February 14, 2014

This post is dedicated to the three most important human beings in my life: Four-10-19-Ninety-One, Three-25-19-Ninety-Three & Eleven-13-19-Ninety-Five.  Thank you for showing me, without words…

 Sometimes the language inside of our hearts, is too vast for a single word…

When this is the case, we scramble through our emotions and memories and attempt to pull from within our beings, that deepest place of feeling, striving to convey, in words the experiences of our hearts.  If we are to succeed at accomplishing (and allowing) this great feat, tears will rise from within that Word-less Place inside of us and coat the periphery of our eyes and we will see our world, with extra vision. Without warning we find ourselves surrendering to something much larger than we are prepared for: The capability and enormity of our heart’s capacity to LOVE, is sometimes too frightening to embrace.

When we surrender? We find a powerful release of an oxygenated life force.  Our faces, wet with tears and flushed with emotion—free this feeling of The One Word.  The One Word that expresses and embodies every emotion that matters most in our meager existence here on the great big and now fragile planet.  The contents of our hearts evoke and provoke sentiments that sometimes take-us-by-surprise and we identify this expression with the One Word called:  L O V E.

On this  Fourteenth day of February, each year, we celebrate the sentiments of our hearts, most notably with the idea of romance between lovers. Unbeknownst to some, there is another kind of romance that is equally wonderful and as fulfilling, yet not talked about in the same context:  The LOVE a mother can feel for her children.   There is a LOVE that a mother shares with her children—quietly and privately.  Between the two, LOVE illustrates and illuminates the immensity of what lies in our hearts.  Children come to us from many places and through different channels, yet they arrive, bearing gifts and lessons for us to value and learn from, if we are open to welcome what they have to offer. LOVE is transcendent—in any form and relationship.  It is wordless, except for its exression through poetry.  The LOVE of a mother and child is a power force and bond that can rarely be described, yet it can-change-the-world, because LOVE changes everything. And when we LOVE our children, in essence we LOVE the world, because some day they-will-be-its-Keeper.

*     *     *     *     *

Sometimes I feel like we Sensitive Ones are not taken seriously in the world because we make LOVE our priority.  (Imagine if everyone—did.)  The Dreamers and The Conservatives honoring, LOVE!   In the end it will be what mattered.  In the end, LOVE will be what we had, lost or sadly never knew. If our passion for each day began with: “I LOVE… my man, my woman, my children, my dogs, my career….my—life, we would set a new standard for existence.

*     *     *     *     *

Individually and together,  my life has only been enhanced by my children’s presence, showing me what family is, what LOVE is.  And while I can only speak from the position of a mother, from a biological perspective LOVE is LOVE.  The bond is established whether it is a blood relation or cosmic.

*     *     *     *     *

In my mind’s memory bank, my heart has cataloged millions of snapshots, celluloid and media free, that are too rich and rare to share in any visual context. (so this post shall remain text only.) For aproximately 7,300 days I spent with three amazing, intelligent, creative and loving little beings. I watched in AWE as their little eyelashes grew in over night, fluttering just before they awoke from a dream;  their soft, pliable bones grow strong,  their tiny feet, curled up on the sheets of their crib, and the sounds and coos they made while dreaming–their recognition of their independence from me and their dependence on–my LOVE for them and their eyes, holding that gaze–of trust… 

*     *     *     *     *

No matter the form of media today, nothing will or can ever replace the tangibility of the physical or emotional touch of LOVE.  There will never be a technological replication for: feeling, yet what film and media might be able to do? Technology reminds us of what we are missing and what we need in order to survive that it will never be able to give us–no matter the high definition it tries to seduce us with.

In closing, Conor, Jack, Dylan:  you are incredible human beings that have graced my life with immeasurable and unexplainable value. I am proud to be a part of your life and look forward with great enthusiasm to see, without words the awe inspiring life you shall continue to live with nothing short of a fierce passion.

I LOVE you.

(MOM)

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Jee-zzzzzzz-(Us): Holy-Day 2013

“…and the Grinch with his Grinch feet-ice-cold

in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so?

It comes without ribbons.

It comes without tags.

It comes without packages or bags.

And he puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore.

Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before.

‘What if Christmas’, he thought,

doesn’t come from a store.  What if Christmas means a little bit more.'”

What are we celebrating again?  Every year It comes around, even the Grinch cannot keep It down…It comes, no matter what or whom tries to get in Its way, It arrives—suddenly even if we-try-to-keep-It-at-bay…and our individual beliefs make It a festivity of our wish.  We celebrate It—anyway…

This season, regardless of our histories and traditions, assumptions, prejudices and judgments, some how, something in us finds a way to be more than we are during the other months of the year. 

We hurry.  We fret and fear.  We pause.  We wonder:  What did this year bring? What did we lose?  What did we gain?  Who- have-we-become-in-the-last-twelve-months? This time of year, even in the hustle and bustle of the days, we pause, perhaps privately when no one can catch our glance over our shoulder to see, our individual joy or sadness.  Some of us, if we are lucky, will take the time to ponder what is it about this past year that we wish to bring into the coming New Year and what we would like to let go of.

 My biological history is Catholic, Italian.  My family celebrated the usual holidays:  The birth of Jesus, then the natural arrival of Santa (the two on the same night always confused me as a little girl. I was filled with questions and curiosities.  “Why? How? Where? When—are-you-sure-that- is-how-it-happened?  Really? But…”) As I grew, so did my questions—and doubts.

Christmas and Chanukah.  Actually it is Christmas that has driven the economy and Santa a bit crazy for the last few hundred years, and in more recent years, Chanukah has gotten material notoriety and contributed to the economical boost at this time of year as well.  

We are living in an awe-inspiring time and also—an era of great fear for the wellbeing of our planet and all of its inhabitants: trees, children, animals, seas and the very air we breathe are threatened for the sustaining of life and the planet. All existence is in jeopardy.  We are living in an age, where thought is recognized as things.  We are aware of that thing called “karma” and how our deeds and misdeeds affect our world and the world around us.  Are these “new” trends, phases and beliefs—really new?  Perhaps we just keep cycling old beliefs and traditions, holidays and reword them, reshape their meaning and package and “market” them according to our new age. 

The end of the year post is always my favorite to compose.  It encompasses the past twelve months and with the closing of yet another year, we open to the possibilities (again) for the New Year coming in, with its unfolding uncertainties, past, present and future.

What is the real meaning of Christmas? Who is this Santa Claus and Jesus? Could it be that Jesus was merely a Perpetual Enthusiast and Santa the epitome of Spiritual Goodness? (and if Santa is so good, why not share him with all children?) Could it be that Jesus was so uber positive that He wanted to share the core of His being, that very center that embodies each one of us?  Surely He recognized His inherent goodness that we, as humans is our birthright. (all-of-Us…)  Could His message have been to help us see what He saw in himself, in us? We and He share that  “spark” we feel whenever love is present in our close relationships.  Jesus seemed to feel that with every-One. 

What if Jesus’ message was just a humble and simple Gift to us, whether we are celebrating Chanukah or Christmas:  Don’t suffer. (Forgive.)  Be kind.  Above all else Simply:  Love.

What if Santa is just Jesus’ Understudy?  Will He come back for His standing ovation?  Will he stay away, humbly and ask all of Us, to step into His shoes or Santa’s Boots and make every day of the year a day of celebration—a re-minder of how to be good, simply because we can?

*************************

Centuries pass. Life changes. Traditions too, but there is one constant for the search for truth. 

“In all ten directions of the universe,

there is only one truth.

When we see clearly, the great teachings are the same.

What can ever be lost?  What can be attained?

If we attain something, it was there from the beginning of time.

If we lose something, it is hiding somewhere near us.

Look:  this ball in my pocket:

Can you see how priceless it is?”

Japanese Zen poet, Ryokan

Whether it is Christmas or any other holiday, we are all searching for one divine truth. How that truth manifests within our families, traditions and selves, can be personal and at the same time we can find a universal truth. This is the essence of Holy-Day/holiday and this is the (secret) value we can find in all-of-Our-Days.

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What is True? What is Beautiful? What is Good?

