Community

Crucible

Look Within

Bare yourself raw.Burn away the padding.Confront it all.See past the illusions.Connect with your divinity. The legend of a jealous Brahma trying to keep humans from discovering their divinity. ❝ Brahma called a council of the gods to help decide on the right place to conceal their divinity. ‘Let’s bury it deep in the earth,’ said one of the gods. But Brahma said, ‘No, that will not do because humans will eventually dig into the earth and discover it.’ Then another said, ‘Let’s hide it in the deepest part of the ocean.’ But Brahma said, ‘No, they will eventually dive down

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Simplicity

❝ I have little to no interest in extreme mystical states—I have enough on my hands chopping wood and carrying water. I would be truly disappointed if some mystical shortcut bypassed these kind of efforts. I think I like to plod along and rub shoulders with the mundane, with its subtle surprises.❞ This quote is by a very dear friend who has a knack for clearly expressing small mysteries. For years I scaled back the amount of stuff I owned or travelled with. I needed to declutter. A lot of it had to do with cleaning house internally—mind, body, spirit.

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Vulnerability

❝ Healing is not born of vanity. It is born of honesty. Honesty is born of pure love. And love is the most divine healer, the sweetest, holiest and most effective.❞ ~Val Kilmer I have no regrets, nor am I embarrassed. I make no excuses, nor do I feel shame. Instead, I hold dear, and strive to uphold in myself, authenticity and honesty. These two take me by the hand and lead quickly to their cousin, vulnerability. It is through this triad that I bear witness to existence, though it’s not always painless. Why is raw openness often uncomfortable? Perhaps

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Connection

I’ve found myself deeply gripped by sadness lately. As with most things, the causes are multiple, but the underlying theme appears to be the same—connection, or the lack thereof. In this hollow void, I’m referring to both myself and the world at large. Do you also notice that when a topic becomes particularly entrenched in your consciousness that it appears repeatedly throughout your life, from multiple sources, and in varying hues? The matter of connection is bombarding me in the contexts of forest ecology, nature exposure, friendship, vulnerability, global air quality, climate crisis, pain of silence, patience, wellbeing and wealth,

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Team Effort

I’m now 55, fit & healthy in mind, body, and spirit. If I’ve learned anything, it’s that life is a team effort. Friends and loved ones are constantly my teachers. They hold a mirror up for me. They support me.  I try to do the same for them. Thank you. Love you. Constant self-enquiry. Abiding in the present moment. These reveal the delusion of duality. ❝ The peace and quiet I thought I was experiencing was not really an experience at all. It was my own real nature. It was what I always am. ❞ ~Nothing Ever Happened Vol. 3: Papaji Biography.

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Silence & Intention

I’d like to share a fable and why it speaks to me. ❝ A realised man, a sadhu, was walking in the forest. Because it was sunny, he wanted to find somewhere to have a rest. He sat down under a tree, leaned back against the trunk and had a short nap. When he woke up, he was ready to continue his travels. As he was picking up his stick and his begging bowl, he saw many people sitting near him. Much to his surprise, they all stood up and thanked him for his satsang. He told them, ‘But I

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Chapters

It’s time for me to transition, again. My plan, when I came to Catalonia in Dec. 2019, was to live in a small town for eight months while training, racing, and looking for a house to purchase and where I’d put down roots. “The best-laid plans…” I depart, characteristically, with mixed emotions. There’s excitement for a new chapter based on the aforementioned theme, this time in my Nordic homeland where the scent of forest peat is strong and the bird song is familiar. There’s a sadness to leave what started to feel like home in both familiarity and in developing

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Rejuvenation

91 days. As of this writing, I’ve survived fifty-three days in solitary lockdown and thirty-eight days in phased de-escalation. At first, I welcomed the opportunity for deep internal work that sequestration provided. I had just returned from Arunachala in Tiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu, India; a trip that included opening experiences I’d sought for decades. However, as time without face to face communication and zero human physical contact increased, life energy drained from my batteries, and my ability to cope waned. When we citizens were once again allowed to go outside, albeit only in very short and pre-determined time slots, we felt

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Death & Rebirth

Each day I endure multiple deaths and rebirths. Deaths to dreams and to opportunities for exploring, experiencing, interacting, and sharing in the world. The rebirths are of hope and hopefulness. My constant aim is to rise out of dystopia and into light, lightness, and loving movement. But bereavement is taxing, and renewal is not without cost. I experience these particular deaths as energy-sucking crises. While not ominous, they can be dark places filled with sadness, even dread. I am aware that this painted image arises from my mind’s predilection for anxiety, a malevolent vortex with which I am far too

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Alive Again

After nearly two months stuck in my flat, I’m back in nature.Breathing forest terpenes.Resonating with bird songs.Refilling energy stores. If given the choice, for my last time on earth, I will always choose even one quiet minute in nature over any number of days, weeks, months or years confined in concrete. …If possible, I’d spend that moment in silence with a close friend. In an episode of “Living the Questions”, Krista Tippett discusses connection (kindred) and disconnection (sequestration). “We draw raw energy from each other, at a primal, animal level, when we are in the room together.” We need to

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Accountability of Process

In a recent post-workout comment to my coach, I wrote that I got through it thanks to accountability—to myself, to the process, and to him. I could say that something similar is true for most days right now. I’ve been in Spanish lockdown confinement for over seven weeks. Because I live alone, this means that my only interactions have been once or twice a week when visiting the small, weekly market to purchase fresh produce or a health food store for other items. And since I don’t speak Catalan or Spanish there’s been no dialogue. For the first five weeks,

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Conscious Connection

Pre-dawn and daybreak are special times of day for me. There’s a feeling of love, connection and quiet that allows me to more fully resonate with the subtle energies and hear the singing birds. Over the past couple of weeks, out of solidarity and concern, my neighbour and I have taken to waiving and greeting each other, “Bon dia.” During these magical moments, I actively soak in life’s vitality, knowing that it will support me during the coming twenty-four hours. This is especially important during my extended isolation in lockdown. I often think and dream about being in a different

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Real—Unreal

This morning I climbed onto a ledge and sat in the first rays of sunshine to drink tea and read. The chapter, entitled ‘Creation theories and the reality of the world’, contains Sri Ramana’s answers to questions regarding our enigma with the waking and dream worlds, and our difficulty in coming to terms with which world, if either, is real and which is unreal. It’s a subject upon which I’ve never felt I could get any grasp, and not for lack of trying. But this morning’s musings were set on the backdrop of comments made virtually between friends these past

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Portal

What an odd experience it is to be sequestered, to be in lockdown. I’m certain that we all feel some level of frustration, uncertainty, helplessness, and/or inquiry into one, or many, dimensions of our central, global coronavirus motif. Admittedly, my biggest challenge is the same now as always, not to be overly occupied with beliefs on various topics. Perhaps that’s why I keep returning to the theme of holding space for insight and change. Humorously, even this is based on my own viewpoints. Notwithstanding, I step into the enquiry: can this time be a catalyst for a shift in the

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I Am

The title of this post is a shameless copy from my best mate’s blog post. Dano has a tremendously optimistic view in life, and he’s constantly teaching me to give people the opportunity to shine. Yet, with race and event cancellations, the global pandemic, uncertainty abounding on (too) many levels, and the growing virus on his island paradise even he is feeling that it’s “hard not to have it get to you.” It’s ‘Aloha Friday’ and he wrote about some things for which he’s grateful. As I read his words I could hear his voice in my head, see his

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