Tag Archives: Awakening

without within without

29 Jun

I am the space in which i move –

not the other way around.

Motion happens in this shift, oh and stillness, too.

I am watching out from eyes i can not place!

Oh, who am i? kidding.

Cleaning house(a joyful chore!)

now that I am

so much larger

than i perceived

whom is watching

me to BE.

_ /’\_ X I\I

I used to live there

13 Jun

I used to live there

and I admit

I do still visit

when I forget,

sinking back 

into the piles of laundry,

the dust under beds and on the blades

of outdated ceiling fans in every room,

so many things left undone and haunting

when I could not find

the key to start the engine

for motion

most days.

Moving the house and home

of me

from the sink hole

started slowly

at first,

a notion

of another possible address

where a clean slate

could be gifted

from me

to me

a space


but felt enough

to at first help my head rise from the pillow

more toward

the day

and less, less the night.

Moving is never a matter of money,

but instead an issue of inner knowing

of just where one lives

in truth.

I see the one who lives there, now,

in the front

still in his pajamas

watering the weeds

that won the battle over the grass,

and my chest muscle tightens  – 

remembering the pain of my own lost address,

but what can I say?

Only to whisper,

gentle, from the distance

of my passing car:


you don’t have to live there

one second more –

you too

can be one

who knows

that you used to live

where you are now

but you will have learned

that you don’t have to

live there


A Selection of True Awakening Experiences Part II

13 Feb

When beautiful Barbara asked if I wanted to participate in A Selection of True Awakening Experiences Part II,   I took a few days to think if I could participate because the flow is especially pressing to me right now, and writing at all, let alone reading others, has gone to the side.  I am teaching many classes which require lots of grading, so taking time for anything beyond eating, sleeping, and brief, brisk walks is rationed.  To have tasks that require my full focus is just what is needed now, because this is what is happening.  This squeezing  will perhaps bring me awareness that l need to transition to something new that leaves more open spaces for body and mind.  Or perhaps I will be able to continue to find the spaciousness of opening as needed within a challenging flow of time.  As this post is due today, I wake again at 3 AM, with a desire to write again, just in time.

I thank Barbara, who gives space for words and a place for connecting back during these February days.

Where I find myself now:

All instants are opportunity for returning to me, again and again,

second by second.

Who is this me I am returning to?

Good question.  That is the one I ask.  Who is the me I am returning to?  The non dual teachings are the ones speaking to me now.  Who is the one observing the one thinking?  The more I return to the presence the less the attention lost in the game feels okay.  Returning home becomes a known and effective possibility, even when I think I am drowning or being blown about in this life storm.

What does this observing look like in real life?

An example, one morning, as I was driving and thinking worry thoughts  about my daughter, (lost in an idea I had that moment about who I am in relation to my role as “mother”), I got on a bridge that does not lead to my workplace.  There was no turning about on the bridge, of course, so I had to carry on the road until I could do a u-turn on the other side.  My life choice to get lost in thoughts while driving forces me to WAKE UP!  One moment I was lost in worry, the next moment I was back in the present moment, on a road that forced me to return.   No curse words were uttered; there was no worry of a late arrival.  This wandering girl is loved in her lost moments.  The second I missed my turn and realized there was no way but to go forward over the bridge, I was offered many long views of water meeting ocean, the light and fog mixing to a rapturous view that was invisible a moment before.   I can, in an instant, return to being bathed in the morning light.

The world  says to me “be here;”  every road leads back to me.

When I am hurrying, confused, thinking that something is wrong, I am gone for seconds, moments, hours, sometimes.  But the returning is becoming more the normal.  The space of no thoughts, no agenda, no worry is often steady.  Joy.   The outer world dances with me – and my flow is as easy as what (and who) appear next.

My thoughts lost are mirrored to me with such compassion.  The bridge which takes me far from my destination, brings me back again.  My thoughts play back to me on the stage of the world.

The title Life as Improv becomes an ever more real instant to instant thing.  I can go about as the perceiver who meets even old friends without an idea of how the moment will unfold.

Who is appearing on my stage right now?



I can see and feel your shifts

as subtle as snow’s first flakes, as dramatic as seizures.

You are me, I see, as you pass by,

your face, your expression, my mirrored image.

