Tag Archives: Healing

Wisdom: Rumi on the Rocks

naked ladies

Coffee?   Toast?  Kisses?  How to transition from slumber’s sweetness to everyday responsibilities, preserving the wisdom and certainties of Self while activating the personality’s readiness and skills?

On inspiration just after the onset of summer I opted for reading aloud each morning from Coleman Barks’ “A Year with Rumi”.   I began in earnest July 1, settling into a chair on the back deck, book in hand.  Absorbing the morning cool, I started to speak into the forest, hoping I could harmonize with or at least not disturb Her morning melodies.

” . . .Dawn comes; blindness drains away.  Each day is eternity.   Do not avoid your suffering. Plunge it into the  Nile . . . .”

My inspiration on transitions must have been mistaken.    After reading such enticements, why would I want to pull on my collared shirt, clean jeans, and work shoes?   I only wanted to sit and reach deeper, to sink into uninterrupted contemplation and heart dreaming.

I encountered the same on July 2 and 3 and 4.   I considered giving up the project entirely.  But somewhere in the week of July 11, a change occurred.  Instead of sitting on the back deck in a chair, I sought the coolness of a stone overlooking the front garden.

On this rock, against the earth, the poetry lifted yet grounded and prepared me.   Sensual symbols accompanied by wise verse called me to remember the Heart’s values, to engage the risk and bliss of small sacrifices for the sake of healing.  Small gifts to give moment by moment in the everyday world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Balance: Dealing with that Desire and Aversion Thing

Happy GoatsI’m journeying through the final hours of a 14-day cleanse.    The desire to massage away my daily chocolate cravings and generally reset my body chemistry motivated this attempt.

The last intentional cleanse I undertook was Kris Carr’s 21-day Crazy, Sexy Diet alkalizing regimen, which fundamentally simplified my vegan diet, boosted my self-confidence, and gave me a taste of  what vibrant health can be.

A few years and lots of change have passed since then, and somehow in that gap of time and events, I forgot about the emotional and spiritual re-centering that can accompany physical purification.  It’s an obvious reality, really, and an odd one for me to forget; perhaps a sign of how much I have truly needed to trace what has become an insatiable, distracting chocolate desire to its roots!

The Buddha teaches in his Four Noble Truths (at least as I understand them) that the cause of suffering is craving or thirst, which is expressed in the constant pursuit of external things, ideas, and experiences that appear to bring happiness, contentment and peace.   Frustratingly, the delivered satisfaction and relief are only temporary. This is chocolate’s bittersweetness.

Craving is fed by ignorance of, discomfort with, and distance from who we are.   The Buddha prescribes the Eightfold Path, leading to Enlightenment or Awakening, as the path for healing this dis-ease.

Cleansing, I’ve realized, works along these lines, simultaneously coaxing the body into balance, while providing space for gentle self-observation,  release from extensions and a subsequent re-centering.

What I’ve  found at the center during these two weeks has been me.  And perhaps more importantly me being ok, even happy, with me.   A healing, chocolate-free  enlightenment of sorts.

About the image of the goats, which starts this post:  I snapped their picture while journeying along a winding state highway to a house-warming last Sunday.   They seemed so happy with themselves, balanced on their traffic-watching log ,that I felt inspired to include them.

Sound and Silence: Encountering Voices of Grief and Hope on the Buffalo

neon mushroomsSunday I rested in the predawn stillness, waiting for the first bird songs. Sweet anticipation infused the Ozark woodlands. It played quietly on the whispering breeze and in my heart. What a magical time, this transitional interlude between night and day!

Steady snores grumbled over from the collection of tents erected by river-floating Texans a few sites away, but it didn’t matter. After two days of hiking in Arkansas’s treasured Buffalo National River area, my ears and heart were attuned to Nature’s finer rhythms and melodies and were harmonizing with the Heart’s deeper Sound. What a change from just days before!

Certainly being in Nature refreshes, recalibrates and renews. I was very happy to be walking with my brother who had traveled down from Chicago. Yet hiking in silence and laying in a tent alone at night temporarily amplifies the inner stories.   It gives unresolved hurts and struggles space to speak their pain. And their hopes.

As I move closer to legally resolving final ties with the spiritual community I helped create and chose to leave last November, I’ve encountered sadness, self-doubt, and inklings of new freedom . . . feelings that had been insisting on some attention but whose mouths I had temporarily sealed with the duct tape of work and other responsibilities. That is until the testing, healing days and nights on the Buffalo.

I listened to my pain, as my brother and I crested lush hills and walked along streams swollen by the remnants of Hurricane Bill. I listened to my Heart strengths and the parts of me wanting to change. I spoke admirations to the trail-crossing box turtle, the copperhead warming in sun-touched leaves, and the surprising neon mushrooms poking up along the way. Through the climbs and descents, I accepted that sometimes in transitional human moments the voice of grief mixes with the voice of anticipation, anticipation for the unexpected good yet to come.  Would you agree?  The resonant Sound that contains both voices is the courageous beat of the honest Heart, present in the moment, perfectly willing to release from the passing night and stretch into the arriving dawn.

With the Texans still snoring, I gave thanks for the Heart’s evolutionary wisdom and welcomed the whippoorwill’s morning song.