Tag Archives: Basic Goodness

Wishcasting Wednesday

What do you wish to believe in?

JamieBelieve

from jamie’s post

I wish to believe in the reality of change, impermanence, no ground or center that will hold, no safe place. I cause myself so much suffering clinging to these ideas, chasing after them.

I wish to believe in this, “The bad news is you’re falling through the air, nothing to hang on to, no parachute. The good news is there’s no ground.” ~Chögyam Trungpa

I wish to believe in my inherent worth, my basic goodness, my fundamental wisdom and compassion and strength. I cause myself so much suffering through self-doubt, lack of confidence.

I wish to believe in the value of rest, of doing nothing, of giving nothing, the possibility of health and wellness.

I wish to believe in the possibility freedom, complete and utter freedom. Simplicity, space, ease, surrender, clarity, openness.

I wish to believe in my intuition, about my mission and my work, to have confidence that what I dream of will manifest, it will all work out, so I can relax into the experience, being in this moment, concentrating on doing one thing at a time, giving it my full attention.

I wish to believe in my value, to stop chasing after something “out there,” external validation and things, stuff and nonsense, and know that everything I need or want, I already have.

cdj

Illuminate Your Heart Whispers: 30 Days of Love Prompts

illuminate-class-photo

One of my kind and gentle readers has put together something special, and invited me to be a part of it (and you!). Joy, of Facets of Joy, has put together a 30-day ecourse, called Illuminate Your Heart Whispers: 30 Days of Love Prompts. She explains it this way,

You will receive one love prompt per day; “a dare”–a message that invites mind to consider, and heart to open to, depth in familiar and/or contemplation of something new and unfamiliar. The intention is that as you contemplate the meaning and absorb the feeling of each message, you will be inspired to gently stretch (or boldly leap! *grin*). Each message is written by a different author–people who reflect infinite possibility, fiery spirit, bold love, pure joy. Perhaps you will discover a new voice that resonates (perhaps it will be your own!), a practice that enlivens, connections that enrich as they affirm and amplify your current beliefs and practices. Perhaps you will experience a depth and range of love beyond that which you currently know. Perhaps love will move you, when you choose to collaborate with it.

Like I always say, the answer to every question is love, and there can always be more love.

There’s an amazing list of collaborators and free gifts, and if you register today, you get the course for a discounted rate of $24! See you there? ♥

Three Truths and One Wish

1. Truth: Ease isn’t just for special occasions. It isn’t just for when I am resting or celebrating, when all the work is done or I am on vacation. There doesn’t have to be a desperate need or national holiday. I don’t need special permission or free time. I don’t need to earn it. Ease can be how I move through the day, through my entire life if I choose–content, satisfied, free, calm, spacious, sane and awake.

2. Truth: Keeping an open heart is difficult, which is why I train to steady my mind. Having an open and porous heart, I am extra sensitive to noises, light, movement, smells, energy and emotions, and the general chaos of an environment which includes other beings and all their stuff and nonsense. I am vulnerable. I can easily get overwhelmed, which can lead to panic, depression, and other states of dis-ease.

Keeping my heart open is brave and dangerous work. As Ram Deev said in a recent blog post, “Your heart wants you to grow, to be challenged, to face difficulties that seem insurmountable. It wants to nudge you closer and closer to the edge of oblivion.” And yet, instead of hiding, running away, resisting, or denying reality, I have made the conscious choice to keep my heart open, to let it all in, to allow it to touch me, to break me even.

I hold myself steady with the help of various practices, primarily yoga, meditation, writing, self-care, walking my dogs, and loving-kindness. I do all this because an open heart allows for a life of kindness, curiosity, freedom, and joy, along with what it knows best: love, deep and enduring, unshakable.

3. Truth: I am like the sky. I am not the clouds or the weather. I am not the birds or a plane or balloons. I am not the moon or the sun. I am the clear blue spacious openness, underneath and above all other phenomenon. My basic goodness, my innate sanity is unchanged by thoughts or emotions, unaltered by the weather.

We already have everything we need. There is no need for self-improvement. All these trips that we lay on ourselves—the heavy-duty fearing that we’re bad and hoping that we’re good, the identities that we so dearly cling to, the rage, the jealousy and the addictions of all kinds—never touch our basic wealth. They are like clouds that temporarily block the sun. But all the time our warmth and brilliance are right here. This is who we really are. We are one blink of an eye away from being fully awake. ~Pema Chödrön

One Wish: That as each of us walk our path, face our own obstacles and struggles, we can so so with ease and maintain an open heart, and trust that we are basically good and sane, as spacious and clear as the vast blue sky.

Three Truths and One Wish

1. Truth: Being highly sensitive is both a blessing and a curse. I was born completely porous, raw and naked and open wide. I had no defense, no barrier between myself and the world, myself and others. What you felt, I felt, and I felt it deeply. For years, I wore heavy armor (invisible yes, but heavy and hard nonetheless) and masks, cocooned myself, padded my body with extra weight, distracted with smoke and mirrors, hid myself away, anything I could to do to protect myself.

