The Unseen Disadvantage

THE RACE 

The first runner is 100 feet ahead of almost everyone 

but the second runner is very close behind him

The third runner is 50 feet behind the first two

The last runner is a shocking 100 feet the behind the first two. 

*

Now a loudspeaker comes on revealing 

there is one last runner who has not even appeared on the horizon yet. 

An aerial view is offered of the running course, 

We now see each of the runners had a different starting point. 

*

And now we see the runner who has not yet appeared on the horizon.

The distance he has had to cross is incomparably longer

than any other runner in the race.

*

Though he is not yet in sight on the horizon, 

this view reveals 

the last runner to be miraculous. 

The greater distance he has traveled is now witnessed.

His endurance, perseverance, and relentless striving 

to conquer the disadvantage 

has revealed the true victor.  

The crowd cheers, reveling in his achievement. 

But he can’t hear them or see them. 

The distance is too great. 

He is looking ahead for the runners he can’t catch up to. 

He feels his race is lost, and begins to despair. 

*  *  *  *  * 

We can’t know another’s journey by watching the finish line. 

If we can’t see the whole picture, 

we can’t know who is in the lead, and who is falling behind

“The 10,000 things rise and fall without cease.” Lao Tzu. 

*

When we see our neighbor who lives on the street

We can consider his unseen disadvantage 

that has led to the disadvantage we can see.

Compassion may replace short-sighted judgment.

*

When we see someone doing so well 

that our own life suddenly seems insignificant

We can consider the distance 

that we have traveled

both within and externally.

*

And if after consideration

we find no justification

for the lack of tantamount achievement in our own life,  

let’s not allow comparison to the well-doer to become self annihilation. 

Let’s allow the comparison to inspire the fire to Strive; 

that it may be received with empowering Gratitude 

and never the obstacle of resentment. 

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Light

Today I was blessed to meet my neighbor-without-a-home, Bryant, and give him a whole cooked chicken and three Christmas cookies. (I ate the other three.) They say money can’t buy happiness, but a few dollars bought me SO MUCH HAPPY!!! : )

Tonight The Voice asked:

What Light do you want to Shine on the world?

I don’t mean information.

What does this Light look like?

What Feelings Awaken, in you, and in all who Experience this Light?

Does this LIght make you terribly Happy?

Does it make your Eyes Shine?

Does this Light Elevate those around You?

When is the last time you Jumped for Joy?

Is this Light your Magic Play, in your own Way?

Always ask and never answer.

To answer is to close the door

on the Beauty of your Child’s Wonder.

Never replace WONDER with explanation, justification, serious grown-up hiding places.

Be Pure, Innocent, Natural, without Guile

LOVE!

Be Open and share your Blessings.

Remember how that made you feel.

Be as a little child

As your Great Teacher commanded.

Never know.

Always Wonder!

It is in Wonder,

That this Light Will Shine Through

And you will be You.

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Synchronistic Squirrels, Lovestock, and Bliss.

I like blogging. I don’t know how interesting my explorations are to anyone else, but it is quite a gift to search the soul in writing and be able to declare it to the world, regardless of who may or may not actually read it. I know the Universe has Wi-Fi, and She is glued to every word. That’s enough reason to post!

Sometimes when I write with Universal Guidance in mind, things can happen. A prayer or a wish might get an answer. I believe the same is true for everyone.

In last night’s blog, I asked, what would I be like, if old party girl nature and New Consciousness combined? Today brought an answer to that question.

I woke up, feeling I needed a Sunday. “No work. Just do things you like,” The Voice said.  Its been a while since I’ve allowed that. I walked to the park, and I read Mary Shelley while nestled in the great roots of the best tree there. Earthing: it heals the body, and that’s not just hippie talk.

Sun beams peaked through the leaves on my skin, my bare feet were in the grass, people were happy all around, fit, exercising, dogs playing, kids, and I’m Kindling the Romantic Era, taking a break from Spiritual/Truth/Yoga Literature for the first time in four years. It was great. At a point, I knew it was time to move on. So I got up to take the short stroll back home, for another solitary night, which has become my life since my last break-up. I’ve needed to Cocoon.

