Tuesday, November 30, 2010



I came upon the preceding lyric in a holiday collection CD several years ago, and the song has become a seasonal favorite of mine. I actually use it every evening during Hanukkah, allowing the poetry and gorgeous melody to be the background for my heartful lighting of the lights. While I was not born into the Jewish tradition, it has gifted me with several rituals that have expanded my awareness and deepened my Source sensitivity. Some of the most profound teachers for me in this incarnation are also from the Jewish heritage, and so it is with heart-felt appreciation that I prepare to light the candles of Hanukkah 2010.

We begin the month of December with the Festival of Lights, and end the month and this calendar year with the next to final candle of Kwanzaa. I have long used candles in my personal sacred practice, and have developed a deeper and broader resonance with the symbol not only in times of holiday, but in my day-to-day reverencing. I actually lit a candle before I began to write the words that you are reading now. The act of lighting a candle reminds me that life is sacred, and that the ongoing invitation of a wakeful life is to remember the Light Essence at the core of all there is. As the above song reminds us, “everyone who lights the candles has a bit of ancient spark.” This is of course true for those who never go near a tapered flame. It is true of people from every and from no religious tradition equally, and theology or belief varies not the origin of our Being. Practices are meant to be reminders. There is no inherent power in the lighting of a candle. It doesn’t make anything true that isn’t already true. But the lights of Hanukkah, Christmas, and of the cultural celebration of Kwanzaa are lit to remind us of the ancient spark that literally exists in every cell of our bodies. The practices that lead to expanded awareness turn up the flame of Truth in our energy systems. It is tangible. When we are consciously connected into our Source we can feel Life as it contains us and moves through us. This Light and Life is the animating force of all that is and ever will be. The remembrance of this Living Light gives way to the miraculous first in our hearts, and then in our world. It is the remembrance of Source, of Primal Cause, of the G-awed of many names. Remembering what is Sourcing us profoundly changes us. I am not speaking of a concept. I am pointing to the deep, profound, intimate experience that only total surrender can provide. This is the internal shift that leads to transcendence. It is the One power that allows a day’s worth of temple oil to fuel a flame for seven more. To answer the question within that song, there are indeed miracles today! They are all around us for they are occurring deep within us. Every time we remember Source in the midst of our fears, a miracle occurs. Every time we surrender our control and relax into Soulful cooperation, a miracle occurs. Every time we stop to light a candle and to breathe into prayer, a miracle occurs. When we choose to live lives of active, faithful surrender, we recognize that we are In Sourced for we are IN Source. We then flow with what is, and allow for what seeks to be. We relax our resistance, and align In the Light. We become the Source Light that then shines through the darkness of unconsciousness. With or without a physical candle, our Beingness burns brightly with a Light that keeps on burning.

My prayer this Festival of Lights is that I remain in continual Remembrance of Source Light, and that I maintain an open heart through which that Light may shine. I humbly recognize that I am a miracle, and I celebrate that so are you. May the ancient spark be fanned by these love-inspired words, and may you shine as brightly as you were born to shine.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Appreciation Creation

One of my hero’s in life was once an impoverished little girl in the backwoods of Mississippi who didn’t have indoor plumbing until she was almost a teenager. When she was a little girl, her grandma took her out in the side yard to teach her how to hang the washing on the clothes line, something grandma assured her she would need to know how to do. From somewhere deep inside that little with the funny name, she knew that as much as she loved and respected her precious grandma, she would not be hanging laundry on a clothesline in Mississippi. And indeed, Oprah Winfrey never did. She intuited that she was born for more, and she was somehow going to tap in to that inspiration, and let it guide her to the path she was called to follow. She met many obstacles along the way, hurtles that have stopped other people with perhaps less disadvantages before them. Yet she kept moving forward, and the world is a better place for the contributions this remarkable woman has made. Countless lives have been touched, and she is a wayshower for multiple generations. She transcended boundaries that leave an open way for millions more to follow. And perhaps key to the philosophy that has led to so much achievement is a sense of gratitude and appreciation that seems to have been innate in her from the earliest of years.

One of my favorite Oprah quotes is “If you focus on what you have, you’ll always have more. If you focus on what you don’t have, you’ll never have enough.” We scientifically know that energy always flows where attention goes. Whatever we focus on expands in our experience. I have come to know in my own life that it is not only the WHAT of our focus that is important. Yes, focus energizes. But HOW we focus is the factor that determines what the energizing effect will be. If we look at and thus energize an appearance in our life, believing that it is a solid reality to be fought, we will actually get more of what we are fighting against. The resistance is a strange attractor that assures the continuation of whatever we are fighting. Bringing a heartful Presence to an appearance has a radically different effect. When we can view the world and its appearances through the lens of the spiritual heart, a deeper wisdom is activated and a transformative power is unleashed. Having the intention to see beyond mere appearances graces us with insight and vision. The heart has no need of doing battle, because in the heart is the Knowingness that all things are ultimately in service of the greater whole. The underlying atmosphere within the heart is a deep and abiding appreciation. It is grateful at a level that transcends the mind and its dualistic programming. It beholds life as a sacred emergence that isn’t logical or linear. It doesn’t look for what is missing, for what is in need of fixing, or for what needs to be cast out. The wisdom of the heart takes in the depth and the breadth of a constant spiraling of consciousness being played out in form. It is all for good, even those appearances that trigger our most aberrant reactions. It is all an out picturing of Law, and as we awaken more to the mechanics of creation, we will more skillfully create our world as a reflection of Who we are at the deepest level.

