Inviting in the Bliss Body

FullSizeRender

We’ve all heard of “Let it go, let it flow.” Well, this is more like, “Let it glow.” ~Maya C., Chasing Serenity

Did you realize that you’ve already experienced your Bliss Body before? Warning: I’m about to be quite blunt. If you have had an orgasm, then you know what it’s like. It is that afterglow feeling that follows the orgasm – that feeling of spinning, tingling, floating, and aliveness as if every cell is lit up like a Christmas tree. That is your Bliss Body.

Now, did you know that you don’t need to have an orgasm to experience your Bliss Body?

First, turn off the TV! I know this can be the hardest step of all. You’ve had a hard day. Right? Hint: you are not going to find your Bliss Body watching TV. After you manage to accomplish that most difficult feat, it helps to lie down so that you don’t have to hold any tension anywhere in your body and then just let go. Relax as deeply as possible. Get the breath involved by breathing long, slow, deep breaths and feel. Feel your skin, the blood flowing into the hands and feet, your heart pumping. Expand your awareness outside your physical body, or bring your attention to your inner aliveness, and become perfectly still. Quiet and still. You will find the Bliss Body in the heart of the stillpoint.IMG_0748

This heightened state of awareness is not just pleasurable. It is essential to reset the biological systems of the body right down to the DNA. You’ve heard of epigenetics. This is the state where the body, mind, and spirit get to unwind. Every day you wind the rope around the tree scores of times. How many times do you unwind it? Turning on the parasympathetic nervous system (relaxation response) like this allows endorphins to flow into the endocrine, nervous, reproductive, digestive, and circulatory systems and supply them with needed repair chemicals that clean out, replenish and revitalize cells.

Our culture is sympathetic dominant, meaning that we urgently run around stressing and impressing causing us to be out of balance, which, in turn, feeds addictive lifestyles. Then we need caffeine and sugar to get going and alcohol and sleeping pills to relax. We have been conditioned to think that our sense of adequacy comes from competing and acquiring. In the US, we have the right to pursue happiness, but “they” don’t want you to figure out that you have instant access to your Bliss Body anytime you want, anytime you are willing to drop down from thinking and doing into feeling and being.

The practice is not for the temporary relief from the symptoms of stress but a release from the rigidly held, unconscious sources of self-destructive habits and behavior patterns.      ~Yogi Amrit Desai

Feeling your Bliss Body is the antidote to stress and numbing out. So let it glow. You are worth it!

Gaining Access to the Universe

IMG_0683        

The intellect has little to do on the road to discovery. There comes a leap in consciousness, call it intuition or what you will, and the solution comes to you and you don’t know how or why.        ~Albert Einstein

Some of you may be wondering – what is the difference between praying and asking the Universe for information. When you pray, there is often the connotation that you are pleading with God for something different than what is happening now. A prayer usually starts with, “Please God, grant me this or that…”

The Serenity Prayer, famous in 12-step meetings, starts that way. “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.” That is a perfectly good prayer, but, to me, it has limitations.

The first limitation is the use of the word God. Many people, who really need help, cannot stomach 12-step meetings because of that word. Often people with addictions have given up on God long ago. Because of childhood trauma, abuse, neglect, divorce, violence, losses of various kinds, they feel abandoned by God.

Also most people have a certain image of God as perhaps an old man with white hair sitting on a cloud in Heaven. (FYI, she’s black.) I can see why Moslems don’t allow images of God. It will always just be someone’s idea of God. “God is a concept,” as John Lennon sings.

I have nothing against praying. “Help!” is one of my favorites. Maya C. makes up her own Serenity Prayer in Chasing Serenity.

       Oh, Holy one, grant me the serenity to resist defending myself against any perceived threat to my ego.

       The courage to see myself as divine and see the divine in all others as well, without exception.

       The wisdom to recognize the different between ego-mind thoughts and judgments and the Truth of my being.

