Sunday, September 16, 2012
Friday, September 14, 2012
It’s happening NOW in real-time. For the first several months of my sobriety I felt tugged into the future or the past and now I feel like I have been warped into the present time – it is happening NOW and I feel slightly more empowered to make decisions from the powerful place of being present in this NOW moment. It’s not going to help to run from things any longer – it’s best to dive straight in – the harder the situation the deeper I should dive. I have been playing small, deathly afraid of the resistance I feel, mistaking it for truth instead of the fear that it is. Perhaps it’s the un-layering of the cloaks of doubt and shame and fear that are occurring in the 9th step that are allowing me to center more fully in the NOW. But just because I find myself centered here doesn’t mean that it’s not scary, there are things from my past and my future that I wish to cling to so badly but those that are meant to be a part of me now will simply be here NOW. If they are still embedded in my heart NOW than they belong. I’m not really sure exactly what I am talking about when I say this – but it’s that inner guidance that is revealing itself through this Spiritual Practice of writing and as it always does – it will inform me throughout the coming days. I have come to trust that still small voice within me – “the occasional hunch or inspiration is gradually becoming a working part of the mind.(BB, P. 87)” Being present and watching thoughts fly through my mind and deciding & knowing which are my disease, which are my thoughts and yet always remembering that my thoughts are not me. I am not my thoughts, I do not have to identify with them…. I can simply let them be a separate entity from me. So can you, drawing yourself into the present moment through actively working the steps and committed to being here now you will find yourself increasingly empowered to make choices that serve you and to do so with Ease, Grace & Dignity. Being here NOW is about embracing the beautiful mystery of the Universe. As your practice deepens you will fall in love with the mystery of the Universe as I sometimes am :)
Friday, September 7, 2012
Today I wake feeling empowered, alive and filled with hope. I used to shy away from the word “hope” as it somehow implied to this New Thought persons mind, that my good was outside myself. Nope, I feel that hope right there deep down inside of me and it is rising to the surface of my being and it feels good. A couple of my spiritual mentors have so lovingly pointed out to me lately that perhaps in an area or two of my life, I am still seeking my good outside of myself. This was the case with drugs and alcohol and now after almost 17 months of sobriety I am discovering this to be true in other areas of my life. I have come to understand that we are endogenous beings – meaning our life unfolds from within us outward and not vice versa so as I explore my desires for life and begin to look at them with an eye of “is this something outside of me that I am seeking” I begin to have a deeper clarity and freedom than I am used to in certain areas of my life. SO today I am going to share my practice with you. My practice is an affirmation that I repeat 15X a day and it is this. There is no lack of Spiritual Integrity in Universal Good, therefore there is no lack of Spiritual Integrity in me, My Good is %100 alignment and expression in and of Spiritual Integrity. Any Good that I am seeking is within me. I stop reaching for that which is outside of me and turn my attention and intention inward to the Source of All Life. Happy Trails in your sobriety today. If today is a dark one, grab a mentor, a friend and share your pain openly and honestly. Tomorrow is a new day and chances are you will wake feeling completely different than today. This too shall pass. Many Blessings.
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Yesss – there is a reason that the 9th step has promises – isn’t there? I’m in the midst of my 9th step and my excuses of business has seen it’s day. More deeply than ever I am sensing in my depths that there is a link between the stuff that is hiding deep down inside of me that the 9th step is intended to heal and my prosperity is awaiting the clear reflection of right alignment that comes as a result. I’ve been so busy fooling myself all of these years with false pride but when it comes down to really knowing what I believe at my core, one may look to my life to find out – I spoke of this on Sunday at our service. As vulnerable as this feels to put it out there, I know that I must, in faith that there will be another chapter to the story to share with you if I am honest about this stage of my journey - a chapter which reflects great financial abundance and prosperity in my life and as my life. There must be some part of me which really believes that “I am not good enough to be supported freely and consistently” because that is what continues to reflect in my world. I know that God does not punish but that I have the capacity to punish myself through holding a belief, which is absolutely creative and operative in my life. These beliefs could very well have been adopted from all of the “bad stuff” that I was up to in my addiction. I think I am harder on myself that almost anyone I have ever met and I have to remember that we all make mistakes and addiction has a particularly messy and destructive nature to it. Living my amends is the most powerful restitution for the damage caused but getting in there and making amends whereby not only is it possible that others will forgive me but more importantly that I forgive myself. You see my inner self critic or as Julia Cameron calls her “my Censor” has rich and fertile soil to grow and live in the “stuff” that happened in my life around my disease. The 9th step is about clearing this so that my inner Critic can just relax already. Eventually as I continue to work these steps I hope to see my inner critic fade into the nothingness from whence it came and to feel the abundant nature of my soul expressed in my attitudes of being more than enough for the fact that I am a Divine emanation of “the One” as is each and every soul on this planet. Beliefs rooted in Truth unlike the false beliefs I picked up in my addiction have nothing to do but shine health into every area of my life including my financial health and well-being. Today, I pursue the next section of my 9th step with vigor for I am ready for, accept and expect my freedom. I liken this experience to standing at the door knocking, expecting the door to be opened and the God of my soul to welcome me home to the Truth of my being which has never changed – I just temporarily forgot. Thank you 9th step for being the roadmap for remembering the Truth about me.
