Some Awareness This Way Comes

I have developed some issues with my cervical spine so writing and posting are physically as well as cognitively difficult. Like all change, it will not stay but offer alternatives not imagined. Such is the energy in change.

I am reminded of “life is the art of drawing without an eraser” (John W. Gardner). Every moment offers itself to us for the experience that it is without any erasures. Ours is to continue to draw on each moment.

I am grateful for this day

and for every moment I experience

in this physical dimension

as a human being.

May I meet each moment with equanimity,

compassion, loving-kindness, and joy

for all things, in all ways.

These are my lines that outline each day for me, a selection from what others have revealed to me in their writing and in the way they live their lives. I am grateful for these lines that frame my life, a daily awareness that my way comes.

I plan to resume regular posts by September 14th.  As I am able, I will respond to comments. I know I am behind. Yet, do know your thoughtful comments are not only read–always–but carefully considered and quite often are reflected in my posts. Thanks for that.

Oh, and apologies to Ray Bradbury–Something Wicked This Way Comes—the novel and title seemed rather appropriate. As a matter of fact, I just finished listening to it, again, and yes, more awareness my way came.



Bite-by-Bite, a Mindful Remembrance


Each August, I remember the day—some four years ago, now–that my gnawing hunger and craving for connection closed the door on the way I lived.

Always, my memory of that pre-dawn, August 12th morning feels crystalline yet memory is the mind’s filter, a selective and often soft light on pain past. Still, the remembrance is sharp enough.

Then, my heart was as empty as my stomach. In all ways, I was perfectly hollow, mindless in my approach to decades of autoimmune disease and related health issues.

I had reached the point where no food satisfied my hunger and almost any food would trigger digestive issues. Thinking 0714My weight just continued to climb no matter what I ate or did not eat. Inflammation was systemic.

My doctors—I had a whole group by this time—increased the variety and type of medication for my stomach and thyroid as well as musculoskeletal pain, more tests for my kidneys, and always more blood work as if to make sure both lupus and Sjogren’s remained rampant.

Mindlessly, I lived, not present for any of it. Rather, I looked to the days when remission would return—as it always had for the thirty years previous—then, I would return to life as I knew it.

There was no remission but there was no organ failure, either. What did happen was a dramatic decrease in my systemic inflammation, my digestive issues are no more, and I have maintained a 68 pound weight loss for 30 of the last 48 months with only gentle yoga for exercise. Musculoskeletal issues, in particular mobility, remain a challenge.

Mine is a life few, if any, would want but it is mine—and I am mindful of it—something I never was in the way I once lived.

Mindfulness is deliberately paying attention, being fully aware of what is happening both inside yourself—in your body, heart, and mind—and outside yourself, in your environment. Mindfulness is awareness without judgment or criticism.

(Mindful Eating, Jan Chozen Bays, M.D., p. 2)

It was the hunger in my stomach that brought me to mindfulness. I had to learn what food my body needed, for each body is unique in its nutritional needs. No two are the same. I had to sort through the food that would satisfy my hunger and ultimately, open my heart.

Eating mindfully is a bite-by-bite experience. Not all foods are equal in nutrients but being mindful of each bite keeps my focus on whether or not the food is satisfying my hunger. I have found I am much more selective in what and how I eat. Why would I eat food that leaves me not only hungry but craving more?

A Gander 0514Am I eliminating my disease process? No, but I am assisting my body by eating nutrient-dense food rather than adding to its burden with empty calories. And yes, it has taken most of these last four years not only to realize the difference between the two but to find food I love to eat.

Grains, even gluten-free, are not something my body processes efficiently but infrequently, I partake. The same is true for any starch or yeast. Sugar brings on “brain fog” and increases my musculoskeletal pain. Dairy and soy I just avoid.

My being present in eating opened me to my life as it actually is, filled with infinite possibilities unique to me. Mindfulness helps me discover them and experience life in ways I never imagined. Every day is fresh, its own possibility.

In creating a physical, compassionate connection with my body, I opened my heart to life as it comes–I connected–this August 12th, I paused to remember. Thanks, regular readers, for walking with me down this memory lane yet another time.

When to Carry and When to Let Go

My previous post considered the constant connection we have with our world, one more immediate than ever before. There is a continuous buzz of busyness. It can overwhelm one to stillness, this blogger included, so I took a week off from publishing a post.

A break in routine is an opportunity to create a change in the way we live unless the break is just another form of busyness—same behavior just different surroundings or situations.

