Tuesday, October 27, 2009

We are all connected...

‘We are all connected…To each other, through biology…To the Earth, chemically…To the rest of the universe, at the atomic.” Neil de Grass Tyson

Connected biologically, chemically, atomically to each other, the planet and the universe…but are we connected emotionally? Spiritually? To not be connected would seem unlikely.

My friend E.J. Gold wrote “It is our job to alleviate the suffering of the Absolute.” I have pondered this statement for a very long time…Alleviate the suffering of the Absolute. Isn’t God supposed to be responsible for our suffering? As a parent I can say that children do have the ability add to both joy and suffering. My son could definitely spare me untold grief should he choose… so it’s possible. If we are connected, then alleviating any suffering of the Absolute would seemingly lessen the suffering of all.

Along the lines of suffering, mine and the absolute, I have been exploring the space between the exquisiteness of feeling deeply in terms of love, beauty and the divine, and the longing for a body-prophylactic for protection from the rest. But life does not work that way. If I love deeply, I will know loss. This could fit with Buddha’s “all life is suffering.” Although I’m not ready concede that all life is suffering, I’ll agree that love and loss are inseparable.

Religion has a long tradition of glorifying suffering, to the point of self-inflicted suffering. Our cultivation of suffering is a learned behavior so it is something we can unlearn. “Alleviating the suffering of the Absolute,” intrigues me as a spiritually-mature, healthy alternative to martyrdom.

Perhaps we should not love or not feel?
What do you think landed us here? Not feeling, lead to massive consumption in order to numb our disconnect… and still we felt. From there our inner-toxicity has seeped outward and onto planet...

From the sustainable, whole-systems approach, the equation would be: pain and suffering form connection…, counterbalanced by the joy, inspiration, comfort, and constructive mirroring, generated from resonate sharing of friends, loved ones, and kindred-spirits. Ultimately, the power of love alleviates mountains of suffering. The deep shadow reflective rivers of sadness should not frighten but serve to strengthen our resolve to love more fully…

We are, after all connected…to the planet through biology. When the planet suffers, so does the body and the planet is suffering. Here it’s a no-brainer to commit to alleviating the suffering of the plant and our biological-vehicle… When our body suffers, the mind, the emotional and the spiritual body suffer as well. From dis-ease it is hard to dream new worlds, love fully and experience the searing beauty of our miraculous connectivity.

“The beauty of a living thing
is not the atoms that go into it,
But the way those atoms are put together…
The cosmos is also within us..,
We are made of starstuff.
We are all ways…
The cosmos can know itself…” ~ Carl Sagan

What would you share with the cosmos?
What suffering could you spare the absolute?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


“When men lack a sense of awe, there will be disaster.” ~Lao Tzu (531 B.C.)

I think if Lao Tzu were coming to dinner we’d have much to discuss.
I spent the day on-line catching up on Ted-Talks, the Bioneers Annual conference postings, cutting-edge organic and environmental art, and other relevant planetary doings…from the hopeful to the hopeless, taking in the global picture. I will say that there are a lot of remarkable people, projects and lines of awareness emerging at this time. Right along side are critical global issues which could so easily render me frozen, mute or lost in despair. If he were to be at dinner I would tell Lao Tzu that awe and disaster have arrived as the Siamese-twins of this era. Then there are the oblivious…until disaster finds them too.

Disaster is being felt each day in a billion ways by millions of beings, as the norm of their lives is being irrevocably altered. It is felt in the faceless-wild spaces where climate is changing, and man has infringed deeply into the sacred balance of nature, fracturing once-whole systems… and those are the first waves. Disaster is setting up house.

Meanwhile…I am in awe… In awe of the guy who is making fat-free (elegant organic low-material) furniture. In awe of the artists who sculpt amazingly sensitive detailed sculptures out of used tires and the photographer who photographs the largest tire dump in the world so that the horror and beauty coexist within the viewer. In awe of the man who while working out the details of using radio waves to cure cancer discovered he could make an engine which will run on salt water. In awe of the multitude of thoughtful, creative, sustainable ideas being birthed and midwifed into form.

Yes disaster is on the march… but the brilliance it provokes in mankind is so awe-inspiring. I wonder what Lao Tzu would have to say about that?

My shaman friend keeps directing me towards my wonder. Awe and wonder seem similar if not the same, although wonder seems child-like and awe seems more adult and age appropriate. I may need to invite him to dinner as well… I was struggling with wonder and feeling discomfort in the naiveté and innocence which accompanied wonder. I did have a dream in which I had “eyes-of-wonder” sort of like glasses which I could take on and off. In playing with them I learned that I can’t wear “eyes-of-wonder” while doing organic review work, but I could wear them in nature…

The point being- I’m finding my way. I’m choosing my side, I’m choosing awe and I’ll continue to work on wonder… It’s a comfort really, a clear job description that I can handle. I don’t have to have answers to problems large or small. I can own my awe.

Disasters will come.

Our power is in our searching and supporting all that is awe worthy.

