What is a peaceful woman? When we come to it-Day 14

July 14, 2010

We, this people, on a small and lonely planet
Traveling through casual space
Past aloof stars, across the way of indifferent suns
To a destination where all signs tell us
It is possible and imperative that we learn
A brave and startling truth…

And when we come to it
To the day of peacemaking
When we release our fingers
From fists…and allow the pure air to cool our palms

When we come to it
We, this people, on this wayward, floating body
Created on this earth, of this earth
Have the power to fashion for this earth
A climate where every man and every woman
Can live freely without sanctimonious piety
Without crippling fear

When we come to it
We must confess that we are the possible
We are the miraculous, the true wonder of this world
That is when, and only when
We come to it.

Excerpted from
A Brave and Startling Truth
By Maya Angelou

Mahalo, Linda
This is your place. Is this your peace?

What is a peaceful woman? Wallowing in allowing-Day 13

July 13, 2010

God, I am relentless in my search for my truth, Obsessive in my addiction to over turn each rock, one by one. Aching at the joints from carrying the load of expectation that one day…soon, It will all be perfect and I will know myself.

In this act of seeking, nothing feels like “a good time,” let alone a peaceful evening! Crazymaking would be a more appropriate word. Where is the peace? Where is the expansiveness in the night sky?

” Just invite it in” was my friends suggestion last night up at the observatory. ” open your arms and allow it”

And I did. In fact, all that night and into today.

I figure I had done my work, I had said my prayers and it was time for me to let go of the hunt and allow the feast.

In the past, when I am able to observe this phenomonen, I have called it surrender. A letting go and an experience of momentary peace. That would all be fine except in the next moment….I would find myself grabbing on to the next thing.

In wallowing in the allowing, an ongoing flow is beginning to happen. It is a continuous moment by moment and like a spiritual pig, I am going to enjoy each moment by moment connected by an occasional snort.

Mahalo, Linda
This is your place. Is this your peace?

What is a peaceful woman? Observing-Day12

July 12, 2010

OMG the night sky is an unbelievable tasty treat. Tonight I had the pleasure of being up at the Hawaii University Observatory in the top of Haleakala for sunset and star rise. It was a surreal experience for me watching the milkyway become visible. I had not seen stars like this in such a long time. I was so glad they were still here! I was delighted by being in the presence of two eager astronomers jumping up and down at splitting a star on their telescope. It was just to much to hold back a giggle. Oh, did I mention, these were 60 year old grown men. Nothing like a little observation to bring out the peaceful kid in all of us.

Mahalo, Linda
This is your place. Is this your peace?

What is a peaceful woman? Day 7- Experiment in inspiration

July 8, 2010

I discovered that I live an inspired life. I thought I was figuring out what a peaceful life was and what showed up was an inspiration for Truth. ( notice the capital “T”) I have consistently created situations in which to become aware. I am a little bit of a freak in this respect and because I have the guts, courage, naivety, whatever you call it, I go places where most people would not even think of. That seems to be my nature. Some situations are more, shall we say, creative than others. But really, all are inspiring to me.

picture from Seattle sculpture park

When I am in pain, I look in that blackness to find out what exactly my body, mind or spirit needs in order to feel heard and/or whole. Some people look at this and think I am just creating more pain for myself. Nope, it is an experiment in inspiration. I used to run away from these dark spots on my sun with anti-depressants and emotional defenses. I do not ignore myself any longer. I find the inspiration in the investigation. It excites me to know that I can actually make a change once I am aware. I have choice. It frustrates me when I cannot make a consistent change but like all practices…that’s why they call it practice! I also get a little crazy when I find myself over identifying with the process but then I get inspired all over again with that insight and just let it go!

picture from Seattle sculpture park

If I am in joy, I am inspired to share it with others and watch people be in the energy. None of it is really me. But I find peace in knowing that no matter what, pain, joy, whatever emotion you want to play with, I will do my best to look at it and learn and then be inspired by that learning. The by-product is that there is a slight chance that I can then inspire others. Mahalo, Linda This is your place. Is this your peace?

