Falling Upwards

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Do be do be do … – Frank Sinatra November 25, 2017

I’ve been struggling a lot, lately, with living and doing. I’ve got the being part down pat. You know, the thing that spiritual leaders tell you is the main part of being a spiritual being (see? There’s a lot of “being” in those two sentences!). But, as I tell those who come to me for advice, we live in this 3D reality, which means that we have to do and act and live. And, as I repeatedly tell them — Action is creation made manifest.

The result of action is a product, in the form of a service or a thing. I often wonder – is it “creation” if there is nothing to show but an idea in your head? And, I keep coming back to the same answer. No. Creation necessitates completion, starting with the energy of an idea and culminating in the product, the something tangible (even if it’s just in the un-seeable form of service rendered).

I have struggled with this for years. On and off, I believed that my inability to act is due to laziness or lack of discipline. But, deep down I know that is just my Shadow talking. I mean, geez, all those years I woke up early to get my kid ready for school, make him lunch, and get him to places he needed to be were years of doing stuff that is not in my nature. Now that he’s grown, I’ve spent entire weekends in my pajamas just because I can and I want to. But, is that “living” just sitting for hours on end, in comfy clothes, with nary a thought of getting anything done?  I know for sure it’s existing. Sitting there deep in thought or meditation, it could be labeled being because that sounds so much more “spiritual.” Some might call it depression, but I really do enjoy doing nothing, and my happiness exists within me.

Lately, people keep telling me that we are “spiritual beings in a human body” as if I’ve never heard that before and they were the first to think of it. The proper quote was from Pierre Tielhard de Chardin:

We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.

Ah … but see?! The people quoting Tielhard de Chardin to me have been misquoting him! Or, giving those folks the benefit of the doubt, I have been mis-hearing them!

In the actual quote, we are having an “experience.” What is that?
Because I’m a word nerd, I looked it up on Merriam-Webster online. It’s first definition is:
a : direct observation of or participation in events as a basis of knowledge
b : the fact or state of having been affected by or gained knowledge through direct observation or participation

So, if I’m interpreting the definition correctly, I can easily have an experience just by watching, observing. It’s sort of a voyeuristic way to live; kind of like the way we live vicariously through others, e.g., actors in productions, sports figures playing their games, or even friend dramas when we gossip about their lives.

I have a tendency to take this a step farther, as I think many people do. I will often come up with an idea, work it out in my head with all the details to make the idea happen. Then, I will let it go. In my mind, literally, the product, service, event, or whatever has a beginning and an end. It never sees the light outside the darkness of my own mind. I’ve always thought I was okay with that.

Blackbird singing in the dead of night

But, I’ve recently realized that the idea may come back to niggle at the back of my mind. It may be a feeling of incompleteness or, very rarely, what some may consider as regret. It’s the same thing as when you see something or hear of someone do something innovative and think, “hey! I thought of that!” And maybe think that you should have. For me, I’ve never considered any undone thing to be a regrettable inaction. I’m more inclined to think “hey! That’s cool that someone had the same idea I had and did it! That’s wild that we could have the same thought!”

Thinking back, I could probably trace this to when I was, like, 5 or 6 years old. My family was driving from Chicago to Virginia to visit my family. And, my dad was always the one driving. I thought how great it would be if my mother’s side also had a steering wheel so she could take over driving whenever Dad was tired. Many months later, I saw a TV ad for a driving school where their selling point was that the instructor had his own steering wheel to “take over” driving for safety’s sake (or something like that). I thought, “Hey! That was my idea!” But, I realized I was child and couldn’t do anything about it even if it was my good idea. (Yes, I was a very self-aware child.)

Take these broken wings and learn to fly
All your life
You were only waiting for this moment to arrive.

I’m not a child anymore. And, in the mental back and forth of what it truly means to be alive, I consider whether mental exercises of creation are sufficient. In fact, are you actually creating if there is nothing to show for it? If there is no manifestation of the thought?

And, in all my philosophizing, I consider what it is to be human. What is our purpose in this human experience? Why am I not simply a spiritual being that is . . . spirit? Why was I born into this world?

