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IT HAPPENS TO THOSE WHO LIVE ALONE  </p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>It happens to those<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
who live alone<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
that they feel sure<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
of visitors<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
when no one else<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
is there.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>Until the one day<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
and the one particular<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
hour<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
working in the<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
quiet garden,</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>when they realize<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
at once<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
that all along<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
they have been<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
an invitation<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
to everything<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
and every kind of trouble</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>and that life<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
happens by<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
to those who<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
inhabit<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
silence</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>like the bees<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
visiting<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
the tall mallow<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
on their legs of gold,<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
or the wasps<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
going from door to door<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
in the tall forest<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
of the daisies.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>I have my freedom<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
today<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
because nothing<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
really happened</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>and nobody came<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
to see me,<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
only the slow<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
growing of the garden<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
in the summer heat</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>and the silence of that<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
unborn life<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
making itself<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
known at my desk,</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>my hands<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
still<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
dark<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
with the crumbling<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
soil<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
as I write<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
and watch</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>the first lines<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
of a new poem<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
like flowers<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
of scarlet fire<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
coming to fullness<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
in a clear light.</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>‘It Happens to Those Who Live Alone’<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
From 'The House of Belonging'<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
© David Whyte and Many Rivers Press</p><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
<p>PHOTO © David Whyte 2011: Garden Through Window; Arncliffe Yorkshire.
David Whyte‘s Facebook PAGE

IT HAPPENS TO THOSE WHO LIVE ALONE

It happens to those
who live alone
that they feel sure
of visitors
when no one else
is there.

Until the one day
and the one particular
hour
working in the
quiet garden,

when they realize
at once
that all along
they have been
an invitation
to everything
and every kind of trouble

and that life
happens by
to those who
inhabit
silence

like the bees
visiting
the tall mallow
on their legs of gold,
or the wasps
going from door to door
in the tall forest
of the daisies.

I have my freedom
today
because nothing
really happened

and nobody came
to see me,
only the slow
growing of the garden
in the summer heat

and the silence of that
unborn life
making itself
known at my desk,

my hands
still
dark
with the crumbling
soil
as I write
and watch

the first lines
of a new poem
like flowers
of scarlet fire
coming to fullness
in a clear light.

‘It Happens to Those Who Live Alone’
From ‘The House of Belonging’
© David Whyte and Many Rivers Press

© David Whyte 2011: Garden Through Window; Arncliffe Yorkshire.

And here is one response to his posting of the poem:

You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen.

Do not even listen, simply wait. Do not even wait, be quite still and solitary.

The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will

roll in ecstasy at your feet. — Kafka

10 Ways to Bypass the Real. ~ Jeff Brown

Via Jeff Brownon Mar 20, 2014

The Woods

In 1984, psychologist and author John Welwood coined the term “spiritual bypass.”

In Soulshaping, I defined the spiritual bypass “as the tendency to jump to spirit prematurely, usually in an effort to avoid various aspects of earthly reality.” This way of being was very familiar to me, as I have often displayed a tendency to bypass uncomfortable truths by jumping to divinity.

On a pogo-stick to the stars, I enjoyed the opportunity to pseudo-transcend the dualities before inevitably crashing back to earth to deal with my unfinished business.

In Soulshaping, I also acknowledged the need for bypass techniques in a still difficult world:

“In a world of pain, the spiritual bypass is an ongoing temptation. It gives us something to believe in and a vision of what we are missing in our localized reality. Without it, many of us would have to suffer unbearable situations. At the same time, it can be a detour on the path to genuine spirituality. In our efforts to leapfrog to something better, we often avoid something crucial. Spirit becomes the crutch rather than the expression of a natural unfolding.”

Subsequently, Robert Augustus Masters dedicated an entire book to this important topic—”Spiritual Bypassing- When Spirituality Disconnects Us from What Really Matters.”

As the term grows in popularity, I have noticed that it has taken on a very broad application, not uncommon with terms of art that morph into labels. In an effort to avoid its over-generalized and unattuned usage, I want to make a distinction between different forms of bypassing and shadow jumping, for they surely come in many forms.

The following list arose through observations of my own patterns and is intended as a self-assessment tool, one that can be used to support your own efforts to recognize and transform your methods of self-distraction.Some can be understood as branches of the spiritual bypass tree, while others have a meaningfully different quality.

