how are you?

How are you? I really mean it. I would really like to know how you are.

Most times, we are asked how we are, and most of those who ask, don’t really want to hear a full answer. I do. When I ask, I really wish to know how someone is.

So…how are you? These are extremely unusual times we are living in. The opportunities before us are endless…even if we feel they are extremely limiting. Is that where you are?

Are you writing, reading, playing music, dancing? Are you alone or staying in with others?

I’ve been listening to podcasts, reading books, listening to music, getting out for a walk when the weather is nice. All of this creates space for me to contemplate, to meditate, pray and to listen, deeply.

How about you? What are you learning – about yourself, others, your community, our country, our planet?

What do you feel you need? What have you determined is no longer necessary in your life?

~ ~ ~ ~

If you have read a book, listened to a podcast or found some good music, You are welcome to share it here in the comments below.

I am considering posting a list of resources for all of you. You are welcome to make suggestions!

Everyone…please take good care of yourself and others. Know that your choices affect many.

 

blind loyalty

Blind loyalty is just that….BLIND.

Open. Your. Eyes.

Question EVERYTHING.

Taking NOTHING at face value.

Be still.

Dig DEEP.

Ask your heart.

Listen to your intuition.

Trust yourself first, then your trust of others will not be misplaced.

(written in Spring, 2016)

*If seeking for answers outside of yourself is more more of a habit than deep listening, observing, and researching, be diligent. Do your own research. Do not rely on shortcuts and the beliefs at the core of others’ projections in various media for your answers, or what you might consider to be the “right” answer. Ask yourself, are these shallow perspectives? Go deeper. Look beyond. Your answers will eventually resonate through your awareness and the alignment with who you are. Your feelings will tell you.

Don’t like the answer? Go deeper. Ask yourself, “Who am I”? And isn’t that the most important question at the core of everything you believe, see, feel and act upon?

Blind loyalty – the ultimate surrender of personal power to another human being.

revisiting integrity

Two years ago, October 17, 2017,  to be exact, I wrote a relatively brief piece on integrity.  In the last few days, many issues and occurrences in the collective, as well as in the lives of those closest to me, point to the cracks in organizational foundations, seemingly built on integrity. I was instantly reminded of a specific quote that is contained in the aforementioned post from 2017. Please take a moment to read it. It is brief and seems apropos of the days we are in at this moment.

I also offer this – a response to one of those close to me, with whom I shared the quote contained in the blog:

“Usually the ones we want to hear or see will not get the message through the sharing of words or quotes. Like all of us, we have to learn from experience. The best outcome is for the experience to not be a devastating one for all concerned. Best to energetically wish them well as you move on to something even better. You had apparently outgrown this experience.”

We are living in times of great change – in the world and individually within ourselves. We are called to become the very best of who we are, so that we can engage when we felt lead to, and to do so from a place of our most authentic self, centered in our heart of love – which is connected to the All That Is (God, Spirit, Universe or whatever name you give to the powerful loving energy that is in and all around us). We are not called to dive into or otherwise create conflict. We ARE called to bring our best selves to anything we experience in each moment.

We are called to speak our authentic and deep truth with our compassionate hearts. We are called to observe ourselves and our experiences in order to know the wisdom that we inherently have – borne of our experiences – those which we call “good” and those which we call “bad”. All are for the evolution of our souls: the awakening of ourselves, our hearts from the mind controlling. sleepwalking unconsciousness to the empowered awareness of our consciousness, of our collective connection to one another.

Be Impeccable With Your Word. Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.

 – Don Miguel Ruiz

 

 

 

our truth

“Satisfying untruth is more pleasing to us than unsatisfying truth, and Big Truth is invariably unsatisfying—at least to the small self.”

 – Fr Richard Rohr

 

I could spend time writing about the ongoing discourse in the country I live in regarding a number of topics. However, I choose to skip the mundane in favor of the higher.

I leave the meaning of the above quote to your discernment.

We are living in extraordinary times, as a friend of mine has said for some time. Our truth is ours. How we feel, speak or act upon it matters.