(This Post is dedicated to the memory of Nellie. A woman far before her time. Someone who knew the value of silence and the importance of not uttering unnecessary words. And to her third son, who also knew the same values. They are remembered and their memory is valued…)

* * * * *

What is life without regrets?
(a life well lived.)
What is a life well lived?
(a life sought after.)
What is an Alchemist?
(An Alchemist is a Wizard.)
What is a Wizard?
(A wizard is anyone who is a Seeker.)
What is a Seeker?
(Someone who searches for Real Beauty.)
What is Real Beauty?
(Any-thing Good.)
What is Good?
(All-that-is-True…)

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The Secrets of Life…

are all around us. The answers to questions, we most often, already know, but are too busy to ask. Our minds are so filled with excuses as to why we cannot relax or stop or make the time for what is important, like: look up at the sky, if you live in a city. There is (!) wonder above and in between all the buildings and rushes of people. Magic can (!) happen at a stop light. I have had some of the most memorable exchanges between co-humans while waiting for the light to turn green and then we are so engrossed in our conversation that we wait for the red light to turn green again!

Instead of focusing on getting “ahead” or the bills that we sometimes struggle to pay or getting sucked into the latest media story or current events, try to take a day or two and just step outside of the routine. Go a little slower and you will discover that you actually get a lot more done. The pace that needs to be addressed is internal–that is where all the wonder and good resides. When we make that place our home, we navigate the crazy, busy, external world with greater ease. (best kept secret!) Steady that world and you will discover that time and speed only exist in the world around you and that the calm inside is where the real jewels of life reside. (dig deep and you will sparkle, sparkle, sparkle!)

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To Love…

(this post is dedicated to santiago)

is the same as being loved.  it is the most natural and sacred aspect of being human and the most humane way of being… it is not possible to know one and not the other, because the Other is  always  (y. o. u.)

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The New Coward(s)

Continue reading

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The Leaving…

The Leaving

He is packing his bags

(for his De-part-ure)

He is leaving Some Place

Where he has never lived.

(He’s been there his entire life…)

He does not realize that his bags have

No-thing(s) in them.

Still, he packs them—anyway.

The –same-bags-for-the-same-trips

(every-time)

His/whole/life.

(He has never taken the time to look

inside his suitcases to see how they held no

Content.)

She is packing the same bags too. Hers are filled-over-flowing-

(with things she thinks she can take with her.)

 but she cannot.

She is stuffing in all of her beautiful and costly

(S o r r o w)

She is trying, shoving things deep into the corners of her

V a l e s e—searching

to find

The

(Joy)

so she does not

leave-It-behind.

She cannot recall where she placed It.

(and it is troubling her.)

She-just-doesn’t-know-why.

She cannot find what was never had.

They are leaving, together/behind/memories

That never existed.   Where they are going,

is Un-Clear

(They think they are being practical.)

But this flight has no

Landing Point.

There is no destination because they are not going any

Place Real…

(so when that clock is about to strike  12 and that noon train is approaching around the bend; the tracks are laden with golden bricks, pointing in a Direction and your life is asking you:  Decide, Decide, Decide…what will you do? What will you do? race for the train or the track? 😉 )

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Holy-Days, Holidays & then there is…

Carl Sagan!

“It is far better to grasp the universe as it really is–then to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.”

Whatever holiday you have celebrated this week or are still celebrating, let us all remember that there is a fine line between what is true for us and what is true for the universe.

(trust me:  the universe cannot be fooled…)

The costumes and rituals have their own place as do the beautiful cathedrals and temples. However, lurking behind the clouds during the day and the stars late at night is the true Ring Leader & Magician: The Master of the Macro World.  And we should all count our-lucky-stars too, for we, yes, all-of-us have that same spark of magic to lead and create an enchanting little world inside of us.

When we do?

 We get to bring our micro world (or mini world) out into the macro world and make a masterpiece out of our lives!

Make this holy week and Holy Day  a Michelanglo day! Create! Create! Create! = Masterpiece! Masterpiece! Masterpiece!

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The Practicality of Love

” I caught the happy virus last night
when I was out singing beneath the stars.
It is remarkably contagious–
so kiss me.”
Hafiz

Science holds a theory that Romantic Love has a life span of approximately twelve months and no longer than eighteen months.

