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Monday, June 24, 2013

The Back Story

One of the most essential tasks facing the news reporter is the discovery of THE BACK STORY explaining why an event has occurred.  

Therein lies the impetus...the driving force...of the action.  And it's not always readily available or easy to discern. 

Sometimes, reporters have to switch hats, becoming the investigator, the detective or even the psychologist.

What is behind or in "back" of a person's actions is very instructive...even fascinating.  That is why reporters need to be open to discovering this "bigger" story.

But why should reporters have all the fun? 

Let us suppose that we decide to become the "journalist" as we go through our day encountering family, friends,  neighbors, sales persons, ińdividuals shopping alongside us, gas station attendants, the drivers on the road.

One thing we can be very sure of...everyone has a back story.  As we reflect on this concept, several considerations about this arise.


What joys have these individuals experienced?  What obstacles  have they encountered? What has broken their hearts?  Lifted them up?  What do they struggle with?  Blame themselves for?  Cry over (symbolically or literally)?

And, most importantly, what has transpired today...before we
encountered them?  What pain might they be feeling?  What happiness are they celebrating?  What affirmation from us could  bring Light or Joy to their hearts? 

Typically, people react to their experience of what a person says or does to them...or, perhaps, to the person's tone or body language.   In short, we react to how we "perceive" a person makes us feel.  And if it's an "ouch" that we feel, it's VERY easy to drop into annoyance, frustration...or even anger.

Two things about this. 

First...whatever reaction we choose to have to an encounter is exactly that...our CHOICE.  No one MAKES us do or feel anything.

Second, there is the question...HOW do we learn to offer a response that would be life enhancing for us (and for the other person) while we may be hearing uncomfortable things said to us?

THIS is the perfect place to put on our reporter's hat (or hats...whatever is called for in this circumstance) and go to work on finding the back story.

Unearthing this information will bring a new perspective to this moment.  And even though it might be impossible to unearth it right then,  I am betting that we can sense the emotional import of the back story and how it has affected the person with whom we are interacting. 

Now, as we sense this person's anxiety or distress or frustration, the tense tone in their voice doesn't feel personal and we move directly into a moment of concern for the person's situation.  That's a far cry from entering into the fray and making a heated moment grow even more intense.

And, while we are learning how to gracefully include this loving gesture into our personal repertoire, let's give ourselves special consideration for our own back story as it reveals itself in the moments of our life.

The effort to look beyond the obvious seems like a wise investment.

Whenever we are able to take into account the BIG PICTURE

 (that's present moment awareness AND the consideration of the many interweaving threads that make up a back story),

we are able to move effortlessly into the beauty of Compassion...a wonderful choice that is always available to us.

image from ifanboy.com

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Inchworms, Turtles and the Finishing Line

We all know about the tortoise who won the race. And the inchworm who edged his way to success.

Something in their “stories” gave them the persistence and tenacity to complete the tasks they set out to do.

Perhaps the tortoise and inchworm had an innate impulse to go the distance.

Perhaps they very wisely balanced their lives and conserved their energy so they could call upon their reserves of wellness and vitality when this was most needed.

And perhaps they were so fortunate as many of us are to have a very special inspiration figuring predominantly in our lives…the masculine energy that is holding so strongly the image of our success…despite all odds.

That kind of special faith and support is often personalized in our father or father figure or someone close who is inhabiting that role for us…sending us light and energy to help us stay the course…to dig deep inside us to find the reserves of strength we need.

Mr. Miyagi in the Karate Kid did that for Daniel-san.

Miyagi always held a
knowingness of the power and goodness of Daniel-san. He instilled a strong sense of honor in the young man and taught him that it is the way he conducts himself that determines whether he has successfully run (and completed) the race.

On the occasion of Father’s Day this June 16 let us take a moment to thank all of our real life and symbolic fathers in appreciation for their precious gift of faith in our goodness and strength and in our ability to navigate life with courage and honor.

And a special shout out for the very masculine preference for lightness and humor in this very challenging work. As Mr. Miyagi tells Daniel-san,

Man who catch fly with chopstick accomplish anything.

image from www.listal.com

originally published June 12, 2011

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Bird with the Loudest (and Softest) Song

I listened to the BIRD with the loudest song as dawn was breaking today. 

It was telling all the other birds to wake up. 

 It did not call out as it thought it was the boss; it called out from  the feeling that all should be rejoicing with the beginning of a new day. 

Its sole purpose was to wake all the other birds as it had a message to share.  Because the message was shared from a feeling...it touched the hearts of all the other birds and not a single bird ignored the call.

