Life is asking everything of me at this moment.
I feel the gift of the moment is to not leave myself behind in my quest to open to life in its fullest. There is so much intensity, ramping up in each moment, equally balanced between ecstasy and suffering and progress and regression, as all the aspects of myself grow and transform while working to stay in balance with themselves in the cosmic dance of Life.
The intensity of it all throws me off center quite often, whether in regards to my motivation, vitality, relationships, career, and spiritual path. Tests arise each day that taunt the traumatized, egoic versions of my younger selves to bare their teeth and jump to the defense of my predetermined sense of what’s best for the situation – and yet Life continues to teach me that She operates from an eternal wisdom that is always holding at heart, the holistic wellness of all beings, and is committed to my journey of self love, awakening, deep practice, and Love.
In other words, life is kicking my ass, asking everything of me, forcing me beyond all conceivable limits of whom I am and what I am capable of doing, and revealing each moment that the challenge and suffering bring invaluable lessons even with immeasurable pain, and also revealing that what seems good and easy is often an oasis of illusion in a desert of uncertainty.
When we find ourselves chasing a situation which reveals itself to be empty, it can feel as if everything we are seeking for is actually worth nothing, and while we felt that we were on a path of some sort, we may have actually been slow motion epic failing.
And the moments when we surrender, and choose to humbly endure life’s inherent suffering, are often the times when everything begins to change, new outlooks emerge and the edges of the embers of the fire of this life suddenly suddenly roar to life and begin burning.
What is life, but tending this fire?
Just two days ago I was on the verge of losing it, nearly shedding inexplicable emotional tears on the highway, confused about what was beneath the sudden feelings. The juxtaposition of my internal emotional experience at that moment and the external abundance and ease of my “successful” professional life are striking, and at times makes it challenging to express emotional experiences authentically.
There’s a big voice that comes forth with countless excuses of why I should be grateful for what I have, and snap out of whatever insignificant concern has rattled my heart. And it’s an interesting thing to ponder what is worth crying about in a life that is generally good, abundant, and nourishing, if perhaps a bit lonely and workaholic-y.
Meanwhile, so many that I love and cherish are suffering in the path of scarcity and poverty due to myriad causes and conditions, and Life does not offer instructions for how to parse one’s own earnings among those needing help all around us, in balance for our own sustenance, comfort, and luxury.
Not to mention the collective karmic situation and the chaotic node that humanity as a species, and Earth as a living organism is enduring at this time of many crises.
So I had a thought, due to the overwhelming workload and unceasing demands of my job right now, that I would just pull an all nighter, burn both ends for the rest of the week and create the conditions for my future success at work and in my career, by building the shit out of this $180M casino and hotel, and getting caught up to where I can reclaim a part of non-sleeping discretionary hours, for non-work related things I like to do.
And I thought to myself, “what the hell am I doing this for?” Not in a, I need to quit my job, grow my hair out, go to Tibet, and live at music festivals for the foreseeable future, kind of way (although, that sometimes sounds appealing).
But more in a, what truly is it that drives me at the core of my being to invest so intensely nearly all of my vital life-giving energy into this career, this job, that is using all of my creative energy to build wealth for powerful corporations and destroying unimaginable quantities of virgin Earth resources in the process.
And trust me. This is a painful question to truly ask myself given the decades of effort I have directed towards creating a successful life that is strikingly similar as I dreamed it to be as a teen and young man, hoping to see myself in the future standing exactly where I am right now.
And at this moment, I continue to choose this path. Knowing full well the nuanced hypocrisy of the choices I make, in regards to my ecological values of peace and sustainability contrasting with the inevitable daily ecological destruction due to the construction of multi-million dollar buildings and infrastructure. The resources that go into building simultaneously move the economy positively, while drastically impacting the Earth’s natural capital and the ecological habitat within with all humans will always be living.
I’m learning how to navigate the talk and the walk, to get them closer with more regularity, while both intentionally moving forward in life and choosing to always live freely. I live a life of paradox, purposefully, and I have no qualms about not fitting neatly into any categories of identity, intellect, spirit, or interests.
