Can you feel it, too?

The new year seems to have done something wild and magical to the communication system of my body. I can feel things like never before. It seems that 2017 is a year of knowing with new senses that I didn’t have language for before now. The messages my body is giving me are getting really specific. I long ago learned to listen to what my body is telling me. But suddenly, it’s telling me things with a voice that fills my awareness with its expansive purity and truth. There is no denying what happens inside my whole being with my every thought or every interaction with the world. Thoughts and people have energy, and I am getting a clear message in my body with each thought, each experience, each dream or vision that comes into my awareness. It’s like the patterns and the vibration that exist in all life are now able to speak to me and I have nothing to do but listen and feel and know with a sense that goes beyond straight lines. It’s like the grand source of everything is showing me how much I belong to the world by speaking through my cells. It would be overwhelming, if it wasn’t so beautiful. I’m surprised by how generous life feels, and how safe. When something isn’t quite right, my body just tells me. I feel discomfort and unease, and I know to move away. But mostly what is surprising is that so many things that I say and think and do feel more than right. They feel spacious and alive and lovely. And my body tells me I am in the right place, even though the circumstances of my life still appear to be chaotic and uncertain. It seems that the source of everything that used to be seen as unknowable now wants to be felt and heard and believed. And that even though things still seem unpredictable, and hard, and nearly impossible to imagine as good the truth wants us to know its voice in new ways. And the new way is coming through our bodies.There was a time when I felt burdened to be so highly sensitive to just about everything that exists in my body. But now it really feels like a gift. It is the gift that gives me my direct connection to the divine. It shows me what I belong to, and what I need to leave behind. The sweetness of life is moving through my sensitive cells. I am starting to belong to the world like my elephant friends do, connected and aware of where to go next and what to move toward through the rumbling center in my belly. Except for me it is a full body experience. It’s with me now, as I write this to you. An all-over feeling of peace and joy. I know we are here together.  It’s been a long journey of feeling separate and alone for all of us. I am grateful that in this new year and this new time on earth that I am able to feel the new truth blossoming in my cells. I think it was here all along. But it’s nice to have finally come home to it.

The Turning of the Year

Something is being born into the world right now through us. This time of the turning of the year is a powerful time. This year feels more powerful than ever. We are beginning a new cycle. We are faced with the awakening of the consciousness of the world. All of us who are called can feel everything that the world is feeling deep inside our bodies. The ways we numbed out or avoided those feelings are no longer working for us. Our sensitivity to the suffering and the pain of the world around us has reached a crescendo that can make us feel lost. When we feel the pulse of the world it feels desperate and chaotic. Everything is coming to the surface to be healed and each one of us can feel it deeply. When we are quiet and connected we can also feel that there is a deep peace available. There is a stillness in our souls that we didn’t have access to before in the same way we do now. Some things make sense for us in our lives that we haven’t before been able to make sense of. We all know in our individual selves that something big is happening, but as a collective we don’t know yet what the resolution will be. It feels like the world and our lives are either on the brink of great disaster or great healing. Our minds and our bodies don’t know which to believe in. We are completely capable of holding both possibilities inside of us. And we keep going back and forth between the two. But there is only one truth. And that truth is love. And we as individuals are right now deciding which result we choose for the whole collective. The place to go when we feel buffeted around by the fear and the pain is into the core truth of who we are. We are each moving the collective with our own individual expression. What is it that you choose to express? Do you want love and peace and freedom for yourself and everyone else, or do you want the world to be lost in fear and violence and greed? You know your choice. And you can feel it pulling you now more than ever. You know that you have a part to play and you are ready to move into your right place to play it full out. And that is what is being born, for each of us. We are being asked to hold what we believe in with grace. We feel everything because everything is asking us to find our way home. If you feel pain, or suffering, or fear, just hold on. Go inside and find the other thing you feel. Connect to all of the goodness and the truth and the love that you know is real. Your life is a perfect reflection of the collective. And you get to move the collective into what you know is the answer for all of us. You get to go inside your body and feel your connection to everything. And you get to choose love. When you hold the stillness of home inside of you, you are giving your greatest gift to the world. You are moving the rest of us into our own stillness, our own expression, our own love. The only way the world will heal is if we do. And we are so, so close to that healing. Let yourself be moved by grace as this year of transformation comes to a close. Let yourself be moved by the greatest love you have access to. Love yourself enough to choose goodness. And open the door for goodness to choose the rest of us.

