The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Wonderful

 

Music feeds my soul, as I have said here many times. It’s a delicious combination of rhythm and rhyme, harmony and lyrics that reach inner nooks and crannies and send my soul soaring. One of the best places to listen is in my Jeep as the accoustics seem perfect to allow me to sing along with my enthusiastic, if not formally trained, voice. My favorite radio station is Philly based University of Pennsylvania’s WXPN 88.5 fm. It is where I have been introduced to the musicians who are now receiving main stream acceptance. One group is My Morning Jacket, whose song called Wonderful The Way I Feel is among my those that delight the ears of my heart. Yesterday morning, on the drive into work, I found myself immersed in the lyrics and endeavoring to figure out what they meant. The soothing voice of front man Jim James (who jokingly calls himself Yim Yames:) cascaded along the ceiling and walls of my magic machine as it tooled along.

It matters to me
Took a long time to get here
If it would have been easy
I would not have cared

Like a tropical forest
Like a cop on the beat
When all is order
You get lost in the heat

I feel so wonderful, wonderful, wonderful the way I feel
I feel so wonderful, wonderful, wonderful the way I feel

Doesn’t matter to me
I could take it or leave it
I could learn from way back when
And still live right now

With the sun on my shoulder
And the wind in my back
I will never grow older
At least not in my mind

I feel so wonderful, wonderful, wonderful the way I feel
I feel so wonderful, wonderful, wonderful the way I feel
So wonderful, wonderful the way I feel
I feel so wonderful, wonderful, wonderful the way I feel

I’m going where there ain’t no fear
I’m going where the spirit is near
I’m going where the living is easy
And the people are kind
A new state of mind

I’m going where there ain’t no police
I’m going where there ain’t no disease
I’m going where there ain’t no need
To escape from what is
Only spirits at ease

I  meandered back and forth between thinking that it was a life after death song and a treatise on living completely in the here and now wonder of each precious moment. I imagine that I am called upon each day to experience that new state of mind in which I can be at peace, regardless of what is happening around me. Today was just like every other day in which I awoke in my comfy bed, peeling back new powder blue flannel sheets that I had gotten to usher in the new year. I prepared for a typical day of writing for an hour or so and then heading to my full time job as a social worker, serving people who sometimes struggle with believing these lyrics. Many of them are convinced that people are unkind and that a new state of mind is a near impossibility, given their histories. My role, among many, is to show them that indeed another way does exist. I have witnessed many people in my life who have been able to reframe their experiences, regardless of how painful they may have been. After work, came grocery shopping, dinner and then to the gym for my ‘playout’. On the surface, nothing exceptional and yet, as I wind down my day and prepare for restorative sleep, I can, with all certainty, declare that I feel wonderful.

 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFyelklEanQ   Wonderful The Way I Feel by My Morning Jacket

www.xpn.org

Wake Up Call

 

Each morning before lifting my head from the pillow and crawling out from beneath cozy covers, these words run through my mind:

“Modeh Ani Lefanecha Melech Chai Vekayam Shehechezarta Be Nishmati Bechemla; Rabba Emunatecha.

I offer thanks to You, living and eternal King, for You have mercifully restored my soul within me; Your faithfulness is great.”

It is a Hebrew prayer called Modeh Ani and I have been saying it for much of my life. I grew up in a spiritually rich Jewish home in which we practiced what I think of as ‘hands on Judaism’, not just synagogue on Friday nights, but lighting the candles with my parents before services. Not just High Holiday attendance, but living the concepts in our home and community.  My parents role modeled volunteerism that I follow to this day, as does my son. Although my father worked long hours, when he was called to participate in a minyan ( a group of 10 needed to say certain prayers, such as when sitting shiva after someone has died), he was there without hesitation, because he knew it was a mitzvah (good deed) and because he knew he was providing comfort and support to fellow congregants. I remember when people showed up for me in that role when my husband and both my parents passed.

