Friday, February 25, 2011

Who is Love?

I had a very powerful experience the other day. I have an eye condition that has been troublesome for a number of years. I found out that day that the condition had been misdiagnosed. If it had been correctly diagnosed, there was treatment that depends on catching the condition early. The chances of it being successful now are greatly reduced. I came home and was crying in frustration and fear. My daughter put her arms around me and place my head on her shoulder, kissed me and spoke very reassuringly to me. I was aware in the moment that she was mothering me in a way I had never been mothered and have worked very hard to try to bring that level of love to her. I experienced pure love entering my body in such a pristine and complete way as I have rarely experienced in my life. It was the day after temple so my sense is that the transformation from the day before literally blew out some circuits, making more space for love to reveal itself. The sensation was absolutely indescribable except to say within minutes all upset and concern had left my body. That is the power of love.
It is so easy to jump from there to a certain conclusion- that my daughter, age 10, gave me love that I didn’t have. I believe this is where we form the mistaken belief that the source of love is outside ourselves. Now I would say that she awakened the love that was temporarily dormant inside me.
Just recently I wrote that I had the belief I wasn’t loved. What nonsense! That is ridiculous. It is clear that a number of people love me deeply. The truth is that the belief I need to release is about the source and the location, if you will, of love. I have always believed the source is outside of me which is what makes it terrifying to consider that nectar of life being removed from me. It makes me powerless and a victim because anyone at any time could yank my chain. If life hadn’t forced me to look at this, I would have sailed merrily along collecting love from others and ensuring as best I can that they never pull their love. This leads me to inauthenticity and powerlessness. Damn, another solution down the drain. I’m being forced on my knees to go further. As of a few hours ago, I am glad. Before that I was internally cursing and screaming, “Enough already.” I would have gratefully stopped short of a complete resolution.
Since I have declared myself as ready to clear ALL obstacles to Love, apparently it is part of my soul plan to not let me rest short of recognizing mySelf as the source of Love in my life. Where’s the treasure?- like all the myths, fairytales and fables tell us- within.
I am the only one who can recognize that truth and the only one who can block it too. 
Now I have read this forever yet it is not until I investigated and discovered this within my direct experience that it has begun to drop more. It has taken a huge amount of suffering for me to genuinely shift off the “special relationship” plan, where I make my special one the source of love in my life, as explained in Course in Miracles. I gave lip service to it yet it is only in the last week where my suffering reached maximum velocity that I truly was willing to give it up. So much of what I have read for years is dropping in, below the level of thought.
It’s all too new to really translate into words yet. And the truth is while I know where it is, I usually don’t feel it without the activating influence of another, yet I am now back to bulldog on pork chop mode, following the scent of Love back to the source. A deep feeling of peace pervades me as I begin to excavate my trust and faith that this is not random cruel idiocy guiding me, that there really Is something beyond my petty little ego that I can access continuously. I am being forced to explore my lack of faith, my inability to trust complete in the Universe, Source, the Divine, call it what you will. At least now I am truly willing.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Embracing the knife- where is Love?

