Sunday, December 21, 2014

Winter Solstice 2014

Merry Yule and a Happy Winter Solstice to All!
On this, the longest night of the year, or the shortest day, depending on how you prefer to look at it, we will soon be greeted with the gradual 'return' of more and more light.
I am a tad late with this post, but there are good reasons for the delay.
In 2006, I formed a relationship with a man that also brought two children - a human child and a canine child.
We lost the human child a few years ago after a long struggle.
On December 19, 2014, we lost our canine child after a long struggle with degenerative spinal myelopathy.
I tried to not become "attached".
I tried to resist tender feelings and love.
I tried to stay at a distance.
All of my efforts were futile.
As I sit here, trying to type, my heart actually hurts.
In the Kadampa tradition, I am being taught that love is not supposed to hurt - that attachment is the pain maker.
Well, I am now experiencing that which I sought to balm by attempting 'detachment'.
This loss hurts like hell.
No matter how many beings that you love and lose - each 'separation' is painful, often unbearably so.
One may even surmise that with all of the losses incurred in this life, that they would get easier to bear with more experience.
My Friend, I believe that my pain may actually be increasing with such 'experience' - especially as I come to know my own mortality. A fragile mortality magnified by caring for the sick, the suffering and the dying.
On that note, I am going to end this post.
Apologies, but I am experiencing the kind of grief that disturbs my concentration and attention.
I still must believe that love is worth every tear shed. 
I still must believe that love is the only thing that holds meaning in this journey called life. 
I still must believe that every being that undertakes this journey seeks love.
That said, I will leave you with an excerpt of an old prayer that is typically dedicated to the Winter Solstice and seems especially suited to this occasion.

"I am the circle of rebirth.
I ask no sacrifice, but do bow,
No other law but love I know,
By naught but love may I be known.
All things living are mine own,
From me they come, to me they go."

December 4, 2001 - December 19, 2014
Photo courtesy of Chandra Eswaran

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Time Doing - Being

As a birthday of note fast approaches, I find myself pondering time. 
In a very absurd twist, I have no idea how I racked up so many miles!
As a person whose work value was measured in "billable hours" (a term that can strike fear in legal folks) I have the utmost respect for time. 
Loved ones ask me what I want for my *big* birthday, I can only answer 'time', or items and services that will help free up time. 
If I look back over my life, I see that I attempted to cram the nine lives of a cat into my one. 
During the present moment, I am amazed that God has granted me the grace of the time I have spent on earth. 
It is for good reason that time is referred to as being "spent" - rather like money. Money comes and goes and that account can accept deposits.
Alas, the account of time is only available for withdrawal, my Friends.
I now KNOW that my time is limited, so I do not want to waste a moment. 
However, I am uncertain what it is that I should be doing with my precious time. 
The other day, I completely and spontaneously unplugged from the phone, the email, my business, chores, bills and work. I made the conscious and deliberate choice to go to a new place and simply see what grace ushered in for me. 
The oddest thing happened.
I had some fleeting moments of giddy freedom. I met a few new friends. I had fun.
This way of spending time is so beneficial to the spirit. 
How sad that most of us (that would be me) have to schedule it.
 I accomplished more in that day than I did in a recent week's labor. 
For a brief moment, I actually understood the concept of BE-ING.
So, I am still learning. 
Learning and wondering if I have lived my life in a backward fashion.
All of these years I was focused on DO-ING instead of BE-ING
It is no wonder that after a lifetime of running, it feels as though I have been standing still for a few years. 
I am not used to BE-ING!
May we all be graced with the gift of another birthday - another opportunity to learn - another day to BE.

Fire Image Courtesy of Chandra Eswaran
Love. Peace. Gratitude.

Friday, November 22, 2013

My Favorite Quotation of All Time!

As much as I admired JFK, his brother, "Bobby", was a true wordsmith.

I have searched for this quote for many, many years after hearing it long ago. 

I found it today - the 50th anniversary of the assassination of JFK.

