(it is not) enough

Are you centered?

Are you grounded?

Do you know how to live a centered, grounded life?

Do you know how to become centered, grounded at will?

It is not enough to know things. Data. Scientific knowledge. These are nothing but tools. And, tools in the hands of a madman are weapons.

You were born with tools that are still relevant, regardless of what is going on in the world. You don’t need to rely upon the tools of (hu)mankind, because you have the tools of humanity.

The tools of humanity are:

radical love

curiosity

breath

movement

creativity

None of these tools can be turned against the possessor without the possessor’s permission. What we call the mind is truly curiosity. When thinking ceases being curious and remains constant in a particular direction outside of curiosity, the mind is now the mindless.

We use our creativity outside of curiosity combined with breath and radical love, and we create needless chaos.

Chaos often looks like rules. Rules that should be followed no matter what. Rules that have paradoxes built into them.

Many will tell you life, itself, is chaos. But, what evidence do we have of that? The acts of humankind are often chaotic, but humankind has moved outside of life. Humankind has sought, for many years, to control and manipulate life rather than be an example of life. That is chaos at its finest.

The idolatry of the human mind, of human thought, is the misuse of humanity’s tools and will always lead to more harm than benefit. We are not the epitome of life; therefore, our thinking is not the epitome of thought.

We idolize ourselves to our own peril.

Let us put down the tools of (hu)mankind. Those tools are:

righteousness

fear

comparison

polarity

condemnation

These are the tools (weapons) of an imperfect being striving for unattainable perfection. Radical love can assimilate any of those tools (weapons).

Because radical love is an inherently assimilating force and our human nature is radical love, we are always striving toward assimilation… even when we are allowing our humanity to be weaponized.

Assimilation is not the opposite of individualism. Assimilation as a result of radical love does not mean we all became the same. It simply means we all become one. And, since we are all one, anyway, radical love does not alter our status.

Radical love simply enhances what is already here.

Have you ever been in love with someone and they looked so very beautiful and attractive to you? But, when you were no longer in love with that person, you looked at them and wondered what you ever saw in them.

That is the power of radical love. It helps us to see the beauty all around us and enhances our powers of attraction. But, the attraction is only for everyone’s benefit. That is what healing is all about.

Radical love is the simplest antidote to idolatry.

Will you try it?

photo courtesy of Will O at unsplash

permission to disagree

The internet is a fascinating space full of thoughts. Thoughts and ideas of all sorts abound on the internet, and nowhere is that more apparent than in the comment sections.

I love comment sections, but I have to be in the mood to peruse them. I have to know myself and be content within my current emotional state in order to handle the comment sections with any finesse and grace.

Comment sections are the canvas of your global asshole’s pièce de résistance. You can find so much underbelly in the comment sections. But, underbelly makes the best bacon.

Bacon is a great euphemism for how we all manage our cultural differences. Pork bacon is controversial on the global front. Those who live in their own cultural bubbles may not realize it, but a great number of humans have never eaten pork bacon. For those in those cultural bubbles, pork bacon is the standard. Until turkey bacon was a thing, folks who eat pork probably had no idea there were other sorts of bacon.

I grew up eating beef bacon and I maintain that pork bacon can never compare. Pork bacon is too salty and too wasteful. It’s mostly fat and don’t we all know that the body stores toxins in fat? And, that pigs are literally fed anything? Most pork bacon stinks when you cook it. I rarely buy it, but when I do, I only buy organic pork bacon. It doesn’t stink up my house and it tastes a lot better.

It’s also expensive. Turns out, treating pigs like living beings worthy of the best life has to offer (if you can obtain the best within captivity) is not popular among the folks who eat them. I have grown to see that you can tell a lot about a pork-eating people by the way they treat their pigs. If their pigs are used as corpulent dumpsters, you know what kind of value system you’re working within. It will tell you a lot about their society.

I don’t want that pork bacon to be the standard for anything. Do you?