Friday, July 20, 2012
The more people we love, the greater humanity becomes” –Anthony Douglas Williams, Inside the Divine Pattern.
Without my sobriety I am hardly the lover that I was intended to be. My sobriety is the foundation or the fertile soil from which my Divine Purpose is born. I am here to Love. My sincerest desire is that Love has It’s Way with me, through me and as me. My sincerest intention is that my life be a lotus flower of Love, each petal of love unfolding into the world with all of the qualities of Love. The qualities of Love that come to mind are Inclusivity, Power, Freedom, Joy, Enthusiasm, Strength, Light, the ability to Penetrate the darkness, Wholeness, Stability, Insight, Inspiration & Intuition. All of these and more are born in the Oversoul or environment of Love.
The greatest forum for Love is being built in my world right now. My dream to create communities founded in and always from the place of Pure, Un-conditional Love so that individuals healing, growth and maximum creativity are nurtured to the full expression of their highest potential. For the first time I am reaching out on my blog for your support. I you believe in the message that I bring here in my blog then please consider logging onto aspencsl.org to make a tax deductible donation which will fuel the fire of my Love on and for the planet. We really appreciate your support – Center for Spiritual Living Aspen has been "my baby" the dream that I have been eating, sleeping and breathing for many moons - it is without a shadow of a doubt the vision for my life. It is finally coming to reality after 13 years of dreaming, visioning and planning. Centers for Spiritual Living are in great alignment with the Principles of the 12 steps - in fact it is said that our founder Ernest Holmes was good friends with Bill W and you can often find similar descriptions of God and Principle in both of their writings. We often say that we are grateful to be alcoholics/addicts because we have these principles and communities to live by and within - well, is a way that these gifts are offered to the community at large. Again - please consider donating what you can as we are raising the seed money to have a beautiful launch on August 5th.
May your world be fueled by Divine Love from within AND all around.
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
“Good judgment, a careful sense of timing, courage and, prudence – these are the qualities we shall need when we take step 9.” – Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
Ahh, how I missed the sweet spaciousness of one of my favorite Spiritual Practices in the world – yoga. It’s been a few weeks since I have practiced and yesterday I promised myself I would go. Despite all of my ego’s efforts to procrastinate and leave this practice for another day, I showed up. I am so grateful that my higher self One and yesterday I got to remember what it feels like to be in my body again. At one point I was cradling my entire leg in my arm and rocking it like a baby (ok – so it wasn’t just me – it was the entire class ) I found myself giggling out loud in class at the sweetness of this posture. It dawned on me that I was using strength in one area of my body to improve the flexibility in another – how beautiful. Ok – so admittedly I am feeling naturally high this morning after my morning meditation.
Meditation is that time where I focus on turning my attention so far inward that it is higher than my thoughts, feelings and emotions. Meditation is consciously turning toward that changeless, untouchable stuff within me and beginning by having a conversation with that. Eventually that conversation becomes a Union and I begin to operate from that place – the High Self and Boy am I a Divine Center of Power and Vision when I operate from a total Union and Connection with Source. I love meditation and I love feeling the natural high that I looked for in drugs and alcohol for so long.
On another note – I took the first steps of my 9th step – “made amends to those people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or other.” Per my sponsor and God’s mysterious ways – I am starting with my doozies. Well I emailed both of these people yesterday simply stating that I am at the place in my sobriety where it is time to make an amends. Ok – the amends hasn’t even come yet but HOLY SMOKES does it feel good to have taken an honest step here. I already feel a momentum building and get a funny feeling that I have a new fervor for making these amends and feeling the freedom that I sense is born from this process. Yay – this morning I am especially diggin’ sobriety, yoga and life. I hope you are too!
Monday, July 16, 2012
With a clear and deep Gratitude for my sobriety I share a powerful demonstration this morning of how this program works. I just returned from my brother, Jon’s, wedding in Telluride. I have always know that one of the major themes of my life is Triumph. It had to be because there was so much challenge that I knew it was the first side of the coin of Triumph that I came to live. I have an awareness that I have chosen the life challenges that would offer me the biggest opportunities for growth, evolution and development without killing me. My soul said a Big, Mighty Yes to Big Development and Unfoldment when it chose my particular family. With two deaths in my immediate family at a young age, loads of money appearing and disappearing and a huge family chalk full of souls on a deep journey of soul’s who are deeply “in it,” we have been a family that I have taken for a lot worse. This past weekend I found a chord of Harmony and Love that I had almost given up on and it was as if the last 15 years of my life had come full circle to a moment in time where my family was together for the first time since my fathers funeral in 1998. I had come across individual family members in different settings over the years and it almost always turned into a confusing and difficult navigation of the giant pain bodies that we had all developed through the tragedies in our lives. One of the ways that I felt I was missing out was with my nephews and nieces and little sisters who seemed to be trapped from me on the other side of the pain that always erupted among the adults. This weekend the light shined through after years and years of trials and tribulation. Thanks to my program the pain buttons that used to stick out from every angle of me that seemed so ridiculously easy to push and unveil uncomfortable instability and a resulting sadness and anger, seemed to have vanished. I showed up as the confident, powerful, humble and happy woman that I always knew that I was. Although there weren’t any awards or lavish strokes of the ego about how much I have changed or grown, there was the True gift of a sincere connection and a deep knowing that I was dancing in beautiful harmony with these teachers we showed up in this life to be my family. I guess you never know until you dive in, how much you have really grown or how much your consciousness has evolved. This weekend I found the barometer for my consciousness which has had a true chance to evolution through my program in sobriety, to be hot with the fires of Love and Harmony. For this I am truly grateful for my sobriety. Take another step forward and soon you will find yourself in a moment of Triumph, Harmony and Love. Blessings.
