Not everyone is merry today

Given what I do in life, people often tell me things that they don’t say in social situations or sometimes even to friends and family. This holiday season, I am very aware of how many people are having a really tough time of it. All around there are casual expressions of Happy Hanukah and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. On social media, posts of (apparently) happy families abound. Meanwhile, lots of people are just trying to find a way to get through the holiday season without falling into profound desperation.

So I am not going to say Happy Holidays or Merry anything. Those who are genuinely merry are very lucky. If you’re struggling today, you’re not alone. If you’re grieving someone’s absence, you are not alone. If you’re ill and don’t know how you can manage another year, or even if you’ll have another year, you’re not alone. If you’re broke and looking for work, or working hard and still broke, you’re not alone.

Life is full of challenges. And it’s full of opportunities and the potential for joy. If you are at a point in your life when it feels like the challenges are overtaking everything else, you are not alone.

This holiday season, can we please have the awareness that those around us might be suffering? I won’t say Merry Christmas to anyone today. Instead, I will say: I wish the very best for you. May you receive what you need to heal and thrive in this New Year.

Sacredness Becomes Obvious

I have completely lost patience with anyone telling me how to Be.

I am not young anymore. I do not look up to anyone. Nor am I living the illusion of superiority. I am looking across to everyone and everything.

This existence that we’re swimming in – I don’t begin to understand it. I won’t pretend. I refuse to pretend wisdom. I have gone deep enough into myself to know mystery. And so, when others claim sureness, I find myself quite skeptical.

I don’t care what the tradition is; I find myself quite skeptical.

I begin to understand the point of consciousness that we are calling Me. I gaze at myself and there is recognition, there is some reality in here somewhere, there is something I begin to understand.

And I notice. In this exact moment, through the magic of my ears and brain, through the magic of air and wings, I hear the cicadas’ whirr. It is familiar and beloved, and fresh. I don’t understand it, and it whirrs through me, electric in my cells. My heart samples its beat.

I am not going to tell you how to hear cicadas. I am not going to tell you how to hear me, how to hear yourself, how to hear your own heart’s beat.

If I let you Be, I can find full joy in you. Your sacredness becomes obvious, and there is nothing that either of us needs to prove. I have completely lost patience with any aspect of me wanting to tell you how to Be.

You and I – if we can sit here noticing, then maybe something has started between us.

I don’t want to take away any parts of you. And I am done letting anyone take away parts of me. When I pay attention, I notice that my love is indiscriminate. I love you, and I love myself, and I love the cicadas, and I love the air.

That is simply how it is. Your liking it or disliking it, my liking it or disliking it – changes nothing. I have completely lost patience with anyone telling Be how to Be. Existence moves inside us and I am powerless to make it any less.