In the Bible I was raised on, I learned that Man is made in the image of God. What does that mean? That God looks like us? Even before I left my church, I knew and believed that God/dess exists within all living beings. That all my eyes look upon are, in some way, images of God. That is my spiritual belief. But, I know there is truth in religious teachings. We just have to dig deep to understand and find that truth. What is the truth of that statement – man is made in the image of God? And, of course, I acknowledge that there are multiple understandings and multiple truths to any statement because, as with all things, it is a matter of perspective.

One of those truths is that God is a Creator. And, if we are made in His/Her image, we are creators, too. And . . . creation exists outside of a thought. If it didn’t, you and I wouldn’t exist. We would still just be God’s thought.

Blackbird singing in the dead of night
Take these sunken eyes and learn to see
All your life,
You were only waiting for this moment to be fre
e

Yes, as all life coaches and esoteric and rah-rah folks will tell you, manifestation begins with deep imagination, dreaming in detail, of what you want to create and/or accomplish. In our mainstream world, we see corporations and business folks use this as their first step in strategic planning when they write their vision and mission statements. But, it is the action — the planning, the steps taken, and the actual production of the service or physical object  — that completes and makes manifest the creation.

I think it is that feeling of “incompletion” that hurts our soul. Yes, there are things we can let go or leave undone. But, those wonderful things we have imagined, those ideas that begin to spread their wings in the comfort of our minds, need to break free to truly be able to become.

I mis-heard those human guides correctly because we are not only spiritual beings having a human experience, we are also spiritual beings in a human body. We are physical beings, a manifestation of God/dess’ imagined conception; a true complete creation. If part of my purpose is to be an image of God/dess, then it is my purpose to create and manifest. For that, I must act; I must do.

I guess there is much wisdom in Mr. Sinatra’s words. As an image of God/dess, my purpose is to do be do be do. (yeah, I crack myself up!) And, of course, a nice reminder from the Beatles:

All your life
You were only waiting for this moment to arise
You were only waiting for this moment to arise
You were only waiting for this moment to arise


P.S., I just watched another YouTube video explaining the background of this song written by Paul McCartney. Supposedly, it was inspired by the Civil Rights movement and the blackbird represents a woman living in oppression. In the context of this essay, I wonder if the worst type of oppression is self-oppression. We limit ourselves and our capabilities by keeping our talents and wisdom hidden and our Selves caged. Hmmm.. what do you think?

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I Am the Walrus October 20, 2017

I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together
See how they run like pigs from a gun, see how they fly
I’m crying

The Beatles’ song, I Am the Walrus, was the B-side of their hit single Hello, Goodbye. When I found that out on Wikipedia, I thought it was serendipity, and I’ll explain that in a bit. I wanted to write this blog as an update to the last blog post – what did I end up doing and where am I now? I’m inspired by listening to songs, so I Googled one for “where am I now.” The walrus song popped up, and it just felt fun and right to me.

So, the things I’m reading about I Am the Walrus is that it was written as a nonsense song. At this moment, right now as I write this, I feel like “nonsense,” in its most whimsical sense, is the very word that applies to my life. Two years after my last post, I did “do it all!” I went to grad school and graduated this past June with an M.A. in Transpersonal Psychology, a specialization in spiritual psychology and certificates in transpersonal ecopsychology and creative expressions. I did everything I could possibly do in the time I allotted myself for school. But …. now what?

Sitting in an English garden waiting for the sun
If the sun don’t come, you get a tan
From standing in the English rain

I went to grad school not because having the degree would enhance any career opportunities I might have. I went simply for the love of learning. And, the program I entered taught all those things I had already been (unknowingly) learning for myself in the articles, books, and random webinars and seminars I’d been taking. However, I did go in thinking that, over the course of the two years, I would come out with a better understanding of what I was to do with my life, career-wise.

Four months after graduation, as jobless as I was before and with no idea of what types of jobs I can apply to, I might say I’m no closer to fulfilling that particular area of “adulting” than I was two years ago. I might say that, but I won’t. Since July, I’ve embarked on three potential career opportunities. One of them didn’t pan out; another has been put on hold. And, the third just presented itself a couple of weeks ago.