It is worthy of consideration.
It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. 
Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance."
 Robert Fitzgerald Kennedy
(Address Day of Affirmation, University of Capetown, June 6, 1966).

RFK Speaking at a Civil Rights Rally
  Robert Fitzgerald Kennedy
November 20, 1925 - June 6, 1968

Inspiration: President John F. Kennedy

Some quotes from the 35th President of the United States, and the only one to have won a Pulitzer Prize, John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
To me, these quotes hold particularly pertinent truth during these turbulent times. 
They also make me long for a hero.
"Too often we ... enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."
John Fitzgerald Kennedy
"Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth."
John Fitzgerald Kennedy
"Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one's own beliefs, rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others."
John Fitzgerald Kennedy

The President delivering his Civil Rights Address 06/11/63
John Fitzgerald Kennedy
May 29, 1917 - November 22, 1963

Image Courtesy of Wikipedia

Monday, October 28, 2013

Lou Reed - A Small Tribute for a Giant

I heard the news about the passing of Lou Reed on NPR at approximately 8:30 a.m., EST, today.
I was literally stunned. 
Then, I cried.
Lou Reed was a hugely influential musician/poet/artist/journalist/conscience and I have no words here that can begin to describe Lou's formidable work over the years.
I have no words that can express the enormity of this loss.
I have no words to console his widow, the artist/musician Laurie Anderson.
I can only say that, like many of my kind, both of these talents held considerable stature for art students in the day, as well as this day. They were our mentors/heroes/heroines/entertainment/peers. Laurie Anderson was featured in a book that I read in early years which really inspired me to earn my M.F.A. ( a rarity for women in those days).
Both Lou and Laurie worked and evolved, formed and forged lives from their unique creations.
I had the great good fortune to see both Lou and Laurie as solo performers - different decades.
What a gift. Right Place - Right Time.
Here is what I really think about Lou Reed.
I believe that Lou Reed told the TRUTH
Telling the truth in this world is dangerous and often ugly. 
It must have been extremely difficult for this obviously sensitive man to chronicle all of his truthful observations.
He never compromised.
Lou Reed was a tremendous example of an artist who kept evolving and observing and working.
Someone wrote that Lou had become "the conscience of New York", the city with whom he had the 'longest relationship of his life'.
This is a dark day for those who pursue truth.
'Fly away' on the wings of Angels, Lou. 
The "Dirty Boulevard" will no longer bear your physical footsteps.
Love lives forever.

Lou Reed
March 2, 1942 - October 27, 2013

Lou + Laurie = Love
Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson
Lou Reed
Images courtesy of Facebook
Lou Reed Fan Page

