The Awakening Writer

“Nature is incapable of producing two identical creations, and she calls us to discover and bring forth our uniqueness. The great mystery is that life, too, colludes to find us.” —Parker J. Palmer, Leading from Within Over my lifetime (I can say that now at 60), I have identified Cornerstones of Awakening. Awakening to our true nature. Awakening to our creativity. Awakening to community and compassion. We all witness the power of words. Our stories, the ones we tell ourselves and others, are the narratives we live. Even the vibration of words are known to influence our psychophysical and spiritual systems. Inherent in … Continue reading

During Such Times, What Matters?

Many of my writerly friends and students have contacted me recently discouraged and confused. What does any of “this” matter?, they ask. “Who cares what I write about?” Besides, they claim, “my story is not unique.” Let me respond first with a personal story. I found myself looking in the mirror lately with dismay. I see an old woman.  At the core of me I know a truth: that I am aging, and that I am doing a fine job of it. With the awareness that all judgment involves projection I looked around me. What do I see when I look at others? Do … Continue reading

The Dangers of Distraction

Whatever we give our attention to in our daily lives is what we cultivate, and as a result, becomes manifest. Whatever we nurture through attention grows; unless what we nurture isn’t “real.” This would be like watering a plastic plant. This plant can appear to take in all the light and water you give it but it will never grow. For me, too much attention to “searching”on the internet, television, to consumption, or other activities that really don’t result in anything, draw energy from that which will bring genuine happiness and fulfillment. Too much clutter is a huge distraction too … Continue reading


“Our soul is always calling us home. And the way home is through the mind” –Jiivanii So you are moving along in your life and then something happens that stops everything. You find yourself unable to get out of bed or off the couch. What once was easy is now riddled with anxiety and dificulty. Panic sets in and takes over the mind, body and spirit. What’s happening? Clearly a lot of people experience various degrees of depression and anxiety. Even in good times, there is an average of 16 million new cases of depression in the United States every year, leading … Continue reading

The Meaning Maker

“Ultimately, no human being can find genuine meaning in her life merely by accepting the meaning handed down from those who have gone before. Personal meaning must be created, not accepted, and the process of creating it requires testing and experimentation. A false self will neither test nor experiment; it is a defense against experimenting.”  James F. Masterson, M.D. The Search for the Real Self When life offers us meaningful or even mystical experiences we often tend to seek other’s help to interpret and understand it. However, since the experience is in the context of your life it is important … Continue reading

Healing Medicine for the Hidden Wound: Guru Meditation

This is the final session of the Spring/Summer Meditation Class. Thank you for joining me. This last class is on Guru Meditation. We can get to the root cause of a wound or habit through the practice of Guru meditation. We all have repetitive issues that are diffcult or seemingly impossible to get to the root of and dislodge once and for all from our lives. All our habitual patterns come from our past, our “pain stories.” See more on freedom from our pain stories in my upcoming book: The Wheel of Initiation: Practices for Releasing the Inner Light.  We … Continue reading

Tonglen: Transforming Pain into Love

  “Tonglen is the quickest way to enlightenment.”  His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Madison Wisconsin, June 2008   This is the seventh week of this series of meditation classes. Next week will be the final of this series. Much of my material, okay, all of my material is in reality borrowed wisdom. This week’s wisdom is borrowed from Lama Surya Das and his book: “Awakening the Buddha Within: Eight Steps to Enlightenment.” I highly recommend this and any of his books to further your practice of mind training and meditation. I imagine that what the Dalai Lama says is true, that the quick … Continue reading

Our Search for Happiness

I call upon the natural world and sciences to demonstrate skillful means when helping others decrease suffering and strengthen their well-being. Nature and science often point to the problem and to its neighboring solution. My husband is a wildlife biologist so the natural world and related sciences have become more available to me. I consider myself a true novice in these areas but a willing student. The other day I talked to him about how much energy, time and money people put into searching for happiness. I knew he would respond with some link between this phenomenon and the natural … Continue reading

The Spiritual Pilgrimage and our Psychic Gifts

  Entering the world from a different gate,   A late arrival no one waits before or behind, though the labyrinth has been traversed before,   Where did I put my traveling boots? It’s time to go.   Today something will be offered up to you and to me, – – a challenge to our view of the world and of ourselves. What will that be? Will we let the roots of our way of seeing the world and others be shook loose, letting go of some familiar and favored way, opening up to something yet unnamable?  Are you willing … Continue reading