But Fate Intervened. As I turn down my street, walking down the sidewalk, a squirrel suddenly comes out from behind the tree I’m right next to, at head level. We are eye to eye, spitting distance apart. I love squirrels. This moment of close communion was special to me. I’ve never been so close. Our stare-down was of considerable duration. He won, but only because . . .

A car turns down my street, slows down, and two guys wave me over and ask, “Hey, are you going to Lovestock?” And I asked, “What’s that?” And they said, oh, its at the Avalon in Hollywood. I said I’d go online and look it up.

So I did, and its a GODSEND! Its HEAVEN ON EARTH! Is an actual place, outside of my head, that is liberal and loving enough for my wildest dreams! I called a cab, and went to Hollywood. I didn’t even change my clothes. I figure if the guys in the car thought I was headed there, I must look the part.

When I arrived I was THRILLED to see it was the diametric opposite of the typical L.A. scener snobbery in clublife.

Outside the Avalon, it was all hippies, a folk music singer in the outdoor sign in area, telling us how to save our drinking water. Lots of face paint, belly dancers, hippies from back in the day, yoga men and women, tribal looks, Burning Man vibe, gay, straight, drag, multiracial, wild, tatts. My cab driver says, “This is like the 1960’s! My Mom dressed like that!”

I am in Heaven. People are happy, and loving, authentic Sadhana practitioners, Consciousness Seekers, Truth Trippers, not a faked vibe to make the scene. This was Authentic.

Inside, there is EVERYTHING. Its the coolest nightclub/dayclub (4pm – 12am) but CONSCIOUS! PRESENT. EVERYONE is THERE! GREAT VIBES! The Beautiful People, the Hey I’m Just Me People, older people, little kids, babies many races, Differently Abled, many Religions, gurus in turbans, people in yoga wear, people dressed as faeries and other fun things!

It was LOVE. People walking with “Free Hugs” signs. I got and gave so many hugs, and I have not been really hugged or even physically touched since my break-up in March. O! Human contact! Muchly needed. But here’s the Truly Beautiful Part:

The event was FREE! No MONEY! No capitalism, no materialism no Ulterior Motive, No Angle. With Free Vegan Food, and GOD, it was GOOD! They had a giant steel or tin Wok, with a big fire, and everyone was hanging out, eating. In the Big Area, they had DJ’s, Live Drummers, Digigeroos, Tibetan Bowls, Gongs, Big Video Screen with Chakra Mandalas, Everyone DANCING LIKE Free Spirited Hippies, GYPSIES. O! YES! YES! PLEASE!

After five minutes inside the place, I told myself, I Never Want To Leave Here. EVER. This was the closest thing to Authentic Human Unity, and Heaven On Earth I’d ever experienced. All As One.

I danced like I’ve never danced, and then the music softens at points, and a healer comes out and guides you to get in touch with your energies, release your pain, connect and embrace your inner child, chakra work, all kind of healing work, everyone doing it all together in the spirit of celebration and dance! Belly Dancers, live musicians, speakers, healers, and the party never stops, the healing within the music.

Upstairs there were Healing Rooms and different healing arts practitioners, and that was the most mystical part of the night. I sat on the floor with another woman, and we meditated together while we were waiting for our respective turns. Everyone was meditating, doing yoga, eating that far out food, which was GOOD, and gave a very healthy natural energy.

There was no meanness. No cruising, no men or women hitting on you like at a nightclub, it was just LOVE. It was PURE. It was INNOCENT. IT was FREE, in every sense of the word. We were all like children.

At the bar, you could order a whole coconut, they it cut open in front of you with a machete and stick a straw in it. They had all sort of healthy drinks. The only commercial thing I saw was Red Bull, but again, I didn’t spent much time at the bar.