When did love become a scientific equation? Perhaps therein lies the error.  What would Rumi think or Hafiz or Dickinson?  Does love have duration?  Sometimes what we think is love is actually a symptom of something completely different.  Twelve months, eighteen months or twenty years might be how long it takes for some of us to realize that what we had was a habit or something careless, inconsiderate, hurtful or simply a matter of lust and we thought it was–something more.  Lust without love is empty and fleeting, no matter how we might try to rationalize it.  Habitual relationships can disguise themselves as romantic until we break–the habit and take some distance to look into what we thought we were feeling.  Perhaps what many people experience as romantic love is actually an attraction to something that is latently familiar and familiarity can be everything except love.

Love is personal and surprising.   It cannot be planned, organized or–learned.  When we least expect it, when we are not paying attention, that is when love happens.  That which scares us, embraces us, wholly and without warning. We want to run toward it and at the same time away from that which has reign over our hearts.  For some romantics the love fever removes even cravings for–chocolate.  The aroma of flowers and their encompassing beauty, pale in comparison–to that whom we now love.

Yet we live in a world of  “possessed” love.  Since love cannot be learned or possessed, what is it that we feel the need to control? And why?

We live in a world of “repressed” love.  since love cannot be suppressed what is it that we are trying to prevent from setting free? (Our raw exposure to our feelings?)  

We live in a world where we fear what we want and need most of all–love.

How is it that the very thing that sustains us could be–feared?

Love frightens us because it-makes-us-feel (everything.)

Flowers and chocolate are easy. (especially today!)
Smell good.
Taste better. (But real love is scary.)

Flowers are pleasing to the senses.
Chocolate is sweet and satisfies us without having –to expose us.
(and we can hide behind it.)
(same with sex.)
 
Sex is less complicated than love because we can escape through the body, where love enters our heart and weaves itself–all-the-way-to-our-mind…
 
Containers are most useful when empty:  cups, caldrons & The Mind.  But the heart is only useful when it is full–of-giving.  Overflowing–with love.

Our heart is vulnerable and porous.  (when opened)

(It is also practical–we see this in The End. In the end we see: Only Love Mattered.)

Our mind is “reliable”pro-tec-tive…and it is costly too. 

(Especially to our heart.)

Our mind is the greatest escape and the most reliable stealer of truth.

Do we really want to lie to ourselves?

(Don’t listen to your mind–especially on Valentine’s Day.

Listen to your mind, only when (your-heart-tells-you-to.)

 

 

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The (Post) Holiday Season

The Season always seems to arrive and depart as a surprise to many of us.  “Where did this year go?” We often hear, but don’t we hear this–every year!?

I wonder:  If our lives slowed down (just a bit) every day, perhaps we would say something different when this time of year rolls around. Maybe we would no longer think or feel, “time flies”, instead we would say, “what time is it anyway?” and we would respond with a resounding, “—oh yeah, it is Now!”

Now is the only time we will ever be able to experience and even then it is so fleeting and illusory that as we try to hold on to it, it too will slip through the very fingers that try to grasp the un-graspable. We are living in an age where we are beginning to appreciate how, now, is the only time that is real.  When we are aware of the transiency of time then we can see that we have a choice in what we do with some of our “now time”.  We can laugh and be happy knowing that we have a choice in the extent of the absurdity in how crazy-busy we allow our lives to get! In fact, we-can-choose to slow down.  We can pause and revel (naturally) in right now. Yet for some of us, while we live in a “free country”, we do not feel we have any command over our day, our time or any amount of real authority over the relationships we willingly participate in; thus our lives.  It is as if our lives are as unpredictable as the weather and that Who We Are is reminiscent of Global Warming—we never know who or what to expect each day, separate from our route routines.  Our lives, and the busy-ness of them become a whirlwind of this festive season as It wraps us up into this endless state of Celebratory Chaos.

Instead of feeling as though we are being dragged and looped around into oblivion by some natural disaster, with a different perspective on our lives we can better navigate some aspects of it, to a degree.

