Thursday, March 18, 2010

The New Normal

If you’ve never seen the TV show The Ghost Whisperer, I hope you’ll watch at least two episodes. I saw a scene in which “the ghost whisperer” (Jennifer Love Hewitt) tearfully explains to her new (and old) love interest that she sees ghosts, has since she was a little girl. She is concerned about how her friend will accept this, whether it will “send him away.” This, after he has mocked news of a house being haunted and a “ghost-hunter” showing up to track the energy emissions. Being a cynic and I-know-it-all for years, I would have scoffed at this too. The list of creators and contributors can read like the best-seller list of experts in “crossing over.” It is no coincidence that people are more and more interested in understanding the “paranormal,” even as more and more of us are sick and dying from our sickness. Sounds trite maybe, but the greater point, to me, is fantastic, amusing, and profound. The plot of the GW episode unravels the communication between these two people in simple ways, their experiences opening each next move with their choices along the way: the choice to open our minds to what is “unseen” as real, or to reject love simply because of a belief. We must honor the courage each of us has to live the truth within us if we want to be spiritual people, and as we honor ourselves in truth, we honor each other and all who have gone before in the most respectful and loving way. Question what we have accepted as “normal” and why!

One reason I am so glad I finished my book while my parents were alive and could read it, is that this was in one way my “love letter” to them. The book was one way for me to express my exploration of the heritage I was becoming conscious of as an energy being, given life by them. My parents believed in people THINKING and knowing the conviction of their beliefs and behaviors. Not thinking is lazy, and lazy is an excuse and a waste of gifts,of being alive. My beliefs and experiences challenged some beliefs my parents lived and taught, because they challenged mine. Some things I wrote challenged beliefs of friends and family too. Some have written or talked with me about my book, a few enthusiastically. I am very conscious of the benefit of the encouragement to think, and the foundation of life our parents taught us. As a mind, we must begin somewhere and some time, to recognize apathy, to think more deeply about where we came from, to enjoy creating, to smell the coffee and feel the wind in our sails! Without understanding that we are energy beings, living infinite lives, I had trouble figuring out faith, trust, or even truth in a way that made sense to me. I’ve had to understand God as Spirit energy – we are energy first, and matter second. The physical concepts/beliefs began to  diminish as my mind became more open, the beliefs less “substantial,” then began to glow, to illuminate more as an energy field glowing with these ethical values that make us who we are as a spiritual design. My book, now, is a fading image of “me” as I know myself, because I continue to live and learn. I believe in “ghosts” (energy is real!). I believe in the absolute beauty of eternal life, creating us in physical matter to live, love, learn, and expand our spirit consciousness – sail and enjoy the breeze, the play of light on water, the spectrum of light and dark below and above the water and sky. I now believe in love and its infinite patience which guides us, as we listen and hear. I’m conscious of the transitions I’m living as I test this “new normal” every moment. Love, or fear? (Have you seen the National Car Insurance ads with John McEnroe? Choose any car! Yes! It's true...You choose...) Change is not always easy, but I now know it is infinitely rewarding.

I look every morning at the African violets by my bed. They were a gift from this friend and mentor who knew my Mother loved violets and had them on the window sill in their home for many years. They continue to bloom in their cycles, with vibrant color, reaching for the sunlight. I smile every time I look at them. They are wonderful reminders to me of the power of love and the beauty of color. Just think.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

"The illusion of death does not change what is"

You grieve for the loss you feel, not for the individual, because internally you understand that when death becomes the choice of the soul and spirit, it becomes an opportunity for that soul and spirit to begin again, to start a new and fresh existence. But your focus as human beings rests upon you and your feelings about the experience. Your feelings that are there to help trigger this unity of soul and spirit.” Loss, Death and Grief, K Oddenino

Recently I sent an acquaintance a message acknowledging the death of his mother, and the sudden loss. He posted a beautiful message about his sense of loss, including his lingering at the windows in his home deep into the silent night, watching the snow fall. For the first time he felt the big soft snow flakes as tears falling from the sky. He described the apathy he felt after his Dad died, and the wind going out of his sails. He lost the passion for doing even the things he loved; his actions were robotic. Then the gentle breeze picked up, and he regained his love of life. He trusts, because he knows, this will happen again in its own time. Because your parents’ deaths came so close together, you’re probably still bobbing gently, he wrote. The breeze will come for you, too. What a wonderful message. Communication is one of the ethical values, and always a gift.