                    Lexie Henderson

Can you imagine a world in which every message we hear (like the song of the bird) is shared from a deep feeling of the heart...a world in which every message represents a profound and awesome truth about how someone has been affected by life, what someone has discovered, perhaps, or how they have become elated, bliss-ful and filled with joy?

Wouldn't those messages be ones we would not want to miss...because they are so powerful and authentic and real...so truth-telling and so instructive?

Undoubtedly, there would be something in the sound or sense of the message that would compel our attention, our engagement, our happiness-sharing, our joy.

These messages would help us understand our world and the persons who inhabit it.  They would help us understand ourselves and how we connect with others through the Divine Matrix.

The "birds" with the loudest songs sing the most powerfully because they have worked through something important in their lives.  They have had an epiphany and they are joyfully trumpeting their message.

But what about the "birds"  (please read people) who have not finished their processing?  

 Most of us fall into that category at some time in our lives.   

These birds are a work-in-progress.  Their "songs" are not the loudest, nor the most powerful. Rather they are a reaching out to others for understanding, for support, for affirmation, for compassion...and, most importantly, for connection.

But we cannot connect if we do not hear their songs.

Perhaps our role in life is to celebrate the "loudest" bird songs which reveal the joyful moments of someone's connection


to  listen ever more closely to the softest, tenderest, weakest songs being trilled by birds whose wings need our support, attention and love.

image from dianaevans.blogspot.com.      

Saturday, June 8, 2013


I am a lonely petunia in an onion patch...as the song goes..
.when it comes to the subject of SPORTS

In fact, I am the ONLY one in the family who does not understand even the rudimentary dynamics of football, baseball and basketball. 

And even though I do not understand what all the excitement is about, I clearly see that there is a lot of enthusiasm and energy and enjoyment of these endeavors. 

In an attempt to catapult myself (even an inch or two) into the "in" group I try to listen for catchwords and phrases used by the sports afficianados.  

Recently, I was captivated by hearing family members use the term "SWISH" to describe an amazing adventure of twelve year old Dylan.  His mother said the experience was probably going to be one of the five most exciting of his life.  Well, that certainly got my attention.  I tuned in to see what the hullabaloo was all about.

Turns out Dylan was out on the basketball court tossing the ball around with his friends after a high-school basketball game.  The boys were not alone. 

Since the game had just ended, basketball players, their families and coaches were all gathered around.  Dylan tossed the ball from the side of the court behind the three point line and made a SWISH which I have come to understand is a very cool move.  It means the basketball passes through the basket without hitting the hoop or backboard.  Definitely worthy of note.

After this feat, Dylan got the ball again for another try, this time moving to the other side of the court (still behind the three point line)...taking aim...and lo and behold...another SWISH.  At this point, even the grown-ups were beginning to notice and Dylan took a third shot.  You guessed it...SWISH!

Now the coaches were becoming curious about the excitement going on and they watched Dylan continue to move around the court making THREE more SWISHES.  That's a total of SIX SWISHES all behind the three point line and even a completely uneducated sports spectator like me knows this was a really big deal.

Now comes the part that truly  delights me. 

All along, Dylan has been poised for success.  His dad has coached his team several times with loving wisdom and patience.  His big brother is an accomplished athlete.  His mother is the most devoted fan imaginable.  And, beyond  even this, Dylan's adventures with basketball have centered around being in FLOW.

Now THIS concept I understand...and I am truly captivated by it.  This is what I experience when I write.  And it serves me well.   And it apparently serves Dylan well.  And it is even serving his brother Colin well with his inspiring golf scores this spring.

When something works this well, I want to experiment with it...capture  all of the magic I can.  The other night I awoke with the word SWISH echoing in my mind.  There was a good feeling attached to this...a lightness, a feeling of celebration.  Before long I understood why.

My subconscious was attempting to borrow the concept of the SWISH to reward myself when I took on a difficult challenge. 

For example, when I want to choose "the road less traveled" (also called the HIGH ROAD) when I experience an emotional trigger and it feels VERY difficult to do so... I can classify the follow through of that courageous action by me as a SWISH in the emotional journal of my life,

Wow!  I can hear the crowd roaring at my fabulous  play.  What skill!  What beautiful moves! What tenacity!  Well..., maybe it's just me giving myself the high five for really "stepping up".

At any rate, using my imagination to inspire and motivate me to become "the next, grandest version of myself" works a-ma-zing-ly well.

Are you an imaginary basketball star-in-the-making?  Is there a SWISH or two or ten in your future? 

