It's easy to forget that we are all perfect in our own design. Sometimes we muck it up with habits and choices that do not serve us. 

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Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: In Those Moments

photo_by_donald-gianiatti
Sometimes, after she falls and before

she gets up, she takes a deep breath.

And in those moments, she stares

briefly into the Center of Things.

It calms her. For in those moments,

she drinks from something older than

her life. Other times, the same thing

happens when reading a passage from

a book that opens her heart. Or when

hearing that lift in a song that makes

her think of looking at the stars as

a little girl. She never knows how to

speak of these openings. It’s as if

the still point of her life rests on

the bottom of all trouble like a

weighted pearl. And an invisible

string ties it to her heart. And

every once in a while, the pearl

of life tugs at her heart, forcing

her to fall and remember that

there is nowhere to go.



A Question to Walk With: In conversation with a friend or loved one, describe your own firsthand experience of how being stopped opened you to more than just your life.

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Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: Thinking She was Lost

meiying-ng-Mark-Nepo---March-8

She was standing in the aisle as the train bumped along the Hudson. She was looking in her bag, as if she’d lost something important. She just meant to check that it was still there, like when she reached for her wallet the other day, just to make sure she didn’t leave it on the counter in the drugstore. Or like reaching for that small photo of her son who was now gone. Is it there? How could she go on without it? The more she looked, the more desperate she became, as if she couldn’t find her heart. Where did she leave it? She began to search her mind for when she last took her heart out. Did she leave it on the table at the restaurant when the young couple reminded her of her first love? Or did she leave it at her son’s funereal? Did it fall into his grave at the cemetery? She had to find it or she couldn’t go on. I began to ache for her, saying to myself, “Keep looking. It has to be there. You can’t lose something like that.” But then, I slouched, remembering the times I’d lost my heart and how awful the weeks before I found it. She began to cry and pull at her bag, as if it had betrayed her. My heart began to pound. Things started to spill from her bag onto the floor. I moved closer, thinking, Now that I’m in this, I have enough heart for two. I touched her arm. And the extra heart she’d given me by being so real in her fear of loss in the middle of a train—I gave it back by holding up her bag which was falling. She gasped for air, as if waking from a dream of drowning, and put her hand to her chest. It had been there all along.

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Electricity of Touch

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Kennedy shares with us the electricity of touch, that which we knew even before the heart begins to beat. We came from the heart - our energetic heart. Listen as she tells the story of two twin baby girls and the electricity of touch.  
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You are Totally Loveable (Just the way you are)

Totally Lovable

The 8th anniversary of my sister Debbie’s passing was a few days ago.

I was going through some recordings we did together and found a “feelingization” on falling in love with yourself that is just gorgeous.

Below is the essence of the process and you can also access the audio here.

Place your attention on the area around your heart, and take a deep breath into the deepest part of yourself, as you hold the intention of falling in love with yourself: knowing that you are worthy, loving, and wholly unique.

See yourself seated on a beautiful velvet loveseat in the center of your own heart…. a cozy and comfortable love seat…. now look off to your left and you are going to see an image of you…. it’s an image of your most loveable self: the part of you that radiates joy and hope: the part of you that knows you are special and unique and that there is nobody like you in the world.

What does that aspect of you look like? Maybe you’ll see an image of yourself at age 2, or 3, or 15 or 22. It’s you radiating love. Your eyes are lit up, you are irresistible. Now just invite that aspect of yourself to come and sit beside you on the loveseat as you continue to breathe deeply.

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156 Hits

Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: Two Forms of Compassion

ocean

What is compassion but drifting in the immensity of life with an open heart? We bump into and pass by so many torn and budding lives along the way. Some are like us, many are not—on the surface, but under it all, we remain the same ounce of spirit carried in skin and bone. One of our jobs, then, is to learn how to relate to the cascade of others that rise and fall around us. The practice of compassion is how we learn that we are each other. And the practice of expression is how the heart knows itself.