Monday, July 9, 2012
“The future is no place to place your better days.” – Dave Mathews Band
“Be here now”… a phrase I use so often when I am leading meditation class. I hear it resounding in my being this morning and as I gently move from my morning meditation to writing here, these are the words that flow from my heart – this is my mantra today. I am here now, today. I study spirituality in a really beautiful philosophy which offers a remembering to my soul – life is Infinite….meaning my soul will go on to Infinity developing and unfolding and expanding. Currently I am living a very disciplined life for the sole purpose of the un-foldment of my dreams. In the business of creating whatever we want using the laws of cause and effect, we can sometimes get caught up in creating everything that feels good, right now in the moment. As I have grown in my Spirituality I am realizing how dynamic our nature truly is and in this there is so much unfolding all at once. I used to think that I was overly sensitive and in fact was considered by many to be a very sensitive as a child. What I am realizing now is that I was “overly sensitive” and yet it was because my intuitive sense was far more developed than many of the people around me. As I really get to know myself through these steps and the other practices involved in my spiritual program, I am beginning to get a sense of how powerfully intuitive I have always been. In my sobriety I get to connect with my intuition again and allow it to be my guiding light. The lesson I am learning when it comes to my intuition today is to allow my mind to be quiet surrounding what is coming through my intuition. Sometimes my intuition has to do with a moment, a day, a year, another time and sometimes it has to do with what I believe to be even other lifetimes. Sometimes when I have a really strong insight, sign or most often, feeling about someone or something - my mind wants to run away with it. What I am learning is that everything that has been given to me through my intuition is a part of the dynamic unfolding and how sweet it is to be connected to the vision before it emerges. However, even with the sheer magic and power of my intuition – my joy and serenity are contingent on my ability to follow Dave Mathews advice and realize that today has Infinity’s Perfect Gifts for the day, right here. Be here now…. the future will come as the present bearing It’s perfect gifts on the day that it arrives. I Am fully Present Here now. I receive and give the gifts of the day with and to those whom I encounter today. I am aware that this day is perfect in its fullness.
Friday, July 6, 2012
“In high moments of recognition of the light that transcends reason, man transcends himself, and writes ore wisely than he knows.” Emma Curtis Hopkins “No man when in his wits attains prophetic truth and inspiration, but when he receives the inspired word his intelligence is enthralled.” –Plato
So, after an hour of meditation in the early hours of the morning, as the sun rises and the birds sing their joyful song, I read these words and am reminded that there is something so powerful beyond reason. Our “wits” can not reveal “prophetic truth.” When however, one is inspired then the “intelligence is enthralled!” Wow! Incredible! I believe this is speaking to the re-organizing of priorities and emphasis of the places in our lives from which we move. I mean, is it most important that I speak from my intellect and get involved in the game of right and wrong….because my ego sits dangerously close to my intellect in my being. Or shall I seek to speak, move and have my being from a deeper place? Shall I seek to move passed my wits into the seat of my soul, to the place of my intuition and my heart and my true power. Yes! Take me there. But how then do I get passed the place that society has conditioned me so strongly to be? How do I arrive at the place deep down in my soul that is calling me ever so lovingly?
Ahhh, I take the next step in my 9th step and write that email and make that call. I say yes to the suggestions and continue to walk my path in my program. You see this program is a road map into the heart. It is a road map with trails marked “humility,” “forgiveness” “honesty” and those trails lead to higher trails marked “true spiritual power” “freedom” & “integrity.” I met with my sponsor after two weeks of having the assignment to make contact with someone on my amends list – you know, one of the doozies and someone who was a very powerful mentor in my life who is now becoming a colleague. Although there is nothing inside screaming “don’t do this – I am scared” there IS something going on because I hadn’t even taken one baby step in the direction of contacting these people. SO with the trail maps of wondrous life in mind… I take these next steps in my 9th step. I seek the th trail map that ultimately leads to my heart – my place of inspiration and joy. I believe I am on the right path. Just one step forward today is perfect J Happy Trails.