What I didn’t understand yet is that this sensitivity, this keen emotion, acute intuition, deep knowing, this tenderness was something that others spent their lives trying to achieve, that there were many ancient practices to teach one to be so openhearted, so present, spacious and awake. I had what others wanted, what they worked so hard to experience. I have slowly allowed my gentle self to peek out, have been working with being vulnerable and brave, keeping my heart open, but it’s so hard sometimes–the beauty and the brutality, the tenderness and the terror can be so overwhelming.

2. Truth: “You should put on your own oxygen mask before attempting to help someone else with theirs.” I was chanting this silently last night as I tried to fall asleep. My worrying about Dexter wasn’t letting me rest, mind or body, and I was exhausted. That phrase was the thing that kept coming back to me, the only thing that was helping. No “he’s fine” or “everything’s going to be okay” or general allowing or accepting of reality or releasing of attachment would work, but the awareness that I needed to take care of myself or I wouldn’t be of any help to him did.

3. Truth: I can’t control everything, and perfection is impossible. I know this, deep down know it, and yet I keep acting as if it’s not true. I keep Dexter home from hiking, thinking I can keep him safe, and he hurts himself chasing after a squirrel in our backyard. I feed my dogs the best possible food, provide the best health care, give them tons of exercise and affection, take better care of them sometimes than I do myself, and still two of them have been diagnosed with fatal cancers. I obsess about Dexter’s physical therapy and medications and various appointments, thinking I can fix him, keep him safe, when no matter what I do, he will eventually die, as all mortal things do. I try to be so careful and prepared and diligent and alert, but bad things still happen. Things break, feelings get hurt, mistakes are made. I am not always responsible, and even when I am, I am forgivable, still loveable. I am trying to do as Karen Salmansoh suggests and, “Let go of what you can’t control. Channel all that energy into living fully in the now.”

One Wish: That we can approach our experience, our struggle and suffering, with great gentleness and a loving presence. That when we despair, are afraid and sad, we can experience some ease, remember our innate strength, have confidence and find comfort in our fundamental wisdom and compassion. And as Hafiz says, “I wish I could show you when you are lonely or in the darkness, the astonishing light of your own being.”

#Reverb12: Day 7

reverb12

There’s one prompt from today’s group that I feel like even if I haven’t answered it directly, I’ve answered around it, so close to it, making lists of the highlights of my year, talking about what I didn’t want to forget, that I don’t feel like doing it again. It’s this: “7 Minutes: Imagine you will completely lose your memory of 2012 in 7 minutes. Set an alarm for 7 minutes and capture the things you most want to remember about 2012. (Author: Patty Digh, with an extra 2 minutes from me [the Linar Studio]!)”

What’s the one thing you want to take with you into 2013?

This prompt is from Kat at I Saw You Dancing. Her summary of this first week of Reverb 12, her own answers to the prompts she’s been offering, the event she’s hosting, is really beautiful. You should read it if you get the chance.

The one thing I want to take with me into 2013 is my open heart. After so many years of keeping it locked up tight, trying to protect it from harm, I had it broken open, twice in a row. First I lost my Obi, and six months later, my friend Kelly. It was a painful and stark reminder of impermanence, that there are no guarantees, that I didn’t have time to waste. I decided to honor their loss, their lives by finally, really and fully living mine.

I had been sleepwalking, hiding, suffering, faking my way through my days, through my whole life, confused and afraid. That hurt, the loss, those traumas woke me up. The process started three years ago, but it wasn’t really until this year that I adopted the change as a way of being, determined that I was never going back. I don’t want to go back into my cocoon. I used to believe that it kept me safe, but it was a stinky, cluttered, lonely mess of a place.

Giving

The full prompt is: “The purpose of life is to discover your gift. The meaning of life is to give your gift away.” (David Viscott) What is your gift to give?

First of all, this reveals the origins of the quote on the picture I shared the other day. Someone had posted it on Facebook, and I loved it so much, I had to make something with it, but I had trouble finding who to attribute the quote to, (a few places even credited Pablo Picasso), so in the end I didn’t. Now we know: David Viscott.

mypurposeMy gift is reminding people of their basic nature–awake, wise, and compassionate–and encouraging them to embody it. Reality, the world, all of it is workable. Anything that needs fixing, anyone who needs help, we can be the someone to do so (even if the life we are saving is our own), we have the power, the means to make things better, to ease suffering in the world. We will struggle, but we are not alone, we are not lost. No matter where we are, no matter how bad things have gotten, we can start again.

I won’t sugar coat it, don’t pretend that nothing is sad or broken or irritating or upsetting or difficult. I’m not lying, or making up a story with a happy ending to make it easier to fall asleep. Hope is just as problematic as fear. I am sharing what is real and true: life is beautiful and brutal, tender and terrible. As Pema Chödrön says, “None of us is okay and all of us are fine.”