People were hugging strangers, saying Namaste, Sat Nam, all my favorite words! There would be pauses in the music, and we’d all do Kundalini Chanting! Sanksrit chants I’m doing at home but now with a huge place full of kindred spirits! Can This Be Real? A world of party people who have awakened? Oh God, Sign Me Up! I’ve been in my shell too long. I didn’t know this existed until today.

The pauses in the music, the collective healing, releasing, daring to Love, O! Its was the most beautiful, transcendent, elevating, healing sensation. A Natural High. Toward the end of the night, the Healer, with Live Tribal Drumming and Digideroo behind him, told us he was going to stop the music, and when he did, he wanted us to mingle, silently, and look closely into the eyes of one another, throughout the room, and stare until you see the Divine spark within the Other, and allow them to do the same with you, and only then move on to another.

This was so amazing. I saw the light in the eyes of so many different kind of humans up close, and the Light was Always The Same! Not a word shared, yet a level of intimacy I haven’t  felt face to face in so very long, and it was again, and again, with so many strangers, and so many different types of people, all as One: Gay, Straight, Black White, Normal, Wild, Guru, Punk Rocker, Men, Women, Undecided, Perfect Muscle Bound Specimens of Humanity, people who may have never exercised a day in their life, Differently Abled People, Exceptionally Abled People (you should have seen the Yogi Hula Hoop Woman with her Chakra Light Hoops, Balancing, Spinning, never missing a beat!)
Senior Citizens, Little kids and babies, skinny people, not so skinny people, people of all kinds with one thing in common: all smiling, with Light in their Eyes. God it was BEAUTIFUL!!!

With the silent eye to eye staring, there was a little nervousness at first, but then you see something in the eyes, and this smile breaks out, even a laugh of joy breaks out with both of you, and a very authentic mutually desired hug follows, not the stiff formality type of hug. The kind of hug you’ve only ever given someone you really love, but by the end of the Night, We Were All Love. Love can be so much BROADER than what we’ve restricted it to. Not sex, nothing like that. Just LOVE.

I’ve had friends for years, that I haven’t had a moment this intimate with, and tonight, I had 20 or 30 moments like this, maybe more. I was too blissful to count. So many hugs, gazing into one another’s eyes until we saw the Divine within. We were all sweating, but nobody cared. It was just Beautiful. Why can’t the whole world be like this?

My one on one with the Reiki Healer was Sacred. When I was finally allowed into the healing room, it was booked, but no pushing or impatience, the whole place was MEDITATIVE LOVE, PEACE AND JOY.  I was meditating with another woman, while we waited for our turn. It was nice to meditate with her. Then other people took our lead and joined us. I was #17 on the list, (which is a number that means big new beginnings for me) and the healer I was waiting for took her time with each healing. So after finally getting into the Healing Room, I was prepared to wait for hours. I was at peace. There was nowhere else on Earth I’d rather be. The Energy in there, the Love, was Amazing.

This healer had a very strong presence. She is very Whole Bodied and Physical with her Reiki. She is fit, long dreads, beautiful skin, and spiritual eyes shining with light. When she finished with her patient, she looked to me, but I told her I was pretty far down on her list. She said, ‘You’re here, now.’

There were a lot of Healers in that room. She was the first one you saw when you walked in. The moment I saw her, I knew she was the one. The moment she saw me, she wanted to jump me ahead in line. It was that kind of place, that kind of energy, those connections we don’t have explanations for yet. Her energy, her work, I still feel it working in me. She’s the real thing.

I felt happy before I came to her, but after this healing, I was in a different place. A good place. Sometimes around lots of people (especially these days without a cocktail) I can get nervous. But that nervousness was entirely gone now, and I flowed better with people; nothing terribly dramatic, people were already kind, just a greater sense of openness and kindness and flow. More smiles.

Then it was back into the main room and the magic already aforementioned, but at this point it felt MORE magic, because her healing delivered me into a new energy, a new Openness, a new Consciousness.

