Friday, May 10, 2024

An Open Invitation

    “A student once asked the spiritual teacher Jiddu Krishnamurti what his secret to peace & contentment was. He leaned over & whispered: ‘I don’t mind what happens.’ ” Toni Bernhard

    Life is this constant invitation to a radical form of simplification, of giving away peripheral complications to get down to the essence of it and carry that essence into the world and to other people. And so there’s always something to be given away.” David Whyte, SUPERB MEANINGFUL Interview: "Everything is an Invitation"

    “Only boldness can deliver us from fear. If the risk is not taken, the meaning of life is violated.” C.G. Jung, “Symbols of Transformation”

     I realize that many habitually shut down & run as soon as they spot anything outside of their own comfort zone. BUT be bold, have courage & allow yourself to see through this, now 70yo, recovering alcoholic woman's wise, funny, deeply perceptive, loving eyes. Below, is a tiny sample from Anne Lamott's GEM of a book, “Small Victories. Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace.” Riverhead, 2014. Savor, enjoy!

    “I learned early in sobriety that there were two points of view about me – how my close friends saw me, and how I saw myself. I figured it was obvious that I was a fraud, and kind of disgusting. My friends thought I was irresistible, profoundly worthy of trust. I thought at first that one view must be wrong, and I made the most radical decision, for the time being, to believe my friends. I welcomed my lovable self back, with a small party, just the cat, me, and imaginary cups of tea, which I raised with an outstretched pinky.
    This welcoming toward myself took a big adjustment, a rebalancing of my soul. There had been so much energy thrown into performance, achievement, and disguise. I felt I had gotten a permission slip for the great field trip, to the heart of myself, in the protection of a few trusted friends.
    Frankly, I was hoping to see more white cliffs and beaches, fewer swamps and shadows, but this was real life, the nature of things, full of both wonder and rot.
    As soon as I was able, my friends encouraged me to go back to reclaim the devious, dark part of me. I invited her in: Pull up a chair at the table, hon. We’re having soup tonight.
    So our families were train wrecks; we’ve ruined the earth; kids die all the time. How do we understand something welcoming remains, sometimes hidden, that we can still trust? When all seems lost, a few friends, the view, and random last-ditch moments of grace, like Liquid Wrench, will do. Otherwise, I don’t know. We don’t exactly solve this problem, or much of anything, although one can learn to make the perfect old-fashioned, or blinis.
    I’ve discovered that offering welcome helps a lot, especially to the deeply unpleasant or weird. The offer heals you both. What works best is to target people in the community whom no one else seems to want. Voila: now welcome exists in you.”

     And David Whyte, in his POWERFUL book, “The Heart Aroused. Poetry and the Preservation of the Soul in Corporate America.” Crown Business, 2002. writes:
    The only real question is not one of winning or losing, but of experiencing life with an ever-increasing depth. … ‘Why not go down … into the lake, consciously”’ Don’t die on the shore. The stakes are very high; the stakes are your life.”

    A good book should be an axe for the frozen sea within us.” Franz Kafka 

    We naturally try everything possible to achieve a state of perfect, unwavering blissful happiness - AND to FAIL - because Nature, life's external circumstances, are simply not tailor-made to comply with each one of earth's 8 billion individual human desires! Our quest is doomed from the start when we incorrectly assume that we are not good enough, not worthy, too broken, etc AND can only be OK AFTER we have fully controlled the external environment, which is not possible.
, our
task is to re-discover our true identity, as Zen puts it, to find "our original face, before we were born." Who we truly are is compared to: the deep, still ocean, whereas who we usually assume we are are the choppy waves on the surface; the movie or TV screen, whereas who we usually assume we are are the movies seen on the screen; the blue sky, whereas who we usually assume we are are the dark clouds.
of these metaphors are skillfully explained & expanded upon by Rupert Spira in this excellent interview Should you prefer to read the transcript : 


David Whyte :


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