This is, of course, not an exhaustive list, as there are as many ways to avoid reality as there are humans, but I am particularly interested in some of the ways that self-avoidance paths mask as enlightenment in the spiritual community in particular:

1.   The positivity bypass (aka the bliss bypass)—The tendency to feign positivity/bliss in an effort to sidestep or rise above the unhealed shadow. Often associated with the ungrounded “It’s all Good” mantra.

2.  The cerebral bypass—The tendency to seek refuge in the mind, to live in and through thoughts alone, to over-intellectualize the moment. Head-tripping in an effort to detach from the world of feeling. Often manifest as a profound capacity to articulate consciousness models and inquiries with little capacity to hearticulate and embody felt experience.

3.   The witness bypass—The tendency to live in witness-observer consciousness, to stare at our unresolved pain body across the room and imagine ourselves present, to confuse helpful detachment practices with life itself. Meanwhile, our unresolved pain is congealing into weapons that turn inward against the self. Often manifest as a kind of glossy eyed pseudo-equanimity with reduced affect.

4.   The pragmatism bypass—That is, remaining perpetually focused on practical reality in an effort to avoid an experience of unity, the bigger picture. Often manifest in great success in the material world, but a spiritually bankrupt life.

5.   The All-One bypass—That is, remaining perpetually focused on unity consciousness in an effort to avoid our particular issues, challenges and practical needs. Often manifest as an ungrounded inability to meet grounded, basic needs while floating off into the great mystery.

6.   The Non-Duality bypass—The tendency to self-identify as a non-dualist in an effort to transcend the human fray. Non-dual bypassers tend to conveniently remove everything that makes them uncomfortable from their unified framework- personal identifications, the unhealed emotional body, the entire ego, the self, the body- in an effort to transcend their humanness. Of course, there is nothing non-dual about it. Our humanness is the grist for the soul-mill. Without it, we can’t grow toward an authentic, sustainable experience of non-separateness.

7.  The Accountability Bypass– The tendency to use ‘mirror/reflection’ and ‘no judgment’ techniques in an effort to sidestep our own responsibility or the responsibility of others for wrong action. Lodged in the ungrounded notion that there is no wrongdoing, the effect of these practices is to condone and perpetuate unhealthy behaviors and to discourage victims from their rightful and necessary healing process.

8.   The You are not your story Bypass—The tendency to flee painful and confusing elements of our life experiences by disparaging story. Yes, we are often so much more than our stories, but let’ not throw the whole story out with the bath water. We also are our stories. At the heart of our story are the personal identifications, emotional material and unresolved issues that are the grist for the soul mill for our spiritual expansion. Without karmic clay to work through and with, our expansion is stalled.

9.   The Karmic Contract Bypass—The tendency to attribute every single event on the planet to universal or soulular intentionality—that is, “you must have chosen it,” it was destined, it reflects your vibration, “everything happens for a reason”—in an effort to flee the painful, mysterious and misguided nature of many events and experiences. Those who participate in this bypass technique have a tendency to shame and shun their own experience, and to do the same to others where compassion and healing are required.

And my own, as yet unworked through tendency…

10.  The Forgiveness Bypass—The tendency to avoid unresolved emotions and relational experiences by feigning forgiveness. Premature forgiveness. Often manifest in a tendency to shame those who haven’t forgiven, as though forgiving a wrongdoer is more important than healing itself. Real forgiveness requires a genuine working through of the emotions and memories related to our experiences. And, at the end of that process, it is the victim’s choice as to whether they choose to forgive.

