Category Archives: Uncategorized

Letting Go – So Comes Love

bev2nud9dqs-markus-spiskeE.E. Cummings in his poem Let it Go, persuades us to let it all go…’it was born to… sworn to go…’ he says, ‘so comes love’.

The human spirit in its fully realized state lives in peaceful union with the dissolve, welcoming opportunities to let go, shed heaviness and density, die and be reborn repeatedly.

But most of us are unwittingly aligned with the prevailing creed that indoctrinates us to hold on for dear life, avoid death, fight for our lives, battle illness… and terrorism… and environmental disaster…

But all this avoiding, fighting and battling expends our life force and keeps us in a rigid posture of anticipating the next threat or danger, unable to fully engage with joy, love and beauty in the present.

We can hold ourselves apart, in preparation for what might ‘get’ us or destroy us next, or we can practice non-resistance, of letting in and letting go.

Really it is about our choices in the moment. Do we let in pleasure, choose thoughts that feel well in our bodies rather that disturb us, focus on simple beauty rather than horror? We can let go of our compulsion to suffer and still take calculated action where it is needed.

The divide or internal split occurs when the spirit longs for the dissolve, and the mortal fearfully defends against it.  This holy letting go into love and joy, this knowing of our boundless nature and our part in some greater oneness threatens the ego; the separate self.

To love the dissolve and embrace our full humanity fulfills a profound dimension of our purpose.   It is wholeheartedly human to weep at the comings and goings, the end of the flowering, the aging, the loss of the loved one who is returning to the nonphysical realm… the surrendering of our own lives when the time comes…

We have selected this human incarnation to experience the full spectrum.  We have the capacity to hold two seemingly opposing states of being.  We can be tender and mournful and simultaneously celebratory of life, and realize that the inevitable dissolving is, in reality, no threat whatsoever to our overall nature.

 

 

 

 

line2

In The Grace of this World

0brbckmbvnu-mark-basarabThe Peace of Wild Things

When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water and the great heron feeds.

I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief. I come into the presence of still water and I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light. For a time, I rest in the grace of the world and am free.

 – Wendell Berry

Consciousness is awakening with a tsunami-like intensity while magnetic poles are shifting beneath our feet.  We can find still waters by delighting in the beauty of this world and in our sense of belonging to it.

What other purpose could there be than to participate with whole heart and raw presence moment to moment?

And what other approach to living than this could have the enduring capacity to carry us through the chaos of this transformation to verdant shores?

 

 

line2

Yes to all I am


argsfv-xilq-rob-morton

“All that fell to wake this sleeping heart, the road thread high and low. All this seeding the sacred meeting, this wholly coming home…” – Amy McTear

 

In becoming more and more of who we are, we can count on the subsequent collapse of all that was built on resistance to the life most meant for us. I am emerging from just such a cleanse. I have spent the past several years tenderly mourning the losses and surrendering comforts, crutches and safe choices in order to clear the way for a life much more truly my own.

The transition to a more whole version of myself has been eventful.  I think as we say yes to a bigger life, the universe colludes with us.  The momentum with which our lives can be corrected and dramatically swept clean is often quite turbulent. When we are in it, it feels counter intuitive  to allow this natural process.

I am pretty certain the the storm has passed and the wreckage is behind me now. I feel like I am standing before a bright open field, sobered, humble and real. I have a profound sense of peace and a capacity for joy that I have not previously experienced.

I believe my personal experience and that of many other people mirrors a larger movement.  As humanity awakens to larger sense of self, many forms and structures that are out of integrity with the greater dimension of who we are suffering their demise.

In these powerful times, we can contract in fear or contact a deeper trust, and allow the mysterious intelligence of life to run it’s course.  All we need to do is claim our desire for a true life.  These cycles of rise and fall are nothing new, yet what is being born, if we fully allow it, is.

line2

Sculpting What Is To Come

Potter working with clay on wheel in studio

We are highly skilled observers of what is, so much so that we often neglect our most important role as the sculptors of what is to come.

We are like a stringed instrument, each mental and emotional state a particular note or vibrational frequency.  What ever note we pluck draws that note from other instruments in our surroundings.

This acts in accordance with the scientific principle of resonance.  Substances such as metal, wood, air, water, even flesh and bone will resonate at a similar frequency imposed from another source that has similar vibratory characteristics.  This aspect of resonance is known as sympathetic vibration.

By continuously observing and focusing on the pain and suffering of our current reality, we are resounding a tone of deficiency.  By doing so, we strengthen that vibration within our electromagnetic field and we draw resonant tones of that nature from our surroundings.  Our lives become an even greater expression of a lower vibrational state.

