Thursday, September 29, 2011

Woo-Woo in a Wow-Now World:
Living As a Practical Mystic

"Only those within whose own consciousness the sun rises and sets, the leaves burgeon and wither, can be said to be aware of what living is."

~ Joseph Wood Krutch, US naturalist and writer

What does being "conscious" actually mean? My online dictionary defines it as, "awake, aware, supraliminal…". Now there's a word to roll trippingly on the tongue. Supraliminal. It's the exact opposite of the subliminal media messages we're bombarded with daily.

Supraliminal means above the threshold of normal sensation. So, instead of being anesthetized by the jackhammer rhythm of life in the third millennium, a supraliminal person moves to a different cadence. You live an aesthetic life — in tune with the beauty all around you — rather than an anesthetic one, numbed out on sensory overload and emotional angst. This is being conscious, and we get to choose whether to walk this path, every day.

It doesn't mean we have to live "woo-woo" in a wow-now world, however. There's a way to "walk the mystical path with practical feet," as one of my own great teachers, Angeles Arrien, often says. Her lucid book, The Four-Fold Way: Walking the Paths of the Warrior, Teacher, Healer and Visionary draws upon her vast experience as a cross-cultural anthropologist and educator to show us how indigenous wisdom can help us live richer, more joy-filled lives, both personally and professionally. The approaching winter season corresponds to the way of the Warrior, or leader, whose challenge is the right use of power. Angeles reminds us that Native peoples use the words "power" and "medicine" synonymously. If we fully express who we are, we are "in our medicine."

Earth herself offers us a bountiful opportunity to grow, by planting ourselves in presence. Louise Hay, in many ways the founding mother of the personal growth/self help movement, says being in nature, nurturing the soil, and growing her own food is a kind of meditation for her. She lived in New York City for forty years, so she knows what it's like in the asphalt jungle, and feels especially blessed to be able to garden on her acre of land in California now.

Louise says, "My garden sustains me a lot. It is nature at its most abundant and beautiful. And what I do primarily in the garden is build soil. I do everything that I can to make the soil better. I have a big chipper shredder, and not a lettuce leaf or a leaf from a tree leaves my property. It's all ground up, nature makes it into wonderful rich soil, and I put that back into the soil. And it's the same thing with the people, with their own lives. You know if you enrich yourself, if you pull the weeds out, if you get the rocks out of the way in your consciousness and enrich yourself with good reading, good study, good meditating, understanding — then life takes care of the rest."

As the Northern Hemisphere turns inward now, it's a good time to compost any aspects of ourselves that no longer support who we're becoming. And perhaps, as we continue to build our inner soil, enrich our soul, and live a more conscious life, we'll also lose our fear of the next threshold.

Awareness Into Action:

What practical steps can you take this week to build your own soil, to live your medicine? Choose a specific action and put it into practice with everyone you meet, all week long.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Lightworkers As Light Anchors

As we in the Northern Hemisphere enter our Fall Equinoctial gateway this weekend, we're also entering the end of time: the Ninth (and final) Wave of the Mayan Calendar concludes on October 28, 2011, according to Mayan scholar Carl Calleman's research. Then what?

Equinoxes, when day and night are of equal length, are all about balance. This one is also about deep integration, beauty, and yes, despite outer appearances, peace. One of the best ways to bring more of these attributes into your life now is to see yourself as an anchor of light, itself an oxymoron. Yet this is the moment when all paradoxes coalesce into perfect sense.

Cosmic weather reporter Irma Kaye Sawyer introduces the designation, Light Anchor: someone who is "grounded, yet familiar with travel in 4/5D states, either to share energy (as a healer), information, or both. Light Anchors usually have Sun in an Earth Sign, and/or predominant earth planets, but this is not always the case. Their job through the Shift is to 'hold down the fort' (they like that term!) and create a safe space for people to awaken to their own light resources. Most of our spiritual visions are seen in our meditation time. Many Light Anchors are Adult Indigos (1st and 2nd wave) and also 'Wizards' who are in their late 60s all the way to their 80s now. Light Anchors often work with words to convey their messages and can serve as teachers, writers and channels."

In nautical terminology, a light anchor, or kedge, is used to help turn a ship around. The flip side, an anchor light, indicates a vessel is stationary; not under power. And while it's gratifying to anchor the Light, right now many of us seem keen to sing, "Anchors Away!"

