A New Dance

image

Make everything in you an ear, each atom of your being, and you will hear at every moment what the Source is whispering to you, just to you and for you, without any need for my words or anyone else’s.

You are—we all are—the beloved of the Beloved, and in every moment, in every event of your life, the Beloved is whispering to you exactly what you need to hear and know.

Who can ever explain this miracle?

It simply is.

Listen and you will discover it in every passing moment. Listen, and your whole life will become a conversation in thought and act between you and Source, directly, wordlessly, now and always.”

– Rumi

The Dreamers

On the shoulders of
Great open minds
Who came before
I stand and strain to hear and see

I feel as Wordsworth
A motion and a spirit that impels
I feel the magickal idealism of
Courageous people infecting me

I walk in steps tread long before
I look around in wonder
Read all the pretty words
And hear the song of the human heart

There is a current of knowledge and wisdom
That flows all around us and was gifted to us
I withhold my stamp on the world
And am quiet to allow the deeper pattern to emerge

I feel destiny
And the responsibility and hopes
Of a thousand ancient hands
At my back

The Ancestors speak to me
And instill
A knowing that their sacrifice was
Not in vain

There is fear in the world
There is anger in the world
There is covetousness and jealousy too
There is murder of the innocent

But there is love and sacrifice in this world

There is beauty in the world
There is hope and courage in the world
There is Light and Truth
There is a bounty to harvest

In separation
In rending
In suffering
Love knows it’s depth

I will add my part
To the ancient myths and songs
And dream with you of
Our best future

On Death and Life

image

On Death from The Prophet

by Khalil Gibran

Then  Almitra spoke, saying, “We would ask now of Death.”

And he said:

You would know the secret of death. But how shall you find it unless you seek it in the heart of life?

The owl whose night-bound eyes are blind unto the day cannot unveil the mystery of light.

If you would indeed behold the spirit of death, open your heart wide unto the body of life.

For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.

In the depth of your hopes and desires lies your silent knowledge of the beyond; And like seeds dreaming beneath the snow your heart dreams of spring.

Trust the dreams, for in them is hidden the gate to eternity.

Your fear of death is but the trembling of the shepherd when he stands before the king whose hand is to be laid upon him in honour.

Is the sheered not joyful beneath his trembling, that he shall wear the mark of the king?

Yet is he not more mindful of his trembling?

For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?

And what is to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?

Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.

And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.

And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.

As I embrace the Light above and below in my life, something interesting is happening. I am finding a hunger for life like I have never felt it before, not a desire to leave, dominate or avoid it, but to embrace and celebrate it. What can a person do when Death smiles at them but smile back, what is there to fear? I do not have dreams of heaven, but instead I embrace my dissolution into something I could not begin to explain. I can’t wait for the next scene now and I find joy in the moment with fears and desires fading. The past has birthed this moment to have another chance to connect with my source.

So many different names and opinions about the source of life. That is why it must be found in silence beyond words, feelings and what you think. I’m ravenous, not to experience life, but to share the love I feel within that silence with all. I invite you to tune in, step up and out with me. Get messy. I have no idea where this train is going and I could care less, the view is to die for. Well, I might have some idea. There is this amazing other soundtrack to life I’m finding, always on. What is Death, but the ultimate celebration of life! From Gibran’s Sand and Foam:

The first thought of God was an angel.
The first word of God was a man.

You were given the gift of speech, but wait before you speak, consider your words and their power, because when you’re silent the words and visions that come are usually for you. 

Image – Mystical Vision of Death – Alex Grey

Abundance

image.jpeg

In the search
for enlightenment,
there is an ever-present
certainty that there is more to do,
someone else who holds the
secret, another state to
attain.

In the
finding of it,
there is the comical
revelation that not one
of those things was
ever true.

                                   – Wei Wu Wei

A Dervish Story – Tale of the Three Questions

1-dervish-bebe-brookman

A certain Sultan owned everything a man could wish for and still he did not know the purpose of life. The answer to three questions made his life difficult:

1. What should I do?
2. With which people should I do the things God asks me to do?
3. When should I do it?

The Sultan asked the advice of all kinds of wise people, and then he was told that there was a Chishti dervish, who lived far away, and who might give him a satisfactory answer. The Sultan immediately left and after a journey of several weeks he met the dervish. The dervish was cultivating his own land. He was a simple man, but no simpleton, as he was reciting a Persian quatrain over and over again:

Kaarist waraai ‘elm raw aanraa baash
Dar bande gohar mabaash raw kaan raa baash
Del hast maqaame gaah begozaar o biaa
Jaan manzele aakherast raw jaan raa baash .

There is a work beyond knowledge, realise that, go!
Do not work to get jewels, be the mine, go!
The heart is a temporary abode, leave it and come!
The soul is the final abode, realise that, go!

