Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Indiana is poised and waiting. In the last two days, the temperature dropped from 89 degrees in the blazing afternoon to a cool 73. The sky is thick with big gray clouds. The leaves shimmer on the branches, just ready to begin turning.

The river birch tree in our garden has already begun shedding her leaves. Maybe she's more interested in being one of the first of the season than she is in displaying any colorful magnificence. :)

It's one of those moments of heightened awareness when the fullness of summer is all around you. You take a deep breath and look all around. In just a moment--any moment now--everything will begin to change very quickly. The leaves will turn colors and become a carpet on the ground; the sky will clear and become frosty blue. Soon the snow will fly.

But for this moment, the air is big with the abundant life and growth of summer. We have something to celebrate. We are ready. Let the winds of change bring the next awesome vista in this journey.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

The Perfect Blessing

I found this wonderful blessing in this month's edition of Yoga Journal:

Lokah Samasta

Sukinoh Bhavantu

May all beings everywhere be happy and free, and may the thoughts, words, and actions of my own life contribute to the happiness and freedom for all."

Doesn't that just cover what you would wish for every living being everywhere? If everyone everywhere were happy and free, there would be no war, no hate, no sickness, no hardship, no poverty, no isolation, no rejection of anything God created, ever. It's the ideal of the kingdom of heaven realized within us.

May you be happy and free today, moving in harmony with the limitless Love that created, sustains, and cares for you. :)

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The crime of comparison

This morning as I was driving through the misty countryside (the sun was just coming up and lighting the fog hovering over the cornfields--gorgeous!), I thought about the fresh intensity of beauty, perfection, life. This moment is unlike any other. It has its own gift, its own peace, its own perfection. I don't need to compare it with any other moment--when, I muse absently, I was either happier or sadder, more preoccupied or more present, more in tune or more out of sync. This moment is perfect now. I feel joy and appreciation in it. End of story.

The crime of comparison, I think, is that when we line a moment up with another--or compare our accomplishments with another person's, someone's house against another person's house, this car against that one, this talent and that, we overlook the sacredness of both people, places, moments, or events we're comparing. Each has a gift, if we have the open eyes and heart to receive it.

May each of us be open to the holy gift in each and every moment, person, and experience today. :)

Monday, August 21, 2006


My son Cameron is 13 and loves golf. He loves it so much that he played on average three times a week throughout the summer. By the end of the season, he was ready for some better clubs. His score for 18 holes had dropped from 100 to 88. He started watching every golf match he could find on television. He observed the pros. He spent lots of time on the course. It seemed to be the one thing he couldn't get enough of.

I decided that this was enough of a passion that I wanted to invite an expert to give him some feedback, so I contacted the golf pro at the course where Cameron plays. The lesson was interesting and packed with really amazing but subtle information that applied not just to golf but to life. Chuck talked about the importance of taking time, looking clearly, noticing your energy, balancing on your feet. He explained (and demonstrated through some actions Cameron could immediately feel and understand) how the muscles work together to support you in a natural, efficient swing.

He demonstrated how when all these forces are in tune--sight, balance, and motion--the contact with the the ball is natural and fluid, sending it 240 yards straight toward the pin at the end of the farway.

This morning I've been thinking about efficiency. When our forces--mind, emotions, body--are in tune, I think efficiency is dramatically increased in all areas of our life. We move with grace; we respond emotionally to the present moment and then move on through it; we have the energy we need to complete the tasks of our day with joy and appreciation. Efficiency makes things look easy, because everything is in alignment leading up to that point. When the contact--with the ball, the event, the obstacle, or the person--is made, all the harmony of the universe is lined up to support it. :)

Friday, August 18, 2006


I found this amazing quote by Franz Kafka in a powerful book I'm reading right now called Essential Aurveda: What it is & what it can do for you:

"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 ecstacy at your feet."

How wonderful is that?!

I picked up this book because although something I found in an article on Auryvedic eating cured 25 years of chronic headaches for me (no kidding!), I had never really understood Auryvedic principles enough to know how to put balanced meals together. I thought it was complicated. But this book makes it simple, and elegant, and clear. And what's more, the author, Shubhra Krishan, writes about health and beauty in all elements of life--not simply diet (although what we put into our bodies--physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually is very important in terms of encouraging or creating obstacles for health).

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Just what we need, when we need it

I am continually surprised to discover that I tend to write about things that I will need later that day. It's curious--the post I wrote yesterday had occurred to me as a flash of an idea when I was writing to my friend. After I posted it, I thought I'd wrapped up the idea and put it out there, and that was that. But at 2:00am this morning it really came in handy. Something startled me awake and then I was suddenly beset by a huge cloud of anxiety--about everything, from my work to my relationships to my house. I was so churned up inside I couldn't get comfortable and tossed and turned. It was so unlike me (I usually sleep soundly and well--especially when the nights are cool enough to have the windows open!) and the fact that it was unusual gave me something else to worry about!

But then I remembered my post from yesterday morning. I noticed instantly that my stomach was tightened into a knot. Even my jaw was tight. I realized that I was fighting imaginary problems in the dark, when I was only partially conscious and not clear-headed enough to refute the worries as I might in the light of day. What I really needed to do was identify the sources of the upset--real or not--and then, one by one, give them to God and leave them for Him to deal with. So I mentally grabbed hold of the first worry, and put it in God's hands with a prayer. There, that felt better. I did it with the next worry, and the next one, and the next one. My jaw relaxed. My breathing slowed and lightened. Soon my stomach had unknotted. Soft and open, remember? By the time I'd handed off all my mostly imaginary worries to God, I was well on my way back to sleep.

Thanks, God, for giving us what we need before we even know we need it. You think of Everything. :)

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Who's speaking, God? You or me?

Corresponding with a dear friend the other day, I realized that I use a kind of built-in discernment tool when I'm trying to determine whether a leading is coming from God or from me.

When there's something going on--maybe something that I'm praying for that I really want to happen--and I get that sense of peace about it, I feel that I've "turned the battle" over to God and it's out of my hands. But to really be sure, I check in with how I feel.

If I feel soft and open inside, knowing that I'll trust God no matter what happens, I feel like I'm in tune with God.

If I feel hard and rigid inside, thinking, "this just HAS TO happen!," then I usually think I haven't really turned the situation over to God and I'm still clutching to it and hoping I'll get my way, whether that is God's way or not.

For me, God's thoughts bring a strong sense of peace and everything's okay-ness. They always join, share, include, love. The thoughts I have that do not spring from my connection with God are often about worry, control, or my own protection. That seems really significant to me.

Luckily God will bring those hurting thoughts back to the whole, sooner or later, when I realize what's happening and really turn the issue over once and for all.

Friday, August 11, 2006

The Centering Point

This morning I awoke with such a strong sense of okayness at the core of my being. It's hard to describe, but it's as though I finally found that place within where God is always shining, untouched and uninhibited by the worries of the world or the demands of my day. During yoga, I let the feeling of that sacred space wash over me. In meditation, it was still there. I wrote about it (such as I could, with words and their limits) in my journal. Now, five hours later, it's still with me. Could it be a new piece of understanding that has come to stay? God, I hope so. :)