So yes, balance is key, along with acute creativity. A very early name for my work, before Live Your Light, was Metamorphosis: The Center for Creative Change. Astrologer Allison Rae offers a potent look at creative change this Equinox weekend, in the form of 100,000 Poets for Change, who are creating social artistry via global public readings, demonstrations, concerts and vigils.

We each have the choice and opportunity now to become social (r)evolutionaries: light anchors for an emerging world.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Radical Evolution: Commemorating 9-1-1

[My follow-up to "This IS A Test!" sent later the week of 9/11/01:]

Dear Ones,

We stand at a crossroads in our evolution. The old structures have been shattered, in every sense. What will we build from the ashes, now?

We could choose to dive deeper into polarity, into us versus them, and vote for war. Has this approach worked in the past? Does it further our growth as a species? Think about it: the U.S. has spent vast amounts of time and money on space exploration. Suppose we actually were to make contact with a race of advanced extraterrestrial beings. How interested might they be in fostering relations with a planet whose inhabitants still resort to killing one another as a means of resolving their differences?

We are all cells in the body of Gaia, our Earth Mother. If we view life in this way, the attacks in New York and Washington become like a cancer assaulting our collective body. Cancer cells have lost the ability to cooperate with other cells for the greater good of the whole. Yet malignancy does not arise in an instant; it builds over a period of time. If we plunge ahead intent only on annihilating the "cancer," we will also destroy healthy cells, and possibly the entire body of humanity and all other species. Unless we heal the root causes of this illness - our collective shadow, our pain, our perceived separation from one another - it will recur in another form down the road. How do we do this?

Nationalism, while a natural response in such a crisis, is not the complete answer. Internationalism is. Vietnamese Zen master and peace activist Thich Nhat Hahn, who has been living in exile from his homeland for 35 years, speaks eloquently of how we "inter-are" with all life. Interdependence is the key to ending the exile for all of us. We are all responsible to and for one another.

Can we now be courageous enough, can we open our hearts wide enough (courage means "of the heart") to choose to grow beyond our grief and outrage at this critical time? Will we look at the lifelong habits that have created this dis-ease, and begin to make global "lifestyle" changes that will help us return to harmony?

In "Letters to a Young Poet," Rainer Maria Rilke counsels, "Perhaps everything terrible is in its deepest being something helpless that wants help from us." To meet our indescribable suffering and fear with an outstretched heart is a faithwalk. The Bible tells us that faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Substance means that which stands under you, "sub" and "stance", and this is also the definition of understanding. That which stands under you; what you know, from inner wisdom, to be true. So as we grow in consciousness, in understanding, as we walk more and more on faith, the light of compassion will become the ever-present substance of our lives. We will begin to recognize it as the light shining forth from within our own souls.

Reclaiming is a key word for now. We can choose to compost our violence into the rich soil of compassion (literally, "to suffer with") as a new way of reclaiming our Earth body, and our relationships with one another. Soul/sole/soil are related in meaning, as are whole/holy/heal. Touching the Earth, our collective and only home, with compassion, we live into our soul's purpose more deeply. As we get the "whole" picture, we become more whole, holy, healed; more One with the All. From this soil teeming with understanding, forgiveness and love, we may cultivate a culture in which we are all welcomed home. Atonement is at-one-ment.

This is radical evolution.

Individually and collectively, we have the power. What do we want to stand for, to walk on as the essence of our substance, now? In "The Little Prince," Antoine de St. Exupery reminds us, "It is only with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye." This is the strongest co-creative moment in human history. We stand at a crossroads. We can choose radical evolution, a new direction predicated on wisdom, by using the eyes of the heart.

In the Light, Love and Truth of who we are,

This IS A Test: Commemorating 9-1-1

[My first posting from 9-11-01]:

This IS A Test!

Dear Ones,

We are six days from September 17th, a date heralded as being an opportunity for planetary initiation. An initiatory crisis, personal or global, catapults us out of our prior way of life in an instant, and demands a creative response born of trust in the process. Crisis actually means "turning point," as well as opportunity. So while this morning's air attacks on key U.S. "nerve centers" (the World Trade Center Towers and the Pentagon) surprise me only in terms of form, the actions themselves were, in a sense, predictable. It was only a matter of when. The time is NOW. The question is, how will we (the United States, and the world) respond?

I believe it was Einstein who said, you can not solve a problem with the same level of thinking that created it. From stunned pain, shock and anger, the instinctive response is retaliation. The first person I talked with today, upon hearing the news, spoke of hoping the President would threaten a nuclear attack. This would clearly be the end of life as we know it.

