Spiritual Development

(First posted August 31, 2011)
I received an e-mail from a man asking: “Can you please give me some help to understand the importance of Spiritual Development and training?” Albeit unspecific, this is a great question. I am delighted the places my attention went at its behest.

I asked what spiritual development and training meant to him. Without knowing this, I may or may answer “his” question, I may instead answer my interpretation of it. He let me choose the meaning of his question.

Here is one answer. It is, according to my personal cosmology and how I see the world, the most germane.

Developing oneself spiritually is only important if a person is moved to unfold oneself spiritually or energetically. And then, only if the impetus to do so arises from the Mystery – rather than from another source, such as your thinking, or from outside social pressures. Without the prompt being genuine, and genuinely one’s own, and of the Mystery – spiritual development and training is wholly, completely, and unutterably irrelevant and unnecessary – FULL STOP!

To carry on with an answer would be pandering to the human personality or ego – which is itself dead set on impeding awakening of any sort, spiritual or otherwise! However, since I, too, as most, engage in such silliness, I will offer a bit more:

Recently I had the delightful privilege to sit atop a cliff and watch large birds of prey soaring and gliding on the currents of air at the cliff’s edge. After watching several vultures flying, one came along with one-fourth of the feathers on the inside trailing edge of its left wing missing. I watched it for sometime. It no doubt engaged in nuanced movements I missed, yet, it managed its maneuvers and navigated the currents and winds as well as its cohorts bearing full plumage.

Shit happens to people too. Given this, it may become important to develop and train spiritually: to carry on with a modicum of equanimity and Grace were the Mystery to send a fierce loving life altering force into one’s life. The nuanced movements of the bird of prey were NOT born out of fear, a sense of loss or rage. But instead, from a calm knowing that change is what is. Spiritual development and training will further a person’s movement toward and into such equanimity and Grace.

Spiritual development and training is the process of energetic and spiritual awakening that only works when one has genuinely committed to the process of psychological awakening too. It is the mending and clearing of old injuries and consenting to the life that is one’s own. Together these forms of awaking permit one to vacate the life the world offered and move house. To move toward and into truly living our your own life. To creatively express what is yours alone to express. To say yes to Life. To respond to the Mystery moment to moment. The Mystery is calling us ceaselessly. Few are aware of the call. Fewer still respond.

There is so much to bring to the fore around this question. That will come later in an essay which I have already begun.

Meanwhile, enjoy Mary Oliver who no doubt lives the question.

The Summer Day

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean-
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

And Now, After the Requiem…

(First posted on June 8th, 2012)
An Idea Whose Time is – NOW: OCCUPYING ONESELF
After over half a century of the New Age Movement what progress have we made, really? We have of course our political correctness, a “spiritual language,” our beliefs, and tightly held convictions and dogmas: our New Age fundamentalisms. We speak about helping humanity, changing or saving our planet. Yet, this is distraction!


If salvation is warranted it lies within each of us individually. The only changes deserving our attention are those within each of individually. This is our charge, our task:

• To love ourselves.
• To heal our injuries.
• To learn to navigate personal challenges graciously.
• To embody the brilliance of our creative expression.
• To reveal ourselves to others.
• To let go of what no longer works in our lives.
• To act with compassionate intelligence.
• To befriend Wisdom.
• To remember our dignity, beauty and innocence are always intact.
• To consent to life as it is.
• To listen to the Mystery’s moment and respond.
• To improve our relationship to power.
• To stop fearing those who differ from us.
• To give up wanting to annihilate those who differ.
• To offer counterforce without attack.
• To attend to and help those coming up behind us without imposing our will or intent.
• To support the self confidence of those we love.
• To say Yes to Life!

The only one we can change and save is our own self. Improving conditions for humanity, for our societies, cultures, economies, and our relationship with our Earth cannot be pursued directly. Doing so is folly. Distraction. The changes we desire for our world ensue from doing what changes ourselves, giving ourselves over to change. This requires self compassion and self discipline!
• What will it take to stop pretending?
• What will it take to stop pretending that I am not pretending? 
• What self-deceptions await my letting go?
• What will it take to let go of resisting life? 
• What will it take to say YES to Life?
• What will it take to make the radical step of truly loving myself?
• What will it take to attend to something beyond my mind, self-critical nemesis, personality and body? to attend instead to life’s beauty and Grace? 
• What will it take to muster the discipline and courage to allow myself to be changed by the Mystery? to claim and occupy my sovereign self?

