Mystery Versus Rationality

I was feeling stricken with a bad case of the “same-ole, same-olds”…Tired of blogging in bed.  So I sojourned to Pizzaiolo this morning, mistakenly thinking that it would provide a transfusion of inspiration into my guts and my choice of words.   Not even close.  I also ordered a decaf mocha, the likes of which has been WAY off my radar for the past month plus.  Even with decaf everything inside me is jittering like a wind chime in a hurricane.  But there is a delicious feeling at the bottom of my womb.  It’s warm and dangerously alive.  (I am going to start bleeding at any moment.)  I had to put on my headphones and listen to Jai Uttal because there is a little posse of rugrats here who are boiling over.  You know, jumping up and down, growling, stomping and acting like the freaks that we ALL ARE inside, but pretend we’re not because we think looking good will afford us the love and acceptance we incessantly thirst for.

What should I write about?  I need a hug.  I keep having this inclination to just ask “strangers” (God, that is such a silly term to describe someone that you don’t know.  “Stranger”.  What’s a better word, oh hallowed namer of things?  “Uncharted Holy Waters of Humanity”, “Undiscovered Fleshy Wonder”…) for hugs.  I mean REALLY, think about it.  Nobody should EVER starve for a hug, considering how many damn people there are on the planet.  Pizzaiolo is full of ‘em right now… and yet I have this concept that it is only acceptable to fling my arms open to one who I know shallow stories about.  This is blasphemous.  I challenge myself to hug at least TWO undiscovered fleshy wonders today.  What about YOU?  Are you in?  If I can do it, you can.  Just start with one… honestly, the revolution starts here.  Let’s create a world culture where no human starves for hugs!  (and not no stinkin’ PC, A-frame bologna, either.)

Me and my over stimulated wind chiming bones were feeling at a loss as far as what to write about.  So I texted RosyMoon (Why did I almost type RosyMonsoon?  I swear I did…) and Mykael.  This is interesting.  RosyMoon told me to write about “mystery vs. rationality”.  Mykael told me to write about what I thought 2012 was about.  Certainly this is God screaming at me from deep inside my very own ear… because I think twenty twelve could certainly be about mystery versus rationality!  Remember when I was all tingles and shrieks about Little Grandmother?  She said that We are moving from the paradigm of the mind, back into the heart… which is essentially mystery versus rationality, isn’t it?

And anyway, isn’t it obvious what twenty twelve is about, given how suddenly hungry for Truth everybody is?  It all started when The Power of Now swept the nation.  ‘Member when the bloody book was EVRYWHERE?  Oh, and of course the movie, “What The Bleep Do We Know”… and then, “The Secret”.  Duh, isn’t it obvious that everyone is looking for the lost and long forgotten Essential Self who is buried beneath all this egoic rubble, distractions of shallow ambitions and grandiose fever dreams of separation.  Everybody (Is that an exaggeration?  Well if it isn’t “everybody” yet, it will be eventually, because we are at the ninety-nine monkey mark and soon we’ll all pop like innocent corn kernels in scalding oil… like it or not.) is having an inner revolution, releasing themselves into the watery, ambiguous quest of Self discovery.  (Yuck.  My mouth tastes like the wreckage of coffee aftermath.)

Mystery versus rationality.  I am having a very intimate dance with that topic these days, come to think of it.  I have clearly gotten the call to go to Kauai.  Trust me.  I made the choice very organically, much like a pregnancy.  I had the idea, which blew into my consciousness like a sacred seed on a current of God’s very breath.  I welcomed it… and just let it nestle into the potent soils of my Self.  I loved it, listened to it and let it’s unrooted promise seduce me in quiet moments.  And the next thing I knew, it had exploded into a cool canopy of certainty and promise.  Its roots were drinking from my very own dark inner reaches.  And as of yesterday morning, I am the proud owner of a one way ticket to tropical paradise!

