Rumi and Crumbling

February 17, 2014

Hello! It’s been a little while!

I’ve been introspective and not feeling like making entries on this blog.

Looking out at the glistening, diamond like snow, and reading a little Rumi, brought me a little gift of personal insight. So, I thought I’d share.

“Very little grows on jagged rock.
Be ground. Be crumbled.
So wild flowers will come up
Where you are.
You have been stony for too many years.
Try something different. Surrender.”
Rumi
 

Our solid, rock-like defense system, whether jagged or smooth, helps us be “strong”. If we are strong enough we can keep things from getting to us, or breaking us apart. Familiarity is a rock too. Even when we feel we are hurt, or suffering, unhappy, lonely, the pattern of hanging on and just surviving the current emotion/drama is “safer”, for some of us, than trying something different.

Rumi reminds us to try something different. Let us take a risk and allow ourselves to be ground up ( just a little is ok, it only takes a small crack in the surface), to crumble apart just a little. Something new, and beautiful and full of hope might begin to grow—a wild flower, or….?

wild geranium

(photograph by me)
 

Sure, growing “flowers” might be unknown to us. We might have to learn something new. Face new disappointments. Solve different problems and crises. Different doesn’t mean “bad”, “wrong”, “impossible”, “not worth it”. Different means, or can mean “possibility”. We might end with a beautiful “garden”.

At this time in my life I am working consciously on allowing myself to soften, to crumble. I am ready. Some changes have come with little control from me, like my children growing up and moving away.  That was a big change that has allowed me the opportunity to open up to other changes. I have started to meditate. I do yoga twice a week. I’ve changed my diet. And I have intention. Intention of breaking out of old patterns of behaviors and expectations. I am looking and my anxieties, my fears, things that make me hesitate, my reactions, my thoughts……a long, long list.

Little pieces of me are cracking and crumbling in a good way. Sometimes it is very hard and even scary because now I am also asking other people to look at me and respond to me differently, because I am looking and them and responding to them differently. By making changes in myself, I am making changes in relationships….and that’s a pretty big risk…..what if the other person doesn’t want to change?

But I’m going for it!! I’m creeping out of old, deep ruts for health and growth. Like the title of the blog, POTENTIALITY, in me is a great potential if I can let it grow like a wildflower among the crumbled, ground up old self..

The In-Between Spaces

August 4, 2012

ECOTONES: the in-between spaces in an ecological setting.

It is a  transition area between two biomes

or different patches of the landscape,

like the space where the ocean meets the shore.

We have spaces like this too. In-between spaces, where the boundaries are blurred. It is not always clear where one emotion or thought begins and another ends. There is a symbiotic relationship. Each “part” needs the other to be balanced, but sometimes the boundaries change or are blurred making it difficult to feel we have completely moved on from one to another.

Emotions, thoughts, feelings that we might consider separate, actually coexist. There is no finite  boundary, no solid line where one begins and another ends.

For many of us this lack of clearness can be difficult. We want to know that one thing is ending, finished, and another is beginning. But it isn’t always so easy, so clearly defined.

We have pain and sorrow right along side joy and happiness. Anxiety can be cradled next to assurance. Perhaps trust is holding hands with doubt.

How do we live with dynamic boundaries where variables blur the edges? The in-between places where we are just not sure of what is going on, of how we are feeling, of where are going, or where we have been? What we may have lost? What we might have gained?

In nature these areas are sometimes turbulent, sometimes peaceful.  Waves on the shore may carry sand and plants away, eroding the shore. Other times the waves bring new sand, plants or animals to the beach. Sometimes these are “good” changes, sometimes not. There is a give and take. Sometimes the balance is quick and easy.  Other times, the compromises cause the two sides to give something up.  But in the end it is Nature’s way. Nature is life. And death. And violence. And supreme gentleness. In the ebb and flow there is all that represents life: change, uncertainty, risk, balance, loss, pain, joy, gain, happiness, sorrow, life, death, beauty, “ugliness”, fear, calm, love……without any one part, the other pieces are diminished.

Think about the synonyms for “transition”:   changeover, conversion, development, evolution, flux, growth, metamorphosis, passage,  progress, progression, realignment, shift, transformation,  turning point, upheaval.

What are the whispers from your in-between places telling you? Take some time in this space and listen to the possibilities.

Staring At The Water

July 29, 2012

“You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.”
Rabindranath Tagore

Many of us have that “distant shore” we long to walk upon. It may be a new relationship or a new job. Perhaps it is healing after illness or loss. Maybe that shore represents courage or strength. Whatever it represents, we can all relate to the struggle of how to get there from where we are now.

The symbolic body of water that ebbs and flows between us and the shore we long to set foot on, can be small or seemingly boundless. Sometimes our fear, anxiety or  lack of confidence make it seem  simply too big to navigate and cross.

And yet, if we do just stand there staring at the lapping waves, wondering how we will cross the water, we will not get anywhere. There has to be a first step.  Otherwise you will simply stay where you are.

You can wish for things, or expect things. Like a boat, or someone to come tell you there is another way, or for the water to dry up, but most likely nothing like that will come along.……you’ve got to make some kind of decision and get moving.

Start where you are. Because, that IS where you are. Take that first step and place it right on top of fear and uncertainty and then keep on going, one step at a time.

Belief in the possibility of getting to the other side of the water and the willingness to try can mean the difference between feeling like you can or feeling stuck. Even if you don’t get where you’re headed, believing you can, and working toward your goal is more powerful than you realize.

We all stand on our own personal shore, gazing at the shimmering water and wonder how the heck do we get to the other side. None of us are alone in this.  But staring, longing, dreaming, wishing, fearing, doubting, does not help us at all.

Stare at the stars. Stare at fireworks. Stare at a work of art. But please, don’t stare longingly at the shore on the other side of the water. Go there. You can do it.

Turning the Wheel

July 8, 2012

“Turn the wheel of your life. Make complete revolutions.

Celebrate every turning.

And persevere with joy.”

~ Deng Ming-Dao

I have been on vacation. To Oregon, it’s coast, and the California Redwoods. I have been watching and listening. To Nature, to people, to body language, to the voice inside of my head.

We (okay, I) miss out on so much by worrying about things that really should not be worried about.

What would it be like if we consciously turned the wheel of our life, making a complete revolution each time? Celebrating everything. Persevering with JOY!!!!!! Admittedly, “persevering” may be a key word in some situations.

JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY JOY

Could you do it? Can you do it? Can I do it? I have my doubts that I can do it . But I can give it a whirl. Because I like the thought of joy instead of fear, worry, anxiety. And I have the power to choose…or to begin to learn how to choose differently. I imagine if I keep trying I will get better at choosing joy.

Will you join me, and give it a try?