Whoa! The energy is up for me and running probably my second deepest charge and source of suffering in my life. I have sought my whole life to heal this one- the belief that I am not loved, that I need someone outside of me to give me love or I don’t have it. I have spent most of my life trying to secure what the Course in Miracles calls a special relationship, where you make another your Source. This is my greatest oppotunity. I have healed so many huge challenges over the years yet this one alludes me, still drops me into the pit. My other huge source of suffering was fear. I had life long anxiety and despite years of therapy, workshops, training etc. it remained. Life forced me to take it on some years ago and I lived in terror for months. It took me some years of concentrated effort but I finally healed it and now I am seldom anxious- what a relief!!!! Little charges, like the one I had with homework I can clear in a day or week. But this one- a life time and it still has me by the throat. 
So this is what I have come to. Despite teaching and preaching this stuff for years, I still have never fully done this- embrace what is, even when what is is tremendous sorrow or suffering. I can dive into the little stuff but with the huge, I am going to die, charges I still sometimes run for cover. I have know for about a year that I have to embrace the knife, truly surrender to the isness of the excruciating pain of believing another is the source of love in my life.  Believe me, I’d never let it go if the pain wasn’t getting too great to hold on to. The Universe has kindly decided to kick my ass until I let go. So I’m screaming “I get it, I get it.” but apparently not enough. The whole world supports the belief that another is where love is at. Since I have been watching this pattern, I have witnessed how often it is  portrayed in movies, books, conversation. No wonder I fell for it. No more.
Now I’ll admit that there is still a big part of me that hopes by giving it up, I’ll get it. And I won’t lie, what I desire more than anything is what the Course in Miracles calls holy relationship. I can not imagine leaving life without being in relationship where I give my love fully and receive it back in equal measure, where I adore and cherish another fully and am cherished and adored. I have come closest in my relationship with my daughter who has been one of my greatest love teachers. Her ability to extend love, to forgive, to stay present continues to astound me. Her unconditional love as an infant and toddler was probably the most healing experience of my life. That is why for years my plan was to have a child every five years to always stay in that energy of bliss. It was a huge bummer for me that I didn’t have the energy and had to find another way. In my other relationships I am making great progress but the gap between what I know and how I always behave or perceive continues to create anguish.
Last year I had the opportunity to directly experience in my body the pain of judgment, both to judge or to be judged. That pain was finally able to allow me to release judgment entirely. I still have judgment come forward yet it is now below the level of thought. I am the judgment exterminator if it rises to the level of awareness because I have the physical experience of how painful they are. 
Now my big obstacle to love is seeing it as not residing in me.  That pain is continually present in my body lately. So they got me- I surrender. I had the blessing of allowing that charge fully in my body last night, supported by two gorgeous and generous temple sisters. They each gave up their turn so that I could complete the release. I allowed myself to dive deeply into the physical experience of that profound grief, of believing I am separate from Love. I sobbed, burned, hyperventilated, cried, shook, froze,  laughed, wept. They cuddled and whispered sweet nothings in my ears. They were angels that allowed me to dive to the depths. I experienced extreme dizziness, always a sign for me of a cellular level shift. I felt huge energy bursts running down my left leg for about twenty minutes. I felt a band of constriction across my back at the heart level that felt like a mild crucifixion, the image that kept coming to me. I allowed and surrendered, embracing the pain fully. Afterwards I was exhausted yet at peace.
My challenge now is to release my attachment to thinking I know what is best, to free myself from thinking that there is anyone one or anything that can keep me from Love. I see how that belief can terrorize me, make me mistrust, doubt there is any Divine force we can turn to. I see how many of us have the same gaping wound. I still can chicken out, duck and hide, yet sometimes I can embrace it fully, dive off the cliff and trust I will be held.

Friday, February 18, 2011

A dream come true- welcome!

Twenty countries are now present with this blog and we have such a rich, profound dialogue arising on my last blog. I have visited all but three of the countries present here- I have not been to Russia, Slovenia or South Korea. For the countries I have visited, it gives a deeper sense of connection, the sense of being a citizen of the world. For those I have not had the pleasure of experiencing in person, to have you visit here does give me a very satisfying feeling of interconnection. Please know how delighted I am you are all joining us. Feel free to add your questions, comments, insights. It has been my vision for some time to create a space where we can all be free to dialogue about what is most important to me- love so this is a dream come true. I can feel how many of you share my passion to live in love and clear all obstacles to it. Such a wonderful feeling of unity. Welcome!

