Could That Day Be Today?

She drew in a deep assed breath as her fingers hovered taught as thoroughbreds ready to make their thunderous break upon the keys.  She prayed to be moved by beauty and truth, or at least seduced by whimsy, tickled by the mere fact of existence.  Her heart felt like a dried out, pulpy shell, like an orange that had given all of its juice and now sat, waiting to decompose and become once again one with the soil from whence its tree’s very roots had once suckled from the cool, earthy darkness, the very essence of its juice-drenched, fruitful prime.

All that to say, I have had a rough two days.  Rough enough that after a year and a half of not being sick AT ALL, I have come down with a minor though annoying head cold.  Honestly, I truly believed that I would never be sick again, because I don’t believe in sickness. (I still don’t.)  But in spite of that, whoops, I somehow slipped.  Thankfully, word on the street is that “rough” is the new beautiful.  I cried enough in the last two days to last me the whole rest of the year.  But as Reverend Muwatta loves to remind us, the deeper the pain, the greater the joy.  So I guess I have been doing some massive renovations in my heart.  Cool.  I mean my first response is certainly not to praise the hell that I have been flailing through… but you have to remember, I just came from church and at East Bay Church of Religious Science, that’s how we roll.

His Holiness!… I am having an experience that could almost be construed as writer’s block.  What is it?  Oh dear, suddenly, I just feel like crying, A-GAIN.  Because now that my mom reads my blog, I do feel a little inhibited.  I don’t mean to… I feel afraid of being misunderstood, judged, unloved… by everyone, actually.  I feel afraid of being boring.  (To me, that’s the worst thing in the world.)  Like what if I was just wasting my time here on the page, when really, I should just be an accountant after all.  That made me laugh inside.  Phew, a crack of light in an otherwise dark mind.  God, please guide my mind.  Let my mind and my heart be ONE voice.  And let this voice speak on behalf of humanity.  I am here, I am available.  I open myself to the light.  The problem with being available to the light is that I must relinquish preconceived notions of what the light’s expression through me “should” look like.

Really, I just want to talk about… I don’t know.  I’ve been so confused lately.  I suppose that a big theme in the macrocosm is massive genocide of the parts of us that no longer serve on our paths toward and through illumination.  Dying.  Dying.  Can the dying process truly be easy?  Can I just let go and let these old parts of myself fall away like dead skin cells lost forever to the dusty world at large?  Life has been changing me as Life does… and I have found myself suffering… I was gonna say, “suffering intolerably”… but obviously my suffering IS tolerable, since I am here to tell the gory tale.  But the idealist in me has a vision of death that is pure surrender and awe inspiring grace.  By the time I am ready to drift daintily out of this body, I want to do it with full presence, and an ease like slipping out of a satin gown.  I suppose this merely requires full trust in our Omnipresent Love Monkey Upstairs.

Co-dependence.  It’s not working very well in my moment to moment experience anymore.  I am feeling perpetually disappointed by Mykael.  But it’s not his job to be my continuous source of entertainment, love, listening and everything else that I require in order to be a happy, well adjusted human.  Oh fuck, I’m on the verge of tears again… because lately it has seemed like we haven’t been fitting together at all.  Which just confuses the fuck out of me.  I am spinning right back into the loaded question of the purpose of relationship.  WHY COMMIT???  Is it supposed to be this hard?????  But festering in the unknown of this inquiry is only causing me suffering… So I think I’d better just table the question for a little while and go hang out with my women friends more, commune with nature, serve others.  I’m pretty sure that I want to volunteer at a hospice.  Speaking of death.

I mean, honestly, what is more fascinating, rich and true than death?  People who are dying are teetering right on the edge of the Mystery.  And people who are teetering right on the edge of the Mystery…are REAL.  Also they need extra courage and support.  What is it to die????  I want to know.  What is it to LIVE?  What is it to love fully without condition?  Asking these questions, I suddenly feel my heart come alive.  My solar plexus, too.  I might just burst.