Taking a look 0714

A true break means we attend to basic requirements only and not carry the world with us so we may meet the mundane as if for the first time, eyes fresh and bright. It requires us to drop what we carry so that we hold only the moment we have.

There is a well-known story of two monks who come to a river where they meet a woman who needs assistance in crossing.

Without a word, one monk picks up the woman and carries her across. She thanks the monk and leaves. The two monks continue on their way, one troubled and one not.

Finally, the troubled monk can stand it no longer and asks, “Why did you carry that woman across the river when you know we are prohibited any contact with women?”

The untroubled monk responds, “I only carried her across the river. You are still carrying her.”

If it is a break we intend, then it is much like residing in the gap between thoughts. In no thought there is no mind just pure consciousness. In a break from our routine, we no longer carry the busyness of everyday. We put it down and rest. When we return to our river of routine we cross, carrying our load again.

For me, this short break from blogging was different than previous ones. It started with a stop. Simultaneously, I dealt with a colorful but significantly sprained toe on my left foot and an aggravated inflammation of my right knee.

I note that the injury to my toe is probably related to increasing lupus inflammation issues but the injury occurred after my trip to the library in search of Zen novels (I found two). In fact, it was after I put down my library load that I stubbed/sprained/jammed my toe.

Resting and reading Zen provided me another perspective on balance both physically and emotionally. Perhaps my knee was more troublesome that particular day as in addition to wandering around the library, I had stocked up on groceries for the week.

My usual routine is either the library or the grocery store but not both yet organic, freshly ground almond butter was on sale, and I had new recipes to try, in particular Zoe’s cookies.  I would have to wait most of the week to make them but they were worth every step to get the ingredients. EmmaRose thought so, too. EmmaRose meets Zoe Cookies 0814

When not reading, I put down other emotional baggage that tends to clutter my routine, remembering that people really are doing the best they can and there are always options–this is true for me, as well. Sometimes, my routine blinds me to what others face so I do not see what they are carrying.

Now, I return to the river of my routine. I know the moment is all I ever have and that it is more than enough. After all, I only need to carry it to the next moment.

The Conquering of Self: All in a Day’s Outing


It is a spring day of which poets write and painters paint but my mind is all a jumble as thoughts tumble, each more urgent than the last. My body has joined the revolt, sending one pain message after another. This mind-body battle means it is a perfect day to take myself off to Waverly.

It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles.
~ Buddha ~

No matter how many times I visit Waverly, it whispers to me, sometimes to remind and other times to reveal. Regardless, a breath here is less ragged with frustration. The mind-body battle is still present but now resides at the edge of my awareness as if the stillness of Waverly is all-pervasive.

Waverly offers something for each of my senses. With the focus of a juggler tossing each ball high enough so that the others remain in the air, I take in one view completely before leaving it for another. In a moment’s stance, the mind-body is absorbed otherwise.

Standing at the edge of the circle of live oaks whose branches intertwine into a year-round canopy of shade, Waverly as park and pond is mine to survey. I will not walk the park and pond today but I decide to try to make my way to the bench on the bridge that crosses the pond.

Stillness of Waverly 0514

My steps are deliberate, almost mindful, as my right knee wobbles. My focus shifts to the pain in my shin and then to my calf and back up my thigh into my hip. I take in what I have come to know as a “pain breath,” which gives me a way to communicate with it.

Sometimes, the pain will release but this is not one of those times. Again, I assume the juggler’s focus, tossing the pain as high and as far away as I can, knowing it will come round again but I have made it to the bridge.

Waverly has never seemed so vibrant. I have lost count of the times that thought has come to me as Waverly’s purity of color and panorama of life stun. This is a world not shy about life.

There is tightness in my lower back but this time it releases simultaneously with my noticing parent geese and their two, yellow-brown goslings in full down just at the edge of the other side of the bridge.

I will not disturb you is the only thought of which I am aware as I quietly open my camera. The sun is behind me so all I can do is aim and hope that the goose family is somewhere in one of the shots but regardless, my mind’s eye has this one.

Goose Family 0514

In my three years of visiting Waverly, these are the first goslings I have seen.  My entire mind-body watches with a focus that had seemed impossible moments earlier. This has been a spring of uncertainty.

The hawk and the geese 0514The red-shouldered hawk also decides to watch from atop the light post, perhaps to watch for a failure in focus, perhaps not. The parent geese are ever alert while the goslings are otherwise engaged yet in this moment, the world is theirs. They do not dawdle in their gusto of being alive.

