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Overview of this blog

Waking up isn’t for everyone, but for those who have gotten a taste of becoming fully conscious, it is the only game in town.

Be yourself; Everyone else is already taken.

 

— Oscar Wilde.

For most people, the process of becoming fully yourself unfolds very gradually throughout our lives, through lots of hard work. This is how it worked for me for 73 years. Then – at 3 a.m., on Monday, June 26 2019 – many things fell in place at once and I made a 100% commitment to reclaiming my integrity. I was given a gift – and poof! In that moment I became a new person.

Learning to walk the walk and claim the voice of this new person is in itself a gradual process – but I am being unerringly guided by Spirit, and in a very real way it has all become easy.

I have become, in the words of Michael Singer (The Untethered Soul), “unreasonably happy” – and nothing can seem to dent this happiness. I endure the shocks of human life: my checking account is suddenly overdrawn; the chronic pain, sometimes pretty rough, that has been with me for 30 years – and still hasn’t been diagnosed – is still there; a friend is in the midst of great pain and I go there with them (actually more acutely than ever before). But happiness always sits in the background and is the baseline to which I always return.

I have for thirty years been diagnosed as having Bipolar Disorder (see my blog Bipolar Integrity). My energy still cycles powerfully up and down, but words like “bipolar”, “manic” or “depressed” no longer apply to me and I will not use them to describe myself.  I am returning to the comfortingly descriptive, non-psychiatric words I have used for years: “expanded” and “contracted”.  These I can live with. 

I have become convinced that I was always misdiagnosed, that I was actually having a “spiritual emergency” (Stanislav Grof, in his book The Stormy Search for Self.)

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Stanislav Grof

which no one recognized or knew how to support or guide. This crisis, rather than being treated with reverence as the sacred process it was, was “treated” with psychotropic drugs that snowed me and kept this sacred process from ever resolving.

(I myself was trained as a Ph.D. clinical psychologist and worked in the field for 20 years; while I was in some ways an especially awake psychotherapist, all that psychology training finally made it harder for me to truly “wake up”.  I have been very supported lately by the Asheville Center for Spiritual Emergence.)

For a while, I was confused by the fact that my waking up process does not look like that of some of my role models: I do not consistently come from a place that looks like peace and love like Thich Nhat Hanh or the Dalai Lama. My “new person” has a sharp edge – more like Byron Katie or Fritz Perls, two of the big influences of my life. (And truly, even Thich Nhat Hanh – my teacher for four years – also has a ferocious side, as I saw revealed when the U.S was preparing to go to war in Iraq.)

I readily tell people truths – or reflect them back to themselves – in ways that they seem unready to hear. I can be ferocious at times, will raise my voice – will look and sound very angry (even if, in at least some of these situations, I actually feel completely peaceful inside). This “new person” sometimes shocks my friends, who have always thought of me as a “nice person”. When someone around me (even my customer in the grocery store checkout line) is being harmed or threatened, I can suddenly become “an avenging angel – a sword of truth”.

The political situation in our country – with Donald Trump and the forces of reaction, separation and hate – remains profoundly disturbing and I feel committed (required) to finding the right ways (as Spirit guides me) to be involved and try to make a difference, to take our country back. Thich Nhat Hanh was a pioneer of “engaged Buddhism” during the war in Vietnam – where he and his order of monks worked heroically to put that war to an end – and remains in this area of my mission a role model.

220px-Thich_Nhat_Hanh_in_Vietnam
“Thay” (“Teacher”) with some of his students

And I am more loving than ever before – love that has integrity and truth and often great gentleness.

Fifteen years ago, I wrote a book – as yet unpublished, but soon – called Radical Integrity: Reflective Stories for Reclaiming Your Self. There are some real gems in that book – I was already on the path, and some of those chapters will turn up here. There were times that I would show up with great integrity and even courage. But I had not yet undergone “the change” – I had not become integrity, I still basically had no clue who I really was.

Whether your process of claiming your integrity is very gradual or whether you, like me, have had – or soon do have – your own moment of “waking up” (and this moment is happening to more and more people), my wish is that the words and stories in the blog will give you encouragement, inspiration, maybe sometimes guidance, and maybe sometimes excitement.

For more information about what led up to my breakthrough and what followed it, you can read the Page “Waking up: a tale of depression, integrity, assertiveness and good boundaries”.

Become a part of this community of waking up. Subscribe to the blog. Add your voice in the Comments section after each blog post. Write me. I want to be here for you.