My mind climbs precarious walls, groping for a lucid picture of who and what I will be when I land with a soft, sumptuous thump on the Garden Island.  Will I be able to make money?  Will I write a book?  (This question gnaws at me incessantly.  I know am destined to write a book, but the task is daunting.  Given how much I write, I could have a book a mile long by now… but it comes down to narrowing my focus, choosing a topic and diving in!  Any ideas?  What book by Athena Grace LMNOP would quench your soul-thirst?  What book would leave you esoterically fat and sassy and better off than I found you???)  My mind climbs its walls in a laughably fruitless search for solid ground to stand on.  I try to tell this twist of a mind that if it wants solid ground, it certainly won’t find it on the walls.  But that’s minds for ya.  They think they are all cutting edge and rationally superior… but really, they are stuffed with dust and stiff feathers.  My mind is itching to know if I am “moving” to Kauai… or just going for an extended stay.  Will I throw down roots, or just gracefully skim along the glimmering, crystalline surface of this verdant, oceanic heaven?

I can’t answer these desperate questions posed by a mind threatened by the unknown.  I find that when I concentrate on the meditation that it is to *Lovingly* put one foot in front of the other, treading a path paved with gratitude, authenticity and kindness, (and of course, forgiving with every breath) that is when I feel the most sane and whole.  It is only fear’s panty-twisted importuning that would have me flail and clambor to micromanage my entire existence, start to finish and bolt it down before tragedy and chance can strike tsunami style.  It’s the dance metaphor all the way, baby!  I take a slinky, smiling step… and then the Mystery pulls me coyly close and twirls me till I’m almost dizzy and giddy, my dress maybe flying up and flashing a quick glimpse of my high fashion panties to the world at large.  And then I swivel my hips and the Mystery mirrors me.  We leap in unison.  I toss my head back and laugh.  Sometimes this dance is clumsy, and sometimes it is seamless as a master in action.  But always, it is Alive.  Always it is Blessed.  Always it is Breath.

Rationality versus Mystery.  Every day I try to pry myself free from the tight, vicious fist of needing to know.  I am.  I am.  I AM.  And then she breathed.  And then her breath was pressed effortlessly, expelled from the softly heaving chest who never ceases to Wonder.  Amen.