What is a peaceful woman? Day 1-Haleakala Applause

July 1, 2010

I am peaceful this morning but am I a peaceful woman? That is the question I hope to explore for 29 days. And true to my cultural conditioning, I am already one day behind. Fortunately, I have allowed time to be in my creative flow and to catch up. You see, yesterday instead of sitting at my desk, I decided to go up to the 10,000 foot marker of the mighty volcano, Haleakala here on Maui. It felt like the right time to honor my husbands passing, three years ago. I was feeling a bit more stable in my life and my intention this year was to continue to let go of the grief and find the celebration in Keiths’ disease and death. There were so many gifts and it was time to shift my attention from the past to celebrate the present and respond to my future.

I had been doing rituals all week and this was the big one I had been waiting for. What I had not counted on was an additional emotional opportunity to let go of a new relationship with a man whom I had since fallen in love with. His e-mail arrived on the exact day of my husbands death. (Timing is everything and so is social media!). So this was yet another opportunity to be aware, awake and gentle with all the anger, loss, grief, fear, survival…you name it, that slippery slope of emotions that was once again erupting.

It took me an hour to drive the hill and I played all my husbands original music along the way. The tears, sobs, (OK, let’s be real…HOWLS) were so very cleansing and my usual disemboweling ache gave way to comfort. A more comfortable way of feeling pain could be called peace, I suppose. On the top of the volcano, I found my spot off the beaten path ( don’t tell the authorities) and set up for the next 4 hours ’till sunset. I listened to some meditation audio and music to allow my freaked out chatter a little chill time before I went into meditation. My mind likes to preview before the show.

As I settled in, I began to visualize all my past memories with Keith. One by one, I allowed them into my consciousness, invited a breath and allowed the experience into my body. I then directed my thoughts and to that exact body location. I took another breath and mentally surrendered. I didn’t really know what that meant but It started in my mind and then somehow, rolled on down and I just let go. I just sighed, cried, smiled, responded. I imagined the picture dissolving into a warm bath of relaxation and the pain in my body subsided even more. Where the dark knot of grief had it’s grip, there slowly appeared some light and peace. I was beginning to feel more whole. There was a different feeling of integration and the energies of the mountain were generously assisting.

I dug my bare feet deeper into the rocks of the mountain and assembled a small altar from some things left over from our past life together. I then sprinkled Keiths’ ashes around the crystal that I had placed in the middle. I love altars and this was a beauty by my standards.

I settled back in. Some of the emerging images were easier to view than others and then out of nowhere, I got a bonus feature of my newest relationship dissolving into forgiveness and sweetness. How did THAT happen? I asked the Haleakala guides. They just smiled and their words said ” be careful what you ask for, dear one”. I was really enjoying my quiet with the wind and my body continued to relax.

The upper balcony of the volcanic amphitheater was beginning to stir with voices. I allowed my mind to include this drone to further help me deepen into even darker places. I lost track of time. I was no longer slipping, I had found a solid place for my heart to reside. And then I heard clapping. I was startled. Had I fallen asleep? I opened my eyes and the sun was just skidding behind the clouds. The crowd behind me was applauding and I found myself crying with an indescribable feeling of peace and joy. My tears were an expression of contentment mixed with the irreverence and humor of the Superbowl cheer. this is one of God’s most wondrous events afterall! I did it, we did it, they did it. It happened and I had a crowd of cheerleaders to reflect that back to me. I quickly gathered my things and climbed back up to the parking lot. I drove very slowly down the hill, basking in the last remaining drops of sunlight and was in wonderment at the ability to actually turn my pain into a joyous celebration with a little help from the cheering section and Haleakala energies.

Mahalo, Linda
This is your place. Is this your peace?

Change for the Sense of it-Senssoma part 1

June 26, 2010

Why would I possibly resist JOY?  Because it is too easy, is the first thing out of my brain. And not wanting to continue down that drain, I decided to book my first session with Rachel Flower, creator and Curiosity Catalyst of Senssoma.

I had just a bit of awareness homework to complete before I got started and just that process took me to a new level of the phrase, “this is your movie and you are the actor”  I decided to make it my musical and I was singing. In the process ( Rachel is from England and pronounces it Prooooosess) of collecting objects that represented the 6 senses plus one, I found that I could walk among the sugar cane fields and sing without caring or being embarrassed!  It reminded me of that hunk of an actor in the musical, Carousel, who sang “Oh what a beautiful morning” remember that?  There’s the joy! More to come on that one, i am off to Baby Beach for another song into the waves. I will let you know what happens in part 2.

