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Juice-Feasting, Sledding, Pain and Paradox: Reflections for A New Year

Happy HolidaysDid you hang with the Divine this Christmas?

Whatever holiday or tradition you may be celebrating, I hope that within the family and the traditions, the memories and the hustle, you found time for reflection.

I completely unplugged for almost two full weeks, and it was challenging, marvelous, magical, and clarifying.

I juice-feasted. (www.juicefeasting.com) I slept.  I cleared clutter from my home and contemplated what needed to be released from my work life to make room for the rock-my-world goals we have created for 2011.

I sledded, skiied, shoveled, walked in the snow, and reveled in the joys of cuddling my growing children.

I spent a lot of time looking at my inner world, and wishing what was there was different, and yet sitting in patience and acceptance until the next wave of creation rises.  And then impatient again.

I spent a lot of time struggling with the suffering of the world. Ironically, having discovered from the very absolute core of my being that we are part of an ever-abundant, creative, loving evolution, I increasingly find the suffering that is part of all of us more painful.

I feel more love and more gratitude and more bliss than I ever imagined…and I also really struggle with how the unshakeable Truth of that co-exists with crippling unemployement, shame and anger, natural disaster, war and terror, snippy moods and unconscious cruelty.

Ken Wilbur calls the successful embracing of this paradox an evolution into a state of “hurts more, bothers you less.” (see a clip here.) Hurts more because your heart opens more, allows more, sees more.  Bothers you less in the sense that the experience of pain no longer necessitates the closing of your consiousness, the shutting of the castle defenses, the pulling in of the turtle’s head.

I have also been having an absolute blast delivering my first-ever group tele-class program.  It is amazing to me that we are able today to gather people from all over the world and connect through “thin air.”  I am overwhelmed with gratitude that I get to share life-changing information with such amazing people while working from home and admiring the pine trees and snowy mountains of my backyard.

We all move through this dance, the mundane, the sacred, the inner and the outer, the public and the private, the concrete and the unknowable.

Where is the balance point of our life? What do we do when what matters most to us changes? Who are we when the plans we put in motion at the top of our game seem impossible while we travel the bottom of our game?  Do we even remember we are traveling a circle, or a spiral? Or do we think the great times of expansion are going to last forever, no setbacks; and the dark times feel similarly immutable?

Who are we as we watch ourselves in this dance?  Where is the balance between striving for our goals and knowing there is no goal?

I don’t have answers with a capital A. But I have different answers today than I did a few weeks ago.

We live in a fast-paced, miraculous time full of information and change.  I believe in the importance of making time for contemplation, for contraction, for inward focus to balance the outward focus.  I often feel a sense a lonliness in this belief, a sense that there are not so many others who agree, not so many others who are willing to heed the call to stop.

Stop.    Rest.    Listen.

And yet I found myself impatient with the inward.  I stopped, I rested, I listened. But there was more to hear and it wasn’t coming fast enough.  Too much to do out and about, too many other things to feel into and experience.

And so, gently, I am allowing creative energy to move up in a more active way again.  Knowing that there is more there, a lifetime there, and also that this is not my time.

Why not my time to stay inward focused and contemplative?  Because I choose? Because I follow a wave bigger than myself? Because I am weak, in the sense of undisciplined?

Yes. Yes to all of it, yes to my life, yes to change, yes to the surprises and the pain of looking for my edges and looking for my conscious evolution and looking for where I resist transformation.

As one year ends and another begins, I wish you, magnificent messy you, the paradox of the peaceful adventurer. May your soul rest in the arms of the Divine, your heart sing YES, and your inner chatter, cruel or kind, find a loving home in your Being.

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