Of course, it is vital that we understand our emotional states and negative thought patterns in order to shift them.  We do this by turning toward them with wakeful curiosity, rather than by falling into unconsciously.

We can routinely ask ourselves, “What would I prefer to be feeling?”  To succeed at creating a life that is reflective of our soul’s desire (literally), we must practice these feeling states.

By tuning and retuning ourselves to thoughts and feelings that inspire us, we draw resonance from our outer environment and inevitably our lives become a representation of our higher vibrational nature.

 

line2

Die while you are alive

3swoqrm6fpc-wil-stewart I dreamt last night…   

I was at a party when I suddenly became aware of an ominous man walking through the room.  He spotted me, plucked me from the crowd and pulled me through a steel door into an empty cinder block chamber.  As the door slammed, I saw he held a gun.  Overcome with grief and fear, I exploded into a maelstrom of agonizing tones.  It was clear he was going to take my life.

Almost immediately, I decided that I did not want this emotional state to define my remaining moments.  I quieted and with all my strength turned my focus toward feeling love and well being.  My executioner positioned me before the target, put the hood over my head and fired a series of harrowing shots that rattled the cell walls and ravaged the air…

Continue reading

line2

Dying Well

tb4wis6xoqk-aaron-burden
“As attachments
soften,so does our suffering. As identity exhausts itself, what remains is the Great Silence from which all life arises and into which it passes away.”    ~(Joyce Kornblatt)

In allowing the transitory beauty of autumn to deeply affect us, we are provided an exquisite opportunity to practice dying.

Our lives present a series of opportunities in fact, to die well year to year, day to day, moment to moment.  Only if we are willing to die fully, can we live fully.

As sap descends, so our awareness goes underground for this intimate meeting with our source.  The tree’s attention is withdrawn from the leaves, and so we evolve when we periodically allow that which seemed to define us, to fall away.

Outer light recedes in this season leading up to winter solstice, directing our essential focus to our inner garden.  We turn to face the phases, relationships, false images and aspects of self that are withering and dying within us.  Allowing them to dissolve into nourishing compost for our roots, we distill and absorb the essential wisdom from each experience.

And then we wait, allowing the Great Silence as well as the temporary emptiness, not asking what is next…not yet

 

line2

Where the Two Worlds Touch

7qdy5xzewpq-adam-zvanovec
I was called on this weekend to support a very dear soul sister, who was making her passage from this world to the non-physical realm.  In her last days of life, she asked that I facilitate a circle of love, light and sacred sound. 

What a privilege to stand witness to that precious place where the two worlds touch, that fluid opening where spirit and matter distill and converge.

We gathered around her to create space to release our attachments, celebrate her life, and exchange final words of love and encouragement.

As we did this, our non-physical counterparts could be felt standing along the other side of that door; her beloved guides, friends and family in the spirit realm, waiting to receive her.  A seamless path was being generated in that loving collaboration; a bridge of light for her crossing.

In witnessing the dying process, that aspect of each of us that is never born and never dies is called to presence, to compassionately and humbly hold our humanity.  And just as the baby needs the mother’s water to break to facilitate a smooth passage, so our tears serve to lubricate her journey.  We allow them to flow, knowing they honor all that she has meant to us and celebrate her generous contribution of beauty to this realm.

To stand near the threshold with her, to witness her progression of becoming more light than matter, to have watched her dissolve into the sunlight of the heart, has an awesome power to turn each one of us toward what is essential.

We breathe our acceptance and allow the wind to blow away our own tracks in the sand, releasing our attachments to the hurtful impressions of this world, to all that is not truly us.

I offer this song in gratitude and love to Dylana, who in grace and beauty made her passage yesterday.  Good work, my dear sister.  As you are loved back into the great Oneness, you reside now within our very breath, perhaps closer even than ever before…

This is an original devotional chant, celebrating sacred partnership with the beloved other, as well as sacred unity within our own being.  Nara means ‘human’ and ayana means ‘eternal’.  A Narayana is one whose earthly walk is a marriage between the human dimension of self, and the eternal self.  This is a love song, sung between these two aspects, that form the human spirit.