Altitude Change

June 26, 2010

After a miraculous moving extravaganza and the friendships and kindness of everyone I came into contact with, I have landed in Haiku on Maui. Marin is now my second home. I live in Maui and I have a home in Marin. That is what I tell people here. I like it. It fits and it is actually the truth. I want to extend a thank you to everyone who helped me make this transition. I am so grateful and in disbelief, really. Upon arriving to meet my 13 small UPS boxes, I immediately jumped into teaching a retreat for The Peaceful Woman and had the opportunity to stay at the retreat center for the full week. Although a TON-O-FUN,  it  took me to exhaustion. Somewhere  between the two extremes I found a relatedness with women of the island  like I never would have imagined.

I wanted to dwell in that land for a while but of course, by the second week in May, I started up with my three classes at the Studio Maui as I continued to unpack and get things in order at my home with two new house mates.  It is interesting to change a life and make it all ok when in fact there are unavoidable stresses.

Just for the record, I have not lived with anyone since college. That is another blog in and of itself but my two house mates, Maridel and Karren Luise are amazing women. I love them very much . There is nothing we cannot talk about or get through and make happen. I have been blessed with two very conscious individuals who love me and can take care of themselves as well. Yes, you guessed it. Just one definition of Peaceful Women.

The process of setting up an office and finding the essential grocery store, post office and bank was interrupted by several birthday celebrations, including my own.  I am quite in awe at the change that has occurred in one short year before my 50th birthday. In addition to the celebrations and new friends, I was able to participate in an amazing trek up Haleakela Volcano to invite and uscher in  the healing energies of the island. I still do not know what to make of it but I helped create an alter at the top and sprinkled some of my husband, Keith’s ashes on it.   See the picture has a little iridescence to it. A glow of sorts. I could feel him there for sure. We also had an amazing house warming blessing complete with live performances from Bentley Kallaway and Keith Ranney. With all the celebrations, I was feeling a bit on the high side. A bit of the euphoria when a dream becomes realized and the reality of life has not entered the picture yet. I was High on Change. The energies of  Haleakeal stayed with me in undescribable ways and I truely felt like I had experienced some sort of initiation. I guess It was a good way to feel welcomed on an island as a white girl from the Midwest. I should just make a tee shirt that says that.  I wouldn’t even have to open my mouth and people would understand a few things about that.

The clases at the studio are finding their rhythm and I am enjoying teaching pure Viniyoga.  June tends to be a slow month here on the island and it is giving me an opportunity to gain some  momentum for fall. The slowing down continues to heal me and the next mile stone will be the celebration of the third deathaversary of my husbands departure from this plane. I have a few things planned and a silent two days is one of them on top of Haleakala.  I will let you know how the altitude alters me once again.

A change of Heart

June 26, 2010

My heart has softened. It is now one month back on the island and I am still a bit dazed and somewhat confused.  The clarity is beginning to appear behind the clouds along with the many rainbows I see here all the time. It is astounding.  My life on this island is starting to take on a bit or routine. I say YES! to that right now. Of course, that is until I shake it up again. But I am here for a while.  I see the value in staying put with a few trips here and there to keep it all real. My heart has changed and I feel the need to slow down a bi, reflect on the last three years since Keith’s passing and dive deeply into my practice. .

I have started teaching two yoga classes and one Tai Chi Chih class at The Studio Maui here in Haiku. I have also started teaching Yoga for The Peaceful Woman which I am pretty excited about. The students are amazing,  like most students I run into and I have had a change of heart. I have become softer the quieter I get. That is one of my intentions of being on this island of fire and transformation. I am finding the gentle side of the volcano and Yoga for The Peaceful Woman is a reflection of that.  It is much deserved and long overdue. For me to teach a restorative class is a beautiful thing.

More later about some of the highlights that have led up to this change of heart.

Protected: Riding the split personality of change

April 15, 2010

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Protected: Change a life-The underbelly of the unaware

March 22, 2010

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