I encourage and inspire people to keep their hearts open. No matter how much it hurts, or how hard, we have to show up, soften to what is, stay in our seats, in our bodies, on our path. There is joy to be found, love to be given. Even in the worst moments, we can take a breath, experience freedom, offer kindness and feel at ease.

Feast

The full prompt: Hopefully you’ve had more than one spectacular meal in 2012, but what is the first that comes to mind? Were you surrounded by family at the dining room table? Sitting on a bench by the lake? Bring us there.

The feast I experienced this year was a month of eating while we were in Waldport, Oregon. Fresh seafood. Marionberries, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, lettuce, cucumbers, and carrots from the Farmer’s Market.

farmersmarkethaulMaple bars, Bear Claws stuffed with marionberry filling (*swoon*), cookies, and other luscious goodies from the Depoe Baykery. It was a really, really good thing we were walking so many miles on the beach every day.

depoebaykeryMy mom and aunt visited for a few days, and we ate very well. The full breakfast, spaghetti dinner, and venison stew were some of my favorites. At dinner one night with a group of my aunts and uncles, we were all stuffed from pasta, so full we could barely eat another bite but there was strawberry shortcake, so we were making the best of it, and at the same time, we were talking about food, other meals we remembered, special recipes (my grandma’s orange marmalade was referenced). I looked around the table with love and said “You know how I know y’all are my people? We are all stuffed, but still managing to eat dessert, and at the same time, we are still talking about food.”

Wishcasting Wednesday

from Jamie’s post

What Peace Do You Wish For?

The peace of accepting, loving, being who I am. No more pushing or improving or rejecting or denying or hiding or smashing myself to bits, but rather radical self-acceptance as Tara Brach describes it, “the willingness to experience ourselves and our lives as it is.”

To have the peace of confidence the way Susan Piver describes it, “the willingness to be as ridiculous, luminous, intelligent, and kind as you really are, without embarrassment.”

The peace of knowing, as Patti Digh describes at the end of this video conversation with Susan Piver, that what I once thought of as my brokenness is actually my superpower.

The peace of my innate worth, my fundamental nature as Pema Chödrön describes it,

We already have everything we need. There is no need for self-improvement. All these trips that we lay on ourselves—the heavy-duty fearing that we’re bad and hoping that we’re good, the identities that we so dearly cling to, the rage, the jealousy and the addictions of all kinds—never touch our basic wealth. They are like clouds that temporarily block the sun. But all the time our warmth and brilliance are right here. This is who we really are. We are one blink of an eye away from being fully awake.

The peaceful awareness that I am meant to shine, as Marianne Williamson explains,

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

I wish for the peace of showing up as I am with my heart open, even when it’s hard and it hurts, the contentment and clarity of embodying the openness, intelligence, and warmth that is my basic nature. While I wish this for myself, know that it would bring peace to my heart and to my life, I also wish it for others, so that this peace would manifest in the world, that our comfort and courage, our collective awareness and mindfulness, would ease suffering in the world.

One of my favorite hymns in church as a kid had these lyrics, “Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.” This is my wish.

Three Truths and One Wish

heart-shaped petal with a heart-shaped hole

1. Truth: the work of my heart is gentle, quiet and simple yet fierce. Spreading love and kindness, cultivating courage and joy, generating a sense of wonder and gratitude, allowing for play and rest, offering encouragement and inspiration, creating safe and open space where natural wakefulness can manifest, showing up with an open heart even when it’s hard and even when it hurts–easing suffering feels like my true calling.

2. Truth: the work of my heart may never be directly paid in dollars. I’m okay with that. It doesn’t need to pay my bills. I will get paid in understanding and awareness, connection and compassion, love and gratitude, joy and tender-hearted sadness. I will see and be seen. I will notice what longs to be noticed. I will be amazed and tell about it. I will be awake and alive, with my heart wide open. In this way, I will be wealthy, will have everything I need, more than enough.

3. Truth: the work of my heart softens me, scares me, makes me tender as it terrifies me. Sometimes it feels too big, too much, too hard, overwhelming, and I shut down, numb out or hide or run away, attempt to deny it, to escape. And yet, when I resist it, I suffer. I try to remember what Katherine Center said, that “you have to be brave with your life so that others can be brave with theirs.” I try to remember that this is what life is, both beautiful and brutal, and that to open my heart and experience all of it, pleasure and pain, is why I am here.

One wish: There is an aspiration, a mantra, a chant that Susan Piver has shared that I’d like to offer here as my one wish today, that we all know this to be true, practice it, embody it:

I possess basic goodness.
All beings possess such goodness.
Knowing this, my heart opens.
When my heart is open, the whole world changes.

P.S. Basic goodness is our fundamental, inherent, natural condition–awake, wise, and compassionate. “Our most basic qualities (those we were born with) are openness, intelligence, and warmth,” (Susan Piver, from her post You are Good).