 

 

 

 

in just 24 hours…

…so much can shift. Indeed in a moment, our lives can change.

The last 24 hours have been challenging on many fronts. Watching drama unfold in many places close to me, I felt the ache of the seeming unraveling of the fabric of an immediate and extended family. What I realize is that some are in the process of individuating and others are seeking to fit in…at any cost. The cost of “fitting in” is very high and those who are unconscious to what they are choosing to do will eventually come home to themselves and see what was lost in the venture of life thus far (or they will not). I finally started to wake up to this years ago…and the road is bumpy and challenging and deeply rewarding and most of all, ongoing.

The pull for us to fit in is powerful, for belonging is what we seek, and we fear being marginalized, left out or chastised for being different…truly being ourselves. Fitting in and belonging are very different things, as Brene Brown has clarified in her years of research. Nevertheless, fitting in is still the norm for many who have not yet seen the wall ahead.

“Fitting in is about assessing a situation and becoming who you need to be to be accepted. Belonging, on the other hand, doesn’t require us to change who we are; it requires us to be who we are.”

Our internal process of shifting from unconscious to conscious is multi-dimensional and requires so much of the following; acceptance of who we are, who we have been, what we wish to be and do; mixed with a lot of love, forgiveness, acceptance and courage. Courage, which is born in the heart leads us to fully embrace our vulnerability as we step fully into our life each moment, each day and in each situation which challenges us to the very core of who we are. I had to return to what I know as I awoke this morning, for the last 24 hours challenged me…and my heart was aching.

I was concerned for a family member in the hospital, while watching the loose fabric of my immediate and extended family unravel as sides were taken over some dangerous propaganda. The disparate views and conflation of topics made it all the more challenging to observe. I simply felt sad about it all as I realized it was a living, breathing microcosm of where our country and planet are today.

Even as I feel deep sadness, I know all of this is a necessary part of life…today…here…now. It is a part of the process of the collective awakening of humanity.

Here is what I know…

Faith and Trust in the Energy of Love to transform all that it touches will get us through this for as long as it takes. I know I will not live long enough to see the results of the current shift across the world and my faith in love and the unseen and unknown remind me that I am grateful to be here now.

When I feel sad, lost or separated from those I love, I return to what is grounding…my love for trees and what they show us by their very being. Yesterday, a fellow blogger shared a quote early in the day which seemed to be preparing me for the day ahead. Thank you, Theresa, Soul Gatherings for this quote:

Storms make oaks take deeper root.

~ George Herbert ~

Early this morning, as I enjoyed my coffee with soft music in the background, a song started to play that I have always found soothing.  I listened and allowed the soothing rhythm of the melody and the Sanskrit prayer to settle in. Like the quote above from yesterday, perhaps as a harbinger then, this song played only for a brief few moments; shorter than its full recording and long enough for me to research the prayer and it’s meaning. Balm for an aching heart…salve for my soul this day. Here is a link to the YouTube video of Tina Malia singing Om Sarve and the words – in Sanskrit with the English meaning follow. If you need it, please close your eyes and let it settle in.

Om Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah

Sarvesham Shantir Bhavantu
Savresham Purnam Bhavantu
Sarvesham Mangalam Bhavantu
Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah
Sarve Santu Niramayah
Sarve Bhadrani Pasyantu
Ma Kascit Duhkha Bhaghavet.
Om Shantih Shantih Shantih

May all be Healthy
May all get Peace
May all get complete wisdom
May all be blissful
Everybody be happy,
Everybody be healthy
See everybody as one
Never sadness will touch.
Om Peace Peace Peace

 

May your day unfold in ways that bring what you need…even if you cannot recognize it as such.

May you find what you need to transform, heal and open to the beauty of your light within so that you can shine, shine, shine.

Namaste

 

names, labels, roles and judgments

“Once you label me you negate me.”
 – Søren Kierkegaard

Recently, in a conversation about a variety of topics, a person in the group referred to me as, “…an idealist or a realist.” I smiled while thinking to myself, “I’ve never thought about that…especially whether either or both of those labels describe my views of the current milieu.”