Adrienne Rich’s poem: Time

Either you will 
go through this door
or you will not go through.

If you go through
there is always the risk
of remembering your name.

Things look at you doubly 
and you must look back
and let them happen.

If you do not go through 
it is possible
to live worthily

to maintain your attitudes
to hold your position
to die bravely

but much will blind you,
much will evade you,
at what cost who knows?

The door itself
makes no promises.
It is only a door.


(First posted September 13, 2011)

Recently I received a comment and curiosity regarding my website. I decided to post them along with my response.

Comment and curiosity:
I did enjoy reading your website. As I was reading I wondered if the philosophies change according to regional or from country to country or even religious denominations? I also was wondering if your consultations are done with well known companies? I am a critical thinker not to be confused with negative thinker and my curiosity was piqued.

Thank you for your kind acknowledgement!

I appreciate your curiosity. The attrition rate for genuine curiosity itself warrants quantities of curiosity from each of us. Author Tom Robbins’ phrase “Vatican thought police” may point to one of the many unscrupulous culprits imposing their genocidal bent on curiosity. I fear that there are many unmarked graves concealing the remains of formerly active curiosity.

My interest revolves around energetic curiosity rather than thought-based curiosity. These two processes and skills are entirely distinct: the former unlimited and the only authentic and true catalyst of change. The latter receives more credit than is its due. Nonetheless, compassionately intelligent thought-based curiosity can be catalytic. It is often necessary in moving one toward and into genuine energetic curiosity.

I too appreciate the distinction you offer vis-a-vis negative thinking. Itself a plague on the Earth!

Regarding well known companies. Generally no. A few are multinationals: One, a household name operating world wide. Two operate on four continents. Another, involves thirty-five countries. Another operating throughout the EU. And, one operating in the USA from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean. However, that is a bit of grandstanding on my part. Most of my client organizations are small. Too, I have worked with governmental entities in the States, at all levels of governance, and with not-for-profits and NGOs.

Regarding whether my philosophies change regionally or from country to country, or even with differing religious denominations…I love this question!

The short answer is no, and for this reason. The models I use regard the origins of difficulties people experience to arise from a single source: An intended “built-in” bug in the operating system or hardware a person comes with. The bug bears a positive life-affirming intent and is itself a positive process for a human being. To me, the origin of an individual’s issues are distinct from genetics and culture. They are however symbiotic, as they incubate in the context of family and culture.

What is required of me is to meet people in the dignity, beauty and innocence of the Human Heart, and, too, to meet them intellectually. When I am successful in this, together we can begin the process of going beyond the familial, cultural, religious – and those stories of one’s personal history. In the process I need honor one’s respective narrative, yet, unless I assist them to change how they define themselves, to change, too, their personal cosmologies, and then to locate themselves beyond the myriad of their local pseudo-identities – the one’s they believe themselves to be – I help no one. I am but wasting their life and my own.

A good teacher must meet people where they are and then take them where they could or would not have gone on their own.

I trust there are threads of coherence here.

Thank you again for your curiosity! I wish you well!

Outgrown Clothes

(First posted June 15th, 2012)
Recently I was given a lovely, humbling, and hilarious insight. This good fortune presented itself while awaiting a Cyprus bound flight from London’s Gatwick Airport. First the images: I watched a thirty-five year old man who was entirely uncon

scious of his actions: He, in feigned, affected, noisy and labored breathing ‘in a breathless state’ moved in an asymmetrical and slow, attention-gathering gallop as he approached the gate where I stood.

As he pounded his national identity card and boarding pass to the counter, he spoke dramatically in an English that bore the lovely accent of his native country. He requested immediate assistance as he had missed his flight from a nearby gate. In response to each of four kindly delivered responses from the gate agent, he loudly exhaled an exasperated NO! She then informed that no matter how many times he made his pronouncements, circumstances remained the same: Her help is that of directing him to the airline service counter for rebooking.

The man then moved from the counter, stopping in the center of the aisle. He thrust his ID card and boarding pass to the floor and while loudly exhaling, further collapsed his shoulders. There he stood with his head hanging in seeming profound disbelief at his fate. Just two steps away, I, barely containing the incredulity of my insight, and my urge to laugh more audibly, stepped to his left side and stood mimicking his posture. In a couple moments, I turned my head toward him and in a quiet and dramatic voice said, so only he could hear, “Its fucked isn’t it?” I remained a moment longer, then slowly stood more upright…then slowly and silently walked away. Seconds later he collected his things and did the same.