As a human, I am easily snagged by the “what if” of drama but in the natural world, life is lived as it comes. Each moment is so precious, so all-consuming that it cannot possibly be anything but enough.

I rub my right leg in gratitude for each sensation it sends, as my mind opens to being rather than to battle. Such is possible with each breath, this being in life as it is. How it dazzles.

A Way I No Longer Am

Bloom is off 0414Let me begin with a question: what of the moment when the cocoon is no more? All is new, unknown for this form of life. It is a moment of dramatic tension as well as one of wonder. Life is crisp, clear, completely in focus; there is just so much of it to explore.

One life has ended and another begins.

I had never considered the falling away of the cocoon. In not doing so, I missed the ending of one way of life and thus, the beginning of the next. Life cycles and while a cocoon is only a stage, each stage must have its moment—from beginning to end–so that the next may emerge. No matter how many times the cycle repeats each stage is unique.

It is not easy to let go of a way of life, especially the nurturing stage of a cocoon. Yet, in order to experience life through another perspective, the cocoon must fall away for the new form to live.

Five years ago I retired, believing I would regain my health by modifying my life. From a Buddhist perspective, I stayed stuck in samsara (the cycle of suffering), trying to live a way I no longer am.

I did not know then what I know now. The cocoon has fallen away, and the way of life that is emerging is familiar but its form is unique. It is one of less movement and more being.

In Buddhism, one develops the practice of loving-kindness and compassion as well as joy and equanimity for all in all things. I like to think of these “four sublime states” developing in stages as my practice of them grows. Some days, there is no growth but always, there is practice.

In these last two months, my practice has undergone such a dramatic change that my life feels new. I am curious and excited about this new form of being and what I will discover.Not a cocoon but a bud 0414

No longer trying to live a way I no longer am, I open to life turning on a dime. In a moment, it will turn again. Never has impermanence seemed so full of possibility. Once again, chronic illness opens me to another perspective, another way to be. I am not lupus or any of the labels that I have accumulated over the decades for as the Buddha taught, there is “no fixed or unchanged self.”

However, there is a body and a mind that cycle through my lifetime. For over half of that life, my mind and body experience has included autoimmune disease. Now, in this new stage of life, my mind and body are adjusting to the consequences of living with decades of disease. There is a wearing away of the old as the new comes into being.

In order to discover all this new stage offers, I must be more mindful than I have ever been. That much is clear. More rest for the body, more tolerance for the thought chatter.

I am neither my body nor my mind but I am experiencing a lifetime through them. For me, the challenge is and has been to be. Perhaps it is for most, as change excludes no one and no thing.

Stage after stage, the cocoon falls away.

Sitting Within the Winds of Change

These last six months I allowed myself to swirl within the currents of change, believing I could harness these winds or at the very least touch them. Such suffering is the stuff of storms, the perfect one always a possibility the longer one remains in flux.

It is within the eye of the storm–stillness surrounded by gale force winds–where suffering ceases. Rarely, do we reach the calm by choice. Usually, some moment grabs us so fiercely we are forced to sit down and look at what is actually occurring.

My suffering stopped when I realized I could no longer walk as I always have. I was in an airport, two thousand miles from home, when I had to look at me as I really am.

Winds of Change 0214

To my mind, I have had a slight limp for a while—over a year, actually—it meant I walk more slowly but nothing more. Frankly, I no longer noticed my limp but it was significant enough that airport security “expedited” me in more than one airport. I took no notice.

It was on my flight home I realized I would not be able to walk the airport. Wheelchair assistance was a necessity. Twice I had to walk the short distance between plane and terminal to get to a wheelchair. Those steps were the most doubtful I have ever taken.

I am finally losing my mobility was my only thought as fourteen years of medical conversations regarding degenerative disease replayed in an infinite loop. As my mind plotted the possibilities, the perfect storm seemed upon me.

 Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished

(Lao Tzu)

I am still sitting within the eye of this storm, in pain, but no longer suffering. I suffered in immersing myself into one “what if” scenario after another, sinking into dramas that may never occur.

Not Yet Spring 0214

Pain is a guarantee that we are alive; it is a sensation sure and pure. To sit within its purity is to detach from its fury, to allow its torrents to rage and overflow without being swept up in suffering.

