People like drama. They love to complain about anything. After all, it’s a lot easier than going inwards. Inwards is big work. And, when we do “react”, we satisfy those trolling and prodding. They are waiting for your reaction and we end up giving our power away. Those prodding are getting their kicks off of us and we end up stoking their fire. It is well-practiced and erroneous to think that it is empowering to butt our heads against something that we don’t want.
We all know deep down that there is no separation – even if we are still nurturing little pieces of it.
The Big Bang began from a single point, which spread out into the galaxies, stars, suns, planets, meteors, comets and stardust that we know of today.
The Earth that we stand on wasn’t always separated. It was once a mass continent known as Pangaea, which collided and separated into the different pieces of land (continents, countries) that we know of today.
Even within our own bodies, we carry the 5 known elements of the Universe; those of the Earth (the soil in the foods we eat, stardust), Fire (body temperature, digestive juices), Air (gases), Water (liquids) and Ether (vital force, the inexplicable).
As uncomfortable as it may be, separation is meant to be – or it simply wouldn’t be. It is part of the richness of the human experience, even though we do not regard it as “rich” at the time. It is part of our journey to discover that separation is all but an illusion. It is finding our way back “home”, back to the whole. When we look a little closer, we can begin to see that separation is just something which presents itself as the real. But, in reality, these pieces are all of the same. Every single piece can be placed back together again – just like putting a jig-saw puzzle back together again.
Deep down, we all know that we are not separate from one another. We don’t need to focus on “separation” anymore. We don’t need to focus on the injustice nor the inequality anymore. It has been well established. Point made. We know – done and move on. And if we focus on it any more, all it does is just intensify the separation, that we are in fact trying to disassemble. That method alone makes no headway. Yet, Nature is funny. Again, fighting has its place – or it would not be. It provides the catalyst for change for those whom are watching, observing that that way alone is ineffective and that we may possibly need to try a different approach.
Most of us have heard the phrase: “Be the change”. But, I am not sure that we really know what it means and if we do know what it means, then not many of us are creating it. Creating change requires energy, effort, persistence, faith and time. Change requires the acceptance that we will make mistakes, and it asks us to be kind to ourselves and try again – after we have had a due rest.
So, become the change that you want to see. Be that space oddity that makes people turn their heads. Be that game changer that paves the way for the new norm – until Nature decides that it’s time too for that to change. If, for example, you see your fellow Black man being down trodden, perhaps instead of shouting out the injustice, offer him your hand. Walk beside him. That is positive activism. Each little bit adds up and that’s how we create new world.
Knowing me, if you’ve been following me and what I do, this is likely to be a long post. At least, that’s what I am thinking as I write… There is more that I considered including here, but in order to avoid disrupting the flow, and to avoid over-complicating things, I will focus on the main points. At some points, this has the potential to be quite triggering. In these instances, I would invite you to do some self-inquiry and/or feel free to ask for clarification or discuss. I am always open to that. This is one perspective amongst a billion – or so.
So, you know what to do. If you don’t want to hear it, feel free to X this one out. I respect that. Or, if what I talk about resonates, grab a cup of coffee or tea, and as my daughter, Lola, says from her favorite movie, “Frozen”, cosy-up and: “Scooch in”.
2020 began for me quite some time before Covid-19. I had been in preparation for what was to come for a few years prior with the work that I had been/am doing. But, for me, the intensity of 2020 came before the month of March, and this is where my lessons really came into effect.
January, or was it perhaps February, was the first time that the Earth really shook under my feet. Some of you may remember me writing about the Kundalini scandal. This is a quick re-cap for those in the know and those who aren’t. At the beginning of the year, it was revealed that the deceased founder of Kundalini yoga had engaged in, to put it mildly, some very abusive and violent behaviour. This is not something new and commonly happens in many religious and spiritual communities, as well as within the clique next door.
But, this revelation is not what unnerved me. I was not attached to Yogi Bhajan. But, I was attached to the practice. This was Buddha’s teaching in action for me. The teaching of: “attachment to anything, results in suffering”.
