Embodied Leadership Basics

Rec3How do YOU embody leadership?  It might not be in the way you think.

I felt to publish this excerpt from the Dancing Freedom Facilitator Manual today as we launch into a two week training immersion here at Seven Seeds Farm.  We’re all in this lifetime together… and, if we want to co-create a viable future for our species and all of life, we have stuff to get done!  Let’s do it together beautifully.

 

Embodied Leadership Basics

 

Hey Embodied Leaders! Here are some basic principles that apply holographically to every aspect life and action. They are equally applicable to whole-being, psycho-somatic health, co-creating healthy relationships and co-creating healthy systems (businesses and institutions) that function in integrity with life. They are alchemical principles. Alchemy describes the actual process of being the change: when you change yourself, you change your world. And, as the world changes, you are also changed. (As above, so below. As below, so above. As within, so without. As without, so within.)

 

Leadership is both an archetypal position that some people hold and an attribute that all people have. Some people are simply “born leaders” – they radiate archetypal qualities that people trust and follow. They attract attention and move large amounts of energy. They are charismatic and easily take the lead. Not everyone has this quality. (Think of JFK, Gandhi, MLK or Winston Churchill.) OBSERVE: Who do you naturally “follow?” Why? How do people naturally follow (or not follow) you? How do you radiate the archetype of leadership?

 

On another level, leadership is an attribute that every person exercises in different ways at different times. Each of us leads through example as we co-create our lives in integrity with spirit, soul and all of life. We lead when we be, do, and create our lives as true expressions of our heart-knowing. You lead by being you. How do you embody and exercise the attribute of leadership in your home? Your workplace? Your relationships? Your communities?

Embodied Leadership means showing up in integrity with your core values, purpose and soul essence.   It means actually integrating who you say you want to be into your body, your personality, your habits of thought, word, and action and your ways of relating in the world.

 

Leading is not always about “being the lead.” It is also about following and supporting– being a strong follower, letting others shine, flowing with “the energy”, letting the collective heart lead, following divine directives, letting life lead. Much leadership is invisible. True leaders are not “out there for themselves”, they are great listeners, great followers. They place their lives and their actions at service to something larger than themselves.

 

Embodied leadership means having a certain level of integration – maturity. It is never “achieved”. It requires ongoing practice – living consciously in dynamic balance with life itself – with the changes, challenges and opportunities life offers. It means putting Embodied principles into practice daily as we structure our lives, our work, our relationships, our communication patterns and our social, economic and political systems. It is an ecological approach – a whole-being, inter-relational, life-centric approach to the harmony and interdependence of life.

 

Love,

Samantha

 

ps.  Check out this Summer’s VISION, Soul Quest, July 24-August 4, if you’d like an opportunity to more deeply explore your authentic path of leadership with me.

Imagine

Ceaseless fascination with the songs of light, the turning of seasons, and the camera's invitation to co-create with the eye of god.

Ceaseless fascination with the songs of light, the turning of seasons, and the camera’s invitation to co-create with the eye of god.  photo:  ss

Hey Friend,

This is an invitation to pause.

Imagine, just for a few minutes, the world you really want to live in – the one Yoko and John showed us, the one where you get to romp in the grass everyday, where the sun warms your skin, where your body is radiantly healthy, where everyone dances regularly, and where our parents  and children and partners and lovers and neighbors are true friends.

Bring in the color.  Tune up the sound.  Make a smell symphony.  Melt into it… just for a minute, let yourself have the world you imagine.

Where are you?  Perhaps it is the home you never fully let yourself dream of, the relationship you thought was impossible, the business they said would fail.  Or, perhaps it is the healing practice they said wasn’t valuable, or the art that nobody listened to, or the the silence you thought you needed to cover in order to be heard…

Go there.  Extend the instant.  Extend the interval.  That is where your real power lies – right there – in the center of your imagination.  That’s god power at work.  Don’t let it die.

What can you imagine into existence?

“BUT…” you say, “I’m not sure I deserve this.  I’m not sure it’s possible.  I won’t be supported.  What if I die?”

Imagine, just for this moment, that the universe loves you, that every single thing that has ever happened to you, is happening to you, or will ever happening to you, is perfectly aligned with your soul’s plan for itself and god’s plan for you.   Just let that in.  And, just for today, take another few steps into LIVING INTO the world you imagine.

 

Two(+) keys for today:

Give the world the benefit of the doubt. 