Early on in life, there is an initiation into the practice of compassion through the commonality of our experience with others. If I have suffered and healed from a broken heart, then when I witness your heart breaking, I can easily identify with what you’re going through. If you’ve lost your job and come into my life when I’m laid off, we can easily meet in our common struggle through adversity. If I’ve felt betrayed by a friend or loved one and I’m with you when you are betrayed, we can quickly form a bond that will help each other through. This sort of compassion, based on our common experience, is an ongoing apprenticeship that never ends.

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142 Hits

Heart Memory

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I once read about an injured hawk that was rescued and taken to a raptor rehabilitation center. The hawk, after recovering from its injuries, was driven back to the location where it had been found, many miles away. At a certain point in the trip, the hawk suddenly became more alert. It lifted its head and looked around sharply; it moved its wings with anticipation. It sensed in the deepest part of its being that its home was near. Such behavior can’t be logically explained by science because it has to do with the things we know without physical evidence to prove it. Awareness beyond the five senses. Author Rupert Sheldrake called it “morphic resonance” in explaining how a dog would know its human companion, a hundred miles away, had started to return home. We living beings, animal or human, feel presence and remember home from great distances. Our heart has an intelligence even deeper and wider than the brain’s.

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192 Hits

Why You Should Follow Your Heart

follow-heart

You’ve read the books, done the seminars, completed the workshops, and have had experiences, even if they were momentary. But, at some point, you have to fully go all in on what you believe and what you know. You are an independent unit of divine expression in this world and it’s all about you complying with the wisdom and knowledge that resides at the level of your own heart. 

The more that people demonstrate the courage to follow their hearts, the more the end result is happiness! It’s amazing how there’s that correlation between following your heart and being happy – doing what you love doing, and being happy, having the courage to pursue your passion, and being happy. It is incredible how over and over and over again, I am hearing, witnessing, and experiencing people who have the courage to break free of the norm and live fully from their hearts. 

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890 Hits

Take Heart

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What do you do when the bottom falls out?

The Practice:
Take heart.

Why?

It takes heart to live in even ordinary times.

By “taking heart,” I mean several related things:

  • Sensing your heart and chest
  • Finding encouragement in what is good both around you and inside you
  • Resting in your own warmth, compassion, and kindness; resting in the caring for you from others; love flowing in and love flowing out
  • Being courageous, whole-hearted and strong-hearted – going forward wisely, even when anxious, knowing your own truth and, as you can, speaking it

When you take heart, you’re more able to deal with challenges like aging, illness, trauma, or conflicts with others. You’re also more able to take advantage of opportunities with confidence and grit.

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Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: One More Time

Wilfried-Santer Fragrance of peace

Every day, we are challenged to love what we’re given as much as what we want. We don’t have to like the things we’re given, but we need to find a way to accept them. And love is the surest way to deepen our acceptance. And so, we must stay devoted to getting up one more time than we fall down. To waking up one more time than we fall asleep. To being sensitive one more time than we are blunt and cumbersome. To listen one more time than we speak. To hold one more time than we drop what we’re holding. To aspire to be clear one more time than we are confused. To open one more than we close. And to lean into life one more time than we are pushed away. We may not always land in the open, but when we do, the tenderness we find is the earned fragrance of peace.

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Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: Living a Making

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When finding my way as a young man, I came home from college to have a classic argument with my father. Over dinner the first night, I declared to him with excitement that I was a poet. I hadn’t yet written anything but knew it was true. He was incredulous and frustrated and loudly asked, “How are you going to make a living?” I’m not sure where it came from in me, but I looked at him and said, “I’m going to live a making.” I confess that I’ve spent much of my life learning what that means. And it is living a making for so many years that has led me to the place of true meeting that waits under all our struggles.

I have learned that making a living is how we survive, but living a making is how we thrive. We need the strength and resilience to do both.

There is always a tension between surviving and thriving, and between making a living and living a making. Part of the journey of individuation is withstanding the tension of both until they work hand in hand.

