Saturday, August 01, 2015

third place commons

I am awaiting a ride to Orcas at Third Place Commons in Lake Forest Park, the suburb across the street from my old building in Seattle. I used to hang out here all the time and attended countless meetings here.

My friend, Anne Stadler, all around amazing person, was standing in line at a Chinese restaurant when she heard a man behind her line talking about  buying the old strip mall that used to be what is now Third Place. He was talking about wanting to do something new and different, to use the large interior spaces that retail could no  longer fill.

Anne tuned around, said "Excuse me, I wasn't trying to eavesdrop but I heard what you just said.That is my neighborhood and I know exactly what you should do."  She went on to tell him that the community needed meeting place, a third place, not home and not the public commons. A third place.

There are a few private meeting rooms here, one is named the Stadler room. And there is a sprawling space with tables and chairs, a stage, the outer rim is counter restaurants. Folks can buy food and eat at the public space with tables and chairs. And people can and do have meetings in the big space.

Anne said "This is Seattle, it rains a lot, we need a public indoor space."

Every neighborhood should have a Third Place, a space for community tio come together in the endless permutaitons of any and all communities. Third Place.

I have been to so many eetings here, and hung out here. There is a great public library in Third Place and an awesome bookstore.

And the Stadler room, which anyone can reserve for free and hold meetings.

My ride is late. I have a great visit with my friend and her husband. They live in a stunning home with views of the whole city of SEattle, much of the Sound and a distant view of the Olympics. Blessed people who have each made a lot of money from working hard and briliantly.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

great joy slipped into my day

A mother and her three week old daughter sat in the same row with me. The mom guessed, accurately, that no one would take the empty seat between us because many people fear babies will cry on airplanes.

This angel, Austin, and her mother were in the awesome love vortex that parents and new babies enter. The young woman talked with me a lot at first but she kept being drawn back in the cocoon new nursing moms and babies live in.

Both mother and daughter were perfection, radiating life at its finest.

And I got to share it. To my right as our plane approached the freakishly hot and sunny Seattle, Mt. Rainier dazzled as it has never dazzled before. It was all glistening which, undulating its supersensible power to the indigenous of its land and the interlopers, most us white folks who still setal land from Indians.

In one direction, I felt reverence for the sacred looking at that blissful and perfect mom and child.  In the other direction, I felt reverence, as I do increasingly, for this planet, this universe, atoms, black holes, dinosaur skeletons, shamans, drumming, dancing on that mountain to remind the dancers the are alive in this gobsmcking glory.

One of the better plane rides I have taken. The young mother patiently listened to me tell her about the first plane ride Rosie and I took, to have her Christianed in my hometown. Any plane ride with
Rosie, even a short car ride, was bliss.

I had a horrible, awul, very bad day and yet my day kept insisting on shimmering, dazzling me with life and this cosmos.

Thank you goddess for most this amazing day.

a cool black angel gave me goddess' wisdom for me

Last night, I rode BART to Oakland, to hang out with a friend. Then he drove me to the airport for my 6:30 a.m. flight.

When I sat down on BART, dressed nicely, wearing a new Eileen Fisher sweater, my crystal necklace and earrings and just having blown my hair dry, so I don't think this angel thought I was homeless.

He was very handsome, well dressed and young, fortyish or lower.

As soon as I sat down, he noticed me and gestured to his heart, mouthing the words "I have message for you, you are loved, you are lovable" and as he said these things and more, he kept tapping the spot on his chest where his heart would be. He really did seem to have a message for me.

He got off before I did. He stood in the doors, a major no-no on BART, to tell me his full loving message that he said a spirit had told him to share with me. And I am finding myself believing him.

He said "I know you want to be doing your work. You will. I promise" tap tap on his heart again and then "You will meet someoe very soon who will help you. I promise."  Tap tap.

I felt like he saw my entire being, inner and outer and supersensible.

I think he was an angel.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

I love so many people . . and many love me

This small miracle astonishes me.  It shouldn't astonish me, no more than the daily miracle of a sunrise, a moonrise, trees, hummingbirds and smiling strangers.

For all its dram,drudgery and my broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world, eh?!

the fall of spirit & soul: materialistic medicine enables this

The time will come, and it may not be far off, that people will say: It is pathological for people to even think in terms of spirit and soul. ‘Sound’ people will speak of nothing but the body. It will be considered a sign of illness for anyone to arrive at the idea of any such thing as a spirit or a soul. People who think like that will be considered to be sick and — you can be quite sure of it — a medicine will be found for this. At Constantinople the spirit was made non-existent. The soul will be made non-existent with the aid of a drug. Taking a ‘sound point of view’, people will invent a vaccine to influence the organism as early as possible, preferably as soon as it is born, so that this human body never even gets the idea that there is a soul and a spirit.
The two philosophies of life will be in complete opposition. One movement will need to reflect how concepts and ideas may be developed to meet the reality of soul and spirit. The others, the heirs of modern materialism, will look for the vaccine to make the body ‘healthy’, that is, makes its constitution such that this body no longer talks of such rubbish as soul and spirit, but takes a ‘sound’ view of the forces which live in engines and in chemistry and let planets and suns arise from nebulae in the cosmos. Materialistic physicians will be asked to drive the souls out of humanity.
Source: Rudolf Steiner – GA 177 – Fall of the Spirits of Darkness – Lecture 5 – Dornach, 7th October 1917

how real men shoot wild animals

Ricky Gervais shared this, with the note that this is how real men shoot animals. Lovely thought.

