Humble brown paper packages

November 27th, 2014

Humble brown paper packages

Humble brown paper packages

The sunrise didn’t look like much today…but there was this wonderful flock of seagulls at the waters edge, so I came down to capture them…and low and behold, captured this beautiful shot, no editing required.

My teacher of many years, Caroline Myss, has been known to say that the really significant things in life usually arrive in humble brown paper packages. We open them with no expectation, and their small plainness may initially be deeply disappointing. But as they unfold their simplicity in our lives, they have the biggest effect.
I was considering where in my life I know I have been unequivocally successful. The immediate answer was as a mother. Yet I never wanted to be a mother, never dreamed of being a mother, had never held a child until my daughter was born. My daughter arrived unexpectedly, breaking through the defenses of really good contraception.

Everything about her, and my ability to mother her, broke all expectations.

If I do nothing else in life of any note, then it is enough that she was born, and I raised her well.

Almost everything else that I have touched that has shone brightly in the world has been initiated with deep humility, and little attachment. The moment my bossy loud Miss “I” gets in the way, things just don’t work as “I” want them to.

Today’s sunrise is my teacher, once again.



Descending to the field of calm

November 26th, 2014

Decending to the field of calm

Descending to the field of calm

Somewhere beneath the chaos is a place of calm. Constant, steady, ever present.

We each share this centre. It is the thread that binds us all.

I suspect this place of calm is a common field…the field that Rumi wrote of when he said “out beyond the idea of right doing and wrong doing, there is a field….I will meet you there.”

We can access this field at any time, in any place. The process is one of dropping down. Go down below the noise, below the feelings, below the small self.

Is the seed the new or the ancient? Is it the beginning or the end, or both?

For where the seed began and ends is the same place we go to meet the stillness and calm.

When I look at this photo I am reminded of this ever present place where all is well in the world.



Seeing plenty first, in all things

November 25th, 2014

Aligning design services with how clients measure their own business success elevates the value of the creative process to the very tangible aspects of their industry that they already understand and respect.

November 25th

Dawn comes early at this time of year in the Southern Hemisphere. The birds start their song just around 4 am. From my bathroom window I could see the changing of the sky, and knew that I did actually miss the best part of this dawn, well before the sun breached the horizon.

I wondered how many beautiful dawns I had missed in my life time. And then thought immediately that the point was to not notice what was missed, but to really see what was there.

This is our way in modern culture. To focus on what we have missed, or lost, or do not have. And in the process miss what is there. The beauty. The plenty. The small things that nourish.

The ants who are very busy inhabiting my house as they always do when we need rain. The sand in my car, a sure sign of runs on the beach with my dog Milly. The bowl of cherries waiting to be relished. The long hot sunny days. The cool breeze. The feel of my bare feet on the ground as I walk from the beach to the coffee shop…

For too long I have seen the lack. Felt the lack. Compared myself around others as lacking.

Yet all around me is so much beauty and plenty.

And here in Australia we are never short on light. The wonderful light of this great Southern Land.

So much to be grateful for.

Determined I am to see the plenty first, in all things.

 



Our unique an beautiful pattern integrity

November 24th, 2014

Our unique an beautiful pattern integrity

Our unique an beautiful pattern integrity

I find myself sitting in this question. We we grow up to another stage of human development, does the operating principles of the Universe also grow up with us? Or in my case, does the operating principles of the Universe direct us clearly to grow up by no longer working in the formulamatic way of linear goal setting?

The world I came from was along the lines of…pick a goal, work hard at it, and harvest the fruits of your labour.

But for so long this formula simply has not worked for me. Broken with disappointment after years of giving my all to one goal or another, thwarted at every intersection, I had to do something differently.

Finally there was no other choice but to surrender and let it all go. My egoic ‘I’ could no longer be the ‘picker’ of the goal. The goal had to be emergent. Spontaneously arousable from within. I had to be willing to let go of any form of outcome. And simply set myself in motion.

The new keys I am discovering are…..emergent, beyond small self, stay in motion, let go of all attachment to form, focus on next step only, auto correct, continue…at each step pull back and see the whole, in relationship with the Universe…

And behind all of this is a thread….which is the thread of my life…sometimes we cannot see it exactly…but it is always there. Our unique an beautiful pattern integrity.

In these images of the sun rise, the pattern integrity is always the sun, the light, the beach and perhaps clouds. Same beach, same sun…but each day so remarkably different.

 



Into the well of spiritual exhaustion

October 23rd, 2014

Into the well of spiritual exhaustion

It amazes me that I have been a guest of this world for 54 years. Like many people I speak to in my generation, we feel as vital as we did in our thirties, yet the reflection in the mirror sometimes shocks. “Who is that person!” More scary, the reflection in our many devises as we look down to send a text, or make a call.

The lesson I am learning, after all of these years…is that I am not alone. Have never been alone. Have never carried a burden on my own…that this ‘aloneness’ is the delusion.

Yesterday while I was in a deep slump…I decided to practice what Pema Chodron teaches…”Instead of asking ourselves how to find security and happiness we could ask ourselves can I touch the centre of my pain? Can I sit with suffering, both yours and mine, without trying to make it go away? Can I stay present to the ache of loss and disgrace, disappointment in all of its many forms, and let it open me?”

So I did that…I went to the well of my spiritual exhaustion. Right into it…this feeling of shouldering a burden for so so long. My trying, trying, to animate my dreams, to support a world where beauty is found in all dimensions of enterprise. I went to the place where I felt abandoned by spirit. Abandoned…in despair.

