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“ITS ALL YOUR PROJECTION!” Erm.
No. It’s not always your projection.

Sometimes the other person
really IS angry, or sad, or scared,
or judging you.
Or lying.

Or fleeing themselves
by shaming you.

Sometimes you really CAN trust
your feeling, your gut intuition,
your instinct.

Sometimes it’s not a question of working on yourself more, clearing up your projections, but of simply standing in your truth, knowing yourself more deeply, validating your own vulnerable human experience.

And yes.
Sometimes you’re totally projecting.
Sometimes you aren’t seeing clearly at all.

Sometimes it really is YOUR anger,
sadness, fear.
It’s your own incorrect thinking.
It’s your own unmet material
thrown onto the ‘other’
(really yourself). You must look for the truth
in each and every moment.
There’s no formula. No map.

Truth is alive!

So stay mindful, present, aware.
Don’t settle for easy answers.
Be willing to LOOK.
With humble, open eyes.

– Jeff Foster

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Digital Art by Tony Ariawan

“The hard things break. The soft things bend. The stubborn ones batter themselves against all that is immovable. The flexible adapt to what is before them. Of course, we are all hard and soft, stubborn and flexible, and so we all break until we learn to bend and are battered until we accept what is before us. This brings to mind the Sumerian tale of Gilgamesh, the stubborn, hard king who sought to ask the Immortal One the secret of life. He was told that there would be stones on his path to guide him. But in his urgency and pride, Gilgamesh was annoyed to find his path blocked, and so smashed the very stones that would help him. In his blindness of heart, he broke everything he needed to discover his way. With the same confusion, we too break what we need, push away those we love, and isolate ourselves when we need to be held most. There have been many times in my life when I have been too proud to ask for help or too afraid to ask to be held, and in the frenzy of my own isolation, like Gilgamesh, I have smashed the window I was trying to open, have split the bench I was trying to hammer, and have made matters worse by bruising the one I meant to be tender with. The live bough bends. The dead twig snaps. We are humbled to soften from our griefs, or else, in brittle time, become the next thing grieved.”

Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have

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‘Have you ever thought to yourself, “I think I might be going a little crazy,” but then you remember that you’re really just an awakened, loving, kickass warrior, hell bent on changing the world, and you refuse to accept the negative vibrations and the fear and the hate and the illusion of separation, and you remember that there are many others just like you, that stand with you, the alchemists, the conscious warriors, the rule breakers, the lovers of life, the ones that are determined to lift each other up and to ensure that love wins, the ones that are just crazy enough to get the job done, and then you remember that you’re not crazy at all and you’re not alone, you’re just awake? Yup, me too. You’re good. Keep going.’

-Creig Crippen

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BE FULLY ALIVE

Today.

There is no love without loss.
No heart without heart break.
No joy without tears.

The trick is
not to annihilate
the ‘negative’
from your life.

But to hold it ALL
in your vast and ancient heart.

Be the sky!
Hold the thunder, the snow,
the sad moon,
the glorious Sun.
Hold it all.

And you are free!
To love.
To risk.
To fail.
To be fully alive.

Today.

– Jeff Foster

Shine On

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“Laugh, even when you feel too sick or too worn out or tired.
Smile, even when you’re trying not to cry and the tears are blurring your vision.
Sing, even when people stare at you and tell you your voice is crappy.
Trust, even when your heart begs you not to.
Twirl, even when your mind makes no sense of what you see.
Frolick, even when you are made fun of. Kiss, even when others are watching. Sleep, even when you’re afraid of what the dreams might bring.
Run, even when it feels like you can’t run any more.

And, always, remember, even when the memories pinch your heart. Because the pain of all your experience is what makes you the person you are now. And without your experience—you are an empty page, a blank notebook, a missing lyric. What makes you brave is your willingness to live through your terrible life and hold your head up high the next day. So don’t live life in fear. Because you are stronger now, after all the crap has happened, than you ever were back before it started.”

Alysha Speer

The Light of Awareness

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‘There is no freedom without honest observation. If love is the
greatest healer we have ever met, then the greatest tool of love is
the light of awareness. It is through our awareness that we can learn
to let go, create new solutions, and go beyond old patterns and habits
to create new ways of being that will serve our greatest good. It is
when we completely observe and understand our own being that the
highest liberation becomes a reality.

