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“If you want to awaken all of humanity, then awaken all of yourself. If you want to eliminate all of the suffering in the world, then eliminate all that is dark and negative in yourself. Truly, the greatest gift you have to give is that of your own self transformation.”

– Lao Tze

My life is a sitting meditation. That is what I do twenty-three hours a day, I sit. If a disturbing thought arises I cannot distract myself; I cannot stand up and leave the room or take a hike on the trail. I am a captive audience. When I ponder who my captor might be, the answer is unequivocally, my higher self. My Self is a benevolent captor that has unexpectedly become a liberator. Sitting by myself hour after hour, day after day, month after month, and year after year, I’ve become more comfortable than I ever have been with myself. It is interesting to consider what has led to this liberation.

Some of my greatest obstacle to knowing who I truly am have been erroneous beliefs. The greatest such belief was that I am unequivocally alone in this large universe. Believing this triggered my greatest fear in life, the fear of being alone and helpless. Being unable to walk or feed myself renders me totally helpless in a literal sense. Yet, I have never felt as powerful as I do now. I have never felt as connected to something greater than myself, both internally and externally, until this point in my life. Realizing that I have become liberated from my greatest fear is both humbling and heartening.

Another obstacle toward self-actualization involved having a strong, reliable, and attractive body. This was both a gift and a hindrance, as it often distracted me from connecting deeply with my inner being which ultimately led to liberating my spirit. My physical strength was a gift when I needed to create my earlier life including my home and career and to raise my children. However, once they were raised I seemed to be treading in the waters of my fears, desperately trying to prove to myself that I was not alone and helpless. Being in serial relationships never seemed to affirm a connectedness that was mirrored internally. Having been successful at athletic competitions never seemed to inoculate me from feeling a sense of helplessness.

What I have noticed while “sitting in meditation” most days is that my mind and spirit has deepened exponentially. This process has inadvertently created distance between myself and many who were once close to me. There has been much to mourn in my life; yet there has been much to celebrate as well. I can even celebrate my ability to mourn. It takes courage and determination to mourn and move on. There have been many times when I moved through this process kicking and screaming. There been times when I have resisted and avoided the inevitable. I believe that is part of why we are in human bodies.

Being still, day after day, has allowed me to enter a state of liminality, where dissolution of a previous order can happen. Liminality (from the Latin word limen, a threshold) yields much uncertainty and fluidity while processing through emotional states. Entering the liminal state has provided an accelerated course in life.

Although, it is not necessary for most people to enter into such an intense initiation to progress spiritually, on a conscious level I felt like I had no choice. In this body, with this personality, the time was now. It was time to take the Leap.

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 Lynne Kaplan Artography

This is a poem that I wrote in 1989, just prior to the first symptom:

The power is running through me now. The brakes and energy are   excruciating. Synapses suck. As it jumps does it increase in power? The movement just before the jump surge is an eternity–the place whereagony lives, where death becomes a real possibility. Life is in the jump. (The vocalized sigh gives life. Expansion for creation. The echoes of the sigh bring community. Love. Breath.)

It jumps because it has to. It Knows no other Way. There is no consideration of consequences. No sureness that land lies beyond the trajectory.

We grow. We make our choices. “it” doesn’t care what our choices are. We create our experiences. “It” continually provides us the opportunity to be in the Love.

It doesn’t matter what one chooses. One must choose and move on. Take the leap.