Some of us are stuck in the shallows Where life has a cautious desperate rhythm, punctuated by bursts of pleasure and hurt. There's a loss of connection with the depth of our being. Life has become the soap opera or media that we tune into. The deep is too dangerous to acknowledge, let alone embrace. We cling to the safety of the shallows. We want to feel connection, yet can't let go of controlling and comparing, resisting and resenting. Life is filled with distractions, must-see t.v. and others agreeing this is the way it "should" be. It is the shallow sea of a fearful and protective ego. When you feel caught up like this, take time to pause. Breathe fully and notice what is alive in you. Listen for the vibration from the deep. The untouched part of you that never changes. Finding your Middle Ground is the gateway to a new depth of being and living fully. The current may be strong and the transition may not be easy. It takes courage to be the swimmer you are, to dive in and wake up.
On Sunday I spent some time with Ali Grimshaw’s writing circle and once again, enjoyed being with like minded souls as we explored poetry together. You can find out more on Ali’s blog flashlightbatteries.blog
The inspiration was a poem called “Lighthouse Keeping” by Kay Ryan
This is what I wrote:
Know that we are keepers of the light Holding space and reaching out to those in darkened places. Its not our job to judge, advise, fix or rescue others. Our calling is to keep the light shining within ourselves and bring it to the world, to keep us all afloat.
I wrote this for all of us who have experienced struggling and being in the dark. After all, we all go through the pendulum of life. Never doubt that within you, the light is still there. As long as you live, it is within you. Your job is to keep connecting to it, so you can continue to shine in the world, and keep us all afloat.
“What is the ego-mind’s fear of awakening? It is: Who wants a relationship with Miss Nobody? Who will employ Mr No-Mind? What kind of future is there for one who is desireless?
But I am reminding you that all these are the ego’s taboos, imaginings and attempts to distract you from your ever-perfect nature.
In truth, your awakened life will be magnificent, harmonious, joyous and complete.
Follow your intuitive sense of the divine within. Welcome its presence and vibration. Like this, your insight opens to fully recognise the real as your own Self.
The awakened heart invites and allows the Supreme to shine its light upon this world.”*
Miss Somebody enjoyed reading this this morning! Mooji’s words are so simple and straightforward. He makes the complex, understandable. And makes me smile.
*Mooji (2015-12-03). White Fire: Spiritual insights and teachings of advaita zen master Mooji (Kindle Locations 232-238). Mooji Media Publications. Kindle Edition.
“The practice of cherishing can be taken very deeply if done wordlessly, allowing yourself to feel the love and appreciation that already exists in your heart”.The Dalai Lama
Dear one, Cherie, Cheri
Let us cherish ourselves
And others today
And every day.
Hold your self near and dear
Care deeply for those you love.
Be loving to everyone you meet
Let kindness shine from your heart
And show in your eyes
See it be reflected
in the eyes of others
It is always there.
Love is in our hearts and in the air.
No purchase required.
Breathe it in with lightness and joy
Breathe it out and send it far.
Let it touch all who need it most.
A never ending cycle of love
To replenish and nurture ourselves
And the world.
Words to inspire and open your heart today 🙏
“This is what I have to say to you. Create an open space inside you by choosing to be quiet. Don’t rush to fill that space with conjecture, thought, or inquiry, but let it stay open – a place for the mystery to enter in and take up residence. Don’t seek to name it, tame it, or frame it in an enclosure of ideas. Just be with it, or be it, no other action needed on your part. Let the mystery do or not do, move or be still, shine or stay invisible. Notice if it’s you or not you, or maybe both at once. When the mind chimes in, invite it to rest in the infinite depth and breadth of mystery and soul light. When the time for sitting ends, be grateful for however long you spent in that presence.”
~ Danna Faulds prose posted on her website from January 6, 2021
These words really resonated with me today. I have been sharing Danna Fauld‘s poetry for some time. It is always inspiring and brings me Home. You can find her books on line to purchase, but you may not know that she has a website that she regularly updates with new prose and poetry. It is a delightful resource for creating space inside you and finding your middle ground.
