Use Your Words like Your life Depended on them
Saturday, December 27, 2008
For some it is incredibly difficult to be silent, no worries, relax and silence will come. Sit comfortably and watch your breath in and your breath out.
This link will lead you to a wonderful compassionate letter: http://www.deerparkmonastery.org/community/deer-park-news/press-releases/new-years-letter-from-thay-a-letter-to-all-my-spiritual-children
Monday, December 15, 2008
I sat silently for a few moments, contemplating the question. Then I said, it is the interconnectedness between people. Hmmm, is what my co-presenter said. And what is the that connectedness? It is an energy force, maybe, love? I said. That, she said, is from your head, think with your heart, go deeper. I was at a lost. The more I tried to go deeper, the more into my head I went. My head filled with many disorientating and disconnected thoughts. Then I said, I need tea. That is always my suggestion when I need to chill.
I took a deep breath and slowly let my mind slow to nothing, and then I got a clear picture of my late father. He was standing, hands behind his back, his face relaxed. His eyes looking beyond me. My father the trapper, hunter, gatherer.
He was not separate from the environment. He was nature. He was not co-existing with the environment, it was in him. His movements, thoughts, all effortlessly executed. He was in harmony with the universe because he was the universe. I got it!
In our curriculum, the process, the healing circles, are designed to uncover the layers which are preventing indigenous peoples from recognizing they are nature and one with the universe. The pedagogy reflects our intuitiveness and allows for the healing to begin. It is a long journey, after all, to be free of colonization as with indoctrination takes time.
Have I answered the question? I am not sure.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
A Children Tree
Saturday, November 15, 2008
This Zen Buddhist talk has many excellent teachings filled into one hour. What I related to the most in this talk is the interconnectedness with self and our perceived reality. Specifically how those perceptions influence how we experience the world.
Being present with Metta
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Violet was a wife of a military man, she had a daughter and four grandchildren. Her body failed her many years ago when she found out she had Parkinson. Living with Parkinson did not deter her from having a full life. She died with dignity and grace with her daughter at her bedside.
I am thankful to have spent time with her and her husband, Lee, during many of my travels to Hawaii. One year, I celebrated New Year's Eve with them staying up until the wee early hours when all that was left in the streets were ghost of dancers celebrating. She was a most gracious host, really more like family. She lovingly referred to me as her other daughter.
Recalling something a Buddhist monk said helps me deal with this loss, "we don't own people, we are given the opportunity to share life with them". At some point their journey takes them on a different path away from you. In balance, when I think about Vi, I know that I am a better person for having known her.
Sunday, November 9, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Other times it feels like I'm floating and disconnected. My thoughts flowing and never stopping. Feeling at times like I'm isolated (not in a bad way) as though I am the only person in the entire world, a solitary being. But then there are times I feel like I am briefly connected to everything, and everyone.
I know I've had a successful meditation when happiness is my world. Happiness is an illusion, but, what an illusion.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
I began reading Ajahn Brahm's book yesterday, sitting on my chair looking out at this beautiful view every now and then. The book is amazing! Ajahn Brahm's meditator's handbook is a must read for anyone interested in meditating, novice or longtime meditator. It is written in a direct and simple language with clear, easy directions.
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
If something in your past is stopping you from enjoying your present, an abuse of some kind, or bad memories, lost of someone you loved, grab a cup of tea, and watch this. You deserve to be happy!
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Did you feel that, Mom? Was it fun? Questions from my son, after some turbulence flying home from Alberta. Yup, that was fun I say lying through my teeth, gripping the armrest as though it can actually save me if the worst occurred.
Why is it I can easily accept the notion of death until life flips upside down (not literally) and spins me out of control (slight exaggeration for effect). Really, it is not difficult to acknowledge death on a cognitive level because it is a fact of life, we know that. Don't we? Yet, when faced with a real possibility (or a perceived possibility) of death like this incident, my heart beats faster, well more like a pounding jack hammer under my sweater. My mind starts filling up with inconsequential thinking like how is my kamma bank. I am acutely aware that I'm not in control, and we are at 35, 000 feet high and traveling hundreds of miles per hour above the earth.
My son, on the other hand is enjoying cloud potholes. Bring on the turbulence, the rougher the better says he. Love those butterflies, he laughs. I say, so do I, to which he replies you're lying, mom! You can't hide from a kid. It is true we accept that we are going to die, but, not really.
I surrender, and take a moment with a meditation focusing on my breath. All is good. I'm here for the ride.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
I often contemplate on the many sufferings in our world, and wonder how do we continue to accept these sufferings. World poverty, war, and disease are just an example of what humans have lived with since the beginning of time.