Christians are not, technically, supposed to eat pork, but you can’t tell that by looking in most of their refrigerators. Then, there are cultural Jews, ethnic Jews, and religious Jews. They all have the pork conversation. (I don’t know what happened to the Hebrews.) And, Muslims, of course, don’t eat pork. Except when they hang around Christians too much. And, try to be too American.

Pork is an entire thing, is my point.

One of my favorite things about Zen Buddhists is that they don’t eat meat… unless it’s offered. Like, there’s an entire vegetarian expectation, but if you’re not the one killing or buying the animal flesh, don’t be too picky. Some religions would have you believe you’re going to suffer through all eternity if you don’t follow the dietary dictates. Zen Buddhists are like “calm your tits”. Around food, anyway. Still not okay for the monks to touch a woman.

So much disagreement among humans about what’s most important, isn’t there? Isn’t it beautiful?

I find it nourishing and humbling and gorgeous that there is so much variety of thought and behavior among human beings. “Harm none and do what you will” is a completely ridiculous notion, but it’s the guiding notion of many of us.

We are all harming someone. Most often, ourselves.

And, that’s okay. I think to accept that you, a human being, are a harmful entity no matter how much you attempt not to be can be a realization of freedom. But, that, too, is dependent upon personal stance. Some of us thoroughly enjoy being hard on ourselves. We don’t like giving ourselves grace.

As someone who enjoys freedom, I’ve come to respect restriction. I’ve come to accept that sometimes, expansion feels overwhelming and people need walls to feel comfortable and safe. The rules and strictures we apply to our lives are a skin. Some of us shed our skin regularly. Some of us remain small. Some of us simply add more skin as we grow.

One of my favorite lines in a song can be found in Christian rapper KB’s song I Am Not the One. He says, “It ain’t a thick skin, it’s a new heart.” I have found that the nuance of that line is where I have landed. In comments sections, in deli sections, in relative time and space, I have learned that the skin is less important than the heart. If the heart is calibrated correctly, the skin becomes less of an issue.

With that heart, disagreement becomes a pleasure, an example of how beautifully diverse we are. I don’t need or want your agreement; I want to know your heart.

No matter where we stand on the question of pork bacon, we all have hearts. I love to see even the closed ones. Don’t you?

my new religion

Once, I received a religious pamphlet. I looked at it, read it, and wondered how the world would be different if we pushed a different kind of religion onto one another. Rather than a religion that uses shame to mold us into a diminutive version of ourselves, a religion that uses truth to expand and fill us. I imagine the pamphlet would say something like:

1- You Are Perfect

Everything you do is for the benefit of yourself and others.
Every thought you think is wise and full of creative power.
Your heart is loving and following it is never wrong.
You are a righteous being, even when you don’t realize it.


2- You Are Strong

Every step you take, every move you make is the correct one.
It will take you where you want to go.
You can make all your dreams come true.
No one can stop you from being who and what you want to be.
Persevere when you feel challenged.
Rest when you feel challenged.
When you stop moving, that is the right time for stillness.
To recognize the desire for rest is strength.
To take a rest is strength.
To move is strength.
To not move is strength.
There is only strength.


3- We Are Here for Each Other

There are many of us here so that we can work together.
We are here to provide for each other.
We are here to comfort each other.
We are here because we all have needs 
and our number one need is for each other.
Sometimes we will be together in motion.
Sometimes we will be together in silence.
Sometimes we will be together in distance.
When one gets up, another sits down.
We create this world together and we are all vital to this life.


4- We Promise to Meet Our Needs

When one is hungry, we will provide food.
When one is cold, we will provide warmth.
When one is lonely, we will provide companionship.
Whatever anyone needs, we will provide.
That is why there are so many of us: 
to meet everyone’s needs in a variety of ways.
Together, we have enough to meet the needs of all of us.
We exist for each other.  