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For the LOVE of Words

When push comes to shove and shove comes to knuckle sandwich and knuckle sandwich comes to a gruesome strangling affair by a seven mile long snake with prism skin… Well… I don’t know what then. But I know that now I am here on the page to sooth myself. I have not slept well in weeks. I think this happens when my spirit is integrating a lot of new information and my poor, dense physical body, bound by time and space struggles to keep up. My spirit is a hardball playing, dragon slaying, fire spraying, business meaning machine. What’s a girl to do? Except step unabashedly onto the page and make strangely textured love to her own insides, letting her word-dripping imagination take her for a ride. So today I dedicate this blog to words that quench me, pleasure me, sooth and amuse me. That said I am suddenly burning to tell you that I sampled a new church last Sunday. I have no interest in recounting the experience, except for one crucial sliver. This was the day following Mykael’s antithesis of a lucrative art show, so we were both feeling ground down by fear in spite of ourselves. We had some kind of abrasive, unsavory exchange in the car before entering the disheveled though spirit saturated sanctuary. A handsome black man with the most soulfully luminous eyes I’ve ever seen in my entire life greeted me. He asked me how I was doing. I said something like not so good, which was all it took to open the flood gates and then in less than the space between sacred syllables, I came hopelessly undone. His eyes bled compassion all over me and he took me in his arms. He spoke in a soft loving voice and told me to let it out. I heaved in waves of surprise attack sobs. He just kept holding me and speaking soft words of reassurance into my ear. I am astounded by the beauty and generosity of his anonymous, unconditional heart. I wish I could arrange a string of words that could come somewhere near the miraculousness of the light that poured from him. I’m gonna try, because you only live once, and what else would I be doing with this razor sharp, explicit holy moment of my existence? Really… The recipe for this stranger’s eyes… in a sky-sized bowl, mix the following ingredients thoroughly~ the soft purrs of an ecstatic cat, the song from a large, deep, resonant wind chime stirred by a warm, lazy tropical breeze, the soul-shivering first kiss shared with one who enchants the pants off you, the feeling of being entirely, rapturously held in the armless embrace of warm, lucid blue tropical water, a stirring piano sonata played in complete darkness and the thick, buttery scent of croissants baking at sunrise. Does that give you some idea of the soulful beauty he poured on tearful me? In a recent-ish blog, I explored the true meaning of Grace. With the help of my readers, we came up with some bitchin’ definitions… but really, it was Grace that splashed from his eyes. It was Grace’s timeless, unconditional generosity that held me while I cried on his shoulder. It was Grace whose tears watered this thirsty desert of human suffering. Grace. She is the space between expectation-stained dreams. Grace. She is the breath that streams through me and you on nights wrapped in yearning and days splayed wide with gaiety and sweetness. Life is like surfing, isn’t it? All these waves of energy… and we must ride them. Skillfully or not, it’s up to each of us. I had a yogurt drink this morning. I blended organic low fat plain yogurt with fresh strawberries, stevia and a generous sprinkle of maca. Why am I telling you this? Because I want to. Because I LOVE sweet, creamy drinks. I love feeling them fill my mouth. I guess it takes me back to being breast fed. It is such primal, soothing pleasure. Moments spent sipping sweet creaminess are some of the most peaceful, profound and complete moments I have ever met. I imagine that when I finally remember God again once and for all, it will be like imbibing in the SWEETEST, CREAMIEST drink in all of creation multiplied infinity times by its own profound deliciousness. Fuck that’s gonna be so awesome! I can’t wait. But I’ll have to… because I haven’t yet been successful in releasing from my fear-stricken, ego-tense rollercoaster riding, ceaseless streaming spew of thoughts. I will keep knocking… and like Rumi says, when I finally open the door, I will realize I have been knocking from the inside this whole ridiculous timeless time. THE JOKE IS ON ME! Shrug. I guess all I can do is LOVE and forgive, love and forgive, love and forgive love and forgive. And BREATHE. Amen.

Time Keeps A-Sweepin’

Realizing it’s now July.  Noticing I get so excited about the passage of time, but why?  It’s like I’m sprinting down the echoing breezeway of Life, my little worn out moccasins making explosive shouts as they slap and slap and slap the concrete beneath me.  Where am I running to with such urgency?  Back to God, I suppose, but in that case, the joke is definitely on me… because… running to the “end” will not get me any closer to the All Pervading Yard Duty.  Being still might.  Letting my intense yearning split me down the middle might… But certainly not fast forwarding in a single bolt of lightening strife to the illusory ego-fever-dreamish end of Life.

I wrote that first paragraph fresh out of bed.  But that’s all that revealed its self, so I cut myself some slack and took a chill pill instead of squeezing out the entire blog by six am.  Fed, watered and clean as a squeaking, queenly Disney heroine on ice, I am now nestled just south of peaceful at Pizzaiolo.  Still trying to carve out my safe nook in the chaos.  Today’s Course in Miracles lesson made me shake and combust in my sleek space boots.  It was about becoming consumed, devoured, swallowed by God’s name, and therefore my name, your name, OUR sacred name.  Letting my thirst for the One drive me over the edge of illusion’s steep ravine into the oceanic, All Pervading Void.  I think that’s a splendid idea!  I accept!  And now I sit in witness of this ceaseless swish of activity and I burn to see only All Pervading Holy Me… in every single face.  And in the faceless space between heavenly bodies.  This mission requires frequent breathing.

The energy feels so agitating.

Ahhhh, blessed be.  A luminous man from Mykael’s men’s circle just came in and sat across from me!  I offered him a poem.  He accepted.  I asked him to spill the contents of his heart and mind out onto the table between us and he generously poured out a story that went like this~ tomorrow he is flinging himself bold and brave into the unknown folds of Life.  He’s subletting his home for the summer and journeying to Eselen to do work trade.  He feels the blissful sting of change, the inevitable fear-stained tickle of letting go into the unknown.  As he talked, I began to see images of verdant, beautifully tended gardens at dawn.  A bead of dew sliding helplessly graceful down a virile green leaf.  I’ll tell ya WHAT~ writing poetry on the fly is the ultimate exercise in trusting my mind, my imagination.  It always shows me things.  My only job is to tune in, listen, look inside and say YES.  I find it sorta unbelievable.  Entirely miraculous. Risky.  So alive.

