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Archive for February, 2014

I have never considered myself a “writer”. I have no formal training, no diploma that anoints me to this sanctioned post.

As I prepare for my first ever writing retreat I discover to my surprise I am a writer. Writing has been a longtime companion often under lock and key in a private world of diaries and journals.

Writing is an expression of my soul. What certificate is needed for our soul to speak?

One writing assignment to prepare for my“write a bestseller in a weekend” workshop (it usually takes a weekend to write a blog!) asks us to begin writing on…

What I am meant to do with my writing.

These are some of the words that come through.

Monk by Alexiuss

Monk by Alexiuss

Does your voice really matter? Does it really count? Do you have the strength and confidence to make a difference in the world?

You identify with doubt but it is simply something you cling to in order to keep from experiencing the majesty of your truth. It is a security blanket, warm and comfortable. But doubt is not the truth of who you are.

Doubt hides your truth, even from you. For there is fear in being seen.

Every time you allowed your truth to shine you were hurt. Your light had to dampen. It was not safe to shine.

Doubt is the dimming.

Doubt began as a warm, grey coat you put on for protection. But it wove itself into the fabric of your being, undermining your instincts, clouding your perceptions.

If the light of your truth was too bright for others, the natural response was to go dim to survive.

Doubt was a way to handle your light. That is all it is. A way to cope. A brilliant strategy but not your truth.

It is time to remove the cloak of doubt.

Is that even possible? Where would it go? How will I feel safe?

To be safe is a fundamental need. We continually look for security outside of ourself. We look in our bank accounts, we look to our partners.

We do not want our beliefs threatened for they are the bedrock of our safety net. Like with doubt. It limits you but the thought of living without it is unsettling.

Where will you hide? How will you live if you are exposed, naked and seen? That can feel more frightening than doubt.

Yet true safety, true security, will not be found until we are stripped naked of hiding places.

It is the paradox of spiritual law. To be safe we must leave what we have relied on for security for it has held captive our soul.

Our minds have dominated our consciousness for centuries. Laws have risen rooted in science and reason. Prove it says the mind. Show me and it succumbs.

The paradox of spiritual law makes no sense to the logic of mind for Spirit is not of the mind. It cannot be governed by its laws.

As our spiritual consciousness evolves our laws and beliefs must shift.

The laws that govern our soul need to be understood to offer guidance and direction.

It is time to take off the cloak.

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When I first heard of the mystical caves of Ra Paulette I became enamored. My heart was full of a desire to be in one. Not as a curious tourist but as a medicine woman. How a city girl would find her way to a cave in rural Northern New Mexico was beyond me. I offered my wish to Spirit. If it was to be the way would open.

Embudo River, Embudo, NM

Rio Embudo, Embudo, NM

My pilgrimage began with a friend request on facebook, the modern day version of sending smoke signals.

Shortly thereafter I was coursing along Rio Embudo, my little Honda traversing the rough terrain like a 4 wheeler (well more like the little engine that could).

One of Ra’s mystical creations sits on Scott’s property. Scott’s generous heart created an immediate kinship as I arrived at his home for our first meeting to create ceremony.

The short trek from the house to the cave’s entrance was guided by Lou and Ruxton, two of the friendliest gatekeepers.

My Happy Guides to the Cave

My Happy Guides to the Cave

One thing I learned as a child is you never show up at someone’s home empty-handed. The same is true of someone’s cave.

Offerings were made in gratitude for the grace that guided me here.

A dreamcatcher was hung at the doorway to capture the wishes of all souls in need.

Your wish is here

Your wish is here

After entering the cave, a short walkway beguiles the majesty that lies beyond.

The Way is Open

The Way is Open

The space is holy, sacred. You are immediately humbled. What else can one do in the face of God?

The hand sculpted cathedral hidden deep within Pachamama is at once earthly and ethereal.

Slowly, reverently I make my way through. It is the only way to walk here. Every step on our Mother should be so hallowed.

Stairs spiral to a balcony surrounding the heart of this soaring space.

Seats are built into earth as meditative respites. Shrines are hand chiseled into stone. Nooks lay like little wombs waiting to hold you.