What we seek is a middle path, one where we do not ignore our
problems, but also where we do not become dominated by them and make
them worse, a path where we can observe what is happening with
courage, calmness, and clarity so that we can address the situation
with actions that are the opposite of the problem.

Just as true as this is for the individual, so is it true for the
world. We cannot heal what we run away from, if we attempt to build
without understanding the problem, our chances of reproducing the
problem become quite great. It is when we thoroughly understand the
mechanics of what is truly happening that the answers to freedom and
empowerment for all become astonishingly clear.

Sending love to all beings! May we all come to know and understand
ourselves so that we may know and understand the world. May we all
understand the oneness of our inner worlds’ and the outer world we all
share. May we all heal ourselves and develop a new respect for our
earthly mother.’

 -Yung Pueblo

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“Make a commitment to love and trust yourself above all others. You will never be sorry for this, ever. Even when it seems like your choice might hurt another. Every one of the choices I made in my life in order to avoid hurting someone has ended up hurting them (and me) more in the long run. You can’t know what is best for someone else, only for you. Choose you.” ~Amaya Pryce 

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“You can’t solve the pain of your heartbreak with your mind. The mind wants everything to feel better, and it will do everything it can to figure out a solution that makes the pain end fast. That’s its job. Unfortunately for us, it will do so at the expense of what’s best for us. You’re going through pain for a reason. We learn our greatest lessons through pain. Do yourself a favor and feel it and be with it, and give yourself compassion to help ease it up until you get through. Because if you don’t, you’re going to run from it. You’re going to make some decisions that aren’t in alignment with who you are really here to be. You might avoid the pain by jumping back into a relationship, or with food, alcohol, or drugs. And then at some point in the future, this will happen all over again. Because you haven’t learned your lesson. You haven’t truly healed.” ~Michelle D’Avella

Fear

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“You consistently hear messages about putting fear aside and being fearless. To keep yourself in a place where you avoid feeling fear is to resist the very nature of being human – growing, learning, feeling and ultimately creating.

To be human requires you to feel fear. When you keep trying to make it go away and you are still alive, you can experience tension.

The goal is to be in a long term, committed relationship with fear. Only by accepting that fear will always be there for you can you become curious about what it has to teach you. When you get to know fear from curiosity, you can transform the angst and tension into patience. This relationship can be one of the most fruitful ones you have.” -Samira Far

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Image  from n9nlinear.tumblr.com

‘When a feeling of sadness, despair, or anger arises, we should stop what we are doing in order to go home to ourselves and take care. We can sit or lie down and begin to practice mindful breathing. The daily practice of breathing can be very helpful. A strong emotion is like a storm, and when a storm is about to arrive, we should prepare so we can cope with it. We should not dwell on the level of our head and our thinking but bring all our attention down to the level of our abdomen. We may practice mindful breathing and become aware of the rise and fall of our abdomen. Breathing in, rising; breathing out, falling. Rising, falling. We stop all the thinking because thinking can make the emotion stronger.

We should be aware that an emotion is only an emotion; it arrives, stays for some time, and then passes, just like a storm. We should not die just because of one emotion. We should remind young people about this. We are much more than our emotions, and we can take care of them whether we are feeling anger or despair. We don’t think anymore, we just focus 100 percent of our attention on the rise and fall of the abdomen and in that moment we are safe. Our emotion may last five or ten minutes but if we continue to breathe in and out, we will be safe, because mindfulness is protecting us. Mindfulness is the Buddha in us, helping us practice belly breathing…

We are like a tree during a storm. If you look at the top of a tree, you may have the impression that the tree can be blown away or that the branches can be broken anytime, but if you direct your attention to the trunk of the tree and become aware that the tree is deeply rooted in the soil, then you see the solidity of the tree. The mind is the top of the tree, so don’t dwell there; bring your mind down to the trunk. The abdomen is the trunk, so stick to it, practice mindful, deep breathing, and after that the emotion will pass. When you have survived one emotion, you know that next time a strong emotion arises, you will survive again. But don’t wait for the next strong emotion to practice. It is important that you practice deep, mindful breathing every day.’

– Thich Nhat Hanh