And then I got it. Labels. Of course we have to name someone as something – especially when we don’t know them well and are trying to figure out who they are and what they believe. My career was dotted with many labels and names for individuals, groups and most especially anything unfamiliar! I am also quite good at describing myself as a role. For example, the last time you met someone for the first time, was one of their first questions to you (or yours to them), “What do you do?” And, how did either of you answer that question?

“What we know matters but who we are matters more.”
 – Brené Brown

We typically think of an answer that reflects one of the many hats that we wear each and every day. I recall setting up my blog in 2012 and writing an “About” paragraph that described myself as all of my roles – daughter, sister, mom, grandmother, friend, coach, blogger, former executive, consultant – rather than saying anything about Who I Am.

I facilitated a coaching group of diverse women in my home a few years ago. As we went around the circle to introduce ourselves, I suggested that after each one gave their name, each one also share who they are. Think about it. If you are asked to say who you are, what is your default answer? I’ll guess you say, “I am (a role).” I suppose I am not so different in my response to this question…especially in our fast-paced day-to-day experience.

For me the answer to “What do you do,” isn’t a quick or easy one. I do a lot of things. I still have some of the same roles. I am still an introvert (label). If I could find all of the instruments from the years of working in a large organization, which attempted to categorize the type of person or personality that I am, I could give you even more labels. And none of them provided a full, clear perspective of Who I Am.

“I am ashamed to think how easily we capitulate to badges and names, to large societies and dead institutions.”
 – Ralph Waldo Emerson

In our very complex world, we have names for just about anyone, any group, or any organization. And yet, we are all of the same origin. It matters not what we look like, what we do, or whom we believe we are, we are of the same origin. And in our human need to categorize, characterize and label, we have so severely divided ourselves that many of us have retreated to a place where we are only surrounded by those who see, think and speak as we do. We have forgotten Who We Are.

My intention in this writing is not to change your mind about names, labels, or roles that you have chosen for yourself or which you have assigned to others. My hope is that by observing the names, labels and roles in your own life, you may begin to see how you regard yourself and how the perspective you have on and about yourself impacts your views of others.

I am reminded of something that Wayne Dyer said when I heard him speak quite a few years go. On the subject of judging others, he offered this (paraphrased): When you say or think something about another that is a judgment of them, something they’ve said, or done, or even their appearance; add to the end of your comment of thought, “…and I am that, too.” Think about that for a moment. This, more than any other observation practice, helps us see our projections of the places within that we have chosen to deny, disregard, or that we may even hate about ourselves.

Perhaps a good place to begin to observe the instinctive habit to name, label, or assigned roles and judgments, is with and within ourselves.

Self-worth comes from one thing – thinking that you are worthy.  

– Wayne Dyer

Realizing our own worthiness; doing our work to heal those hurting places within us, will change our view of ourselves…and everyone else.

And…what is my answer to Who Am I?

I am Carrie. I do a lot of different things. At the core of my being, I am (love and peace).

 

 

“The ultimate truth of who you are is not I am this or I am that, but I Am.”

-Eckhart Tolle

 

 

 

 

words of comfort

I have been a fan of Brene’s Brown’s research and findings since I first heard about her and her work on vulnerability and courage. Lately I have found great comfort in at least two things she has written. First a quote that just showed up in my email box today:

 

“Vulnerability — the willingness to show up and be seen with no guarantee of outcome – is the only path to more love, belonging and joy. The downside? You’re going to stumble, fall and get your ass kicked.

Worth it? Yes.”

It’s a challenge to remember  the power of vulnerability when you are down yet one more time. And…this is a powerful, yet gentle reminder of the reward of being real and authentic.

I also came upon her Manifesto of the Brokenhearted while watching a live stream of a conversation she had with Oprah a year or so ago. Oprah read the last two lines of it and  it brought tears to my eyes.  I offer it here, as a gift to you in this season of healing, gratitude and love.