Each night before bed, my sister Jan and I recited the signature prayer called The Shema

Sh’ma Yis’ra’eil Adonai Eloheinu Adonai echad.
Hear,
Israel, the Lord is our God, the Lord is One.
Barukh sheim k’vod malkhuto l’olam
va’ed
.
Blessed be the Name of His glorious kingdom for ever and ever.

 

At an early age, we knew the comfort of being tucked in to these words. Our parents would say them with us and even on nights when they would go out, any babysitter who watched us would hear our prayers. Those who were Jewish would say them with us, those who weren’t would simply listen. These were a foundation for the ways in which I live now and they link me one generation to the next. They also help my parents feel sublimely present.

http://youtu.be/Hq6hYBn_UYs Modeh Ani

All Eyes On You

 

On my way into work on a chilly late December morning, I stopped at Wawa for my caffeine of choice, a steamy cup of chai. As I was walking out the door, my eyes beheld an even sweeter treat. It was a blue Cooper Mini with eye-popping embellishments…lengthy eyelashes that would do Maybelline proud.  Not only that, but on the dashboard was my favorite Friendly Ghost…Caspar himself, raising his arms as if conjuring up some mischief and beaming light. Of course, I couldn’t resist stopping to speak with the driver, a lovely woman who sat beside her aunt, waiting for her children to come streaming out of the store, tumbling into their magical car.

Her laughter mixed with mine as I recognized a kindred spirit; clearly someone unafraid to live out loud, to color outside the lines, to think out side the box. I am blessed to have many friends who are in that category; juicy living artists, musicians, photographers, authors, teachers, film-makers and healers. In my friend Caran Kalish’s office that I visited for the first time on Christmas Day, I beheld a way cool design on two of her walls…colorful hearts on which people could use chalk and write inspiring messages…so, naturally I did. I may get some of the paint she used and create my own chalkboard on one of my walls.  My friends Phil and Janet have all kinds of creative embellishments in their home that include found objects, a series of rubber duckies in the bathroom, mobiles, messages painted over their bed so that they can be inspired by reading whilst lying down. My own house is an eclectic blend of faeries, angels, Tibetan prayer flags, Native American art, dreamcatchers, medicine shields, Judaica,  yogic art, a rainbow colored windsock brought home from Key West, white twinkle lights, a painted pink spiral staircase with Tinkerbell’s pixie dust from Disney World embedded in it.  These decorative touches inspire me, as I am ready, willing and able to dance my dreams to life…like Cindy Lauper..a vivid cool aid hair-colored girl who just wants to have fun.

New Years Revolution

 

As the clocked turned from 11:59, to 12:00, people all over the planet acknowledged a turning in their lives. Although I believe that time is a mental construct, I too honor transitional periods.  This year, in particular, is infused with meaning for folks, as for years earlier, the media and fear mongers have foretold (based on the misinterpreted teachings of the Mayan calendar) of apocalyptic happenings in 2012.  Yes, earth changes are occurring, and true that people are facing greater financial challenges than before. Seems to me that these are loud and powerfully insistent calls for more love, more healing, more dedicated endeavoring for each of us to step up and fulfill our purpose. First, we need to recognize what that is.

Do you wonder what yours is?  I have long known that mine is to be a channel for love and healing as a communicator in written and spoken word. How was I sure? All I can tell you is that I feel most fully alive when I am doing those things. It is ‘what I was born to do.’ I don’t get stage fright; ok, the occasional ‘flutterby’s’ in the stomach…but mostly very much at home when speaking. It is  like being an athlete in the ‘zone’ where nothing else exists but you and the game, sport or race. In my case, nothing else exists but me and this page, or me and the audience. What lights you up from the inside and turns you into a human sparkler? What can’t you just wait to do the moment your eyes open (besides using the potty:) ? What feels more like play than work?