‘Notice whether you imagine (project) good intentions or negative intentions onto the actions or others.  Withdraw the judgement and simply imagine that that person or situation is doing it’s very very best to come to a higher order of resolution with challenge or change.  Notice how this is profoundly relieving for you, because then you are no longer carrying the weight of that judgement.  Repeat… notice.  Find a more charged situation.  Do it again.

Imagine new life where you currently perceive dysfunction or death.

We all have those things we look away from because they are unpleasant, or deadened places within our selves or our world.  Often, we don’t know what to do about them, so we ignore them, or simply cope with them.   Examples:  the knee issue you’ve been nursing for two years but “have just gotten used to living with,” the homeless person whose particular energy and presence speaks mysteriously to you, but who you’ve never said “hi” to, the bare rooftops I’m looking at right now, that I imagine everyday as gardens, solar catchers and water movers.  Every single thing you see that tugs at your body, heart and soul for an authentic response is an opportunity in latent form.  These things invite you to apply your imagination to co-create a higher octave of being, of response, of solution or resolution or connection in your own life and in the world.  Where in your life are you ignoring a potent opportunity to turn towards a challenge or a pain with creative openness to grow, to give and to be changed?  Where are you pushing something away because it doesn’t fit your preferences or fantasy image of your life?  Choose one thing or situation.  Imagine it as a part of the world you want to see – with your heart wide open – and see what new responses arise.

Bonus Key:

“Better Than Imagined”

For me, the most potent key (or prayer) is the one where I use my imagination to conjure and coalesce the most beautiful, elegant, lovingly created thing (like Dancing Freedom, for example, or the organic feast I cooked on Saturday night), then I GIVE IT UP TO GOD, trusting that’s the Greater Intelligence of creation is a more brilliant, diverse, genius co-creator than me alone.  This is where true magic happens.  All you need to do is to allow yourself to engage a dialogue, a conversation, with whatever you perceive that larger intelligence and love to be.  Just try it – dance it, talk it, meditate it, use your gratitude power to engage with it.  See what happens.

More on imagination, creativity and liberation next week…

I love you so much,

Samantha

Say NO to create a BIGGER YES.

Say NO to create a BIGGER YES. 

Ok… so, I live inside a YES culture.  And, I love it.  I am ALL ABOUT the Big Yes to love, to life, to intimacy, to more life… I’m all about the delicious bio-chemistry of embracing my life.

But, really folks, have you taken a moment lately to celebrate NO?

NO it the other side of the big YES.  Without it… we’re just ceaseless, unbounded, amoebic blobs.  Without no, we can’t negotiate our time, energy attention, and intimacy.  Without no, we are unable to create healthy boundaries, to make coherent choices or to be effective in our leadership.

But, we are really afraid of the no. 

We are afraid we will disappoint, upset, off-put or loose out.  We are afraid to be perceived as negative.  We are afraid that NO will inhibit the yes.

We have equated no with negative.
What if no IS profoundly positive?
What if NO is the secret ingredient in a coherent system?
What if NO is the key to living a sane and healthy human life?
What if NO is also part of the BIG YES of oneness?

WHAT IF YOUR STRONG, CLEAR, NO FREES AND SUPPORTS THE BIGNESS OF YOUR YES?

Really… if I were a cell, and I only said YES, I would soon become a cancer.

  • If I were a gardener, and I only said yes, I would only have a plot full of weeds.
  • If I were a mother and I only said yes, I would exhaust myself, and my child would grow up without healthy boundaries or respect for others.
  • If I were a woman, and I only said yes, I’d be recapitulating the same dysfunctional and abusive relationships I came here to heal this lifetime.
  • If I were a leader and I only said yes, you would walk the other way….   Wouldn’t you?

I am here today to firmly and lovingly, joyfully and lightly, embrace NO.  Sometimes it takes a BIG NO to create an even bigger YES.

PRACTICE:

Take a few minutes today to contemplate where in your life you are AFRAID to say no?  Where are you withholding your truth in order to “keep the peace” or please another?  How are you overriding your no in order to please?  How are you holding on to more than you need to because you feel like you “should” be responsible or that you will hurt someone if you walk away?

How would your energy be freed up if you said no?  What would you really loose by saying no?  What might you gain?  And how would the whole situation be clarified and improved by your courage to set a clear boundary?  (Remember – sometimes there is no way to know the answer to this question in advance.)