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
The day before the 4th of July marking Independence Day. I can’t help but wonder how independent we really are as a society and as individuals. Is being independent, being free.? Or perhaps have we reached the other end of the evolutionary cycle – the point where bridging the borders and recognizing ourselves as part of the One community of life, and of the world would be more empowering, enlightening and freeing. I dunno – what I do recognize is the love that I have for the 12 step community. As people flood Aspen to participate in the 4th of July festivities I find solace, joy and great gratitude in the rooms filled with the odd family member of those visiting families, who is brave enough to endure a 4th of July in Aspen amongst the partiers, the to do’s and the overall increase in what is already an intensely powerful energy. This morning I chaired my first meeting of this particular service position and as always – I asked my sponsor to kick of this period of time by sharing her story. She shared honestly and therefore powerfully from her heart. I was struck by how wonderful the program of AA really is in Aspen. I looked around the room at all of the incredible women who I relate so much too. The kind of woman who is going to go for a quick 4 mile hike in the morning, followed by a really nice breakfast with friends, time with family and a picnic dinner outside the Aspen Music Festival. These are my kind of women and this is my kind of sobriety. For a while I was stuck with “the grass is greener” lenses in my shades. I kept thinkin’ everybody else had something goin on that I didn’t and slowly but surely with some prayer, a dedication to these steps and a solid spiritual practice, I’m starting to really realize that of course others have wonderful things happening in their lives – those wonderful things being perfect for their lives, and me…..well, I have got it goin’ on too! I have got it goin’ on my with sobriety while others have their drink goin’ on to celebrate the 4th. My sobriety is perfect for and their drink is somehow perfect for them. My friends are Divinely appointed and perfect for me and other groups of women and friends have exactly the perfect Divine idea unfolding in their lives. So this 4th of July I celebrate my independence from wanting a drink or to be anywhere else in the world and allow myself to fully experience the overflow of gifts in every area of my life. I live it. Love it. Bring It. By Being my Authentic Self, right exactly where I am. Your good is right where you are, open your heart and your eyes to seeing this truly and rightly. This Independence day chose to notice your independence from that which used to bind and your freedom to be more of who were meant to be, all the time. Love and Blessings
Sunday, June 17, 2012
Life is progressive and evolutionary and it is written in 12 step literature, and I am paraphrasing, we are sober to pack more into the stream of life. In sobriety life is building on itself and evolving in a much healthier and more beautiful way without the negative energy that is created by the activity of the disease. A few weeks ago when I was talking to a friend who has 11 years of sobriety, telling her how I missed drinking. She asked, “why, what do you miss about it?” I replied, as crazy as it sounds, I miss the ups and downs…. I miss being flat on my face on the ground and turning over in total surrender and feeling the giant yank of the Universe, the sheer bouancy of love that you feel from that place of pure surrender and the depth of how far down you have gone. She was channeling something fierce when she replied “that is the false evolutionary cycle, you would much rather just stay sober and feel the real deal of the evolution of your soul.” Wow! It was a false evolutionary cycle, and one of my reasons to drink again was squandered in a moment.
Today is father’s day and I reflect on the beauty and intelligence of my father. He had a brilliance about him that could be felt. He was a true visionary with an infectious smile and a love for life that was so contagious that it swims in my veins as I write these words nearly 15 years after his death. They say he committed suicide and although for many years I believed this was the cause of his death, I now understand that he died of alcoholism. He did because the false evolutionary cycle won over the real deal evolutionary cycle and this powerful man, with incredible vision and intelligence couldn’t out-power or out-smart his disease. I remember, he would decide not to drink for 6 months or a year, here and there but ultimately he missed his life saving boat which would have been the application of the twelve steps. You see, resentment lives on if there is not a program of action to have a total psychic change. A psychic change is dependent on the spiritual tool of forgiveness and forgiveness is not practiced in main stream society. So you see then how profoundly powerful the program is and the importance of working these steps to the best of our ability. Nonetheless, I am deeply grateful for the inspiration, love and joy that my father brought and continues to bring to my life. I love you Dad, today my sobriety and real-deal evolution is for you.
Saturday, June 16, 2012
What a profoundly beautiful time in my life, this is. I have been cultivating the life of my dreams in consciousness for a very long time. It is now that I am beginning to sense the emergence of the fullness of the life that I have dreamed of. Sometimes with attachment and sometimes without, I have prayed, but consistently and constantly have I prayed. My prayers now are a balance of harmonizing with the inner desires of my soul that I am connected to and to the more advanced form of prayer, which is a surrender an openness to the will of God which equals a deep yes born from a truer faith in Oneness than I have ever experienced before. For a long time I questioned whether God had a will for my life and whether it is all my responsibility to create in the form of thinking and feeling things into existence. Although the prayer which includes colorful visualization of what I desire is powerful and important I find that it is perhaps slightly more foundational to have a deep knowing that Life has a desire to live its fullness through me and I believe this occurs most powerfully through my prayer, “thy will be done!”
The big book often talks about the 4th dimension and I believe that, as mentioned on page 87, this has to do with the “intuitive thought or inspiration….gradually becoming a working part of the mind.” This is also known widely in the world of religion and spirituality as the mystical experience. A mystical experience is the experience of direct knowing… a life guided by the un-paralleled force of intuition. I believe that the paradigm shift in the world that is so often talked about, is one which is breeding intuitively guided lives around the planet. An intuitively guided life is a mystical life. I’m not talking about intuition which, kicks in during a crisis or pre-emergency, that thing that tells you to go left or right - although this is a powerful demonstration and introduction to the intuition, I am talking about intuition as “a working part of the mind.” I will take it a step further and say that intution as the intimate friend and guide at the center of us always drawing us forward into the greatest yet to be. I see a world of modern day mystics and I believe many of those people on the leading edge of lives lived in this manner are activating their mystic training through the 12 step programs. So continue to activate your mystical life by continuing to work the steps and join us in true evolutionary consciousness.
