Balance

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Today is the Autumn Equinox. Day and night are of equal length for a few days and then the days will become shorter.

It is the time of harvest. When we reap what we have sown and labored so hard to produce. It is a time of harmony and balance. When everything is exactly as it is supposed to be.

Seeing that balance isn’t always easy so I’m going to refer to the Oxford Dictionary to help:

bal·ance [ˈbaləns] NOUN
1. an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain 
upright and steady: 
"slipping in the mud but keeping their balance" ·
synonyms: stability · equilibrium · steadiness · footing

I appreciate the example they provide, “slipping in the mud but keeping their balance”. I can relate to that. It defines balance as tenuous yet firm. Precarious and cautionary but upright and steady.

Balance doesn’t mean sure footed. In fact, I am most likely to be seeking better footing when balance is even, but slip and slide aside, I remain upright.

Tonight I celebrate that balance and while I do it while physically alone, I do it forging ahead with plans to join my Beloved.

The past and future are even tonight and beginning tomorrow the days grow shorter and each shortened day brings me closer to her.

Whether you call this day Mabon, The Second Harvest, Wine Harvest, Feast of Avalon, Winter Finding, or, my personal favorite, Cornucopia, I wish that this Autumn Equinox finds you in harmony and balance with all that you do and that your own harvest is as rich as my own.

 


 

Image: “Effervescent” by Christina Rivera

Timeless

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Time is as often friend as foe. It flows steadily. Never ending. We can tell ourselves that it is an illusion. That only “Now” exists. But that’s a half truth. Now is the only place we exist but we live in a progression of time. In our human form we have a beginning and an end. We are born, we live, we die. What happens in between is a combination of circumstances and events guided by will or careless indifference and interpreted by intention and understanding or misunderstanding.

I chose to embrace that knowledge some time back. To acknowledge that I had a beginning. That this body will at some point fail. That how I live now is entirely up to me. Not everyone gets that choice. Some are born into short and brutal lives. Some never get the chance to live at all.

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring. I see glimpses from time to time. Beautiful sunrises and sunsets in the arms of my Beloved. Compassionate days that flow into passionate nights. A flow of energy between us that builds and shares and expands. Perpetual. Timeless.

I want those things.

Time, however, often chooses the pace and, thus, can affect the quality of Now… if we allow it to. Plans made need to be shuffled again and again before they can be implemented and even then I must remain flexible to last second alterations.

This is where I am now: Making the best of unexpected changes. Unexpected changes making the best of me. Guiding the future with intention and understanding with one difference, mutual desire.

Not the base and often destructive sexual or sensual desire of immature love, though certainly that exists, how can it not? I do desire the physical connection of my lover. Intensely. More than that, however, is the desire to give and receive love. Physical. Emotional. Psychological. Spiritual. To create something together under the guidance of those intentions of compassion, connection, union, care, growth, and so much more that I so often describe as simply “love and gratitude” and through those intentions build something lasting. Eternal. Timeless.

Today the flow of Now across which time passes and at the edge of which I exist is both friend and seeming foe. It prevents immediate satisfaction of our goals. Blocks access to the woman I love. But every second that passes brings me ever closer to her and to Divine Union with her. In this it can only be considered friend.

I could focus on the obstacles or focus on the goal. The choice is made easy by these facts:

The obstacles are temporary.

Love is timeless.

I choose love.

 


 

Image: from the “Timeless” series by Moe Shirani

Change

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Change is the only constant. Change happens. Which is just a nice way of saying shit happens. But change itself is neither “good” nor “bad”. It is simply change.

Sometimes that change is small, easy to deal with; a fender bender, a missed appointment. Other times it is larger and affects us in unforeseen ways; the work season, already too slow, comes to a sudden halt leaving us worried, possibly near panic, about how we will survive. Sitll other times it is dramatic, profound; our home is blown away in a hurricane so massive it clears the land, burned in a wildfire so out of control that the smoke covers 5 states.

Though change itself is often out of our hands, where those changes lead us is almost always up to us.

Do I give in to the panic? The rage? The fear? Do we rebuild our homes? These are choices. The choices lead to decisions. The decisions, if based on intentions of love and gratitude rather than fear and panic, can lead to unexpected new places. New lives. New love. All of them of our choosing.