Jeff Brown, former criminal lawyer and psychotherapist, Jeff Brown is the author of the best-selling book Soulshaping: A Journey of Self-Creation, and a popular book of spiritual graffiti- Ascending with Both Feet on the Ground. Endorsed by Oprah’s Soul Series radio host Elizabeth Lesser, authors Oriah Mountain Dreamer and Katherine Woodward Thomas, Ascending is a collection of some of Jeff’s most popular spiritual graffiti quotes, soul-bytes and aphorisms frequently shared in social media. He has been interviewed by CNN radio, appeared on Fox News.com, and written popular inspirations for ABC S Good Morning America. He is also the author of the viral blog Apologies to the Divine Feminine (from a warrior in transition) and the producer and key journeyer in the award winning spiritual documentary – Karmageddon- which also stars Ram Dass, Seane Corn, Wah! David Life, Deva Premal and Miten. His newest book- Love It Forward- is now published. Endorsed by best-selling authors Andrew Harvey and Caroline Myss, Love It Forward is another book of Jeff’s most impactful quotes and writings, with a strong emphasis on love and relationship quotes. You can check out his work at Soulshaping.

another world

 

Self-Made Twelve Steps to Authenticity Program

Step #1 –  Do You.

Have no apologies for who you are. If you fit in, great. Perhaps you found your tribe. If you don’t fit in, don’t beat yourself up about it. If you feel like the people around you aren’t speaking your language, perhaps it’s time to seek out a new flock of friends.   Wearing unnecessary a masks to fit in or avoid facing your reality is very imprisoning and can lead to hopelessness.  It’s easy to feel lonely in a crowd when we aren’t being ourselves.  Being who you are doesn’t mean you have to be selfish, it just means you make yourself known and encourage similar openness and sharing with others.  You may be an introvert or extrovert or somewhere in between:  what is important is that you do what makes you feel most comfortable.

Step #2 – Let Wildness In.

Stepping into the wilderness does wonders to the vibrational energy of our bodies and our nervous systems. There’s a subtle reassurance that everything you need to know, you already know and everything you don’t know may eventually be revealed in time without struggle and without desperation.

The wilderness strips us of competition and comparison and invites us into a state of peaceful awe. It also offers a reflection of our individual relationship with life versus being just a mere part of the human race. Who are you without people? You may just find this answer in the wild. It’s powerful medicine.

“When you get the blanket thing you can relax because everything you could ever want or be you already have and are.” – Bernard Jaffe, I Heart Huckabees

Step #3 – Hear the Voices.

Open up to your life’s purpose and your heart’s deepest desires by listening to the voices inside of you. There’s a lot of dialogue going on — some incessant, some nonsensical — but if we learn to listen more sincerely, we’ll discover that a deeper, all-knowing conversation is happening. It takes practice to hear this guidance as it takes practice to hear your heart’s desire, to trust your gut and to listen to your intuition.

Pay attention to the whisper and the serendipitous moments that remind you of what’s important to you. Keep listening and keep following the signs. You have the ability to live a life that’s true to who you are and a life that you really want.

Listen like your life depends on it.

“Creativity comes from trust. Trust your instincts.” — Rita Mae Brown

Step #4 – Take the damn risk already.

Make choices that put yourself first — above everything and everyone else, even those you love and cherish the most. If you don’t take care of yourself, if you don’t do what is best for you, your relationships will eventually suffer. Trust in the fact that doing what is best for you is best for everyone even if it doesn’t feel like it at first. Sometimes sacrifices have to made. People will get hurt and there will be losses, but the rewards gained from following your heart are absolutely everything in comparison.

Do something difficult for no other reason than that you like to do it.

Step #5 – Believe.

The secret formula: Believe in yourself and people will believe in you. Don’t give up due to predefined perceptions and limitations of yourself. Don’t give up because of the perceived effort. Millions of people give up before they even get started. They fail to realize their potential and give up as soon as they reach the first hurdle. Why? They don’t believe in themselves.

If you don’t believe in yourself you will end up throwing away your creativity and ideas. On the other hand, if you believe in yourself, you will no matter the outcome, find success even in what you perceive as the greatest of losses.

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” — Anais Nin

Step #6 – Use your body and love who and what you are.

It’s never been about the symmetry of your face or your body. It’s about the light that shines from within.

Have you ever witnessed a person that has been in a tragic, body deforming accident who has come out stronger, more compassionate and yes, even more beautiful? Their light shines so bright that after just a few minutes, you don’t see their asymmetry anymore, you simply feel and connect with their light.

If you see yourself as mere looks, if you believe your worth is merely skin deep, others will see you and judge you the same.  Aren’t you more than that? Remember, no matter what you do, your looks will eventually fade. What will remain is the fire that burns within. Stop smothering it with delusional judgments and superficial shape chasing. Stop holding yourself back from life because you don’t believe you look good enough.