Being with Majo

Congratulations on opening this page!

You have taken a first step towards opening yourself to a new life. Regardless of whether you ever choose to take advantage of any of the services offered on this page, this is a genuine step towards being with yourself more fully. You probably never can go fully back.

“Being with Majo” (A.k.a. Dr. John Madden, a.k.a. Dr. Footloose) is actually code for being with yourself. If you had an experience with something that Majo said to you or wrote that stirred you to look at this page, that was probably because some part of your life had been stirred.

At his best, Majo pretty much gets himself out of the way – and what comes through him is coming from the world of Spirit. So you got a call from the world of Spirit – which is nothing else than who you actually are.

You have gotten and answered those calls before. They are probably coming to you more strongly and more insistently these days. Answering those calls in this moment may or may not involve some form of “being with Majo”. He is just a guy – someone that Life put in your path to bump you in a useful direction.

At this point you can either set Majo aside and just keep on moving, following the calls of your own soul – or you may explore the idea of letting Majo play a part in your next steps.

“Being with Majo” usually starts with a two-hour session – though you can choose to make that session shorter. It’s possible that after five minutes of sitting or standing with Majo, you will have gotten what you needed. “Thanks Majo, have a great day!“ And off you go!

Unless it’s particularly cold outside, “sessions“ with Majo usually take place outdoors – virus or no virus. That could happen in a sidewalk café or bar, walking in your neighborhood, sitting in your backyard or on a forest path or on a mountaintop. (Majo especially recommends sessions in the western North Carolina Blue Ridge Mountains, especially around Burnsville or Bakersville.)

All of your sessions with Majo will especially revolve around you tuning into the subtle promptings from your soul. After months of searching to find a place where his phone receives even one bar of signal in the North country, module likes to talk about getting a “signal from God“ or from nature – which is to him essentially the same as saying God.

(More content to come about what might go on in a session – but in short there is absolutely no predicting and it all comes from you with maybe a little coaching or support from Majo.)

All of Majo’s sessions are offered on a “love offering” basis. Immediately or shortly after the session, you drop him a “tip“ of something that you can afford and that feels right to you – based on the value you experienced in the session.

Some of the people with whom Majo spends time “being” have deep pockets – and basically subsidize people who live in hot unless income.

Some people express their gratitude for the session with home-cooked food, flowers from their garden, time spent helping Majo in his garden and other things.

Each of these sessions gives Majo an equal chance to fully “Be” – and he doesn’t consider them to be actually work at all. And he makes pretty good money with other consulting and teaching activities.

For more details on Majo’s background, you can go to

Or read his personal blog: “Waking Up“, majowakingup.com – or his blog describing his four years working as a cashier in a healthy grocery store (Earth Fare, which was for 45 years a much beloved supermarket chain in the Southeast), “Real life in the checkout line: helping life happen in a grocery store”, rlcol.com.

“The mountains are calling and I must go.” (John Muir)


Imagine that you had been sentenced to solitary confinement in your own house – for months! I know, it’s a wacky concept – but work with me here, maybe it could happen.


Imagine at the same time that you are so isolated and so limited in your life options that not just you, but the entire human species is at the same time fearful for its very life – fearful for its very physical existence.


Imagine that at the same time your poor wonderful American country is beset by controversy and division and rancor and fear and anger such it has not seen for a long, long time.


What might you need at such a time?


What might help you recover from all this pain and fear and stress and limitation? What might help your spirit come back strong? How might you recover your personal power and vision and clarity and confidence about the future.


Perhaps the Mountains would be calling you – the enchanted, super-green temperate forest rain forest woods of the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina.


You really need to see these woods to know how fully mother nature has come back. With the planet having rested for several months – with less action and less air pollution – life as adorned these woods of the Carolina Mountains with a richer, fuller, deeper green than anyone around here can remember.


Come drink the green. Inhale the green. Take a long luxurious peaceful bath in the green. Let the enchanted forest take over the controls and drive your brain for a while.


Perhaps you would need or want activities that would challenge and inspire you – that would stretch you, that would give you vision.


Perhaps you would need to get actually up above the forest canopy, safely harnessed to a zip line – and fly from one mountain to the next!


Perhaps for a whole day – or maybe two – in this way leaving your fears behind you in the mountains. It could get you ready for whatever is coming next for you in your life.


Perhaps the mountains are calling you. Only you can know. Be still and listen.