Friday, June 15, 2012
In sobriety the confusion clears as the fog lifts in layers and I find myself more available than ever to the sweetness of the relationships in my life. As I begin to drop the rocks that have been weighing me down for so long and my character defenses begin integrate into an experience of greater wholeness, I find myself grateful for all of the love in my life. I am taking things less personally than I ever have before and becoming more clear about what my part in each situation is. This clarity from the confusion that used to baffle me is one of the greatest gifts of sobriety. I begin to sense myself with a compassion that I have never had before and therefore treat others with more of the compassion that they deserve. When I got to the program I just wanted to stop drinking and realize now that my ego was so out of check that some part of me believed that stopping the drinking would be the cure all. The truth is that the twelve steps are a deep, powerful and, sequential spiritual program which breeds a freedom that I couldn’t have fathomed before. The truth is that the program offers the opportunity to experience the truth at the center of it all which is that we live in a dynamically and powerfully loving world. I was speaking with someone who may be experiencing active addiction and she expressed not feeling supported or loved for who she is…. a feeling, that as she shared, I remembered feeling so often in my addiction. She also expressed a tangible sense of confusion and separation from what is good in the world. This conversation shed light on how far I have come in sobriety. Generally I feel so connected to Love through the people, situations and environments in my life. In sobriety I have been more forgiven and supported than I would have thought possible. I have begun to really sense the goodness that lies at the center of every human heart and through my conscious yes to the Divine Plan for my life I have aligned myself with ever deepening experiences of how truly Good God is, at the core of it all. I guess what I am saying is that through my sobriety I am finding myself closer to the core of Truth, to the Core of Love and Life and God. The fog is lifting and my evolutionary path is consistent, tangible and sets me more free every day. My deepest prayer is that you begin to sense your place on this path of expanding freedom. Blessings of Love.
Wednesday, June 13, 2012
“ The Universal Mind contains all knowledge. It is the potential ultimate of all things. To It, all things are possible…Should all the wisdom of the Universe be poured over us, we should receive only that which we are ready to understand. This is why some draw one type of knowledge and some another, and all from the same source – the Source of all knowledge. The scientist discovers the principles of his science, the artist embodies the spirit of his art, the Saint draws Christ into his being – all because they have courted the particular presence of some definite concept.” Ernest Holmes
Oh, a sweet softening in my experience of life this morning. A softening in my life, as a result of the strengthening and up-leveling my program. I skipped a yoga seminar last night due to a strong internal nudge that I needed a meeting and yet as the hours grew closer to 8pm when the meeting was to start, my disease had almost convinced me that it would be better to stay home and watch a movie or tv or do some other non-live giving activity. This, mind you is the justification of the alcoholic/egoic mind within me whose goal is to keep me small in life. I am learning now that the point is not to rid myself of the ego completely for it is the very frame of my soul. One of the greatest ways for the sure fire success of my ego’s drive would be for me to drink again. My goal now is to have my ego be the servant of my soul and not the other way around; To have my ego be a beautiful kaleidescope through which the Spirit of life pours itself into the world. The voice of the program is finally getting loud enough for me to hear it in the midst of a downward spiral and last night I heard the collective voice of AA say “the most important meeting to go to is the one you don’t want to go to,” and this time, thankfully, I had the willingness to follow. As I settled nervously (mind you… the alcoholic in me being the anxiety for it was about to be put to sleep once again) into my seat it became eminently clear that God was once again, tailoring my life and the messages exactly to my needs….not always my wants….but always my needs. You see, I am in the midst of working steps 6 & 7 right now and of course, guess what the meeting topic was? Step 6 & 7! Step 6 & 7 for me are about clearing “the stuff”; the beliefs and defenses which no longer serve me. These are the dark spots in the kaleidescope of my life’s unique expression in the world. My kaleidescope is my ego, my personality, my body of affairs. Through the process of step 6: Becoming willing to have God remove every defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to God and my fellows and step 7: humbly asking God to remove these defects of character are the way in which my ego can come into right relationship with my Soul. In this way the I Am Presence, the God Within Me gains the reigns and the ego becomes rightfully, the servant of my Divine Purpose. Thank God for this because I am ready for the One Source to unleash itself as my life in the ways that I have courted It’s presence for so long. For me, these steps are about getting the smallness out of the way for the fulfillment of life through me. When I takes steps 6 & 7 I am creating space for a deeper understanding of the Universe for I become more available and receptive and therefore develop a deeper and more authentic understanding of God as I am not busy clinging to my defenses with the drive to protect myself. I live in a safe and loving world today and I trust that implicitly thanks to the clearing of some of my defenses through these steps.
