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The light never goes out

Although I am more of a summer person, I do love the prettiness of autumn colours;  the rich red and earthy browns everywhere.  I see and experience each season for its unique part of the wholeness of life, as well as its reminder that forms are transient and ever changing.

However this year I have been aware of a sadness in me as the season turns. I have found myself shedding a few tears as we say goodbye to bright summer days and hello to cold, dark winter evenings.

Thus I am reminded of my favourite quote ‘In the depths of winter I finally learned that there lay within me an invincible summer’.

I often use the quote symbolically, but here it is greatly relevant to me in its literal form too.

Even when the light and warmth of the Divine appears to have left us, it never really has. Even when we are lost in the clouds of illusion, we only need to see a tiny sparkle of light behind the greyness to know that we are always okay in the truest sense.

The process of awakening is perhaps straightforward for some, but for others it is full of peaks and troughs;  sudden realisations among the pain and longings and attachments that we can’t let go of. It’s all okay, all of it, even though it may feel sometimes like we’re not getting anywhere, or have outright failed in our intentions.

More often than not lately, I find myself back in the dark night, wanting something to be different, longing for some particular path that will lift me out of this experience and into the light once more.

This will never come because…I am the path. I am the light. And so are you.

It’s easy to forget this and fall back into illusion. Yes, fall (sorry, I know I’m overusing this image, but it is relevant).

It is easy to look in the wrong place, to rely on some external path or solution, or simply to rely on what our senses tell us, not what exists within our hearts and inner wisdom.

And so, the evenings draw in, yet we can be reminded that the light that we are never goes out.

 

 

 

 

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The story of my heart

I’ve never been someone who likes a lot of ‘stuff’ per se. But over the years I have accumulated a massive amount of personal bits in the way of stories, poems, diaries and books. I have loads of books that I owned and read as a child and am struggling to part with. However lately I have felt the need to ‘declutter’ my life and get rid of what is outdated or I simply don’t want or need any more. I’ve made a good start in giving some of my books to charity and throwing away a few really torn ones. What I can never part with is the stories and journals for they reflect the totality of who I am; the young lonely child, the confused and depressed adolescent, the struggling adult…all leading to who I am today. The story of my heart.

All my writing means more to me than any material stuff ever could. What this says about me and my attachment to my identity is perhaps a topic for inner exploration. For what seems to bother me, a lot, is what will become of my stories and journals when I die? This seemingly rather odd question was emoted in last night’s dream:

I was in a public library, having travelled there by coach. I carried with me a large red folder bulging with old discoloured paper upon which I’d written some of my many stories as a child. In contrast, the library was very colourful. There was a lady at a desk. I went up and showed her my folder of stories. I wanted her to take them, explaining there was no one else. Perhaps they would be useful for the library?I told her that once I left the Earth I had no close family to speak of, no one who would want my writings. No one who would read them.

I wanted the lady to care about them.  I wanted them to be useful somehow. I wanted them to mean something.

I woke up with the raw feeling of something deep and painful prodding closer to the surface.  My death has never bothered me; in some ways I even welcome it. I love the thought of freedom from current limitations, to find out for myself what it means to be out of the human realm.

But I care about my life at the same time. More than that: I care deeply about the people I have been, and never will be again. All my writing serves to reflect the person I was at the time, and for a very long time I rejected her because everyone else did. Now I care about her. I care about all of me. It saddens me to think that when the time comes that I will die, everything that I have written, the deepest outpourings of my heart, will be likely burnt or thrown away by some unfortunate person left to sort out my belongings -perhaps a member of the local council if I’m really unlucky – and gone forever.

Does this mean that none of it ever mattered?  That my life meant nothing? I hope and trust that it does not. And I think the library in my dream symbolises that. For what is a public library but the accumulation of all human knowledge and wisdom and perhaps in a more mystical sense; the Akashic records. I hope that my stories and journals and diaries, which are not good enough to ever be published in any conventional sense, will nonetheless have contributed something valuable to…what, I don’t really know. The human race. The human heart.

On a base level maybe I am simply saying I hope that my life mattered, that everything I felt, experienced, loved and dreamed mattered. Matters. Everyone wants to feel that they matter. For many this is already known and reflected in the amount of people who will miss them when their time comes. That is not true for me, but I hold onto my spiritual understanding that each of us are valuable and part of the Whole. And that none of what we are or do is ever wasted.

 

 

 

 

Holding Texas in my heart

I haven’t updated my blog much recently; I’ve been reading others, but I haven’t had much inclination to post anything myself. I don’t want to write for the sake of writing but when the need takes me. Today is one of those days.

I feel almost guilty sitting in my nice home on a hot and sunny bank holiday Monday in the UK all the while watching horrific images on my TV screen of what the people of Texas are going through right now for no other reason other than the fact they live in Texas.

I have tried to imagine my entire street,  community, town under water and the pain and devastation of that, but it is beyond my ability to imagine. However,  as a fellow human being, I do know fear and suffering.

Among the helplessness I feel at knowing there is nothing I can do, it occured to me that the one course of action that remains open to me is to open my heart and express love and compassion for all those affected.

It’s not much I know; it isn’t going to rescue people from flooded homes or help build new ones or stop the rain from falling, but it’s all I have to offer.

Texas, I feel your pain. I am hoping and praying you will all be safely rescued and you find support, shelter and love from those around you in the time to come.

 

Our tiny Earth

Tears in my eyes..

Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero […]

via Carl Sagan ~ Look at that dot — Herzzentrale

The eye of the needle

Jesus Christ was believed to have said “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”

Now I am not rich, very far from it, but perhaps Jesus was talking about richness in terms of accumiliating things; thoughts, beliefs, objects, people, and of course money.