And this question arose…

If spirit, soul, source are supporting me 100% right now…right at this moment…right when I feel so unsupported…if I was actually being fully supported…what would that support look like?

And the answer that arose was this…it would look exactly as it is right now. That the only way I will get that the support is there, always has been, always will be, is to go to the bottom of its ‘absence’. To see, at the bottom, that the absence is the lie.

Then this question arose…what does true partnership with Source look like…embracing the support in every moment?

It feels like this…

I was lying in my bed in the dark hours before dawn, and I let every cell in my body relax. I let my body sink…like melted butter…and I let the bed, the Universe, Source, hold me.

I felt held. Really deeply held.

Now to remember this is always available…always…



A burst of light..can hit you at anytime

October 22nd, 2014

A burst of light..can hit you at any time

A burst of light…can hit you at any time.

After a wonderful rich conversation with Cindy Wigglesworth today on the subject of her life work, Spiritual Intelligence, she defines spiritual as the innate human need to be connected with something larger than self.

It is hard to look at the daily, generative, consistent rising of the sun, in all its beauty, differences, colours…and not allow oneself to be connected to something larger than self.

As I am going through my own ‘meltdown in the crucible of life’ moment, I am reminded, as we learn through lived experience, that life changes in but a moment. The burst of light can indeed hit us at any time.

The question becomes…who is running the show? Is it my ego…or the part of me that is all wise and deeply connected to Source?

How easy it is to forget our always present connection to Source.

Once again…I let light remind me. In gratitude…in humility…



For in the next breath, or maybe the one after that…or even after that…comes the miracle….

October 21st, 2014

 For in the next breath, or maybe the one after that…or even after that…comes the miracle….

 For in the next breath, or maybe the one after that…or even after that…comes the miracle….

Most people know the feeling of nothingness after you have poured your heart and soul into something and it hasn’t worked out.

But here is the rub…it is not that it hasn’t worked out…it is that it hasn’t worked out as expected.

As expected…

Life rarely works out as expected.

On this morn I sit with this dark cloud over my soul…exhaustion from effort at ‘trying’ to make something work.

For well over 45 minutes after the time of the sun rise there was no sign of light. The cloud cover was too thick.

But then this. Magnificent. Break in the clouds.

The light is always there…..I must keep reminding myself…always…even when it is very dark…

The clouds are my teachers…in their obscuring the light they remind me to stop pushing, stop trying, let the effort go… let the light in…

For in the next breath, or maybe the one after that…or even after that…comes the miracle….



The arc of my next evolution

October 14th, 2014

The arc of my next evolution

The arc of my next evolution

On this morn I was fighting inner demons. Old stories of failure, hardship, of being alone in the world. It seemed fitting that the sky was a story of greys.

Yet I found beauty here, in the drizzle. The drama of the greys.

And from the other side of the world a voice came…reminding me that all was not lost. That it was time to create a new strategy. To focus. Get into action. To not have the story and the existing reality ruin me.

I was also reminded, through a voice in my head, courtesy of a podcast, that the luminaries of our recent past, Nelson Mandela and Viktor Frankl, managed to find meaning and purpose in the harshest of all conditions. They did not let the exterior world define them. They defined their world from the inside out.

I know what I am to do, what my life is about. I did not choose an easy path. But I did choose the path. I chose the path.

Now, will I love walking it, no matter what? This is the arc of my next evolution.



A touch of Grace

September 30th, 2014

A touch of Grace

Grace meets you right where it finds you, but it does not leave you where it found you. Anne Lamont

The thing about despair is that the moment we open ourselves to receiving Grace, Grace will find us.

That may be as simple as the sunrise. Or a chat with a seagull. It may be the impulse to get out of bed this morn, when only 4 hours of sleep has been had, because something tells me to be at the beach for the sunrise. (It was worth it, don’t you think?)

It can be a smile from a stranger, the person offering to carry your bags…or the man at the airport asking if you are OK.

Grace doesn’t ask questions of you, or have an agenda. It simply is. It is not put off by our very bad mood, or our dangerous ways. It will not judge you for the colour of your skin, the state of your dress.. or your mind.

Grace is..

And after it has touched us, we are not the same. Grace cannot leave us as we are when it found us…

Humans, life…is made…emerges…one touch of Grace at a time.

 

 

 

 



Too much light

September 28th, 2014

Too much light

Too much light

The beauty of this photo is that the sun is hidden behind the clouds. The moment it rises above the clouds the definition and dimension of the clouds will be lost.

As the observer of many dawns, I see the patterns of the clouds on the dawn horizon. Each day unique. Occasionally absent.

Several hours into the day if I look closely I might still be able to discern the same clouds. Yet their features have been diminished by the brilliance of the sun.

Sometimes we have too much light. The light from the sun can make us appear pale. Even washed out. The brilliance of another’s light might make us feel dull in our own. Of course, neither of these things are true, just as I know those dawn clouds are still there washed out by the brilliance of the sun.

Beauty lives in all the dimensions, from blinding light to shadows.

However it is in the contrast we get a story worth living. The contours and dimensions, the highs and lows…

Yet so often we make that contrast the focus of wrong. Black or white, young and old…

In my older years I am able to both celebrate youth and embrace wisdom. And sometimes I might know that on some dimension, my youth and my older self all exist simultaneously, that time itself is a story, just as the contrasts and contours are.

For now I have a deeper respect for the clouds.