What I liked best was the Unity. All kinds of people, music, everyone as One: children, older hippies who may well have been at the original Woodstock, people in all kinds of bodies, no barriers, all Love.

In the food line, people talking, sharing names: “Isn’t this amazing?” “I’ve never experienced anything like this!” “It gives you hope for the whole world.” Collective meditations and energy sends to Syria, to our leaders, to anywhere in the world that needs healing. We were in the vortex. It was a High Consciousness, and every face reflected happiness, openness, and non-judgment. Every face was Love.

There was a wall, where you could write a wish for the world on a piece of chakra red paper, and put it into a slot. I made three wishes: Unity, The End Of All Prejudice. and The Compassionate Distribution Of Wealth: No one On Earth Without A Home or Going Hungry, Ever Again.

It felt so good to make those wishes, especially the last one. Its the thing that gets my heart the most. Were I to win the Lottery, this is where my money would go.

We chanted, we danced, we sang, we prayed, we healed, we shared a meal, and it was ALL FREE. So much MONEY in this event at the Avalon, ASTONISHING sound and video system, amazing food. Gurus in turbans, Healers giving their gifts away, everyone was a volunteer. They didn’t want anything in return. They just wanted you to be happy. Really. No catch. It really is the most beautiful thing. The world can seem so harsh, so unloving, so mercenary. And that world felt a million miles away and a million years ago, compared to the world in Consciousness on this Night.

There’s more info at lovestockfestival.com

The site doesn’t really capture the experience. The singer with the violin was just amazing, with dance music and tribal drumming driving. Everything from tribal, techno, to real hand drumming, digideroo, Tina Turner, Cream, man, they had everything cool, from the Stone Age, to the 60’s to the Future. I think they even played something from the 1920’s, and it all blended as one, just like the people.

So in my last blog I asked, what would it look like if ZenGirl and PartyGirl became two sides of one coin? And today the Universe sent two messengers in a car, on my very short walk home, to tell me about Lovestock.

And had the special synchronistic staring squirrel (ha!) not delayed me, would I have intersected with those two messengers?

If I had gotten up from my tree at the park one minute sooner or later, would I have missed the most beautiful collective human experience I’ve known?

It wasn’t a just a great night. Its a Life Changer. Knowing there are other Souls who See past this mercenary culture’s lies of division, Greater Than, Less Than, has left me unable to view the world in quite the same way ever again, and I would not be surprised if the same is true for everyone I shared Love and Consciousness with tonight. People were in Bliss, and moved to Tears. I don’t believe any of us will forget this night. I know I won’t.

I Know Now True Unity Exists Because I Have Experienced It. Its not a fantasy, or an unrealistic Ideal. I was There, and I cannot Un-Experience It. I feel the Universe gave me a Guided Experience today that will change my world view for the better, and I am Grateful. I don’t want to be cynical. I want to be Love.

Sometimes when I write with Universal Guidance in mind, things can happen. A prayer or a wish might get an answer. I believe the same is true for everyone.

Try it. What will your messengers bring you?

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My Littlest Spirit Guide

Outside my window, off my balcony, is a big bushy tree with beautiful orange flowers, tons of them. When the setting sun hits them, they are even more beautiful. The hummingbirds that frolic, fight, and fly about the tree seem to have a ritual in the time just before sunset. They are exceptionally tiny creatures with orange breasts, many the size of a bumblebee. I watch them every dusk and I know their patterns.

Having very recently separated from a nine year relationship, and only now realizing I have unprocessed grief, these tiny friends have been a great comfort.

I began to notice hummingbirds years ago, after my mother died. The day she died, one flew up and down directly outside my front window incessantly. Quite a show. I was sad, and not wanting the distraction. Rather than close the drapes, I went to a room in the back of the house. I opened the blinds, and there was another hummingbird, or the same one, flying up and down in that same crazy way. Both times this happened, I had the absurd feeling that the bird was  trying very hard to get my attention.