Present of Presence

“It’s always something.” Have you heard that expression? The people that say it usually mean it’s something bad. What if the opposite were true? What if it was always something and it kept getting better and better? What if we actually are always moving towards the next most beautiful thing? What if believing in the goodness of the world actually created more and more goodness? It is so easy to look around us and see what is wrong. What if we made and kept making the choice to see all of the beauty in life? You know it’s there. You see it in the bare limbs of the oak trees when you’re walking the dog in the morning before work. You see it on your wife’s face as she puzzles over how to get the lid off of the jar of olives. You see it in the kindergartener who runs to hug her grandmother as you sit in your car behind the school bus in the afternoon. What if what you see then, in these precious moments of being awake to beauty, is the something that it always is? What if we are all, at every moment, moving toward that something? And what if that something is so stunning, so loving, so beautiful, so good that we can’t even imagine it at this point in time in our limited minds? The world is always changing. The seasons come and go. The moon weaves through her cycles again and again.  We are at the beginning of a new season. The season when the trees are stark against the sky and we bundle up and move through the world slowly as we gather our strength for the cold. We are in winter, going towards spring. We are always going toward something. It is so easy to believe that we are going towards something hard and devastating and awful. But maybe the opposite is true. Maybe we have reached a turning point in our collective lives, a turning point that leads us toward something wholly, gorgeously magnificent. Give yourself a gift this season. As you walk through your winter days give yourself the time to reflect on the something beautiful that is always present in your life. Give yourself the gift of believing in goodness. It really is a choice we each have. And it might be the most important choice we ever make. It is always something. You can be that something. You can be the something beautiful just by pausing and noticing the pink winter sky at sunset. You can be the something beautiful just by sitting quietly and watching the birds feeding out your window. You can be the something beautiful by playing a board game with your teenager and making him hot chocolate to sip while the snow comes down in your neighborhood. It is always something, and that something is us. It is the way we choose to show up in the world. It is the way we listen quietly to the voice that comes from our hearts. It is the beauty that is all around us that is us. Turn off the news for a night and listen for the stillness of the heartbeat of the world.  The world is going someplace it has never gone before. And it is going there quietly. It is going to a place where everything beautiful that ever was is alive and free to express itself. It is going to a place where goodness brings goodness. You are that goodness. You are that beauty. Give the present of presence to yourself. Embrace the season before us with all the deliciousness it holds.

This article was first printed in Vital Signs in the Daily Progress December 2014

Where we belong

What is it that you belong to? I mean really, really, deep in your bones belonging? With whom, or what, or where do your truest inclinations reside? What ancient pulse do the roots and rivers of your heart respond to? What is the truth inside your rooted mind? It seems to me that the darkest parts of our collective selves are coming to the surface where we can see them. All of our hatred, and our bigotry, our racism, our sexism, our greed, our intolerance, our fear, our apathy, and our anger are coming right out into the bright light of day from where they have long been lingering in the shadows. And it appears that these parts of ourselves have all of the power. These qualities of the human collective are not new to us. And they don’t surprise us. We are as familiar with them and as weary of them as the refrains of an old ongoing argument with our best friend. We are so ready as a whole to move past them. But they are not disappearing from our consciousness quietly and without a fight as we had hoped. They are rising up and pointing to themselves. They are practically shouting. And what they are saying is, “I am NOT love!” That’s all. That’s the truth they need us to hear. They need us to know that they are not love. So they are presenting themselves to us in their full embodiment of the worst of ourselves. And we get to choose what we belong to. We get to finally, once and for all, claim that which we care most about. Kindness. Compassion. Tolerance. Stewardship. Service. And most of all, Love. We get to claim this in our own hearts. We get to step away from the shadows of our own souls and we get to be who it is we really want to be. We get to change the collective. We get to bring the new consciousness fully into the world through our own choices and our own commitments. There is no question about it. We have a long history of intolerance and our darkness has participated in the rampant suffering of the world around us. Those of us who want to create a loving, and just, and sustainable world have long hoped that that part of our collective imprint could be transformed naturally, and without much fuss. But that is not the case. Instead, we are each being called to be our own answer. We are each being called to look at our own shadows. We are each being called to come home to what we belong to.  It might seem like the way to respond to the shouting of the collective shadow is to go into our own darkness, our own fear, our own anger. But that is not what we belong to. We belong to love. And love is what saves us now. You are an instrument of love. And you belong to all of the best of the what we as a species are capable of. It’s time for each of us to play our most beautiful song. It’s time to step into the symphony of the healing of the planet in our right place. The darkness is shouting as loudly as it can. It’s pointing itself out to us not because it has the power, but so that we can transform it. And the way we do that is by coming home to where we belong. And where we belong is and always has been love.