NOW, pick up that phone, write that email, open that door, and say what needs to be said.  It is through this NO that we are able to create a BIGGER YES.

We Are Evolution

Dancing On The Edge

Dancing On The Edge

We Are Evolution

(Excerpted from the book I am writing:  Dancing Freedom:  A Conscious Mover’s Handbook)

“When a system is far from equilibrium, small islands of coherence in a sea of chaos have the capacity to lift the system to a higher order.”  ~ Ilya Prigogine

Evolution is the process through which change acts on living systems and through which living systems change – transcending and including previous patterns in a spiral pathway of increasing diversity, complexity and harmony.

Nothing ever stays the same.  Change is the eternal constant, and life is motion.  Life implies growth, maturation, decay, death and quiescence.  Death implies rebirth.  The journey through all of these phases is a moving journey.  Systems tend towards expansion and complexity, then fall apart, then cohere again.  Coherency is a point of simplicity, or pure presence, that allows for things to come together (to cohere) at a new order of evolution.

When we navigate change consciously and coherently, we become agents of conscious evolution – literally, we are life, change and evolution being conscious of itself.  We are evolutionaries – shaping and being shaped by the growing edge of consciousness.  When we bring awareness to the process, we influence outcomes.

As we steward change, we are always either midwifing birth or hospicing death – both within ourselves and with others.  Each of us will do some of both as we facilitate Dancing Freedom.  Both things can be happening in the same group of people or in the same individual at the same time.  We hold space for this through love.  We hold safe space for the breakdown and the breakthrough by grounding, expanding to meet whatever IS, and resting in presence and compassion. We do not try to change what is happening.  We simply create coherent space through the balance of expansion (permission, invitation, invocation, inspiration) and containment (clear boundaries and agreements).

“The love we co-create together is an alchemical substance, and this substance can transform our cells and our world.  Love like this is coherence in action.”  ~Falco, founder of Dhamanhur

The Shape of Evolution

The Shape of Evolution

Evolution is happening.  It is happening whether we like it or not.  At this moment, it is heavily amplified by the human presence on the planet.  We have created an evolutionary crucible for ourselves and for all of life.  As conscious creators and members of the human family, it simply makes sense to BE THE COHERENCY.  We have the opportunity to engage evolution consciously – because we can.  This is the grace of having such large brains.  We have self-reflexivity and can make choices!  Because we are a species that is aware of itself and it’s creative relationship with it’s environment, we are uniquely poised to consciously co-create the next steps for our very young species and for all of life on planet earth, and perhaps for all of life in the universe.  We have brains large enough, and hearts big enough to co-create a path of harmony

We can do this by being coherent.

For a human being, coherency comes through:

  • Grounding
  • Personal Presence
  • Collective Resonance
  • Aligning with shift at all scales
  • Developing an Awake Ego
  • Cultivating Nomadic/Indigenous Mind

The Nomadic Consciousness or Indigenous Mind is RESPONSIVE to internal awareness and outer stimulus in a way that is in integrity with life.  Here are some qualities of this way of being:

  • Non-fixety
  • Source Wisdom
  • Life Wisdom
  • Body-presence
  • Permeability with the Environment
  • Wonder
  • Responsivity
  • Loyalty
  • Providing Home
  • Collectivity
  • Self-responsibility
  • Discernment
  • Wise Seeing
  • Humility
  • Energetic & Emotional Ethics
  • Compassion
  • Containment
  • Asking for Help
  • Seeking Elders

Each of us is powerful beyond knowing.  We Are Evolution.  The Collective Consciousness of humanity is a system (or oversoul) that is evolving as WE change the ways in which we project, perceive and respond to reality.

~Copy write, Samantha Sweetwater, 2011

Let The Circle Lead

 

“You have noticed that everything an Indian does is in a circle, and that is because the Power of the World always works in circles, and everything tries to be round.” ~ Black Elk

A circle has no leader.  It shows us what we must follow.

Listening to the Center ~ Photo: Darren Miller

A circle is a primal wholeness.  The social and spiritual architecture of the circle is simple, non-hierarchical and natural.  It replicates an eternity that flows through the arc of time, and the web of connections that hold all of life.  A circle is a fractal of the totality of life expressing all of the directions, and all the phases and faces of existence: birthing, growth, maturation and death.  To pray and listen in a circle repeatedly, regularly over the arc of time is to recognize the eternal and transpersonal aspects of every person’s struggles, joys, growth, and desires.  It is to come to know and feel the mirror that each person’s experience offers for my own, and to receive these sacred mirrors as a continuous invitation to more coherent participation in the life of my tribe.  It is to feel myself in others and others in me and so to move with greater empathy, respect and compassion.  The circle is life speaking with life – a feedback loop for living harmony.