While it may be useful to think about some expansive source energy that can download an improved sense of serenity, courage and wisdom or any other quality, it is limited just by the mere fact that you are repeating something that was written in the past. It is not fresh.

In meditation circles, it is common practice to ask questions as well. Inquiry is a way of deepening the experience of meditation. Often you ask a stock question that is unanswerable, such as, “Who am I?” or “What is the nature of reality?” These can be useful to help us see how our minds try to grasp at understanding, and just watch as, one by one, thoughts come and go.

Asking the Universe is different, however. First, you must check in and search your memory banks for what is currently going on with your spirit/soul/self in the present moment. What’s going on with me right now? What’s in my heart of hearts right now? You scan your body, mind, emotions, behaviors, relationships, bank accounts, etc., for what may be out of whack right now. You might be surprised by what wants to come forward. Then you allow a question to come to you as you create sacred space for the answer to be revealed. Some kind of ceremony or ritual may appeal to you. It can be as simple as lighting a candle or IMG_0761ringing a bell, for instance. Walking a labyrinth is a good way to go. These rituals help to loosen the conscious mind, so that the unconscious material can bubble up. You may recall the metaphor of the iceberg. The conscious mind is only the tip of the iceberg. There is much more material underneath the surface. This is where you allow yourself to drop into The Quantum Field of Possibility.

Now you have access. All you have to do is watch what shows up, and notice what you notice.

Asking Questions of the Universe

When you take one step toward soul, soul takes several toward you.         ~Bill Plotkin

IMG_0180

In Chasing Serenity, Maya C. asks many questions along the path. She asks questions of the mountain, of her teachers, of nature and of the Universe. Asking questions is a way to connect with your soul essence.

When I speak about asking questions of the Universe, you don’t have to be assured of getting an accurate answer. In ordinary reality, we usually ask questions of experts expecting to get an expert opinion with accurate information. What I am suggesting is more like tossing your concern out into the soup of the Great Mystery and trusting that it will get addressed. This is how it works in non-ordinary reality.

All it takes is a little faith and trust, and, oh yes, a little fairy dust can help too!

The next very important step in asking questions of the Universe is to then pause for a moment and listen. Listening is loving. Just observe and notice what you notice. Stay conscious enough to watch your unconscious unfolding with a response. Remember though that the unconscious speaks in images, memories and metaphors. The next thought you have may seem random and unrelated, but if you then ask yourself – why am I having this thought, you may start to see the connection.

There are no bad questions. Yes, you might consider offering up a more open-ended question – one that will expand your IMG_0688understanding rather than constrict it. The question doesn’t have to be specific, however.

“What’s going on with me right now?” “What’s most important for me to focus on?’ At certain times in our lives, just plain old, “Why?” can be a perfectly appropriate question. “How can I cope with this or that challenge?” is a good one. Ask even though it might seem hopeless, especially then.

Hold any desire for a good outcome lightly. Be still, my child, without expectation of a good answer, or any answer at all for that matter. “Sometimes there are no answers,” Soul might say.

I said to my soul, be still, and wait without hope. For hope would be hope for the wrong thing. ~T.S. Eliot

But then again, you just might be surprised.

Into the Realm of Spirit

When you are alert and contemplate a flower, crystal, or bird… there is an inner opening, however slight, into the realm of spirit. ~Ekhart Tolle

IMG_0685

My fears were alleviated as soon as some of my favorite people in the world started showing up for the book event. If Tammy, Sara and Donna were up for the adventure, so was I. We got right into the story using the stages of initiation and the heroine’s journey as our framework. Please feel free to have your own daydream as I describe the process.

You start off in ordinary reality trying to accept the status quo, when you hear “the call.” It may be just a whisper or it may be a brush with death. Either way, something moves you out of your comfort zone, and you find yourself on a journey that challenges you to the core.

