Tuesday, January 28, 2014


I was parented and disciplined largely by “the look.”

If you were too you will know what I mean. If you are one of the rare exceptions no amount of description will let you in on the experience.

The look was always enough. Piercing, intense, unwavering, the look would stop me in my tracks more than any words, promised punishment or withheld privileges. If I was pushing the boundary of acceptable behavior, the look was all that was necessary to put me in my place. I melted.

It has been decades since I have been of an age where literal outer discipline has been enforced. And yet I still find myself at times buckling under the energetic frequency of the look. Projections of the look can still at times stop me in my tracks and melt me in the moment. Intellectually knowing that it is a projection does not stop the experience from happening, though it does lessen the duration of the impact. Realizing where this imprint came from and who the originating eyes belonged to has also not stopped the look from occurring. And so I know there must be additional blessings to be had from occasionally finding myself in a scrutinizing stare.

I have lived much of my life experience within the intensity of my own critical evaluation. I have spent a vast amount of time living within the look, and I have come to realize that the eyes now belong to me and only me. Though my childhood emotional imprinting includes the grief, fear, and shame that were triggered by the intensity of the look, my liberation is in how I come to relate to those feelings in the here and now.

An enormous factor in the overall quality of our lives is the quality of our own attention. Twenty-plus years of counseling others has confirmed my own experience that living life in a critical, condemning, punitive look is common among those here in the western world. Self opinion and evaluation is crucial to keeping the ego thought system in authority. Theology has been pitifully effective at amplifying this sense of living within a scrutinizing stare. There is a largely unconscious sense that some Outer God is looking down both literally and figuratively. We then create spiritual systems that seek to compensate for this damning lens. We so often stay and hide in our heads to avoid the enduring pain within our hearts; the pain that comes from thinking that we are judged by our very Source. Parental images of the Creator often contribute to this sense of being watched and found wanting.

If we do indeed live now within a Look it is not one of criticism, judgment, scrutiny, and condemnation. I have come to know experientially that though I still can sometimes fall into the trance of the look I am always living within a Loving Gaze that surrounds me in unconditional Wisdom, Compassion, Mercy, Guidance, and a Love far greater than the mind can perceive. I live much of my life experience now in the felt-sense glow of that Vision. My heart soars as I realize that I am living within the literal look of Love. If I find myself within the emotional feel of the evaluative stare, I step back behind that look and align in the Vision that sees the totality of who I am, and never judges what It sees. Life flourishes when we begin to live in an affirmative gaze. That look then informs our own focus, and we begin to see a self and a world alive in love. And so I practice now re-parenting myself with that Look. It melts me in a radically different way. It melts away my own habitual scrutiny and self aversion, and entrains me with a Higher, Broader, Truer vision of who and what I am.

As is so brilliantly stated in the motion picture Avatar, I see you. I feel like the Universe is always whispering that to us, “I see you. I see all of you, and I love you as you are. Live within my Loving gaze, and unfold easily in the Light of my look. Surrender your needless scrutiny, and live in my Look of Unconditional Love.”

And that is a Look that is 20/20 Vision for sure.


Tuesday, January 14, 2014


During the beginning weeks of any New Year my inbox is flooded with invitations to programs and workshops’ offering to give me access to what is often called “the life of my dreams.” Sincere and truly gifted teachers are peddling multiple formulas to help people get what they want in the newly minted year. I in no way wish to minimize or denigrate these offers, though it is rare at this point in my life that one would appeal to me. I am all about celebrating anything that will awaken the sleeping magnificence in people, setting them on a course that will light them up and let them shine. There are few things more painful than enduring a lifetime of minimized self worth and unrealized dreams. Dreams and visions are integral to our spiritual unfoldment. They are central to the way in which the evolution of the Soul occurs. While I am clear that I have learned just as much from dashed dreams as I have from actualized visions, it is in the transcendence of the obstacles that arise around dream manifestation that we grow and spiritually emerge.

As I look back on my life journey I see a child and a youth that had a lot of big dreams and visions for how my life was going to unfold. I saw a life of success, fame, and wealth. I was going to go to Broadway, and they were going to hand me the keys to the theatre district. As much as I would be enjoying my Broadway success I would feel compelled to answer the call to Hollywood and to film stardom, work that I would squeeze in between my wildly popular recording and concert work. My dream was to be the first male to win a Tony, Grammy, Emmy, and Oscar award. I took what was a huge leap of faith to venture forth alone in New York City, and while I enjoyed some success in the entertainment industry, no one was waiting for me with the keys to the city. I didn’t win the big four awards. I was never even nominated for one of them.

Do I grieve the death of those dreams? I did for a time. I gave them an appropriate amount of loving attention, and as I did I discovered something quite miraculous. They never really were the dreams of my deepest heart. They were mentally manufactured ways that I thought would lead me to getting the affirmation and accolades I so desperately wanted and believed I never got. As I deepened into the loss I came to the compassionate knowing that while I did possess a degree of talent in terms of singing, dancing, and acting, I did not have the drive it takes to make it in such an extremely competitive industry. And the reason I didn’t have the drive was because it really wasn’t my dream.