I feel your heart squeeze and know not the cause

but it is my heart, too.

Better with no words-

Better quiet now,

but instead it can be still loud, at times — as the thoughts built towers yesterday and now towers fall, regularly.

There is still the demolition, my house is still falling down.

Everyday I get to tear down another idea, closer and closer to the invisible veil.

I’m in the dungeon shining light into the corners

where the hidden dust of old ideas needs sweeping.

But I am happy to report,

the air has lost its smell –

and god willing I will build no more towers.

I  will not build new religions for the key that opens my door today.

I am comfortable in huts.

I will ever be a nomad,

even if I stay in one spot.

Beginning again again, each day,

do I see the flawless avocado for my toast?

Do I savor tea as it is sipped;

do I meet you with no yesterday story of me?

My today is frighteningly simple, even in this busy time,

as I’ve lost my yearning for most things.  The middle path was not a distant philosophy but a real clearing out and daily practice.  Now the subtlety of  desire and aversion becomes apparent – the consumptions of body and mind, clear.  The addictions of the subtlest nature are rooting out and getting dropped bit by bit.

Awakening is a heavy word – to me it is just the beginning, one dawn at the start of many days.

In vigilance and joy, driving to work, talking to students, juggling chores, buried in all the paperwork that life generates, losing my focus yet gaining it again, with less and less time in between…

remembering myself

to be


who doesn’t need instructions to flow

down to the sea.

Up tomorrow:  Brian at  middle pane


Transmutation Trailer

19 Apr


I know anything that reminds me, quickly, of being alive, in the moment, open, awake, still and ready, is a very good thing to bookmark.  Our eyes are that camera.  The rising steam from a cup of tea is just for us, the dew on the grass, our tennis shoes in the sand, right now to observe and allow ——–   all experiential happenings bring us back to mystery.

inside job

25 Dec

Where I am x and  x is = to ∞ ,

why do I ever go around as if

x is = to all that I can see with my eyes and finite?

What sort of geometry and algebra

has to be proofed

again and again –

the same problem in different words –

for a pupil who refuses to draw on the board?

That we are christ-ing

seems suddenly clear.

We are learning to see:

the potential of endless –

the true value of forever –

the reality of all possible –

instead of counting the change in our pocket

and calling ourselves poor.

The same flame that lights the

brightest –  largest stars

somehow resides immaterially immortally immensely

within the material

of us.

A miracle such as this

is overlooked;

we glance beyond our own pregnant

emptiness into plastic dime store glitter.

We squint through blackened windows

shouting out,

who is there?

Who has come to save me?

Today, I feel

like wearing a white

robe, closing  my eyes,

my hands facing out to bless us all,

while I withdraw

to the fireside gathering

in the middle of my dark hollow chest.

From here,

rises the Titanic –

from here

the budding of all flowers opens –

from here I hear –

the pop of  the champagne cork

of endless joy

for what we make suddenly appear from

within our black magician hats.

Tonight and always now I am hiring myself

for the job – that I used to hire out.

I am just beginning to see the irony

of the inside job.

What a joke I play on me.



my deadbeat dad

21 Feb


he stumpled upon

the gardens sprung –

whole universes

spilling out.

He watched them grow

from his high spot

until he fell asleep.

When he awoke,

there was a dream

that he almost remembered

that seemed to say,

HE was the one

who made it all this way;

even though, he had found it

already cooking along.

Then HE

told it, this world,

have at it, you kids and

HE hid away all of the keys.

Then HE threw up some

plastic that mimicked the truth

and buried it

below the dust.

HE paid for a book

in which HE was the star,

wooed the corrupt

(taped to view later);

HE paid off the guard, and

confused nimble spirits


HE got him a numbers’ guy,

taught him some Ponzi and

together they

printed some sums

on downed trees.

They took the cash down and

passed it around

for all the slippery bros.

They fingered some puppets

and boom boxed some tunes, and

Punch and Judy’ed us all in the gut.

Oh dad, you’re not my dad.

Mother ought lock

you in the closet.

We’re feeling so sad.

But cry not for  long, for the secret is close –

and the tree has both riddle and salve.