As I grow in awareness, I realise just how much I have accumilated and how difficult it is to let go of certain things. In addition, my ego, the lower self, constantly seeks to acquire more things, particularly a new belief system, a new attachment, a new identity. Something that provides reassurance that it is ‘somebody.’

I become lost in that ‘somebody’. I am desperate for more things that will strengthen it. I look for a structure with which to construct a new identity, not realising that I am trapping myself more firmly inside it.

After a period of time, these days of far shorter duration, I realise I have become lost. I become still. I meditate and focus on God who I wanted all along but my separated self decided was in a distant place, inaccessible, hence the need for a belief system to conceptualise Him.

Through meditation, I realise I am the witness to it all. I am the Experiencer, I am connecting with the Kingdom within myself. In dropping all the things my lower self acquired I am nobody, but I have gained it All.

To see this requires a very deep concentration and a desire to surrender to the unknowable. Here, the needle provides a perfect metaphor; easy to miss, frustrating, of little interest or concern to the ego. But that little needle symbolises my all seeing eye, the path to awareness.

My dark night

Despite my spiritual awareness, there are times when the darkness descends. I imagine that is true for most people, if not all. In recent months this darkness has at times become so pervasive that creates my experience of a ‘dark night.’

During this dark night of the soul, feelings and emotions seem to possess my very being. The main ones are despair, loneliness, lack of motivation, loss of meaning, and even lack of faith in spirit. Whilst I can look back at my experience of feeling connected to Spirit and the faith, love and joy that results from that, it no longer touches the darkness. I am in an unreachable place and even begin to doubt everything I have ever experienced.

Simultaneously, I am struck by the most intense yearning of my life; a desire to find union with the Divine. My fear is that such a state is lost to me forever and as such I sometimes find myself finding a pseudo comfort in earthy matters believing that perhaps that is all the meaning there is after all. Of course, none of it ultimately satisfies, so I go back to hoping, praying, that I can reconnect somehow,  but often feeling more lost than ever.

I have learnt to ride these feelings out. I sit with them in meditation, allowing the fear, the loneliness and all the rest to be there, and invite them to show me what I need to see. I imagine a speck of light guiding me forwards, bringing me to this point in my awareness. I can’t see it, but I trust that it is there.

In moments of trust and pure surrender, I am suddenly lifted into the golden light of awareness where everything makes sense and I know it’s all fine; it always was. My dreams point to this light; they remind of me that love is the ultimate truth and that we are all connected, all One, even when that knowledge is forgotten.

 

 

 

Shining Divine light in the darkness

candle

This evening I light a candle of peace and love in the memory of those who died, were injured or otherwise traumatised by the events in London today.

I am not going to speculate on why it happened, for that is not for me to do.

I find it helpful to remind myself that the light is always stronger than the darkness, even when it seems to be very much the opposite.  And the best thing I can do for this world is not give into fear but hold onto my knowledge of Love, the Divine consciousness that gave rise to this world and is a constant presence if one can only awaken to realise it.

 

 

 

 

Everything is passing though

images

A train has long appeared in my dreams as a representation of life’s journey. I see myself sitting on many different seats, looking at many different views, holding many different emotions. Sometimes I am not on the train, but at a crossing, waiting for it to pass by. Other times I am running for the platform, praying I don’t miss it or get on the wrong one. As a child, I feared the train moving off before I could jump off behind my mother, or get on behind her; other times I tried to reach the communication cord. Even worse, sometimes I was on the railway line, about to get run over by a fast approaching locomotive. Over the years trains have taken many different forms; old-fashioned steam trains, modern trains, morphing trains, trains full of white doves, trains rusted and heavily buried under woodland.

Trains carry perfectly the notion of an evolving consciousness and its many sights and experiences over the course of a human life. Taking it further, I can understand the train symbol as a reminder that everything is passing by in its own timeframe; thoughts, emotions, people and animals we love, daily experiences. Of course,  some last much longer than others and some last for the duration of our own lifetime, for better or for worse, in accordance with our consciousness. But eventually everything slips away like images from the train window as we reach the final destination; there the journey as a human being, at least in this current form, will end.

That is no longer a depressing thought for me. In fact I find it comforting. It reminds me of the preciousness of this life and the beauty of the natural cycle. It is humbling indeed to realise that I will never see a certain person again as they existed in this life, or that this might be the last day I walk my dog. Life is a series of moments, like views out of a train window, each of them unique and precious and yet infinitely ungraspable  – the more we try to cling onto a particular view, the faster it eludes us. Eventually we realise that it is futile because we are constantly moving, evolving, that is the nature of life.

For my dad, who loved trains so much. RIP.

 

 

Spring: Joy of being

When I think of spring, I am always reminded of a beautiful dream I had a few years ago in which I was walking down a path that was covered in thick snow; literally everything around me gleamed white. Then, I looked down and to my surprise I saw one single dandelion pushing through the snowflakes like a tiny golden sun  rising up from the centre of the Earth.  The joy I felt was indescribable. You know how feelings are much more intense in dreams? I felt so much joy, hope, love and happiness all rolled into one. When I woke up my eyes were brimming with tears of joy.

I believe that through my dream I’d reached a higher level of consciousness and seen the natural joy of being. It is always there and yet it eludes most of us in our waking state because our minds filter out our experiences, removing us from living and sensing the perfect Now.  Dreams often provide the opportunity to raise our awareness of reality in all its rawness. For that, I am truly grateful.