My insight: I do what this man does all the time. I do it differently, of course. Yet, I too, have many unconscious habits of behavior, each with dramas large and small. Mine revolve around being impatient or being in a hurry. After all, I have so many things to do. I often move fast. I am in a hurry.

As I write this, there is a humor surfacing in me that is a blending of at least three mental and emotional states. The first is a delight in my new awareness. The second involves a bit of disbelief for the silliness of my little dramas, and for not having recognized them previously. Lastly, I feel chagrin. The second and the third are themselves examples – equivalences, though less visibly dramatic than the man’s actions in the airport.

As I rotate the prism of my perception, three perspectives vie for my attention. The first involves what I judge as the normalcy of our all too human obliviousness and somnolence: our insistence on remaining imprisoned by trivialities, on remaining dead asleep. The second angle prompts a warm compassion in seeing the plight of my own and others’ humanity. The last view prompts a remembering that I am best served when I see the humor in my own petty dramas, then let them go.

Our dramas perpetuate an embodiment of our having said ‘no’ to our lives and the Mystery. We can ill-afford to continue denying our sovereignty and the experience, expansion and creative expression awaiting us. Life asks us to announce, in an unequivocal and robust voice, ‘yes’ to the Mystery! And then to live out our lives embodying this ‘yes’ – taking all that life offers.

What will rouse me from my sleep?
What will prompt the letting go of my petty and distracting dramas?
What will move me to say ‘yes’ to my life?
What will open me to genuinely experience the immediacy of the Mystery and my life?
What will foster the expansion of my genuine nature?
What will prompt my genuine creative expression?

What I Am Learning

(First posted September 13th, 2011)
I had the delightful privilege of receiving a lovely letter via Spiritual Networks. In it there was a question asked of me. My response follows.

I am delighted to receive the bundle of energy that is yourself and your promise (These things are imbued in your note). To me this is the dominant message in your writing. Feeling your heart energy buoys me.

I, like you, find it pleasing to meet energetic siblings on awakening’s path. You are correct, no one is alone, ever! Yet we humans benefit from reminders.

Wow! Your question! I am intrigued with your curiosity! Now to your question: “Out of all your years of teaching, what would you say is the most important thing you have learned?”

The most important thing I have learned is that we (humanity, you and I) are not what or who we are purported to be. The dominant behaviors humanity exhibits have nothing to do with our actual character and true nature. Our ancestries, biographies and cultures fail in their characterization of us.

There is a yet to be expressed creativity and motion available within the precincts of the human heart awaiting our embodiment. There is the promise of our promise awaiting fulfillment. This is a place of creativity and motion. It lives within the human heart. Yes, of course, this is a place of fierce and nurturing love of self, other, the Earth and cosmos (in other words, the Mystery); yet is much more than this.

This place is a leaping off point. A point where each of us can experience worlds and realities beyond this one; and, with these experiences be changed. If you give yourself over to this point and the experiences it offers, you will change again and again. In the accumulation of these changes you may experience theplay casino whole of the multiplicity of universal places at once, experiencing yourself – as the gestalt.

The most important thing I have learned is that something beyond us is continually asking something of and from us. The opportunity of the human heart is to respond with an immediate and robust YES and move in response to the Mystery.

The most important thing I am learning involves each of us moving into the unity of our own sovereign divinity. This involves a letting go of the denial of our onboard capacities for seeing the Mystery for what it is: Our loving playground, our design studio.

The most important thing I am learning is that YES to the Mystery is the only path.

The most important thing I have learned is that survival of the ego, whether keeping your looking good looking good, or ensuring the survival of one’s physical body and one’s life, individually or collectively, are meaningless endeavors, really. (Yes, of course, maintain yourself.) However when the universe offers you a test or opportunity (whatever its form) an immediate yes is the only response that is life expanding, life affirming!

I think I am just beginning to approach the place of the most important thing I have learned – that of living the Yes to the Mystery. With this, moving into truly living my own life – rather than the one the world has given me. I am not there yet however this movement has begun in my system of “self.”

I will leave this for now.

And you my friend? Is this place all that much different from the places of your learning?

Feel free to redirect the question if you like.



“…Some Kiss We Want…”

(First posted July 19th, 2012)
“There is some kiss we want with our whole lives, the touch of spirit on the body…Seawater begs the pearl to break its shell…breathe into me…open the love window.” ~ Rumi

My neighbor teaches environmental studies at the local university. Recently he lent me the book entitledCollapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond. This is a research-based exploration of human actions involving past and contemporary societies that collapsed, and those that live on.