We were only playing

at sleep, but we missed the alarm, and

the dream was so real, we were lost.

my attendance policy

13 Feb

be here

Your attendance in this class counts for 10% of your final grade:  but some may say, showing up accounts for all of it.

You don’t have to be clever.  You don’t have to do anything but show up.

All the posturing, the scripting, the worry, the judgement, the hierarchal shuffling in your head right now – poppycock = what will flow naturally through you when you just show up fully present is beyond your perceived capabilities – and you cannot prepare ahead for it.

When I say attendance and class participation count for 10% of the grade, I add that showing up to class is not just coming to class.  The people who need to hear this might not get it and the people who show up, show up; they don’t need the reminder.  But I say this now to you anyway:  show up.

I know how hard it can be.  There are some places for me that are harder to show up than others.  I do understand.  There are some places an old movie reel of ideas starts playing on the screen inside my head – I have a hard time being where I am.  There are places where  I want to script what is going to occur; I want to control the environment; I want to figure out how to fit in, feel comfortable, get past the discomfort.  I want to check out because I am scared and scarred.  I waver between the idea  that this discomfort is telling me to get the hell out of dodge for my own good – or that this discomfort is asking me to stay and do some work – some clearing – some good ol’ purging,  so I can then walk away without the white noise roaring.

One interesting aspect of the class room is meeting other students.  You may find the other students by asking yourself:

Who shows up when I show up?

Show up – look around, see who else is there.  Not many at times.  On your subway ride, glance about – who is present?  At the coffee shop, in the book store, on the playground, in this class – who is present with you?

This is such a vibrant practice for me.  When we show up, it becomes clear who the others are.  You may not appear to have much in common,  as you are different ages, have different bodies and varied interests, but if you are both present, there are magic micro moments – wordless even – of eyes seeing and acknowledging that you are both HERE:   it happens!

It is becoming even clearer lately with all the devices that people have that enable them to check out on who is here and who is not.  The texters, the posters, the internet phone surfers:  it doesn’t mean they are never present, but often you can see how truly unique you are showing up while everyone else is here but somewhere else.  How brightly you stand out – and I see you from the front of the classroom where I am taking roll. 🙂

Also at times, it seems as if to not check out is creepy.  Hang on, it is okay.  Eden says to me, why are you standing there grinning – you look creepy – but at times I am present and happy and happiness leaks out of me.  In days like these, that is obviously strange.  I try to wear all black and blend in – and look cool, but my joy is bursting out of my coat seams, shooting up my spine, twinkling from my eyes.

You can use this 10% to help pull your overall grade up.  It makes for an easy A – just  for showing up!

January Challenge

17 Jan

“For those who have an intense urge for Spirit and wisdom, it sits near them, waiting.”  ~ Patanjali  *

A beautiful and inclusive soul, Barbara Franken, had a wonderful idea for the month of January on her blog.  She called her awakening tale:  January Challenge…My Awakening Experience and Moving On…  , and she invited her friends to join her in this exploration.  The 17th is my day to spin my tale for the 17th is the day of my birth in september and my daughter’s birth in november – which seems a poetic nod of the numeric sort to mystery and meaning.

the path

Having signed up to participate in this challenge, suddenly I was hit with a major case of…what is the name for this feeling of reluctance to go back over the details of my life because while it all truly happened to ME, NOW it actually feels like someone else?    The details feel tedious,  but here is where I found a place to start:

I once lived in a modern house under a canopy of old growth oaks.  We had a wooden swing hanging from a high branch out front, perfectly centered for viewing through a wall of windows.  

The house was knocked down for the value of the land when we left; all of my beautiful possessions were sold in an estate sale, yet it still exists for me,  not with regret, but with joy of a place I once inhabited.  The mirror of this experience loves to show me  the transient nature of our material world;  houses, possessions, our very bodies are one way for a while then everything changes – there is no thing to hold on to in this world.  There is no thing that I can grasp with my hand that will be forever the way it is right now.

I move along by some invisible force beckoning,  a god-sized finger points down the road a ways, a tap on my shoulder asks me to turn around,  the ground  trembles,  then finally earthquakes break the earth wide open beneath my feet; I fall endlessly it seems into the abyss, no house, no perceived security, a future written in permanent ink  now disappears off a page that never was ~  yet some thing never stops interrupting the regularly scheduled program. 