 

It’s our kindness

It’s our kindness that makes us a nation of people who are capable of and willing to create a just, and loving, and sustainable world. It’s our hearts that today either feel broken, or lighter, depending on the beliefs that we most hold onto about what is needed for us to go forward in a better direction. Today we in America are split in half, as we have been for a long time. Some of us are feeling lost and devastated and some of us are feeling like we are finally on the right path. I feel for the hearts of all of us. I feel us trying to do what we think is right. I feel our goodness, and the goodness of the world watching us as we try to speak out loud for what we believe in. And no matter what our political preferences are, I see us  believing that the other half of our country doesn’t know what that is. Now more than ever, all of us can feel inside our cores that somehow we have to come together and listen deeply for what is next. The truth is that there is something fundamentally necessary coming from the hearts of people on both sides of the political field. Each side holds a gift for the world. What has been made clear to us in our hearts in this election like never before is that our current system is not working. There are far too many of us who are lost, and afraid, and not living the lives we want to live. We each have something beautiful and magnificent that we long to express deeply in our lives but so many of us do not know how to have that experience. There is much sadness, and anger, and disillusion, and lack, and apathy, and purposelessness. There are people suffering and there is far too much wrongness in the world for any one of us to feel completely right. What looks to be a division of the American people is actually the beginning of the dismantling of our system that no longer serves us. We have differing beliefs about what that means and what our world is coming to, but we are each faced with a choice. We are faced with the choice of using our voice to stand up for what we believe in. We are faced with the necessary responsibility to take care of our own lives and to live according to the best that we have to offer. We are faced with moving forward based on what the world is like in this moment. We can no longer sit quietly and let ourselves be swept up in complacency. There is a new world being born, and we are the ones giving birth to it. It turns out it is more painful than we expected. But true transformation always is. And no matter who we voted for, that is what we have the seeds for in our hearts today. We have the seeds for the true transformation of our entire world as we have known it. The way we are moving the collective forward into a world that makes sense is with the greatest expression of our own unique brilliance. And our brilliance lives outside of fear and hatred. Our brilliance lives inside our love. Open to what is in your heart today. Your heart knows the answer of what is yours to do to have the world you believe in.