I wish I could be normal, like my friend Shelly.  She is living the quintessential American dream… except she’s actually present and awake to splash and bask in it… She has a career that is great service to many and she loves it, she is joyously married, pregnant with her first child (she was MADE to be a mother!!!), she and her man own their house in the mellow town of Bend, Oregon.  And get THIS~ both HER parents, and her hubby’s parents just moved to Bend to be close to their newest incarnation of family.  They basically magnetized their extended families (who they have great relationships with) right into their own back yard!  All of this blows my mind.  Like here I am down in Oakland, flailing around like a confused though wildly blessed mess, and meanwhile, she’s up in Oregon having the easiest, most loving and joyful time of life.  I wonder if a life like that would bore an artistic, poetic, cosmic explorer like me… I guess we all have our dharma and our karma and our Destinies…

I suppose if I could visualize the life I dream of living, I could certainly live it… but I’m so moody and whimsical that my fancies shift with the winds.  Sheesh, I just got up to pee and you know how I have a habit of dancing behind the closed bathroom door?  Well, today, I crumbled into a fountain of tears instead.  I guess it’s the same thing, really… a raw and unbridled expression of the heart.

And as much as all my outer world, ego visions change like weather, my thirst for God remains the same and that’s all that really matters to me anyway.  I just had some deep seated notion that some day, life would get easy.  I guess the day it gets easy is the day I choose peace.  The day that I am present and wide awake in wonder, reverence and gratitude.  Could that day be today????

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Can I Get An AMEN?!?!?

And finally, Sunday hath cometh! And Athena doth goeth unto church! Ha! I’m gonna start speaking biblically on the Sabbath from now on. Just kidding, that would take way too much effort to sustain, but it’d sure be a holy kick in the pants, and at the end of the day, what matters most is not how much money you make, or how many TVs you have…but how many times you’ve been kicked in the holy pants. True or true? (When I say “true or true”, I am poking fun at the Millionaire Mind Intensive… kicking my own holy pants, as I am often compelled to do, because life without pants kicking is NOT a life worth living, if you ask me. I can’t help but glean amusement from motivational speakers who are both truly inspiring and positively evocative, but also way too amped up, as though they are on some rare and delectable strain of methamphetamines. Everywhere I go, I study leaders, take secret notes for when it’s my turn to step up and shepherd us Home. I like the “true or true” tactic… it’s a powerful way to ensure that the crowd climbs aboard and sets sail on your ship. Just be sure to exercise discernment, and make sure it’s a destination worth seducing the herd to, okay?)

Church… The word church has almost as much yucky, archaic resonance around it as the word “God” does… I feel like such an underdog for loving church. As though the ONLY people who are allowed to love church are the prudish, rigid, nervous types who judge and condemn in the name of God. Obviously that’s NOT true, since NOBODY at The East Bay Church of Religious Science is like that. The vibe there is that of celebratory affirmation that the power and the presence of the Holy Dice Roller is within each one of us! It’s such a resplendent breath of fresh air to spend a couple of hours steeping in an environment where EVERYONE is aligned with the Highest. And not the narrowing, condemning highest, but the empowering, expansive Highest. I leave that place floating in the heaven that is here and now, utterly a-tingle! I feel so blessed. I dream of living in a world that is like this. Every day. Wait, maybe I already DO…

Well, if I had ANY doubt that all “this” wasn’t but a casual outpouring from my very own mind… Today, it has become official. This strange, auspicious weaving is only of the ONE. You want PROOF? Well, I’ll give it to you! First of all, I have been CHOMPING at the bit for Sunday to come, so I could get my azz to church, since I missed it last week. I was building a snowball of excitement, enthusiasm and hunger inside. And then, when I got to church, there was an unusually high vibration, like a shimmering castle of sacred sand, shaped from my very own anticipation. The minister and the pulpit assistant and the musical director were all giving voice to how BLESSED we were to be sharing this utterly divine space of celebration and worship. Each of them spilled out of their own skin with extraordinary jubilation. Now, you might say “so what?”… but if I were to look through the lens that all that is “outside” is a reflection of my “inside”…I recognize that my experience of in and out fit together like a sexy-chic glove today!

Then, the choir (the HOLY, revelatory, no-holds-barred-inspired choir) sang a song with the lyrics “Spirit wants you to sing your song”. Remember my blog entry from like TWO days ago??? I started it talking about how I seem to have forgotten my soul song… and the idea that each of us is born into our very own, unique song… Then the minister expounded on this idea of reclaiming our song, and choosing to courageously SING OUR SONG! “Coincidence”… yeah. (Be sure to envision a congregation hootin’ and hollerin’ in ecstatic accordance with all the nourishing words splashed upon us)

COINCIDE~ to occupy the same place in space, the same point or period in time, or the same relative position: The centers of concentric circles coincide.