When I sit in circle, I am a member, a listener, a co-equal part of the Collective prayer.   When I sit in circle, before the altar of All of My Relations, I am witnessed by my community, my elders and by spirit.  I am seen, and I see.  If I am falling apart, I am held.  If I am strong, I am part of the collective strength.  If I have courage, it is because I am reflected by my tribe as one who is willing to show up, both in pleasure and in pain, in struggle and in grace.  If I soften and open, it is because I am reminded that the heart is home, and that the path of embrace is the one that leads us all to greatest grace.  My life is elevated because I experience it through the mirror of the whole.  My life makes sense, not because I am “special”, but because the particular ways in which I feel, give, grieve, create, and gather serves to the One Great Life.

The Perfect Logic of Life

About two years ago, I started going to a Chanupa (Pipe) and Wachuma (Sacred Andean Plant Medicine) Ceremonies with George Grey Eagle Bertelstien, an elder living in Berkeley, CA who has held pipe ceremonies and medicine ceremonies for over 25 years.  George is the steward and space holder for our circle, he does not lead in the way we commonly think of leadership in the West.  He would not call himself “a leader.”  Rather, he is a dedicated follower of the ways of ceremony, a listener to the medicine who has given everything in the calling and the vision to steward life in this way.  He is a servant.  As one who has given everything, we trust him.  We take his lead.  We follow.  And, we, too, show up to serve the circle.  As elder, he defines the space, sets the boundaries, shares the teachings, opens the heart.  His stewardship is clear, unwavering, intensely loving and immensely disciplined, yet it arises though a deeply feminine surrender to his own prayer.  He is in dialogue with all of life as the medicine.  His eldership is the closest model I have to the way I now choose to live and lead in the world.  I am choosing to lead through a deepening listening to life, to my creator and to the circle, the sacred hoop of all of my relations.

In the circle, I pray to my creator – not the impersonal god of books and institutions, but my personal creator who I can talk to, who listens, and who “speaks” with me through everything – through my body, my emotions, my friends, my family, my community, the water, the buffalo skull, the eagle feather, the song of the rising sun – everything.  With the sacrament of tobacco and the power of my voice, I pray.  Through the prayer, I meet the unknown, I open my heart, and I set a clear trajectory of intent for my life.  Through the prayer, I gain clarity beyond words that I carry daily into work and relationships.  In this way, the prayer continues to unfold as my life, and again, I meet my life and continue the prayer.  It is a circle.

Dynamic Equilibrium

In Pipe Ceremony, we pray in this way:  we give gratitude; we ask for what we most want; we ask for help.  Then we get quiet and listen.  Our listening to each other makes us transparent as it amplifies and harmonizes the prayer.  Then we smoke the prayer, passing the sacred pipe from heart to heart, surrendering outcomes to the divine intelligence that governs All.

Praying in this way has shown me that we human beings all want the same things, all feel the same pains, all struggle in the same ways.  We all suffer pain and loss, we all revel in victory, abundance and success, we all want a good life for our selves and the people we love, we all crave intimacy, connection, direction and meaning.  We are all deepening our capacity to be with the unknown and the difficult, and to soften and open to life, even as we get clearer and stronger in creating our deepest heart desires.  We all fall down, and are ever growing in courage, strength, surrender and discernment.  Sitting in circle teaches all of this.  It invites immense compassion and empathy.  And, it supports participation because everyone has a unique place and everyone is the same.  We see again and again the mirror that no one is perfect, yet our commitment and right effort bring great gifts into our own lives and to the world.  We say, “Bless your life.”  These words elevate both the sacred and the profane – the “life-y-ness” of our lives.

The Sacred Altar ~ Thank You George Grey Eagle Bertelstien & Barrett Eagle Bear!

The circle has taught me to get humble.  “Getting humble” means setting down indignance, entitlement, judgment, importance and smallness.  It means surrendering ego defenses, taking ideas, opinions and preferences less personally, and literally becoming more naked to what Spirit asks.  “Getting humble” means to cease the endless human vanity of thinking that I have all the answers.  It means setting down rage or frustration at life or at God and instead practicing trusting, asking and allowing.  “Getting humble” means to take the corrections that life offers, in the form of suffering or disharmony, and to find a new prayer for greater grace.  “Getting humble” means not rejecting what is.  The prayer is always to embrace what is and to thank it.  This gratitude is the gateway to transformation.  It is through this authentic “thank you” that I am empowered to stand in the blessing, the bigness and the beauty of my life.