How can people be both good and evil? I don’t have an answer but for sure there is a possibility for goodness in everyone. Do people do evil deeds because they are afraid? I read a interview with Laura Huxley, in which she answered the question "Why is there so much unhappiness in the world?
"LH: Fear and rage. They are there all the time. The fear that is now in this country is incredible. It’s really like a contagious germ.
NS: That’s a marvelous metaphor: Fear as a contagious disease. How do you inoculate yourself against that contagion?
LH: Well the answer is always vivid awareness. This is the core of healthy psychology—learning to trace the source of experience. Is this my fear, or is it Mr. Bush’s fear? I don’t drive anymore, but in driving you can learn some tremendous lessons about how people respond to what they think they need. Sometimes before they even respond to you they attack you. If you don’t want to perpetuate that rage, you have to respond in a different way. It’s very easy of course to speak of these things, but they are very difficult to apply. Yet even if we apply them just a little bit, the world becomes a very different place."
Check it out the entire interview at http://www.hazymoon.com/Huxley/tabid/78/Default.aspx
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
I followed a link from Danny Fisher's blog, and thought it worth linking to here. It is about 18 minutes, and worth every second. This link did not work, view the you tube version above. For more information on Jill Bolte Taylor go to http://www.speakers.ca/bolte-taylor_jill.aspx
Saturday, August 30, 2008
I noticed that being present is difficult and takes practice. I begin slowly, picking one or two actions to be present. For example, making and drinking tea. When I make my tea, I am 100% present, pouring the kettle, whisking the powdered tea, holding the tea, raising the bowl, touching my lips with the rim of the bowl, swallowing the tea I smile.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Sunday, July 20, 2008
Saturday, July 12, 2008
Over the years, I would go for months without meditating, but when I resumed practice, it came back with ease. It surprised me that I never forgot my mantra, which came to me without hesitation when I called upon it. TM serves to keep my energy in balance.
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
I have some single friends who are amazing, strong, and independent. And yet when they are in a relationship they are anything but strong and independent. In as much as they want to be in a healthy relationship, their relationships tend to end, and often with heartbreak.
I am often asked for advice and I try to facilitate an opening for them to avoid the pit falls in their relationships. As an outside observer, it is easier to observe the same patterns that take them down the same path resulting in the same outcomes over and over again. However, if they are not open to listening, you can talk until you are blue in the face and it would not make a bit of difference. But sometimes...
The other day I was being the dutiful friend, listening to woes of disappointment of another friend's failed relationship. Then out of the blue, my friend asks, " is it me? am I to blame? Am I that clingy? " I immediately thought, I can't tell the truth, not when she is so miserable. But I thought, well if I don't tell her the truth, who will?
So I said, yes, it is you. It is your actions that created this out come which is the same out come as your last relationship. But I hasten to add, sometimes we pick the wrong partners, and we have to acknowledge it and move on. If there is no match, no one is at fault, but you have to be truthful to yourself and be able to access when it is not working for you. Don't try to change the other person, accept who they are and maybe they are not the person you need in your life at this juncture.
At the end of the day, you have only one life. And don't you want that life to be happy, content, and fulfilling? Know that you deserve that life and don't be afraid that yes, occasionally you do make the wrong choices, but don't beat yourself up about it. Finally, stop playing that tape over and over in your head. You know the one, the one that goes over every incident that went wrong in the relationship. What you said or did, what he said or did, etc...
Thursday, July 3, 2008
I know people who could use the help of a medicine man, more often than not it is when their diagnosis from a medical professional is not very good and usually it is an advanced cancer of some sort. However, many people both non Native and Natives alike don't feel comfortable using a traditional medicine man. Their reasons are varied, maybe it is the mysterious ways in which healing occurs makes people uncomfortable. Possibly it is the lack of education on what a medicine man does, or the proper protocol, or just the unknown which are a deterrent.
Maybe it is the difficulty of finding the best medicine man and not knowing how to properly search for one. My advice, is always do research which is started by asking the right questions. In Indian country, I recommend word of mouth. But the most important aspect is to trust your intuition, how do you feel when you speak to the Medicine Man, how do you feel in the ceremonial room? Do not disregard your feelings they are your most important asset, and if at any point you feel uncomfortable, stop the treatment.