As things began unravelling, doubts within the Kundalini community sprouted concerning the authenticity of the practice. I spent some time holding on to the authenticity of the practice, but after a while, I began to crumble. I began to doubt myself, I began to question all the synchronicities that I had experienced; all those things that we are taught to be skeptical of. I began to question my sanity. I, therefore, began asking those nearest to me to verify my sanity and if what had ensued had indeed happened, and that it wasn’t just my mind being extremely persuasive. Sure enough, they verified. However, that wasn’t enough. And, neither was it enough for the 3HO, nor the Kundalini Research Institute to conduct an inquest into the matter. I had to do it – for myself. And, so I delved into the practice even deeper than before – but with more care this time. Care, in that I had to become the unattached observer, rather than to be sucked in and convinced by a mind that wanted to see what it wanted to see. And so, I took my time. I was honest with myself, and I came out the other side. I had verified the practice – my truth.
While I absolutely do not support the abuse carried out by Yogi Bhajan, I was still able to see that no human is perfect. I was able to see that within every human being carrying shadows, every one of us carries a light – no matter how dim it may appear. Yogi Bhajan had a purpose or he would not have been. He was a messenger who imparted us with many gifts, and for that I am extremely grateful.
Exit January/February. Enter March.
The ground just about settled under my feet and in marches Covid-19. Covid was not (and still isn’t) a ride in the park, including for someone like me, who extracts the teachings over and over again . It was/is an unsettling time and called/calls for more recalibration – repeatedly. Being an extroverted-introvert observer by nature, living in rural Canada with an incredibly fortunate low case-load, given the shakes to my nervous system a month or two previously, and in addition to my steady, daily practice, I was a little more prepared for this one. I have never been one to revere authority. A title means nothing to me. I give respect in relation to how people carry themselves -rather than a title, a role or a certificate. I have been careful, or so I thought, in avoiding placing others on pedestals – continue reading on for that one. I have always questioned things and to see whether things personally resonate for me. In short, I am no sheep. I have always been called to use my intuition and my inner wisdom. And when I do, I am rewarded. Yogi Bhajan, and my personal practice taught me to believe in myself, trust myself and to use my intuition. This gift served me into navigating Covid-19. I am respectful of the virus, and it appears to be a real threat. I do have respect for science, and it does have its place – as does something else. Simply put, there are things that do not add up for me, concerning Covid. And, I trust that.
But, Covid continues to teach me. It teaches me virtues. Covid-19 offers us what we would like to cultivate .I see two big themes here: Fear/Separation or Trust/Faith/Humanity/Compassion. I had to choose whether I was going to nurture fear and separation when someone walked closely by me. I had to accept another, learn to let go, become less judgmental and realize that I only have power over myself and my own choices when someone is not wearing a mask. I choose not to engage in a civil war amongst the people I live with. I choose to unite, rather than segregate. And, this is something I have to keep practicing in order to deepen that neurological groove within my mind.
Covid was already a lot for us all to digest. And yet, June rolls in with the devastating and extremely painful loss of a hero who awakened a movement: George Floyd. George was a lighthouse. Separation, in the form of racism and xenophobia is well-known. Yet, many of us have seen ourselves as powerless. Many of us have just “tut-tut'”ed and turned away from the discomfort. George Floyd – and his perpetrator (yes, even him) – were a huge wake-up call and people began rising, in the form of the BLM movement. If it weren’t for them, we may still be waiting for things to move.
When the BLM movement began, I knew that it wasn’t long for other disparities to emerge. And, a few months later, the heated conflict between the Native and commercial lobster fishermen, in Nova Scotia, began.
I have learnt so much amidst this heavy dispute. Firstly, I finally woke up from a fantasy – one that I did not even realize that I was engaging in. I had nurtured a romanticized view of the Native Americans. This is amusing, because a few months prior, a friend of mine, whom is Native said to me: “It’s so strange. People have this view of us that we are so spiritual. “I didn’t really want to accept what she meant until this illusion got unpacked. But, in a funny way, the Natives continued as spiritual teachers and taught me – just not in the usual fantasized fairytale way. They were rather a hard knock. Tough love.