With Jenn Garrett – Jubilee as “The Nest” that has supported our amazing friendship for 13 years.

On Valentine’s Day a couple of years ago, Jen Garrett and I offered Jubilee Community a poem about how much we love each other. She had not written a poem since high school. I had never written a poem with somebody else. But this poem was totally co-created.

Jenn is super-smart and resourceful. In a recent job as the admin person for an alternative school, many parents and faculty said that she was the one who held that place together.

She is also totally adorable and charming, and a very outspoken voice about childhood cancer during her 7 year old daughter Shayla’s several-year battle with cancer. She also has a real shy side and seldom seeks the limelight. But it was she who suggested that we should tell the people of Jubilee the story of our amazing friendship, which continues to sustain both of us.

I’m the one who – through most of his life – has been described as a “truth-teller”. But it was Jenn who – after our first rehearsal with this poem – going through the first draft – came back a week later and said “It’s not real enough. We have to go deeper.”

Nope! No real “mental health challenges” for the last nine months or so. A couple of situational challenges, but mostly I’ve been having a pretty great time!

It came to my attention today, from one of my friends on the Jubilee Prayer Chain, that some pretty seriously misleading information about me had gone out to that group – ideas that had the unfortunate power to unnecessarily disturb and worry the people on that list.
This post is kinda long – and includes links to several other blog posts – but I am feeling a need to reassure Jubilee friends who might right now be worrying about me.

The person who said to that list something like that I was experiencing “mental health challenges” certainly had not talked with me about it – or to my best friend and friend of Jubilee Tom Kilby (who has been in very close phone connection with me over the last few days). https://rlcol.com/2019/10/22/tom-kilby-a-hero-of-customer-service/

They had certainly had not spoken to my very wonderful new friend and blues guitar master Eric Freeman.(https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Musician/Eric-Freeman-aka-The-Blue-Ridge-Boy-105752814194017/) I took Eric into my apartment 11 days ago, so he wouldn’t have to be homeless while he tried to ship to a recording company “100 original blues songs” – which could potentially pay him royalties for years in the future (he has shown me the ten-page contract).

This enormously challenging and stressful two weeks (just three months after arriving in Asheville from New Orleans, seeking – like so many of us – a “fresh start” here) has included Eric simultaneously preparing for his big gig tomorrow night at the White Horse Black Mountain (https://www.facebook.com/events/545637376163163/), where he opens for Abby the Spoon Lady – who in the last year has gone from an impoverished Asheville street busker to a national celebrity, featured in the New York Times and PBS. She is apparently about to move back home to Kansas and this may be the last chance – for quite a while at least – to catch her in a live local performance. Come on out tomorrow night at 7:30 to catch this very exciting show.

They had not spoken to my last psychiatrist, who released me from her care two months ago after helping me – over the course of six months – wean myself off of the very potent cocktails of psychotropic drugs I had been taking for over thirty years. In our last session, she very sadly acknowledged that the psychiatric diagnosis I had been given over thirty years ago was probably all a terrible mistake. “They gave you that diagnosis when you were in the middle of a huge life crisis that included the sudden return of memories of a four year history of childhood sex abuse. These days we never would give anyone a psychiatric diagnosis when there is so much chaos in their personal life – you just can’t know what really is going on. I’m afraid they got it wrong.” (https://majowakingup.com/2019/12/18/its-good-to-have-that-30-years-over/)

They had not talked to the LCSW psychotherapist I have seen every week for the last 12 weeks. She had said to me 12 weeks ago, “You are gradually weaning yourself off of the powerful drugs you took for 30 years – and you are ‘unreasonably happy’, happy with no apparent reason, just happy to be alive. We are trained to look for any sign of mania in this case, because many years ago your diagnosis was changed from ‘clinical depression’ to ‘bipolar disorder’. So I will be working to ‘rule out’ mania.” I told her in that first session that I knew she would have to watch for any sign of mania – and only asked of her that she would listen fully and carefully to me, keep an open mind and ‘stay curious’.

On those grounds, we began our work – and in twelve weeks, she has never seen anything that looked like mania. “You think very fast and often talk fast – I can understand why you say you feel more at home in New York City than anywhere else. Certainly very fast for the old coot that you are. But you also are extraordinarily and ferociously grounded, you have all these moments of deep peace, you act slowly and deliberately and purposefully – and have an amazing, powerful presence.” She used the same words that the psychiatrist had used: “I’ve never seen anything like this.” I gave her the same response I gave the psychiatrist. “I’m an anomaly.”