Monday, February 14, 2011


Happy Valentine's Beloved Soul Friends!
Today is the day set aside to honor love. We send flowers and chocolates to celebrate life's most important value. We immortalize romance and maybe even check our love scales asking how are we doing in the love department? Are we being given enough love? Most of us hope to be showered with the stuff and maybe feel a bit sad if no one bothers. Yet part of the benefit of traipsing through hell last year was beginning to question what love is.
Now for years, O.K., my whole life I assumed love is something you get and give. I am happy if I get more or about the same as I give and a bit pissed off/upset if I get less. Then I share my needs and you better meet them if we are in a loving relationship or else. Of course, a lot of my needs aren't crucial so now, being so mature, I can let those go. But what feel like core needs, that you show me you love me and it better be the way I say it should look, no way Jose am I letting those go without a fight. Well, I can't help but notice it ain't going all that great even on those key needs. Because I can't help but witness that sometimes someone else can meet them and sometimes they might just not feel like it. And I notice I can sometimes meet the needs of others with joy and grace and sometimes I can't. So what's the deal? Now I am left without? That's no fun.
So we've heard it over and over, love is who we are, the treasure is within. Don't look where you can't find it. Yet our whole culture celebrates the romantic view of love. Give it to me or I am empty. Take it from me and I must grieve if I really love you. Hum. What I notice is then I am back in puppet-land  victimville. At any moment my Beloved can jerk my chain and put me in pain. Hum? Doesn't sound very liberating.
My Beloved better never be in a bad mood. My offspring better never be mercurial because it might hurt my feelings. Hum? How do I love and get out of this pickle?
I read something the other day that blew me out of the water. I tried to re-find  the quote and was frightened when I couldn't locate it as it had created a mind-quake. Found it, get ready. Lester Levenson says in the Ultimate Truth, “You will discover that happiness-your happiness, equates to you capacity to love, and conversely, all your miseries equate to your need to be loved.” What????? I thought that was the name of the game. If I am truly honest, haven’t I often been playing the tit for tat game; you give me some love and then I’ll give you some but don’t you dare yank your love or I’ll dump you like a hot potato. I love you but if you are mean or cruel to me, I hate you. I can’t help but recognize that doesn’t feel very loving. But this blows the lid on what I thought love was; no more romance and flowers as the foundation of love? If I had read that quote a year ago, I would either just have been confused or I would have skipped over it. But this last year has made me humble and hungry. I am ready for the real thing. Since I know intellectually it is within me and I can’t be separated from it, apparently it is time to walk my talk. So that means when my Beloved doesn’t want to meet my needs, I don’t even feel sad. I accept it out of the fullness of my being and move on, meet my own need, opps, don’t even have any needs, ideally, that I expect someone else to meet. Not to have needs is not to be human.  Obviously I am not there yet but now I get the game. The game is to meet my own need for love by always adoring myself and let the love spill over, creating a love wave that always returns to me. Now I can’t help but see I keep lifting the bar on love. Just do this one thing with me and I’ll feel loved. Well, now I am use to that, so just one more thing. I recognize I only do that in what the Course in Miracles calls my “special relationship," the one I put all my eggs in, the one that makes me feel safe and loved. The rest of you I can give more breathing room.
Yes, this is my central issue, the one I was born to heal. Each of us comes in with our own special flavor of believing something outside of ourselves is causing us to suffer. I am ready to let them all go. So that means when Beloved chooses not to meet my needs, I feel my stomach drop out, tears come to my eyes and I allow that!! No story, no hatred, no judgment, no fire energy directed to them. Just allow, grieve how deeply I have believed I am not loved, give compassion to myself. I tell the truth about what I am feeling. And then I am free! I am not miserable. No one can yank my chain because I don’t have one. Yippee! Until then, I allow, allow, allow. 
I wrote in my first blog in November “Where’s the keys?” about my lived experience of KNOWING what I am writing about, KNOWING love as the ground of my being. I knew it for a few hours. The longest I have known it, with all my being, was about three days. I must accept that the KNOWING  comes and goes. I must accept that I still feel separation, a distance between me and love. I must love myself even though I can’t fully love. I guess that is what love is for me now, as they say, a journey without distance. I am glad I am not walking it alone.
The whole thing seems to be a giant paradox. What motivates us on the way is our need to be loved, our bottomless yearning. It prods and pokes us not to give up. Apparently at some point we really get it and feel whole, love flows and we no longer need it. Like is attracted to like and then we  are showered with love. It is my experience that the more I follow this way, the more that laughter, joy, connection, yes, even love is showing up in my life. Of course, I don’t stay in relationships where the other person is not interested in my needs and preferences, is unwilling to give or care for me. But I do not make another my Source. So I will use that carrot to keep me moving, knowing that when I finally get there, that which I have sought sometimes so desperately will be something I no longer need, rather something I am. Go figure. Like I always say, let’s ride the wave and enjoy it. 

Sunday, February 13, 2011


I belong to a group of women called temple. For me, it is extraordinary in that each woman shows up with the intention to be loving and present. Last week I had the gift of being honored by four women simultaneously. Four pairs of loving hands poured goodness into me, eight hands cherished me, caressing, stroking, hugging. I bathed in the adoration of sisterhood. How delightful! I could not help thinking afterwards how if each of us were treated like this regularly, from birth, all our challenges would disappear and we would have a world of peace.

