Tag Archives: metaphysics

Drive Through the Night

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I remember once driving through the night. Honestly dear reader, I wasn’t just driving, I was escaping. I had everything I owned crammed into a Ryder Truck, my Acura in tow, my two year old son and mother beside me. I drove and I drove until the lights of Phoenix were far behind me. There comes a time for all of us when we have to take big steps toward freedom. Sometimes I think all I’ve done is taken big steps. At this point in the game, I’m an Olympian Pole Vaulter. But please know this, I wouldn’t change a thing.

We are all on a journey. Baby steps are just as valuable as pole vaulting. Actually, you can’t do one without having first done the other. So if you are finding yourself having to take big steps or baby steps to start something new, know that you are not alone. The one’s who don’t take those steps are those that will, most likely, be tasked with the same struggles throughout their life or perhaps in a different life. As for me, I try to stop the bad cycles when I recognize them.

One of the biggest cycles we all face is in learning to let go. Often, this means letting go of a relationship. Life is about relationships. We live an existence that is in relationship to what’s around us. Letting go of a steady paycheck can be devastating. Letting go of a much loved home is brutal. Letting go of someone you love is near crippling. Yet, there comes a time, when that is exactly what we are faced with doing. We must shift our direction, lift the energy, and in doing so, allow in something new.

And we know when its time, don’t we? In our core we know. From there, we usually fight it. I will say this, it does get easier. But I’ll also say that it never truly gets easy. Then again, I’m a tender heart. I feel things others don’t. Having said that, if I can do it, so can you.

Its okay if you notice you’re stuck. Its okay if you notice that those surrounding you don’t respect you. Its okay to realize that you took a few wrong turns along the way. Don’t judge yourself. Instead of viewing it as a set back, look at it as another step toward perfecting peacefulness. We almost never know what peace feels like until we are surrounded by the absence of it.

Its okay to take a stand. In fact, the best thing you can do for yourself is to fortify yourself with grace, look at yourself with Love and treat yourself accordingly. Often this means letting go of a few people, a few situations, a few habits. Every day is a new day to drive through the night toward making things right.

I’ve driven through the night both metaphorically and physically. Either way, it was filled with an indescribable ache, as well as an indescribable sense of freedom. With grace, let go of those things that no longer serve you. With a blessing, let go of friendships that have went beyond their season. And with a special prayer, release those mismatched loves. Both of you deserve something better.

I remember one night saying goodbye to someone that to this day I still love. As I sat in my Jeep, I felt the death. But I also felt the birth of hope for something better. Since then I’ve let go of people, places and things. It must be where I am in my journey. And I’m doing my best to move forward without too tight of a hold on anything. No map. Just my senses tuned to my core and the stars above. Now, if you’re needing to let go, do so with an open heart. Take a moment to look up and into the night sky. Breathe. Trust the Universe. It won’t let you down. Its time to shake it off and start again. Something better awaits. But it begins with you.

Sane

What Do You Believe

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What do you believe? It’s an important question to ask yourself. Because whether you are aware of it or not, your beliefs determine much of your journey.

I remember one time, sitting with my mother. I had recently given her a powerful book to read. The book had within it many spiritual truths. Underpinnings as to our power, and how it controls much of our life. It spoke of the importance of, not just our words, not just our thoughts – but our beliefs. The thought behind the thought. My mother closed the book, handed it back to me and said, “Well, the hell with that.”

I’ve always appreciated my mother’s straightforwardness. Even when what she was saying was something I didn’t want to hear. My mother instantly knew that she was not the master of her beliefs. More so, she knew her deepest beliefs were not ones of a positive nature. The fears within her had become her beliefs. It’s like that for many of us. But never underestimate the contrast and challenges Life brings before you. Because each one offers a chance to confront one’s beliefs, and either walk forward in them or to see them for what they are; to see how they have been holding us back.

There is a powerful Sufi phrase regarding communication. But I feel it’s valuable, not just during communication with others, but also, for communication within ourselves. Sufi’s teach that there are three filters through which our thoughts should travel before being spoken: Is it true. Is it necessary. Is it kind. It’s the first filter that I’d like you to focus on as you move through your weekend. Is it true. To answer that one must first know what they believe. You almost always know what you believe once you take note of what rises within yourself when confronted with contrast or challenge, regardless of what we say or do outwardly.

My mother was very aware of what bubbles up from within herself. Fear. A life spent in fear had worn her down considerably. Some of the fear was inflicted upon her from outside sources. From there her inner fear grew stronger. Before long she viewed the world through a fear-shaded lens. Getting control over one’s own beliefs, owning them, healing them, then managing them – feels like an insurmountable task, at times. It did for my mother. It is the key to freedom, however. It is the key that unlocks one’s own power. It is the vital step that places us firmly in alignment with All That Is.

