Phoenix Rising


There’s been a lot written about September as Suicide Prevention Month. There are walks scheduled, grassroots support movements growing…in particular Project Semicolon, a brilliant step toward reframing the question in a way that warms this grammarian’s heart…

It’s been a passionate topic for me for a long time: I’ve seen friends teeter on the edge and – thankfully – pull themselves back, or allow themselves to be pulled back. Other classmates, sadly, were not so fortunate.

What To Do During the 11th Hour


I’ve been circling around this topic for months?…years?….decades?…and finally I think it’s time
to square my shoulders and confront it, crazy and apocalyptic as it may sound.
The topic is…well, The Big One. The big earthquake, financial crash, climate-change climax, the perfect catastrophic convergence of
all the razors’ edges we’ve been walking as a planetary society. The Big One, or cascade of Big Ones, that nobody wants to talk about, that we are excising from our consciousness like Florida Governor Rick Scott excising the words and concept of “climate change” from state policy.

Birthing Past to Future

IMG_20150707_085359277Blues night…Dar Williams on Spotify as I de-clutter the kitchen fordonation runs tomorrow. Maybe it’s the rain, maybe it’s the last of Mom and Dad’s odds and ends on the front porch of the old house to go to the dump…fraying carpets, ancient air conditioners, mattresses…the last push of transition.

My son’s old bedroom is packed with stored energy, memory-weighted artifacts to sort, keep, donate or gift. I look at these things and see them as Mom displayed them, hear her reading her writing to me for feedback, see Dad jerry-rigging his unique creations from bits and snips…

My Mother’s Paradox

Moving through the process of clearing my parents’ house yesterday…next up, the audiotape collection, from classical to easy-listening to my mother’s conservative political tapes: Oliver North’s “My Dream for America”; a titleless Pat Robertson tape; home recordings of Nixon’s resignation speech; Ronald Reagan’s acceptance speech; a birthday honoring of William F. Buckley with a talk by Leo Buscaglia on Love on the other side (perfect representation of the paradox that was my mother).

Feeling her presence so clearly, I ask: what should I be doing with these? A quick answer: keep the ones that resonate, Freecycle the rest.

The Other Side of Reality Bites

One of my favorite bumper stickers reads: Don’t Believe Everything You Think.  It’s one of myRelease2 rules for living…most of the time. Stop, look, and reconsider: what interpretations am I taking for granted?

And then there are the times when I am sliding down the scree slope into despair over the inaction of People (read: me) in responseto the state of the world. The numbing-out habits of Our Culture (read: me). The indecision, time-frittering, distractedness, deflection,  inessential activities, etc., etc., of Others (read: me).

Personally Deciding the Future of Humankind


In a prior post I shared a question that keeps arising for me in meditation:   What would you do if you really believed Arvol Looking Horse’s words: “Each of us is put here in this time and this place to personally decide the future of humankind. Did you think the Creator would create unnecessary people in a time of such terrible danger?”

Some months ago, I read Belief Without Borders by Linda Mercadante…a deep analysis of the growing groundswell of spiritual “Nones” – a.k.a. the “spiritual but not religious.”  I could find much to resonate with…but one glaring absence left me flummoxed.

“Joyous Repentance” by David Sparenberg

As we sink deeper into darkness approaching winter solstice, poet-playwright, actor, director & author David Sparenberg offers this breathtaking video “inviting all Sufis, Gypsies, poets, alchemists, mystics and lovers to come and have a look. This is an alternative to violence video, to the cult and culture…”

Reality Check

Questions I’ve been receiving in meditation:

What would you do if you could see that every fumbling step was a lesson, a priceless piece of the mosaic of your life?

What would you do if you knew that the paralysis you feel in the face of greed’s ascendancy is due to your own participation – buying gas for the car, oil for the furnace, etc., etc.?

What would you do if you knew that solutions ultimately won’t come from pointing fingers, blaming self or others, but from sitting in the cosmic dance of interconnected wisdom?

To Stop Feeling Alone, Stop Being Alone

In a long-ago job, a manager once told our team – “I don’t want to hear about a problem unless you have a solution to offer.”

I’ve tried to take that as a guideline for blog posts: not to kvetch about an issue unless I can work my way through it to an answer…or at least a new perspective.

On Staying Sane in a Suicidal Culture

Reposting this terribly important essay from TruthOut, drawing inspiration from Joanna Macy and The Work That Reconnects on remaining alive, sentient, intelligent, and emotionally and spiritually connected in these horrifying times…