As I smacked out the poem, my own heart unfolded, petal by meticulous petal into full bloom.  By the time I finished, I was ecstatic.  This is alchemy at its finest!  Remember, I was choking on the chaos, struggling to find my place.  Then in the next instant, I was blessed by the holy opportunity to let the All Pervading Poet bestow a sacred blessing through me.  I want to leap into the sky and give God a violent high five!  Win for the team!!!  Hmmm… I don’t really know what else to say after that.  I guess I’ll just toss out RosyMoon’s poem request about aging and mortality and call it a day.

She gazed at what legend had it

was her own face,

curious, blinking and flat

upon the reflective glass

she came to know as

“herself”.

Myopic, scrutinous she drank

modest sips of an image breathing

as it shot,

slow and soft

through Time’s winding mind.

Judging eyes

scoured the deepening story lines

upon her tale of skin,

vacillating in a ceaseless pulse

of approval

and disdain passed down

from mothers upon mothers

upon sisters and brothers

in this epic dream

of embodied God long forgotten

in the folds of endless division.

Distracted by a fresh

though not so fragrant spray

of thoughts,

she reached for a the hairbrush

to her left and swept

it through a tangled mane.

It sang crunching songs

as it tamed her external wilderness.

Blinking, she slicked

a colored stain across lips familiar

as her own name.

Grasping for an unchanging taste

of her beauty she stood

in wait.

Another moment, another day

half asleep, oblivious to

the truth hidden within

the ambiguous, eternal something lurking

just beyond her hungry

slow

decaying reflection.

God, thank you for another beautiful day to remember you, to serve you, to spin time and space into Love on the loom of Forgiveness.  Amen.

An Excerpt From My Novel

Yes, I wrote the first draft of a novel entitled “What Really Happened At Neverland Ranch”.   I’ve been wrastling with it for six months now… trying to figure out how Creator’s  name to make it smooth and publication worthy… Tonight, as I was editing, I had the inspiration to share a morsel of it with you… just so that it can remain alive beyond my own desperate closet teeming with hope and fear.  I would appreciate any words and cheers of encouragement.  It yearns to be born and cherished as a whimsical parable of a world alive in the lost folds of wild dreams.  Without further ado, ladies and gents, I give you a few linguistic swallows of this zany tale~

“Was the King of Pop a bodhisattva?  That’s debatable.  But if he wasn’t, he sure could have played one on TV.  Especially now, as he danced in the boundless rosy glow.  As he danced, his body became a quivering vessel of luminous rocket fuel.  His heart became a chalice, spilling with intoxicated delight.  His center became a projector, from which vibrating rainbows sprung, musical notes dribbled and butterflies broke free from invisibility and sleep.  This was raw wilderness, only he was not afraid of lions, tigers or three headed bloody fanged giraffes.  Flowers burst into bloom beneath his feet as he churned space into buttery silk.

If it hadn’t have ended, I would have KNOWN without a doubt that this was the lost Eternity.  When the hallowed King of Pop had danced his heart into a completely unbridled state of freedom and bliss, his perfected state invoked an even more startling and wondrous occurrence!  The boundless, pink sky in which the King of Pop danced, burst into a fractaling expanse of ecstatically whirling dervishes!  Their synchronized turning sucked Michael Jackson in like a mighty tide, or the center of a cyclone.  He was pulled into their fluid, oceanic motion and began to involuntarily turn with the best of them.  His dance went from elaborate to simple, but though the outer expression changed, the revelatory essence remained the same.  His wide heart oozed and mingled with the fractaling ocean of ancient Sufis in ecstatic motion.

