Contrapuntal Equinox Experiment

Public life these days is so filled with stories that intend to grip the audience – wildly countervailing narrative and dramatic “melodies” all playing at the same time – that it can be a strain to hear one’s own profound song. My sense is that becoming a benevolent and clarified master storyteller, a deliberate singer/songwriter […]

The Light inside the Cave

I became (again?) a cave painter one recent morning, hyper-aware of wanting to inscribe something from deep inside, something from far beyond that would echo through and far beyond me. I was in a new space, in every way: the first spring in a new residence, with a writing chair facing east. In the first […]

An Expression of Pink Trees

I missed it. At least the camera missed it. By the time I realized I wanted to capture the glorious explosion of flowers haloing out from a stand of neighborhood trees, two days had passed and the flowers were turning gray. That was weeks ago, and now it’s a strange mercy: to keep from feeling […]

Degrees of Intimacy … in Words

Fiction-writing is a different beast – thrilling to engage after so much practice in resolving everything into concepts, expressing them, and inviting an audience to ponder and, ideally, agree. I’ve been experimenting with live readings of fictional vignettes to a group of extremely varied listeners. The group was facilitated by long-time fiction fans who expected […]

Significance

After being tossed an opportunity to list the most significant events of my life, I watched the parades of memory march by – different parades on three different passes of the question. My notion of what ‘significant’ means began to crumble. The first pass included the usual suspects: outer events that changed the course of […]

Exper…

I got a sweet little shock when I looked up the etymology of experience and experiment, wondering how they could feel so different while being nearly the same word. Their shared history is adding rich new sensations of fearlessness to daily existence (even to the past and the future, as well as the Now). First, the two exper words: ‘Experience’ […]

A Perfect Score of 42

I found a new way to relax, even feel more creative and awake, when hearing the word ‘perfect’. My mind started chewing on it after two encounters with someone steeped in fashion philosophies: in the first, he announced that painful difficulties reflected the perfection of the moment; in the second, he said he wasn’t perfect. […]

Resolution Means Flow

Fierce determination, popular while January 1 approaches, feels opposite to going with the flow. Yet they can be the same, considered in a certain light. Traditions of beginning again personally on January 1, when the outer calendar begins again, offer rituals for backward reflection and forward vision. If the ritual is superficial – a Procrustean chopping and […]

Midwinter Relativity

          In a vast field of frozen dark-gray slate, a luminous pearlescence blooms above a slow horizon in the southern sky, this silent dawn near solstice. Moments of enchantment pass before the mind remembers: this is the sun, rising in the south. The wakening mind expands: the sun is not rising – this is […]

Sea Legs and Inner Ears

 Waltzing back and forth between the right-brain’s flowing cosmos and the left-brain’s key-tapping to make words, not yet being fully immersed in an all-senses state, I feel a dizziness that brings a memory to the surface, one that resonates across the decades: We’d been on a long sailing trip, eating and sleeping on board, as […]

Five Styles of Conative Mastery

I’d forgotten conatus. A new interpretation of it (below) can make learning and action easier – for anybody mastering (or teaching) new skills and knowledge – or anybody interacting with other people to accomplish something, or creating characters in literature, or optimizing a relationship. It was such a surprise to my pride, that I hadn’t remembered the […]

Speculative Magical Links

Unusual worlds are opening. I’ve been journeying along one of my less-traveled paths, returning to a lifelong love of fantastical stories. Clues to my own emerging voice pop out of page and screen. This post’s trip report has links to a few favorites, some notes on writing and consciousness, and a little peach-flavored magic realism. The […]

Voice II

“If I write that, people will think it’s me.” This quote from Amy Tan, in her spirited TED talk about writing fiction, has been singing to me for days. It struck the place in me that’s so focused on integrity that the idea of representing something that’s not-me, when my name is on it, felt dangerous, […]

Merit in the Marketplace

A phenomenal new wordal popped out of the dictionary this morning: the mer root within merit. Turns out it started as sale value, leading to the Latin meretrix (prostitute) and the English meretricious (attractive in a vulgar way). This surprise led to contemplation of merit badges, merit scholars, meritocracies, certificates of merit, earning merit in religious […]

