Saturday, July 25, 2009

Balance, Change, and WTF?

I had begun to think I had lost my voice for writing and for teaching. Why? Well as some of you may know I am in the midst of the anti-climatic end to a relationship...
The important thing here is not that the relationship is over, but that I like myself when I look in the mirror. Obviously a mourning has to take place... and at times I find myself forgetting how an empathic person is affected by the world, let alone when they are having their own fray of feelings to manuever through.
I do recognise that change helps a girl grow. That unintentionally, living a life in service to family and partners without a clear understanding of self and self love, is... well at best a distraction, and perhaps at worst damaging to the soul. Apparently the EGO can survive well in the midst of that type of life!
Feeling off center, not quite sure of my purpose, and generally wondering when the feeling would pass has been an interesting way to spend the last month and a half. It never ceases to amaze me that no matter how much work a girl does.... there are always deeper levels to go.
I have learned that sometimes you have to be willing to just say the truth and let the chips fall where they may no matter what anyone around you thinks, says, or feels... what is true for you is simply just true.... well until it isn't anymore... that funny little thing called growth. I have learned that it is ok to focus solely on myself and to unplug my consciousness, my energy, my mind, and my soul from other people and their thoughts, judgements, and desires. I have learned... that too much dairy gives my a nasty looking rash on my face... I have learned that without Reiki, self hypnosis, and journaling... I might be insane rather that just somewhat off center.

Most of all though, today when I felt more off center than I have since all of this began I learned... that a tree is a tree. Now before you laugh and think, yup... maybe she is insane after all....
I took a blanket to a favorite place of mine, sure I packed my camera, my books, my journal... my cell phone too.... There I go hiking over to a very beautiful place and lay my blanket down in the midst of three large trees... Wouldn't you know I forgot my pens? Now what, no direction... no great ideas to write down... no great vomitting of old icky baggage out onto paper to help me feel better?
Instead of focussing on the thought that I had screwed up my little journey by not bring my pens with me I chose instead to surrender. I just sat there and allowed myself to feel. I allowed the tension and pressure in my body to drain away into the ground beneathe me. I felt the breeze on my skin... I allowed my diaphragm to relax and take in more air.... I sat... and sat... and sat... When I got tired of sitting I chose to lay down. I gazed at the blue sky through the tops of the trees and listened to the tree frogs and I relaxed myself even more into the ground... that is when I learned the golden truth....
A tree is just a tree... I followed the ridges in the bark with my eyes, along the branches, until they became lost in the green of the leaves. I became extremely interested in the moss hanging from the tree limbs, and the sky above... and even the sun that dappled my body through the folliage that I was lying under. There was no great force of shuddering, no golden light pouring through to bathe my body as the truth swept gently through my mind. A tree is a tree and it does not venture to become anything but itself, it stays firmly grounded and it stretches high into the sky... really when was the last time you saw a tree attempt to weave itself into a car, or a rock, or even to become water? A tree doesn't enter the race of to have's and to be's... we humans do that.
That was when it happened... I found my center, my joy, and my purpose... and here is the big secret.... I just get to be me... no more and no less... and no one has to approve of it... because I feel that as the days pass I will focus more on those trees... more on the truth... that I am here for my enjoyment, my growth, and my happiness... there doesn't really have to be any other reason.
So with a simple shrug... I will unplug and go make that beautiful sock eye salmon, green beans, and some lovely fresh french bread and watch a movie... just because I want to....
Who are you? Where are you? And have you found your joy today?

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Empty Cup

One day, a university professor who taught philosophy went to visit a famous Zen master for tea. While they sat, the professor talked and talked about 'Zen' posing hypotheses, recounting what he'd learned, arguing with...
well, with himself...because while he sat there, talking...the Zen master was preparing tea.
The Master placed a cup in front of the professor, and one in front of himself, and poured tea into his cup, right up to the brim, but even as the cup filled, the master kept pouring...
Soon tea spilled over the sides and pooled on the table, which is when the professor said:
"Master - stop - my cup is full! "
To which the master replied:
"You are like this cup. How can I show you Zen if you do not empty your cup?"
I have spent the last few months gearing up for some big changes in my life. Gathering the information and ideas I felt I would need to support myself through such incredible life altering changes.
As I sat here today, feeling as though it was time to write, and wondering what on Earth I really had to say, I gazed out of the upstairs window... seeing tree tops and clouds and birds flying in the sky. The feeling I had at that moment was how much less complicated life is when we are above the cement of the world where the thoughts and actions live, moving around through our daily lives pushing and pulling ourselves and our desires.
More than preparing for changes for the past few months I have been preparing myself for the last few years. Consciously peeling away those things that stand in the way of my mind's liberation. My dedication to my spiritual path has brought me to this point...
The Ego says "The sky is falling the sky is falling.... it is the end of the world and life as we know it... run, hide, give up, give in, close your eyes, stop listening!" My ego remains ever more dramatic...
The truth in my soul whispers... this is the empty cup... trust... have faith... be not afraid...
I always enjoyed the Hatha yoga that I learned through a video tape that my Guru released quite a few years back. The knowledge that the true movement in yoga was in the stillness BETWEEN the movements has always intrigued me.
So many of us focus on what we are doing, forcing, or considering and making the mistake in thinking that this is where the true growth and learning comes from. When all along... the truth is always under our noses... the silence between the undertakings, changes, challenges, and opportunities is where wisdom is cultivated.
I am accepting the experience of my empty cup...
No pushing, no pulling, no forcing.... what a release of spiritual information is available to me in this process, I feel humbled by the experience and by all the souls that have assisted in bringing me to this place.
I appreciate your precious time and wish you the experience of a profoundly empty cup!