Thank you dictionary dot com! Concentric circles… another topic that often pours through these holy fingertips and onto the page… Hey! It’s a coincidence WITHIN a coincidence!!! Think about the implications of occupying the same place in space… Makes me think of ONEness. Makes me think of transcendence of the space-time continuum. Ya dig? Like beyond this world of division and multiplicity and distance, there is quiet, holy center, from which everything pours.

Another coincidence= I wanted to check in on my beloved blogging sister, Melissa (http://honeybtemple2.blogspot.com/)… One of her most recent posts addresses the plump, juicy topic of jealousy. She specifically addresses jealousy in relation to relationships. Like getting jealous of your partner when they are connecting with another woman (or man)… I really dug her digging into this “unsavory” facet of existence. What came to my mind was another manifestation of jealousy. The kind of jealousy that stems from seeing someone thriving, existing in fullness and glory in an area of life where I feel scarce, undeserving or somehow blocked. This kind of jealousy stings like a motha! So of course, but two hours later, the minister stood before his congregation and addressed this very aspect of jealousy. He openly embraced what he called his “Hater”… the aspect of himself (and myself and your self) that feels scarce and disconnected from Source, and in the face of that judges, condemns and even hates those who are thriving, because they shine an unflattering mirror on a place where we have forgotten the truth of ourselves and the implicit abundance and worthiness therein.

What is the essence of all this? THERE IS ONE MIND, PEOPLE. ONE. We all think from this one mind. Or… it thinks us… some’m like that.

And I’m spent. It’s off to the farmer’s market in search of cookies the size of baby whales! Blessings, blessings, blessings to you. May your mind be luminous and lit by the magnificent, off the hook light of the ONE!

Today I Cried a Sea of Tears in Church

Warm.  Salty.  Any guesses to what I am referring to?  If you guessed tears, you WIN!!! If you guessed anything else, you win, too, because it is SUNDAY, and EVERYBODY wins on Sunday!!!  Especially on a Sunday where the high is gonna be seventy three degrees!  But I digress.  Tears streamed down my face all through this morning’s service.  I decided to give the East Bay Church of Religious Science a try… I have been hearing about it through this person or that person, literally for years… But mostly I chose it today because they had an 8am service.  Actually meditation was from 7:45 to 8:15, and then service went till 9:45.  Wow, you mean I was in there for two hours?!?!?  It sure didn’t feel like it.  That’s the sign of a good church, eh?  Yeah, here are the top three ways to know you have found a stellar church~

#1~ you lose track of time

#2~ you can’t stop crying the whole time

#3~ you are invited to take full responsibility for your experience of life, while simultaneously                    letting go and letting God.

Yesterday I was once again caught in the cesspool of dissatisfaction with Mykael.  Jesus… I know, it seems endless, doesn’t it?  My heart was in despair and I was exhausted and missing E* some more.  Missing a partner who was my playmate.  Focusing on the lack, the seeming desert that sprawls inside me where freedom and play once stood, long, long ago.  Mykael told me that he was gonna shop at whole foods yesterday evening.  I told him I had been planning to do the same.  He asked if WE could go together!!!  I said yes.  Then later, after we’d been doing our separate stuff all day long, he told me that he was not really so into going to the store… But he would because he had to.  I am having such a hard time letting go of the joy and communion I used to feel about shopping when E* and I did it together.  He’d push me in the shopping cart, notice and celebrate the people around us and contribute to the rigorous decision making process of what to buy. (Praise the Lord!)

Hurt and anger.  They always seem to land in me at the same time… Word on the street is that hurt usually precedes anger… but inside me, it all happens so fast.  Suddenly they are both THERE, like inseparable lovers… So speaking from the voice of hurt and anger, I told him to forget it, I’d go to the store ALONE, because I’d rather be by myself than with a guy who doesn’t want to be there.  Which is true.  But I was furious and devastated that he did not gleefully embrace shopping with me.  With E*, shopping was always so ALIVE, engaging, playful, adventurous, co-creative.  So I walked and cried myself to Whole Foods alone as twilight struck, doing everything I could to transcend all the pain inside me and see the beauty in the plethora of lush gardens, the deepening into night sky, the waxing gibbous moon, who became more ostentatiously luminous with each exhale into twilight…  Or maybe more accurate, I was doing everything I could to hold on to the pain and resist the seduction of moonbeams and flowers and cool, spring air, replenishing my life with every single breath.