Rejoicing in our joy, not suffering over our suffering, is what makes someone a friend. ~Friedrich Nietzsche~

your mission, should you choose to accept it

Right now is an important time in our collective experience. This planet needs to be guided by those who are rooted in and growing in Love. There is a peace and an awareness that comes on the energy of Love, because Love is the only real truth. Love defies reason, has no explanation. Love simply is.

If you know this, if you live in this awareness, it is time to level up. It’s easy to level up in Love. Love does all the work.

Remember that you are simply a conduit in this world. You are the temple within which Love is stored and the point of storage is so that something is contained until the one storing it comes back to bring it back out, again.

Love stored is almost pointless. Love exists to spread like an invasive species. Love exists to cover and enmesh everything it touches. Love is like the most pervasive and contagious virus in existence.

But, it doesn’t make you sick. Quite the opposite. It heals everything it touches. Love is the healing vibration. Love is the awakening energy. Love is the clarifying touch. Love is truth.

Your job, as a contagious sort, full to the brim with this Love energy, is to spread Love far and wide. To fling it to the farthest reaches of the planet, of the universe, of the multiverse.

That’s your single job as a human being.

Here is a game to play, to help you realize the power of Love.

Sit quietly, holding someone else’s hands. Form a circle if there are enough of you. Everyone does the following:

Close your eyes and envision a white light coming from your heart and your mind. This white light represents Love.

Imagine that light spreading. It’s spreading within your body. Now, it’s leaking outside your body. Now, it’s surrounding your body.

Now, the light is spreading out into the space around your body. Think for a moment of everyone you’ve ever known, ever seen, even the folks you don’t remember.

See those people in your mind’s eye. See the web connecting you to them. Send the light into that web, into everyone connected to that web.

Send a message with the light: You are loved. Raise your vibration. It is time to raise your vibration and spread Love.

Hold that thinking for as long as possible or desired as a group. When you’re ready to stop, just open your eyes and go about your life.

false humility is a crime

If you’re a good person, just admit it. No one really cares.

This is what I’ve learned in life: the only people who are judging you by how good you are are the messy folks. And, they only judge you because they feel so horrible about themselves.

When they start cleaning themselves up, they judge you less.

Other good people just like being around you. They probably haven’t even had a coherent thought about your goodness, yet. They just feel good when they’re around you and that’s a good thing. It can be scary out there with all the people.

I don’t like it when good people can’t admit that they’re good people. There’s always a discussion about it and a kind of embarrassment. Why? We’re supposed to be good. It’s not exceptional, it’s the human default.

I think people tend to confuse goodness with perfection. No one is claiming that, I hope. I’m certainly not. I’m a good person. Why? Because I want the best for everyone, I tend to have good intentions, and I enjoy helping folks.

I’m just a basic human.

You can find these characteristics and tendencies in your normal 2-year-old. There’s absolutely nothing spectacular about being a good person, so I feel unable to get a big head about this.

It says a lot about what we have been programmed toward that we think goodness needs to be celebrated. Basic human decency has become a limited commodity.

Because we have normalized inhumanity, we find true humanity awe-inspiring.

Does that make sense?

Nope. Doesn’t make sense, at all. But, that’s what we’ve created: a world in which we think being bad is normal and being good is not as normal.

Both are normal, but we are training ourselves to look for the bad more than the good.

It probably started with our parents. They pointed out things we shouldn’t do. We had to pay attention to that. Some scientists will tell you this is human nature, to be more mindful of what’s bad. I don’t think they’re correct. Just because something is a statistical norm and people talk and write about it often doesn’t mean it’s human nature.

But, kids tend to want to please their adults. So, we were kids and we wanted to please our adults and because we weren’t perfect for your typical capitalist or patriarchal model of living, adults pointed out ways we needed to improve.

Some kids take that a lot harder than others. Some adults are harsher about it than necessary. Sometimes, you get a combination: really sensitive kid with really harsh adult. That’s a combustible combo.

But, it happens.