Words alone cannot describe. Awe perhaps? That pales in this palace. Words fall away.

Spirit Stairway

Spirit Stairway

I did take pictures but other than the ones here they are not worth sharing. The space cannot be captured that way. It must be felt to be known.

My desire for ceremony began with a love filled intent, the source of any creation.

And this ceremony has begun.

It is a practice in trust, informed by our Mother and this divine infused human creation.

There is not much “doing”. The space itself transforms.

It provokes our deepest listening.

It awakens our deepest silence.

It allows us to be held in an infinite well of Mother Love. A womb that has the power to hold all of human suffering.

This vessel is a mirror of our vessel, holy and sacred.

We are reminded of the humbleness of our power.

Our luminous body is re-informed by the Great Mother who wants us to know we are of her.

We are infinite love, infinite creation, infinite mystery, infinite wisdom.

It is time to remember.

The invitation to ceremony is open. I offer this so the seed may be planted.

It is born from your intent.

CaveDigger, nominated for an Academy Award, is the short documentary that tells the story of Ra Paulette and his mystical cave creations.

Watch the trailer for a glimpse into a world divine.

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You can learn a lot from someone who is dying. When death is no longer an intellectual musing but has become an ill fated lover we are stripped naked in the face of our own mortality. Truth distills to simplicity.

Photo by Don Myer

A woman I work with is on hospice, bedridden for the past year. Our work is to get her on her feet so she can stay in her home to die, a requirement since she lives alone. Liability issues often take precedence. (That my friends is another blog!)

From a few shaky steps at the start, she is doing remarkably well now, pushing her walker for short distances in her home.

This work takes all of our focus. To start, she is much larger than me. Her legs are not always under her control. One missed step and she would be down with no way of getting her back up. I follow intently, holding her with one hand as the other pulls her wheelchair right behind her.

We venture one day to the back of the house, a space she has not been in for nearly a year. She sits back in the wheelchair after walking ten feet as magical timbres fill the air. Where were these beautiful sounds coming from?

Three Koshi chimes swing gently in the archway. My head inadvertently hit them as we passed under.

I was first bathed in their transcendent tones at a ceremony in Santa Fe. Tito La Rosa, Andean musician and sound healer from Peru was at YogaSource. Immediately captivated by their quiet wonder I ordered them when I returned home.

Hearing them filled me with the delight of a child.  “I love Koshi chimes,” I told her.

“You can have them”,  she said.

My initial impulse to her gift was, “Oh no, I couldn’t”, succumbing to the voice saying you can’t possibly have what you really want along with some tortured versions of better to give than receive.

My delight immediately shut down.

“The last thing I want is a yard sale when I’m gone.”

What really matters becomes crystal clear when everything that matters is slipping away.

“I see how your eyes light up when you look at them. I want you to have them now rather than wait to leave them for you in some will. It’s much more fun that way.”

Not only had my own delight shut down with my refusal but I was denying her the pleasure in giving them to me. We both lose.

As I opened the well of receptivity in my own heart I tasted a deep truth in giving and receiving.

A gift that is given and received freely, in its purest sense, is simply joy. A joy for the one who gives and a joy for the one who receives.

There is no agenda. No conditions. No strings attached to the gift. This dying woman offering chimes with unadulterated attachment was one of the purest gifts I have ever received.

Often a gift comes with conditions, hidden or blatant. If you are good, if you are worthy, if you love me, then, and only then is the gift yours. The price tag is often way too high. The giving comes as a way to keep someone bound. To keep someone needing us. It is the twisted power play of co-dependent relationships. The natural flow of energy between two hearts becomes so laden with conditions, expectations and demands. The gift becomes a burden to bear.

When we strip it clean and polish it to purity, this exchange of giving and receiving is an immaculate transmission of our sacred heart. Whatever the exchange, be it time, money, love or a bow tied box, the true gift is the lightness of joy.

I left her home like a child on Christmas morning, rich in a bounty of gifts.

There is a lot to learn from someone who is dying.

Head to the Peaceful Puddle for more on Koshi Chimes.

Listen to Koshi Chimes here.

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