 

Manifesto of the Brave and Brokenhearted

There is no greater threat to the critics and cynics and fear mongers than those of us who are willing to fall because we have learned how to rise.

With skinned knees and bruised hearts; we choose owning our stories of struggle, over hiding, over hustling, over pretending.

When we deny our stories, they define us.

When we run from struggle, we are never free.

So we turn toward truth and look it in the eye.

We will not be characters in our stories. Not villains, not victims, not even heroes.

We are the author of our lives.

We write our own daring endings.

We craft love from heartbreak, compassion from shame, grace from disappointment, courage from failure.

Showing up is our power.

Story is our way home. Truth is our song.

We are the brave and brokenhearted.

We are rising strong.

Yes, indeed.

We are the authors of our lives and will write our own endings.

We are rising strong.

 

the healing journey of a lifetime

The healing journey is the journey of our lives. Every person, relationship, situation, interaction, provides bits and pieces of the matter or stuff with which we can work.

I once thought healing was a linear process. Learn, heal and move on to the next lesson. What I know now is that it is more circuitous and is linear as well. It is an interesting observation to make now, as I had hoped that at this point in my life, I would be finished with all that stuff and onto living a peaceful, quiet, comfortable, aesthetically pleasing life. Alas! All of this and more are available in every moment and of my very own creation.

The circuitous route of healing means that just when I thought it was safe to venture back into challenging, dark waters, I learn that it is not safe. The linear becomes circuitous, as I revisit those spaces, places and relationships which I thought were healed…and I feel deeply in those moments that they are not. Moreover, I find that there is yet another layer of healing just waiting for me. The deep dive that is required to look deeply into past traumas, to embrace the child within and assure her/him that all will be well, is one that is not for the faint of heart. And yet, it is the journey of our lifetime.

The more we learn, the more we can begin to change the narrative that we are running in our heads about who we are and therefore what others are as well. We project our thoughts, our stories and our wounds onto others; most especially those who are more vulnerable, are behaving in ways that we may find unacceptable or simply look different that we think they should. The more of our life energy that we invest in our healing journey, the more likely we will feel a deeper compassion for and acceptance of ourselves. When we are love, expressed as compassion, we accept. We no longer project, defend, react, etc., as we have in the past.

We take full responsibility for ourselves. We choose those with whom we will spend our precious moments; those who see us as we are and accept us without attempting to redefine, control or make us the object of their own unconscious and painful projections.

We learn through the healing process to let go; to release those people, memories and relationships which have brought to us something, in our human experience, that may have hurt or injured us. In our heart, we know that these are people who had something to remind us of within ourselves that we may not yet remember about who we really are.

We feel.

We heal.

We choose.

We create.

One of my favorite poets penned a lovely writing years ago that resonates. It initially served as a call to my heart and today it is a reminder…a most powerful one.

Everything is Waiting For You

Your great mistake is to act the drama

as if you were alone. As if life

were a progressive and cunning crime

with no witness to the tiny hidden

transgressions.

To feel abandoned is to deny

the intimacy of your surroundings. Surely,

even you, at times, have felt the grand array;

the swelling presence, and the chorus,

crowding out your solo voice. You must note

the way the soap dish enables you,

or the window latch grants you freedom.

Alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity.

The stairs are your mentor of things

to come, the doors have always been there

to frighten you and invite you,

and the tiny speaker in the phone

is your dream-ladder to divinity.

Put down the weight of your aloneness and

ease into the conversation. The kettle is singing

even as it pours you a drink, the cooking pots

have left their arrogant aloofness and

seen the good in you at last. All the birds

and creatures of the world are unutterably

themselves. Everything is waiting for you.

Posted on Facebook 11/12/2017 by David Whyte
“Everything is Waiting for You”
from EVERYTHING IS WAITING FOR YOU
Poems by David Whyte
© David Whyte and Many Rivers Press

~ ~ ~

As we continue to face the most challenging of times and circumstances, throughout the world and in our own lives, focusing on the inside healing work of the journey of our lifetime, is the most important contribution we make to our individual healing, as well as to the larger healing process of the world – from the condition of the planet to all of the relationships on this plane of existence.