It was obvious that the King of Pop had abandoned himself and had Become.  He was Becoming and Becoming and Becoming, without beginning or end.  The operatic laughter singing from deep within him was that of a man who has clearly lost and found himself in Everything.  Until, as man tends to do, he fell from unity and back into the ego’s dream of separation in the space of a breath.  His consciousness folded gluttonously back in on its self.  He looked around and realized incredulously that he was suspended in space, dancing with a spiraling infinitude of Sufi masters.  What?!?!

In a state of shock, he stopped dancing and his whirling friends parted like the Red Sea once did.  Michael Jackson held his breath and he realized that it was because Creation, Its Self was holding its breath!!!

He sensed Something was coming.  The tickle in his bones told him so.  From the cleared path in the Sufi Sea, poured forth a man.  An elaborately adorned man with eyes that spit poetic fire and a laugh that spread thru space like warm water, inadvertently melting everything that it touched.  Michael Jackson would have had no idea who this timeless man was, if he had not have been wearing a golden name badge that read “Hafiz”.  The name rung some faint bell in the King of Pop’s mind… but he did not realize that he was now in the company of a hallowed Sufi mystic.

This enchanting man, clad in flowing golden robes spoke and his words scuttled inside Michael Jackson like vast schools of teensy, shimmering silver fish.

“Michael!  You have made it to us!  We have savored beautiful dreams of your arrival for centuries… Now you are here!  We welcome you with resplendent blessings of the Friend.”

Michael Jackson was not feeling like the artist formerly known as Michael Jackson, but more like a zealous fountain of throbbing luminosity.  (Yes, reminiscent of one of his very own champagne fountains)  He searched his mind for a reply to this great being’s warm greeting, but he seemed to have misplaced his mind.  Fortunately, he found his smile and offered it humbly.

His smile seemed to be a sufficient offering to this glowing man who stood before the King of Pop.  Though it is entirely possible that anything would have been sufficient for this man who embodied a holiness transcendent and untainted by church, religion or the bondage of concept.

“My friends and I have been turning in circles for hundreds of years.  Maybe even thousands… after a few twirls, we tend to lose track of time,” Hafiz poured more of his golden honey laugher out into the endlessly spiraling corridor of spinning men.  It bounced and flailed, as though he had tossed frivolous fistfuls of small, rubber, sonic bouncy balls about the heavenly hall.

“We offer our dance as a continuous stream of prayer, you see,” Hafiz continued, “and we have prayed to meet you, the King of Pop… we yearn with all that we are to have a dance lesson from You, Divine One!”

Michael Jackson blinked.  Suddenly he felt shy.

“So what do you say, Friend?  Will you show us some hot moves?  It’s not that we’re bored of circles… but it is the twenty first century… and even Eternity enjoys a change of pace every now and again…”

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!

Yearning For the Earth

You know what I yearn for right now?  I yearn for the words that you see on this page have been funneled straight from Heaven.  I yearn for you to devour them as though they were your favorite food and they were so mouthwatering that you LICK the page clean.  And even when it’s clean, you lick it some more in a lofty hope that your mind’s tongue might stumble upon something that you missed the first time around.

Of course that’s a tall order… especially since I want to say frivolous things… like I am thoroughly enjoying the aftertaste of black tea in my mouth.  It’s so sweet, it must be angel’s breath.  Much better than janky old coffee breath.  It reminds me of this baby strawberry shortcake doll I used to have when I was a kid.  When you squeezed her around the middle, she would expel strawberry scented air from her permanently parted baby doll lips.  I couldn’t get enough of it.  Baby Strawberry shortcake withstood a lot of squeezing.

Do I want to say frivolous things?  No.  Today I have put too much pressure on myself to be impactful.  I was reading a blog by “Soul Dipper” ( souldipper.wordpress.com/)  I really admire her intentionality.  She uses her blog to channel information bestowed upon her cosmically connected mind by her spirit guides to those who are receptive to her timely and potent spiritual messages.  After reading a post or two of hers, I [naturally] started to compare myself to her.  I felt inadequate, because I merely say yes to the unruly, child-like meanderings of my wild mind, while SHE says hella spiritual things that fall into her mind from wiser and more omniscient planes of existence.  Listen, I know that comparing myself to others is only useful if it inspires me to be more fully myself, to more fully embody my destiny-stained role in the glorious unfolding of Life and Love.  I refuse to get stuck in the eddy of self denigration.