That being said, Francis Mitchell is an amazing world renowned healer, I know and trust him. This link is a journalist's account on him http://ourstrangeplanet.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=227&Itemid=9
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Is it synchronicity when you meet someone in the most unusually fashion? Should one attach the meeting to a greater force at work that created the event which brought two souls together?
In an earlier post I wrote that things happen because they happen, and that there is no reason for it to happen other than it does. Was I wrong? Is there really a master plan at work here?
What if you met someone who under the normal course of things you would have never met, but only met because you did something out of the ordinary. Something so out of character. What if you met this person under circumstances where the odds were against the meeting. What if a series of actions by both of you were required to have the meeting occur. What if the soul you met also met souls connected to you but in a separate hemisphere, and under different circumstances.
What if this soul had an amazing light, energy, and had relevant experiences to yours. How do you explain the unexplainable, when everything that should happen, occurred, cumulating towards a wonderful meeting of souls.
It happen to me, and I am so overwhelmed by the occurrence that I am thinking maybe there is a greater force at play here. What does it mean?
Saturday, May 10, 2008
She was born in an era of no electricity, plumbing, telephones, TV and many other amenities that we now take for granted. Even when electricity and plumbing were available in our area it was years before she would take advantage of it. Life in those days was about survival. Imagine from moccasins to seeing the world from the palm of your hand on an Iphone!
My Mama is having an amazing life journey, from bush life to city dwelling, from dogsled to concord, from moccasin telegraph to emails and texting. When I feel sorry for myself, I say to myself, "Imagine what life was like for your Mama." That is usually enough for me to get over myself.
Once, she told me that she wanted to go to school but her Dad would not allow it. Although I remember when I was a child, Mama went to school briefly, she was so thrilled that she could do some rudimentary writing, particularly when she was so proud to be writing the names of her children.
|Liz & Mama|
I could not resist adding a story told by Margo;
"My story of Mama. Mama grew up in a hard life and she did the best she could. Yes. Many times I could see the stresses in her life. With so many children how would anyone not understand her. I only have a couple, and my God I get stressed, then I think I now fully understand mama. I have always had a great respect for mama.
One day long ago, I took mama, my mom, and Adeline TripdeRoche to Lac St. Anne with my old car. My car had holes on the floor, which I tried to cover with a cardboard paper. Hight 63 was not payed yet back then. I tell you each time I hit a bump puffs of dust would fill the car. The ladies sat in the back seat and they all had polyester suits on. We would stop on the way a couple of times getting out to stretch. My goodness they all would brush the dust off their suits, all the while laughing about it.
As we were getting closer to Grassland, my mom said in Dene, "Oh, not too far now we will be stopping in this place called "Greengrass". Mama then said in Dene "No, it's not called that, it's called "Gasline" and here is Mrs. TripdeRoche with her high pitched laugh practically rolling with laughter in the backseat. This was so hilarious. I couldn't stop laughing too. They were all so cute. Mama is a very strong woman and inside mama she is very loveable, and I love her."
Thank you Margo for sharing this story!
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
For example, you lose your job, you miss your bus, someone you love dies, you get caught in a snowstorm, your house burns down, you're in a car accident, etc... Recently, someone said to me, so much is going wrong in my life at the moment I must have done something really bad to deserve this. That could not be further from the truth.
Next time something unexpected happens to you, try to look at what happen without attaching any judgment to it. The deer in the picture eats my trees in the winter, and many more deer eat my flowers come summer. Things happen because they happen. It is not personal, and not because you are a bad or good person. But maybe I should protect the flowers with a fence.
You might take that statement to an extreme and say to yourself, well then it does not matter what I do. But to be sure, all action have a reaction, like if you don't pay your bills then certain things will occur. Or if you drink and drive there will be severe consequences. You should always act reasonably, and be mindful in your actions. In life there is cause and effect with every action resulting in a reaction.
Therefore, stuff can happen because you are not being present, and not being aware of your surroundings. Another example is having a car accident while talking on your cellphone or texting someone while driving. These are examples of when your own inattentiveness can cause mishaps to occur, but don't occur to you because you are not a good person. They don't happen to you because of who you are, or as part of a master life plan.
Stuff happen, and you can take that opportunity to make mindful choices. Who is in charge of your life? You are, and the only master life plan is the one you create for yourself! Be responsible and live life in the moment while being mindful of your actions.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Be still, and you never know who will grace your world. On this particular day, a fox, wondered through our yard.
The quite and stillness of living in the country is ideal for meditation. One day, my husband suggested I meditate in the gazebo which is located down by the river. I agreed, and went down to the river the next morning. As I walked down the stone steps, listening to the bird's early morning songs, feeling the breeze lightly brushing my face, I said to myself, this is going to be a great meditation.
