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Help is All Around Us

Help is all around us when we have eyes to see. Help definitely does not always come in the form or timing that we want it to. Help does not always rescue us or change our circumstances but help comes to meet us, especially when our internal posture is one of openness and availability. As we all know, there is a lot happening around us personally and globally that is contributing to feeling a general sense of vulnerability and lack of safety for our nervous systems. When our nervous systems are activated, it is difficult, and at times impossible for us to offer the substances needed around us of love, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, mercy, courage, etc. In a regulated state, we want to participate in the whole and bring these substances forth. We also have a tendency to demonize our protective states and stances, viewing them as obstacles in the way. What if our nervous system defense mechanisms are not obstacles in the way, a problem to be solved, something to cure or just move beyond? What if our defense mechanisms are the raw form of something that is necessary for the alchemy of these substances to be released? Often we are blind to our nervous system protective states of fight, flight, freeze, and fawn and so we operate from them un-observed, continuing to perpetuate that which we are trying to protect ourselves from by identifying with the resistance. Un-observed, resistance breeds resistance. These protective mechanisms become problematic when they are emerging with more energy than is warranted for the current situation we are in. This is an indication that they are disoriented states which come from so many areas of conditioning including but not limited to unresolved past experiences that carry pain because they were somehow too much, too fast, and/or there was not enough of the right container in the moment to process it what had happened. In these cases, our pain needs help in order to come back into the whole. Coming back into the whole is what healing is really all about. Its not about fixing anything or curing anything. Sometimes help comes from within, from another living or non-living being, or from God. Allow yourself to be open and available to name your need for help. But don’t stop there. Begin to develop a different type of relationship with your nervous system from an inward posture of wideness and love. There is a place for our nervous system activation, our protective mechanisms. These states are not an issue in and of themselves. We can approach them as an essential piece of our becoming. Not just something to tolerate and work with but the actual fuel for our unfolding. Just like old trains used to burn coal to move along the train track bringing people to their destination, we can begin to view our defenses as fuel to burn in the fire of the heart and move the world along toward love. Let’s allow that fire to burn bright and carry us forward. With love, Heather


Here are most of the Readings from this week's pauses: 'No Upper Story' We are not two-story beings, with a ground floor and an upper story. We live on the ground floor of this body and it is the only story. Notice where the heart is. The heart is in the center of the body. The heart is not on top of the body or above the body, but at the center. When the mind rests in the heart, there is no need to conceive of any other story. There is no above or below: only the radiance of sat-chit-ananda, transcendent being, awareness, bliss, immanent in each particle of the body. And this radiance we call God, yet God's glory shines from the sacred heart of your flesh. The glory of God incarnate has no boundaries. The glory of God incarnate, as You, irradiates other hearts, pervades trees, pebbles, earthworms, mountain, sky, moon and stars. This glory is the light of the sun, yet it rises in your chest. Every sparrow know this and sings about it. Your inner radiance has no edges. You are a cosmic being. You are dust in a sunbeam. You fill the space beyond the farthest galaxy, and yet a starry supernova pulsates in each proton of your little toe. The Milky Way marrows your bones. Your uncreated vastness dissolves all distances. Pain is a stream of electrons flowing through a synapse between two neurons in your brain. Pleasure is a stream of electrons flowing through a synapse between two neurons in your brain. Every electron is the whole sun dissolving into bliss. If you are fully human, fully incarnate, you are at Om in this body. You are foolish and wise and courageous and vulnerable enough to hug each electron of yourself, without naming it "pain" or "pleasure." You don't need another story. No one lives upstairs. Everyone lives down here. Each breath leads you to the palace of this moment. — Alfred K LaMotte 'To Live in the Mercy of God' To lie back under the tallest oldest trees. How far the stems rise, rise before ribs of shelter open! To live in the mercy of God. The complete sentence too adequate, has no give. Awe, not comfort. Stone, elbows of stony wood beneath lenient moss bed. And awe suddenly passing beyond itself. Becomes a form of comfort. Becomes the steady air you glide on, arms stretched like the wings of flying foxes. To hear the multiple silence of trees, the rainy forest depths of their listening. To float, upheld, as salt water would hold you, once you dared. . To live in the mercy of God. To feel vibrate the enraptured waterfall flinging itself unabating down and down to clenched fists of rock. Swiftness of plunge, hour after year after century, O or Ah uninterrupted, voice many-stranded. To breathe spray. The smoke of it. Arcs of steelwhite foam, glissades of fugitive jade barely perceptible. Such passion— rage or joy? Thus, not mild, not temperate, God’s love for the world. Vast flood of mercy flung on resistance. — Denise Levertov “Once I traveled far above the earth. This beloved planet we call home was covered with an elastic web of light. I watched in awe as it shimmered, stretched, dimmed, and shined, shaped by the collective effort of all life within it. Dissonance attracted more dissonance. Harmony attracted harmony. I saw revolutions, droughts, famines, and the births of new nations. The most humble kindnesses made the brightest lights. Nothing was wasted.” — Joy Harjo ‘Bloom’ That which God said to the rose, and caused it to laugh in full-blown beauty, He said to my heart, and it made it a hundred times more beautiful. — Rumi


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