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Writing this blog is one of the ways that I stay sober – so thank you for reading. As I settle back into this beautiful place I call home, I also settle back into my sobriety. I have been a gypsy soul for as long as I can remember and now I finally feel myself putting my running shoes into my closet. What comes with “settling in” is sort of a requirement from the Universe to face fears and emotions that get lost in the dust of the constant running that I am so accustomed to. My feelings states range from Bliss to Fear and Stagnation… and you know what, I’m learning that this is ok. I think I used to reject or resist any feeling that did not fall under the category of “good” because, in my egoic mind, it somehow made me less spiritual to feel less than happy 100%J of the time. What a load of sh** - how can I possibly feel joy without feeling pain? Can I simply be with my pain in the knowing that it is the server of my joy? I realized the other day a new compassion and respect in my soul for others on the journey who are experiencing fear. Now, I clearly so those on a dedicated spiritual path in their pain and know that it does not mean that they are not applying the Principles correctly or are not up to their spiritual practice in the ways that they should be. Now, I realize that it is probably exactly the opposite of what I had surmised…. those feeling their fear are on the courageous journey of spiritual evolution and development – on the same path of evolution and enlightenment that I am on. So, I face my fear head on and share openly and honestly about it, not running from it and not covering it up, knowing that I am not identified by this fear but rather it is that which I am releasing from clouding my true identity which lies right beneath it. In actuality, by sharing my fears with others, I am releasing my identification with it. The only true dissipation of unwanted fear is through me an out into the world. What I am also finding is a real experience of the layers upon layers of my being. I am finding that as I peel back one layer of conditioning (those beliefs that a mass group of people holds, that I came to adopt about the world), I find an authentic strand of life within me. I find a belief or an opportunity to plant a belief which serves my life purpose…something I truly believe about life. Sometimes, as soon as I ground myself in truth I find that there is another layer of conditioning to peel back and the process continues. Sometimes it feels tedious but the general expansion of my consciousness that occurs after each of these cycles is the value in life that I always seek. In yoga, I often hear a teacher say to “breathe into the space that you feel the tightness” and without questioning it I find myself breathing life into the tightness and creating space for a new belief and therefore experience of my body to emerge. In the space of this expansiveness in my body I find new life revealing itself to me. The cycle and the avenues are there for our mind, body and spirit. Upon the foundation of sobriety I have the chance to create space and experience never-ending waves of awe as Life’s vitality washes over me. Just on the other side of fear is a new and brilliant experience of infinity. Face every fear with the intention of walking through it. Much Love
Sunday, June 3, 2012
“If you aren’t centered your consciousness follows whatever catches its attention.” - Michael A. Singer The Untethered Soul
Letting go in the moment is so much easier than unwinding the pain train that was exalted in a moment where we chose the fear over letting go and remaining in our seat of centered consciousness. Remaining in our seats of centered consciousness relies upon an awareness that there is something observing our thoughts, emotions and feelings. Once aware of this higher self within oneself we can begin to “witness” those energetic bodies that are moving through us. While drinking or using we are at the mercy of the drug and when we first get sober our survival instincts run the show…. When is our next meal? How long before this meeting is over so that I can have the temporary relief of a cigarette? When do I get to go to sleep? Slowly, slowly as we come out of the haze we ride the pink cloud for a while and soak all of the love of the fellowship and the strength and wisdom of our sponsors. But then there comes the time when through the 4th,5th,8th and 9th steps we begin to dredge up the stuff that’s been living dormant at the base of our being, weighing us down. We have spent so long pretending that this stuff doesn’t belong to us or simply hiding from the world. We think to ourselves, “if anyone gets to close they will know that I did these shameful things and think I am a bad person.” But the truly dedicated seeker goes through a very messy time in their journey. For some this can last years and others just a few months – it really depends on how much and how deeply we have stored this stuff. It also depends on how honestly and willingly we work on ourselves through spiritual principle. This stage of our evolution can feel very dark and confusing and yet it is absolutely a necessary part of our journey, a right of passage through to the higher realms of being. So don’t be afraid to get messy, anyone who is truly evolved in consciousness has walked through their dark nights. When this stuff starts to come up and out, it is as important as ever to find the seat of centered consciousness within yourself and stay in it… stay identified with it. Tell yourself over and over in the moments that challenge you that make you want to jump on the exhausting pain train of whirlwind emotion, “I am not my thoughts, I let go, I am not my thoughts, I let go, I am not my thoughts, I am not this pain, I let go. This too shall pass, I remain centered in the seat of my soul and allow the flood of emotion to move through my open heart.” Start to practice this and you’ll start to feel empowered and free like never before. Love Out!
Thursday, May 31, 2012
We sat in the car outside the meeting as the rain poured down on the windows, and we healed together. The first miracle of my day today was the opportunity to secretary a meeting and to be of service in a city I don’t live in, along Lake Union’s waters edge in a yacht club. The second miracle was an opportunity to say thank you and please forgive me to an old sponsor who was a fantastic sponsor and yet we didn’t always see eye to eye. We had a moving conversation that was beautiful and challenging all in different moments throughout and with the rain pattering down on the window and the movement of Spirit in my body I began to sense and tap into the Principle of flow. A gentle flow of life moving so beautifully through the expansiveness of my being. An expansiveness that has been co-created by all of the wonderful mentors and friends in my life lately. An expansiveness that has been created by my fourth and fifth steps(the three that I have done this year but especially as a result of the work I did at the retreat last weekend) An expansiveness which I showed up for, even when it has been tough. It has been so tough at times, to the point where I wondered for just a moment… do I need some medication to get me through this? No, folks, this is the real deal. The real deal is sustainable and builds upon itself into new experiences and it comes with its fair share of ups and downs. It has become increasingly clear to me that as a sober woman I don’t have the option to just check out anymore… sometimes I wish we could take safe vacations from sobriety but it’s just not a healthy option and sooo, being with the pain of the world when it rises like a wave is the choice I have that is in alignment with my goals and dreams… so I take it in and I breathe it out. I followed an intuitive nudge to a yoga class this morning which was so beautiful because the instructor invited us all to gather at the front of the room when class begun. With slight hesitation wondering why we would begin class in such a way we all gathered. She said “I just want to check in with you about how you are feeling about the shootings yesterday.” Wow! Wow! Wow! After a moment of awe filled silence, people began to share their feelings and thoughts on the matter and once again I was in place for a deep and powerful healing with others. When two or more gather in the name of Good, miracles happen. I have already been privy to two of these sessions this morning. It is evident that there is truth in the notion that the day of the lone wolf is over as people are hungry from a deeper place than ever to be bathed in the love of community. This is being demonstrated by the budding communities and gatherings around the world...just today in the dressing room before yoga I smiled as I listened to a woman talking about moving to Peru to build a spiritual retreat center where all paths lead to the same One God... deep smile. Together we face and perservere through the darkness that marks the dawning of a new day in the world. I believe the world is going to be unrecognizable in a good way in our lifetimes and perhaps in the very near future. I believe that we are in the midst of the biggest paradigm shift ever. Therefore I know that now more than ever before my sobriety, spiritual practice and the activation of my deepest levels of faith are of the utmost importance, as are yours. Show up for the miracle of two or more gathered and be as honest as you possibly know how to be. The world is dying to be born anew through you, your honesty and your courage today. Join us as we trudge the darkness that will soon fade to the light. Love, Honesty, Light and Courage to you this day.