Though I did not come to a definite idea of my career path while I was in grad school, what I did learn (and continue to discover) is my authentic Self, my purpose in this life, the innate gifts I possess, and the knowledge and experience I have to offer. At the moment, all these things point to coaching as a profession. The irony is that I’ve been telling everyone who has suggested coaching (or that I go into the coaching program) a firm and definite “NO!” I have had a business coach and a life coach, so it is definitely something I believe has value. It was just something I couldn’t see myself doing. So, I reframed my idea of coaching.

In my first quarter of grad school, I was writing in my journal and channeled a poem (this was just the beginning of how my innate gifts began presenting themselves to me and me remembering what some of them are). In it, I was told that part of my life’s purpose is to be a “healer of healers.” The understanding of what that means has been, and is, unraveling slowly. Coincidentally, many of my former classmates are, themselves, healers of all forms – from energetic healers in the esoteric world to people who have or want to create programs that help people heal from their various traumas. And, as I worked through my grad program, I found I have an ability to “hold space” for people. Again, in the esoteric world, this may mean energetic space. But, what does that really even mean? From a very grounded and practical standpoint, it simply means that I can listen well, with compassion, without judgement, and with total acceptance of the speaker’s truth, pain, challenge, or what-have-you. Isn’t it interesting how changing verbiage allows one to change perspective to better understand?

I say high, you say low
You say why and I say I don’t know, oh no

 I decided that part of my “job” in this world is to help those who help others in the way I can best do it just by being myself.

So, if it didn’t occur to you in previous blog posts over the years, I’m a bit of a “woo-woo” gal. You wouldn’t know it to look at me. I rarely wear the uniform or have the affectations of someone you’d consider a neo-hippie or spiritual seeker (though my one allowance to this was to wear a flower crown for my graduation). And … gasp! I have an undergraduate degree in business from a top-rated school. My work experience has been with helping small businesses get into the black or increase their profitability by implementing policies and procedures and streamlining their efforts. These are seemingly strict, hardline things for the flowy, free-spirited person I am. Yet, it all works together, within me. I can dream big, embrace and practice the spiritual, and still convert all of it to practical actions explained with mainstream terminology. And, vice versa! What I have found I’m good at doing is advising (still don’t like the word “coach”) creative and spiritual people like myself establish their businesses/nonprofit/career path by identifying their fears, reframing their understanding of them, and break through blockages so they can take affirmative action.

The serendipity I mentioned before is found in that the intention for this blog post is that it is my way of completing the last chapter of my life and starting this new one. So, really, I’m saying, “Goodbye. Hello!”

You say yes
I say no
You say stop
and I say go go go

In our current socio-political climate, there is a tremendous need for people who help others and spread the love in their own authentic ways. The time for recognizing, acknowledging, and putting into action our individual gifts to benefit humanity is NOW. That sounds so lofty and high-reaching. But, is it really? How often do we suppress our authentic selves, disregard the knowledge and gifts within for fear that we won’t fit into social norms or that doing so would affect our financial lives, or . . . whatever. There are so many reasons, so many excuses. Most point to fear. Is it possible that the fact there are now thousands of coaches offering their services point to the fact that tens of thousands are tired of living this way? In my own way, I have decided to do my part to heal the disconnect many feel in their lives.

With this blog post, I close with “goodbye” and hail with a new “hello! So glad to see you again!” I will be posting other blog entries through two other channels on www.earth-connect.org , the social organization I’m in the process of creating with a friend, and on http://www.spiritualreflectionsadvising.com, which isn’t yet live but will house my spiritual business advising (coaching) efforts. I hope you’ll come to visit me there. For personal, spiritual editorials, you can continue to find me here at Falling Upwards.

Btw, for those who read the last post, my son also took an alternate route in life. He took a “leave of absence” from his undergrad where he was bored, unmotivated, and unhappy. He came home. But instead of taking a year off to breathe a little, he applied and is going to grad school. It turns out you don’t necessarily need an undergraduate degree to get your masters if the graduate program is an out-of-the-box, alternative one that values knowledge and experience over degrees. My wonderful son is also innately a healer and is studying Oriental medicine.