I take no personal credit for any of this. I had massive bouts of suicidal depression last spring – which ended in me, more than ever before in my life, completely giving up hope for my life and absolutely letting go.

At the moment I most fully let go, I had a sudden, unexpected and unbidden experience of “waking up” (walking my sick dog Panchita down Patton Avenue, exactly at the back door of Jubilee, at 3 a.m. on Monday, June 26). This kind of experience makes no logical sense, but the friends and therapists who have been closest to me in the last nine months agree that – like me – they can come up with no other reason why I have for the last nine months been non-stop “unreasonably happy”, no longer fear anybody or anything, have radically let go of any need for approval, why i am vastly more loving than ever before, even funnier than ever before, why I encounter no strangers on the streets of my neighborhood downtown, why I validate people with greater-than-ever power and intuitive precision. You can read about my “waking up” here (https://majowakingup.com/) and my “second initiation” here (https://majowakingup.com/2019/12/21/the-second-initiation/).

I will soon write up more information about the extraordinary events of the last week, which yes have included punching a virulently racist neighbor who attempted to humiliate my friend Eric by saying “What are you doing around here, boy? You don’t belong here, boy.” I took this action not just out of anger (of which I had plenty), but out of a shrewd calculation that this was the only way to stop Eric from reclaiming his dignity by beating this 5’6″ ignorant white boy up. Eric is 6’4″, in his own words “strong as an ox” and black. I knew that the justice system would probably go easier on me than him – and, in the run-up to his big show tomorrow, he needed to be home practicing his songs and shipping songs to his recording company, not sitting in jail.

I was arrested and go to court in April for an assault charge. The Asheville cops were uniformly wonderful – what a special town. They had obviously never arrested anyone who was so happy about what he had just done or about being arrested – and we all had a really good time together.

When they were leading me, in handcuffs, down the Battery Park steps to their squad car, my dear friend Paula Hanke just happened to be coming out of the Grove Arcade – where I had earlier confided to her what I intended to do, to her horror. “Aren’t you afraid? Why are you laughing?” “Because I think the whole thing is both dangerous – and totally funny, I actually find most everything funny these days, maybe especially my own foibles.”

I yelled out in glee at the site of her, “Paula! Paula! Have you got your camera? I want this for my scrapbook! Officers, is it OK if she takes pictures?” “OK, but just two – we have paperwork to do on you.”

I know that this story lies outside the life experience of most of us. I certainly have only heard of this kind of thing in famous people like Thich Nhat Hanh and Eckhart Tolle, but I have come to understand that all around us, many people are starting to “wake up” – I guess because our country and the planet need them more than ever.

I will try to put up here more information about all this tonight – or maybe in the morning (or maybe later – I’m starting to get pretty tired. But I want to get something up here now, to try to head off some of my Jubilee friends going to bed with pain in their heart over me.

Image may contain: 1 person, sitting

The current fantasy: Majo Productions – “Dancing with your friends”

Take that stuck life-kundalini energy that has been pooling in your lower chakras and move it up to your higher energy centers – where you can start to experience an Energetic Kundalini Connection (EKC).

Or, in another vernacular, “Get down, boogey-oogey-oogey! It’s fun! It will make you feel good! You will have a good time dancing with your friends”.pile-up

I have long been known in my circle of friends – and Facebook “friends” – for my gift and passion and genuine mission for getting people together and for throwing good parties…and lately especially dance parties.

People keep asking me, “When are you going to have another party?”  Well, now that I have let go of my day job and have time on my hands – and additional need for fun times with my friends – why not throw more parties?  Why not make a business out of it and make a little money off it, too? (Pay off those red-hot Ultimate Ear Bluetooth speakers.  Sorry, my wonderful DJ friends. I know there are things you could do better, but now – thanks to Pandora playlists and relatively cheap Bluetooth speakers, I am the stinking DJ.)

This caper is still in its early stages.  I first had the idea two days ago, and spent all of my walking/boogeying time yesterday feverishly creating Pandora playlists.

I seldom just walk down the street any more.  I don’t walk my dog – I dance my dog.  When I recently lost my iPhone headset, I didn’t miss a beat: I dropped my new little $40 Alan’s Pawn Shop Bluetooth speaker in my big, deep coat pocket and kept on dancing. That system is maybe slightly clumsier, but has the real advantage that other people on the street can hear the music I am jamming to – and even on occasion get down themselves.