I won’t even begin to tell you, dear reader, that it is easy. It’s not. Life is a journey, whether you are cognizant of why you are here. You can either get run over by life. Or help lay the foundation that creates the road. You don’t get to control every turn. You don’t get to control every hill. Your Higher Self has you here doing things that are meant to develop your soul in ways from which your shadow self will always try to run and your mind will struggle to understand. But once you know your beliefs, things become clearer. Once you have mastery of the thought behind the thought, you look at the curve and see why it’s been placed before you. That is what alignment does – it lessens the fear of what’s around the corner and allows us to see things we couldn’t see before. Your beliefs matter. They tell you almost everything about your soul’s development.

Do you believe the Universe is conspiring to help or hurt you, to support or to penalize you? Do you believe that help is always there for you, just when you need it or that you will be left to suffer alone. Either way, you will get what you believe.

Believe in Love, dear reader. Believe it. Be it. See it.

Sane

Daily Refinement

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refinement |riˈfīnmənt|
The process of removing impurities or unwanted elements from a substance.
The improvement or clarification of something by the making of small changes.

I think it’s fair to say that our soul is on a journey of refinement. And this planet allows us everything we need to accomplish the mission.

People enter into our life, and with them arrives countless opportunities to learn more about ourselves. One would think that when we meet another, that’s all we’re doing – meeting them. And although that is an important part of the process, we are also meeting a plethora of aspects of our inner being. This happens not just when meeting people, but also when meeting different circumstances. The good, the bad. The blissful, the horrific. Each one is a gift when it comes to our spiritual development.

Believe me, dear reader, when I say that those moments and people who lean toward hurtful, or what is upsetting, are not viewed as a gift by my mind. At least not at first. But if I can override my mind, and refrain from judging, something magical happens. I meet a new aspect of who I am. Am I reactionary? Or am I calm? Are my actions mean? Or are they loving? I have been all of these things. Which has, at times, led me to believe that I have either achieved something or failed something. Neither is completely true. Awareness is a process. Even when we are able to climb the ladder another rung, we’re still moving. There’s still a process underway.

But that’s what life gives us, an unceasing array of people, places, and things, from which to discover – inwardly and outwardly – something about ourselves and those around us. That is why meditation is vital, it provides a break from the external. And thereby helps fortify and steady us when the external kicks back in.

There is a sticky spot, though. It is when we have become aware but are still resistant to our own growth. Quite honestly, it’s hell on earth. The internal struggle is phenomenal. I’ve often referred to those moments within my own life as having gone under. As that is how they felt to me. Dark and underwater. But in time, something within me recedes, the cloudy water clears, and I am able to see the stones on the ocean floor once again. But that is a hard battle. It is much easier to learn to float. Or dive when I choose.

When we are aware of our own journey, when we begin to glimpse what is behind the earthly veil, we see the road to salvation; freedom. We can either walk it or fight it. But it’s fair to say, your soul knows you are being refined and that Life is trying to help you find every impurity and unwanted element within yourself. If you fight it, then it will be left on a continual loop. But if you release and lean into what’s being shown, things become clarified. You have much more aha moments than you have God damn moments.

I’m far from a polished stone. There are still flecks within me and some raw edges. But with each day, with each experience, I am allowed to see what is off within myself and thereby own it, love it, and release it. It’s how the heart is made pure. The more I love me, the more I love life and its inhabitants. So, take a look at how you are being refined. Take strength in knowing, dear reader, that your heart is worth the work. Source knows it. Your soul knows. You are a magnificent work in progress.

Sane

Tending the Soil

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I have great appreciation for gardens, but do not possess of my own a green thumb. By no stretch of the imagination would one call me a gardener. But I am becoming skilled when it comes to weeding through those things that grow within my mind, heart and being.

With deliberateness, I plant seeds in the fertile ground of my soul. And with equal consciousness, I uproot all that grows within me that chokes the life from those things I want to see flourish. Seeds of fear, doubt and mistrust grow with the same remarkable speed as those in a physical garden; sometimes growing next to that of the newly planted seedling one has worked hard to cultivate, making it difficult to tell the two apart.

But a good gardener knows. The trick, is to pluck the new seedling, before it has a chance to pull our focus from the newly developing seeds of love, hope and trust. Sometimes, due to hastiness, misguided eagerness or for the sake of appearances, we glean all visual signs of the weeds from the soils surface. In the process, the roots are left to grow deeper. And before long, a more robust plant takes its place.

It amazes me the weeds that grow within me. Painstakingly, I carefully dig the spade within my self and gently uproot that which no longer serves me. Due to such, I can not look at anyone else’s garden and criticize. The wayward weeds that grow within them are merely the outpouring of an untended soul. We all have weeds.