I always had this view that Native Americans were highly evolved human beings, whom had an incredible connection and reverence for Mother Nature. Yet, here we were witnessing immense disrespect for the environment in favour of nurturing one’s ego and pride – under the guise of “rights” and “Treaties”. I felt deeply heartbroken for the disrespect being expressed towards Nature. I then realized that the Natives are no different from any other race. There’s some very disconnected, as well as some very connected people amongst all kinds of people; whether that be White, Black, Asian, Native and anyone else that I am missing out. I am not even sure if the Natives really knew what they were really asking for and I doubt that the message got received on the other end. People can get so lost in their own labyrinth. By not being so involved in the debate, and being an observer by nature as well as one of human behaviour, I believe that I was able to discern what the Natives were asking for. They were really asking for respect. They were asking for acknowledgement, and equality and unity. They wanted to be seen. They were asking for all the good things that every human being wants and deserves. However, they weren’t aware, as many of us aren’t when we get too heated – that their plight was saying the opposite. By fighting, they were nurturing separation. Their message got lost in translation.
A few times, in town, I found myself walking behind some Natives, and I caught anger rising within me. At this current time, I have only had the opportunity to recognize this feeling and haven’t had the chance to transform it into something else more empowering. But, recognition was success in itself. After some reflection, and realizing what the Natives really want, I suggested to my fisherman partner, who is more likely to be in contact with Native fishermen than myself, to rather offer the Natives kindness instead of adversity – whether that be that in the form of a wave, a smile or even a cup of coffee.
However, the Natives taught me something even bigger, yet. I realized that the Natives are/were able to manipulate the government. I am understanding more and more how powerful we actually are. If the Natives were able to pull strings like they could, surely we, as a human race could overturn the government? It is a real possibility. The thing is that in the past, we have chosen not to. After all, it takes tremendous effort and energy to cultivate personal power and band together. It has seemed easier to sit back and let another take the rein. But, it can be done. Great lesson.
At this moment in time, I see a crumbling, a dismantling, all around me – of organizations, institutions, governments, which are holding on by a shear thread. They are not as almighty as they appear.
My last take-away of 2020 – unless Life has something else in store for me, in the next few days – was something that hit even closer to home. My man quit his lobster fishing job. In the past few years, this would have unnerved me – being our only form of survival and livelihood. I would have previously asked him to persevere the disrespect in favour of a paycheck. But this time, I was unafraid and we had grown in self-respect. Let’s just dive in! We’ve got this.
So, if the message didn’t get through very clear, here’s what 2020 taught me.
It taught me to continue cultivating that trust and belief in myself.
It taught me to be self-reliant. It taught me that no-one and nothing else is the answer. I am the Answer – for me.
It taught me to be courageous and surrender. It taught me to let go. It taught me to let Life take over.
2020 isn’t over, and this may unnerve some people. 2020 is the beginning. The intense beginning. The dismantling began some time before 2020, with some crazy lead-up years. But, currently, I see us in a state of quickening. More is to come. And as one of my teachers says “It is unlikely for this to be over in a year, or two, or 5 or 10. This is something that will most likely take at least 100 years, if not more.”
We may not see the end of this process in our lifetimes, but how privileged we are to see all of this dismantling and transformation: The beginning of the Rebirth.
Well, hello there! It has been a while, hasn’t it……
Some of you may have noticed that I haven’t written for quite some time. My passions throughout my life have come and gone. As a child and into my twenties, I painted. And, then for the longest time there was a drought. No painting. No creativity and no outward expression – as such. And, then more than two years ago, I began writing. I never thought I would write. It is something that came naturally. It came naturally because it came from my heart.