It’s going to be a little tough when the weather turns warm and I don’t have that big pocket to drop my speaker in.  I probably will just go back to my boombox up on my shoulder.  It’s really a pretty great look – especially up on my roller skates, which make me a couple inches taller.  Don’t laugh, guys – the chicks (and some guys) are crazy about it.  girl with boombox

Venues are still in play: I have several on my shortlist (most of them in easy walking distance of my downtown apartment!). I’m especially targeting places that have a lot of space and (most of them) don’t usually offer bands or dancing.  Places that might welcome a once-a-month infusion of new people.  And would be happy to keep a poster in their window.

Time slots: I’m aiming for two or three evenings, weekday or weekend – and two day-time slots, one Friday afternoon (“start your weekend early”) and one Saturday morning.

Musical genre’s:

  • I definitely want 60’s dance music for the Friday afternoon venue – the music me and my little 8th-grade friends danced to after school in 1960 (and, ok, also in high school ’60-64 and college ’64-68 – literally the “Big Chill” class, they were my people too). Kids dancing together. PNG - JPG and vector EPS (infinitely scal
  • I have island music/reggae in mind for a Caribbean restaurant I want to target.
  • Other possibilities, according to the preferences of my friends (y’all) and venue proprietors: 70’s music, 80’s music, R&B “soul music“, funk – and just general awesome dance music of any genre. 
  • “EKC” music: energetic kundalini connection” – a mix of inspirational and/or metaphysical dance music (think Amy Steinberg and shit like that), steamy-sexy music and just red-hot dance songs.
  • If anybody really has a hard-on for country music and wants to push the idea real hard, they can just go ahead and bite me.

Dance with your friends!  This whole idea came out of my love for getting friends together and dancing with them.  Watch for my story about me and my 8th grade classmates escaping at 3 p.m. each day from the clutches of our evil nun Sr. Ignatius, gathering at the local soda shop, plugging some quarters in the juke box – and dancing away our stress and trauma.  This never actually happened, except in my fantasies – every night, as I did use it to melt away stress and move towards sleep.

But now this fabulous healing dancing with my friends does happen!  At Asheville Movement Collective and 5 Rhythms “ecstatic dances”, at my annual birthday party blow-outs in the beautiful penthouse Roof Garden downtown here at Battery Park Apartments.

And now – in this caper – on a bigger scale: more often, more friends, even more fun if that is possible.  Bring your friends!  Make new friends! Come out and dance frequently, so – like at Cheers – everyone will know your name!

old guys

$10 at the door.
Day-time all-ages dance parties: under 16 half-price, under 5 free.  (Maybe childcare at one venue I am going to approach.)
Buy a ten-dance card and save $5!

Suggest music to me: red-hot dance tracks, music that inspires you and makes you happy, songs that you love to dance to with your friends – or have always wanted to.  Leave a Comment here or email/text/or Facebook message, maybe sending the song to me directly from Spotify or Pandora.  (And maybe also to your Facebook friends – you can all start dancing to it early.)  Check out my playlists on Spotify (heymajo).
– heymajo@gmail.com
– 828-582-9822
https://www.facebook.com/heymajo

Let me know if you want me to keep you on my list of people who are hot to hear about this fabulous real fantasy as it develops!

When my energy body turns down (Saturday, 12/28)

What do I do when my energy body which for six months was mostly pure light turns suddenly but then also progressively to mostly lead?

This is the predicament I seem to find myself in. During the first week after my precipitous energy downturn 17 days ago, it looked like it was going to be hard work to keep going but totally doable. I was not factoring in the possibility that my slow slide towards my energy turbines turning slower and slower and slower over time might just continue.  feeling-low-energy-vector-11662738

Since this energy slide over the last 17 days (since 12/11) has been progressive there is a possibility – probably a really good possibility – that it will continue. and that strategies that in this moment seem in reach may turn out to be out of reach. I’m going to try to realistically assign priorities to each of these items:

  •  A) crucial. Got a find a way to keep doing them. 
  • B) stretch objectives. I really really want to do them, but will go easy on myself if over time they become maybe untenable. 
  • C) nice ideas. In this moment I can picture myself doing them, but they may be pipe dreams even today.

It’s one in the morning. I went to bed at 7 PM and got five hours of pretty solid sleep. Then I lay in bed for maybe an hour thinking. Out of that experience I am producing my first two strategies.