If Lao Tzu is right… rediscovering awe could be our salvation.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Sustainable Sprituality

"If a female Dalai Lama can be more effective, then why not?" "It will come. No problem." ~ The Dalai Lama, opening day of his Vancouver Peace Summit.
Perhaps unrecognizable to the untrained belly…but encapsulated in; “It will come. No problem”…is nothing-less than permission to alter the path we are on….in support of- our future Hermanity.
In nature it takes the dance of masculine and feminine to conceive and create new life, spiritually is no different. The Eastern Yin-Yang Symbol reflects the healthy dance and the balance of the universal masculine-feminine. In recent times religion/laws/myth/story have been solely about Man-God. Having God, with no Fem to temper, seduce, and occasionally over-ride, rule supreme for several thousand years has taken a toll.
So check it out: the 14th incarnation of the Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, himself a recognized God-resonant, spoke publicly that- he saw “no problem” with a female incarnation, Goddess-resonant Dalai Lamass?.
…Boys and girls- that is a very big opening in the psychic streams if one chooses to take it in. We have not heard such a statement recognizing the potential of divinity manifesting in a female form- well not from one with the Dalai Lamas level of spiritual authority, by my count, in over 4,000 years. This is big. How big? No other awaited messiah is preached as gender optional. “It will come” ~ Very big. No mosque, synagogue or Sunday school on the planet this week will be telling the daughters of man that they are worthy and credible containers of Divinity in their reflection.
Guess what?
We do not need to wait for his Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama to pass, then wait for untold eons for incarnation to choose a Fem-reincarnation, (as true with some beliefs…). Diva-Fem flows freely, no mountains to climb, or self flagellation necessary, and the big secret is… it’s never- not been here.
What has kept it from us? Stories and millennia of behavior modification in the form of social exile, shame, burning at the stake, stoning.
Wait…let me check….?
Yep, still there- the streams of fem, the void of pre-manifestation, the renewable dance of polarity. Still there!
For those of you, women and men, who have been waiting dutifully for permission to really feel- life, love, and one’s self as an intrinsic part of the streams… The 14th incarnation of the Dalai Lama, has spoken…"If a female Dalai Lama can be more effective, then why not?" "It will come. No problem."
Note he did not say, God decrees a women’s body unholy, her mind not up to the task, she ate the apple…, He said, ”…why not. It will come. No Problem.” ~ Love this man!
So we now have permission.
To explore sacred feminine manifest.
Magically mind, and soul begins to balance,
Self discovering self
In dance of yin-yang eternal,
Refreshed by streams…
Of universal-unconditional love,
Somewhere a war will end,
or never start,
A tree planted,
A girl educated.
And in time
A planet re-dreamed
And its inhabitants redeemed.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Let there be light...

"A candle looses none of its light by lighting another candle." ~Unknown
And yet energy is squandered when attempting to light a steal rod, or wet noodle….

Many years ago I worked with two brilliant and wise women. They owned Stereoscope Bakery in Incline Village, Lake Tahoe. The women felt strongly that everyone should know how to bake their own bread, much like Gandhi promoted the looming of cotton to make one’s own clothes. They offered free bread baking classes, as a way of empowering others. Fascinatingly, they found that when the classes were free, people did not honor the gift, show up on time or complete the classes. Later classes were offered with a fee. With that a value was established and the participants were able to learn how to bake their own bread.

I’m not saying that everything should have a price, just that it should have a value. Otherwise it can be “casting pearls before swine.” This is a soul saddening dilemma because the caster of peals, can believe, because the pig has no appreciation for the peals, (gift of self given) that there is no value. It’s hurtful to the soul not to be seen or received. It contributes to low self-esteem. For a sustainable system the wholeness and value of the elements, in this case the resource of self must be respected.

Lighting the candle of those who step forth, holding their candle out to yours is one thing. It is entirely another to drag someone out of an unconscious stupor, dig though their trash, find something potentially flammable, put it in there hand and light it on fire. That never ends well.
Then there are the ones who take heart, ego or imagination hostage, demanding the lighting of the steal rod they are wielding… Good luck with that.

The act of sharing light, fire, knowledge, creativity, passion, does not give the giver say in how the recipient uses, expresses, or extinguishes the light. Attachment drains off energy from the potentially sustainable system of community growth and sharing.

Giving is only half of the circle. The other half is receiving the gift of others. Then there is gratitude for those who came before and lit the way… gratitude is its own magical bridge to new land.

There is a story that each soul upon birth in given the amount of energy needed to blast out of the orbit of the time and situation of which they were born, and into the orbit of the souls destiny. The problem is energy is often caught in the webs of others. Learning to liberate ones energy and still be open to give and receive is its own form of mastery.

Mentors, those who can embody passionate engagement with boundaries can be invaluable here, imprinting by healthy example. Whenever possible choose to work, play, and interact with the realest people you can find. Those for whom you can exchange light, ideas, empathy, compassion, maps, passions and more…