear
I am alive and you are so afraid

of dying.

~Joy Harjo~
what have you lost?
Poems Selected by Naomi Shihab Nye

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This is my favorite movie of all time.  As the years have passed since I first watched it as a child, I see that its meaning is multi-layered.

Home is where Dorothy wants to return and finds that she always had that power to get back home via the ruby slippers. Yet, when she wakes up in her own bed, she’s told she never left home at all.  She was just dreaming a dream that she had left it.

Home then becomes a metaphor for Who We Really Are, the stuff of God.  And, we, too, can never leave it.  We can only dream a dream that we have left it.  Dream a dream that we are separate and not whole.  But it’s only a dream that we leave home.  We can’t ever really leave home.  We don’t undock from the
“mother ship”.  It’s not possible, not even in death.  So the perception of separateness becomes the dream we are dreaming.

And then we wake up, little by little, in stages at times and remember that Who We Really Are is whole and perfect and so much an integral part of this beautiful, friendly, benevolent, grace filled and peaceful Universe.

I believe that promise of waking up from the dream of separateness, pulses at all times within each of us.  Call that promise the ruby slippers, if you will, but it’s no magic.  It’s real and any moment is a moment to stop what we are doing, take a deep and conscious breath and remember Who We Really Are right now.  We are that beautiful, peaceful, benevolent, friendly, grace filled Universe, too.

Breathing in beauty, I remember.
Breathing in peace, I remember.
Breathing in benevolence, I remember.
Breathing in friendship, I remember.
Breathing in grace, I remember.

I remember, I am home.  I never really left it, after all.  And yes, Dorothy, there is no place like Home.

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22698moongoddess1Image Locale

Simply do this:

Be still, and lay aside all thoughts of what you are and what God is;

all concepts you have learned about the world;

all images you hold about yourself.

Empty your mind of everything it thinks is either true or false, or good or bad,

of every thought it judges worthy, and all ideas of which it is ashamed.

Hold onto nothing.

Do not bring with you one thought the past has taught,

nor one belief you ever learned before from anything.

Forget this world,

forget this course,

and come with wholy empty hands

unto your God.

~A Course in Miracles~

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kaleidoscope_kids

I had often felt the words: “the world is a mirror” sounded like another spiritual cliche and I would almost bristle at hearing it.  It’s one of those things I asked myself: what the hell does that mean?!

Now I have someone in my life that does appear to be a mirror of sorts.  Let’s call her Rea, short for reality.  I realized she is the outpicturing of me.  The me of two minds on a subject that is near and dear to my heart.

There is the me who believes in the happy ending.  I’ve even seen and felt that happy ending, in my mind’s eye.

Then there is the me who gives myself to the “reality” of what appears to be, in the moment, an undesirable unfolding.  Something that I take to count against my happy ending.  I put my spiritual stock in that other consciousness, the me who gives up her faith in lieu of what looks like the facts before her.

Now my friend Rea is often given to saying things like “let’s face reality here”.  Abraham says don’t face any reality you don’t want to create more of.  I’m sure Seth would chime in similarly and the Field Center states that facing reality is an invitation to counterintend which loosely means to run counter to what you would like to intend about a thing.

I am the one of two consciousnesses, of two minds and Rea is the stark image and reflection, the mirror of what this other mind gives its allegiance to.

Yet I have other examples in my life of people who reflect my consciousness that carries faith in the desired outcome.  But who do I pay more attention to but the one who pisses me off with her “let’s face reality” spewings.  I’m mad that she might be right yet I’m mad at my own reflection, my own outpicturing of one part of my consciousness.  Mad at my own ability to create such a good mirror of myself.

Why is it so easy to be seduced by a mindset I don’t want?  It’s a question I’m not even going to answer.  The why doesn’t matter and answering it won’t provide me with greater consistency.  The practice matters and the consistency of it matters most of all.  If I’m going to be inconsistent, of two minds, I’m going to see lots of people and circumstances outpicturing my inconsistencies.  I should thank them, they tell me exactly where I’m vibe-ing.  They invite me to be restored again to One Mind.  I accept the invitation willingly and gladly.

I am free to be seduced by outer conditions and I am free to remain faithful to that which is not yet seen in the “flesh”.  I’ve seen it in my mind’s eye, I’ve felt it, I’ve lived it there.  It lives, it breathes, it walks, it talks.  This is what I choose to be captivated and enamored with.

No one says it better than Rumi:

Close your eyes.

(see it in your mind’s eye)

Fall in love.

(let yourself fall in love with the ideal, let yourself be captivated by it)

Stay there.

(stay consistent)

And if I should see the outpicturing of inconsistency again, I won’t shoot the messenger.  I will thank them, truly, for the invitation to fall in love again with what I believe in.  Should I be held spellbound by anything, let it be by that which is my heart’s desire.  Let me lose myself inside that inner world where it already exists and let the outer world do what it does, I have my own world to attend to.

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plainandsimple

If there is such a thing as poetic license, I am certainly taking it now.  I have created what is known as a ‘found’ poem.  Up until now, this poem has not existed.  I have selected a couple of lines each from eight different poems and two different authors.  I chose Mary Oliver and Wendell Berry for this creation.  At the end of this found poem, I have cited the poems I used.

If you like to play with poetry, you can do this, too.  I found it a wonderful exercise as something to just drop the day’s events and lose myself inside the soft belly of poetry.  Enjoy…

* * *

I would like to write a poem about the world
that has in it, nothing fancy

Like our travels, our workdays
burned upon the world.

And forgetting everything I will leap to name it
as though for the first time

Turning always in my mind toward you,
your slopes, folds, gentle openings.

As a poem or a prayer, can also make
luminous any dark place on earth.

Maybe we’re necessary to each other,
and this vacant place has need of us both.

Calling us back to why, how and whence
such beauty and what the meaning.

To its joy we come together–the seer
and the seen, the eater and the eaten,
the lover and the loved.

* * *

Each verse was extracted from individual poems.  The pattern begins with Mary Oliver, then Wendell Berry and continues to alternate authors and poems throughout, ending with Wendell Berry.  The following references the poems used in the order that they appear:
Mary Oliver, This World
Wendell Berry, Horses
Mary Oliver, Tasting the Wild Grapes
Wendell Berry, Letter
Mary Oliver, May
Wendell Berry, A Music
Mary Oliver, First Snow
Wendell Berry, The Hidden Singer

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