  • Get up every day and stay up as much as possible A

  • If I lay in bed awake for a longish time, maybe an hour, push myself to get out of bed, go stumble into the living room and do something – even if it’s only to check my email A

  • Try to keep writing, most days anyway, even if that only means to try to capture in a voice to text file, like I’m doing now, something that looks like it might have potential to share with people, maybe on my blog. Hopefully after the fact I will find the energy to clean that file up and try to publish it on the blog A

  • Shower and shave every day A

  • Eat regularly, real food, try to get some greens, try to use my new-to-me juicer. A

  • Get Pancho out for play dates with Diana and Angie and Susie.  A

  • Get or hire someone to take her for longer walks if I can’t. Maybe Cynthia or Cindy. A

  • Get out of the house every day, preferably more than once, at least to walk the dog.  Pancho is now using pee pads and doesn’t have to hold it when I don’t get her out. A

  • Maintain some minimum social contact. A

    • I have been telling Diana for days that I want her to come over and watch a video with me and I’ll cook her a veggie burger. Push. Do it. (later – done, yay!) A

    • When people are pursuing me for social contact, respond back to them positively B

    • There are maybe four people on the screen right now that I feel motivated to violate my “do not pursue” policy and keep going after them. I want to do that. C.

    • Having, over the last three weeks, achieved some pretty great feng shui in my apartment, don’t let it go. Don’t let it slide. Don’t let clutter accumulate. Keep getting the dirty dishes out of the kitchen sink. Keep doing your laundry. A

      I definitely have no fucking idea what “feng shui” really means.  I use the term as a convenient shorthand for getting my apartment into a shape that makes it pleasant to spend time there – which I did, big-time, a couple of weeks ago.  Achieving that peace in my environment seemed to play a role in my “Second Initiation” experience on December 3.

    • If possible, even in very minimal ways, keep pushing the decluttering process. Take one little pile of clutter and see if you can reduce it even a tiny bit. B

    • Continue your decluttering process online – organizing your files and folders better, making them more satisfying and soothing and less stressful to deal with.
      B

  • Resist mightily the siren song of 30 years of psychiatry speak. This is not “depression“. It is a ferocious, hellacious, energy downturn. It is your karma – it was wired into your energy system from birth. stock-vector--businessman-with-low-battery-red-color-vector-illustration-isolated-on-white-background-793487515

    • Your high energy, which still at this point mostly looks like a gift from the divine, comes with this price tag. As much as possible keep embracing the whole package. A

    • Do not, I repeat do not use words like “bipolar disorder”, “mania” or “depression”. They are toxic words created by a misguided profession, a profession which has damaged your life in very significant ways. You have some wiggle room against all that nonsense right now. Don’t give it up. A
    • Stay in touch with your social mainstays, Tom Kilby and Diana Buchanan. Don’t let more than a day go by without touching base with your neighbor Diana and not more than two or three days without touching in with your really good buddy Tom. A

    • Find a new therapist psychotherapist. A

      • This last one was just right for that last period of 10 weeks, it really does make sense to let go of her at this point, but find another one.

    • Share this list, maybe in the form of a blog post, with key people. A

    • Keep getting to church  A

    • Keep responding to emails and voicemails. A

    • Try to respond positively to people who reach out to you, even when you may not be able to reach out yourself. B

    • Curl up on the love seat – maybe with a beer or glass of wine or some chocolate.  Watch videos with your doggie and maybe the right person. A

      • You may have renewed your Netflix membership at just the right time.

      • Didn’t you find at one point that when you couldn’t function in any other way, that it was soothing to sit on the sofa with your dog on your lap and watch a video?

      • Find videos that are especially encouraging or inspiring or energizing.

        • Ask your Facebook friends if they have ideas B
          • If they want to come watch a video B

        • Keep giving Netflix feedback about the videos you watch and see if that helps their recommendations to you

 

        • Fussing with your Netflix queue is obviously fun and satisfying to you. Two days after you re-upped your membership you had 230 movies in your queue.