And, it also happens in a kind of reverse. We get those really sensitive adults who are quite horrible at providing appropriate boundaries. The kids in their lives could benefit from more rigidity and less fluidity, but they can’t bring themselves to provide it. And, if you get that kind of adult raising a really strong-willed kid, who knows what can happen? (Assholes, generally, but it’s all a crap shoot.)

One thing I enjoy about assholes (while we’re on the topic) is that they tend to lack humility. I find that refreshing. I enjoy people who just are who they are. However, that is also a tendency I dislike, because a lack of humility is often coupled with a lack of empathy. I don’t enjoy that.

What I had to learn was that what I really didn’t enjoy was false humility. Real humility, genuine humility is beautiful. People who know they aren’t the most important aspect of life, who know there’s a lot of mystery to living… I enjoy that. And, that’s all humility is.

False humility is what I see when people can’t accept any accolades for their amazingness. We should be able to celebrate one another because we are, each one of us, absolutely amazing! Our bodies are amazing, our minds are amazing, our abilities are amazing. Why would we choose to never acknowledge that? Especially when we live in societies and cultures that want us to dislike ourselves and mold ourselves to unnatural expectations?

Just because you’re not “that special” doesn’t mean that you’re not special at all. Of course you’re special! You are a mystery in the flesh. How did you even become you when all you began as was a clot of blood? Look at you… blood all grown up.

Don’t downplay that. And, don’t let it go to your head. That’s real humility.

trust is truth turned inward

You can’t trust what you don’t know.

Most of us don’t know ourselves. We know what other people have told us about ourselves. We know what our families wanted from us. We know what society tells us to do. We know what our friends think about us.

But, most of us don’t know ourselves. And, you can’t trust what you don’t know.

Now, knowledge can be deceptive, so you shouldn’t believe everything you think you know. But, knowing yourself should be a pretty high life priority. You might lie to yourself about you. You probably do.

Here’s a popular lie many of us tell ourselves: I’m not a good person.

Can I tell you a secret?

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You don’t have to be a good person. Being a good person is overrated. I was a good person for most of my life and folks just abused me because they were messed up and saw my goodness as something to possess. They thought close proximity to MY goodness would make THEM better somehow. It would make them acceptable. They used my goodness as a reason to tell themselves it was okay that they weren’t doing things they should have been doing.

But, if they had known how amazing they were INHERENTLY, none of that would have happened.

Being a good person is a good way to get screwed over by other people.

Lots of people realize this and they tell you that’s why you shouldn’t become a good person. But, that’s not what I’m going for here. I simply adore being a good person. It’s a lot of fun.

Just because some (lots?) of us are messed up, doesn’t mean I have to hate being a good person. I’m just stating that being a good person is not automatic insulation against the crap of other people. Crap comes. But, what do you do with it?

That’s where being a good person comes in handy. Because I’m a good person, I tend to compost it. Manure is great for gardening and I’m growing a lot of food.

Thankfully, I’ve stockpiled a lifetime of crap, so you can keep yours to yourself. But, if you’re not a good person, THAT’S OKAY.

Just do good stuff.

If you tend to do messed up stuff, doing good stuff will make you feel inordinately good about yourself and then you might stop doing crappy stuff. (This is where a good therapist can help. Changing poor habits into decent habits takes a lot of support and since you tended to do messy stuff, you might not have a lot of supportive people around you.)

But, if you’re just a normal person, doing good stuff will make you feel good and you’ll enjoy the feeling, so you’ll keep doing it. You might need to overcome laziness and the emotional bloat that comes with being too self-congratulatory, but, in the end, you’ll keep doing good stuff and you’ll find that you like yourself more.

That’s when you know you’ve tapped into the secret of all good people: Doing good feels good.

Most good people are selfish. We supremely enjoy the chemical sensations we derive from doing good and being happy. So, we strive to create lives that look and feel good and happy. Anyone can do this. It’s not a big deal. Some of us have been socialized (programmed) to be this way and some of us got this way despite how we were socialized.

It just feels good. Most people keep doing what feels good.

