“If a person wishes to be sure of the road they tread, they must close their eyes and walk in the dark.”
– From St. John of the Cross, who also coined the phrase “the dark night of the soul.”
“All knowing arises from the unknown.”
– Adyashanti
“If you can’t beat fear, do it scared.”
– Pete Ward (a rock climbing friend from my 20’s)

It’s the spring time here in New England and in Chinese Medicine Philosophy this is the wood phase of the 5 element cycle, a time to start something new, it’s time to rise up and begin. It is an auspicious time to take the first steps because it’s like you are jumping into a wheel that is already turning. All of nature is stirring with the force that pushes the first green stem, bud, beginning of a leaf, and individual expression of each unique plant through the earth and reaches it toward the sunlight, to bring what was once just a dream, into fruition. It is a time to turn the dream into a vision and make the “to-do” list so that what lives inside of our hearts comes into material form. It is a time for plans and decisions.

It is also a big opportunity to do some healing so that this process is possible for us. So often it’s not about the reaching of a goal, but more about finding the key and opening the door. One of my favorite authors, Ezra Bayda, writes that courage is not the eradication of fear, but it is the willingness to feel fear. It is about increasing our ability to find a way forward even with the fear (or doubt, shame, vulnerability, embarrassment etc.) to breathe with it, move with it, allow it. When things don’t turn out the way we had hoped or planned, there can be a feeling of disappointment and I keep noticing that and feeling the allure of shutting down, despairing, and sinking back into the safety of the way things have been. This is the “pivot point” the moment of choice, if we can become conscious of it… There is an infamous gall bladder point at the back of the greater trochanter / hip called the pivot point that, if the tissue is restricted there, will not allow the femur to rotate in the hip very well, literally restricting our ability to change direction. The emotional and spiritual meaning of this is inside our ability to change direction in order to re-route into the direction of the greatest growth… So here I am at the crossroads asking myself if I am seeing clearly? Is my vision working? Is my perspective and perception open minded or am I somehow seeing through the lens of the past? (Failures, rejections etc..) I am asking myself where the opportunity is? Like, if the universe is conspiring for me, what’s the lesson here? What direction do I put my energy towards? The thought that life is working out for us is at least as true as the thought that life isn’t working out for us… but one yields more curiosity, growth and healing and the other yields more shutting down and defensive patterns….

With a vision we can have an idea about getting to an end result… like a permanent state of happiness and a house in Shangri La, but I think that if we are shooting for that, we can start to wage a war on any inconvenient emotion that doesn’t fit our image of the master or the enlightened one…in doing that we push a lot of stuff into the shadow / out of our conscious identity and self awareness… so at some point we realize pushing these orphans out doesn’t make them go away, we just get better at trying to control it… but the controlling is really ceaseless striving and totally unsustainable because… these orphaned ones keep coming back in…. Then there is surrender, this very important piece of clarity comes in, like it’s not about removing them, it’s about welcoming them in and through dancing with them we find our way. It’s not about perfecting ourself until we are loveable, it’s about loving what is, which includes all the apparent deficiencies, faults and problems. Through this dance, we work to increase our window of tolerance, and as our tolerance goes up, our channels open to allow us to feel more… with that, we often realize that these uncomfortable feelings are not dangerous. There is no danger here. So now we are on a new path, we are stepping into unknown territory, we are growing and moving forward, possibility opened for us, life opened up for us… and it was an adjustment on the inside that allowed the outside to change.

So this spring I am offering Foundation Training series and as the Winter series ends and this next round is about to begin, I’ve been totally scared!  My mind circles around worries like, will enough people sign up? If I commit to this thing, am I doomed to fail? Will everyone leave and this whole thing slowly grind to a halt and in the process, will I go broke? Is my vision worth rising for? Will I pick up the key, put it in the door knob, turn the knob and open the door and walk on this path even with the risk of failure? Rejection? Do I have the courage to open the door?
In a recent recording of Chani Nicholas speaking about my astrology she said, “In theater there is a saying that ‘the craft has to be enough.’ It’s not about the public attention or getting the job because, as an artist, so much of life is about rejection so the very act of doing the thing, has to be enough if you are going to make it long term. If the craft is no longer enough, we have to develop our talents in a new way, whether or not the world notices. Ask yourself, if you were to spend the next two years on what you are doing, would this be enough? For you? As a human, as a soul, as a creator, would this craft, with the building of it, shaping of it, studying of it, be enough? Would it fill you on a deep level? Would it fill you individually?”
AND… my offering is meant to break the mold and be loud and disruptive in the ways that are the greatest service to me, but also, to my industry and to the world at large… because, “individual self-expression is only meaningful when others in the group or culture can relate to it. We may not know what our individual purpose on this Earth is, but the gift of the Wood phase is to urge us to strive equally for our own well-being and for that of other life forms which share or create our environment; only with this balance of emphasis is our survival ensured.”
– Carola Beresford Cook: Shiatsu Practice and Theory
I feel really clear that this craft is enough and that it fills me as an individual. My continued personal growth and understanding of the body is getting greater daily and at a rate I didn’t know was possible. It has also been affecting my bodywork practice and the shiatsu treatments have been getting more and more epic. I also feel really clear on the incredibly meaningful time I have been having sharing in my classes it as I watch others relate, find well-being and feel their bodies & lives transforming from this work. So, would it be enough? My answer is YES!!! YESSSSSSS!!!!!
So, please join me this spring in these series and if you don’t join me in the Foundation Training classes, please join me in taking the first steps in a direction towards the greatest personal growth, or the renewed commitment of continued steps toward a vision worth rising for.