Later, as I listened to reports on radio, I was struck once again by how rapidly people always pull together in an emergency to help one another. Tragedy is a great leveler. We all do need to come together, not to fight a common enemy (which is within) but to begin creating the Global Community we've been inching towards for decades. It's a spiritual emergency, as we emerge from the cocoon of complacency, the old paradigm, into a courageous new world.

We must now choose to go beyond the old, reptilian, limbic brain (the same impulse that drives materialism, separation, self-interest, and misuse of power) into the higher realms of consciousness, where love, wisdom and power are synthesized into service. This is a test of the highest order. It's not about who's at fault, who orchestrated the attacks, or whether we should now place sanctions against the Middle East or other groups. It's about recognizing this attack for what it is: a colossal wake-up call.

This event is a volcanic eruption, and in hindsight, the rumblings many of us have been experiencing the past few weeks presaged it. Several players on the path have been sharing stories of total strangers (as well as of acquaintances and friends) suddenly, savagely and inexplicably dumping truckloads of mental trash on them. Everyone has been feeling "the quickening" of these end times, but, since we're at different stages in our growth, those who have no context for what they're experiencing also don't know what to do with these volatile energies. The anger's been leaking out, and finally, here's the explosion.

It is, in a very real sense, a planetary birth process. Something old has to die in order for the new to emerge. Please understand, I am not in the least condoning the tremendous loss of lives or the tragedy itself, yet I do feel that some major catastrophe to serve as a worldwide summons to awareness was cued to occur. It also took place on a Tuesday, which correlates astrologically with Mars, the God of war. We are all learning how to transform the war within ourselves into spiritual warriorhood.

It is interesting that the attack on the Pentagon made it impossible for U.S. officials to meet in the Department of Defense, the War Room. Our old defenses have been dismantled, big time and instantly.

Consider, too, that the Pentagon is a five-sided structure. There's a lot of power in five, which configures a star. The number five, as the center of the Native American medicine wheel, signifies the place of transformational possibilities. Five symbolizes access to the Spirit world in the Mayan tradition. It is a unifying element in Tibetan culture. The Greeks called the fifth element quinta essentia, the pure and concentrated essence, or invisible connector that allows earth, fire, water and air to communicate. Five is, cross-culturally, a centering and balancing element. Think of the alchemical phoenix that could arise from this apparent tragedy…

The 13th century Sufi mystic Rumi wrote, "Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and right doing, there's a field. I'll meet you there." This is the field of higher mind, of creative possibility, of the One Love. The moment is now. This is a call to conscious unity. Sisters and Brothers of the Light, please join me.

May this Invocation, sent out from World Goodwill in New York City to commemorate World Invocation Day, June 5, 2001, inspire and support you now. Many blessings and much love to you all, Amara.

The Great Invocation

From the point of Light within the mind of God
Let Light stream forth into human minds.
Let Light descend on Earth.

From the point of Love within the Heart of God
Let love stream forth into human hearts.
May the Coming One return to Earth.

From the center where the Will of God is known
Let purpose guide all little human wills—
The purpose which the Masters know and serve.

From the center which we call the human race
Let the Plan of Love and Light work out
And may it seal the door where evil dwells.

Let Light and Love and Power restore the Plan on Earth.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Living On the Edge

My longtime friend and What Shines subscriber Paul White is somewhat clairvoyant and clairsentient. He's written before about extraordinary experiences that dovetailed with my newsletter posts, such as this, on seeing Beyond Visible Light.

The current issue is entitled Edge Dwellers, and deals with what it means to live edgy during these emergent times. Paul sent me this email today:

"This is really incredible. The day before you sent What Shines I had a dream that I enticed someone to come to the edge of a cliff. I then grabbed their arm, pulled, and we both fell off the cliff. I remember the first instance of falling: there was fear; it was a long way to the bottom. But then I really looked at where we were going: there was plenty of time to think. By some miracle or inspiration we started to fly. We flew over a town and started to gain altitude. The last thing in the dream that I remember was going into some clouds and the light.

Pretty cool huh?"

And I concluded the newsletter with this invocation, from Apollinaire:

"Come to the edge,
He said.
They said,
We are afraid.
Come to the edge,
He said.
They came.
He pushed them ... and they flew."

We are all One mind, linked by Spirit! Find your glowing edge, dearhearts, and take flight — because you can.