each day I express my true being

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

be random be weird

"Be weird. Be random. Be who you are. Because you never know who would love the person you hide."

Don't change so people will like you, be yourself and the right people will love you. #AuthenticityIsMagnetic

for once in my life . . and low carb crap

For once in my life, I am going to pack a suitcase properly. Instead of throwing clothes and toiletries into my suitcase, helter skelter, as I think of the things I want to bring, I am going to lay everything out, fold all the clothing and pack tidily. When I get to my destination and open my suitcase, the contents won't be a jumbled, wrinkled mess.

Wisdom comes with aging?

P.s. I tucked some atkins candy in my suitcase. I have no illusions. Atkins low carb candy is full of pure crap and chemicals. There is nothing healthy but it doesn't mess much with my blood sugar and I can revisit the olden days when I could occasionally eat a candy.

Atkins is evil. They no longer limit themselves to power bar thingies. Now they sell bags of flat-out candy, packed in bite sized pieces. They are delicious. Delicious chemicals and preservatives.

I have justified my unwise Atkins purchase by just saying what the heck, eh? I'll be on a trip. I deserve some candy, low carb candy.

Monday, July 27, 2015

I've been doing this lately . . .

When I am out and about in the world, walking by other humans I do not know, I sometimes remind myself that the beings streaming all around me have lives that absorb and engage them as much as my life absorbs and engages me. Sometimes, when I am a little blue, I think of the beings all around me and I hope they are not absorbed in anything that might have them feeling as down as I am.

I've been down a lot lately.  The underlying reasons for my depression are intractable. All kinds of well meaning people tell me "you just have to let it go" or "acceptance" or "mindfulness".

I am grateful for well-intended but off-the-target advice. I do my best to receive anyone's advice, however unwelcome it may be, as a wish to extend themselves to me in a loving, caring way. And then I try to extend myself, silently, walking along as other beings stream all around me, in all directions, in loving, caring ways.

Saying nothing but silently sending love is what I try to do.  I have had enough of well meaning people tell me to just let one of my abiding losses go.

Just leave me be.  I will be done grieving when I am done.

I don't think I go around telling others how to manage their emotional lives, their work lives, their grieves, their joys. I will share what I think if my opinion is sought but I try very hard to avoid giving well meant but unsolicited advice.

I'll stop grieving when my grieving is done. In the meantime, honor my right to be let alone.

It's a constitutional right, too, not just a human one!

It is interesting to remind myself that people moving through their lives are heading towards destinations that they care about every bit as much as I care about my destinations. Well, most destinations. When my destination is another trip to the drug store, to pick up insulin, diabetes test strips or a new glucometer, I am not particularly 'engaged' on my destination. But wherever I am, whereever I might be headed, I am always engaged in my story.

And I find it soothing to remind myself all the people sworling around me are engaged in theirs. When I manage to do this, I feel a kinship with all I survey. I don't get into this lovely zone of energy enough but I remain a work in progress.

maturity is tied to forgiveness

This question of maturity, so intimately tied to forgiveness, is the subject of another of David Whyte’s short essays. He writes:
MATURITY is the ability to live fully and equally in multiple contexts; most especially, the ability, despite our grief and losses, to courageously inhabit the past the present and the future all at once. The wisdom that comes from maturity is recognized through a disciplined refusal to choose between or isolate three powerful dynamics that form human identity: what has happened, what is happening now and what is about to occur.
Immaturity is shown by making false choices: living only in the past, or only in the present, or only in the future, or even, living only two out of the three.
Maturity is not a static arrived platform, where life is viewed from a calm, untouched oasis of wisdom, but a living elemental frontier between what has happened, what is happening now and the consequences of that past and present; first imagined and then lived into the waiting future.
Maturity calls us to risk ourselves as much as immaturity, but for a bigger picture, a larger horizon; for a powerfully generous outward incarnation of our inward qualities and not for gains that make us smaller, even in the winning.
Maturity beckons also, asking us to be larger, more fluid, more elemental, less cornered, less unilateral, a living conversational intuition between the inherited story, the one we are privileged to inhabit and the one, if we are large enough and broad enough, moveable enough and even, here enough, just, astonishingly, about to occur.
excerpted from Consolations, a book by David Whyte