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Two shootings within a half hour and several suicides in the last few weeks, doesn’t it seem that there is some type of exodus happening on the planet? I have gotten into this conversation with a few of my close friends in recent weeks. Often times we conclude that some really great souls are being called to a better place…. some parallel Universe needs them for some giant cause on another plane, right? Or is it simply that we as a planet are walking through the darkness before the greatest light? When I came out of yoga today feeling refreshed and somewhat renewed after a rough morning, my sister informed me that two shootings had occurred in the city and police were advising us to take precaution as both suspects are on the loose. It drew me back to the question that I have been asking myself lately…is it just me…. or is there a darkness in the world that is tangible to the masses. I surmise that yes, we are as challenged as we every have been and I am so grateful to have the tools of AA because it seems that in a moments notice I can find myself down the rabbit hole… then I start using the tools on my list to drive myself back into the light... 1.) calling my sponsor 2.) writing this blog 3.) getting to a meeting 4.) reading out of the book 5.) finding another (preferably alcoholic) to help 6.) Pray/meditate… and recently having the profound experience of doing deep inner work the way the original founders of 12 steps had originally intended it. We did this in a 12-step retreat format whereby the creators created a loving container established in the unconditionally loving consciousness of two ministers who have long time sobriety and an intention powerful enough to offer the first true taste of freedom that every single one of the 25 people had felt in a LONG time. Rev. Heather Venegas and Rev Collin King taught us the difference between sand box spirituality that includes drive by prayers and one aspect of the program too heavily relied upon AND real deal spirituality whereby you get to the the nitty gritty of it all. They walked us “into the woods” of our consciousness and introduced us to our “little me’s” which they call “passengers” who took up jobs as we experienced the really tough shit in our lives and although we have grown into what is often a much more stable environment and life my little 5 year old warrior is busy protecting me as if we were still in the warzone of my childhood. I now understand the 4th and 5th step like I never have before. Now I am free to take care of the little me's that like to run the show and harmonize them with the woman I am today, assuring them that I(the grown woman) am connected with God and together we have it(life) handled… she is now free to play and be loved up by me. I am learning such a keen awareness of myself that I am automatically empowered into greater heights of existence. I suggest the deep quick work which requires a level of vulnerability in the safety of facilitators who have done their work and live Love. As I dive through the layers of my soul I too see, sense and feel the pressure of the world, calling me to rise or die baby… staying the same just isn’t gonna cut it in this paradigm shift. Link up and dig in. Much Love
Thursday, May 24, 2012
It worked, my super hero life force activation worked!*!* This morning I had an awesome opportunity to chair another big meeting along the waters edge, downtown Seattle, and I feel fantastic! This activation my super hero life force has something to do with one of the following practices or better yet, all of them put together. 1st – I kicked up my prayer practice; I committed more deeply to my meditation; I have been in better contact with my sponsor; been going to lots of meetings AND(the things I have added are) I got the prime and beautiful opportunity to help another alcoholic last night; I have completed my 5th step and begun my 6th and; I have re-engaged a conscious gratitude practice. I’m telling you… I went from the dumpy dumps to feeling GREAT. So activate your super hero life force by taking just a little time to do a bit of each of these things… it’s worthwhile… the gift is freedom, joy, happiness, empowerment, serenity, oh and did I say joy and NATURAL GRATITUDE. My sisters and I were having a good laugh about my facebook page the other day. I am involved in 365 day Gratitude Practice where 300 of my closest friends ;-p and I are using our daily status updates to practice our gratitude. My oldest sister who has a very dry sense of humor commented on her thoughts when she sees my daily updates “oh great, Ash is having another fucking fantastic day again”… lol… we were all rolling on the floor laughing. It got me thinking that wow… this is a practice and the point is not to boast about having another fucking fantastic day but more to put in the forefront of my consciousness what I have going for me so that I may be a magnet for more of that. Sometimes folks, its' a stretch to list my gratitude and I'm not exactly feeling it... but that is the point of practice... to do it especially when I don't feel like doing it. To break it down by practicing gratitude, I am excercising my spiritual muscles and expanding my “I already have” consciousness and therefore receptivity to the All Good of the Universe. I forgot to practice for a couple of days, ok so it was a couple of weeks, and non-coincidentally, I started to slip into somethin’ funkayy! The first two days of three days that I have been back on my gratitude game didn’t really feel all that genuine… but it’s a practice people and I did it anyway! "Fake it ‘til you make it," baby! There is something to these annoying little slogans we here the old timers throwing around the rooms as if we were at a pro-sports arena… TODAY, my GRATITUDE is the GENUINE, AUTHENTIC Expression of Divinity through me. Thank you for my sobriety and my clarity today. Praise and Love to you and your journey!