Leave your front door and back door open. Allow your thoughts to come and go. Just don’t serve them tea

(Shrunyu Suzuki)

We cannot avoid pain, we can only face it. If we do anything less, we suffer as we avoid reality in favor of living in fear fantasies.

I am able to walk, able to go to the grocery store and even to my beloved Waverly to sit and see rather than walk round park and pond. I am able to drive a standard shift car. I limp but I walk.

Nothing has changed and everything has changed. My world is smaller and larger for to sit within the heart of change is to watch within the calm as scenarios rage without ever knowing the light of reality.

It is when we ignore the moment at hand for what might come next that we are least aware and most stuck. We are trying to touch the wind when all we need to do is sit down within the storm’s calm and let it rage.

Recognizing What is Going On is a Mere Act of Being

Just the other day I realized I rarely recognize opportunity as it is unfolding.  Not rushing to label opportunity and put it in its box is a lifelong pattern and a beneficial one at that. It may be that not labeling any moment is what allows us to be most mindful and, thus, most present in our lives.

Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing.

~ Ajahn Chah~

The mere act of being invigorates us whether the energy we are feeling is familiar or seems a spark, strange and unknown. Regardless, the energy of each moment is unique, unattached, not ever having presented in quite the same way. All we have to do is let go of preconceived notions. That is the nature of being.

The meeting 112113

In the past few weeks I have had a lot of practice with just being. Although I have been more overwhelmed than not, I discovered an underlying energy I was sure I no longer had, a gift bright and shiny but an awakening as well as a remembering. Simultaneously, the energy I am experiencing is new and old so it is not surprising that I lurched a bit, trying to rely on past experience when all I had to do was just be and not be anything.

Regular readers of this blog know I have benefited from a diet of whole foods as well as a regular yoga and meditation practice. Regarding the diet, I am entering my fourth year of low sugar, low starch, lots of leafy, green vegetables and gluten-free grains; for the last year and a half, I have meditated at least six days a week and usually daily; I am approaching the six month mark of a regular yoga practice, which is all but daily.

I am now realizing a steady energy from this combination of diet, meditation, and yoga. However wonderful it is, there is even more. A professional opportunity is within my grasp, one I could not have imagined.

Amazingly, rather than greeting the opportunity mindfully—just being who I am–I relied on well-worn behaviors of the person I was. I fell into old patterns and not surprisingly, I started feeling physically and emotionally drained yet it was not a full lupus or Sjogren’s flare-up. Not at all.


It was as if I did not trust the person I am now. I knew I was being given more than a chance to contribute substantially to improving lives of animals; I was being given a chance to be a member of a professional team again.

Rather than being invigorated, I held opportunity at bay. I was so afraid of failing and at the same time I was so sure of succeeding. Then, I “recognized what was going on” as Pema Chödrön would say:

When we are distracted by a strong emotion, do we remember that it is part of our path? Can we feel the emotion and breathe it into our hearts for ourselves and everyone else?… And when we can’t practice when distracted but know that we can’t, we are still training well. Never underestimate the power of
compassionately recognizing what’s going on.
(Pema Chodron)

It is early days in adding this professional world to my online writing life but that I am able to venture into that world is one of the greatest opportunities of my later life.  And yes, autumn—my favorite season—overflows with gratitude for this unknown, emerging life. Such is the mere act of being.

The Laying Away of the Dark

Such a morning this has been, beginning in the promise of darkness, for rising before dawn is to witness the laying away of the dark for the light.

I sit meditation, as I do every morning; I have come to rely on this hour of silence. This morning is not a sitting of insight but of “monkey mind,” one thought tumbling on top of another. It is a busy stillness. When the timer goes off, I mutter something to the effect of “that was difficult—again.”

Yet, something nags so I sit a moment in review. Ah, yoga dropped in near the end of my sitting, specifically my Peggy Cappy Easy Yoga for Arthritis DVD. I have owned it for three years; so far, it has been mostly a good intention.
Waverly Preening 0813

The yoga DVD dropped in during a moment of open awareness meditation, meaning my focus was on neither emotion nor sensation but on pause, a true gap between thoughts, before the emotion returned.

For some time now I have been sitting with the feeling of bittersweet, for the sensations of loss and gratitude swirl just beyond me. In this particular morning, I am in search of its energy but eddies of distraction, proven pools of fear, bring me to the surface of my breath, entangled in old story lines.