In the searching for some meaning, I’ve joined belief systems and left them only to create new ones to define who I thought I was.   I’ve been Presbyterian, Southern Baptist, Agnostic, Jewish (conservative, orthodox, reconstructionist, renewal, cabalistic, reform); then I felt the pull toward Buddhism, Taoism, random philosophy, the Vedas, and now finally  I have found the label I shall wear forever;  finally I have found a practice that suits me.  I am a Cannibal.  Eating the flesh of other humans has allowed me to come full circle to my Christian roots……..Are you still reading?

NO, REALLY… NOW there are No More Labels.  Finally, nothing – but an ongoing realization that when I ask, What is next?  I am answered, for that is the way the mystery has always spoken to me, bit by bit, pulling me in the moment to what is next.  I believed myself to be abandoned many times, but in the urge and asking, I was never left that way for good.

I have died  (or have gone to the other side for a bit), and returned by choice to raise my daughters.  I’ve had a post childbirth/near-death experience depression that turned into a dark cave-dark night of the soul –  that actually saved me.  If I had not given myself the experience of exploring my shadow, and of feeling the discomfort of the life I had chosen, if it had not gotten really, bloody uncomfortable, I might have lived the life of obligation and slow decay – so strong was my conditioned programming!  Here comes an apt quote given to me at a pivotal time from one of my key holders:  SeeingM:

“Barn’s burnt down – Now I can see the moon.”


My barn had to burn down.  It felt tragic, but now I have come to a place where I would bring marshmallows for the event – most days 🙂

My own confusion has wrought an imaginary sort of havoc; I’ve run around like a fool screaming fire more times than I can recall, but I’ve come to see those emergencies were of my own making.   I am okay.   I’ve always been okay.  

 Books often were the tool the mystery used to talk to me, though, at some points, people with the keys to my locked doors have magically appeared at the critical times they were needed.   These gifts from spirit are just as real as the laundry to be folded, the dishes to be washed, the papers to be graded that I can touch with my hands.   Lately, I am picking up on signals through people, numbers, patterns, flow and cilantro.  ha!  Not cilantro, but maybe someday.  That word just wanted to be there.

One of the most profound visitations I’ve had was invisible to everyone around me; it occurred in a moment, and filled me with the assurance that I have tapped into throughout these many years –  I have been shown how much I am loved and connected to love.

This meaningful moment for me occurred in my beautiful, modern house in my fancy neighborhood days with small children.  I was overwhelmed with fatigue and drain and disconnect in the task of taking care of my girls in days that seemed to go on and on.  My thyroid was beginning to not function so well, so I was exhausted all of the time without knowing why.    I was sitting on the couch in our breakfast nook next to the kitchen, surrounded by such wonderful windows but drowning in sheer exhaustion.   I just prayed a simple phrase, “help me through.

In that moment,   the most powerful and all encompassing love whooshed into my body – enough to make me swoon.   I was flooded with love so big,  I disappeared.  What I am describing was physical and real, and utterly unexplainable.   I can’t articulate just what happened.  It helped me through that day, but more importantly, the memory of some thing that personal and profound that answered me has helped me through these last 10 years of challenge.  As my life spiraled into outwardly seeming disarray, I had an inner knowing of this love that came when I called.  I was given a gift to get me through, to help me know I wasn’t alone, to pull me out of a cave, to pull me out of a marriage that could no longer work, to exhibit independence and strength to my daughters who were being sucked into the undertow of their father’s mental  plight.

More and more the wash of bliss seems to be a normal flow.  Behind the tasks of every moment is a spaciousness full of love, and humor, so forgive my silliness;   to me Awakening is not serious business but more a coming back to who I am, have always been, but forgot for a bit.  This original self is known by the comfort she embodies.  She is usually ready with a laugh, a dance, a deep breath, a stop for looking at the sky or a bug crawling by.

If it isn’t a momentary awakening experience like Eckhart Tolle and  Byron Katie, then perhaps it is just this walking along,  and getting pulled along, going along, trusting the path to strip and refurbish  – a cosmic car wash.  And boy, do we shine, so scrubbed and buffed at the end.  And boy, are we held during the tough, bristle-brush rubbings.  What mystery pulls me forth, I do not know, but conveying through I am, glancing right and left as I go, seeing you and you and you along the ride with me,  fractally small, connected to all, falling in love with a cat at the foot of my bed.