I’d like to say that my weeds are all of the tender young variety; easily yanked from the ground and done away with. But that isn’t the case. Some have stalks rivaling that of a small tree. And when pulling them from the ground it requires a bit of methodical releasing of the soil that surrounds them; rocking of the plant to loosen them; then finally a mighty pull.

My garden, you see, is far from flawless. But my eye is forever scanning its surface. My intention is forever tilling the soil. And unlike some who turn their back on what rests within, I walk the rows within me as if a form of meditation. I like the way the soil of my soul feels on my bare feet; much like I do in the physical world. I see no flaw in admitting to one’s weeds. And I gladly help others uproot theirs. There are times, when I too need to call in a helping hand or two. Sometimes a pair of fresh, sincere eyes, can spot the weed taking root under one’s flourishing growth of new formed trust. And, like I said, there are times when what is within me requires the metaphysical equivalent of a tractor with chain. I’ve had all of this within me, at one time or another. Because of such, I understand the efforts required when one finally finds the courage to open the gate of their heart, and begins walking amongst the growth of their soul. At times, it’s absolutely startling what has sprouted and awaits our discovery.

It is up to us to decide what grows within us. Nothing is there without our choosing. And please know that doing nothing is still a choice. So, tend to your garden. Once the soil has been released from the burden of nourishing the weeds – you will be amazed at what comes to life.

Sane

First published, January 2013

Good Grief

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I woke today missing my mother so deeply I cried. And the tears seemed to cascade into every piece within me that feels broken, abandoned and utterly exhausted. I’m not sure if a soul can suffer from exhaustion. But there are times when mine feels so tired that I’m convinced it can.

Grief has a funny way of changing one’s life. Just the thought of losing someone can unearth within us things of which we weren’t even aware. Losing someone outright, well dear reader, that offers its own path of discovery. And from what I can tell the only way to get to the other side of grief, is by grieving. I come from a long line of people who hardened themselves against expansive emotions. Either by way of pure stoic strength or numbing themselves with alcohol, we didn’t show much emotion. God forbid we admit such a thing as crying, as it surely meant we were falling apart. When, in the case of what I’m feeling today, perhaps I’m falling together.

Emotion is meant to be felt; to point to an important part within ourselves. Sometimes emotion points to bits and pieces within us that need to be gathered up and mended. Sometimes it points to gifts that were meant to be cultivated and shared with the world. Whether pointing out our fears or pointing out our joys, either way, emotions are very much like our own internal GPS system meant to navigate us along our Divine path.

Its only been four months since losing my mother. And during those months I often found myself wishing life would give me a Get Out Of Jail Free card; something I could pull out and use to remind everyone that within me rests a heart that is hurting; one where a low-level dull ache has taken up residency. And behind every emotion I feel, both the good and the not so good, rests this ache. So tread lightly. But life doesn’t seem to offer such a thing. Instead, I feel like I’m pressed to keep offering my very best, to stand in the line of fire, to tip toe onto the farthest precipices of faith – all while feeling I’m only partially as whole as I use to be.

During the times when I am able to allow grief to do what it needs to do, I’ve taken note of the emotions that have surfaced. Some are more ugly than I’d like. There has been a fair share of the why me’s? Haven’t I endured enough? All the typical self-centered utterances of ego. Then there are the emotions that sit closer to my core. The one’s where I simply feel the emptiness of never being held by my mom, again, or the flash of penetrating loss when I go to send her a text to share a moment I know she’d enjoy – but realize I can’t.

I feel tired, dear reader. I feel as though I’m being pushed beyond my limits as of late. And grieving is only adding to the push. Then the soft voice of Spirit whispers within me. Yes, I know it feels that way, dear child. And, in many ways you are right, you are being pushed. You are growing. You are expanding into a more authentic version of yourself. A version that is ever more closely aligned with me. Stay strong. Don’t give up. It will all make sense in time. But know this, my child, the grieving is allowing you to open spaces within yourself that wouldn’t be opened otherwise. And your mother is helping you to do that.

So I cry some more. Most of all, I allow myself to cry. Why it is we humans get so wrapped up in prohibiting ourselves from feeling all that we need and are intended to feel, I don’t know. But we do. So today, dear reader, if you feel any of these things that I’ve shared with you, know that you are not alone. And what Spirit said to me, it is also saying to you. Don’t resist the emotion that pushes you from deep within. It is there to help you take notice of something. We are here to grow, to expand and express and experience. Emotion is often the very thing that helps us navigate that expansion. There is a teaching voice behind every emotion. What is it saying? Either it points to what has been holding us back, or it points to what will help move us forward. So don’t smother it. Listen and explore it.