It’s okay to be angry with the Universe for these things, She’s used to it. No one wants their home destroyed or to lose their job after barely scraping by, but it’s important to look beyond those events to the possibilities and opportunities they open. New choices. New paths.

I am leaving North Dakota soon. Change has opened new doors for me. Opened my heart and my mind to a new life. I’ll be damned if I sit here and worry about what I don’t have when what I can have is so much more.

Know that whatever change you are facing, we all face it at some level, all of us. In that simple knowledge you are assured that you are not alone. Know also that no matter how insurmountable that change may feel it is simply the Universe saying “I love you. Time for something new.”

What that something is, is entirely up to you.

This change will be good because I will make it good.

 

The Four Agreements

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A few readers have asked where my sense of spirituality comes from. What, exactly, do I believe?

Big questions.

Obviously, I believe in the Divine Feminine. I do not share the view of a masculine creator. I call her the Universe but just as often refer to her as God or a number of other names. I will address this as well as my belief in Divine archetypes (i.e. Selene) in later articles.

But what else? A lot. Too much to define in any single reply. So I’ve decided to start sharing some of that, starting with The Four Agreements.

The Four Agreements are a Toltec philosophy written by Don Miguel Ruiz. It is one of the pillars of my beliefs and practices and has been instrumental in my personal growth and change.

Before I describe them and their effect in my life I want to point out that there are no Toltec. Not for a very long time. Most of what we know about the Toltec civilization comes from a scattering of Aztec history which is most often discounted as mythology. The rest comes from the writer Carlos Castaneda who describes them as sorcerers who just happen to share the name “Toltec” with that ancient civilization.

It is upon the back of Castaneda’s work that Ruiz built his name. I guess he saw an opportunity and took it but the truth is that Don Miguel’s work, his philosophy, stands on its own and connecting it to modern mythology detracts from it’s true potential. A potential that has led others, like Heather Ash Amara, to build off it and for me to consider it worth sharing.

So here they are, the Four Agreements:

1. Be Impeccable with your Word

Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love.”

I can’t tell you how much trouble I have with this one. I understand that our words carry power. Magick, if you will. I try to be impeccable but in the end I have no control over how people interpret what I say.
So…

2. Don’t Take Anything Personally

Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.”

This works both ways. What I do and say is a projection of my reality.

At the core of my beliefs stands the Tree of Life which is represented by the deceptively simple phrase, “As above, so below.”

What I allow into my core shapes me. What is at my core shapes my words and actions.

With that in mind I disagree with Don Miguel on this one point: He suggests we take nothing personally. Not even positive words and actions. I say if it’s good let it in. Just don’t let it go to your head.

And…

3. Don’t Make Assumptions

Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.”

The rule here is simple: Assume nothing. Not even that tomorrow will arrive.

This includes making assumptions about myself (“I can’t do this“, “there’s no way I can make this work“, etc).

It doesn’t matter if you fail at something if you…

4. Always Do Your Best

Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.”

I can not do any better than my best. Sometimes that means asking for help. I’m not very good at that.

The Four Agreements work together. Support each other.

Let’s say that I need to replace the intake gasket on my car:

Before I can say “I can do that” I need to know that I’m capable of it. I can’t just assume I can do it. So I fall back on experience. In the past I have done a good job on similar projects. I have done my best and it worked. Not taking that personal, not allowing it to go to my head because I am aware that changing spark plugs is not at all like changing an intake gasket, I can admit to myself that if I do my best it will get done. Even if I have to enlist the help of my mechanic buddy.

These Four Agreements can apply to everything from fixing leaky plumbing to committing myself to a loving relationship.

I have found that the most profound processes are often the most simple and straight forward. This is one of the most direct approaches to change I have ever used and with just a little practice it becomes second nature.

 

Full Moon in Pisces

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I step into the frigid air. My breath a misty apparition. The morning is lit by the warm blue glow of the full moon. Huge and bright.

This is the Corn Moon. Black Moon Lilith. Selene in the house of Pisces aligned with Neptune.

It is a time of deep spiritual growth, creativity, expectancy, forgiveness. The Divine Feminine is within reach, her hands outstretched. Now is the time to claim your rightful place in her loving embrace.

It is a time where should haves and might haves need to be put aside. When all those things that have been viewed as wishes and dreams are simply done.

Your soul is speaking loud and clear of passion and unity. It wants you to be the best you possible.