*  Thank you Erin for the wonderful quotation from her blog!

Here is a list of fellow path walkers and their stories as they participate in the January Challenge!

1st     Barbara  – http://memymagnificentself.wordpress.com
2nd    Paddy    – http://paddypicasso.wordpress.com
3rd     Emanuel- http://emantable.com/musings-of-a-table/
6th     Julianne – http://juliannevictoria.com
7th     Sarah     – http://theskycladwriter.wordpress.com
8th     Shree     – http://heartsongsblog.wordpress.com
9th     Dace      – http://mywaytotruth.wordpress.com
10th   Korinn    – http://www.korinn.com
11th   Sindy     – http://bluebutterfliesandme.wordpress.com
12th   Stefanie – http://dancingwithstefanie.com
13th   Mick      – http://meticulousmick.wordpress.com
14th   Joss      – Postphoned
15th   Megan   – http://mychroniclifejourney.wordpress.com
16th   Pat         – http://patinspire.org
17th   Marga    – http://lifeasimprov.com
18th   Kimberley – http://kimberlyharding.wordpress.com
19th   Becki        – http://isurvivedamurderattackmyfamilydidnt.com
20th   Serena      – http://beingmefromatoz.com
21st   Heather     – http://wildflowerwomen.wordpress.com
22nd  PurpleRay – http://purplerays.wordpress.com
23rd    Sue          – http://suedreamwalker.wordpress.com
24th    M…          – http://seeingm.wordpress.com
25th    Brian G    – http://middlepane.com
26th    Dotta       – http://dottaraphels.wordpress.com
27th    CW          – http://sunflowerrosecw.wordpress.com
28th    Laurie       – http://lauriesnotes.wordpress.com
29th    Debra       – http://ptero9.com
30th    Linda        – http://lindalitebeing.wordpress.com
31st    Michael     – http://navigator1965.wordpress.com
1st      Leigh        – http://bluegrassnotes.wordpress.com
2nd     Shaman   – http://shamanictracking.com
3rd     Joss         – http://crowingcrone.com
4th     Jenna       – http://jennadee222.wordpress.com

thinker doer knower

1 Dec


walked the high wire out,

floated tidal pools of despair,


skated lakes of learning – 

Till  no danger,

or emergency could rear.

Right as

a glimmer of space appeared,

mind shouted NOW

is  the project of self.  

A Project.  

The Self.  

Yet in all things

exists the pull of  home.

This speck of dust

is going

through the eye

of the sun.

Loving yet leaving

the little voice,


alphabetizing her thoughts.

She is

the one

who sees what she doesn’t like

without knowing she can

create anew from every




The journey is a machete;

she opens her fists

and releases all ideas,

thinking, doing, knowing…………

Pfffftttt –

A puzzle of vines!

She grabs hold and swings over the crevasse,

or dangles from the high trees and laughs with the monkeys.

I encourage the Ph.D.

in Going with the Flow, while

dissertating on Divine Will.

Accepting what is

while expounding into power –

bringing intention into form.

Two opposite paths  exist as one

within me, all ways.

All things are possible,

but most things  are no longer

of any interest

in the least.

What’s on the plate 

for dinner and dessert?

I take what is given,


I made it just for me.

who builds the matrix?

19 Nov

matrix of life

I once resided in a matrix built on the idea that a marriage had to survive no matter what.  Who built this grid?  I did.  Granted, the master designs for this planned community were laid out long before I came along.  I built onto a long tradition with my own dead ended ideas of right and wrong.  With the strong pressure for staying married, for following the social conventions, I can totally understand why I held on to those ideas for so long, 20 years in earth time 🙂

I came to smell the foul breath of dying from within.   From a deadend stop where I left myself no options,  I  wished that  All would  be over soon.  There are lenses through which the cake has always been too sweet, the dance chaotic, the dress stained, the milk turned sour, and the flowers faded and browning.  Oye.  What a sketchy neighborhood this is!