Once again, I do not reach the pure energy at the core of bittersweet.  It has been like this for a while, this sitting or almost sitting with bittersweet. In open awareness, I sense the light of the day, and in drops the thought of the yoga DVD.

It is not a surprise for one of the effects of this last lupus flare is a significant reduction in my physical activity, in particular taking my beloved morning walk. It is still a possibility but it is not benefitting me, as it once did. My joints ache to stretch but not to pound the ground, no matter the distance. In fact, I have spent the last two days recovering from a stroll around Waverly Pond.

And just as the Waverly story line started up, my meditation timer went off. That is what I remember from my morning’s sitting.

She Who Must Not Be DisturbedThe day is now more light than dark but there is not yet a sunrise. Feline EmmaRose is sitting meditation in the bedroom doorway. She Who Must Not Be Disturbed knows I will remain in the bedroom until otherwise directed.

As I have rested for two days, there is no body rebellion this morning. The physical stillness of sitting meditation is always a physical boon, for in meditation the body is allowed to awaken gradually. The yoga DVD is next to the decade-old television set. There is nothing for it except to insert the disc.
Waverly Posing 0813

I am familiar with most of the yoga poses, and Peggy Cappy encourages individual adaptation, much like Pema Chodron suggests meditation position adaptation. Yet, foremost in my mind is to stop the yoga poses at the first sign of discomfort. The thought is reminiscent of my early days with meditation.

For the first time in three years, I participate in the entire yoga session. As with the first time I stayed sitting meditation, I do not note the length of time nor its passing.

As I look out my bedroom window, the sun is high in the sky, shimmering off the leaves of the willow. An aquamarine vine snakes its way along the lower limb of a Ponderosa pine, reaching for the willow.

I remember many mornings, distant now but not really that long ago, when morning meditation was hit and miss, anything but integral to beginning the day. Then, I was determined to make each day fit my plan, and each day began with a morning walk. I smile.

A familiar feeling of surrender washes over me, embraced with total acceptance. The darkness of loss gives way to gratitude for mornings such as these.


Flare or Fog, It Matters Not

“Don’t pursue your passion. Be it” was Anita Moorjani’s response to a Hay House interviewer’s request for one bit of advice for everyone. The interview was months ago but the words stayed with me, like distant notes of a tune I almost recognized.

The words dropped in and out of my attention, showing up when I least suspected them. About ten days ago, the lupus flare I thought was on the wane gained new life, joined by the light of Sjogren’s syndrome.

It has been four years, maybe even five, since I have known the light of a Sjogren’s flare so it took me a while to recognize it. Sjogren’s attacks the body’s moisture glands–the exocrine system that produces tears and saliva—the primary symptoms are dry eyes, dry mouth, and fatigue. Even with the use of prescription medication, my salivary glands were destroyed years ago.

For me, Sjogren’s has always meant debilitating fatigue but in tandem with lupus, the brain fog and joint pain are in high evidence. I have to be careful not to give them too much credit because they will take it and more. They can seem insatiable.

Foliage Waverly 0713

For me, any kind of flare is a flash of light within a fog for the brighter the flare, the thicker the fog. I sense the energy of the flare but the fog is just as intense; for the past ten days, it has been flare and fog, quite fatiguing.

Still, Anita Moorjani’s words wandered in and out of my days for passion is the energy of this flaring duo. As the fog began to lift and the energy of the flare remained, the question emerged: what if I stop pursuing my passion? There is still sufficient fog but the question is clear enough to be considered.

I am not given to labeling passion, not in my later years anyway, but the gift of such flares is to be in life fully, letting one moment go for the next. Each moment presents its infinite possibilities, if we will allow it to reveal itself.

“To access the state of allowing, the only thing I had to do was be myself. I realize that all those years, all I ever had to do was be myself, without judgment or feeling that I was flawed” (Anita Moorjani, Dying to be Me).


Perhaps, being one’s passion is a mere matter of showing up for every moment mindfully, whether in fog or in flare matters not. It is a thought that enters my mind but I push it away in favor of sleep. It revisits me in my next morning’s meditation; I am tired and take a while before sitting meditation but I sit for my usual hour.

The morning is as it has been for over two weeks–overcast, humid, and rain seems imminent–but as my morning meditation ends, there is not yet rain and as often happens, I have more energy after meditation.

I decide to go in search of Lake Miccosukee, something that has crossed my mind from time to time but the moment never seemed to suit. The morning is still early, hazy with humidity, and I am a bit foggy myself so we are a perfect fit.

