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It’s been some time since my last post and it seems that a lot has happened in the last month or so. Of particular note is that a great teacher has been ‘thrust’ upon the world stage; Ekhart Tolle has been collaborating with Oprah Winfrey on a weekly Webcast that’s scheduled for ten weeks. It’s an unprecedented event in many respects. The basis of the event is Eckhart Tolle’s book, “A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose”. It’s difficult not to see this as being a significant event in the context of the spiritual or consciousness evolution of the planet.

Oprah Winfrey has become such a major force of inspiration for so many people that I am so very happy that she has taken this latest step in her quest to help as many people as possible given her position, resources, and estimable character. I only wish that others in the media spotlight and of the financial means would take advantage of them for the good of all – rather than the good of the one. Oprah Winfrey is raising-the-bar for many celebrities and setting an example for us all. These facts will surely be her most significant and lasting legacy.

March 20th was the vernal equinox or the first day of Spring and with the season’s change I am inclined towards thoughts of potential or the future. Remaining grounded in the moment is difficult for me during this period. I’ve noticed a pattern in my life since having begun diligently practicing yoga that the transition from Winter to Spring is the most difficult for me. My body just wants to seize-up and I find it a challenge just to get out of bed in the morning. I usually get sick around this time as well – as I am right now while writing this post. I’m traditionally laid-low by a nasty cold or flu-like bug around this time of year. I always think it’s related to the crazy temperature fluctuations of the Northeast exacerbated by even crazier fluctuations inside the old NYC buildings I typically work in. I can go from freezing cold to out-and-out sweating several times a day – and that’s even when I’m feeling well. So, much of my thoughts are geared towards ‘fair weather days’ in the literal as well as the figurative senses.

Spring is the time of awakening from the 'slumber' of Winter. Its coming heralds the change of the landscape and this change reverberates throughout our lives and throughout our consciousness. It is the proverbial time of new beginnings and of being reborn. Never in my life have I been so aware of this shift. And it’s reflective of the fact that never in my life have I been so aware in general. Seeing change as it comes-and-goes, actually experiencing it, feeling it, and then having it pass – all the while remaining aware of the phenomena is a significant step. The next and more difficult step is to not be attached to the experience. That’s the trick isn’t it? Yes, indeed.

The tool that I’ve come to believe in with regard to attachments to experiences – attachments to the outcomes of change – is intention. If I am able to visualize a particular outcome and create an intention for a particular outcome, then I can ‘put it out there’ (in a myriad of ways) and then simply let them go. This is my exercise around attachment. As Eckhart Tolle and many of the spiritual masters tell us, present moment awareness is the only true place of being. So, we must each find our own ways to keep ourselves grounded in the moment, but not completely shut-off from skillfully living into our dreams and aspirations.

During this phase or transition, I’ve noticed that events in my life have seemingly sped-up to a great degree. It’s as if things that have laid dormant have all-of-the-sudden burst forth or otherwise come to fruition or resolution (or close to it). I’ve been told on good authority that things are speeding up for me, but I feel it’s true for all of us. My task is to just try to be the best person that I can be, do the absolute best that I can, and to be open to alternative points-of-view.

I want so much to be able to help others. This generalization is difficult to explain, but it is represented in multiple ways or examples in my life: I want to help Dana and I buy a house in the country or by the ocean, I want to help myself heal old wounds and live as a completely authentic being, I want to help my family and friends in any way that is needed, I want to help my immediate family (Dana, Lefty and I) live our lives in such a way that promotes peace, health, happiness and prosperity, I want to help inspire others to look deep within themselves for the answers that seem to always elude them, I want to help leave our dear Mother Earth a better place than when I came here, I want to help catapult the evolutionary shift in human consciousness to the next level. Baba Ram Dass explained it best when he says, “My karma is my dharma; meaning that what my life is presenting me with is the vehicle through which I can become free.” He explains further that his particular path is one of service or of that of a karma yogi. And Baba Ram Dass has been of great, great service to us all.

I want to end this post with a mention of another of my great teachers and inspirations, Terence McKenna. He is probably my greatest teacher in that he has inspired my thinking and my desire for empirical knowledge in terms of spirituality and human consciousness (my own consciousness) more than any other human being. I take great joy in hearing his archived words (props to Lorenzo at The Psychedelic Salon) and am constantly amazed at his seemingly bottomless wellspring of wisdom, courage, compassion, humor, and vision. I wish he was still among us. He was in my humble opinion, one of the most brilliant thinkers of our time – and probably the most important for the evolution of our species. A giant among giants. If I am to be ‘awakened’ one fine day, it is with all due credit to unsung heroes such as him.