I hope you’ll continue to follow me in my journey. I have so much to share with you – stuff I learned in school and stuff I’m learning on my own, but which I think I may have known all along. I’m sure there’s stuff I can also learn from you. Maybe we can explore a topic a month together? Let me know!

P.S., I’ll update this once I create my spiritual business advising website. And, if you want to find out about healing through Nature, follow our fanpage on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EarthConnectOrg/

 

Dreaming about the things that we could be… April 28, 2014

Yesterday morning, I stopped to talk to a man in my fave, local coffee shop. He was sitting at a table making chain mail. Yup… you read that right… chain mail. I questioned him about it at length; asked who he was making it for and what its uses were, etc. He giggled, thinking it was funny that some random little girl was asking him about chain mail. I told him I thought it was a very cool hobby and an interesting skill.

The night before, I’d had a lovely conversation with my son who has called me less than a half dozen times since starting college last Fall. So, the few times we’ve talk, they’ve been longer conversations during which he’ll talk about something on his mind that he needs a different perspective on because he can’t figure it out for himself, and it is often the social aspect of college. My kid is inherently introverted and finds it difficult to make friends. In fact, though he seems to be superficially outgoing and friendly, he finds it difficult to understand and deal with people in general. It’s genetics. His father was the same, and so am I. His dad and I both had to come out of our “shells” in college and learn how to socialize.

“And my face is flashing signs
Seek it out and you shall find”

I told my son that when I meet someone, I ask them about themselves, not only to get to know them but because I love to hear people’s stories. Every person I’ve ever met has had an interesting, often times inspirational or educational, story to tell. Every person has something crazy cool about them, regardless of how they may appear on the surface. Had I not seen the man making chain mail at the coffee shop, I would never have known that this random person has an interest in, and has deeply researched, a period of history and a specific craft that one would think is obsolete in this day and age. In fact, he told me that much of what he makes is used by divers and people who handle animals, among other things. It’s amazing what things you learn just by talking to people about their interests.

Lately, I’ve been, I’ve been losing sleep
Dreaming about the things that we could be
But baby, I’ve been, I’ve been praying hard,
Said, no more counting dollars
We’ll be, we’ll be counting stars”

I read a free iBook yesterday about a man and his robot girlfriend (His Robot Girlfriend). The robot pretty much started doing everything for him, all the menial, household tasks that he wasn’t doing for himself because he was busy sitting on the couch watching TV. By changing his diet and encouraging him to exercise, she helped him to become healthier and have more energy. And, with her industrious example, he started to use his time to do projects around the house, then to start working on a book he’d been meaning to write. The robot girlfriend encouraged him to be disciplined, care for himself and put time into his passions, to become a better, more complete, version of himself; reach for and attain his “possibilities.”

Old, but I’m not that old
Young, but I’m not that bold
I don’t think the world is sold
I’m just doing what we’re told
I feel something so wrong
Doing the right thing
I could lie, could lie, could lie
Everything that drowns me makes me wanna fly”

Through my conversations with people, I’ve learned  a couple of things : (1) we are all the same, and (2) we are all crazy interesting and unique.

Every single person, every human being, has their story, whether happy, sad, hopeful or whatever … we all come from someplace and someone, and we all have our “whys” as to how we got to where we each are at this moment in time. We have this commonality across the board.

Also, every single person has their “possibilities,” whether we are currently acting upon them or they still lie in our future. These possibilities are unique to each person. What makes you drown makes me fly. There can be no judgement there because, despite how differently you see the world, how different your beliefs, your interests or actions, now or in the future may be, despite our “differences,” we are truly all the same in that we each have a story.

And, in this world that seems so divided by politics, religion, social and economic perspectives, or what-have-you, we all live under and count the same stars.

Lately, I’ve been, I’ve been losing sleep
Dreaming about the things that we could be
But baby, I’ve been, I’ve been praying hard,
Said, no more counting dollars
We’ll be counting stars”