“Bobbing gently” is a good description of how I have felt sometimes since my parents died. I understand how apathy makes what were “normal” activities rote and less interesting. I’ve realized with a fresh mind that this “new normal” is the opening expression of love beyond what we have known before. What makes life interesting begins with the energy of the breeze, the spirit that inspires us into life and supports us in leaving life to begin again. I remember this. The “new normal” is a fresh sense of life, a new attitude about consciously expanding myself as spirit energy, adventure beyond what we had grown accustomed to. This is why we create change, and why change is absolute for us.

Yesterday Kathy and I were talking at work. She commented about a mutual long-time acquaintance, saying that over all of the time she has known this person, never have they talked about how this person really feels, who she is. This is a sad statement to me, too, and I remember old friends knocking on my mind and heart’s door sometimes for years with great patience! (John Prine’s famous song, Angel from Montgomery, says it so well!….How the hell can a person go to work in the morning And come home in the evening and have nothing to say.) I realize what a wonderful education and gift it is to open a mind and heart to express itself, whether the sad beauty of snowflakes as tears as we think of our “lost” mothers, or the delight of throwing snowballs just where we want them in the thrill of cold air and laughing children (big or small). When I am impatient (angry) I think of the infinite patience of mothers (our spirit symbol), and I am grateful for such love. Thank you for all of the stories told through time! Let’s keep sharing our memories of what it means to be human. This is one of our best antidotes to disease and war.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

I have the nerve

I have the nerve to walk my own way, however hard, in my search for reality, rather than climb upon the rattling wagon of wishful illusions."
     - Letter from Zora Neale Hurston to Countee Cullen

Recently I watched a PBS program on American Masters about Zora Neale Hurston called  "Jump at the Sun." The program first aired in 2008. I’m so glad I saw it. I’ve long been interested in Hurston’s personality and passionate life. I’ve read some of her books. I was drawn by her unique personality, the way she captured certain ways and times and people and their expressions in a way no one else could. Passionate, raw and bold, and still a Lady, she was brave and talented and also fierce in some ways.  She was well-loved by many, and adamant about capturing and preserving the life of her community on paper and film – the life as she saw and lived it.  One event in her literary life really got my attention. She and Langston Hughes were good friends. He traveled with her in Florida, documenting the ways of the community, learning along with her. They wrote a play together. Before the play was produced, as the story in the program was told, Zora disappeared for 3 years, and she removed his name from the manuscript and produced it under her own name. The two never spoke again. I think about this story and how sad it can be when close friendships are shattered. Also, how important it is when they are, for each party, and for others influenced by them. These two literary personalities influenced many, and the reason we hear about it now is because of their cultural presence and influence. If Zora was so adamant about copyright, about getting her own voice heard in its “truth,” then why would she have treated Langston Hughes this way? How would she treat an “enemy”?
Brave, talented, funny, fierce – and human.  Friendships in my life have come and gone as I have grown, moved, changed, and as my friends have moved on, changed, grown. Facebook has recently provided a new window into the worlds of many friends whom I haven’t spoken to since early school days (lifetimes ago!).  Contact revives memories. What creates the bonds of relationships?  One friend wrote me a letter once, a hard one to write, which taught me much about myself, and helped me appreciate my friend in infinite ways. We are not active friends now, except in the bonds which formed at another time and space. Her gifts to me live on. As I have studied Spiritual Philosophy and the Ethical Values of our human design, I have begun to realize the absolute nature of love as the energy of creation. I have come to think about loyalty beyond what I knew before. I fit full-blown the Taurus personality, as astrological signs describe – and I have always thought of myself as a very loyal person. Loyal to friends, loyal to family, loyal to…? I realize now that for much of my life I was loyal to beliefs more than truth, to beliefs more than unconditional love, which supports and inspires change and the graceful kindness which embodies loving change.  To begin to know my own mind – gaining the wisdom to know the absolute mind guided by love and the other Ethical Values which are our human spiritual design – feels very different than the sometimes chaos and confusion of “trying to be true.” It is not enough to “speak my mind” – how I act and how I am reflects the energy of who I am as a human being in this time and space. My relationship with my own energy has grown up!

If you've never read Dust Tracks on a Road, Hurston's Autobiography, pick it up sometime, flip to any page and you will find a sentence that makes you laugh out loud! I'm so glad that her books began to circulate again! "Out of print" is a sad declaration for such gifts.