The author suggests that individuals and communities wanting to survive, persist, and at times thrive, are best served by living in accord with the “nature” of their Natural environments. Those living at odds, move through processes of human indecency, ugliness and starvation en route to their collapse, their deaths.

My work orients around the personal and spiritual ecology of individuals, and groups of people. As such, the book prompted a deeper inquiry into the “nature” of my Nature and how confluent my life is with it. I looked, too, into the “nature” of others’ Natures. As with geographical regions, there are patterns and generalizations that can be inferred regarding people too. Yet, like each locale, each person requires her or his own recipe for achieving and maintaining an ecology of one’s own.

Contrary to popular rhetoric, we do not live in a one-size-fits-all world. “Truths,” if there are any, are space/time/context specific. They are not transferrable. What is “real,” if there are “real” things, is not generalizable. The majority of us do not live in confluence with the “nature” of our individual Natures. Our cultures impede such things. Remedying our alignments are worthy and honorable endeavors. I suggest that we recognize that this epoch’s moment is inviting us to direct our intent and attentions to this end, living genuinely.

Diamond’s book also invites us to look at contemporary circumstances through a life and death lens and to do so personally, intimately. Are our actions but repeated patterns of those whose societies collapsed? The author suggests that our contemporary actions are not without precedent. I ask, are we blithely walking in lockstep with an age-old inherited ignorance?

Yet, this is not my point. We know these things. Our unconscious denial keeps this knowing from our conscious awareness. My points are:

1. Individual awareness precedes necessary collective action. With rigor, we can become aware and choose differently.
2. The manner in which we live today arises from an unwitting orientation that Life itself is a problem to be solved. As consequence, we have centered our lives in problems, and identified ourselves as problem solvers. This position and identity is antithetical to life.

A wise mentor of mine informs that opportunities arising from problems are themselves closing structures. In other words, the opportunities themselves collapse before bearing fruit. Pursuing them does not serve! Such pursuit but squanders our attentions and energies. In the context of problem solving, opportunities whose structures open, do not present themselves. These opportunities arise from orienting a life on the frontier of creative self expression.

One of the greatest boons in my life involves the humbling and life changing epiphany of discovering that I had positioned and identified myself as a problem solver – in my existence, not simply in my work. The design of my personality and the models around which I have orbited have had a problem solving bent. I am damn good solving problems. I find stellar and uncommon solutions.

My epiphany also revealed a richness that awaits from another mode of existing and living: that which results from orienting and moving in concert with a universal wisdom and intelligence that I creatively express in my life. This involves embodying the Muse herself. This birthright is inclusive. Everyone can get not only a visa but a residency card for these places.

Collapses in our societal structures are natural outcomes of collapses to our individual internal structures. Neither Life nor people are problems! Life is expressive motion. Our lives are expression. We ourselves render them elegant, gracious, aesthetic, or not.

In my earlier post “Perspective Shift” of 21 May 2012, I wrote about our internal nemeses, those aspects of our personalities rendering ourselves our own worst enemies. This post is an entry into a mini-series of posts in which I offer models and skills for freeing ourselves from the ancestral and cultural constraints, those which our individual nemeses perpetuate within each of us.

Course Correction

(First posted September 17th, 2011)
There is an intended humorous maxim some men occasionally espouse: “I did not receive the technology gene.” This line is used during moments when a man need bring himself to bear in technological contexts – those for which he is ill-prepared. I never liked the damn phrase, yet it comes to mind here/now. I am mostly clueless in these contexts. Whether I have the gene or not, I neither know nor care. I suspect this maxim is but shelter for those of us opening to being wholly okay with oneself. This maxim is warranted until it is not.

Please bear with me. (Maybe you too wonder whether posting this is a necessary self-deception.) I online casino am learning that cutting and pasting posts from word processors and text editing software into WP skews formatting hugely. Having only this week migrated my website to WP, most of the content in both requires translation into WP speak. Soon, things will be in order. Too there will soon be more articles, poetry and stuff arriving.

Thanks for indulging this one”s ongoing course corrections.

Jump Rope, Jacks and Stickball

(First posted July 27th, 2012)
The great anthropologist Angeles Arrien reminds us that we Westerners conceptually frame, and experience change as loss. She used an example that most Americans could relate to. It went something to the effect: A friend asked another “I hear your

relationship is changing?” The other, in a concerned voice, responded “Oh my God! What have you heard?” Those of us in her workshop laughed in recognition of our pattern.