Sane

Keeping the Faith

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Waiting is not something many of us are naturally obliged to do. Instead, it grates at us in way like no other. More than that, it can cause us to doubt ourself, and the power behind our ability to shape our future. It can even cause us to doubt that fate is a cooperate force, allowing for our say in anything. Waiting for many of us, is our Achilles heel.

But for a moment, please look at waiting as part of the plan, and not an impediment to the plan. Please do yourself this great favor and look at the making of your desires and future similar to the way one makes a cake. First comes the idea to make something. Usually this is brought on by noticing the absence of this something from one’s life. We damn these moments in time when we feel lack, and yet those moment are the very things that cause us to identify that which we desire. Once identified, we now need to move forward.

Due to knowing what we don’t want, we set off to imagine that which we do. We scan the world around us deciding what ingredients we want and what ingredients we do not. In our mind we begin to put together the recipe for our desire. We aren’t going to add ginger this time around because our experience with ginger in the past has shown us that it was terrible to our tongue. Ginger is out. Nutmeg is in. It’s a process.

The recipe for our desires is much the same. By being married to the wrong partner it was shown to us what we want in the right partner. By working a job that did not feel right it was shown to us the possible avenues that may feel right. By living in the cold we were given the chance to fully understand that we want only to live in the warmth. This happens on a small-scale. This happens on a large-scale. But it never stops happening. Not only do we walk through the contrast, the contrast is all around us. And so the process continues.

We let our desires settle into our being just the same as we place the batter-filled pan in the oven. Our work is done, we feel. But I don’t believe that is the case at all. Waiting is part of the work. We must be faithful while the cake bakes. And each and every time we doubt that its working, we cause a delay. We open the oven door repeatedly causing the oven temperature to plummet. And sometimes when panic sets in we take the cake pan out of the oven completely. We question what we did wrong. We question if the oven is working. We question everything. Our job is to keep the oven temperature steady and strong. We do this by having faith. Keep the door closed, and know that its working.

Faith is the fuel that causes the cake to bake, for dreams to come to fruition. I can’t say exactly why our faith gets tested so often along the way. But perhaps it’s not tested so much as to cause us grief, as it is tested to ensure that the temp is still set at the level necessary. We get sloppy and lazy, along the way. Its human nature. Very easily we forget our job. Our job is to stay on course, and to keep the faith strong – regardless of circumstances, not fluctuating as a result of circumstances. So, don’t give up. keep the faith burning, dear reader.

Sane

Originally posted August 2013. Yet, I’m finding myself so much in need of these words, I thought perhaps you might be in need of reading them, too.

And, Before All Else

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“Faith goes before; understanding follows after.” A great theologian believed this, and so do I. Believing after the fact is simple. Believing before the manifestation has presented itself, is not. And yet, faith requires such.

You are the artist of your own life’s portrait, I believe. I also believe each of us has more power than we know; more power than even Saint Augustine knew 15,000 years ago when he made that statement. To me life is a combination effort. At times I have waited on God. At times God has waited on me. And when I choose not to take an active part in the creation of my life, things become stagnant. I become stagnant. The paint upon my canvas dries, and the picture stays incomplete.

Pick the size of your canvas. Choose the colors. Paint with wild abandon or with careful precision. Just paint. We don’t have to understand the unfolding, just have faith that it will unfold. Don’t give up. Don’t doubt due to a lack of understanding. Faith needs no understanding. Often understanding hinders faith. If we look only to the left, because our understanding knows only that direction, then we will miss what may very well be arriving to the right. The universe utilizes all things, not just those of which we are aware and are familiar.

It isn’t easy painting within yourself an image that lies in bright contrast to one’s reality. And I would be remiss if I did not admit that at times I have had to turn away from my own canvas as it pained me too greatly to see the dissonance between what was wanted and what was. But always, when ready I pick up the brush again, dab it into Cerulean Blue, and move across the canvas with broad strokes. God allows us these moments. And I have faith that during which this benevolent force keeps me afloat.

We must step back from the canvas of our life at times. We owe ourselves as much. Not to scrutinize but to survey. At times we swipe out something that no longer suits us, and start over. Sometimes we add onto what is already in place. Its our canvas, and I believe God is pleased when we do this. My God is not one of dominance. My God is not one of judgment. My God wants to explore this world through the vehicle that is me. No one will experience the world in the same way. And that, in my opinion, is what the soul us up to, what God is up to: Exploration, expression through all of us.

Paint the life for yourself that makes you smile. Don’t sell yourself short. You need not understand how things will come together; just have faith they will. It will not work unless you do. Your job is to keep believing, and to take action when the time is right. Keep the faith. Keep the essence of that which you want held firmly within your mind, your heart, and your inner being. You are energy. And energy fuels the universe. Energy does not require of us to understand its ways. Faith comes first, that’s the mechanics of energy.

Sane

Originally published, July 2013