The edges of "I"

Creeping back into my online world, a post by Denis St-Pierre at Integral Naked inspired me to reflect on my own current now:

Where do "I" begin and where does "stuff" end?

I fall into these words of honest questioning, deep transforming. . . and I feel the weight of my own moment. I feel heaviness that tinkers on the edge of sadness, on the edge of uncertainty, on the edge of excitement, coated in faith and acceptance.

I walk through my new home. It's beautiful. I stop and pause, allowing myself to merge with a photograph that melts do deeply through my history into my being. I smile at my new acquisitions, the couch that holds me tight, the dining room table at which conversations will ignite, the alter of my roommate which expresses his soul, the books of inspiration that have accompanied us on our paths, the stones of connection that leaped into my hands at some sacred place, in some sacred moment, the new desk my computer sits upon, light solid wood that invites me to sit comfortably, writing, reading, connecting with a world beyond my fingertips. This is my home.

Where do "I" begin here? It is at this juncture, after the 'stuff' of the past has been left behind that I open to connecting with the 'stuff' of my present. I feel myself charging the things: my bed, my kitchen, my front door, my desk, my view, my yard, my neighborhood. I feel myself trying to find "I's" place in this new home. Creating Home.

Where do "I" begin and where does "stuff" end?

I wander around this new town. Oh wait, it's no longer a town, I live in a city now. I feel the familiarity and I feel the newness. There is so much that I don't know; places I've never visited, people I've never met, experiences I've never had. . .sadness on the edge of uncertainty on the edge of excitement, enveloped in faith and acceptance, in reverence of my own expression of divinity unfolding in the world.

How strange it is to be a human body moving through the world, interacting with other human bodies, with the contours of the land, with Essence that seeps in from every direction. How strange it is that we can be so invisible and anonymous and also so illuminescent and known. How strange it is to walk this edge of wondering, where do "I" begin and where does "I" end, asserting a healthy identity, feeling the edges of growing pains, watching and accepting as transition and transformation pours through me, inviting me deeper into the unknown.
posted by ashley


A site to visit

I appreciate how Fragments from Floyd offers a little buffet of valuable information and news events. I particularly benefited from reading about some effects of privatizing water and the possible bird flu's appearance in China. Thanks Fred!

p.s. Privatizing isn't a word, is it? Oh well!
posted by ashley


Some questions about Love

Always display as much love as you can.

What does it mean to always display as much love as you can?
How do you know when you're displaying love, espcially in mundane aspects of your day?
Is it really possible to display love at all times. . . for every moment to be a display of love?
What does love look like?
What does love feel like?
How do you recognize love in a room?
How do you recognize love in a person?
How do you recognize love in the wind?
How do you recognize love pouring through your heart. . .and then how do we always display that, as much as we can, always?

What is the path to Being Love. . . Displaying love always in all ways.

These questions remind me of a story Maria shared that touched me so deeply. After reading about her and her father, I began to really look at people in my life, myself included, wondering about our own unique ways of loving. Sometimes expressions of love are explicit and clear (for instance, when I tell you, "I love you"!!). We also each display love in more daily, routine, mundane, obscure, implicit (and so the list continues) ways.

Meditating on the question, How do I express love? I was pleased and surprised to find that one major expression of my love to others comes through my honesty. How do you express love?

There are 10 different questions about love in this post. If you feel called, please do share an answer to one of them with us. I am always honored to deepen my own experience of loving through sharing with others.
posted by ashley


We love you Mimi

My grandmother, Mimi, or as others called her, Bernice Pryzant, passed away on Tuesday.

It has been an intense week, being present with her and my family physically, emotionally and spiritually as she made the transition from life to death, as we accompanied her through this transition.

My grandfather, her husband of 58 years, offered such a gift of reflection today as he said:
This week has been a huge display of love. Sometimes you forget how much love is around. It's a reminder to always display as much love as you can.

May we all take that reminder to heart.
posted by ashley


Do Be Do Be Do Be

Just before returning to Texas to retrieve my belongings, Miriam asked me, "How does it feel to travel so much?" I carried this question with me as I was unpacking and repacking my boxes, saying hello and goodbye to friends in Texas, and traveling across the country, arriving at the front door of my new home in Seattle, ready to settle in.