And, then, that passion also disappeared. This time however, my identity wasn’t so attached to what I had been doing. You could say that the rug had been ripped out from under my feet – again. When we are attached to something, such an experience can sound like this: “I’m not a writer anymore. So, who am I?” It can produce a feeling of anxiety; the proposition of a lost identity. My response, however, this time was more of an “Oh… this again.” This break-up wasn’t so scary – if at all. These rug-pulling experiences seem to be quickening for me, especially since my work began two years ago. I am getting a little closer to understanding and experiencing the dissolution of Maya/illusion. Not only is writing not who I am, but it is also about the loosening up of attachment towards something.
While experiencing “writer’s block”, I also stopped my meditation practice. This November, I would have been practicing devotedly, steadily and daily, for two years. Oh, how my ego was attached to that idea and so proud of it! I stopped my practice this past September. Funnily enough, a few months before I stopped practicing, I wondered how long my practice would indeed last. In my ponderings, I realized that I had been under some illusion that it would last the rest of my life. Why would it have? Everything else is temporary – including this episode. This too would come to an end. Even though I was in some denial, I also knew that once my mind had presented this thought, this was the beginning of the withdrawal.
My mind says that I stopped my practice for perhaps several reasons. I could have stopped because of some chronic physical discomfort that I had been experiencing. I seemed to have developed some food sensitivities over the last few months. Another idea is that, as a family, we were going through a life transition – my daughter had started academics. The other proposition is that I was just plain exhausted. It was time to rest. Maybe I had reached another place. Whatever it was, I stopped.
And I also stopped writing. I loved sharing my messages, my insights with people. I have always loved helping people and sharing who I am with others. I wrote a lot before I became qualified as a Life Coach. It was something I gave because I wanted to. But, this world of marketing can be stifling to the soul. In order to be “successful”, I was being asked to produce on demand. This idea is not something that I abided to. I have always produced when the inspiration flows through me rather than through dictation. Yet, this idea was still presented to my mind strongly enough to stifle my passion and my soul for a while. I do what I do not to make a profit off others. I do what I do as it is my calling and my soul is fed through what I do. In addition to this and most surprisingly, I was actually getting tired of hearing myself talk. I really was. On a few occasions, I had blasts of inspiration come through me and I almost shared. But when it came to it, I really couldn’t be bothered. I knew – So what? Why bother sharing? I therefore retreated.
Back in the honeymoon-writing phase, if I had a blast of inspiration, I would have to sit down there and then and write. I felt that my soul wanted to be expressed at that exact moment and I honored that. But something cool has happened – as I write now. I still get epiphanies and realizations, but I do not have to grasp and express them right there and then. I have let go of another attachment, another illusion. I also know that this idea of me as a “writer” is a fabrication of my identity. None of this really matters, and paradoxically it also does. It doesn’t, because all of this is invented. It’s only an idea. And it also does matter because this is the current expression of my human incarnation. It is how I honour my presence here on Earth; how I honour the life that I have been given. But now, I can play with it. I can let it be. If it is there, it is there. If it is not there, it is not there. There is more space. There’s no need for attachment.
This writing, this whatever-it-may-be for you, is no biggie – and yet it is. It’s just a fleeting expression of never-ending creation. It comes, it goes, it transforms. Let it be, ride it out, let it play. Give it space. Allow yourself to breathe – and live. So whatever oncoming creativity can move more easily through you.
Our homeschooling journey began on the 21st of September, 2020. This was a day carefully chosen; a day of meaning and significance to us – the day of the Autumnal Equinox.
We are currently coming to the end of our fourth week. Homeschooling has challenged me. It has gently nudged me into finding some grounded and realistic, yet creative and awe-inspiring ways to teach my child.
I always thought that I was open-minded, but even I have walls that can be blasted through. Luckily for me, I am gifted with the love of learning, I love to expand, and I am always willing to challenge my ego – as much as this unnerves my ego. Thus far, homeschooling has encouraged me to broaden my mind; to look at things in a different way; to seek other possibilities that I had never considered before. While I do follow some curriculums, there is often room for expansion, and that is when I am called to explore outside things of the box. My creativity gets called upon which is fuelled by my inquisitive mind. Homeschooling has been incredibly enriching. It builds upon the gratitude and wonder of Life that I have been cultivating upon the last few years. With homeschooling, not only do I have the privilege of spending more time with my children, but I also get to choose what they are exposed to and what they learn – and I get a second chance to learn what I missed out on in my 41 years of my Life, thus far.