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
What’s the capital T Truth of me? Well, that I am expression of the Infinite Love of Divinity. No matter how far down the rabbit hole I have ventured the Truth of Spirit has never changed. No matter how many layers of “stuff” I have hidden this truth beneath, it is the eternal truth. Got that? Eternal? It’s the eternal Truth of you too. The 12 steps, yoga and spirituality are all about peeling back the layers of conditioning of belief systems that no longer serve the evolution and unleashing of my soul’s desire. You see, there is something that is planted in me that is mine to be, just as there is something in you that is planted in you that is yours to be. At least in my life my happiness is a direct correlation of my dedication and motivation to be more of the God seed within me. For a while I tried to do the program as if it was separate from this path of revealing the True me. But I was blind to see that the 12 steps are one of the most powerful tools in becoming the real life superhero that I am. You have a real life super hero stashed inside of you too. Your super hero may be a singer, a poet, a traveler who treks the highest peaks, a lawyer, a professional athlete, a philanthropist…. Whatever it is, these 12 steps and yoga are about harmonizing ourselves with our superhero within. I went to a Spiritual Conference in LA a few weeks ago and did some breath work with a company called doasone.com – incredible! One of the founders Rabya Hyak who co-lead this breath work was talking about how breath work is the life force of the super hero. The breath work was profoundly powerful creating the experience of feeling cleansed and light and providing the space for me to drop into one of the most powerful meditations of my life. Anyway, it got me thinking about each of us as real life super heros…. and for this dreamer, that’s perfect. I believe we are real life super heros. The quickest way to take our life forces away are to put substances in our bodies. It’s the false non-sustainable, short lived mini-version of what we are meant to feel, for real. The search and the practice may be longer than popping a pill, smoking dope or drinking alcohol but it’s the REAL activation of the same chemicals in our bodies. I’d rather feel the consistent, subtle buzz of a real and natural high than plug myself with the false. I am going for the full activation of my real life super hero powers today through my meditation, prayer work, breath work and fellowship. I remember that I am the Divine bursting forth as Infinite Love and Divinity and from this place my super hero powers are activated. Sobriety is my launching point.
Monday, May 21, 2012
When I am too attached to the outcome I can’t possibly let life flow with the sheer loving power and intelligence that it would without my arms wrapped so tightly around it with my plan. Here in lies my exploration of my creativity? I was asked the other day, what kind of speaker are you, extemporaneous(a word I had to look up which means with little or no preparation) or planned? This is a question I have been exploring over the year and have adamantly identified myself as indeed an extemparneous type but in the past week and with a revelation in my morning meditation I think I might just be a little bit of both. I am finding that creativity moves from the heart AND it has intelligence, clarity and power when it is expressed in a structure. As someone who’s primary drive in life is dedicated to discovering and unleashing the creativity at the center of my soul, you bet it’s my business to be in the inquiry of the quality and nature of creativity. What I mean by this is that with my recent exploration of creativity I am finding myself abandoning such one sidedness with the idea that it’s only those who spontaneously unleash from the heart that win my respect of their creativity. It is true that creativity is and must be unleashed from the heart but I think it can be supported, magnified and gain clarity and therefore power if there is some structure provided for it’s flow. Now I am seeing more broadly as I begin to understand that there can be a loose plan or structure, a framework for the creativity to flow. Without any real attachment, I have a desire that my creativity be a gift to those around me. I have a true desire to express myself beautifully, lovingly and impactfully. So, I study those who express their soul’s gift beautifully, lovingly and impactfully. What I am noticing is that a.) the language of the creator is always of the heart and b.) that some creators are best expressed through a framework of mild preparation. Mediocrity for me is doing less than my best. It is opening the nozzle of my creativity only partially and leaving knowing that I could have opened it up all the way. Simply in that knowing I feel the presence of mediocrity. I am again breaking my agreements with mediocrity and tapping my creativity with the intention to open the nozzle all the way, which is why for now I will also prepare a strong framework for my creativity to flow. If you are wondering where this is all coming from I will tell you that recently I had two opportunities to be creative in healing forums. First, I chaired a giant meeting and second, I led a meditation at church. In both cases I left with the feeling that I had re-engaged my agreements with mediocrity. In both cases I did little to prepare. Because my life is the tapestry of my creativity and there is no other higher aspiration than for my creativity to be lovingly unleashed, these two instances are rich opportunities for my growth. I could just let them go or I can pay attention to the “bummer” feeling that I felt and recognize that it is pointing to an area of my growth. I am sober to tap into my greatness, to recognize your greatness and to participate in this world in profound and powerful ways. The most powerful way to participate in life, in my eyes, is to be the most authentically creative expression of love that I can be. Dedicate yourself to this with me.