In my case, I derive a lot of good feeling from being logical. It makes more logical sense to be a good person than otherwise. I like feeling good, I like the people around me to feel good. Win-win. I prefer win-win situations over every other kind. Who wouldn’t?

Well, we live in a society (I’m talking about America, in particular) that says win-lose situations are not only better, but they’re really the only kind. It’s like a tradition. We get off on win-lose dynamics and we go into situations hoping we win and the other party loses.

That’s, like, our entire thing as a nation.

And, it’s self-defeating. If, by chance, we are usually winning, the other party is usually losing… which is only going to bite us in the butt in the end. Most people don’t like losing. Including us. And, if they feel they are losing too often, they start to feel badly about themselves, which causes them to stop thinking rationally. Or maybe they become hyper-rational. Anything to win!

This is how we get ALL social ills, by the way.

Hurt people hurt people. It’s a human law. A more forgettable human law among messier folks is that hurt people also help people.

You can’t know ahead of time what folks are going to do with their hurt. So, the best, most reasonable idea is to provide as little hurt as possible.

Everyone’s not a witch. Everyone can’t just snap their fingers and turn bad into good. That level of magic is easy to get to, but not everyone feels capable of getting there. Many of us simply hurl around what’s been given to us, and when we’ve been given hurt, we throw hurt around.

And, doing so just makes us feel badly about ourselves.

And, that leads to mistrusting ourselves.

Because, bad people can’t be trusted, can they? And, if you cannot trust yourself, all your relationships with other people are circumspect.

Many people think they have problems with other people, but they really have problems with themselves.

All our relationships are founded in our relationships with ourselves. If my relationship with myself is full of deception, antipathy, and fear, then all my other relationships will reflect that.

Now, I’m not promising you wonderfully amazing relationships once you clean up your relationship with yourself. People are messy. Relationships are largely unpredictable (unless you’re dealing with someone with some pretty intense personality problems). What I am promising you is this:

When your relationship with yourself is good and loving and kind, messy relationships kinda fall by the wayside. They’re not as prevalent in your life. Messy people tend to stay away from you. When the folks who like you are going through messy things, they try to keep the mess off you. (If you value the relationships, don’t let them. Let them feel what it’s like to know someone is there for them no-matter-what.)

The thing about having a good relationship with yourself is that everything feels easier. It’s not as hard to resist the desire to save other people. It’s simpler to be honest with everyone and recognize that sometimes the most honest thing to do is to shut your trap.

Everything in life just feels better when you trust yourself.

So many of us grapple with self-doubt and self-recrimination. We haven’t earned our own trust.

Today, go out and do something that shocks even you. Do something that truly leaves you open for intense scrutiny and possible condemnation, but that you know in your heart that you need to do in order to be true to yourself. Go out and do something that proves to yourself that you are your own best friend.

At the end of the day, you are the one yammering along inside your head.

You are the one keeping yourself awake with all that mercenary thinking.

You are the one feeling that intense anxiety every second of your life.

You are the one lying to yourself and telling yourself things will get better in spite of all evidence to the contrary.

You are the one refusing to walk in faith.

What is faith? Simply believing in something larger than yourself. And, folks have a difficult time doing that when they don’t even believe in themselves, yet.

Be authentic. And, when you’re not being authentic, be honest about that. Know why. Remind yourself of your inherent worth and value and goodness.

Because here’s another secret:

We’re all good. Some of us just have an easier time remembering it every day.

Yeah, I actually believe that.

Even the person who has done the most horrible things to others is actually a good person. They just got hurt. And, rather than healing they chose to keep hurting.

It happens.

We’re all good. We’re not perfect, just good.