At the end of this journey, I felt like the majority of my attention was focused on finding my own stability. I felt slightly obsessed with my desire for a home, for a safe place that was mine, where I could land, unwind, and Be, expressing whatever aspect of me that was present at the moment. At times I was quite hard on myself, feeling like this yearning was getting in the way of me being present with what was unfolding around me. And it was getting in the way; I often noticed that my attention was split between what was occurring in the present moment and what it was that I needed to DO to bring my desire closer to reality.

A night of friends, good food, a hilarious game of charades and lots of laughter left me feeling in synch. Lying on my bed, I was washed with such joy and appreciation for being alive. I was filled with gratitude for this blessed life that I experience and for the company of such incredible people on this journey. I felt so clearly that I was woven into the tapestry of my environment. . . aligned with Being.

AHA. . . THAT'S IT! Aligned with Being (one of those AHA moments ignited within me!)

I realized that part of the beauty of being stable and having 'Place' is the opportunity to be woven into one's environment. We surround ourselves with people, materials, and places with which we fit. When living a healthy lifestyle, we are able to fluidly move about in our surroundings. We are comfortable and relaxed, not carrying too much weight, gliding effortlessly with elegant ease from one mode of being to another. For me, it is when my life becomes burdened with effort that I recognize something is out of alignment and in need of greater awareness, more focused attention. When traveling, the feeling of being woven into my environment was more sporadic. It would come in crisp moments, then drift to the background.

This AHA brought me back full circle.

December 31, 2004, my car and I started our journey heading northwest. A major, life-shifting event had swept out all the plans that decorated my future and offered me the opportunity to just trust my heart. In theory, I believe that if we dedicate ourselves to this moment (right now), offering our gifts and talents as service to humanity, following our passion, being honest with ourselves and others, and listening deeply to guidance that is before us and within us. . . that life unfolds exactly as it should. I encourage, support and inspire people to listen to their heart, to trust that they are guided. I decided it was time to put my own theory to the test, letting go and Listening, heading out with one intention, to Be.

I know that I am a very responsible Doer. When something needs to get done, I'm quick to figure out what action needs taken to accomplish the task. The mission of my travels of the past 6 months was to allow Doing to arise from Being. Rather than figuring out a plan and setting out to bring it to action (Doing), I decided to Be the fullest expression of myself that I could be in each moment. I trust that if I'm fully Being, the Doing will naturally arise. If I'm sharing the gifts that I have to offer to the world with the world, right now, a 'job' will unfold. If I'm interacting with people openly and genuinely, open and genuine people will become a part of my community. If I Am, then that which I need to Do becomes self-evident and unfolds in my life in a fluid manner. When I'm focused on doing, taking care of business, making things happen, sometimes I forget to fully Be. My attention is split between what is occuring in the present moment and what I need to do; my Being is more sproradic, coming in crisp moments and then fleeing to the background.

So, I return to the analogy of visiting others. When I am tip-toeing around other people's life, trying not to impose, trying to fit in, trying to find my place of belonging, I'm Doing and I feel the effort of not being an integrated part of the system. When I am resting as myself, comfortable in my body, comfortable in my environment, glowing as just-me, I am a fluid part of the tapestry of Now. I am a part of my environment. I am Being and from that being, the action (or doing) that is needed rises to the surface and lets itself be known.

It's nice to see this lesson continue to grow within me. I am beginning this next chapter of my life and feel so grateful for the positive confirmations that it's possible to live in this way that I so adore. And, I have clear signs of how much work and play is still to come in my ever-unfolding process of remembering to just Be!
posted by ashley


A traveling map

Hello there Easily Amazed friends,

I plan to be returning to this world of posting in the very near future. In the meantime, if you're interested in seeing the land over which I've traversed in the last 6 1/2 months, feel free to download the image found here.

And for the internal space I've journeyed through during this time... stay tuned!!!
posted by ashley

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