AND… I want to cultivate a deeper, more conscious relationship with my nonphysical guides.  I feel like I can almost hear them cheering and beating their wings against the eager vastness inside me.  It is possible they ache to be heard and received in fullness just as much as I do… What would they have me say right now?

I dunno, but I want to tell you how much I miss being on the farm.  Coming back to this urban web of chaos was comparable to going in for an extended visit to the dentist… (Truth be told, I actually LIKE going to the dentist, mostly… I mean it’s awesome to have someone taking such great care of me, supporting me in keeping my teeth forever.  And if pain is involved, it is an opportunity to meditate on the sensation.  I just used that as a metaphor because there is a general collective consensus that going to the dentist blows) But the essence of it is that my experience of the bay area is that of a large pool of extraneous psychic clutter.  I crave nature.  I crave simplicity.  I took unfathomable delight in just feeling the soft, country breeze, intermingled with ephemerally forceful heat from the sun. My skin is still tasting this delicious cocktail.  I didn’t used to be able to appreciate such simple gifts from god.  I thought revelation would certainly be more of an earth shattering, bone rattling, mind scattering main event (and I still reserve the right to experience it that way, “someday”).  But the more that I heal and remember how to savor being present, I realize that tasting grace can be so ordinary and simple that it can easily be missed if I’m always holding out for the second coming of the Big Bang.

My minds eye is ecstatically haunted by the image of vibrant green walnut leaves against a blazing blue sky.  The contrast of the colors not only lured me into the heart of that perfectly rapturous moment, but it also carried me away to a place of inexplicable soul that somehow transcends one single moment.  Ahhh, the vibrancy of color.  Flowers carry me there… on a daily basis.  Drinking the fluorescent vibration of flowers, I am at once swallowed by the seductive, hungry mouth of the Mystery and spit out in the silent core of Creation.  I rode my bike (whose name is Black Beauty, btw) past some outrageous rose-filled gardens on my way to Pizzaiolo this morning. Oooh-la-la!  And I’m embarrassed to admit this, but geraniums really whistle my kettle too.  I was raised to believe that geraniums were gaudy plants that only little old ladies dared entertain.  If I were to offer a simple equation expressing my conditioned response to this hearty, vibrant, wily creature, it would be~ CHEEP+TACKY+SMELLY= GERANIUM.  But who loses in the face of this narrow, binding, habitual dismissal of a perfectly marvelous face of God?  Athena.  But no longer!  I am going to plant some of these neon beauties and display them proudly in my front yard!

I remember doing tree pose during our yoga sessions in the hallowed walnut orchard, and feeling the decadent texture of the earth under my eager bare feet.  It was firm, yet squishy.  So moist and awake, like the body of my own lover.  It met my feet with an unmistakable tenderness and overt fertility.

On Sunday afternoon, when it came time for our yoga practice, I was zonkered.  I had to dig deep to summon the energy and will to move at all.  I guess we all must have felt that way… because beautiful, divine Kimber felt us and responded accordingly.  She guided us through a very gentle, nourishing, restorative practice, woven with many mini savasanas.  Then, during the final savasana, I had this miraculous experience of transcending the time-space continuum.  Did I fall asleep?  Sort of… but… when I came back from this formless place of peace and rest, I had this feeling that I could have been gone for eons, for eternity, for an entire incarnation of our beloved universe.  When I opened my eyes, I realized I had so many assumptions about the world that my eyes shone upon… and that none of those assumptions were necessarily accurate.  I suppose I traveled to the Great Beyond.  As it turns out, the other yogis shared this transcendent experience… at least on SOME level, because after we offered our closing OM, we all just remained still, stupefied, lulled by a great silence.  Normally we mostly can not get up fast enough, because after yoga comes FOOOOOD!!!!  Artful and lovingly prepared, farm fresh vegetarian meals.  But this time, literally NOBODY moved.  We all just sat on our mats, under a secret blanket of aqueous, exquisite peace.