And, folks… that’s good enough. When we trust ourselves and know ourselves, we’re fine with being good.

f(emin)ist

i want.

i want and want and want.

and the third syllable, the one that should mitigate my wanting, my desire… the third syllable whose job it is to transform my lustful nature into one of patience,

it fails me, again.

i don’t lust after the things society tells us we all lust after.

i lust after

freedom +

land +

babies.

i don’t want the man, just his seed.

seed.

what a ridiculous term, as the true seed lies within me.

the man has, at best, a fertilizer.

a root stimulant.

he can share it with me, like the answer to a math problem.

not a particularly challenging one,

just one in which i forgot a simple formula.

he rescues me with the answer. i’m to remember the formula myself.

isn’t that the way it is?

so,

i never lust after a man. i enjoy math and prefer the solitude in it.

i don’t want anyone giving me the answers.

i am not a cheat.

my want, my desire, my lust goes unsatisfied.

dissatisfied, more like. dissatisfied with the way everything has turned out, turns out.

om mane padme hum

it never quite obliterates the desire, that third syllable.

it never quiets my womanhood.

maybe it only works on men.

maybe it only works if you enjoy the answers more than you enjoy the formulas,

if you enjoy having more than you enjoy creating.

it never quiets my humanity.

the parts of me, the alls of me, the need for space cluttered with

trees +

moss +

soil as black as the shiniest skin.

i don’t need diamonds. society lies.

the only shine i require comes from the

sun and

skin with Kemetan ancestry and

eyes of one who delights in living.

babies are the gift we receive when we open ourselves to the mystery of life.

let me bask in the glow of a newborn,

let me become the succulent of the genus homo.

let me transform and transfer this desire into tangible means by way of

squatting and

birthing and

nurturing.

land + me + babies =

f(satisfaction)

people ain’t ****

Let’s start off with the poignant reminder that people are imperfect beings capable of committing heinous acts against one another.

Some of those heinous acts have been committed against me. Maybe some against you, too. And, that was NOT OKAY.

They had no right to do that. But they did it, anyway. So, now, I’m left holding a stinking pile of poop, probably covered in it, and no way to get clean. Really, really clean. As clean as I was before it happened.

FACT: I’m not perfect, either, and I’ve hurt folks, too.

I’m not about to discuss karma. You can berate yourself on your own time. I’m going to discuss acknowledgment.

I have had most of the people who claimed to love me hurt me in unforgivable ways. Maybe you have, too. I have the right to be angry with them for the rest of my life.

But, is that fair to me?

Let’s pretend for a second that I’m a saint. I’m suffering. I’m being martyred, maybe. And, because I’m being martyred, I have the right to be royally ticked off. I mean, you’re killing me and I did nothing truly wrong. I probably just told you something about yourself you didn’t want to hear. Maybe many, many times I told you the truth about yourself and rather than listening and doing better, you decided to shut me up. Permanently. Because you’re just that messed up, you’re just that far removed from the truth.

Is my righteous anger going to save my life?

Now, sometimes anger DOES save lives. But, right now, I’m already on the pyre. You’re about to set fire to me. Anger is going to do nothing to remove my body from this abysmal situation. Once again, you have decided that hurting me is a better choice than accepting me.

My anger will do nothing to change that.

So, should I be happy, then? If you wondered that in this moment, I’d like to point out that you’re more intelligent than that. That’s an immature question. It’s an emotion-based question rather than a logical one. I want you to get out of your feelings for a moment and get into your heart.

Oh. Did you think your heart is where your feelings reside? No, sorry, friend. Your heart is the most logical place in your consciousness. Your mind is where your feelings reside, because feelings are simply thoughts. Thoughts and beliefs and stuff we’ve decided to hold onto regardless of how reasonable or unreasonable they are.

So, jump into your heart space for a second. What’s there?

Some of us can’t do this right now and that’s okay. Come back later.

Those of us who can move forward, who can take the time to gaze (with our mind’s eye or whatever technique works for us) into our heart space, let’s do that. Take as much time as you need.

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So, what did you see?

Was it anger?

Was it fear?

Could you see anything, at all?

I’ve been gazing at my own heart space for a while, so I have forgotten what it feels like the first time you do this. These days, I see a blooming flower, all red and luscious. And, HUGE. When I first began, the flower wasn’t this big and didn’t take up so much room in my chest. Now, she’s ridiculously big. I can watch her open up whenever I want.