    • Get an air freshener for your apartment

      • Maybe the Earth fare wellness department will have ideas
  • Don’t fall in the trap of pathologizing the genuine accomplishments of your last six months. Specifically

    • Don’t stop cherishing the deep spiritual value of what you have been calling your two initiations: Waking Up on June 26 and the Second Initiation on December 3. A

      • You may need to scale back greatly what you think those initiations mean. A

      •  Maybe no group leading, which you clearly do not have the positive vision or physical energy to do right now. Even to do the leading much less the promotion to get people out for it. A

      • Let’s go for now of whether you will ever do coaching or counseling. That’s something you clearly don’t have the energy for right now. Wait and see.A

      • Go back and re-read the posts on your blog. If there is some language or even a whole post which now seem overblown or unrealistic, edit them or make them private for the time being. You don’t need to delete them yet B

    • Don’t toxify some of the big gains you made during those six months

      • Coming out as bisexual was a really positive thing to do. Even if you don’t have the energy to allow that to turn into any new behaviors, just the increased integrity is crucial for you.

      • The several relationships that you let go of during that period each was genuinely lacking the level of integrity you need in your life right now. Don’t criticize that step or feel like you made any bad “manic” mistakes. New relationships are already starting to fill the gap

      • Setting a new boundary with your son was heartbreaking, but necessary. You are a healthier person and your life more sustainable because of it.

  • Continue your initiative to develop a more positive loving relationship with your body

    • Continue that journaling B

    • Discontinue your relationship with your two session physical therapist, who you are realizing has a lack of integrity. A
    • Find another one, preferably one who provides what the PT’s call manual therapy, which is kind of like massage apparently and which your body seems to be craving. A

    • Follow through on the process of finding a new chiropractor, which your insurance covers, maybe especially if you are going to be spending a lot of time in bed which seems to challenge your back. A

    • You got instructions at your second initiation to let go of colas and coffee. You were in your high energy state then – I wonder about experimenting with coffee now. Maybe try it. B

    • Try to keep dancing A

      • During the last six months, you were dancing several times a day – kind of all day. Three days ago you were still dancing pretty good. Yesterday it mostly seemed like dancing was out of reach, until you got a little high on wine in the afternoon.

      • Keep putting on danceable music, in the apartment or walking the dog, and see if your body will respond to it. B

      • Try going to Susan’s Tuesday morning ecstatic dance and see what happens there. B

      • It may be worth enhancing the moment with alcohol or marijuana, if it can give you a chance to touch the light again through dance.

      •  It did seem yesterday like your body may be getting to a place – at least some of the time – of finding any kind of a beat aversive.

    • Even if conventional psychiatric wisdom and maybe even your past experience says that in this down energy state you won’t have access to the energetic kundalini connection, a.k.a. life energy, a.k.a. sexual energy, do not assume that is true. Keep experimenting.

    • Right now your experience is that pleasuring yourself sexually is harder to achieve, but not impossible. It seems like you need the right fantasy of the right person to get there. A

    • To actually be physically doing the right thing sexually with the right person could still help you touch the divine, again maybe enhanced with alcohol or marijuana, which could be a pretty good trade off for having access to the divine.

  • Do not, I repeat urgently do not, surrender to any panicked desire to try more psych meds. They have only ever been toxic for you. Continue your two month plan to phase off of Lamictal, the last one. A

  • Post this on your blog, if that actually seems to be appropriate and desirable. C

  • Keep reviewing your relationships for ones that maybe now no longer pass your integrity test. It looks like life keeps floating one at a time up to the surface. You have one in mind right now.  Keep taking action to cut the lack of integrity out of your life. A

  • Start keeping an integrity journal! This is such an obvious that it’s the first sentence in this piece that has brought out an exclamation point in me!  A

    • Go back and retroactively celebrate all the positive steps you’ve taken towards more integrity. A

    • Give good focus to the one relationship you are aware of that is right now out of integrity. Get as clear as you can about it.  A

    • If possible take action to bring more integrity into that relationship. B

  • Mind your money better than you did this month A

    • Even though you have genuinely made progress towards really embracing poverty, it still has been very stressful to have no money

    • And when your energy is down it can be genuinely disheartening and discouraging

    • Not spending too much money will probably be easier when your energy is turned down rather than turned up

  • Edit this document and organize it better than it is now B

    • That will make it more satisfying for you to re-read it or use it as a roadmap

    • Will make it easier and more satisfying for anyone else to read.

  • Who to share this with
    • Any new psychotherapist
    • Your physician
    • Janet, your lovely building manager and Gayland the program coordinator
    • Tom
    • Diana
    • Amy, your minister
    • Kim Bella at the Center for Spiritual Emergence
    • Consider putting it on the blog
    • People who have been concerned about a possible crash
      • Erin at Mission Health Partners
      • Jenna, with whom you are ending psychotherapy
      • The psychiatrist you just ended with
      • The men’s group you left
      • A couple of other relationships you broke off

Thursday evening group temporarily discontinued

It seems totally realistic and maybe personally crucial for me to not think of my current energy downturn as “depression” – but to understand it purely on an energy level. I have always had strong energy swings and that will probably always be part of my package.