Self-love exercise: go look in the mirror and tell yourself: You never ever were more beautiful than you are right now. Believe it.

Use your body in every way that you know how. Allow the intelligence of your vessel to reveal and share with you the secrets of the Universe — the secrets of You.

Step #7 – Defy your genetics.

Evolve from the base point you’ve been born into. Don’t allow the limitations of your parents or their parents deter you from your path. See it all as potential to evolve your bloodline, your genetic makeup, your life to a place where neither you, nor your ancestors, have ever gone before. YOU hold the torch.

If you are the black sheep of the family, be grateful. The path can be lonely, but know that you broke free. Celebrate this freedom.

You are the architect of your existence.

Step #8 – Integrate into wholeness.

Accept all parts of your life. All parts. This is one of the deepest healing elixirs you can ever offer yourself. Allow it all to integrate — your mind with body, your body with spirit and your entire being with all of the experiences of your life. Accept your irrevocable wholeness. When you accept what has been, what you thought was and what is, you loosen your grip on delusions, limitations and stale beliefs that hold you back. What’s left? Space. Space and room to expand into the shape you are naturally, wholly and fully with a deeper sense of truth, wisdom and compassion.

Step #9 – Paint a spectrum of love for all.

Serve and be accepting of others — of what they want to create, what they want to be and what they envision. Remind them to do everything it takes not to fail. Remind them that the bad that comes along with the good is the journey and the most beautiful, most fulfilling experience anyone could ever have. Offer and support a new way of living, thinking, creating, even working — listen and be open to the ways of others.

Have conversations that make you smile and ponder. Offer solutions that bring us closer together versus farther apart.

Step #10 – Take the time to do nothing.

Clear the slate. Erase the chalkboard. Wash it all clean. Don’t do anything. Just let everything be as it is. No matter how it is, no matter what your mind is screaming or what confusion you have in your life, for a few moments or as long as you can each day, let it be. Doing nothing and sitting still, helps us recognize all the ways in which we don’t let go. Explore the profound, beautiful simplicity and subtlety of doing nothing… and all the challenges it endures.

In the most simple instruction from Andrew Cohen: take a seat, be still and don’t do anything.

In the words of The Beatles: Let it be.

Photo: tumblr.com.

Photo: tumblr.com/photographer unknown.

Step #11 – Seek connection versus perfection.

Living an authentic life stems from your ability to be self-aware and genuine in the ways in which you express, react, dance, share, create, listen, etc. — in other words, how you connect with yourself and the world around you. Authenticity also heightens from your ability to be aware of when you are being and/or reacting inauthentically.

Being authentic develops a connection with who you truly are, your real essence, and liberates you from the superficial pressures and expectations of always trying to be perfect.

Step #12 – Recognize that you already have everything you need to be you.

Clear away the small minded and limiting ideas of who you are that keep you bound and feeling small, hopeless, even unworthy. You already have everything — everything you need to be you. In the present moment, you have very clear goals. There is much to be done as you are right now.

Discover the clearing, discover the openness and the deepest part of your own Universe. Tap into your unlimited energy and passion to follow-through.

**

Living a life of authenticity is a path of personal evolution – and as with any journey, it’s up to you.

220px-BeltWoods2

 

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Joan of Arc

I know this now. Every man gives his life for what he believes. Every woman gives her life for what she believes. Sometimes people believe in little or nothing yet they give their lives to that little or nothing. One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. And then it is gone. But to sacrifice what you are and live without belief, that's more terrible than dying.--

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Beannacht

On the day when
the weight deadens
on your shoulders
and you stumble,
may the clay dance
to balance you.

And when your eyes
freeze behind
the grey window
and the ghost of loss
gets in to you,
may a flock of colours,
indigo, red, green,
and azure blue
come to awaken in you
a meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
in the currach of thought
and a stain of ocean
blackens beneath you,
may there come across the waters
a path of yellow moonlight
to bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
may the clarity of light be yours,
may the fluency of the ocean be yours,
may the protection of the ancestors be yours.
And so may a slow
wind work these words
of love around you,
an invisible cloak
to mind your life.

John O'Donohue, Echoes of Memory