When my friend had trouble commenting on my blog I realized others may be challenged too. If this is the case, you may email me your comments. The blog is growing all the time yet for now, while I am able to, I will post your comments for you. You may reach me at
I look forward to hearing from you.

Monday, February 7, 2011

liberating Eros

Last week I began a radical food plan. Since then, food plays a very small role in my life. For four days I was really suffering; hungry, depressed, grouchy. As I was detoxing and sugar was leaving my system, I really couldn’t remember what else was a source of pleasure in my life. Sad, I know. Yet it brought up some deep questions about what I truly value. I had to explore deeply how I had made sugar and food one of my major sources of enjoyment. Since then I’ve discovered something magical. Now it may not be news to many of you, yet to me it is a revelation.
For a few months my husband has been writing very erotic poetry about encounters with women he had when he was young. At first I felt mildly put off, jealous. Yet then I began to get curious and it awoke two powerful memories within me. The first was about a long term boyfriend and how I loved him passionately for years. I wrote a poem about it and remembered the shattering love I had for him. Yet I wrote it to reclaim my wholeness, to disidentify from how pathetically co-dependent I was. After my husband’s fourth or fifth erotic poem, I began to consider it from a different angle. I had been reclaiming myself yet disowning the passion, bliss-wrong! 
I remembered one of the most powerful experiences of my life. It lasted less than 24 hours and I recall it absolutely clearly many decades later. The energy I felt burning through me in that encounter,  is still so alive and vibrant today. I wrote a poem about it (below) and allowed myself to relive those ardent emotions. I was irresistibly drawn to this man. Even writing about it now I feel my body tingling all over, vibrating as I relive it. Before my husband wrote his poems, I would have felt guilty for those feelings. Yet writing about it freed a current of aliveness that swept me passionately through my day. My daughter and I went on a walk and everything was speaking to me. The clouds were magnificent, the trees were running sap through me, the pond was a source of golden light. (Photos from the walk are on Flickr). When I initially ended the poem, the last line spoke of my yearning to reconnect with that particular man. I realized that that was an error in thinking that has totally limited my life. I have tried to box eros into an acceptable container, made rules about where it can and can not appear. I have disowned my own life force, my chi, prana, whatever word you want to use. Allowed it here, not there. So I changed the last line and reclaimed that exuberance. It is mine, yours. It is a current electrifying our lives. It is everywhere and I need to let it free, take it out of the cage of old beliefs about loyalty and honor. I just read an article by Martha Beck that leads me to believe that it is common to assume we need to imprison passion/eros to be faithful. No! This ebullience is a gift to all around me as my husband’s increasing eros is a catalyst for more vivacity in me. IT CAN’T BE CONTAINED and I no longer want to try. Away with the rules and old beliefs! Let the mojo flow. Does that mean I don’t believe in monogamy-no. I do absolutely. It means that I want all the juiciness in life and it is all around me. Now I recognize more and more sources of pleasure. I have always celebrated beauty and texture, now I am also delighting in my creativity, anything that awakens a burst of passion. Of course sex is a primary outlet, yet I need not act it out to feel it! I can embrace it in so many moments of my life. I give credit to my husband for awakening me from those false beliefs- he woke up awhile ago. 
Several years ago I uncovered another belief that was zapping my life of any joy; I believed that life on earth was hard, a struggle, and I wanted to go home, beam off this delicious, gorgeous earth. Imagine what a downer that was! I have worked for years to release that and now nectar is gushing. Here is my poem honoring eros:
Super Chief
It was one day like any other
I sit eating the microwave chicken on plasticware
Glance up
Eyes catch and freeze
Across two tables our eyes meet and lock
Lightening flashes between us
I can not look down
My uniform no defense
I stare paralyzed
Heart pounding staccato rhythms
Mind blank
The dark landscape passes unheeded 
Mountains dim in the moonlight
The pull an ocean tide unstoppable sweeping me to dark water 
I want to rise and grab him
Meeting again after eons apart this stranger I never knew
My heart swears we’ve known each other across millennium 
I want to swim in his eyes and drown
Finally I remember who and where I am
I can not approach him
Know I’d be lost forever
Job hurtled away in impatience
I haul myself to the back of the train pacing
Forget my duties as supervisor of the staff
How can they quench this firestorm?
Stay in the back of the train
Afraid to actually come in range 
Sleepless I finally cross into dangerous territory 
Checking seats for his sleeping form
Breathless when I discover him
Peer at his hatcheck in the dim light
Going to Lamy, no doubt onto Santa Fe
Breath easier knowing we have almost 12 hours 
to be within a crossable distance of each other
Morning light I prowl
Steps jerky and controlled
Unable to cage myself any longer I rush through the train
He sits in the lounge car
Eyes penetrate
“I’ve been waiting for you” he says immediately 
We steal into a unoccupied room and talk for hours
Every secret revealed
The bond a connection solid as stone
One I have never known
The seconds tick away
Squeeze a lifetime into a few hours
Heart beats over 30 years later remembering
Molten gold pours through me in awe 
Trees, tunnels, mountains pass in a blur 
His stop approaches
I hit the ground with him
Every muscle straining to fly away together
My feet move after him
The call of job, boyfriend absolutely worthless
What stopped me
Question for years why I didn’t ask for phone or address
Yet still feel the connection across time and space
Now I pause and savor the nectar
Feel the magnetic pull of the moon
Delight in the cool slithering water
Expectant with wonder
Joy, dancing, poised to blossom in this moment