Getting to humility is not always easy.  In August, I was hosting the VISION Soul Quest Ceremony I do in Mount Shasta every summer.  For the first time, George and many of my medicine family had come to support the ceremony.   I felt intensely honored and humbled by their presence, willingness and collective wisdom.  But, I was a mess – completely stressed out, feeling terrified of doing the wrong thing, of mis-stepping, or of in any way dishonoring or upsetting my medicine family or any of the participants in the quest itself.  I felt like I was going to do “it” wrong – meaning everything and anything.  My inner perfectionist was literally wreaking havoc on my inner compass.  The whole situation was a perfect storm of triggers for my deepest control patterns and ego defenses.  The people I most love and respect had showed up to support me and to learn from me, and I could not bring myself to surrender to the circle of our co-creation.  George, of course, noticed this, and jokingly said to me, “honey, you just try to make a bad prayer.”  My inner spin continued.

Once the questers were on the mountain, those of us holding space entered into a second cycle of medicine ceremony.  When my turn came to pray, I said to George, “I don’t know what to pray for. It’s not that I need to be right, I just want to stop making myself wrong.”  He chuckled and said, “Oh, that’s a good prayer.  That’s the prayer to not be an ass-hole.”  What he meant was that, the more you try to do it right, the more you generally do it wrong.  There is no “right,” there is just the profound and total act of showing up.  When we show up to create big ceremony, a big prayer, part of us is convinced that it is “us” leading the ceremony.  This part competes with the part that is actually surrendered to the ceremony, so we make ourselves and others crazy.  “Not being an ass-hole” means letting go of thinking we are (or need to be) in charge.

Then he said, “Let me show you a trick.  Get down on your knees.”  He had me kneel on the ground and place my hands behind my head.  Then he put a cup of medicine in my hands and told me to carry it over my head without spilling a drop – a simple, total gesture.  “The only way you can do that is to be a human being.  Breathe.  Be a human being.” I followed, crying, breathing, praying with every aspect of my being to release, to let go of the tyrant of my own perfectionist.  I prayed to surrender my striving to be enough or to “get it right.”  I asked for the simple poise and trust to relax and be a human being.  Then I drank the medicine, letting it fill me, letting all of my emotions release, and trusting the prayer.

It worked.  Something huge and subtle shifted in me that day.  When the questers returned, I was able to receive them with an open heart and a quite mind.  I was able to carry out the rest of the ceremony as listener, a leader yet an equal member.  I was more able to simply be a human doing her part for the life of the tribe.

And, if any of us wanted or needed any kind of affirmation that we had genuinely given our prayer in service to the one great life, we received it from the spirits of the land in the form of an extraordinary omen.  At the completion of the ceremony, an Eagle and a Condor soared together, magically, over our heads.  It felt as though they were showing us, doubtlessly, that we had married our hearts, bodies and minds through our prayers, that our prayer were heard, and that we had genuinely surrendered ourselves to spirit.

The Fire of Life

The shifts continue to deepen.  I am now more able notice the part of me that generates answers (so that I can feel safe) and to restrain that part so that I can listen more fully to how to serve the situation at hand.  I have learned to pause and ask for help with every situation in my life: big, little and in between.  In doing this, I have discovered a well of connection, surrender and of faith where I can flow with the changes and also rest.  Rather than immediately seeking an answer or solution in any situation, I tend to exhale into trust first, then ask what is in highest good.

I am experiencing renewed collaboration and passionate co-creation in my work.  I have initiated a community-wide conversation with all 60 Dancing Freedom Facilitators about how we can collectively create our brand to reflect each person’s unique leadership contribution, thus shaping a unified circle of embodied change-agents all serving the same purpose of embodied awakening within an immense diversity of communities.  We are literally creating Dancing Freedom as a reflection of the whole circle of teachers.  It is an experiment where leadership is emergent through the shared heart, mind and practice of my community, not through me as the founder of the school.  This fluidity is being supported by an increasing coherence in the way I hold the role of founder (elder) with lightness and clear authority.  It is trustworthy because I trust myself.  I hold the anchor, and I welcome true participation from everyone.   This is the wisdom of the circle in action in my life.

