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The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Surrender Arms

Writing prompts sometimes arrive unbidden. Today’s inspiration showed up while I was on the table of my friend and chiropractor, Darin Mazepa. He is a a practitioner of a modality called Network Chiropractic. While I was lying face down, he asked me to lift both arms and allow him stand in front of me to support them. As was to be expected, I attempted to lighten his load by holding them aloft.

He laughed as he said, “Your arms are an expression of your mind and heart.”  What he meant was that my typical way of being in the world was to hold them up on my own and everyone else with them. On a physiological level, I have been working them at the gym so that my biceps and shoulders are in a condition that would do Michelle Obama proud. For most of my life, I had believed I needed to carry the literal and figurative weight of the world.  I was afraid to let people down, so I didn’t let my arms down and as such, I did what was expected of me. I took care of people, anticipating their needs before they could think to ask. In service to my co-dependent fear of abandonment, I learned how to inspire and uplift.

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I wondered what people would think if I asked them for their support. Would I be trusted?  Would I still be the go-to person?  That role is a mixed blessing, since it is a responsibility that I would sometimes like to forgo. My friends have told me that it is a gift to them to allow them to be there for me as I am for them. I am taking baby steps in that direction.

Tech challenges fall into that category too as I was having difficulty locating a file I needed, so I had to re-write the copy for spots for my radio show. Sighing through the detours and re-directs in my life.

Still God-wrestling as I woke up this morning to more shifts that call on me to engage in attitude adjustment. If I wasn’t worried about finances since a major job change, how would I be feeling about my life?  Pretty darn good, since I have loving family and friends, vibrant good health since a series of bumps in the road in that realm in the past few years, creative work that I love, travel, adventure…. much to be grateful for.

I am learning to surrender arms and embrace life fully as I breathe~

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A Lunar Legacy

I discovered this morning that a man whose life touched countless others, not merely by virtue of being shot up into outer space in Apollo 14 and land on the moon, but even more importantly, became an explorer of inner space, had died on February 4, 2016 at the age of 85. That was one day shy of the 45th anniversary of his moonwalk. Dr. Edgar Mitchell was one of a few astronauts who were outspoken about their experiences of having an epiphany; a spiritual awakening as a result of viewing the planet  from space.

In 1992, while living in South Florida,  my family and I had the opportunity to visit him in his home. My husband and I arrived earlier than anticipated and when we knocked on the door, accompanied by our five year old son, the esteemed Dr. Mitchell was vacuuming his living room floor, comfortable in Bermuda shorts. We thought he would be thrilled to meet a real live astronaut and shake his hand. Adam was more impressed with the fact that Dr. Mitchell had been a pilot, since at that time, our little guy was fascinated with planes. We lived near the Homestead Air  Force Base at the time, so he got to see them daily. The other thing that had little impact on him was that we pointed out that even astronauts had to do their own house cleaning.

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I interviewed him for the July, 1992 issue of our publication: Visions Magazine. Here are a few excerpts.

“Imagine anticipating an interview with a person who has done what a select few individuals on the entire planet have been chosen to do.On the day I interviewed Dr. Edgar Mitchell, I found myself in the presence of a man who has seen and done a lot, but is an average family man and South Florida suburban homeowner with several cute terriers. The only evidence of his lunar stroll are pictures of him in uniform on the moon, with the lunar module in the background. As impressive is his considerable collection of books ranging in subject from philosophy to psychology, from quantum physics to ecology. Edgar Mitchell is a true Renaissance Man.”

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When asked how it felt to be part of that elite group whose footsteps traversed the surface of the moon, he responded, “It was wonderful, but it was a planned career move in my case. I made the choice in 1957 when Sputnik was launched. I was a test pilot in California for the Navy.  I was 27 years old at that point. I was too young for the astronaut program; they weren’t taking people until they were 30. I set my goal on additional education, ending up with a Ph.D. from MIT. I needed additional jet time to quality, so I spent the next nine years getting the flight time, education and management experience, so while I was still in the age zone, I was selected. My choice was to become a specialist in the lunar module, because it would enhance my chances of going to the moon. It was circumstances, accompanied by a helluva lotta hard work that positioned me.”