Entering the next phase, the realm of risk and wisdom, you realize that you are going to need some help. HELP! So you start gathering your crew of allies and mentors. Some are real life teachers while others are non-physical beings. Trials, pain, suffering, and the dark night of the soul make for many restless nights. You know what the old patterns look like, but how on earth are you going to change them? Letting go is required before you can take the giant leap of faith into the abyss.

Finally you return home bringing with you what you have discovered. You now have your feet in both worlds. There is a new sense of comfort in not knowing all the answers and not having to be in control. You can let life happen without taking it personally.

What stage of the journey are you in?

We then wrote about our daydreams. Where did your mind go? What engaged or intrigued you? What images or memories came to mind? Start anywhere and then just write the next thing and the next thing.

Next we packed up for a trip to the beach. It was chilly and crowded with lots of weekenders walking the promenade. “Where are we going?” Donna asked.

“Wherever spirit guides us,” I responded. At last we found a semi-circle of stones to nestle into, and I drew a Medicine Wheel in the sand. Explaining the seven directions, we placed our offerings in the most appropriate spot. With the sound of the ocean waves pounding upon the shore, we went into a trance with only an open-ended question for the Universe as a tether. Shaking10463982_10152896394708225_1758712610686593860_n

a rattle, I managed to sprinkle some corn meal around the circle without anyone noticing. When they finally opened their eyes, I was delighted to see the look of surprise on their faces when they saw that indeed magic had taken place.

“Where did that come from?” Tammy asked about the bright white, almost glowing, ring in the sand.

“Raven Magic,” I said with a straight face.

After sharing our insights and messages from the spirit world, we headed back to Florey’s Book Co. with a renewed spring in our step.

Book Event for Chasing Serenity this Sat. May 16th at Florey’s Book Co. in Pacifica

Do you want to be the hero/heroine in your own story?

Join us for the 11060319_10152861990903558_340967570999512951_nlast book event for a while at Florey’s Book Co. this Saturday, May 16th from 10am-12noon.

Maya C. will be on hand to share what she has learned about becoming a modern day mystic and bringing the sacred into great and small difficulties of daily existence. We will gather at Florey’s Book Co., where we will set our intentions. From there we will take a short walk down the beach to build a Medicine Wheel.

Dress for beach weather and hiking.

Bring a journal for writing and an offering that represents some issue that you are currently working on for the Medicine Wheel.

Where: 2120 Palmetto Ave., Pacifica. CA 94044

When: Saturday, May 16th

10 am – 12 noon

Suggested Appreciation: $20.

RSVP: Amy Sullivan, MFT, 650-455-2145, info@amysullivanmft.com

Shifting Currents of Loving and Letting Go

          FullSizeRender(5) - Version 2 Many people that I encounter don’t really think that the situation with the whales is dire. Yes, they reason, we are experiencing seasonal fluctuations, and food sources may have changed for the whales, but gray whales are no longer on the endangered species list. Maybe there are just too many whales now.

Chief Seattle advised us to think about future generations. However, future generations will adapt. They will go on field trips to museums, which exhibit whales and learn about days of yore. There are only 4% of the redwoods remaining, but we don’t really miss them, because we don’t remember them ever being here. Besides, we can always go “visit” the redwoods anytime we like.

Sometimes I wonder what my service to the community really is for this lifetime. I am starting to think that right now my service is to whales on this second incidence of a beached whale in Pacifica. Now that we have another beached whale in our little town, it is all the more important to take heed. This one is a young female humpback whale. Scientists discovered a couple of broken vertebrae, so we might conclude that she was hit and injured perhaps by a passing ship. What else could be going on?

What is your message for us this day, humpback girl?