It would be so easy to dismiss this experience through logical, masculine, literal means.  “Oh, we were all just tired from a day out in the raw elements.”  Yeah, what EVER.  My hypothesis is that we all embarked on a collective inner journey and came out on the other side, in a whole new dimension of existence.  Kimber served as our guide, our flight attendant, if you will, and she was a mere willing vessel of the Divine Mother, manifest as Missus Earth, Herself.  I know this much~ I am not the same woman as I was before this Great Sleep… and this is a mystic blessing, yet to be integrated and revealed.  Stay tuned.

Life as a Holy Pilgrimage

Man, I really oughtn’t be drinking a latte right now.  I was already so hyper this morning.  But I couldn’t resist.  Kurt (a follower of this blog), I fell deeper in love with you when you made the effort to clink metaphorical glasses to my stance that cappuccinos are indeed spiritual!  Cappuccinos are one of the most revelatory facets of my existence.  Except right now.  Right now it feels like the devil’s wicked poison, making me manically ecstatic.  My heart is probably beating faster than a hummingbird’s!  And on top of this, it’s a BEAUTIFUL, warm, lucid spring morning.  Well, I’ll do my best to remain poised and heavenly.

I missed writing to You yesterday.  I missed it so much that I had to play hooky from church just to be here with you now.  My day is pretty full, so it was either church or write.  Duh, writing IS my church, when push comes to shove.  And yesterday was my church too.  Doesn’t that sound ridiculous?  The Church of Revelatory Yesterday!  I’m gonna start it!  How deliciously ironical that would be, since the essence of most spiritual teachings are about the “here and now”.  But we are all yesterday junkies… so I bet it would have a relieving appeal.  I will stand up and preach about the perpetual, noble struggle to cling to yesterday in the face of a present moment that keeps trying to distract us and seduce us into the sacrilege of immediacy!  This is brilliant.

I was desperate to write today because my mind is simply overflowing with resplendence.  You know… inspired thoughts.  I want to slosh them gratuitously about the page… and I dare you not to open.  I dare you not to get turned on, inspired, enlivened.  (l LOVE slurping my warm beverages from a spoon!)  So yesterday, Mykael and I hiked from Tennessee Valley to Muir Beach.  For those of you who are not bay area natives, my condolences.  Just kidding.  But it’s a pretty hefty hike.  At least four miles each way.  But tons of steep ups and downs.  Like a metaphoric portrayal of a challenging period of life.  Parts of it wind right along cliffs that drop off to the churning, sullen turquoiser than thou body we know as the Pacific Ocean.  The first half of the hike, from Tennessee Valley to Muir, my mind was agitated.  Mykael was being moody, which made it harder for me to just rest in my own sphere of peace.  Also, I was expecting the temperature to be a lot warmer.  When we got to the beach, it was cold and windy and late.  Frown.  But the way back was worth it all!  We smoked a little pot, and prayed to for physical endurance and plenty of peace and happiness to sustain us the duration of the walk.  As we stood at the edge of the world, a prayin’ and a tokin’, the horizon began to blush like a modest though oversexed bride.  The sky was the softest blue.  A few sleek, patient clouds hovered here and there~ think bashfully melting marshmallows.  We continued to walk.  Smoking dropped me deeper into my body and I fell in love with the hard packed dirt and the heavy, rooted feeling I experienced each time I stepped.  Meanwhile, back in the sky, it began to look like APL (All Pervading Light) spilled Her psychedelic palate.  What a HOLY MESS.  It was all vibrancy.  The sun was a neon orange hole in the sky.  A hole through which the truth of existence as Light could be sneak previewed.  Slowly it oozed down toward the salivating, dramatic horizon of smooth, green, silhouetted cliffs and deepening ocean.  The pale blue of the sky made the whole scene look so gentle, approachable.  And if your eyes were brave enough to meander through the innocent canopy of blue softness, they would have stumbled right over an almost imperceptible sliver of crescent moon!

