Making Love to Loneliness

After my recent post, “Letting Love Slice Me into One”, my beloved blogging friend, Arlene (aka expressed some compassionate concern that I was in a funk.  Yeah… that’s one way of putting it… Well Arlene, I am writing to you personally right now and as well, I want to share this with others because it feels like an important message for me to express to many.  But first, thank you for caring so deeply for me, and for all whom your immense, courageous heart dost embrace!

One of the guiding lights along my path is the twelfth century Persian poet, Hafiz.  The brotha knows what is up.  He’s wild.  He’s free.  And he’s unabashedly drunk on the All Pervading Friend.  I used to have this poem hand written and taped up above my bed, because it felt like something that I needed to remember every single day of my life~

My Eyes So Soft



Your loneliness so quickly,

Let it cut more


Let it ferment and season you

As few human

Or even divine ingredients can.

Something missing in my heart tonight

Has made my eyes so soft,

My voice so


My need of God



This is why I did not try to run from or avoid my loneliness the other day.  I want to be carved out like a freaky jack o lantern, lit from the inside with a sweet scented votive and left out in our dark world so that my eyes glow and blaze with undeniable, soothing truth and kindness for all.

It’s an art… to visit that utterly lonely place without getting stuck or stagnant there.  Without making it mean anything, (and I mean ANY thing) about you, about God, about life.  Without judging it as “BAD”.   No… just to BE there.  And then, to recognize when it has passed and gracefully dance with that which arises next.  The mind loves to hold on to everything and create an identity around it.  “I’m Athena and I’m so lonely… I must be depressed.  There must be something WRONG with me.  But at least I know I EXIST!  At least I can avoid facing the Great Emptiness that is always humming from somewhere deep inside me.”

You see what I mean?  And our mindlessly consuming society is built on this fear of emptiness.  “Uh-oh, I feel empty.  I’d better reach outside of myself in desperation to make this go away.  Who or what can fix me?  Here, TAKE my money!!!  Just make this unavoidable human ache subside for long enough to keep me three and a half quarters blissfully asleep!”

Beloveds, do not fear the shadows.  In this silly dream of division and duality, they are vital for recognizing the light.  Loneliness.  Forgetting the oceanic, resplendent, All Pervading Love that we ARE is about the loneliest thing I can imagine.  I LOVE You, Arlene!  And I feel your Love for me.  And because of this, I know the world is infinitely more blessed.

Friends, let your loneliness carve you, artistically into exquisite jack o lanterns and together we shall celebrate the infinite glowing faces of God in this magnificently dark world!


11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. duke1959
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 13:51:51

    Just remember that you are never alone and that you are important!


  2. spirit2go
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 14:02:20

    thank you, Athenagrace….

    Yes, I DO see your point, and it’s a good one. thinking about my recommendation to you, it wasn’t right for you. For myself – my pain has been going on so long, I just want to get away for a time – even if that is sleeping unawares. Your take on it is healthy for you – you live it, sleep with it, become friends with it –you finally come to an understanding. Then you can make peace – wish it well – send it into the Light!

    You are strong and you are conscious (pretty wise, too!)



  3. Adam Lofbomm
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 14:10:01

    Just fantastic, Athena Grace, fantastic. So well said and what excellent timing for me to receive this message as well. Thanks and love to you, sister. So glad you’re still awesome.


  4. Guy Jara
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 14:12:09

    So true. So timely. Thank you for this gorgeous and compassionate reminder to abide at the center and source of all things. I’m bookmarking this one. Big love! ❤


  5. dan
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 15:17:01

    Trapped in this place of darkness

    Fear wraps it’s claws around my heart

    It’s teeth bite down on my soul

    Sadness and anger feeding the shadow in my mind

    I want it to end

    Want it to stop

    Yet I don’t try

    I hate the feeling

    Yet I love it

    I want myself back

    Yet i need it

    The grip tightens

    The teeth clench

    My soul bleeds out insanity

    Light fades away

    Shadows cast shadows

    The fear is gone

    I am me

    Yet I am not

    Only God



  6. Sumitra
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 15:47:13

    Having known you as long as I have, I know what a triumph it is for you to be able to feel and write these words, and to MEAN them, and thus, all of us you have reached today are wiser and renewed. Loneliness can go so many more directions than sadness or pain or suffering. It can lead to peace or joy or understanding…or…one day, maybe samadhi! Thank you. You’re the best!


  7. Rosy Moon
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 16:40:47

    Aaaaargh, you write so beautifully! I’m reading Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott and she (as I’m sure you know) advises writing honestly and boldly. I love how honest you are, and bold, and there is such a dripping gorgeousness to your expression, it floors me with regularity. So there’s that, and then the content, the meaning of your words today. As one who risks being alone to do my practices as you do, I know the ropes of both avoidance of and surrender to that carving knife. Reading your invitation is delightful and inspiring, mmmm, I’m in a unique readers bliss, thank you!


  8. souldipper
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 20:13:22


    Love Wins! You’ve just demonstrated it again.

    And I have to address the fact that I see you as a very Anne Lamott type writer. Now, you know that is not to say you are a typewriter…you only carry one of those… No, you are unique, and uniquely capable of expressing such authenticity.

    I LOVE YOU FOR THAT! Oh, I’m shouting. First cousin to swearing…let me take another run at expressing how I feel about you:

    If God said I had to choose a person to invite to Kenya to give love to AIDS orphans, you would be on the top of the list. Those children would not simply be served love in every thing you did for them, all of Athena Grace would be in every one of those gestures.

    Oh and another thing you brought to mind, bless your little lonely heart – another Sufi poet, Attar, said this about Self-Transformation: “The first step is to say, ‘God’, and nothing else; the second is intimacy; and the third is to burn.”

    The phoenix rises from the ashes and invites us to hop on! j’ai t’aime – Amy


  9. Suzanne Q
    Jul 23, 2010 @ 22:10:51

    Dawn Athena Grace Courage! For some reason that’s the name that wanted to be called loud and boldly in your direction…..

    I love you, you wise wrestling deeply seeing surrendering so completely there’s nothing to say but ‘god you are gorgeous’ woman. May peace be with you always, even in the lonely moments.


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