Tag: healing

Crossroads….Thirty Years

Crossroads….Thirty Years

IMG_2282Thirty years ago I stepped onto a conscious path of personal development. That sounds so neat and clean. In reality, my life fell apart into an ugly, beautiful mess.

IMG_2297Thanksgiving 1985….it seems like a life-time ago when everything I knew fell apart. When I made the decision to grow into my potential everything I knew as familiar and safe fell away and I stepped off into the Void, into the Abyss. Some call it the spiritual warriors empty-handed leap into the Unknown. Whatever the label, it was scary.

IMG_2320I was 25 years old, had a 6 month old daughter who was my life, my world and the ground upon which I stood literally fell apart. It was the most difficult time of my life for I had to make the choice to grow into my potential or…not. It was terrifying. But I took the leap anyway.

IMG_2323Thirty years of hard work, pain, joy…letting go…letting go….letting go. Surrender. Every time I thought there was nothing more to surrender, something else within me would rise up that I had to release. Personal growth, clearing the personality-self, is not work for the faint of heart. Scuba diving, cave diving, traveling alone to remote places is nothing compared to facing the scary monsters within that can thwart or paralyze.

Details of the trials and challenges remain in memory but no longer haunt me. There are regrets that center around not being able to balance relationships with the intense growth taking place within and I get to practice self-forgiveness as the years unfold.

IMG_2303Once a person commits to personal growth and healing, there is no switch that can turn off what we learn. There were many, many days where I would pray to forget what I had learned so I could return to an unconscious state and just be happy….but was I really happy in ignorance? Digging deep unearthed a lot of treasures and debris.

The birth of my daughter was an awakening and she was the inspiration to dig deep and embody light and love as best I could, even if it meant being apart from her….the most difficult experience of my life repeated many times as we parted when she was with her father.

This Thanksgiving marked thirty years of stepping onto a conscious path and it found me with her, at her home in Michigan with her husband and dog child. I cannot think of a more profound place to mark this time than with her, my beautiful daughter.

IMG_2333I walked out into 23 degree pre-sunrise temperatures on the frosty grass and enjoyed the beauty of stillness and color. The pond was icy and reflected the colorful clouds creating a lovely meditation. The railroad tracks beckoned me so I walked up the hill to the crossing and watched deer cross the tracks toward the sunrise.

IMG_2330In the quiet beauty of the day, I saw myself at a crossroads. Every direction is filled with beauty and potential. The journey continues with every step as I gather the wisdom cultivated along the way….trust life, surrender thoughts and behaviors that keep love from flourishing, keep an open heart, forgive myself and others constantly, be fearless in expressing the creative impulses within, celebrate beauty.

 

Love…Fierce, Strong Love

Love…Fierce, Strong Love

_TSL3872On Saturday I was stopped at a traffic signal at a major intersection in a small town and several individuals with Bibles and signs reading: Fear God…The Wrath of God Cometh, were standing and screaming at vehicles. It was a bit intense but luckily I was listening to music…a chant invoking Love. I just kept on singing and envisioned Love coming through me and touching every one of the angry people screaming their message. It felt as if my car filled with Light as my heart remained open. I saw Light and Love touching all, no matter what they were doing or who they were. And it went beyond that moment to all humans, animals, places. Love has no boundaries. It knows no strangers. It was so amazing to feel that Love isn’t conditional…what a relief!

To quote I Corinthians 13: “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keep no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice, but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful and endures through every circumstance.”

_TSL3955As I sang and danced in my car, it wasn’t an act of defying those on the corners, screaming their message. I wanted to know what it felt like to keep my heart open without judgement and allow them to coexist peacefully. At one point, at this rather long red light, I glanced over with a smile and one of the young guys was watching me and I knew he felt it for he wasn’t screaming and his face didn’t show anger. He just stood there, open…questioning.

SimoneLipscomb (2)Love is powerful. There is nothing more powerful than Love. Love is fierce. When did we forget this? Why is it so scary?

SimoneLipscomb (1)Be Fierce….Look trouble in the eye. Let it see your courage and strength. Stand firm in yourself, grounded in love. Feel your bigness, know your truth. Face fear, chase fear. Be fierce.”*

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SimoneLipscomb copy 2

*Quote from my new book, Manatee Mindfulness. It’s a book about mindfulness filled with images of wildlife and available on my website or from me personally. Check it out! 