Listen to it.

Let its voice become yours.

Let this blessed full moon be a sign of how full your life can be.

 

 

You are the miracle

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“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
– Albert Einstein

We spend our lives waiting for and expecting miracles. A big win in the lottery or a suitcase full of money. Someone to love. Someone who will love us back.

We lament and regret and doubt and rage at all that we don’t have without ever once realizing that what we do have is the most amazing gift that we could ever have; Life.

Your life may be painful. Physically. Mentally. Spiritually. It may feel empty. Meaningless. Pointless. Fruitless. But the fact that you are reading these words, wherever you are, is an absolute miracle and I am amazed and ever grateful that you are. It means I am not alone. I am not empty or meaningless. It means the love I send out into the world is being received which also means that you are being loved.

Once you stop expecting miracles from outside and accept that you are the miracle you’ve been waiting for you start treating yourself with the care and compassion you deserve and things begin to change.

Instead of waiting around to win the lottery you become grateful for what you have no matter how meager or extravagant. You discover that money has no real meaning. Yes, we all have bills and need to eat and pay rent but do we really need the brand new car? The too big house with the too big payment? Not really. We buy them either because they make us look good or make us feel good and then we pray for a suitcase of money to pay for them.

When you see yourself as a miracle you start to respect yourself. Treat yourself with honor and dignity. You even begin to love yourself and no longer “need” love from someone else but want to share it. To extend yourself and commit yourself to making your life and the life of others or another, your partner, better, and in doing so make your own life better.

It’s like this perpetually expanding flood of miracles begins to happen. The things you really need, love, self-respect, positive self image, courage, faith, hope, all begin to manifest and as those things affect others you find people drawn to you and more good things happen. The miracle spreads and mixes and creates and manifests new feelings and new opportunity and new people. People like you; miracles.

Stop waiting around for a miracle because you are the miracle!

Live like it.

 

 

Image by Gentry Ann

not broken

I know you
I know why it is you cry at night
How you believe there’s no one who’s right
For you
No one at all
No one who loves
No one who cares
No one you can share
All your pains and sorrows
Your joys and your dreams of tomorrows
No one who answers
When you shout with all you soul
“Where are you?!”
I know you believe you are alone
I know you feel empty
Isolated in your empty home
I know the words you say
The prayers you pray
Why it is you feel this way
Why it is you keep believing
You are not good enough
Why it is you continue seeing
You
Unwanted
Unworthy
Imperfect
Rejected
I know your insecurities
How you feel you lack maturity
Your shame
Your guilt
Your silent threats
Spoken in times of consuming darkness
How you think your life is hopeless
How you think that you are broken
I know you
I know you better than anyone
I know
because I am you
We are the same
You and I
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve cried
How many times I wished I’d died
The intensity of the pain inside
The loss of self
The loss of pride
The stories I’ve told myself
to keep my Self in line
with what I believe to be true
but I’ve learned
they are all lies
All of them
Lies
You are worthy
You are so very worthy
You deserve to be loved
You deserve to be loved
You deserve it, Love
You should be treated better
Who you’ve been
Doesn’t matter
You should be treated better
by You
You have nothing to be ashamed of, Love
Nothing to take blame of
You are not unclaimed, Love
You have nothing to be sorry for
Nothing at all
We all make mistakes, Love
We all feel that ache, Love
Sometimes
some of us,
myself included,
(no one is precluded)
keep making the same mistakes
over and over
feeling like we’re never getting closer
So many times, in fact
we think it’s “normal”
and spend our life performing
the parts we manifest
instead of just being our best
and forgetting
our best it always good enough
Always good enough
You are always good enough, Love
The one you see
The one you think you’re being
when you see You broken
isn’t who you’re meant to be
even though it’s all you see
it’s not who I see
you are much more
more than you believe
so much more than you believe
more than the life you lead
more than what’s been handed you
more than what’s been forced on you
more than you know
but I know
I know
That person isn’t you
Those are just things
Things that happen
Things that happen to us
Things that happen to all of us
We are not defined by them
But by how we respond to them
So forgive yourself
Please forgive yourself, Love
You are not broken
Not damaged
Not broken
Not useless
Not broken
You are perfect
In your imperfections
Just take a look
at that beautiful reflection
You are perfect
I love you just the way you are;
not broken