In this box,  the only legitimate reasons to leave a marriage were simple:   physical abuse, infidelity or drug addiction.   I was blind to any other options in my own reality even in the midst of a crumbling relationship and unreasonable conditions for long years of spiraling down.  I kept a smile on my face through misery and worked my diligent magic trying to fix everything that was being broken on purpose one step ahead of me.  The moment of realization was a toggle switch, I can’t fix this.  My job was to walk away in love.  Oh my, the light came on and my feet did walk in the direction that I needed to go.   The matrix crumbled in an instant and all the previous madness disappeared like the illusion that it was.  Gone.  Pooof!

Welcome to a  tiny borough that once existed in an overgrown and dying city within my little head.

Imagine the worlds we have all created, patterns of thoughts with neon signs and imagined progressions from one place to another, when all the while we are within a false grid with high walls at the edges.  Add them  all together and see them overlaid with the years of matrices before we got here, overlaid by some people who wish us no good, overlaid by the patterns of shadows made from some hidden darkness, overlaid by the game board we agreed upon before we came into our identities.  This is one damned beautiful and complicated basement game of Dungeons and Dragons – this life!  I made it all, or agreed to dwell within this mess, until I was miserable enough to say phew, this sucks; I am going to figure out what is wrong here.

The exit out does not have to be as uncomfortable as this birth scene, eh?


The game board was constructed before I even came here, yet it is added upon by me whenever I am unconsciously creating with my thoughts.  I am one of the builders of the Matrix.  I see myself spinning my little corner web, yet from my new angle, I also see the grand design of unfathomable size and elaboration.  We are born into practices, constructions, conditioning, cultures, religions, mindsets that we absorb as naturally as we breath.  I fell into living life in each and every constructed path set before me.  I’m was a good girl, I was.

Grids exist through beliefs; there are brilliant systems created for limiting human potential.  In these systems I have read about and sense oversight, myself, slight of hand, smoke and mirrors, distraction.  Who laid the patterns?  Who uses us to fill in the material with our divine spark, usurping our goodness wittingly.

This is the part I go full out woo.  You may want to stop here 🙂

Could some of these matrices we live in come from something beyond that which we can comprehend, but we can sense?  Yes, we know of greed, we know of control, power, selfishness, psychotics, narcissists.   Humans do have the potential for wrong.   But in a world of mostly good and kind people from my 47 years of walking around this world, how do we end up with a structured path set out that leads us through a world of disease?   Could some of the matrices come from eons of time, creations set out for the specific purpose of trapping our creative powers?  Who are the Archons, the Nagas, the Annunaki?  Why are the beasts afraid to show themselves, only acting from behind a veil, puppeting such clownish villains down here?


More interesting to me, though, is the idea that all of these elaborate games are in agreement for our growth.  The dark shadows we can explore collectively can overwhelm us into fear, paranoia, and powerless feelings, yet with just a little step back, we can come to the knowledge we are in a game, a game with high stakes.  Perhaps we need it to feel real so real growth can be made.

The more ways in which we can know ourselves truly, ease the suffering of others, wake up, fear less, laugh often and realize all is under control, ultimately, the more we will be able to dissolve and recreate anew.  We have chosen and designed our game.

There really isn’t a wall around me.  There is no path except to reject the one worn by conformity, conditioning, repetition.  There aren’t boundaries and acceptable routes.  Everything is open to fresh new choices in every moment.  How do we escape from the middle of the maze once we know this?

When I can catch myself headed down the deadend streets, I stop and just be.     The present moment and dropped identity are the trumpets of truth to disintegrate my walls. I see my own personal version of the Walls of Jerico come tumbling down.

The little matrices I spin and add to the whole world of delusion are getting caught and stopped more and more before they begin.  When I stop the incorrect thinking, all of the sudden color is brighter, smells are overwhelming, life is not an HD movie;  my daughters are living breathing beings interacting with me here and now, what did she just say?   oh my god, how delightful and i almost missed it weaving my world of thoughts over here.

Sometimes I even imagine I’ve just arrived, fresh from the other side, full of the truth of the game from the skybox.   I am a quarterback dropped into a living body in the 4th quarter.  Any move is possible without the weight of my story or  imagined limitations.  I am Bill Murray in Groundhog Day; I am new and without chains, here changing the game, dissolving the walls, spinning no webs.

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