I love what Dr. Arrien gives us. Her work has contributed to me professionally and personally. I no longer agree with the inferences I once drew from my understandings of Westerners linking change with loss. I once believed I needed to break the connection of change with loss. That I needed, instead, to understand the reality that change is constant. It is always occurring and I need not associate it with loss.

I know the constancy of change. Yet, I think differently now. Change is loss, and much more. Although we are politically correct in using the word “loss” via-a-vis change, it is the wrong word to use. It is a softener, ostensibly making our lives easier. Yet it does not. The word “loss” misrepresents and distracts us from the direct and raw experience of what is actually happening and what it offers us. The word “loss” takes us away from the experience that will best grow, move and change us. So too does the word “change.”

We Westerners cringe even more strongly with the word I am about to use, the word that can move us toward and into the experience that serves our becoming: This word is death. Change is death. Death is what is happening in every change. Death is the constant in our lives. Death and life are one indivisible whole. We do not recognize the experience of death for we have been taught to distract from it. We fool ourselves pretending to attend to death, but we are instead attending to loss. The energy of death differs from the energy of loss. Experiencing loss in our lives changes us less beneficially than the giving of ourselves over to experiencing the many deaths occurring constantly in our daily lives.

Whether the deaths involve a hoped for future, a change in dinner plans, the death of a loved one, or the change in a summer day from one of warm sunshine to an approaching rain storm with thunder and lightening – like the one happening as I write this piece – death is occurring. Today’s sunny day is dead. What lives here, now, is an increasingly darkening sky with significantly cooler temperatures and blowy winds. A lovely death, and a new birth.

What I invite is this:

  • Consent to change. Consent to death. Say YES to the changes death brings us in each moment.
  • Experience the psychology and physiology of loss when it arrives, yet, know, too, that these experiences are distinct from experiencing the phenomena, the empirical rawness of death. It is this experience of death that changes us in beneficial ways.

Years ago the anthropologist and author Carlos Castaneda introduced us to his take on the ancient wisdom of Mexico. One of his invitations involved having death sit on our shoulder. He was fostering the beginnings of our developing a consciousness of death. One that would enable us to more fully live. Few if any of us have done so.

I, myself, have no death consciousness. I sense however it is wanting its place in me.

A Friend Leaves the Planet

(First posted October 9th, 2011)

On September 29, 2011, General Aviation lost a stellar, yet, unspoken hero. So too did the communities who loved him. Though insufficiently acknowledged, Bill Warren was the chief diplomat, emissary and envoy of the Spirit of Flight. He was born in Port Angeles, Washington on October 13, 1946. His family’s farm was under the flight path for the local airport. Ronn Dilling, Bill’s first cousin, reports that ever since Bill was three years old he gave his attention to airplanes and flying. As a child, if Bill was not watching planes from the farm, he was at the airport.

At eight years old Bill’s family moved to Medford, Oregon. He became a fixture at its airport. Bill first held the controls of an airplane, in flight, at age ten. From that moment, flying became the center of his life. Bill was fifteen when he got his private pilot certificate. Save for a brief stint in a city Parks Department, Bill’s career was aviation. He flew every type of aircraft except jets. It is said, if a plane can be started, Bill could fly it.

Whether flying Mercy flights, dusting crops and local orchards, providing air support for wild land fire suppression, dispersing airport fog, or shuttling planes, Bill was the one for the job. So too, he performed aerobatic stunts in the movies, founded a flying circus in which he designed and performed previously unseen aerobatic maneuvers. He was one of the main attractions in regional air shows in the lower forty-eight and Alaska.

Bill trained new pilots and tested those with experience as they sought new ratings and to maintain current certifications. Too, Bill provided flight knowledge training courses at Rogue Community College. Over the course of his career, Bill experienced nineteen engine failures – each time – through deploying his keenly developed attention, knowledge and behavioral skills rendered nineteen successful landings.

Bill Warren was out of sync with modern aviation. He seemed better suited for flying with the legendary French pilot and author Antoine De Saint-Exupery – or better still, being a character in one of his novels. Too, Bill’s soul was a contemporary of author and pilot Richard Bach.

Although Bill owned many airplanes his plane of choice was a 1946 Taylorcraft. Like himself, the T-Craft was lightweight and free from contemporary excesses. Flying a T-Craft, he would say made necessary that a pilot be a Pilot, god damn it. A T-Craft is affected by the subtlest movements of air. It’s just a big kite. You cannot power your way through anything – the pilot has to fly and fly well!