~ Inner certainty Move from being right or wrong Find your Middle Ground ~
We find inner balance when we let go of ideas of right or wrong, and good or bad; when we embrace a deeper sense of knowing and being in the world.
When we witness the mind’s need to analyze and the ego’s urge to judge, we open up the freedom to choose.
This is where true balance resides.
The center of our being has no preferences. It is there to open up to the fullness of loving presence.
Our practice is to keep coming back to it again and again. And to listen.
From finding our middle ground, to living from it.
Last Sunday I had the opportunity of joining a writing circle on Zoom facilitated by Ali Grimshaw. I’m not sure if I see myself as a writer or a poet, but I was very curious to explore whatever came up!
My sincere thanks to Ali and the others for being in community in such a supportive and loving way. We came together as if we already knew one another, listened fully as the words came forth, and literally opened our hearts. It was an inspiring experience and I would recommend this to anyone interested in reflective writing and poetry from the heart. You can also find Ali’s poetry on her WordPress blog FlashLight Batteries. I look forward to jumping in again.
These are the inspiring words from David Whyte that resonated with me:
"We shape our self to fit this world and by the world are shaped again" ~ David Whyte, taken from Working Together I wrote: We are born into a world already formed by people with their roles, ideas, and ways of being. We rely on them to keep us safe. We adopt the views on life through the eyes of others to fit this world, and be safe. Then comes a time when it fits no more. From comfort to irritation, like a hair shirt that itches and rubs the neck raw. Was it just in a blink of an eye? We have grown, but have yet to learn life's real lesson. The world is always at work, shaping us, giving us hair shirts, and messages that go unnoticed until we wake up. Then we realize we have to take off the clothes of conformity and discover our truth. In the shedding we allow ourselves to be shaped anew. ~ Val Boyko
I came across this post from 2017 and it brought a big smile today. Enjoy!
I love The Guardians of Being – a collaboration between Eckhart Tolle and comic strip artist Patrick McDonnell. In Guardians of Being reminds us of not only the oneness of all life but also the wonder and joy to be found in the present moment.
McDonnell has created a new comic strip based on The Power of Now!
Bringing light and lightness.
Try not to smile…
You can read an interview with Patrick McDonnell at the Huffington post by clicking here.
This post is especially for Paul over at Learning From Dogs. and very dog and cat owner 🐾
“We tend to lose interest in more superficial, less authentic ways of being together. We invest less energy in our self-limiting stories, as well as the self limiting stories of others. Personal dramas, gossip, and projections tend to fall away, and we spend less time ruminating about the past, or anticipating the imagined future. We are more at ease with silence and don’t feel compelled to fill the gaps. We realize that we don’t need to leave our self in order to meet someone else. In fact, we come to see that until we are at home in our self, we can’t truly connect with others.
When there is nothing to prove or disprove about our self, we are more in the present moment, enjoying what is here now. There is creative space for sharing and discovery. Out ordinary life continues, but our relationship to our life becomes increasingly more spacious and open.”John J Prendergast. Taken from The Deep Heart Our Portal to Presence
These words come from John J Prendergast’s transformational book The Deep Heart, and refer to the awakening process.
What struck me as I read this, was how many people may also be having a similar experience during the pandemic. I know that I have spent so much more time in self isolation and being in nature. Despite the turmoil and chaos of the external world, there has been a settling and expansion of my inner world.
When we slow down, pause and take time to simply be in silence, we may discover deeper or hidden aspects of ourselves.
Some of us may think there is something wrong. After all, we are not the way we were before. But the reality is, that something unfamiliar is taking place that wants our attention.
It’s time to let go of the familiar and open to what is arising.
This is a re-post from December 2016. No matter the dance that comes along, join in and be a part of the future as it unfolds.
The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.
– Alan Watts
I love this message … especially as we move into a new era that is sure to bring about many changes here in the US.
What we resist only persists… and adds to our own inner struggle.
Stop resisting, and start to accept that we are in for … Something that is yet to unfold.
When the seeds of change open, there must be growth.
So let’s embrace it, join in it and dance with it.