“The only mess I keep in my life is the mess I’m not willing to let go of.”  This is one of the many blazing arrows that Reverend Elouise shot at me this morning.  I cried even harder when I heard this.  Blame.  Victim.  Horrible traps to get stuck in.  And all it would take is to simply let go… but… My ego fights endlessly to convince me that it’s harder than this… in order to keep me at its glutinous mercy.  I invited Mykael to come to church and the farmer’s market with me this morning.  It was an early morning for him, so I expected him to decline… which then gave this grievance of mine more righteous evidence that he is not the right partner.  I left the house feeling so alone and so justified in my disappointment and sadness.  And I sat all the way through meditation, brooding, festering, refusing God’s peace and then realizing this and almost imperceptibly flogging myself for this.  God.  I just want to know God.  It breaks my heart, the arduous journey… when the only one in my way is ME.

I was disappointed to see that the church was in such a run down building, right on Telegraph Avenue.  I dig a place of worship that is aesthetically pleasing.  Remember, I break for ambiance.  Gimme a little stained glass.  Gimme fresh, stunning bouquets of flowers and artfully carved, though false, idols.  This sanctuary was the poster child of unpretentious.  But I soon realized that the potency of the spirit easily made up for the lack of aesthetic beauty.  The choir sang a song about how Something woke me up this morning… And I could feel many of the choir and congregation truly believing and celebrating this.  Resonance.  I felt such a sweet, comforting resonance as I sat, soaking up everything that I had begged God to show me as I bitterly drove to church.  Lemme tell you~ GOD DELIVERED.  This East Bay Church of Religious Science is not a fluffy service.  It is meat and bones and gristle of the Soul!

The fiery reverend kicked it off with the cracking dynamite declaration that if we only deal with what feels good, our consciousness don’t expand!!!  I thought, well phew, I am in the PERFECT place then, because I am sure not feeling good.  From there, Reverend Elouise kept firing the messages of personal responsibility as though she were shooting a Holy machine gun!  And I stood and opened myself to be obliterated by the holy onslaught of bullets.  I needed it, I asked for it, I received it and I cried a warm, salty sea.  After the music, they asked if there were any new people, and would we please stand up so we could be seen and welcomed.  Face wet with tears, I stood, feeling the stinging tickle of self consciousness.  All eyes burned through me.  I looked around to see if I was the ONLY one standing.  There were two others in the back.(and to my surprise the sanctuary was quite full for such an early service!)  I let my eyes touch the eyes of those who beheld me.  Listen up, because THIS IS THE SACREDEST PART~ A good few pairs of eyes were hurling welcoming, generous light right at me.  Man, I swear!  I felt so blessed and touched to receive their loving gazes!  I saw God.

If you come away with anything after reading this, I hope you come away remembering the profound potency of a simple loving, accepting, welcoming gaze.  You don’t need to be Religious or Spiritual to offer or receive this utterly human, sheerly Divine Gift.  Ya dig?

Some other off the hook reminders from the service that I take to heart are:

~What you put your attention on increases

~Attention is what nurtures seeds of intention

~I’m always at choice~ I can open my heart, or keep it shut. (eeeek… talk about responsibility)

~Relationships are for my BENEFIT, and the good ones should annoy the hell out of me… Meaning that when someone pushes my buttons it is so I can GROW, forgive and heal.

~NOTHING HAPPENS IN MY LIFE THAT IS NOT GOOD FOR ME

I walked out humbled and nourished.

That last sentence deserves to be its own paragraph… Let go.  That is the invitation.  They reminded me that the past is over and done with and holding on to it is only good for suffering and remaining closed to the blessings of THIS HOLY MOMEMT.  How do I let go of all my memories of E*, and all that I grieve no longer having in my daily experience of being alive?  Bless it all.  Bless my feelings of loss.  Bless the grace that it was to share all of that.  Bless my fixations and resistance to holding on… Bless E*.  Bless Mykael.  Bless me.  Bless you.  Bless this day!  I’m dumping all these bricks out of my hot air balloon and look out,  because I’m taking holy flight!!!