This time of year reminds us that we can still lasso our lives and change what is not making us happy.  Yet year after festive year, many of us resist change;(makes us uncomfortable.)  Fear of change keeps many of us hostage, cocooned caterpillars only dreaming of a colorful, winged life! (Dreaming-of-a-colorful-winged-life…) While the possibility of growth is alluring for some, needing to change our ways has little if any real appeal. The smart caterpillars soon realize that without change, suffocation ensues (and all the brave, little caterpillars fight, with all their might—for Flight!)

Every year, at this post holiday time of year, it is fair to say that some of us look into what is moving our lives in an upward/forward and positive direction.  Post holiday is also when we reflect on what and all that is dragging us into that dark, unexplainable, repetitive Vortex of The Every Day Stagnation of our lives… When the Vortex is not a happy place of upward motion, modifications to our world can happen, and bring to us a brighter place of Now.  However, when we resist the necessary changes in our lives to propel us to that joy, it is usually due to the physical and intellectual inertia and fear of the necessary transition for growth.  (When we do not resist what we know needs shifting, the river of our life is a steady, more pleasant flow, rather than a tumultuous current.)

Each one of us knows, intrinsically, what prevents our Joy every day and when we settle and accept that which hinders our happiness, we feel the sadness in our hearts. We feel how we are literally blocking ourselves from living a happy existence. (and a happy existence is what we are meant to have!)  When we resist–the natural movement of life—life will eventually force us into altercation with ourselves, thus inevitable alterations within our lives will occur—sometimes when we least expect it. These altercations I have seen every so often with myself. I used to “look the other way”, when just the thought of change exhausted me, until I saw how the cycle of life is forward movement. I learned, rather harsh lessons whenever I did not move with the natural current of my life.  The unpleasant Vortex of my every-day stagnant routine, would hurl me up like a tsunami and my world and I could not resist its unraveling.  Eventually I got the hint and would heed The Calling, “Hey You, this segment of your life is not benefiting you, you need to do something about it…now!” And so I’d let go of the trying to demand certain aspects of my life-to-go-the-unnatural-way-of-resistance, when I knew that resistance of any kind was not necessarily “the best way”.  I learned, through exhaustion, that surrender was the same as “the path with least resistance” and that path was the most natural.  We need to know what to hold on to, what to let go of (and whom) and then understand what things and events in our lives that are within our control.  When we understand this balancing act and are able to implement its teachings into a system that creates happiness, then –Life becomes a state of Flow rather than the unnatural Vortex of Resistance so many of us stay stuck in.

This is a significant time of year.  It is when we feel our most deeply–if we take the time to recognize how and if we feel at all.  (Wished for Aha Moments are summoned here!)

It is the time of year when we are our busiest and at the same time we throw ourselves with abandon into the routine of lights, sales, gift-wrapping, and the Memory-Telling-of-the-stories-of-our-lives.

It is the time of year where we Let Go of what we know we cannot cling to in the coming New Year:  Loved ones who have passed on; relationships that are more of a bad habit than they are lovingly reciprocal.  We toss out the old and bring in the new from our closets to our attics—to-our-loves.

This is the time of year when we might think:  Are we truly happy?  Even the Dali Lama had to prove that happiness has scientific benefits! (Do we always need science, statistics and media coverage to know what truths lie in all of our hearts and bodies?)

Could Christmas time and the New Year, bring out in us what we miss, what we love, what we still want, what-we-still-dare-to-dream? What-we-are-grateful-for? What meaning our life has or has not?  Could all the lights and fanfare and folly of-this-Season really be nudging us to take-a-closer-look at what and all that is important in our lives–the sub-tle-ties and memories that haunt and adorn the Christmas trees?

At this time of year isn’t a resounding p a u s e in order?

It is a time when we hide Who We Truly Are and wish for that Some One Special to Un-Wrap all of us–expose us to ourselves and to them. (perhaps even to everyone.)

This is a time of year for hope and happiness and wish-ing for those we loved who have now gone, (to-come-back) just for the holidays, just for their gift of presence in our lives.

(one-last-time?)

This is the time of year—we can all make a Special-Time

(All-Year-Round).

We can make all of our time, the time for remembering; for caring; for loving–for being; for giving and for, forgiving-of ourselves and of others.

This is A Time to RememberNow…

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