Om Namo Naraya Naya
Hari Om Namo  Naraya Naya
Hari Om, Hari Om

(A Hindu mantra)

This is how I die
Into the love I have for you
As pieces of cloud dissolving
In sunlight

( 13th c mystic poet, Rumi)

Original melody and music by Amy McTear and Joseph Jastrab.  Amy on vocals and drums.  Joseph on guitar.  With musical contributions from Dahlia Bartz-Cabe, Dona Ho Lightsey, Molly Tweedy and Steve Gorn.  Recorded and Produced by Brian McTear and Amy Morrissey at Minor Street Records in Philadelphia, PA.

line2

Turning and Returning

“This turning toward what you deeply 
love saves you…. Read the book of your life which has 
been given you.   A voice comes to your soul saying- Lift your foot, cross over, move into emptiness of question and answer and question.  The quest never ends.”     ~Rumi
okaax4mi2hc-sasha-freemind No matter what the struggle is, I find myself introducing to many of my clients a practice I refer to as the spiritual practice of Turning.

When I say Turning, I mean the act of turning attention, as Rumi describes, toward what we most deeply love.  This is best practiced whenever possible, but is especially important in moments of fear and pain.

The whirling dervish practices turning towards the beloved, the light; relinquishing attachment to the ego’s suffering and the hurtful impressions of the world.  To avoid dizziness, he must find the center of the center, where he can contemplate his true beingness, as born out of the purity of the heart.

This returning to what we love polishes the heart, and allows us to become familiar with what uplifts us and elicits our true aliveness.

What do you most deeply love?

I love to explore the spiritual dimension of my being, reflect on the journey of the human soul and unfold it like a mystery novel.  I love to teach.  I love to inspire.  I love to be immersed in natural beauty.  I love deep emotional bonds.  I love to explore unity with others musically and experience the power and vulnerability of my own voice.

When I find myself in fear; afraid I do not have enough, afraid I will have to do work in the world I do not love, afraid I will be without love… I practice Turning.

I conjure up and reconnect to the images of love and beauty that inspire me, the most profound vision for my life, that I have secreted away in the most tender chambers of my heart.

I find life quickly responds and what I engaged with inside, begins to appear in many forms around me.

By attuning to what we deeply love, we draw resonance from our outer environment.  Not a rejection or denial of current reality, rather the nobel role of the Master, turning and tuning her life.

 

 

line2

The Larger Story

“What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly.”  – Lao Tzu

Photoxpress_37660907q9l5nxbz78-dan-darell
Some years ago, I had reoccurring dreams that my shoes were too small.  Each time I opened the front door, I would discover that the buildings had all completely crumbled.

As consciousness awakens and we make our fated journey toward a more realized Self, previously held images that are too small or have deviated too far from our essential truth, begin to collapse.

We may find ourselves disoriented, in chaos, ill, no longer fitting into our current profession, lifestyle, or relationships the way we once did.  We are called to the task of redefining and seeking out new story lines, relevant images, teachers and paradigms that support us in our journey forward.

This happens on a personal and a grand scale.

Part of our current unrest as a civilization, is that we are outgrowing our cosmology, or our explanation of the relationship of human beings to the whole of the universe.

A dominant cultural and religious belief that underlies our western culture, is the supposition that human beings are the only life form with soul, or divine consciousness. This superior perspective, presumes that all other life exists to serve our needs.  This enables us to perpetrate some deeply careless and insensitive acts.

As the effects of our behavior produce more and more disturbing results, we are forcibly awakened to an intimate understanding of the concept of interdependence.  We evolve our capacity to see divinity, not just in our own likeness and image, but in the likeness and image of all.

line2

Living From the Inside Out

xsgapcvboju-dmitry-ratushny What brings you joy?  What do you want to do?  You are here to serve your own individual growth, as well as the growth of the whole.  Your wholehearted participation and generosity of spirit in sharing your gifts, is the promise your soul made in taking this life.

As children, most of us were told to choose from the options presented to us.  “What do you want to be when you grow up?”  If we said, “A gong player”, we would have been steered toward a ‘real’ profession.

We are a species in transition.  As we evolve, many of us can no longer tolerate playing dress-up.  We feel depressed when we ignore the yearning to follow the north star in our own chest, that inner lover calling us to express who we truly are.  If we felt safe, we would break from the current culture, and create our lives from the inside out.

When we set out on a course for our unique life, there is an incomplete picture before us.  This agitates the practical side of us that has been conditioned to follow the known path. But, the inner lover knows we are on a holy mission, a grand treasure hunt of finding out, through what we love, what we have come to offer. In order to do this we to participate fully in life, which means take risks, try things, put out invitations, mess up, fall down, tolerate feeling lost and doubt our sanity – often.

It is by experiencing this contrast that we understand our ultimate safety.  We reclaim our innate freedom and joy, as well as discover the most appropriate application for our gifts.

 

line2