 

 

 

 

Divine Madness

Divine Madness

IMG_1702The sharp click of metal on metal as my cleats clipped into the pedal reverberated in the foggy air–silence broken for a moment as I pushed off, leaving the mundane, the grounded ones in whirling flight. Half bird, half coyote I spun into the pre-dawn light.

IMG_1729The drive down to the park was spent listening to one song played and repeated as I let the music and lyrics fill my mind. I rode with no soundtrack today except the lingering lyrics echoing within my mind and heart.

IMG_1743“Shining light of mercy…coming of the day. Shooting star of promise…the lantern on the way. Picture in the locket, love so near and far. Song your mother’s singing, firefly in a jar…..Coltrane in the 60’s, Blind Willie lost in time….Mahalia, like an angel, the hymns of human kind. Bouquet of forgiveness, the healing of the heart. Redemption of misfortune and the madness of the world. Madness of the world. Love of peace alighting. One moment making sense. Love crashing through the barricade, love reaching through the fence. The Christmas Eve ceasefire, wind beneath a bird. Inebriated choir and the madness of the world. Madness of the World. Madness of the World. Paint brush hittin’ canvas, the dancin’ in the rain. Flannery O’Conner, word on every page. Kindness of a stranger, Prodigal’s return. The absence of all anger and the Madness of the World….The Madness of the World. The letter from your father, the weight of every word. The love that keeps you singing; the sublime, the absurd. The ancients and the mystics, minstrel in the park. Soothers and the sayers, healing ancient scars. Those who came before us, those we’re never heard. Babies breath on my neck, madness of the world. Madness of the world….madness, oh madness, madness of the world.” Will Kimbrough from Mercyland Vol 2.

IMG_1716The first time I heard this song, tears came as my heart opened. Every time I listen the same thing happens…even listening to it on repeat. It mirrors my feelings and probably those of many of us struggling to make sense of this world.

IMG_1739Choosing to pay attention to behaviors human’s choose to practice toward each other, animals, plants, sacred places brings so much grief and sadness we can be overwhelmed. But then the fog is lit by colors of the rising sun….”Shining light of mercy…” or birds surround me as I pedal through their woods….”wind beneath a bird…..” Bursting out in laughter at the rays of light bursting through pine limbs in the fog…”coming of the day….” I realize beauty helps me rise above the sadness…”shooting star of promise…”

IMG_1705Without beauty of landscape and heart, the madness of the world would devour us. But somehow, amid the insanity of darkness we see inklings of light and they lift us above the quicksand of sadness to flight.

IMG_1743Will’s song brings tears because amid awareness of climate change and ocean acidification, social injustices and meanness, we can still find the sweetness of love and laughter. It’s a healing waltz as we dance in the schizophrenic reality of life. I think he reminds us that we can survive and even thrive in a world of madness by being mindful of beauty walking shoulder-to-shoulder with darkness.

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Check out Will Kimbrough‘s body of work. Find his song, Madness of the World, on Mercyland: Hymns for the Rest of Us, Volume 2

 

 

REvolution of Love

REvolution of Love

_TSL7676The moist, cool breeze enveloped me as I pedaled through the live oaks and pines of the woods. Goldenrods and asters, still heavy with pre-dawn dew,  nodded as gentle stirrings from the draft touched their delicate petals.

During the past few months I have started a practice of acknowledging beauty whenever I am outdoors. It’s simple. As I approach a flower, tree, body of water, land formation, animal I open my heart and mind and say thank you. Not a rote or meaningless practice but one of reverence where I make a conscious connection. I feel a conscious, return flow of appreciation…dare I say it…love. The outcome has been an increased capacity for joy.

_TSL7712While this has enhanced my life, it has brought other realizations. It feels like a revolution of love happening in my mind and heart…right there on the trail as I cycle.

In the process of my daily practice with nature, there has been an increased awareness of what human connection is intended to do for us and that has created an evolutionary awakening for me. Dare I claim spiritual evolution? An evolution of consciousness?

_TSL7177Without an easy or eloquent transition into explanation of the learning that has happened in my life I’ll jump right in: What if the purpose of a soul mate is simply to help us open and enhance the connection to our Higher Self.

When me meet someone we resonate with we feel the spark, the connection, so it’s easy to ‘fall’ for someone. But when we do fall, we give our power to them…the power to make us happy or sad, joyful, miserable depending on how they respond to what we think they should do for us. That first glimmer of recognition can easily turn into manipulative, possessive behavior…more, more, more we whine. Rather than allow them to help us open more to Spirit, Source, the Universe, we become fixated on them as the source of our happiness and joy and fail to see that they are a facilitator that helps open a pathway to the Universe…God…whatever your description is of the Creative Intelligence.