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You And Your Brain: Upgrading The Relationship

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" When your mind and heart are truly open abundance will flow to you effortlessly and easily.

Although the marvels of the brain as an organ have been wondered at for decades, there’s a risk that science will make us feel like brain puppets. Neuroscience runs this risk by assuming, without any proof, that our brains think, feel, perceive the world, and make choices. In reality the brain is an instrument at the service of the mind. We cannot live without it, just as we cannot live without a heart, but by promoting the brain into a thinking machine (an M.I.T. professor who championed Artificial Intelligence dubbed the brain “a computer made of meat”), we demote ourselves.

You are much more in charge of your biology than you think. Your experiences constantly change your brain. Much of the time we fail to pay attention to how we relate to the brain, but no relationship is more important. One thing the human brain does, in fact, share with computers: It is programmable. We primarily use this fact the wrong way around. Instead of programming our brains to be open, creative, alert, and quiet, we program it to carry out a hundred short cuts.

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Your Are Enough – Enter The Heart

iStock-1198297154 Your Are Enough – Enter The Heart

“Your heart is also what allows you to embrace the deepest, darkest parts of your created self and bring them into resolution.”

The result of acceptance and vibrational transformation is not that you become a doormat. It is not an excuse to do nothing about your situation, whether it is an abusive relationship, a job that is unsupportive, or a dear family member who is taking advantage of your good heart and pocket book. Quite the opposite, vibrational transformation sets the stage for empowered, inspired, dynamic action.

These deepest, darkest parts of yourself are usually found cloaked in the guises of your sub-personalities. Sub-personalities are egoic adaptations that help you navigate the world—­coping mechanisms that protect you from feeling your perceived lack of worth and lovability.

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End the Pain of Getting in Your Own Way

perfect-paintbrush-with-pink-heart-on-white-picture-id1156702512 End the Pain of Getting in Your Own Way

You know what it means to get in your own way, don't you? It is a true phenomenon.

Try to picture this: I'm walking down the street and then I run into myself… how can I run into myself unless I'm divided in such a way that in any given moment I’m on my way to do what something in me says is going to make the moment right, then I run into what the moment says will make it right… and I have a crash?


Here’s a little story to illustrate this idea of getting in our own way:

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Coronavirus – The Heart of the Matter

heart-shape-on-the-beach-picture-id1161657351 Coronavirus – The Heart of the Matter

All my life I have gone to the heart of the matter. When I graduated from college, I volunteered to fly fighters because I felt that was the heart of the Air Force. My eye sight prevented me, so I joined the Infantry because I felt that was the heart of the Army. Then I became a Green Beret officer because I felt that was the heart of the heart of the Army. When I wrote about quantum physics, I reached for the heart of this new discipline so I could write a book about it without scientific jargon and give non-scientists like me a clear and understandable explanation of it. That book won The American Book Award for Science, I believe, because it did exactly that.

I have come to see the heart of everything that we do and experience, individually and as a species, as consciousness. Our consciousness. My consciousness. Changing anything in the world, including myself, requires changing consciousness. The only place I can change consciousness is in myself.

Now I come to the coronavirus. Like everything I see around me, I see the coronavirus as symbolic. It has a lesson to teach me, and in my opinion, it has a lesson to teach us. The coronavirus is real in that it kills, the world economy is crippled, hundreds of millions have no work or shelter or comforting hand to hold theirs when they are ill. The most difficult is yet to come in economically undeveloped countries and collectives.

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650 Hits

Peace from Gratitude

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Charles Dickens described the French Revolution as “the best of times” and the “worst of times.” We could use similar words to describe our world now. There is chaos, conflict, death, and destruction on the one hand, and love, compassion, and the birth of a new more aware consciousness on the other. We who are alive at this time are bridges between the old and the new, Heaven and Earth, humanity and divinity. To hold all that within us requires great courage as well as deep inner peace. How do we achieve that?