Every single moment there on the edge of the world was unique.  Every moment was revelation.  I stood, consumed by awe and PRAYED.  I prayed that I could widen myself, allow all this beauty to flood my being so that I could give it away.  I thought of the Rumi quote, “Let the beauty we love be what we do,” and I finally understood it.  Those moments of witnessing such pure grace… they were so WHOLE and COMPLETE.  There was no striving, nothing to figure out.  It was simply the beauty I love.  That is ALL there was to do.  Except, of course busy myself with trying to cram it all into a divine doggy bag, so that I could bring it home to feed to YOU.  And I don’t mean just with these petty words.  I mean with the generosity of my heart.  I mean EVERY WAY.  The thoughts I invite into my mind.  The purity of my actions… the trail of sweet nectar that floods in the wake of my footsteps upon this earth.

Once upon a summer afternoon, E* and I were hiking at Lake Tahoe and it was stunning!  The water was crystalline turquoise.  The sky vast, deep blue.  The air was clean and hot and held the sweet scent of pine and mountain dirt.  The immense granite boulders stood still in perpetual twinkle.  It was another one of those moments that is devastatingly uncontainable.  So we stood at on the tender precipice where past fucks the future wide open in the space called now… and we folded the vivid image.  Then we folded it again.  Then again, and again and once more… till it was small enough to fit in the palm of a standard sized hand… and we both tucked it away in the luxurious, divine privacy of our own souls, so that we could keep it forever.  I still have mine.  I nibble and sip on it every so often.  I would bet you tons of gold and jewels that if you asked E*, he’d indubitably admit to having his nestled in the breast pocket of his own heart to this day.

I didn’t fold up the sunset last night…  But I widened myself and begged for it to become me, me to become it.  And then I walked on, bathing in the blessing that was too big to wrap my head around.  And as I walked, the sky continued to darken, which only vivified the high hanging, dainty slice of moon.  I told you before that every moon is different.  Well the beams that danced off of this one were reminiscent of honeyed jasmine.  Don’t ask me why.  I could almost smell jasmine as I thirstily lapped up the fuzzy, luminous moon breath.  Slowly, shyly, stars began to come out of hiding.  But the BEST part was happening upon a view of San Francisco.  (I just danced in the bathroom again.  I am a good dancer.  I wish I felt like doing it in public… I bet it would be really healthy and fun.  Any day now…)
”San Francisco twinkled

as a sudden spray of effervescent gold,

cast by a hand so large

and Loving.”

That’s what I wrote last night as I marveled at the glimmering, gold lights that logic would have called “San Francisco”.  But REALLY… Was it SF?  For all I know, it really could have been an accidental spill of magic, flaming dust by some drunken, horny angels… Who am I to say?  All I know is the enchantment it sucked to my surface.

And then more walking.  And walking and walking.  Despite all this beauty, my mind threatened to suffer with thoughts of exhaustion and “when are we going to BE THERE?”  I begged it not to.  In order to quiet it, I reminded myself that I had walked all the way across Spain with a heavy backpack on.  (with E*)  We averaged fifteen miles a day.  One day we walked twenty six miles.  Marathon distance.  It was the pilgrimage route, the Camino De Santiago. It took us a month. Then I realized that I could perceive this walk, too, as a pilgrimage.  In that context, walking toward Revelation, toward awakening to the truth of our saturation in LOVE, suddenly I was willing to walk Forever.  I realized that LIFE is but a holy pilgrimage. Which means that every single person is a fellow pilgrim.

I dunno if you’ve ever walked a pilgrimage before… but there is a special comradery among pilgrims.  There is an unspoken bond we all have, sharing a sacred goal.  We have an understanding of what it takes to walk and walk and walk and walk, in the name of touching something holy within ourselves.  Walking through our own fears, limitations, aches and pains, hopes and dreams.  What a beautiful and accurate way to perceive humanity.  We ARE all pilgrims and the road is long and arduous and beautiful.  But it is sweeter when we share our water and our joy along the way.

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