What was going on? At that point, I wondered if there was truth to the multicultural, multi century belief in Spirit Animals. It seemed to be saying, “Look how happy I am! Look how free I am!” Then I felt a sudden chill, and the thought came that this felt like a message from my mother.

Tonight, I’m wondering about Spirit Animals again.

My ritual in my new apartment, is to go out on my balcony every night at seven pm and watch the hummingbirds on the flowers as the sun sets. It is usually a happy time. But tonight, I felt sad. My ex (very recently separated) is meeting an online romance on this night, who is quite probably the new love. The sorrow came on very suddenly. I thought I was past that, and wasn’t at all sure why I cared so.

I decided to go back indoors. If I were to weep I would not wish be seen. But then I noticed something different. One hummingbird was not flying about. It was on a wire, the nearest one to me, directly across from me, looking in my direction. All the other little birds flew about gracefully and/or fiercely, but this one did not move. If a fierce hummingbird chased it away, it would flit up for a moment, and come right back to the same spot. It just perched right across from me, looking in my direction.

Instead of going indoors, I decided to consent to the stare-down with the little one, and I thought, I’ll sit here till the sun leaves the flowers, and all the birds go to their hideaway, as they do every night. And the sun did leave, and all the hummingbirds flew away, except this one. It remained. Directly in front of me. Did not move. At that point, I remembered the experience with my mother, and began to wonder about this little bird.

The beautiful album Anahat, by Bachan Kaur was softly playing through the window. I hadn’t noticed the music, until these words came drifting into the beginning night.

Don’t look back, open your heart
right now, is the perfect time to start
you don’t have to try, just let your self go
don’t ask why, ’cause you already know

The timing felt meant. A message to heed. At that point I knew it was time to let go, of this sunset and the past. I did let go. Then I stood up, and I bowed to my Littlest Spirit Guide, still on the wire, still staring my way, and it still did not move. As I closed the door upon the evening, I looked a final time at this little friend, and from this hummingbird I felt, “I’m not leaving you. I’m watching over you.”

How very welcome and timely.

Afterwards:

I came inside and looked up the Hummingbird as a Spirit Animal. These were the first words I found regarding the Hummingbird’s meaning in one’s life.

1. The hummingbird reminds you that you are missing the joy and sweet nectar of life by your narrow focus.

2. It might just be your departed loved one telling you that she’s watching over you so try to cheer up!

3. The Hummingbird is there to add Playfulness to your daily grind!

4. When dealing with challenges or negativity, call on the Hummingbird to bring you a positive outlook, and find your way out with optimism. 

I will, Little Friend. Thank you, muchly. I’d kiss you if I could! : )

Samuel

I met this man on the street, and he lives on the street, and there was something about him. He looked a bit like Hendrix, if Hendrix had lived and aged. He had soulful eyes, and he was holding a cup. I walked up and explained I didn’t have any bills, but I have change. He looked at me, and said, “You don’t need to give me a thing. You’re the first kind soul I’ve seen today. You’re open! And everyone else on this boulevard is closed. Look around.” And I did. And it was mostly true.

And we started talking, and this man is wise, and he’s spiritual, and he uses that term.

He said, “Go on, ask me anything you want. I can answer it.”

And I said, “What do you do when you feel scared?”

And he said, “What kind of scared are you feeling?”

And I said, “The world just seems so complicated and technology driven and impersonal and out of control, and I’m trying to adapt and survive, but I feel overwhelmed by it.” (My first days in the city after six years in a forest very little humanity.)

And he said, “Its not the world, its not the technology, its not any of that. Its your family.”

And I said, “What?”

And he said, “Your family makes you think you can’t do it, you can’t handle whatever’s in front of you, you can’t change it. Whatever you grew up with, made you feel you’re not enough for the thing in front of you. I don’t know what they did to you, but whatever it was, it isn’t true.