Friday, February 4, 2011

food, sugar and love

I was just watching a video clip from one of the co-founders of the school where I got my Master’s in Spiritual Psychology. She said something I had heard numerous times in school and still don’t REALLY understand or know how to do, “Healing is the application of loving to the place inside that hurts,” Mary said. What does that mean?#$%$^^#@% I understand in principal but what does that feel like in my body? How do I really do that?
Over the last year I have been witnessing how often I have been a puppet to love, willing to let it “bend me, shape me, anyway you want to, long as you love me, it’s all right.” Well basically that sucks but I am just  beginning to witness more fully how I then swing to robot woman. I put up the shield and let nothing penetrate. Good plan except for one tiny detail. When I say nothing penetrates, unfortunately that turns out to include the good stuff. So there I am stuck behind the wall, in frozen mode. No pain  but also no joy. Dang it, back to the drawing board.
So my quality this year is inner marriage, putting my relationship with myself first. Well, once I decide that the fact that I often eat out of integrity with my own well being became glaringly obvious- again. After years of failed diets I had kind of surrendered to overweight. Yet, now I can no longer carry the burden of betraying myself. I planned a full frontal assault and have gone on a very restrictive food plan (recognize I will no longer use the dreaded “D” word, die....t). The weight is falling off yet I am being forced to look at my love affair with food, especially sugar. I have had to explore how often I use food as a source of pleasure and comfort. O.K. I don’t feel loved right now, so me and my friend food will go off on a date. YUM!! Sometimes awareness is just a pain in the tush as I am forced to realize that strategy really doesn’t work. So where is pleasure, what really is love? How do we love without attachment?
How easily we are hurt by love. I recognize how often I can be grouchy with loved ones- because I‘m hungry, or scared, or sad or confused. So I lash out or maybe am just not available and I can witness how they seem to take it personally and feel unloved. Now for sure I can tell you I’ve done the reverse a million times. Someone I love is in a bad mood and acts cranky and I feel unloved. Or someone really doesn’t like or love me. So often then I go into robot woman who feels no pain and befriends sugar. Ah, if only it worked. Unzipping the fat suit forces me to feel all this goo. No wonder I armored up in the first place.
I know the answer is to love myself and feel the presence of the Divine within me. Yea, sure, that’s great when I do. Sometimes when someone appears to be unloving I laugh inside or out, at how absurd it is to believe that their feelings determine whether I am loved or not-crazy! I actually own my essence as love. But what about when I just feel a gap, an emptiness, confusion, doubt, fear. I reach for love and it doesn’t reach back. I feel nothing and food isn’t an option. What then?
For now, I can only trust that my internal guidance is on track and that I will emerge from the fog. That something beyond me is shepherding me in the right direction; that what happens is not random but actually supportive of my deepest intention. Sometimes my faith is as flimsy as a feather and I must go on without any handholds. Other times I am as certain as I can possibly be. To allow it all without turning to food, the times when I feel greatly loved and the times when I feel like a castaway, perhaps that is the way to apply loving to the place inside that hurts. Sure wish it felt more tangible.