Slouching Toward Nirvana

Recently, my son and I were asking if the hard and fast rules of meditation are really necessary. You know, erect posture, lotus legs, cushion on the floor. I conceded that I never found the realm of spirit particularly accessible to me under those conditions. It may work for some, and discipline means many things to many people, but I happily and without guilt eschew the mandates of “good” meditation procedure.

I am not saying these practices are wrong, they are just wrong me for me. For now. I reserve the right to change my mind. But I have had a constant conscious contact with a power greater than myself for more than 35 years. Actively. Honestly, without recognizing it, I was attuned to this practice of contact all of my life, and I have explored many paths in search of improving this connection.

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When asked what I do I say I am an elder. Just that. Of course, they want to know more; I offer the laundry list of my skills, but in truth elder is the most appropriate answer I can give. According to Webster’s an elder is, “one having authority by virtue of learning and experience.” In today’s vernacular I might be an “influencer” in the realm of spiritual search. I am an influencer of Source.

Many people tell me that they are looking for their tribe. When I ask them to describe this tribe I hear they want to be among people who share the same ideas and beliefs, who refuse the same philosophies, hold similar opinions, even have the same currency in society as well as finance.

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The Wheel

There is something about August heat that is unlike the rest of summer; it’s not just the humid air or experiencing the continuous sun and heat of the season. We are at the crescendo of summer; we are entering the height of the energy just as it is about to be released. Like an orgasm of intensity and production, we are at the gathering point.

The August full moon, less than a week away, has been called, “the moon when all things ripen”. It has been called by many names, but all refer to the abundance experienced at this time of the year. Fish fill the waters, grain is nearly ready to be cut, and blueberries are at their peak for picking.

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Co-creating With Death

For the last six months I have endured loneliness, scarcity, and loss.

I know, I know, it is up to me to raise my vibration to manifest my best life. I also know that before I entered this body I crafted this lifetime on earth to include challenges that would inform and fuel my love, my beliefs, my belonging.

This six months has been a gift of time to reflect and learn and rise.

While I have used the theory of raising vibration, and still believe in its value, I see now that this is where manifestation may begin but need not be where it stays.

Here’s the thing, after my mother died, that night, I received downloads that indicated clearly and intensely, joyfully, that we don’t manifest anything. It is already there. Yes, of course we have heard this and that raising our vibration brings it into existence. But…

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Double Terminated

She was born under a lesser known zodiac sign.

Okay, she was a Scorpio, and even though most people know of the three aspects of the sign of Scorpio, the aspect she was born under is Rock. Sometimes sedimentary, wherein the layers of her life were revealed in the wreckage she grew from; like coal, dark and combustible. Sometimes metamorphic, borne of intense heat and pressure; like smooth marble, a symbol of luxury and elegance, tough and cold. Often igneous, erupting at the surface hot and hard; like obsidian glass, desirable, sharp, and unstable.

My mother died last week.

Our relationship might classically be called contentious. And for this small writing of 500 words or so, this will do. But of course, it was more complicated than that.

I once grieved the loss of a mother I never had. To mourn is to express sadness. I am not sad. I am done with all that.

When my brother said she had passed I looked for books, articles, poems, anything written by women who lose mothers. There is, as you would imagine a titanic amount available on this topic. But not: I am not sad, I feel relieved, free.

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Mad Money

I was moving from Santa Fe back to NYC. I had no vehicle, (an achievement in Santa Fe, albeit a challenging one) and needed someone to discard a table I had made from a wooden cable wheel and a metal circular top.

I arranged to trade the half cord of pinon I had left for the removal. The guy appeared sane and reliable, and he assured me it was all taken care of. Back in New York I received a letter from my Santa Fe landlord who billed me a chunk of money out of my deposit for the removal of the table. I called him and asked if the wood had been removed and he answered, “What wood?”

I have lived in many places and many apartments of over the decades and only once did I receive my entire deposit back. Once. Once a landlord has your money, they find it near to impossible to let it go. Honestly, it wasn’t his fault the guy was a thief, but half the deposit was a bit much.

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My Madelaine

I call it up instantly. All the scenes are right at hand, nothing left out. Perhaps some added to due to the unreliability of memory. Still, I see and sense it all vividly, clearly.

When Hawaii became a state, my great aunt and uncle took me with them to celebrate. My Aunt Mary married a native Hawaiian (this native title in some dispute as his mother was indigenous, while his father was born via a Portuguese man) and when she first stepped onto the family land in Honolulu she knew she was Hawaiian in her soul.

Uncle Ernie’s house was located on the family’s private acreage along the coast, the beach was near to deserted except for relatives. It was there I learned to swim. Aunt Mary did not swim herself, and most likely would not have been able to save me if anything unfortunate were to happen, but she had bought a flotation device, put me in the ocean, and told me I could swim.

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Invitation to Wonder

I had been experiencing the feeling of being stuck, or at standstill, like the Eight of Swords in the Waite deck. The tide was out, I could not see.

Speaking to my friend Julie (teacher, healer, and all-around goddess) about my frustration, she suggested I work with the Virtue of Wonder.

The Virtues are qualities of excellence that require commitment to be of value. They do not yield to impulses or urges but are steadfast markers by which we navigate. For me, The Virtues refer to spiritual character building. They are doorways to Source.

After my conversation with Julie I sat in silence for ten minutes. Just breathing saying internally, “I wonder” with each inhalation. I heard “Invitation to Wonder”. Just sitting just breathing, it became a thought which I did not follow at the time. I just kept breathing.

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Sudden Death

Recently, I have been reading memoirs written by people as their death approached. I have been watching live streams: people who have written extensively about mindfulness, discuss dying. Discussing no death, no fear.

Closing my iPad, having had enough of death for the day, I see I am on a new path, I am in the middle of an adjustment, an alteration of the course. Now I have clarity on the phrase, “keep death as your ally”. Death is my collaborator in living. One might say partners in a game, where I understand that I will always concede the final point.

Thursday is my birthday. I will be 66.  Playing a game with dice and rolling double sixes thrilled me. Having reached this stage of living, transition is all around me. I don’t mean death per se, but more the sensation of transitioning into a new phase. I have let go of many things, concepts, beliefs, fears, this phase is even cleaner. Letting go has become not second nature but an art.

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All Hearts Are Welcome

I am probably one of the most positive people you will meet. I can embody the lyrics from the Mary Tyler Moore show song–most days.

Today is not one of those days.

I have felt this coming for several days. I have buried it under not giving up five minutes before the miracle, finding the gratitude, breathing breathing breathing, repeating positive messages, reading positive missives…
Then I just stopped all of that. I began to cry, to produce enormous and copious amounts of tears from my eyes. I felt heartbroken. My heart felt like it was being pried open.

The world feels relentless and unenlightened. I cannot find the spiritual arm to hang onto. I can usually be the one counted on for just the right phrase to counter this feeling: people are doing what they need to do in this life-walk for their spiritual growth; we cannot know what another is truly feeling or seeing; there is more to this story than we can apprehend from where we are standing. It makes me cry even more because I know this is all true. So, what the fuck am I crying about?

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