George’s guidance and these traditional ceremonies and ways of prayer have changed everything.  I live in the circle of life.  I have learned how to be in a daily conversation with My Creator and with all things – animals, elements, directions… everything – as animate, power-filled Relations that I am here to serve. I have learned to engage every aspect of my life as prayer.  And, I am beginning to see the world with medicine eyes, hear the world with a medicine heart and act in the world as “a medicine person” – one who lives transparently and who navigates from a constant dialogue with spirit and with the life principle itself.  These ceremonies are teaching me how to lead through listening, to be authentic and simple in all of my relationships, and to love and serve with a humble and grateful heart.  They reveal to me again and again that the Power of the World flows in a circle, and that the best I can do to “lead” is to shape myself as a servant to that Power.

Slow Freedom: On the Path Towards a Regenerative Culture

Slow Freedom:

I think a lot about SLOW LEADERSHIP.

What do I mean by SLOW LEADERSHIP?  I mean that leadership is something that every single person is capable of, and that true leadership arises with maturity and deep relationships.  It is not about power over, it is about power shared and empowerment offered.  It is about leading AND following.  It is about learning and living the deep mechanics of co-creation.  It is about the real nature of freedom and the indomitability of love.

It’s also about REGENERATIVE CULTURE… not just sustainability, which really won’t cut it if we want our species to survive over the next few decades, but REGENESIS – beyond steady state and on to net-positive (carbon-negative) life ways.

I am totally committed to spreading and embodying the world-views and self-perceptions that support us to cultivate to create a Regenerative Culture… one person and one organization at a time.

So, here’s this morning’s thoughts on FREEDOM and BOUNDS:

First, we believe that freedom means that we can do whatever we want.  We experience freedom in the joy of expression, motion, self-assertion… We learn “who” we are by gaining the tools we need to express ourselves into the world and by actively asserting this self-experience into the world.

Then, we grow up.  We get a little bigger, we get a little wiser, and we realize that it’s not all about us.  The true “leader” in us begins to awaken.  We start to glimpse that leadership requires restraint… We struggle against this.  It feels like control.  Then, we realize that to be stuck in a concept of freedom is purely self-centered is to live in a prison… If my freedom is purely personal, it becomes meaningless in the context of society where my freedom is co-generated with your freedom.  We are both bound within the same social contract.  We both feed at the same table and drink from the same river.  We both have dreams of a world that serves us, our families, our loved ones.  We both have needs that we can better meet TOGETHER.  Living on a small planet at the verge of total systems collapse reveals, undeniably, that we can not fulfill our needs and dreams when we are separate or against eachother.  We all have differences that we need to negotiate in this process…

The universe opens to as we own the deep path of co-creating with it.

When we “grow up”, or, as I like to think of it – step into the phase of mature adulthood, we realize that we are only free by virtue of our capacity to be and love ourselves in all situations and to co-create with WHAT IS in true honor and service.  We realize that a mature freedom implies stewarding connections, committing to relationships and engaging in processes that hone our patience, our ability to meet challenge, and our ability to occasionally put aside the arising experience of personal desires in favor of commitment to a larger vision, project or process.  Every parent knows about this this.  Every good leader knows all about this.  It is the Divine Right of Kings (and Queens) to understand that service to the kingdom is service to the self (and to the SELF).  It is the truth of our majesty and beauty that we are free not simply by virtue of what we serves us, but also by virtue of how we hold and co-create within our bonds to the world, to our loved ones, to our commitments, and ….yes… to our leadership growing edges where we feel really challenged and stuck and we want to walk away.

This is not separate from HAVING FUN… ! Let’s figure it out together.

Love,

Samantha

And… on this note: two poems.

The first is on of my all time favorites excerpted from David Whyte.  The second is my response.

Deep Freedom

You must learn one thing.
The world was made to be free in.
Give up all other worlds
Except the one to which you belong.
Sometimes it takes darkness
And the sweet confinement
Of your aloneness
To learn
Anything or anyone that does not
Bring you alive
Is too small for you.”
–    David Whyte

You must learn one thing.
The world was made to be bound to.
Give up all other worlds
Except the one to which you belong.
Sometimes it takes complete arrival
And the sweet compression
Of your participation
To learn
Anyone or anything that challenges you
Can alight
The flame within.
–    Samantha Sweetwater