Cast your vote for love

I’ve noticed something big happening in the way the world feels lately. Many of us have, The election is bringing out the full spectrum of who we are. There is so much movement, so much emotion, so much power. To me, it feels like goodness. When I say that to people, they want to believe me, but they feel unsure. All they can often feel at first  is what is on the surface and what is on the surface is turmoil and barely disguised rage. I think most people can’t feel the goodness that is with us because we are so used to tuning into what is wrong. I have spent many hours in these past few years doing nothing but tuning into what is most loving about our world. And the truth that I feel underneath the turmoil is that there is a whole lot of love with us right now. Love is asking us to turn our faces toward her grace. And now is the perfect time to do it.  When we look inside our hearts we each have the capacity to feel what is true. We each have the ability to go deeper and to feel what is calling to us. Most of us are feeling the tug and pull of what is ours to do next week. The pressure is building. It is time to cast our vote. It is time to take a stand for what we believe in. It is time to add our voice to the voices of the others who share our dreams for our country and our world. But the truth is, we have already voted. Our vote has long been cast in the ballot box of the universe. The name we check on the ballot on November 8 is not a new name to us, it is actually the end result of our long-held decision to support the ideals that we cherish. We each have a calling, an instinct, a feeling for what we want this world to become. And really, the qualities of goodness that we are drawn to are the ones we have been voting for all along. Love. Compassion. Beauty. Truth. Empathy. Understanding. Service. Freedom. Belonging. For as long as we can remember, we have been voting with the fabric of our lives. We have been choosing with the heart of our commitments. We have been holding our dreams and our most wondrous visions with the core of who we are. We have never stopped moving toward what we believe in. And we won’t stop now. Who we vote for is a personal decision. But what we believe in is the very thread that ties us all together in our hearts as one. And really, what we believe in has more commonality than the world right now would have us think. We believe in our children. And in helping our neighbors. We believe in a good day’s work and a warm house to come home to. We believe in sharing our gifts with others. And we believe in living a life where our most precious yearnings are fulfilled. We believe in what we love. And what we love is as common to us as our heartbeats. We all have the same commitments, to ourselves, to our families, to the world as we would like it to be. It’s only what we see on the outside that tries to tear us apart. What we see on the outside right now is the worst of ourselves. Our fear and our anger. Our despair and our suffering. Our violence and our pain. The world is pointing its fingers at these parts of ourselves like never before. In this tense environment of separation, we are about to decide as a collective what the future holds for us. We are about to change the trajectory of the next four years and beyond. We are about to choose who and what we stand behind. And that is a beautiful thing. Because we are more than what is on the outside. We have something else inside of us. And on the inside we are a world of so much more. And most of us can feel what is on the inside when we stop to look. On the inside we can find the best of ourselves. Our love and our commitment. Our passion and our purpose. Our kindness and our brilliance. What we can imagine for our world in our best selves is only a fraction of what is truly possible. And now is the time for us to use our voices in our vote like we never have before. Because the world is aching to be made whole. And we are the ones to do it. We need to make the choice of who we vote for on election day from the place of imagining from our best selves. We need to stand up for what we believe in. We need to move towards what we know in our hearts is true. We owe that to ourselves and to each other. We owe that to our children and to the whole world. We need to make official what we have long been voting for. We need to choose love.

We can’t be invisible here

It’s gotten so that in the last couple of weeks I can’t make any decisions about my life that keep me from being seen. I just can’t be invisible anymore. I am not talking about Janet Jackson at Super Bowl halftime on-the-stage, millions-of-people being seen. It’s not really about other people at all. It’s this new commitment I seem to have made with my soul. I just can’t do things anymore that pull me away from the biggest expression of who I am meant to be. I need to be able to see myself in everything I do now. Or it’s just not worth it to me, and as I’ve learned, it is also not of any service to anybody else. My life has whittled its way down to its natural rhythm and it feels fabulous. I spend my days doing only what I can do with my own unique voice. I see myself in what I love to do. When I write, I am seen. When I coach, I am seen. And in between writing and coaching I rest and play. And that seems to be all I am capable of. There must be a message here. Follow what you love has been my mantra for years. And now only what I love seems to be able to follow me into this place that I have arrived at. The rest is all distraction. And who cares about that? My second book, A Rooted Body,  is being born into the world now, or at least into my world, and what else is there to do but trust the birth process as it is? So, tonight, I write. And tomorrow, I write. And some days, I coach. And so on as far as I can see. I speak to you of this newfound incapability to be led off-center by anything as an offering for your own biggest expression. It turns our following what you love does something more than we expected. It not only pulls you along on a boat ride to joy, it also clears away the shackles that would bind you. I can’t say for sure where all of this is leading, but man, the ride is delightful. Anybody can be invisible. But the act of being seen is a uncommon act.