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From the perspective of the man who gazed at our big blue marble of a planet from from space, he had this profound description, “That’s the big story and in my mind, the most powerful experience of our flight. I can’t speak for anybody but myself, but the consensus seems to be that looking at Earth from space is the overwhelming psychological issue of the entire flight. We are explorers; I particularly am an explorer. That’s what I am, that’s what I do. I try new things, see new places, understand what they are all about. We went into space as technicians. We came back as humanitarians. It was instant global consciousness to see the Earth that way. for me it happened on the way back. after the mission was completed and the heavy work was done. and there was time to be reflective. As I looked at Earth with the back drop of billions of stars and galactic clusters, which is 10 times more than you can see from Earth, I had a sense of being one with the universe, knowing that I was a part of the process, knowing that it’s an intelligent universe. Shortly after the flight, British scientist Jim Lovelock came up with the concept of Gaia; Earth as an organismic concept.”

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He expressed being proud of founding The Institute For Noetic Sciences , “which was set up to do research into the nature of consciousness. It has pursued that goal for 20 years. It’s very strong and forward looking. The idea has always been to sponsor new thought. We did work into the nature of healing. We did some of the first work in acupuncture.. We gave Carl and Stephanie Simonton their first research grant on the relationship between attitude and cancer.”

Mitchell added that they were working on the concept of causality, which he defined as “what makes things happen,” and continued, “Scientific causality means everything builds from the bottom up; from atomic structure, subatomic particles and that’s the cause of things. Theological causality is from the top down; the Will of God. So what is the nature of causality? Science has not been interested until recent years.”

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Toward the end of our time together, he sealed the conversation with thoughts that remain with me all these years later. He spoke about the famous concept espoused by fellow scientist Albert Einstein, “Almost to his dying day and only near his deathbed did Einstein accept the concept that quantum mechanics was real, saying God didn’t play dice with the universe. Turns out that God does play dice with the universe. Where this all brings us,very simply is that instead of being physical beings looking for spiritual experience, we are eternal conscious beings creating physical experience. The consciousness that is us is the consciousness that is God.

Soar high into the wild blue yonder, Starman.

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96% Trusting

Lately, my life has resembled a roller coaster ride that has had me gripping the safety bar with eyes closed as I had a few years ago when I was on the legendary California Scream in Anaheim, during twists and spins that turned me upside down in the process. The difference is, I was certain that the amusement park ride would end in a few minutes and I would be able to disembark, walk around and compose myself before getting on the next one. In my daily life, I have no clue how long it will last, how I will feel when I get off and where the next ride will ferry me. At the moment, it relates to job uncertainty.

I have had this (perhaps erroneous and dysfunctional) belief that if I did ‘the right thing, followed the rules, performed above and beyond expected standards, was a caring and loving person,’ then everything would turn out just as I wanted it to. Conversely, I had this mindset that if people lied, cheated, stole, were lazy, expected other people to cover for them, were not motivated, were mean and hurtful, then karma would do its thing.

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It bumps up against my current reality. A few years ago, I had landed a well paying, full time job in a field for which I was well qualified. I was able to use my education and experience to do creative work that I loved. I was happy being a member of a far flung team of journalists who worked and played well together. We would feed each other ideas and support each other’s endeavors. I thought it would last far longer than it did; anticipating that I would hold the position for several years at least. A year and a half later, due to budget cuts, I found myself seeking other employment. Within a few weeks, I had secured yet another lucrative writing job and picked up some side gigs as well, assured by the Universe that this one would last. Less than three months later, the same news was delivered and I found myself scrambling to fill the financial gap. Did it make a difference that the job changes had nothing to do with my competence?  A little, but the result was still the same. My confidence in my ability was not what was shaken, but rather in the seemingly random nature of the Universe. How could I count on anything?

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Today, as I was finishing a session with my friend and chiropractor, Darin Mazepa, he said he had a ‘cute’ message for me. His intuitive powers often are a bonus with his other professional talents. “You are now 96% trusting,” is what he shared. Hmmm,…. being an overachiever, I wondered how I could bump it up to 100%. It also caused me once again to consider the difference between faith, trust, belief and knowing. Still not clear how to separate them out. For me, trust is what I think of as the Nestea Plunge as I fall backward, eyes closed into the metaphorical arms of the Divine. Faith is an awareness that even if I am not sure how long the wait between leaning back and being caught, I do it anyway. Belief is a series of mental constructs that tell me that events and people are a certain way. THAT is where I get tangled up, like a kitten in a ball of yarn. If I test my beliefs, sometimes they serve me and some times they are way off the mark. I wonder if I change them, it will alter the outcome. Is it a self fulfilling prophecy that people act in certain ways because I expect them to, or events unfold as they do, because I anticipate them? Knowing is about reminding myself that I have always rebounded, regardless of circumstances.

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The question remains, “Will trusting in the Highest Good outcome bring about the desired result? Possibly. What I do know is that it will help me maintain my sanity and peace of mind in the meantime.  I am willing.