It was difficult for me to get into a meditative state to receive the message because of the sadness right underneath the surface. I used a tambourine to help activate my sonar. Soon I was drifting off into Dreamtime. I remembered a friend telling me that young whales stay with their mothers for ten years, which prompted me to think of mothers I know who have lost their children to miscarriage, illness, accidents or drugs. The death of a child is a particularly tough path to walk. My heart goes out to mothers (and, of course, fathers as well) who have lost a child. It’s not supposed to work that way. In a perfect world, that wouldn’t happen. You might find yourself getting angry with the powers that be. “Lookie here, God/Universe. You’ve got a hellava nerve interfering with my plans for a happy family.” Working through the grief becomes your work. Keep in mind that grieving is divine work. The death of a child is a path. Loss is an initiation into a new way of being. May your grief find a suitable avenue of expression.

“What does all of this have to do with being a modern day mystic?” you might ask.

A modern day mystic is in tune with the cycles and patterns of nature. Everything that she becomes aware of can be looked at as a sign or symbol with information from the Great Mystery.

Today I offer condolences to the mother of that young humpback whale. Fittingly it is Mother’s Day Sunday, so I will take this time to offer blessings and prayers to all mothers especially those who have lost a child.

Blessings of the shifting currents of loving and letting go.

Square Peg, Round Hole – Modern Day Mystic for Hire

I have been thinking a loIMG_6266 - Version 3t about the distressing events in Baltimore and Ferguson, and asking ~ What’s a Modern Day Mystic supposed to do with that?

Recently, President Obama talked about his campaign, My Brother’s Keeper, to help young boys of color with “best practices” such as mentoring, making sure every third grader can read, and early education programs, so that every child graduates high school with a plan for work or more schooling. This all sound lovely, but I am in favor of a completely different approach. He includes restorative justice programs too, but, by that time, it may be too late.

Education, modeled after factory work from the Industrial Era, is a cookie cutter approach. When I was in high school, we were fond of a poster of a person with his head opened up, and the education system pouring stuff into his head. We used the term “cramming” for what we did to prepare for exams. Education is about cramming as much information as possible about five subjects into the minds of young people, so they can score well on SAT tests and have a choice of colleges to attend, if they are so fortunate. Does education really address trauma and grief reaction to loss? You can’t educate healing and empowerment. Education is a hit or miss, round about way to let people know that their lives matter.

Because of my own learning disabilities growing up, I know this doesn’t work for the majority of kids. I am a right-brained person. As such, I am super creative, have a great imagination, am in touch with my feelings and get spatial relationships, but I struggle with reading, logical math and science, languages, and history. Especially history! I got tutors and took speed-reading and tried very hard to fit myself into the system. I got a Master’s degree, but it was always like trying put a square peg into a round hole.

As a Modern Day Mystic, I would go into different schools in costume, of course, and tell those kids this:

I have great news for you. Each and every one of you is a completely unique individual. There is no one else like you in the WHOLE world. Unless maybe you are a twin. We are going to take some time right now to celebrate your uniqueness. (At which time we would all do some fist pumps and whoo-whoos together.) The world needs you to own your unique, individual spirit/soul/selves in order to evolve and grow. Some of you may have learning differences, or family problems, or anger issues or hyperactivity, or depression. I was a daydreamer, and it wasn’t until long after I was out of school that I realized that is probably my greatest attribute.

How many of you have low self-esteem? (I’d wait to see how many raise their hands.) How many of you have thoughts and feelings inside that you are afraid to tell to anyone? How many of you are embarrassed to be yourself? How many of you feel like you are not good enough, and that you will never accomplish your dreams, so why bother dreaming at all?

Well, I’m here to tell you to cut that out!

You are a beautiful, intelligent, and loving beings whose greatest gift is that you are here to grace us with your presence. You are enough.

At this point I would teach them how to “Stake their Claim in the Universe.”

Everybody stand up and settle into your own uniqueness. You are who you are. Now make a fist with your hand and hold it as if you were holding a large staff. Okay. Now pound your imaginary staff on the ground three times and FEEL.

One… two… three…. Now feel the waves of energy and vibration expanding from your feet. That’s you. That’s how powerful you are. That’s what we need more of in this world… YOU!

I wonder how many schools are brave enough to have a Modern Day Mystic come to their assembly. I am available for hire.