Alchemical Storytellers

Just finished redesigning a house. A bank account. A host of motives. Woke up this morning knowing my novella’s main character’s circumstances were all wrong for the plot, mismatched for the themes. Switched it around in a great rush. Then rested, wondering where those first images had come from, why they’d felt right before, even […]

Seven-Story Forgiveness

Every word, every thought, changes along the vibrational scale of consciousness, so that its meaning is different depending on the speaker’s intent and the listener’s awareness – creating the sound of different notes and tones with a single word. I wrote about this earlier in relation to ‘gratitude’: in the lowest vibrations, ‘gratitude’ feels like helpless […]

The Animation in Receiving Art

Three second-hand creative raptures in three days. I feel blessed. Sometimes, opening the heart to another’s art is as marvelous as the inspiration to express. Two days ago, I saw an Oscar-nominated short animation that touched something so deep in me, about yearnings to have my writing matter, that I wept (silently) in a crowded […]

Bliss, Fulfillment, Happiness, Passion

Fun to wonder if the apparent convergence of blogs and videos about “find your passion” (links provided below) has been statistically true – or is just a mirror of my own focus. Multiple notes and links led to discussions of this staple of the “consciousness movement” in a compressed time span. Impatient with so many […]

Flicker and Peep

These are the words – flicker and peep – for the play of light and shadow, for the sound of sound, in the felt senses. Waking early, in the cold and dark, feeling a surge to post something more attuned to my deeper life than yesterday’s intellectual outpouring, I notice flames dancing and crackling in […]

Fight, Flight, Freeze, or Flow?

Awoke to a vibration of wistfulness: glad for the relaxed pleasure in encountering everything with soft regard, and glad to feel only a faint rippling awareness of multiple kinds of violence in the world – sprung from conflicts in the news. It was inspiring to notice the ripples without having them compromise basic well-being – […]

The Ever-Morphing Novella (=Life)

Why do I expect to revise my novella after it’s been published? (I hear this is possible with e-books.) It’s already rewritten itself at least four times since it was conceived last summer. The same could be said of me, still experiencing alterations of perception, inspiration, intent, and relationship with life-as-a-work-of-art. Transformation practitioners know about […]

Adaptation: Not Always Second-Hand

Once again, a word-origin is revealing a hidden coherence: ap, which becomes apt, adapt, aptitude, adept and inept. It’s about fittedness, fastening two phenomena, one or both of them in motion. Like dancing: the fittedness being between the music and the body, or between two or more bodies, in spontaneous or rehearsed choreography (on a […]

Creativity’s Hidden Gateways

Several new emails in the past 24 hours have touted creativity programs and ideas. One of this morning’s emails feels like a goad. It was about setting up the day to be about one’s own creativity, versus  checking the incoming mail and web feeds to see what others are doing. Fashionability (attention to what others are doing), can […]

First Wordals

Wordals – as word-portals – evolved in my writing practice as mind-unlocking gateways into higher/deeper states of awareness. Unlocking the traps of words frees the mind into a more vast experience of being alive. (A favorite discovery, for example, was the origin of the word ego, in German, Latin, and English, and its Sanskrit correlates – all described below.) […]

The Nature of Writing and Editing

A velvety pastel lotus blooms, eventually, from a seed case. Bees, in a scouting party for a new home, do a waggle dance to signal their choice of locations. In my universe, this is speech, writing in water and air. In this way of feeling, cave paintings of Lascaux feel newly alive, ancient gematria more shimmering, pictograms […]

Soul-Sense Meditation (notes)

One morning in mid-2011 I experienced a convergence of thirty years’ worth of inner-development techniques, plus – and this is what thrilled me – a  new sequence of inner movement that allowed all the techniques, in combination, to accelerate the clarification of old material, enhance compassionate receipt of its wisdom, and expand a sense of […]

The Opening

Hilariously, I “open” this website – all about being original, alive, and aware, in the moment – with one of the oldest conventions of public speakers, from elementary school onward: the etymology of the title. Turns out it works pretty well. “Open”  is from upo, meaning under, up from under, or over, which aren’t contradictory at […]