I opened all the windows of the gazebo, found a nice comfortable place to sit, and began my meditation. I could hear the river water lapping against the shore in a gently rhythm. I was about about ten minutes into my meditation and all of a sudden I hear a loud commotion. I tried to continue my meditation, but could not. The sound was overwhelming, I got up and looked out the window, and I saw and heard about two hundred geese coming in for landing. They settled in right in front of the gazebo for the day.
I invite you to write about your meditation story.
Monday, March 17, 2008
I recently began reading A New Earth Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle. It would not have been a book I would have chosen to read, being a book which is recommended by Oprah. Believe me, I know it is a not a good excuse. To my credit, I overcame my reluctance and picked up the book.
Hubby bought it for me as a gift, I started to read it after staring at it for a few weeks. I'm half way through the book now.
I decided to google it, and found a reference to it on a blog which I now can't find. It linked to www.Oprah.com site for more information, and found that she is facilitating a ten week online course with Eckhart. I downloaded the last two podcast and I watched them. I'm finding it interesting thus far. There is certainly some wisdom, and some helpful ideas to begin conversations...
I will watch the remaining eight online lessons, and reserve my comments until I've seen them all. But I will say at this juncture, we are searching for truth, enlightenment and purpose, therefore we should be reading critically. It is always best practice to trust your gut and come to your own conclusions rather than accepting what others say at face value.
However, I do find it is immensely helpful to listen and watch the author speak about his book. Furthermore, some of the questions from participants are also very interesting and thought provoking. The whole web course is like having a study group with the entire world...
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
I have a moral dilemma.
This is the story. I recently met a friend for breakfast, having not seen him for a long time, and even longer since we sat down to visit. We updated each other on what was happening in our perspective lives. Then he suggested I visit him. But then he said, “On second thought maybe it wouldn't be fair to you because you’d be watching my wife and I argue.” I asked why? He responded that they are arguing a lot these days because she does not trust him, always accusing him of seeing another woman. I leaned towards him and asked softly, so are you? He nodded his head affirmatively. Hmmm (they knew each other when they were teenagers), and it turns out the person he is seeing is also friend of mine.
He said they met by accident and continued their friendship as though they were never apart and that lead to other things. Big surprise! My girl friend has a very turbulent and violent marriage. She was very unhappy, and was trying to get her life in balance. She was going through a serious depression when they met, again. Apparently, now she has him and he believes in her, by supporting and encouraging her to continue her studies. But they both know it can’t lead to anything else because he is not leaving his wife, and she is not leaving her husband.
My male friend and his wife also have an unhappy marriage; children are grown and out on their own.
So here is my dilemma. I know he and my friend have a deep friendship first, and they look forward to talking to each other; I also know my friend”s wife. My male friend has been married for over 25 years, and his wife was a stay at home wife. My male friend believes so people would be hurt if they knew about his affair, so they (the person he is having the affair with) that it is best if they stayed in their perspective marriages.
If I am to meet then at some function, should I act???? My girlfriend does not know I know, should I say something to her????
Monday, March 10, 2008
Monday, March 3, 2008
Saturday, March 1, 2008
If we are practicing living in the present, should we acknowledge that part of living in the present is opening the past? Or is bringing that forward really living in the past?
Why are my palms so sweaty? Because the past is knocking, knocking, and knocking on my door. It whispers "don’t worry everything is going to be alright" to this I plead, don’t open that Door!!! If you do, you'll be opening the door to more than the past.
Knock, knock, knock! Time to decide what is important, should I or should I not answer that door… but is the choice really mine to make; this is not my past that has come a knocking?
Friday, February 29, 2008
Monday, February 25, 2008
It is my humble opinion blogging is a strange pastime. To blog is to complain, to boast, to commemorate or to just make random observations about your life or life generally to no one and everyone. You post your blog, it goes into the ether that is the internet.
Will anyone read it, do you care? Most bloggers, I imagine, when they create their blog, they are doing it for themselves, a type of self-therapy or to journal and maybe to write a book.
Then someone will post a comment, suddenly the realization someone is reading that post is crystallized. Perhaps you get kinda creep out at first. But wait a second, it is expected after all, you are posting to the entire network of faceless people in cyberspace. Someone, somewhere, at some point is going to respond.
And if you are lucky you'll get a following of readers. Oh, the pressure. The pressure to be witty, creative, amazing and just fantastic. The pressure. What would you do if this were to happen to you.