One thing many people do as they enter into a New Year is create resolutions to keep them on track. My friend Joan Schaublin wrote this recently, that speaks volumes about the ways we attempt to make ourselves feel flawed as motivation to change:

“We spend the 1st of January thinking over the past and making promises to fix all the things about ourselves we think are flawed, to get all the things we think we must have in order to be happy, and to fill our empty spaces. Maybe this year, for a change, we can make a list of all the things that are right and good about ourselves, be grateful for what we already have and only promise to live authentically so the empty spaces fill themselves.

What if, instead, we set intention? I do that every day, even before my feet touch the floor, opening the door to “amazing people and extraordinary experiences.”  I ask to be mindful and heart-full that in every moment I have a choice as to how I perceive and respond to any situation that comes my way. I have become the ‘queen of reframe’, as things that would have knocked me on my butt, are now an opportunity to ask, not “why is this happening?”, but “what can I learn from it? How can I use it to serve me and others, and how can I turn it into grist for the mill for my writing and teaching? ” The answers are always there waiting for me to scoop them up. It literally feels like unwrapping gifts that are constantly being layed at my feet. Some of them show up as “precious unexpected surprises”, according to another friend named Denise Moser. Others arrive as if I placed a specific order with the Celestial Shipping Department and were sent Special Delivery. All are welcome.

So, my intentions for 2012 and beyond…

Being in integrity, saying what I mean and meaning what I say. Living so that at the end of each day, I can face the woman in the mirror, head held high.

Putting my heart and soul into all that I do.

Looking any fears/hesitation/limiting thoughts square in the face, ask what it is here to teach me and then blowing them away like so much dandelion fluff~

Listening to and following Divine Guidance, since it has never steered me wrong.

Letting go of how I alone think things should go and embracing the partnership that I have with Spirit (see above:)

Speaking my truth, with love and compassion, even if other folks may not want to hear it.

Taking care of myself body, mind and spirit.

Emotional bungee jumping…taking risks that I might have feared embracing.

Honoring my gifts to the world.

Open heartedly living each day.

Being a greater force for good in the world.

Letting my creativity flow unabated.

Asking for what I desire and opening to receive it.

Listening with the ears of the heart and being fully present to the people in my life.

Being a miracle manna-fester.

What are YOUR New Years Revolutions?

First Day of My Life by Bright Eyes http://youtu.be/o5rhhQbyYV0

 

Previous Posts

The Only Life You Can Save
One of my favorite wise woman poets is Mary Oliver whose words touch my heart in ways that few others can; as if they could have come through me as well; so personal they are. Today, while visiting my former place of employment, one of my co-workers pulled out an anthology consisting of the works of

posted 8:40:05pm Nov. 21, 2014 | read full post »

Abby's Light
  When a light comes into the world, we hope that it will last indefinitely, knowing that eventually it will fade. When a child is born, a parent doesn't expect that his or her light will diminish before it has a chance to fully express itself...and yet, sadly it happens.  Abby Schumer was

posted 8:32:41am Nov. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Light Filled Holiday
This morning, I saw a meme on a friend's Facebook page that expressed: LIKE if you plan to be politically incorrect by saying "Merry Christmas" this holiday season. My response to her was: "If I know what people celebrate, I will greet them with their preferred sentiment. I have friends of many diff

posted 9:01:36am Nov. 18, 2014 | read full post »

My Mother's Daughter
Yesterday, I did a mini-workshop at Awaken Healing Expo and offered BLISS Coaching; both designed to empower people to live the lives of their dreams and desires. Already pretty tired from early awakening myself that morning, before the sun was even peeking out from its own cloud cover, my eyes were

posted 6:43:48pm Nov. 16, 2014 | read full post »

A Matter of Balance
I am a Libra, born October 13th and have found that balance is an essential ingredient in my wellness cookbook. Some work, some play, some rest. Time with friends and family, time in solitude. Time to dance and sing, time to meditate and veg. Kind of a bio-psycho-social version of Ecclesiastes. I f

posted 9:15:50pm Nov. 13, 2014 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.