true source of forgiveness

David Whyte — who has also asserted that “all friendships of any length are based on a continued, mutual forgiveness” — explores the true source of forgiveness:
Strangely, forgiveness never arises from the part of us that was actually wounded. The wounded self may be the part of us incapable of forgetting, and perhaps, not actually meant to forget, as if, like the foundational dynamics of the physiological immune system our psychological defenses must remember and organize against any future attacks — after all, the identity of the one who must forgive is actually founded on the very fact of having been wounded.
Stranger still, it is that wounded, branded, un-forgetting part of us that eventually makes forgiveness an act of compassion rather than one of simple forgetting. To forgive is to assume a larger identity than the person who was first hurt, to mature and bring to fruition an identity that can put its arm, not only around the afflicted one within but also around the memories seared within us by the original blow and through a kind of psychological virtuosity, extend our understanding to one who first delivered it. Forgiveness is a skill, a way of preserving clarity, sanity and generosity in an individual life, a beautiful way of shaping the mind to a future we want for ourselves; an admittance that if forgiveness comes through understanding, and if understanding is just a matter of time and application then we might as well begin forgiving right at the beginning of any drama rather than put ourselves through the full cycle of festering, incapacitation, reluctant healing and eventual blessing.
To forgive is to put oneself in a larger gravitational field of experience than the one that first seemed to hurt us. We reimagine ourselves in the light of our maturity and we reimagine the past in the light of our new identity, we allow ourselves to be gifted by a story larger than the story that first hurt us and left us bereft.

excerpt from David Whyte's book, Consolations

the real welfare queens

good news from the doctor

Sunday, July 26, 2015

peach perfection with Rosie

Not sure how it happened but I feel weird, tested and my glucose was down to 64. The low glucose explained how I felt and the solution was easy. I had just been sitting her thinking about eating one of the two fat, perfectly ripe organic peaches I had bought yesterday. I have a thing for the Sno-Isle peach.  I try to buy small ones but this week, they were all giganatic.

So when could I eat one, I had wondered, when I limited myself to buying only two gigantic peaches? When would I be  able to eat a whole, juicy peach at its peak of perfect juiciness?

And along came my low blood sugar. I ate one, so juicy my face was covered in the juice.

And I think I'll eat the other one, in sacrifice.Gotta keep the glucose up.

I am reminded of the time, in the mid-nineties when I went to the home of a Waldorf teacher who had asked for folks in our school community to help her family unpack as they settled into their new home. Dinner was promised. I had bought a half dozen perfeclty ripened peaches from Michigan at the farmers market that Sunday. The work party was not billed as a potluck but, on my way out the door, I had grabbed my bag of perfect peaches. Perfect peaches don't keep and sharing makes perfect anything more fun.

Buzz, the male host, grilled some manly meat. The wifey teacher made a salad and there was dessert.

My preaches were a big hit, those who missed one happily groused. My daughter had gobbled one and was just about to inhale a secone one when another teacher sighed and said "Oh dear, I didn't get that last peach!"  Rosie, always my perfect child, graciously gave that teacher her peach.

I still remember that woman, who I did not really know, gasp over her pleasure over that peach.

"This is perfectly ripe. Another hour and they would be past perfection."

"Thank you Rosie for giving me the last one."

"This peach is perfection. Why are perfectly ripe peaches such gifts from the gods?"

"Oh my gosh, this is delicious."

Mixed up in the happiness my six peaches has imparted to six lucky winners, with me taking a pass to be kind, I was happy in a simple, mellow way.

It is awesome to score peaches at their moment of perfect perfection. And it is awesome to share six perfectly ripe peaches with six wonderful humans. In my Midwest, peaches are usually shipped from somewhere else, so they are picked hard and do not typically ripen while shipped. Scoring perfectly juicy peaches, with juice delightfully dripping down your chin, is not nearly as common as it is here in Northern Cali. During peach season, I can eat juicily dripping peaches daily. 

I spent my fruit carbs most often on strawberries. One strawberry growers sells strawberries that are vastly superior to any other organic berries at my market. And there are many strawberry vendors. I usually go for the 3 baskets for ten bucks deal but this week, I only bought one basket cause I'm leaving soon on a jet plane.

For no particular reason, I still remember that the peaches had been grown in Michigan. It was the first inkling I had ever had that anything in Michigan might appeal to me. Later I lived there for two years and those six perfect peaches still stand out as my best Michigan-related experience. And I didn't even eat one!

Rosie was my favorite peach eater that day.

I wonder what perfect summer bounty awaits me in Seattle and then Orcas Island?

ours is not a caravan of despair

"Come, come, whoever you are.
Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving.
It doesn't matter.
Ours is not a caravan of despair.
Come, even if you have broken
your vows a thousand times.
Come, yet again, come, come."