We are individuals in a larger collective. We are segmented into families, communities, villages, towns, cities, states, nations, countries, to name only a few. Our healing will bring us to a realization. We will begin to wake from the slumber of forgetting and will begin to re-member. We will see ourselves in each other. We will begin to reach out to those that we may have not have considered opening to previously.

We will see all living beings as fundamental and necessary parts of our natural experience on this planet. We will find ways to consciously create our lives. We will consciously see what is real and what is not. We will no longer give ourselves up to societal demands be, look or act as we are told or see in various media. We will sense truth in ourselves and in others.

The light within will shine brighter. We will see and know our own light as it begins to shine brighter. We will see the light in others.

We will live and be Namaste consciousness.

 

 

 

truth and agreement

Looking around, it becomes very apparent that we are all seeking some truth…about many things. I’ve been reflecting on the many things I’ve learned over the years about truth. Here are a few:

  • Truth is relative.
  • REAL truth can only be found in the natural world.
  • There is NO absolute truth.

And there is this meme that I found on the Internet a couple of years ago:  

And yet, we are all seeking truth.

In 2009, a book was published that provides an additional perspective on truth, that I thought was worth sharing as well all ponder the meaning – for ourselves – of truth.  This book, “When Everything Changes, Change Everything,” by Neale Donald Walsch contained what he calls the Mechanism of the Mind and the System of the Soul. I was fortunate to have been in retreat with him and about 80 others, as he carefully unfolded and explained these two separate and closely related systems and how the integration of the two is considered to be The Technology of Transformation.

It may come as no surprise that Truth is a component of the Mechanism of the Mind.

So that I provide adequate context for your consideration, here are the components of the Mechanism of the Mind.

  • Event
  • Data (factual, judged, past experience, media, others’ input)
  • Truth (actual, apparent, imagined)
  • Thought
  • Emotion
  • Experience
  • Reality (distorted, observed, ultimate)

These are presented as sequential. From Event to Reality each of us, individually, engages the process he describes as the Mechanism of the Mind. We are not conscious that all of this is happening at the moment an “event” occurs.  In fact what happens is that the mind observes an event and forms a level of truth about that event, which will lead to three kinds of reality – distorted, observed, or ultimate. What I am most intrigued by, however, is the three types of truth in this system – actual, apparent, or imagined.

And here are his conclusions. The three versions of truth produces one of three realities.

Outside of the context of his explanations, these can be very challenging to take in, think about and understand. It does make a lot of sense, and I hope you will consider it. The more we practice and develop our sense of observation, the less hold that data has on us. Objectifying this is key to making our own decisions and determinations about what is best for us and comports with what we know about who we really are and why we are really here (consult your soul for more on this).​

As it relates to agreement – objective reality is this: up is up, down is down, etc.  On that we can all generally agree. There is only common agreement. There is no common reality.

So that you can also be aware of his System of the Soul, here are the components:

  • Being (timeless)
  • Consciousness
  • Awareness
  • Perspective (single most important thing in your life – the place from which you are looking at life)
  • Perception (what you see is a direct result of your perspective)
  • Belief
  • Behavior (we behave based upon what we believe)

I recommend the book, if you seek more information about these. Otherwise, I invite you to consider writing down these two lists side by side. Doing so will provide you with a perspective on them that illustrates a symbiotic relationship. If transformation is to occur, in us as individuals and in our collective society, both the Mechanism of the Mind and the System of the Soul are fully involved in our experiences. Transformation is a re-definition of the terms of our lives. It is possible, if we choose it.  I encourage and recommend making that choice, for our souls know more than our minds could ever hope to know.

Question everything. Trust yourself. Learn to become more objective, less reactive. Reactivity is a projection of unhealed wounds. Heal and become objective about them. Therein lies your wisdom.

May we begin to see that truth is truly relative. May we also begin to seek agreement – respectfully, lovingly and peacefully.

Namaste.