This is the truth of who we are.

We aren’t the messed up things folks did to us.

We aren’t the messed up feelings we carry around inside us.

We aren’t our anger.

Honestly, we are loving beings. The MOST loving beings! We are so full of love and compassion that it sometimes scares us because we haven’t quite learned to trust ourselves, yet.

That’s okay. We can work on that together. Learning to trust myself was the biggest Life Lesson of all, because all my life I had thought that I didn’t (or couldn’t) trust OTHER people. What I learned was that I don’t need to trust other people if I trust myself.

But, how do you do that?

9 books for your healing journey

Healing is a full-time job.

I’m sure you realize that. Maybe that’s why you don’t prioritize it, yet. Maybe that’s why you feel overwhelmed by it. Maybe that’s why you gave up everything to pursue it.

We all heal in our own ways and in our time.

At one point, I walked away from everything I knew and loved in order to heal. I wanted to make sure I was prepared for when the future needed me.

I had started my healing journey long before that, though. We like to think of the momentous decisions as “the healing beginning”, but when we think about it, we were opening space inside of us or challenging old habits and thoughts long before we saw evidence that we were changing.

Here are 9 book titles that are potentially life-changing. They offer different perspectives than the few that are most often regurgitated in our cultures. They talk about the power YOU have to create the life YOU want… and not in a monetary way.

Ready to blow your own mind? Here we go:

1. The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. This is an easy, quick read with a deep, profound message. Excerpt:

Humans agree to help each other suffer. If you have the need to be abused, you will find it easy to be abused by others. Likewise, if you are with people who need to suffer, something in you makes you abuse them.

2. Loving What Is by Byron Katie. This books shares an inquiry process. Excerpt:

If you think that alcohol makes you sick or confused or angry, then when you drink it, it’s as if you’re drinking your own disease. You’re meeting alcohol where it is, and it does exactly what you know it will do. So we investigate the thinking, not in order to stop drinking, but simply to end any confusion about what alcohol will do.

3. A Course in Miracles by Foundation for Inner Peace. This can be found in multiple volumes or a combined volume. Many groups exist around the world to go through this book together because it is a deep and intense work. Excerpt:

The world you see is but the idle witness that you were right. This witness is insane. You trained it in its testimony, and as it gave it back to you, you listened and convinced yourself that what it saw was true. You did this to yourself.

4. Succulent Wild Woman by SARK. This artistic book is fun and affirming. Excerpt:

Creative exploration will always result in mistakes, and if we fear those, we risk paralysis and a numb “good girl” mentality. Our morality may guide us in our sexual exploration. Is your morality yours, or the regurgitation of parents’ and/or religious beliefs?

5. Crystal Woman by Lynn V. Andrews. This is one book in a series about a woman’s adventures into her calling and shamanism. Better than fiction! This book is too full of magick to share an excerpt. You’re just going to have to read it for yourself, if you’re ready.

6. Finding Your Way in a Wild New World by Martha Beck. This is a “how to” book for journeying back to yourself. Lots of magick here, too. Excerpt:

After returning from Rwanda, I met with several of “my” master coaches (born wayfinders all) to discuss new ways we could earn a living doing exactly what we damn well please. I couldn’t help noticing that several of these people looked like they’d been enhanced with Photoshop. They were all glowy: their skin was clear, their eyes were radiant, and they seemed to have the continuous, resilient energy of small children. They happily chatted about the magic that had wrought this rejuvenation. Two words: green smoothies.

This cracks me up! Such a great way to lead into the smoothie life. Okay, moving on…

7. Pranic Healing by Choa Kok Sui. If you can find this book for a reasonable price or you are financially wealthy, buy this book. It will serve you for the rest of your life. This is a book about how to free the energy healer inside of you. Excerpt:

 A cancerous organ or part is clairvoyantly seen as dark muddy yellow and red. There is too much yellow and red prana in the affected area, resulting in the rampant growth of cancerous cells. This condition is brought about by an overactivated basic chakra, meng mein chakra, and solar plexus chakra. Although these chakras are overactivated, they are very depleted.