Driving down canopy roads of Live Oaks, crape myrtles bloom beneath the oak boughs as does the delicate mimosa. Many consider the mimosa a weed for it grows quickly anywhere, offering feathery blossoms in a fan like wave. I admire the mimosa’s tenacity to bloom, to return time and again, only to be chopped down. Nature is perpetually passionate.

Arriving at Lake Miccosukee, I have the boat dock all to myself for a moment, unbelievably good fortune and an omen for the rest of my day. Miccosukee is a prairie lake. Sometimes, it’s a prairie and other times it’s a lake, too, but always aquatic plants are abundant.

Prairie Lake 0713

I have grown used to lakes controlled by sinkholes, coming or going, either way works. In this moment, Lake Miccosukee is a floating prairie, and it occurs to me that here is yet another version of the island of vegetation from The Life of Pi. Imagine that.

I am already tired but it has been another marvelous hour. Would that all mornings were just like this one but if they were, this one would not be what it was, its own. I am learning the practice of being one’s passion, allowing the day to unfold, be it in flare or fog. It matters not.

“When coming out of sitting, don’t think that you’re coming out of meditation, but that you are only changing postures. If you reflect in this way, you will have peace. Wherever you are, you will have this attitude of practice with you constantly. You will have a steady awareness within yourself. The heart of the path is quite easy. There’s no need to explain anything at length. Let go of like and dislike and let things be. That’s all that I do in my own practice.

~Ajahn Chah~ 

Again, thanks for all of your warm wishes and kind words as I sit within the flare of this fog. My plan is to post weekly, whether it is a Sunday Something or a Thursday Tidbit but I am letting nature be my guide.

Sitting With the Wolf in Stillness

Every morning, I spend an hour in meditation followed by an hour that includes exercise, shower, and breakfast preparation. It is this mind-body connection that begins my day. While I will revisit physical exercise and food preparation, no day opens without meditation.

Empty yourself of everything. Let the mind become still. The ten thousand things rise and fall, while the Self watches their return. They grow and flourish and then Return to the Source. Returning to the Source is stillness, which is the Way of Nature.”
~ Lao Tsu ~
Tao Te Ching

During my recent lupus flare, it was meditation that allowed me to empty and renew myself for the rise and fall of the ten thousand things. It was meditation that allowed me to explore the energy underlying every form of discomfort, the internal investigation as Devaji refers to it.

Tadpoles Waverly 0613

When there is internal investigation as opposed to following the external movement,
it is possible to recognize that every form of
discomfort, every problem that is experienced, is happening inside of you.
If you do not have a problem inside, you do not have a problem. The mind will say that it is due to something out there, but where you experience the problem is inside

It is a familiar pattern of mine this looking to the outside for what may only be discovered on the inside. I have done it for almost all of my life but this past year of daily meditation has been a discovery of stillness, which is not to say the mind is ever quiet.

In meditation, which many teachers referred to as “taming of the mind,” there is no effort to reshape or redefine any of our thoughts. In meditation, we observe our thoughts, allowing them to bubble up and away from us without interference, without creating yet another thought.

Rather, we go into the stillness, to the energy producing our thoughts. Always, in meditation there is “light emphasis” on the breath (Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche) to sustain us as we sit in the stillness of our internal investigation, emptying ourselves.

As I understand mindfulness, it is bringing this technique to our day-to-day lives as they play out among the ten thousand things. For me, that means letting one storyline after another blow right past for I am interested in the energy supporting those thoughts. I am seeking the source.

Tadpole Free 0613

In this lupus flare, rather than pursuing my usual cause-effect-solution approach—another way of describing this is replacing one storyline with another, albeit a new and untried solution—I sought the source, the stillness, with my breath.

Stillness or “nowness” is placing our awareness on our breath as the thoughts bubble up. The breath is no more manipulated than are the thoughts. The more the breath and mind are observed, the more there is just being, no judgment, just stillness.

Internally investigating my lupus flare allowed me to sit in the energy of the ten thousand things of which my life is just one.  Rather than trying to starve or manipulate the lupus–the wolf–that is also of the ten thousand things, I just sat down with it in relationship.

Flares are never without their gifts nor is it surprising that those flares that burn brightest are always the most generous. This time, the gift of sitting meditation with the wolf has opened the door to a lifetime exploration of the rise and fall of the ten thousand things from the inside out.

Thanks to all of you for your generosity and kindness during this recent flare.