_TSL6830What would it look like to feel the connection with another human, a soul mate, who lights our life with electricity, and simply appreciate that connection as one promoting deeper awakening to our higher purpose? Without wanting ‘more.’ Without manipulating for ‘more.’ Without screaming the mantra, mine, mine, mine.

It may be that most of you, kind readers, have already figured this out but for me it felt like a major leap forward in growth. Could it be that I am becoming (gasp) wise?

Doe taken in Cades Cove in the Smoky Mountain National Park...can't get photographs while I am cycling.

Nature’s healing ways have always promoted balance in my life and lately I realize the inner message received over the past ten years to get outside and connect with nature daily wasn’t just to groove on the flowers or water or critters who might cross my path. My Higher Self has been sending that message as a true pathway to healing, to wholeness.

_TSL6631Shazam!

 

 

 

Journey of an Inch

Journey of an Inch

We chain ourselves to past trauma when we continue to tell ourselves the same story.

The past couple of weeks have been difficult. And this past week….it felt like a storm of physical, mental, and emotional chaos.

On the flight back from Bonaire I was exposed to some respiratory bug so I’ve been recovering from that while packing for a dive trip. Seems a bit silly but it’s paid for and what the heck? It may become a snorkeling trip for me. Then old emotional wounds opened up and have been knocking me around a bit. And then of course, my mind has been in ‘monkey-mind’ mode during this entire time. Difficult? It’s relative, depending on who you are, but yes…difficult, challenging, exhausting. Yep.

_TSL3955I called a friend of mine and chatted with her about it and felt better afterwards. Then I ran across information on the New Moon in Cancer and how Pluto and Uranus were at odds and it felt like a lightbulb went off over my head illuminating the darkness of the past couple of weeks. Whether you, kind reader, believe in such science or not, it caught my attention.

After looking at several sites on the internet, the following theme was consistent: “Dive deep within to uncover the hidden pearls of self-love and compassion. While the seas of change threaten to bring us under, we must find our flow and ride the currents to new shores. Pluto staring down Mars-Mercury in opposition, a deluge of all that’s been stuffed down, and that’s felt too intense, even dangerous to express….Purging of core, compressed soul contents which can feel like a devastating tsunami of feelings and raw emotion….all this with the promise that riding out the emotional tidal wave will re-vitalize because we’re reclaiming energy and dimensions of our souls. And then there’s Uranus in Aries…shocking events that potential fire us up to take leaps of faith forward. Also a time of deep truths coming to the surface for individuals and institutions.”

Yep. Can I get an amen?!

_TSL2301Exhausted, emotionally drained and sleep-deprieved while recovering from a bug has created a ripe situation for surrender. Just letting go, resting and watching it all bubble-up, unfold and move. What else could I do?

The past two nights presented a turning point with a series of dreams. Two themes were present: reconciliation and love. I dreamed of coming back together in peace and harmony with a loved one and then I dreamed of walking with friends along a river. One of my friends was a songwriter and was working on a song. I got the lyrics from his notepad (is that wrong to do in a dream?).

The moon sees me through silken light
She bathes my soul and makes me bright
I become a star when she’s done with me
She heals my soul and sets me free
The blessed moon and the deep blue sea

SimoneLipscomb (1)I greeted the morning feeling better after waking up several times during the night an jotting down the dreams. Even tired from lack of sleep, I felt stronger energetically. My subconscious is working very, very hard to heal the wounds, to make them right within myself. And it’s showing me the connection to the moon, the sea and the Cosmos, which is always very healing.

During today’s meditation I heard to relax and go with the flow, to go deep into the Silence and allow my deepest, inner silence to connect with the Silence of the Universe. I also heard to play more and take things less seriously and keep an open heart. Everything is shaking inside me and feels like it’s falling apart but I heard to simply observe it with detachment and to let go, let things fall apart. And overall, the message was one of Harmony. Listen to my heart, play, be in the silence and be soft and receptive…Joy is just around the corner.

This poem of Wendell Berry’s came up on my Facebook page this morning and it seems appropriate. It sums up the experience of the past two weeks.

SimoneLipscomb (14)A Spiritual Journey

And the world cannot be discovered by a journey of miles,
no matter how long,
but only by a spiritual journey, 
a journey of one inch,
very arduous and humbling and joyful,
by which we arrive at the ground at our feet,
and learn to be at home.

~ Wendell Berry ~