The Sultan was however not interested in Persian poems and asked his three questions to the dervish. The dervish did not answer him and continued with his work. The Sultan became angry and said: “Don’t you know who I am. I am the Sultan of Sultans”. But this did not make any impression as well and the dervish continued doing what he was doing.

A heavily wounded man suddenly appeared and he dropped to the ground in front of the dervish. The dervish said to the Sultan: “Help me to carry this man to my place!” “I’ll help you,” the Sultan said, “but will you answer my questions afterwards?”

“Later!” the dervish said and together they brought the wounded man to the hut of the dervish and took care of him.

“And now I’d like to receive the answers to my questions,” the Sultan said. “You can return to your palace,” the dervish said, “because you have already received the answers to your questions. As to what to do, you should do what comes to you on your path. As to with whom you should do it, the answer is with those who are present. And as for the when to do it, you should do it the moment it takes place”.

This is the way it is with ancient truth, always chiding us to focus on the here and now. Perhaps that is a clue. I see the great beauty, hard work and gritty truth of the Sufi path and it resonates very deeply with me. I imagine myself a Dervish on some dark road with just my wits and what I have on my back with me, alone but never alone. I desired to know their ecstatic experience of the Divine in my everyday life and then I realized as I admired the beautiful green covered mountain to the East during a quiet moment, I had found it.

Image – Dervish – Bebe Brookman

A Dervish Story about Reality

sufism___istanbul

I am continually amazed as I learn about how other cultures view themselves across time and how similar their hopes, fears and dreams are to my own and my generation’s. There is not much new under the sun it seems. Every generation grapples with its mortality and shares its hopes and fears to try to provide some illumination or warning perhaps to the generations to come.

I have hopes and fears too. I set them aside in my life and I have accepted my place in a world and reality much bigger than the one I can sense. Much bigger than myself. I know I am limited in my awareness, so I assume I know nothing fully. I accept and know that my awareness stretches beyond my senses in ways I can not consciously understand. That makes life mysterious and mystical for me, which I need. So I am not totally agnostic, nor do I totally believe or know anything. I am a swirling mix of sense, memory, emotion, mind, heart and something more I can’t put my finger on.

Across the eons I see a golden thread that binds our religions, myths and traditions together. It is a message of hope, love, acceptance and embracing of one another in our difference. It challenges you to look beneath the surface of things and to be ever mindful of the intention you use to manifest these hopes, dreams and fears that can overwhelm us. I have my experience from which to view all of this and I am compelled to seek others’ perspective as well. You can clearly see the forces that sought to separate and those that brought men together across history. I am throwing my lot in with the dreamers and the those that seek to remove the separations and walls between each other. This Dervish story speaks of much respect across religions and an appreciation for the common dreams we all share no matter our race or creed. I know in the end Love is the only thing that is real and the creeds of man will be shown to be the stepping stones that they are.

The People Who Attain

– from Idries Shaw’s Tales of the Dervishes

Imam el-Ghazali relates a tradition from the life of Isa ibn Maryam(Jesus).

Isa one day saw some people sitting miserably on a wall, by the roadside. He asked: ‘What is your affliction?’

They said: ‘We have become like this through our fear of hell.’

He went on his way, and saw a number of people grouped disconsolately in various postures by the wayside. He said: ‘What is your affliction?’

They said: ‘Desire for Paradise has made us like this.’

He went on his way, until he came to a third group of people. They looked like people who had endured much, but their faces shone with joy. Isa asked them: ‘What has made you like this?’

They answered: ‘The Spirit of Truth. We have seen Reality, and this has made us oblivious of lesser goals.’

Isa said: ‘These are the people who attain. On the Day of Accounting these are they who will be in the Presence of God.’

Commentary

Those who believe that spiritual advancement depends upon the cultivation of reward and punishment themes alone have often been surprised by this Sufi tradition about Jesus.

Sufis say that only certain people benefit through powerful dwelling upon gain or loss; and that this, in turn, may constitute only a part of anyone’s experiences. Those who have studied the methods and effects of conditioning and indoctrination may feel themselves inclined to agree with them.

To the World Soul

image.jpeg

Anima Mundi
My sweet love
My constant source
Overflowing stream
Light eternal shining
I live in your grace
Oh what amazing love
Just as I AM I come
I receive All as you have
Received me
I am amazed by your endless
Patience and hand in my life
Where fear and regret reined
Now there is goodness and kindness
And compassion and love for the
One to my left and right
I understand now
I was to learn to love my self
In every thing that shares
My space and breathes my air
Oh how you knit me
Together so beautifully
With golden thread
Where I saw a failure
You saw hope
I feel your eyes on me
And your pleasure
I feel my value
The value of All
Thank you for the gift
Of knowledge and awareness
Oh the house you have built for
Us here and now
I promise with all my heart
To always be ready to reach
My hand out for another
Thank you for exposing my heart
And removing my fear
Thank you for my life
Thank you for the chance
To be here and now