Today, I challenged a way for my daughter to be able to build a relationship with something, rather than just objectifying and looking at something as if it were unrelated to her. After watching a children’s math’s show, with the cartoon zero saying he was a “big, fat nothing”, we began looking at the the number “0”.
I realized that I had spent the large majority of my Life dismissing the number “0”, and upon examination, it carries more significance than I first realized. Another way of saying “0” is “nothing”. “Nothing” can carry both a negative or positive connotation. “Nothing” can leave us with the impression that something is meaningless and unimportant. As someone fascinated by the mind, passionate about meditation and yoga, I realized that “0” can also be regarded as a number of neutrality; the number of the meditative mind. Nothing. A Void. Empty. It is a number of incredible infinite possibilities. It is a number that is naturally – and fortunately – free from any judgement whatsoever. It is “Nothing”. In addition, the shape of the “0” can also suggest Infinity; something unending.
The Void, Emptiness, Nothingness can suggest an area of uncertainty. It can suggest an area of poverty. And, it can also suggest an area of incredible richness.
As I drove with my children in the back, I pondered upon the number “0”, and I was reminded of the lyrics from one of my favorite songs:
“Above, it isn’t bright, And below it isn’t dark. In the realm of Nothing. We return to Nothing.”
In the past few weeks, my body has been experiencing some unease. When the discomfort was strong, what did I have left to turn to? I was encouraged to let go of my attachment to my body. I was encouraged to pay attention to the subtle, yet powerful. I was encouraged to let the thoughts and the mind go. I was encouraged to rest; to realize the amount of energy it takes to uphold the nonsense that we upkeep. As I drove with my children, I allowed the pleasant, as well as the unpleasant thoughts, feelings, emotions, sensations to come and express themselves freely – without rejection nor attachment, and above all no judgement of any of it. Just letting it be. And at times, as this process developed and things were allowed to express themselves freely, a sensation of love emerged underneath of all of that – That which had been previously hidden by the minds’ heavy stories. I was experiencing the gift of Neutrality.
After I had spent some time in this state, I called back to my 5-year-old in the back seat. She is still too young to understand. Yet, I am also aware of the power of planting future seeds, and so I told her:
” Zero is the number of Nothing – and Everything. It is a number of Peace.”
A few days ago, I found out about the abandoned “Hippy houses” on the North Mountain of Nova Scotia. These had apparently been built and occupied by draft-dodgers in the 1960’s and 1970’s. I found them incredibly endearing, full of character and akin to Hobbit houses. They were down my alley. I had posted about these houses on social media and a friend immediately volunteered to come and investigate them with me.
Today, we went to see those houses. Here’s the story.
In the honest acknowledgement of my own disinterest and inaptitude in map reading, my friend generously and happily took the lead. We made our way, in our own vehicles, through a beautiful oceanic scenic route that I had never seen before. As I drove, a pleasant feeling increased in my core. What was causing this? Was it this scenic beauty? Was it the yogic mantras that I was listening to and reciting from my car stereo? Was it the synchronicities asserting and confirming themselves even more so during this drive? Was it because I was going to see something which resonated for me? Was it because I was spending time with friends? All of this in itself is a medicinal formula. But, it could be more than this. I have been cultivating something inside of me for quite some time, and it is accumulating. A spark has reawakened, and this spark tends to come and go. But, with every reappearance, the sensation is amplified. My core illuminates and it feels something like Love. I felt enlivened; Alive. Perhaps the closest description to what I felt during this drive was: Vitality.
This trip had started off very well. I knew it would be a good one.
