Sacred Poetry | Touchstones Of The Sacred | Touchstones of the Sacred - Part 3

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Sacred Poetry

May 25, 2010 By: admin Category: Poetry, Sacred Art

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A Morning Wish

Go sweet into the morning
join hands with your Spirit
Breathe deep and feel yourself grow
restless to begin
your first walk in the new day

The Eastern Sun at your back
the path before you invites
birdsong and a gentle morning breeze
come to tease the sixth of your senses
You were made to live this day
and smile on the face of God

- WordWulf


Yoga and Everyday People

May 23, 2010 By: Michael E. Crowley Category: Mind Body Spirit, Yoga

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When I left off last week I was scuttling around the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport hoping for a last-second reprieve from having to fly to Chicago.  My wife was holding my hand a bit tighter than usual as we waited in the terminal to soothe my nerves.  More and more frequently prior to boarding, my wife and I would break into a well-rehearsed question-and-answer routine:  “People do this every day?” I would ask.  She would respond in the affirmative:  “People do this every day.

Repeating that phrase helped me see that, on entering the aircraft, I would become part of a community of millions of people who would all, barring the rare accident, get where they were going and would return home again on a daily basis.  Some nights before the trip I imagined an ongoing stream of airplanes sailing over my head, filled with people already doing what I was planning to do.

Yoga provided me with many benefits on this last trip besides the strength to carry heavy luggage up and down subway stairs or the calm to manage a phone interview with a potential employer on my last day in Chicago. In addition to the quote by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn from Healing and the Mind that I posted last week, I found an explanation of yoga in the same interview that I hadn’t heard before. Read more »


Daily Practice: Rethinking Safety and Security

May 21, 2010 By: Matsya Siosal Category: Living with Intention, Mantra, Malas, Meditation, Mind Body Spirit, Teachings

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This morning I found myself thinking about a day I spent with my 4-year-old niece. We walked to a park near my house and she ran from tree to tree bestowing hugs and proclaiming her love quietly to the rough bark. She was determined to master the play structure and I helped her climb. Whenever she reached a point that felt too high, too unsteady, I felt her small body tense up, the vibration from her tightening grip moved through her slender limbs to my own body and I could feel her confidence falling like dominoes.

During those shaky moments I held her firmly and said that I had her safe, I wouldn’t let her fall. Sometimes this reassurance was enough for her to rebalance, find a foothold and climb higher still. Sometimes though she found she really had gone too high and she would fall back grateful and laughing into my arms.

Can’t we all relate to joy of a pair of strong arms to fall safely into?

In Start Where You Are: A Guide to Compassionate Living Pema Chödrön shares with us why she practices Buddhism:

We can discover the process of letting go and relaxing during our lifetime. In fact, that’s the way to live: stop struggling against the fact that things are slipping through our fingers. Stop struggling against the fact that nothing’s solid to begin with and things don’t last. Knowing that can give us a lot of space and a lot of room if we can relax with it instead of screaming and struggling against it.”

As my mind chewed on this revolutionary approach to life I began to see glimpses of what it would feel like to let go like this. It was both liberating and deeply comforting. I think one of the biggest ways that we resist letting go is by chasing perfection or in another way never reaching to climb higher because we fear failure. Read more »


Poetry Contest

May 19, 2010 By: admin Category: Poetry

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Calling all poets!

It is our highest intention to serve those who seek a path of meaning by creating the national resource for sacred living.

Because the beauty and meaning of sacred art, music and poetry supports and inspires intentional living, it is our desire to support sacred artists by sharing their work.

In this spirit Touchstones of the Sacred is pleased to announce our first ever poetry contest! We seek all styles and forms of poetry especially contemplative, introspective,  ecstatic poetry and Haiku but there are no limits!

On July 1st one poem will be selected and the winning poet will receive a desktop prayer wheel that was handcrafted in Tibet.

Send up to 5 poems to  matsya@celedra.com by June 30th.

Poems will be published to our site and we invite you to join the fun and share your comments.


Sacred Poetry

May 18, 2010 By: admin Category: Poetry, Sacred Art

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Ancient Tears

Ancient tears are now birthing
Soft white stars
In this long-endarkened womb,
Bringing to an end
Years of frantic searching
for the Beloved One.
Searching through disconnected phallus
and baby-makers
They too trying to demand their way
Into Paradise.

Exiled from our Homeland,
Fueled by the longing of the Wanderer,
The Great Betrayal enthrones a wrathful Armageddon
Hidden deep in the Heart’s knot
of protective refusal
Generation after generation.

Finally as the century turns
The wanderer reaches the shoreline at the far corner of the desert.
She plunges into this thirst-quenching ocean,
A never-ending deep and dark Silence.
Nothing seems to survive here.

My friend, what dies here is the lies of the Betrayer
And the fortress of her lies.
Through this death the Abyss opens even wider
Opens into the midnight sky.
Oh, luminous blue-black night
Where these ancient tears can finally be met
And take their rightful place
Sweet noble star lights of grace.

~ Ahria Wolf


Lovin’ my new herb garden

May 17, 2010 By: celedra Category: Mind Body Spirit

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What could be better then living right off the earth!