And so at this time of Thanksgiving, we look on not only what we have, but at Who we are In the heart of the Beloved. We focus our heartful attention on that, and it expands in our experience. We Presence and we compassion the tendency to look at what we don’t have, and in that merciful inner atmosphere, we make a different choice. We recognize and we celebrate the physics of our attention, and we consciously utilize a felt-sense appreciation as the energetic of conscious co-creation. Beholding our inner worlds and the outer realms with a Presencing, appreciative embrace has a transformative and powerful effect. We live in a container of thanksgiving and gratitude, and this lens calls forth the goodness and the beauty that are indeed ever-present. We include all of life, and in our choice to fight or reject nothing, it is all used for the highest of our Soulful emergence. And whether we hang laundry on a clothesline in Mississippi, run a billion dollar Media Empire, or lead a quiet and unassuming life of simplicity and service, we will know that our grateful hearts have left a legacy of love for generations to come.

Look at what you have and what you are, and be grateful indeed.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


In a world of instant access and quantum technology, I find myself longing for a deeper level of intimacy and connection that simply isn’t available via the internet or social networks. It seems as though most people are so entranced by today’s myriad forms of instant information that the glare of data is reflected in the deadening stare of mesmerized eyes. Everywhere I go I see couples that are physically together, yet are texting and talking with others and not the least bit present to the one they are actually with. I have witnessed entire tables full of people in restaurants that are completely ensconced in their mobile devices, the only exchanges being a sporadic sharing of something of interest on a screen. While the interconnection of the cosmic mind is being reflected powerfully in our current technology and media outlets, it seems to be also demonstrating for us the limitations of mind-content identification and the deadening effects of that ever active thinking apparatus. How often do you experience the feeling that even when you are in the same space with someone, they really aren’t fully there? Do you also sometimes suspect that when you are having a phone conversation with someone, they are clearly engaged in something else at the same time? Do you notice that there is an increasing vacancy in the eyes of many you are conversing with? Do you ever sense the diminishing depth of intimacy where programming and information is replacing raw honesty and heart connection? Have you ever had the sobering realization that the main culprit in this line of questioning is the one reflected in the mirror? The lens of conditioning is glazing over the reality of true vision. We are looking and we are often not seeing. We are hearing and we are not listening. We are colliding and we are not touching.

There is nothing lonelier than being with someone when they truly are not there. Mind-identification and multi-tasking aren’t benign when they are robbing us of real connection. It seems to me that the unconscious thrust of all this whirling data is to prevent us from feeling the depth of grief of what we have lost so long ago; the True and Real connection to our Source, the depth of our experience of our own Soulful Selves, and the interconnection to the Whole of Creation that has been perceptually severed and forgotten. This is what we most crave. It cannot be replaced by sound bytes and Facebook friends. It cannot be found via 253 Dish channels or the highest of internet speeds. You will not locate Source by texting or palm piloting. And try as we may, we cannot think our way to G-awed.

Intimacy is a quality of attention to attention itself. It is a way of presence that is beyond the mind and intrinsic to the heart. It is behind the conditioning and beyond the programming. It is found not on a screen but in the depths of the eyes of those we are heartfully with. I invite you to look and really see. Listen and really hear. Speak and really say something. The hurt we try so hard not to feel is the call to return. It is the call to return to our self. To return to the direct experience the One Self. It hurts to live inauthentically. It pains us to be out of our integrity. We may suppress that ache, but it will not forever be denied. The perception of separation has tragic consequences in time and space reality, and eternity is even now shaking us to awaken. We can deaden our senses, but we cannot dim the Essence of our Life. Life is intimacy and connection, tenderness and touching. We are in a Unified Field that is ItSelf a loving embrace, and our contraction and withholding from each other is to far out of synch with Truth to be maintained for long. We are by nature the other’s keeper, and the pain of disconnection will eventually bring us home. Religious or political or racial distinctions cannot touch who we are at depth, and it is to the Deep that we are now summoned.

So consider putting down the phone, turning off the TV or computer, and really paying attention to attention. Be intimate with the moment and all that it contains. Feel your own heart. Touch your own tender places. Look deeply within and attend to all that is there. And then give those same gifts to all who enter your sphere. Return to the radiance of intimacy, the splendor of tenderness. Listen, watch, feel life as it moves in and through you, and as it connects you with all that is. Paying attention to attention is loving deeply whatever arises. And loving deeply whatever arises is to live wakefully and intimately within the One.