But this current energy downturn, which started about three weeks ago, is turning out to be rougher than I thought it would be. Right now it precludes my running or promoting groups.

I am hoping to still do some writing. With a little luck there will be some blog posts popping up here from time to time.

The Second Initiation

Just when I thought it was safe to go back into the water – when I thought that I would not in this lifetime have a devastating breakthrough in my spiritual life like the one I had on June 26, that I could just now methodically work my way through the tasks and challenges that Life so reliably sends me – there was this!

Tuesday night, December 3, around 10 p.m., I got up from a nap that was supposed to last two hours but actually went four (very unusual in itself). Quickly (1 minute) went through my new regular three steps for getting myself out of bed (truly always a real challenge).

Went into the living room and mentally confronted the two tasks I had been holding for the whole day, that I intended to get up at 8 p.m. in order to have four hours for accomplishing them before midnight – and which all day I knew were not realistic to accomplish today, and had built up tension in me all day (this phenomenon used to be common for me and never happens anymore).

Quickly realized that there was almost no way I was going to get these two tasks done by midnight (when the Vistaprint sale on business cards would end). Watched my push and hurry and tension and stress around these two tasks melt away – gradually slide into oblivion like they just absolutely were not there anymore.  

Went into a very beautiful state of just total beingness, nothing-to-focus-on, my mind suddenly not filled with tension and worries but instead a blank slate, and my attention more going into my body.

Saw the image of an old friend I had very briefly seen that day, who I have not seen or talked to for months, who I have missed a lot and who has very much been on my mind. 

  1. Thought how much I like her – what a great person she is, and what great connections we have had in the past, including ways she has been very helpful to me at some critical moments and I am very grateful to her.

  2. This thought of how much I liked her dropped into my body, and I experienced

    1.  a strong relationship charge: I really want more connection to her, am drawn to her, feel a magnetic pull to her.  In a period where I have been letting go of some relationships because they do not have this kind of energetic charge.cosmic lover

    2. a strong sexual/kundalini energetic charge – my life force is heightened by thinking of her, including sexual feelings and imagery.  It was a surprise to me a few months ago, when I discovered myself feeling not just the relationship charge with her, but also this more-specific sexual charge.  The relationship charge has remained definitely primary with her, very much to be appreciated and enjoyed and even heightened – with the sexual charge being very much secondary, mostly rhetorical (not anything I intend to act on or which I think will actually happen in this life).  It’s a sweet, hot, fun energy – nice to visit and juicy to know is actually in the mix with this woman, but not warranting a lot of focus.  

      The actual sexual turn-on lasted maybe 10-30 minutes, I actually have no idea how long – it felt so powerful and amazing and endless.  I had images of her and me that were amazingly sweet and hot.

    3. the sexual turn-on gradually slid away (my erection finally subsided.  30 minutes?  That might be a new record for just a fantasy, at least in my later years.)  What was left was an extraordinary overall body energetic charge – no longer specifically sexual (no fantasies or erection), but really just generally being hot for life, being turned-on to life.

It was about at this point in this amazing, truly mind-blowing experience that I realized consciously that I was in the middle of a very, very special experience – as important and shaping-of-my-future, I knew then, as my June 26 “Waking up”experience had been.  The words that popped into my head were:

The Second Initiation.  As in, “Wow – Life isn’t through with me yet.  This is like really fucking big.  I want to pay attention to every moment of it – to, as much as possible, remember every moment – but especially to totally surrender to it, to let it have my way and to change me as much as it wants to.  Oh, God, what makes me want shit like that?!”

initiation-2
The Second Initiation – by whom? What?  I haven’t been given an ID card, specifying the organization.  Life? Spirit? My own Energetic-Body?

As the power of this pure beingness somewhat subsided, it was followed by some very specific instructions for this chapter of my life.  They were quite a bit more detailed than the four simple instructions I got on June 26 (two of them that night were very specific, and two were more qualities to aim for).  This time again, I never knew quite where the instructions were coming from, but they were very clear and convincing  They covered exercise, diet, faithfulness to my body, sexuality, relationships, and work.  I will detail them in other posts.