8. Plant Spirit Medicine by Eliot Cowan. This book centers on the energetic and spiritual offerings of plants, taking a few steps beyond herbalism. Excerpt:

Obviously plants do not have kidneys and bladders, but they store fluids and harbor the mysterious life spring just as we do. What is more, they will bring peace to our waters if we ask them to.

9. The Complete Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. This is another book that has inspired many groups as a sojourning tool. It is three books in one and guides the creative-spiritual connection. Excerpt:

By letting our soul speak first thing in the morning, we align ourselves with the Great Creator. Over the years, I have come to consider Morning Pages to be a valid form of meditation, perhaps a form uniquely suited to hyperactive Westerners.

Within these 9 books, you will find almost all the healing opportunities you require from a cerebral and physical perspective. I wish you well.

alright, stop what you’re doin’

cuz I’m about to ruin
the image and the style that you’re used to.
I look funny,
but, yo, I”m makin’ money, see,
so, yo world, I hope you’re ready for me.
Now, gather ’round,
I’m the new fool in town
and my sound’s laid down by the Underground.
I drank up all the Hennessy you got on your shelf,
so just let me introduce myself…

Everything above this line are someone else’s words and I’m operating from memory, so I hope I got them all correct. The words are probably copyright Digital Underground or someone from the group and/or some writer they worked with. Just so you know. Not my words, at all, and they don’t belong to me.

This was one of my fave songs as a teenager, though. ‘Humpty Dance’ was a riot, and even though my friend and I had no context for anything the guy was rapping about, we loved the song.

I remember one part, in particular, that we could not understand, no matter how many times we listened. The Hennessy line above. We had no idea what Hennessy was. Never heard of it, never saw it. We lived in a sheltered, religious, suburban world. Our parents didn’t drink and we didn’t hang around other youth who had parents who drank.

I remember rewinding the tape over and over, again, as we tried to make out what the rapper was saying. We finally settled on “heavy C”, even though it made no sense. The real lyrics didn’t make sense to us, either, so we just put in what we thought we were hearing. It was rap. Rap often made no sense to us.

We kept listening to it, though. I’m not sure why. Maybe the beats got to us. I remember listening to Tribe Called Quest daily. I remember sitting with the same friend and writing out the lyrics, because we just had to memorize a particular song and, honestly, we had no idea if Q-Tip was even speaking English sometimes.

I was in my 30s before I knew exactly what Digital Underground and Tribe Called Quest were talking about in many of their songs. Their music wasn’t made for girls like my friend and I, but we poured over it and loved it, anyway.

That’s how much of life is, isn’t it?

Often, we move through this world having no idea what’s really going on, but we love it, anyway.

We have no idea what folks are talking about, but we love hearing them talk, anyway.

Attraction works like that. You don’t know why you’re attracted. Maybe if you could figure it out, you’d turn the attraction off. Instead, you just feel the way you feel and do your best to muddle through any confusion. Maybe you adjust your perceptions, just so you can feel like you made a little sense of what’s happening.

And, maybe it will take you over a decade to decode things. Maybe, like me as a teen, you make up words for the bits you don’t understand and you keep moving. Life is too busy to stop and research what’s going on. There’s really no one to ask. There’s no Google for real life and real problems, right? You just figure out what you can and move it along. You do your best.

It’s okay that you’ve been doing that. It’s okay that you didn’t have the time or the energy or the desire to figure out the truth back then. Perfectly okay. The world did not stop spinning just because you didn’t know what was going on. That’s as it should be.

But, in this moment… breathe in.

And, in this moment… breathe out.

Keep breathing, keep living in the moment.

The past is gone. That confusion happened. But, if you stop what you’re doing now, you’ll be amazed by what you are able to understand.