You don’t even see the technology, you don’t even see the situation. You see your judgement of the situation. You decided its bigger than you, and more than you can handle, because that’s how they made you feel when you were young. So that’s what you see. LIttle kids are doing things on computers. You know you can do it. But you’ve decided technology is bigger than you are, and that’s why you feel overwhelmed.”

I stood there, reeling. He went on to say people give him mean looks sometimes, which was happening as we spoke. I saw someone looking judgmentally at him, and at me for talking to him. He said some people call him ni**er. Then he stared at me and said, “You afraid of black people?” I laughed, and so did he. And he said, “See there? Some people are afraid of me, because that’s a fear their family put into them. What you’ve got is the same thing. Its a judgment, but instead of it being about black people, its about technology, and when you’ve got a judgment of technology, you don’t see the technology, anymore than they see me when they call me a name like that. Do you understand me?”

And I said, “Yeah, I do. I’m Jessi,”

And he said, “I’m Samuel.”

And I said, “I’ve got to go into the drugstore. But if they’ll let me take cash back, I’d like to repay you.”

I was in the drugstore for a very long while. The store was just not organized. When I came out, Samuel lit up. He said, “Oh! I thought you were putting me on.” And I said, “No, its hard to find anything in there.”

He said, “I thought you were the real thing, then I didn’t, and now I’m glad you are.”

So we talked some more, and the more he talked, the better I felt, and the less scared I was about my new life. He had such a calm about him. At a point I just wanted to hug him, but I didn’t want to be weird.

And then a bit later he said, I want to ask something of you, but I don’t know if I should. And I got a little creeped out, although in over an hour of conversation with Samuel, he did not appear anything less than sane and wise, but I suddenly felt apprehensive. And he said, “Can I get a —-?” And I said, “A what?”

And he got shy, and he said, “A —-?”

And I said, “A WHAT?”

And he said, “Oh, never mind!”

And I said, “No, I want to know. Can you get a WHAT?”

And he looked at his feet, and he said, “Can I get a . . . (very long pause) . . .can I get a hug?”

And I said, “I’ve been wanting to hug you since you took my fear away.” And we hugged, and it was nice, and laughed at the looks that seemed to get.

He told me that we’ve lost touch with our instincts because of our thinking. He said he doesn’t read books, and doesn’t listen to words so much. He said, “I pay attention to life. Not what the humans are calling life, but LIFE. And Life is Spiritual. Not the cars, not the busy people, but LIFE. And he said when he pays attention to it, he sees things. He said he saw openness in me.

The truth was, I I was feeling overwhelmed. But when I saw him, I did open up, and I don’t know why.

He’s a talker. I had to be strong with him and pull myself away both times I left him, but I felt he needed someone to listen to him, and I felt I needed his words, and I felt better after time with him.

The most amazing part of it was, he looked at me towards the end of our talk, and knowing nothing but what I’d told him, he asked, “Do you play guitar?” And I said yes, and he looked up at the sky and back at me, and said with a twinkle in his eye, he said, “Somebody’s telling me things about you.” Then he said, “Do you think you could put music to my words?”

And I said, “Probably.”

And he got shy again, but  he pulled it together and said, I want to give you something.

He started reciting poetry, one poem, several minutes long.

It was very moving. I broke out in chills from tip to toe which typically tells me something important is happening, and had a few tears. It was about his life, and all he’d faced, and it was all rhymes, and it was like hip hop, but this man was at least in his 60′s and his style had so much more maturity and wisdom than I equate with the predominant genre; and the poetry went through the dark times, and the dark deeds, and then how he began to find Truth and turned his life around, and began to see things as they are, observing Life and humanity’s way in it, and at a point in this, he pulled up his shirt, and revealed a thick knife scar that had cut most of his stomach open, as he spoke of having seen the darkness before the light. Then he put his shirt down and kept going with this rhyme and his message.

When he was done he looked in my eyes and said, “That reached you.” And I said, “Yeah,” and he said, “You’re open. Stay open.”

I felt great the whole day after that.