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From an adrenaline-based system to a heart-based system: Anchoring the Deep Heart

meditating-guru-boy-picture-id1015300864 From an adrenaline-based system to a heart-based system: Anchoring the Deep Heart

As I now awake to the melodious sound of happy birds instead of rushing people, to the Earth taking a deep breath, the Sun rising up on a new changing planet, I am in gratitude. We have all known that the pace and the impact of humanity without connection consciousness, without care to all beings or one another had to cease somehow. Little did we envision it would come in the form of a tiny particle. Yes there is tremendous hardship and for that my heart goes out. As we deepen together and awaken to the always connected universe, we are transitioning in force and unprecedented collective from normal to natural, from adrenaline-based stress-based living to a true sense of the underlying connection, love and universality based in the heart, our portal of oneness, of love at its highest singularity. We have the opportunity now more than ever to step out of normal which was devastating the planet into a more natural connected, radically inclusive, resonant relationship with our world, all of Creation and the Cosmos.

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The Heart of Peace

IMG_1973-1200x900 The Heart of Peace

During challenging times, such as the one we are currently experiencing, it is often quite difficult to remain calm and centered. Fear and anxiety dominate the collective consciousness, and we start to slide into negative thinking and feelings of overwhelm. We forget that at our core is unshakable calm and peace.

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How To Deal With A Breakup and Heal Your Heart

breakingup How To Deal With A Breakup and Heal Your Heart

Breakups are never easy.

Often difficult, painful, and sometimes messy.

Know this: Your heart can never be truly broken, even though it might seem that way in the moment. Your heart is beyond physical, it’s capacity to love is infinite.

In any breakup your heart gets broken open beyond its current capacity to love. Prior to the breakup you were able to love to a certain degree. The breakup shatters the edges of your heart’s limits. Yes, it can be painful in the moment, but like a deep yoga pose it stretches you beyond who and what you were. Breathe into it, and allow your heart to open wider.

Every breakup is a potential breakthrough. Every breakup is a graduation to your next level, so long as you learn the lessons of the relationship.

The end of a relationship with someone you love can be extremely painful, but it is not a failure. The real success of a relationship is not in how long you stay together, but in how much you became the most authentic version of yourself and how much you loved.

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Limitless Love on an Evolving Planet

IMG_0567-1200x900 Limitless Love on an Evolving Planet

Is love on a global scale, for oneself and others, possible? I believe it is, despite evidence to the contrary. Let’s face it. The current planetary paradigm that we inhabit is based in limitation. From a very early age, we are taught to curtail our heart’s desires for fear they will be crushed within a skewed social matrix that does not allow universal self-fulfillment and growth. Most social constructs in our world are organized on a top/bottom basis. Whether you are at the bottom or top, your life is limited by the very fact of inhabiting a limited paradigm. What would it take to shift that paradigm, to make it inclusive instead of exclusive? How about a complete transformation in global consciousness? Because until the collective consciousness changes, we are all caught in a web of limitation.

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Spiritual Liberation

spiritual_liberation Spiritual Liberation

Social activism and making a constructive difference in the world were focal points in the Los Angeles household of my childhood. My parents’ generosity of heart and community values were strong influences on me and my two brothers. Their example contributed to my involvement in anti-Vietnam protests during high school, boycotting businesses that paid unfair wages to people of color, and my membership in the Black Worker’s Congress and the establishment of the Harriet Tubman Prison Committee in college. I enthusiastically participated in these and other socially acceptable activities of the ’60s and ’70s. I was known to be an agnostic, so my unorthodox spiritual opening came as much of a surprise to my family and friends as it did to me.

In the early 1970s I was a student at the University of Southern California, majoring in psychobiology, a time when smoking marijuana was, well, the norm. What I was learning in classes about mental illness caused me to wonder if echoes of some childhood experiences wherein I experienced visions were pathological. I cut back on the marijuana, hoping the visions and voices would stop. Instead, they only intensified.

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1035 Hits