While I thought I went to New York to become a star I was actually being led there to have my entire world turned upside down, emptied, and refilled so that my authentic expression could be activated. It was not a material success that was being initiated but a spiritual one. I went there not to have lights shine upon me but to learn to allow the Light to shine through me. I got to have enough of a taste of the business to know that it really wasn’t for me. I was clear that if I put the time, energy, recourse, and drive into becoming somebody then I would have to maintain that stature. I would spend my life striving to stay relevant, and that was not in alignment with my deeper values. I was clear that what once seemed a life of my dreams would lead me to an ongoing cycle of nightmares.

Today I celebrate the realization that it is service and not stardom that I was destined for. While I appreciated and still appreciate the talents and gifts I have been given it is the way in which they are expressed that gave me pause. It was the content of what was being expressed. As much as I loved playing juicy roles on stage they eventually felt hollow and unfulfilling. To not express the deeper truths that my Soul wanted to give voice to left me feeling inauthentic and under expressed. While it was the desire to get out of myself that originally led me to the stage it was the desire to come back to my self that led me to seminary. I am truly at home now in front of audiences delivering not a script but a transcendence Truth. I get to express my deepest heart and my greatest love. I get to come from Presence and not from pretense. I have the rare gift of having in alignment the depth of who I am with what I do in the world. That is better than any slew of awards and fleeting fame and success.

And now I truly am living the life of my dreams. And it gives me great joy to inspire and to help awaken others in living their own greatest expression. It may not be what you think it is. It may not be what it once was. But when you tap into it, you will know an inner bliss that will always give you the power and energy to activate and to fulfill the dreams and visions flowing through you. Ask to be shown. No matter how old you are or how many dreams have died, ask to be shown what the Universe is seeking to express as you. And then give yourself fully to it. Let it breathe you, live you, shine forth through you. And in that shining, you too will live the life of your dreams.


Tuesday, January 7, 2014


I have begun the New Year in a very unconventional way; by spilling and breaking things.

I haven’t done so intentionally. My intention for 2014 is to fully embody Truth and to live and to serve life from that actualized inner space. Those preceding words are an attempt to verbalize what is far beyond the limitations of words. It is also a compacted version of a very personal commitment that makes it fit for public consumption and for these purposes.

So as I felt and responded to the depth of what Life is seeking to demonstrate through me during the coming year I decided to celebrate with a health drink concoction rich with acai berry concentrate, tart cherry juice, cranberry juice, protein powder, and some assorted fruit for good measure. Then after making it I promptly spilled it on the dining room table which was covered at the time with a white lace cloth. Hmm. And this was New Years Day.

The next evening after enjoying leftovers from my favorite traditional New Years feast I preceded to knock my plate off of the kitchen counter and watch as it shattered into a ceramic, food laced mess upon the floor. I might mention that this is the first dish broken from a set I obtained in 1993. And hmm again…

Now I am not the type of metaphysician who is compelled to force a mental meaning on everything that happens to and around me. And I am an ever curious and intense observer of life that recognizes when my Soul is delivering a message to my sometimes obtuse personality self.

Embodying and actualizing Truth is an often messy and uncomfortable thing. Anyone familiar with my teachings has heard me say this before. This is not to make it so. Yes, I recognize that trap in misinterpretation. I say it because I wish someone had let me in on that secret sooner. When you dedicate yourself to living in and from a spiritual paradigm things get spilled and things get broken. Parts of the personality need to die and aspects of the Soul relentlessly seek to be born. It is not a journey for the timid or faint hearted. We are called to finally spill all the illusions we have clung so desperately to. We are beckoned to break down the walls we have hidden behind; erroneously believing they have kept us safe. We must drop our defenses and surrender our self images. We must give up our addiction to comfort and release the demand for instant gratification. It is not for me a surface perfect picture that I am seeking. I want the whole thing. I want my whole self. I want to know my Source in such a way that allows It to Shine through me. I am committed to allowing Life to break me open in order to set me free. I gratefully surrender my need for comfort and order and control. As if I ever had it anyway.

As I started my year with breakage and spillage my husband Donald was right there both times, patiently helping me to clean up the messes I had made. Life is like that too. Life has always been there for me. Help has always been there. I haven’t always recognized it or allowed myself to be assisted. But I know that there are angels and guides all around me. There job isn’isn't always about making sure things don’t get broken or spilled. There job is to be right there guiding, supporting, compassioning, and loving me amidst the messes. That is the most confounding thing of all. The Divine is always there, right in the middle of the mess. If we never spill or break we miss that beautiful recognition.

And so I mindfully place glasses and dishes in there proper places and I am strangely comforted to know that other things will eventually spill and break. Things within me are in a radical state of change so chaos is part of the plan. I trust in that. I trust that my moments of discomfort and confusion are in service of something far greater than what appears to be happening. I am placing my faith in that. And in a Universe that is always available to help me clean up the mess.