Except for bananas, I can grow all the fruits and veggies I need to live on.  Oh, and avocados.  I love avocados and eat them without reserve.  Why wouldn’t they do to my insides what they would do to my skin?  Make everything luscious and moist and soft.

I wonder if Whole Foods will go bankrupt without my daily attendance?  Probably not.  I love to carry my wicker basket with the big handle out to my garden with a pair of garden scissors and gather a meal.  I am unrelentingly always in awe!  How did my life get this bountiful? There is a split that is beginning to soften between gathering veggies in my garden and having an intimate relationship with my computer for hours at a time.  It’s nice.

This herb garden used to be a elevated spiral, except the spiral kept falling down.  So, this is what I created instead.  I love it.  It feels ancient to me.  Here are a few exquisite reasons to eat herbs. Read more »


Yoga and the Friendly Skies

May 16, 2010 By: Michael E. Crowley Category: Living with Intention, Mind Body Spirit, Yoga

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I’m doing something this weekend that I very rarely do– I’m getting on an airplane and flying to Chicago to take part in a family member’s wedding. I say rarely because I last flew nearly three years ago and that seemed like a good place to leave it.  Yet, here I go again, and of course it’s not going easily.

People who fly without the white-knuckled, jaw-clenching anxiety that I endure before flying seem like the bravest, shiniest people in the world to me.  I, in contrast, often feel like Hoggle from Labyrinth as I enter the concourse – shabby, muddy, troll-like, and in need of a place to hide.

In the scramble to soothe my nerves prior to this upcoming trip, I was poring through Bill Moyers’ Healing and the Mind.  In the section Healing from Within, Mr. Moyers interviews Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, who specializes in using yoga as a means of stress reduction in his patients.  Dr. Kabat-Zinn says this about the real value of yoga: “If you do this (practice yoga) for any period of time, lo and behold, you’ll find the real value of yoga: to work at your limits non-judgmentally.” Read more »


Living Spiritual Depth with Miranda Macpherson

May 15, 2010 By: Matsya Siosal Category: Teachers, Teachings

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June 20-25th join Miranda Macpherson at Esalen Institute for Living Spiritual Depth.

This is Miranda’s most extensive retreat of 2010 and takes place in a beautiful natural environment on the ocean cliffs of the California coast where redwood trees and healing hot springs meet the sea.

As a retreat participant you will join in spiritual community and receive support and guidance in diving beyond habits of suffering to access more of the peace and freedom within. We will also discover how to allow our realizations to take deeper root in our daily life.

Miranda teaches and transmits embodied Self-Inquiry, powerful meditations and devotional practices in a style that is profoundly allowing and real. Additionally, she will share her methods for ongoing practice to support deeper liberation and more substantial access to Grace.

For bookings and further details email programs@esalen.org or visit www.esalen.org.


Being Here

May 13, 2010 By: Sherry Ruth Anderson Category: Aging With Grace and Glory, Sherry Anderson, Teachers

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The only place to start is here, which is to say, in the middle of a life that has no true markers, however much you might try to find or create them.  Here has no need for markers.

It’s a center with no perimeter.  Which is a relief actually—to not have to worry about patting down one’s edges (that are always fraying anyway), or pulling them in or otherwise having to keep track of that fictional construction of I that we’re always fussing with, checking in the mirror to see if it’s still there and how much it has deteriorated since we last looked.

When did I start to notice that all this fussing and checking and tending was such a chore?  I think it happened backwards.  It was after the walls that were keeping here boxed in relaxed themselves, as if the tension that had held their molecules together couldn’t be bothered to get it up anymore.

It wasn’t dramatic.  It was, in fact, a very gradual and tender sort of process.  But at a certain point I noticed that my usual sense of hurtling through the backyards of life on a Bullet Train was gone.  Evaporated.  And here was the only place to be.  I was going to say, The only place I wanted to be, but it wasn’t like that.  It wasn’t a choice.  Here was, and is, what is real and everything else seems to be beside the point.

I hope I’m not driving you crazy with this.  I’m just trying to tell you how it is these days over here in Cronehood or Cronedom or Elderville or whatever you want to call this most interesting time of being alive in my late sixties.  And to explain why the idea of my making a map makes me feel like the handless maiden.  Read more »


When the ants come marching in…

May 10, 2010 By: celedra Category: Living with Intention, Mantra, Malas, Meditation, Mind Body Spirit

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Would you let ants hang out in your kitchen?

Assuming your answer is “no”, then why do we let negative thoughts roam around in our precious brains?! And the damage is SO much more detrimental:

  • feeling bad about ourselves
  • imagining all kinds of unfriendly thoughts from people
  • feeling hopeless, helpless, guilty, powerless etc etc etc
  • spending lots of potential fun time on worry, worry and more worry
  • generally missing out on life – how can we be present to enjoy it when we are all lost in our little ant piles?

And it’s a choice! Granted, it doesn’t feel like a choice at this time, but indeed, it is a choice. It is a choice based on awareness, intention and action, all of which comes beautifully to light through the practice of meditation. Read more »




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