I am here to discover the edges of being alive, through my own personal journey of living nakedly honest to myself, striving to create the highest integrity for myself in every moment, and not hiding from the countless ways I engage in self-deception, sabotage, and hypocrisy along the journey.
The rest of this post is actually the start of it all, 17 days ago. The prologue up to this point has been an inspired introduction to a stream of consciousness experience, that at this moment I cannot even remember how the next section ends. When I’m writing, sometimes an exponential explosion of conceptual alchemy far surpassing my own conscious thought patterns, burst forth onto the page and feels like a clear indicator of some higher inspiration working through me on this very cosmic journey.
It all started in listing the contrasting experiences presenting themselves in my life…
This is an inspirational evolution of a stream of consciousness that began as a social media post, and quickly outgrew its initial intent.
The Fullness of Loving Life
(draft 5/11/17, with minor edits prior to posting)
The challenges I’m facing, the stress I’m under, the excitement and pleasure that I experience, the suffering in my life and those I care deeply about and love unconditionally, the immense collective trauma we are experiencing on a global scale from corrupt political leadership, insidious human trafficking, violent conflicts, dirty wars, drone assassinations, violence against women, extremism in all its forms, the ecocide of carelessness of our collective mass mind, and the misappropriation of the abundance of the world, away from regenerative live giving systems and towards destructive, exclusive, and ecologically negligent systems of infrastructure and commerce… We are truly living in an overblown fuse box, all breakers tripped, sparking, smoke rising, moments away from being engulfed in flames, and yet we still wake up again tomorrow. Life asks us for just one more day. One more moment.
All life asks for is our conscious awareness of what is happening, how it is affecting our body/mind/soul/habitat, and attuning to the synchronicity of collectively thriving as an ecosystem of resource generating systems, living and loving for the common benefit of our self and the other, and forging a gracious and gratuitous deal with Life.
Give Life all you can bear of your consciousness and awareness, don’t miss a thing, and Life goes on creating one more day, one more moment, one more flash of awareness, and in returning, gifting you the same.
It’s a deal with Life worth Loving. And this Love of Life, extends to the farthest reaches of the cosmos. This Love of Life, of wanting to witness in some fashion just one more day, nourishes the root of all Life in the center of all hearts. This Love of Life exists solely for everything other than its own self-preservation, knowing that Life itself sustains this Love, and this Love needs no self-sustaining protection habits to keep itself safe.
This Love of Life transcends the human experience that our souls are experiencing at this moment in time. This Love of Life is my fountain of youth, as it disintegrates the entire notion of separation that could ever lead me to believe that I was ever not existing before I came into this body, and diminishes the self-oriented fear that some day death may come in such a way that may be different than this Life.
Because this Love of Life is where we all came from in the beginning. It’s where we pray to. It’s where our loved ones, past/present/future, stay in contact with our hearts. It is the nature of us that is beyond our capacity to exist in the physical plane.
This Love of Life is why I work my ass off so hard in life to do my very best and help all those I cross paths with along the way to love their lives, and Life itself – so that their dance deepens with the intensity of becoming attuned with the true nature of this moment we are existing within right Now.
We live in precarious times, facing potential species-level extinction ecosystems collapse, the prospect of sea levels rising 20 or more feet in our lifetimes, there are so many challenges we face as a result of the human imbalance with the environment that has evolved over the past few thousand years.
Whether you want to believe that we came out of Africa, out of a star ship, or out of the Garden of Eden, in any case, we emerged from – or ventured into – the forests of Earth, and survived from the plentiful resources available and have now built the global interconnected community of humans that have completely dominated nearly every square mile of the Earth with its infrastructure, waste, pollution, recreation, resource extraction, and agriculture.
We are in a pandemic of humanity’s impact on our global ecosystem, but we as a global people are too self-centered in our mass mind, to face the reality that we are in an extinction level event right now, and our time to course correct is quickly eroding into a story that future humans will wonder about, when speaking of the lost civilization of global humans, eradicated within a 100-year period from drought, famine, warfare, and ecological collapse.
Pray with me, to this Love of Life, that we – collectively – awaken to a greater common purpose of nurturing the flame of life, and living forward every day into the next moment that is arising with fullness in our hearts, and Love in our Life.