Saturday, October 12, 2013


Gentle Reader,
I suddenly find myself in the beautiful season of Autumn, wondering how time could *seem* to have passed so quickly since my last post.
There are a few reasons for my absence in the blogging world.
1). I made a major move to a new location, literally a thousand miles away from the previous locale.
2). I suffered a sprain to my sacroiliac that forced me to stop nearly all customary, daily activities.
3). A flood occurred in the new house, that caused some major damage.
So, all in all, I now see where the time has been spent.
I am very happy to be able to write this post, 'better late than never' is appropriate here.
Having so much time to sit and contemplate the meaning of life, I could not help but wonder if these setbacks were some kind of signal from the Universe that the move was not auspicious.
I also wondered why I have grown so cautious in the last half of my life, becoming so much different than my decisive, courageous youth. It seems more logical that the opposite should occur.
With all 'the troubles' surrounding this recent move (trust me, there were more than I am prepared to lay out in this venue), I was miserable, unhappy and downright depressed. 
As most of you know, moving is a chore not to be taken lightly. 
Add the moving stress to real property sale and acquisition, numerous problems (some of which is written above), coping with complete change, excruciating pain and the unbelievable complexity of all that goes with the flooding disaster and restoration, I found myself bogged down with mountains of paperwork, phone calls, red tape and *stuff* - both material and emotional.
My precious time on this earth (something that I have always been hyper aware of) was literally taken up with nearly everything that I despise - something had to give.
I could not help but think of a childhood friend, confined to a bed for several years now, due to the debilitation of ALS. 
The thought of his suffering made me ashamed of my own trifling complaints.
I also thought of how happy and carefree we were in our childhood, teenaged and young adult lives. 
How could I regain that feeling of being CARE - FREE?
For me, the answer came in one word: PLAY.
It may seem silly to most, but seriously, I had lost the ability to play.
 Everything in my daily life felt like work - begrudging work at that. 
Picasso once remarked something to the effect that it took him a few months to paint like a master, but a lifetime to learn to paint like a child.
So, I am attempting to re-learn the art of play. 
I have some hurdles and mindsets to overcome - art school, contrary to popular opinion, is very hard on one's self esteem. Between critiques, competitions and trying to climb the proverbial ladder, this particular discipline can do a number on a young student. 
In my case, I need to deprogram the notion that every piece that I create must be 'critique' worthy.
Remember to 'play' ....
I also need to remove the constant monetary challenges that can stifle anyone's creativity. I need not justify the financial impact of every work.
Remember to 'play' ....
So, you see, I have some work play to do!
Wish me luck.
In Love, Truth and Beauty .....
Source Unknown

Sunday, February 24, 2013

To the Light, Luke!

In the face of increasing violence, greed, lies, murders, political division and just downright darkness, I felt moved to write this post. 
Have people changed, or have was darkness merely hiding throughout humanity's history? 
Why does the present time on planet earth feel so perilous? 
It seems that the "age of anxiety" has emerged with a second, more powerful and sinister coming.
 I have a few theories.
 A few things to know about my personal back ground....
1). I was raised in the Roman Catholic religion,
2). I was the quintessential 'good girl',
3). It has been alarming to me that currently darkness seems to envelope the light of life;
4). I am no stranger to loss and depression (who amongst us is not susceptible?), which tends to fell me like a mighty in a silent forest.
5). The current state of misery in the world is NOT what I was taught, promised or believed
Very recently, I felt a depressive episode coming on ... and, seemingly nothing could halt it, lift it, shoo it away from my spirit. 
I literally could not awaken from sleep, much like lying in a coffin - it was that bad. 
I had an important realization from this episode. 
An important lesson that I believe is worth sharing with you. 
Here goes: 
The more one succumbs to the darkness, the depression, the oppression, the more one is susceptible to the same. 
Like an invitation, when your energy is flat, low, non-existent, depressed ... you literally become a vessel for those lower, parasitic, dark energies. 
I do not know how it happened. 
I do not know why it happened. 
I do not know how I overcame this state. 
But I did. 
This sounds silly, but here is a secret.
 I forced myself to put on music that made me dance. 
When the physical body is 'stuck', you can and you must move!
Your mind will follow.
(and any Parliament Funkadelic fans KNOW this to be fact)
You can move your way forward "to the light", Luke Skywalker!
 Guess what? 
If you make a daily practice of this movement, you absolutely lift your vibration and energy to a place that chase the darkness away.
 Does it take work? Absolutely.
 Is it hard? Sometimes. 
Is it worth it? Well, you tell me. 
Are you willing to dwell and co-conspire with the forces of darkness that control you? 
Not me! 
No way! 
Step into your power and soar into the light and embrace the privilege called "life" that one should never take for granted. 
It is in these hard lessons that our karma is burned. 
Our enemies destroyed. 
Our soul is free to accomplish its true purpose. 
A life is a terrible thing to waste. 
Get moving!
 One step at a time ... lift yourself up so that you can shine like the sun on the day you were born! 
I have to believe that we can make a difference in this world. 
We start with ourselves.
Get that Jedi light sabre out and burn the darkness right out of your life.
Every being will lift up in light and gratitude!

Image courtesy of Chandra Eswaran

With Love, Light and Gratitude!