But for a few, all gauges and instruments were concealed and unreadable in Bill’s plane. To him, autopilot, GPS, and speed indicators were the pernicious bane of General Aviation. Pilots need to feel the tiniest motion of the weight shifts in their body…their body informs the pilot moment to moment of how the flight is progressing, how the plane is performing, and when to apply the controls. This is flying.

Bill was adamant that people already know how to fly! He would point to birds of prey riding the thermals and say – we are made of what they are made of. What is in them is in us, god damn it! Stop thinking and feel. You KNOW how to fly! Yes, he would say, there are things you need to learn to pass the test. And, there are things you need to know to be safe, but you already KNOW how to fly! Everyone does! Now, go over there and catch those thermals and get some altitude without having to work for it, god damn it!

Bill’s plane was named Simply Magic. She knew how to fly. Let the plane do her work, he would say. Stop over-controlling the plane. The pilot’s job is to relax and pay attention to the energy you are feeling in your body. It will tell you everything. Scan for other planes noticing too the altimeter and compass. Listen to the sound of the engine, and, in a relaxed way, gently slowly make what corrections are needed. Let the plane fly itself. It has much to teach us.

Those of us in Bill’s world could not – not – love him. It was simply impossible. Yet, he was often oblivious to the fact that his disdain for conformity, specifically to social contracts of interaction, was, at times, difficult for others. There are those who permanently closed their hearts to him. Bill could be a pain in the ass. Although Bill loved women, he did not protect them from the aspects of men that are best reserved for the company of men.

So too, Bill could be ornery in the way a wizard would be: messing with people to tease them – to shake them from their foibles. Women tell me he was naughty. I believe them. He fancied raising a Rolling Rock beer as oft as he could.

I read some place that some heroes need be defined by their greatness rather than their foibles. I contend this is the case for each of us. This is so regarding Bill Warren. His staggering genius, talent and abilities as a pilot and flight instructor are overshadowed by two other qualities of character. One: The profoundly delightful light of his heart – albeit issuing from behind turbulent life circumstances. Two: his profound respect, appreciation and love for children and young people.

The buoyancy of Bill’s heart and his work with young ones are his magnum opuses! Children and young people knew that Bill saw them! They knew he loved them! They knew he empathized with their circumstance! They knew they belonged in the world when with Bill! Lastly, they knew they were safe with Bill and from him!

Bill Warren, you have my love and deepest respect! I trust you are fog free and aloft in smooth air. I am privileged, heartened and changed – bettered – for having known and learned from you. So long my friend. Oh, one last bit: A poem.

Late Fragment

And did you get what 
you wanted from this life even so?
I did.
And what did you want?
To call myself beloved, to feel myself
beloved on the earth.
             ~ Raymond Carver


(First posted September 15th, 2012)
Acting out of character, I finished my sunrise walk by nipping in for a latte. The woman making it was in the her in-between years – her transition from girl to adult. Though lovely physically, her real beauty lay in her presence – that radiating diaphanous field in motion around her body and personality. Yet, it was shadowed by what I saw as a dissonance with and a remoteness from her promise. A counterfeit compassion surfaced in me.

In acknowledging her color choice in scarves, she replied “That’s helpful this morning.” Her response to my query about her morning of “still waking” was almost convincing. I wondered whether she was persuaded.

Walking onward enjoying the places the latte’s flavors took me, I ruminated about how we can begin seeing and acknowledging others, such that they recognize their place and promise – a seeing which fosters their confidence to live well the true nature of their own natures, to be genuine in the creative expression of their daily lives, to reveal themselves – their degrees of difficulty on their journeys, and their joys.

I then thought of a business guy I liked and respected. One who respects the fulfillment of my promise as I deliver elegant and ecological change to individuals and families. I then felt my discomfort as I sensed that he does not respect me personally. He sees more promise in me. This promise involves me articulating my work in ways which make it attractive to business and organizational leaders. He sees promises I have yet to deliver, those awaiting fulfillment.

As for my counterfeit compassion – it is my personal mask of grief regarding the distance I have kept from the rendering all of my promise. I felt gratitude for the reminder given by the young woman. Like her, others see through my ruses too. As to my query regarding how can I see others – it begins with the courage to see the greatness of my own self, to see the value in my creative expression – in its consequence – and to muster my courage and to act at the behest of my promise – and to do so now.

As to the criteria that would garner the businessman’s respect? They are but one possible map lending toward me delivering my promise. One worth modeling, not for his respect, but as a means for furthering my path and promise.

I am grateful for Life’s difficult and generous Grace.