Each of us is a part of a future that has not been written.
Something much bigger than ourselves is at work here… and we are a part of it, whether we like it or not.
Don’t be a wallflower.
Join the dance.
This is a re-blog of a post that was powerful for me to work through. As we continue through these difficult times, more and more stress and distress will impact us all. May we all find our middle ground in the waves of life.
On Tuesday I had a stressful day. A dip in the highs and lows of life day. It wasn’t surprising. I had some concerning news that took the wind out of my sails, and I developed a pressure cooker of a sinus headache. I was in a trough. I know how my mind and body are connected. My body tells me quite clearly when I have to pay attention to what is happening around me and what I am feeling.
The message is clear – take care of my well being. Pause. Connect to my Self.
In hindsight it is easy to catch, but at the time it may take a bit longer to realize that we are under stress. In this particular occasion it became very clear as I went through emails and started to read updates from fellow bloggers. As I painfully squinted at the screen. I was no longer present, but my inner judge was! “What do they want? … Why bother me with this?… How stupid! How superficial!… They are so self centered!… Don’t they get it?… This is trivial! Who has time for frivolity? Pl-ease get to the point.”
My thinking revealed that Val was not present or in balance. My defensive inner teenager had been unleashed.
Everyone was dumb. They didn’t get it. They didn’t see how much pain I was in. They took advantage of me. They tried to control me. All the unmet needs from the past were right there demanding attention.
Our inner teenager is challenging and requires some kindness and understanding. Its in pain – emotionally and often physically. It has so many unmet needs and is trying to figure out how to get them met as they move from childhood into independence. It is our ego at the height of all of its immature defensive glory.
One part of me was determined to be miserable and show the world (?) that I had every right to be. Thankfully the part of me who has learned to be a compassionate observer knew that it was time to unplug. NOW!
You are stressed. Take care of yourself and find your middle ground. Be gentle and kind. Let things be as they are. Let this mood/energy pass and find its way to nurturing balance once more.
It was easier after I had taken half a Sinutab and put on my favorite restorative yoga music. I embraced everything that was coming up. I noticed resistance. I breathed and didn’t push. I found my middle ground and was able to stay there. Healing tears fell softly. I meditated and lost track of time. My husband came and went and let me be. He knows better than me sometimes.
I began to feel better and went to watch tv to distract myself … and found I had no appetite for it at all. ZERO. I wanted to stay in solitude. I journaled instead.
The old habits of distractions, shopping, cleaning, entertainment, drinking and eating had lost their pull in that moment. By being fully present and knowing how to ride the wave and find my middle ground allowed me to center myself.
So I honored the request to be alone and put my teenager to bed early. I woke up as a headache free and stress free adult once more. Ready to approach the day with a sense of curiosity.
Thank you to the makers of Sinutab, yoga and meditation, journaling, my husband and friends who support and nourish me, and to those of you who read this today!
May we all find our middle ground in the waves of life.
This is an inspiring poem I shared at the end of Saturday’s Find Your Middle Ground and Winter Yin Workshop. Yin yoga is about going inwards and deeper, through the layers of our being until we touch that precious peace within. Beautiful words from Danna Faulds to bring us home to our guiding presence.
Its always here, the silent
underpinning, the foundation
beneath the foundation.When
I reach deep enough into darkness,
inside fear, self doubt, aversion, or
despair, there’s something so intact
I almost miss it in my focus on
brokenness. Its always here, this
ground of being. ike the water in
which fish swim, its easy to overlook
the eloquence of truth. Its here, this
guiding presence, this calm, abiding
stillness. Its here when I don’t try
to make life any more or less than
what it is, when I stop trying to be
right. Its here when I unclench my
fists and breathe, when I let go of the
demand to make ife smooth or easy.
Its here, the oneness underying
multiplicity, the exquisite “is-ness”
of everything. I could shout it from
the rooftops, but its true no matter
what I say, and I know you’ll find
it in your own time, your own way,
that precious moment when you
choose to meet life exactly as it is.
~ Danna Faulds. Taken from “One Soul” More Poems From the Heart of Yogau