Just think of the awesome artistry used to seamlessly navigate that ball (your troublesome issue) through the basket (your interpersonal relationships) because you have the stamina, wisdom and grace to enter into FLOW (acceptance and honoring of what life is presenting to you).

Sounds great to me and I'm all in. 

Looks like I'm on the court with the rest of the basketball  players...only just not in the same dimension.   : )

image from gograph.com

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Parade

The fascinating unfolding of evolution has delivered us into a most stunning time in history. 
The universe is moving into a position of heart centeredness

And what a wonderful place that is to be!

As we turn an observant eye to what is going on around us,  it is astounding what we can  sense and see.  The energy feels exhilarating as we witness people exhibiting caring and compassion, generosity, self-discovery, connection and centeredness.

When I see this gorgeous display circling all around me, I want to be a part of that PARADE. 

And here’s a fascinating way I found to enjoy this amazing ride.

Over the years many people have described the essence of Love.   Recently,  I heard someone say that Love is the recognition of beauty.  And, it occurred to me, that by being open to beauty we bring LOVE right into the center of our lives

If we glance at our miraculous world we can see beauty everywhere…but today I am talking particularly about the beauty of people.  

I have been cultivating a new avocation.  When I think of people I know and meet, I immediately focus on a beautiful quality (trait, talent) of theirs. 

Even though they may have several, I choose the one that RESONATES with me in that moment.   I immerse myself in admiration for that beautiful quality and, in that process...the process of reveling in this beautyI find my way to Love
Here's  the really cool thing about this.  When I embrace and enjoy their beautiful trait,  I automatically  enter into the process of entrainment.  This means that I am soaking up the energy of their stellar quality and…all this time…

I am also resting in the lap of Love .

What a fascinating journey into this awesome Love space...recognizing, honoring and emulating the beauty presenting itself through the gifts of everyone around me!

image from Terminators.com

Picasso, Pablo (1881-1973)
Sketch of Set for the "Parade"
Date: 1917

Sunday, June 2, 2013

A Late Night Call and the Cat Face Piñata


Yesterday was my BIRTHDAY

 I received many beautiful gifts...including a scarf sent from Paris, books by Alan Watts, yellow roses.

I had an Italian dinner outside with my family observed overhead by a smiling, white and pink cat-faced piñata just waiting to reveal her treasures.

Yes, it was truly a lovely day.  "And" it also contained a very special spiritual gift...the role modeling of a solution to a challenging problem...a solution I have been in avid pursuit of for some time.

Here is the BACK STORY about this amazing gift.

I received a phone call the night before my birthday shortly before midnight...the cusp of my big day. 

It was an unexpected call (enhancing the drama) and it came from The Big Apple.  I would guess my subconscious was also involved in the planning of this moment because I had just posted a blog entitled "Happy Birthday to Me" and the caller, who had just awakened from a catnap, had set his alarm to give me his birthday greeting.

I was surprised and delighted by the call and proceeded to enjoy a lively, high vibrational (was this my first clue?), spirited conversation.  

After a little while, my friend suggested we do a three way phone call with a cohort of ours.  I agreed and thereafter, a conversation ensued ( I call it a comedy of errors in retrospect) in which my friend tried to explain to me how I could start the process and he could enter into it as a surprise

Except that I was never able to figure out what he was trying to tell me.

Round and round we went until my friend burst out laughing and said, "This is hilarious.  I am going to give up trying to control this and just let it happen."

I was astounded by the emotion he was expressing as he uttered the "C" word...CONTROL.  

This word has always signaled difficulty to me.   A problem I needed to deal with.  Work.  Hard work And, here he was laughing and calling the situation "hilarious"


THIS was truly a NEW VIEW for me of the concept of control...

Trying to achieve "Control" can lead to a messy, confusing production 
that is (if you hold on to some perspective) funny...actually, hilarious

And this is what my friend saw in the moment and immediately released his attempt to make something happenHe backed right off and let the Universe do its thing instead.

A wise choice.  This came very clear to me very fast because we immediately found ourselves right back into our beautiful conversational flow.

I found this experience...this significant conversation with my friend...to be a very powerful gift

Suddenly, I felt myself lightening up around the concept of control.  The messiness and sloppiness of "trying" to orchestrate something is now striking me as a comedy of wasted energy and the more quickly I am able to realize that fact, the faster I can direct my life back into its lovely flow.

These days I am waiting for passing MOON beams or beams of SUN light to move things along...however the glorious universe presents the unfolding.

A lot simpler.  A lot easier.  And a lot more fun.

Nice touch for an awesome Birthday.  Perhaps that's why the "cat" was smiling!

image from colourbox.com