 

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The Trigger Is The Treasure

“The moment we have an expectation or require anything to make us feel whole and free we have committed it and ourselves to a form of bondage; and in our desire for freedom and liberation we have become its slave.”-Erica Taxin Bleznak

This being human carries with it myriad opportunities to test our loftiest ideals. As someone who is aware that I am a spiritual being having a human experience, I am faced daily with the challenge to stay real, to remain engaged and not withdraw into the cave of solitude.

I was speaking with a new friend over the weekend named Beth Nolan, about a time in my life not so long ago that it seemed  easier to steer clear of intimate relationships, since they were so messy and complicated. It was enough to keep up with my own quirks and needs, without entertaining those of others. I was content to let the Creative Muse be my companion and lover, since most of the time, I could take charge of our interactions. Even then, I began to realize that I was not the one in control of my creative flow and that I needed to do its bidding. Still, it isn’t a person with its own needs, desires and requirements.

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In the Fall, I came to the not so shocking conclusion that if I wanted to live in the world with other people and to have intimate relationships, I needed to be willing to muck around in my own emotional swamp and theirs as well. Did I like admitting that I have dark and scary cobweb strewn corners that I had allowed to grow dusty? Not one bit. I also knew that if I didn’t want them to become nests for spiders and who-knows-what-else, I needed to put on my big girl panties and get in there with a dust buster, so I wouldn’t eventually need a blow torch to blast though it. Still not much fun, but at least I can see the walls and floor.

Yoga teacher Erica’s wise words are also reflections of my own musings. For a long time, I have surrendered my power to others, for approval of my actions and at times, my very being. As a precocious child, I thrived on the attention lavished on me by the adults around me. I was groomed to please. In exchange for that, I received abundant love. Seems like a pretty sweet deal, huh? It was  a tender trap, since the more loving attention I received, the more fearful I was of losing it, so I kept coming up with ever more clever ways of maintaining it.

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That dynamic spilled over into my adult relationships as it had become so habitual that I need to be mindful of times when I attempt to dazzle to maintain the flow of love that I had erroneously attributed to others. There are times when I need to repeat to myself that no other person is the Source of love in my life. People come and go; sometimes unpredictably. Does knowing that make it any easier?  Nope. I do some of my best thinking in the car and it came to me that it would be so much easier if people didn’t allow their wounds to take over their lives. I have found that fear is often fueled by the belief that we are limited and can’t overcome old programming.

I saw the line, “The trigger is the treasure.” on my friend Monique Darling’s Facebook page this morning and did it ever resonate! When I think about the interactions that trigger my ‘not enough,’ fears, they fall into the categories of others distancing, disapproving or disappearing. When I consider what it is that pushes my buttons and has me questioning the very nature of my purpose here on the planet, it generally shows up in a mirror-mirror manner. Someone else reflects an aspect of myself that I don’t want to look at, but there it is, in my face. If I can focus on the treasure, I can allow it to let me shine. If I can source my own love and approval from within, it is then that I am truly free.

Previous Posts

Surrender Arms
Writing prompts sometimes arrive unbidden. Today's inspiration showed up while I was on the table of my friend and chiropractor, Darin Mazepa. He is a a practitioner of a modality called Network Chiropractic. While I was lying face down, he ...

posted 4:03:54pm Feb. 09, 2016 | read full post »

A Lunar Legacy
I discovered this morning that a man whose life touched countless others, not merely by virtue of being shot up into outer space in Apollo 14 and land on the moon, but even more importantly, became an explorer of inner space, had died on ...

posted 6:14:48pm Feb. 06, 2016 | read full post »

96% Trusting
Lately, my life has resembled a roller coaster ride that has had me gripping the safety bar with eyes closed as I had a few years ago when I was on the legendary California Scream in Anaheim, during twists and spins that turned me upside down in ...

posted 1:40:26pm Feb. 04, 2016 | read full post »

The Trigger Is The Treasure
"The moment we have an expectation or require anything to make us feel whole and free we have committed it and ourselves to a form of bondage; and in our desire for freedom and liberation we have become its slave."-Erica Taxin Bleznak This ...

posted 10:21:06am Feb. 01, 2016 | read full post »

Masterpiece and Work in Progress
When you think of the word 'masterpiece,' what comes to mind?  Likely a stroll through a museum or art gallery filled with richly hued paintings created by legendary artists such as Renoir and Matisse and marble sculpture carved by ...

posted 9:27:26am Jan. 26, 2016 | read full post »

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