After a 30 odd minute drive, we reached our destination. We all got out of our cars – our children and my dog, Spirit – and made our way down the trail towards the “Hippy houses”. We spent some time investigating and eventually took some respite by one of the houses. Our children played together while we chatted. All was well, until I realized that my dog, Spirit, had done one of his disappearing acts again. Within a few seconds, my generous and thoughtful new-found-homeschooling friend immediately took the initiative to look for Spirit, while I stayed at the house with the children. No sooner had she gone than a torrential thunder storm began. In the meantime, we hunkered down. My friend and Spirit had been gone for some time; we were in the eye of the storm; the thunder rumbling directly above us and lightning striking around us, and eventually I could feel myself contracting. But, within a few seconds, the contraction also became the portal into expansion. I had a choice here of what I wanted to practice. And, upon realization of the contraction, I looked up at the sky and I opened up. I expanded and embraced Trust and Faith. I knew that no matter what happened, we were loved and looked after. And I also practiced faith that all was well with my friend and Spirit and that we would see them soon.
Once again, on my drive home, I understood that this teaching was re-confirming itself. The following personal stories occur within a 5 year span.
When my daughter was 13 months old, we attended a holistic health fair. Not being a believer, but nonetheless still open-minded and intrigued, we approached a fortune teller. I asked her whether I would have another child, for which I longed for. The clairyoyant responded by telling me that I would have a son in a year. She then backed up and retracted her words. “No. You will have a son very, very soon.” Sure enough, a few weeks later, I found out that I was pregnant – with my son.
Since my daughter was a baby, I have always been pulled towards home-schooling. And, years before that, I had heard of Waldorf and I felt pulled towards that, too. During my children’s infancy, I swayed between homeschooling and French Immersion and when Covid 19 arose, I got my answer. What my Soul knew long ago was finally confirmed: homeschooling it was. As September approached, we began seeking other homeschoolers. For the majority of my life, I have always walked alone, and while I deeply honour my own path, it has been lonely at times. I often wished to be somewhere else, with like-minded people whom I resonated with. And then last summer, I made peace with where I was at – my locality and my company (or rather lack thereof). I was finally grounded. However, as the homeschooling journey ensues, I seem to have found a tribe of truly amazing, like-minded people; we understand each other. And, in addition to this, within a matter of weeks into homeschooling, a Waldorf co-operative sprang up in our area – out of the blue.
I am understanding more and more that everything is going to work out in the end. Life is incredibly clever.
So, back to today’s adventure… Eventually, my free-spirited friend did return – alone – drenched, holding a water-damaged cellphone, yet still smiling.
The storm abated and we decided to look for Spirit elsewhere. Perhaps Spirit was where we parked? We walked back up the trail and low-and-behold, Spirit was in my friends’ car! Someone had put him in the car! And he had eaten my friends pizza! And she was still smiling!
What an introduction into homeschooling. Life experience at its best!
I am reminded time and time again that we are loved and cared for, on this material plane – as well as by something well beyond here; something beyond which the mind cannot fathom. My personal experiences have suggested that we each have a destiny. And, while we do have a little choice in directing our lives, the overall plan has already been laid out. I have also had experiences of being the unconscious manifestor of my own Life. All stories that I have shared in this post illustrate the possibilities of destiny/dharma and manifestation. But these are details and fall by the way side. The nitty-gritty is that we continually fight with ourselves and our minds. But, in clarity, there is no need to fret; no need to control. Life is way more intelligent than we are. Our heads often get in the way of the Magic. We simply need to get out of our own way, get out of Life’s way and let it play out – when it is ready, and, in its own way. As I continue to practice expansion versus contraction, life becomes more and more beautiful and miraculous.
And while I misunderstood my friends driving directions, which ended up taking us through a long-winding, yet beautiful way home, I was at peace. I knew that we would get home sometime. I was letting Life flow through me. I understood that Life has my back.
And how can I acknowledge and love Life back further? Well, we will be taking my friend and her family out for that pizza and if the rice trick doesn’t work on her phone – I’ve got her covered.