Wednesday, September 15, 2010


In my mornings, there is always an interior fire, somewhere, as if prehistoric DNA must make its rough voice heard. So even in the middle of summer, living in a house with electric heat, I carry a potential blaze around in my head and heart, as if the coals were right there. I'll just stir it up, add a few pieces of wood, grab my coffee and shuffle around it. Eventually, I'll warm up enough to dance. Maybe even sing...look out! Desi-i-i-i-i-i-re!

We all have it, and some people think it is the root of all evil. Learn to want what you have, they say. Accept what is, and stop chasing phantoms. Yes, yes. No, no. (Hey, that's a nice rhythm...a tiny double-hop on one foot, a tiny double-hop on the with me!)

When the world is a story we tell ourselves, there are many levels and types of desire, all connected to people, places and things that we don't seem to have. There are biological desires for food, warmth, shelter and companionship, and beyond that, the desire for more and better. Some say that "drive" makes the world go round. I say the world goes round by itself, drive or no drive. But I can't argue the fact that desire is a creative urge, one which can be either liberating or enslaving.

Desire is sticky, and often seems like a problem that somehow must be solved. Desire can be torturous when we think that it all boils down to wanting the right things, versus the wrong ones. We want to be good and not bad, safe, not sorry, admired, not avoided. Perversely, we sometimes seem to want stuff that is not necessarily good for us, socially acceptable, or attainable. In fact, we often seem to want things that put us in direct conflict with "reality", whatever that is.

On the psychological surface, every desire is tangled up with our ideas of personal security (safety), sensation (an imaginary place where world meets senses) and power (freedom). We want out of any kind of pain...and not just into neutrality, either--that gets boring, after a while.

Pretending we are a victim of some desirous force, we see ourselves as Point A trying to reach Point B, whereupon we will somehow become C (complete), happy and satisfied. In other words, we will be in some state of personal perfection--loved and loving, grounded and grounding, balanced and balancing...or simply high and free and unfettered. Preferably both. We shine the intense light of desire outward, across the landscape we believe is apart from us, and see the terrain we must negotiate in order to get to our personal Holy Grail.

In light of this common situation, how can desire be liberating? Why is that longing, that hunger, never completely satisfied? We feed it again and again, and it remains restless--in some cases, crossing a line into addiction, where we feel as though we are a helpless slave to a ravenous demon. At this point, no amount of pacifying or rationalizing seems to matter. We are emotionally, chemically and intellectually dependent. Some kind of intervention seems necessary, and may or may not be helpful.

Sitting down with the fire and turning the light of desire upon itself, rather than focusing upon the shadows "out there", I find the source of heat and light right here--not as a conclusion to a story that could be, or the end result of some action, but in the simple, visceral sensation of being. Not being alive, or dead--just Being. There is no real name for this all-inclusive fact, and nothing to be done about it.

I don't have to fuel this fire with anything special. I see that it continues, that it is, without adding or subtracting. There is a leap and stretch that I've been told is always toward or away from "something else"--as if such a motion had to have at its source a starvation, a lust for power, or a fear of what comes behind or if dancing is always for mating or establishing territory.

I notice that the reaching outward, the seeming hunger and thirst for those things that are rare or habitual, novel or comforting, can be an attempt to find and fix some kind of permanent identity, a self-situation that will not change, that will not be eaten up like dry tinder on an endless mission to keep things aflame. But the Love, here, is not something that needs to be fed. Hey! Love is not something that needs to be fed!

Love, by its very nature, is a self-replicating situation, throwing out endless, delightful sparks that can be followed, in a circular fashion, back to their Origin. Mistaking an ember of myself as something I need in order to be complete, I dance away from that circle of light, reveling in the fact that I am free to do just that, that I can dream of music and colors and tastes that I know exist in the kaleidoscope of reality, just beyond my reach, forgetting that it is the reaching that builds my own terrain...and that spark takes on a life of its own in the growing darkness.

It seems to beckon with promised warmth as the chill descends. I begin to believe that it is apart from me, really apart, lodged in a person, place or thing, waiting for me to capture it, consume it and make it part of me, so that I may find myself in it! In that little light, I feel my journey's looks, smells, and feels like home.

After a while, I don't remember where I began or why; the journey is long, indeed, and I am a wounded character in a history of my own making, on an epic quest to catch that falling star. I have hands that are scarred, a heart that is broken and guts that are far too sensitive. I am terribly attracted to shiny things, and when I see a reflection in a piece of shattered glass, I believe that I am looking at a real representation of Who I Am. Oh, the longing, the bargaining that I do, the sacrificing, the running! I give up, something breaks, I run out of resources...and then there is a scent on the breeze, a glimmer in the distance, a phantom bell...and I must go. Perhaps with a new name, a different companion, a better reason...

When the ember I grasp dies in my closed fist, or falls to the ground as a wasted piece of ash before I can even touch it, I stand there in disappointment and consternation. Within that grief is a stirring, a tugging at the woolly world I've buried myself in, if only I would stop long enough to heed it! The pull is always there, just on the edge of my blindness as a golden side to the dark.

I have an opportunity to rest, relax, open the boundary of my skin and the false horizons of my mind, come out of this difficult nightmare into a place of awareness. One day, I take it. I surrender, I listen with my whole self. The totality flutters awake like a newborn eye, and everything I see is a dream; everything I see is myself, dreaming. Most important, I feel myself as Home, as the invisible condition, where each mysterious surface reflects my own light.

This is the place, I realize, where it can be no other way. And this is the place where desire becomes a place of true power...a motion to be enjoyed purely for its own sake. Imagination, then, is not a cruel reminder of what is not. Imagination was never meant to is a realm in which we paint, pray, play, and personalize the absolutely lavish equality we are all possessed of. I am making this world, imaging every second, out of the deep no-thing. Energy bounds from here to there and back again, never really having moved out of its own heart...knowing this (like a lover) unfolds and unbinds imagination, lets me understand its language and instruction as it presents reality for my viewing pleasure.

God, you know, is seeing and unfolding Herself on multiple levels, all for fun, joy, and just be-cause. How could I have ever imagined myself cold, impoverished and lost? How could I have dreamed so much pain? Well--for fun, joy, and to be cause...and effect. There is a certain primary thrill in Being, even when it hurts. When I follow the fire down through the organs and memories and anticipations, down past the ideas of physical, mental or spiritual, past everything I think I know, I inevitably find primal bliss. It is not mature, calm or sacrosanct; neither is it insane or selfish. It is, rather, the feeling behind feeling--a flame that can expand into enveloping sight, be narrowed into a penetrating, laser focus, and become a kiln for the vessel of compassion. It does these things not at my command or behest, but in accordance with a pattern in an order far, far larger than any false idol I might make of myself.

Oh, but what S/H/Me can do! Gratitude, for the lights, sounds and colors...for the touch of your hands, for the easing of my pain. You know who we are!


  1. Ah - the interior fire and the dance of separation! Yes, I know this tune well...

    In my recent dance with the "shadows and phantoms", turning the light of awareness on them, I realized the "feeling behind feeling" is really joy - the "primal bliss"; a joi de vivre - joy of living, joy of life - a deep sense of aliveness. And *everything*, even the "shadows", is a pull to this primal Freedom! WooHoo! :)

    Heart Hugs! Christine

  2. Dearest Maria and Christine,
    God send you guys?!?!?!

  3. Dearest God (Leslie),

    This is to express a most human delight in your XOXO love, making our current dream just that much more divine!


  4. Dear Naria,
    Thank you for that sweet message. Your posts are lovely mergings of words with this heart/mind when I loosen up :)