OM Shantih,


Just be open – you are guided

Lord, I know not what I ought to ask of thee;
Thou only knowest what I need;
Thou lovest me better than I know how to love myself.
O Father, give to Thy child that which
he himself knows not how to ask.
I dare not ask either for crosses or for consolations;
I simply present myself before thee,
I open my heart to Thee.
Behold my needs which I know not myself;
see and do according to Thy tender mercy.
Smite, or heal;
depress me or raise me up;
I adore all Thy purposes without knowing them;
I am silent;
I offer myself in sacrifice;
I yield myself to Thee:
I would have no other desire than to accomplish Thy will.
Teach me to pray.
Pray Thyself in me.
- François de Salignac Fenelon,
Archbishop of Cambray, 1651­-1715, AD

My closest, greatest teacher (Abdi Assadi) has to constantly remind me of this fact (posting title) but I’ve struggled with the idea of it my entire life. More-and-more I look at myself and see the problems with my mind – the way it works – the ‘monkey mind’ as it were. It’s extremely difficult NOT to be your own greatest obstacle/enemy, especially when you have significant ‘childhood woundings’, caretaker tendencies, and self-esteem issues that you’re working through.

I recently came across the Web site for Steve Pavlina and specifically his blog posting for working with intentions:

Steve says, “Whatever you imagine with enough energy will eventually manifest. If your thoughts are clear and focused, you’ll manifest your desires relatively quickly and easily. If your thoughts are jumbled and chaotic, you’ll manifest a seemingly random and haphazard life for yourself.”

Also well put was, “Regardless of whether I think the universe is objective or subjective, I know that my dominant thoughts are the key determinants of my results in life. My thoughts control my decisions, and my decisions over time control my results. When I really understood that, I assumed a new level of responsibility for every thought that went through my mind. I decided to take conscious control of my thoughts no matter what. I saw that I could no longer afford to have my mind haphazardly dwelling on things I didn’t want.”

I read his posting a couple of times and really appreciated his message. I looked at his biographical information and came to appreciate it even more. It seems that some of us must hit ‘rock-bottom’ before we can begin our ascension. Another teacher of mine (Rolf Gates) said that (and I’m paraphrasing from memory), “I had to be utterly and completely humbled before I was willing to surrender to guidance from a higher power”.

It is an interesting type of masochism that works in me (us?) that wants to continually validate the idea that the universe is conspiring against me or at least ‘deaf’ to our intentions and prayers. I can honestly say that my mind has an unhealthy affinity for gravitating towards the negative. It’s self-sabotage at the level of thought – and these tendencies are the ‘intention killers’ that Steve Pavlina talks about. Every time I think that I can’t do something, I’ll fail at something, something won’t work-out, something will go wrong, I won’t be supported, etc. – that’s EXACTLY what happens. I’ve grown extremely adept at manifesting the things I don’t want because I focus on them at the level of thought MUCH MORE than the things I do. Interesting stuff! I mean, my ego is EXPERT at this – and the ego LOVES being the expert. The great masters tell us that this is the ego mind continually trying to CONTROL everything – and it asserts control by negating the limitless possibilities of the universe. Basically, the mind doesn’t want us to believe that there is another power (other than itself) that is actually in control – another power (the only power) that we’ve forgotten by design – the power we must strive to remember, honor and access.

I remember Myron Stolaroff ( speaking about “being above the line or below the line” in meditation (podcast: - an astoundingly beautiful tribute to Dr. Albert Hoffmann on the occasion of his 100th birthday). My understanding of this concept has a lot to do with the noise of the mind, a kind of ‘thermo cline’ – like barrier that separates realms of thought/being (emptiness/receptivity). If I can remain ‘above the line’ I am in a place where the negative tendencies of the ego mind can’t go – if I fall ‘below the line’, I am at their mercy and lost in suffering.

I am not a good meditator. I do not have a consistent practice. My Ashtanga hatha yoga practice is the type of ‘moving meditation’ that I can easily grasp on a consistent basis because it suits my personality type and perhaps my level of spiritual development. I wish I could do better in this regard. I am too easily distracted. Consistent meditation is too difficult for me. Funny thing about these thoughts – I’ve done it yet again…

OM Shantih,