Friday, July 22, 2016

"Your Liberation is Bound to Mine."

                                                                        Lilla Watson

"Your Liberation is Bound to Mine," was the title of a workshop I read about on my recent travels down the Pacific coast from Washington, through Oregon to Northern California in June. The workshop, in Astoria, Oregon, was designed to educate and protest against the routine practice of the enormous corporate conglomerations, like Mansanto, who control local farming and the big business of tampering with our food sources while routinely bringing in illegal Mexican workers, who they underpay and don't defend when they are subject to violence, designation as illegal aliens and subsequent deportation. The phrase struck me as a clear, concise and accurate statement of what seems irrevocably true to me, about how things work.

Since then, the devastating events between  police and those whom they are designed to protect, the ongoing challenges of racial inequality as well as all types of bias that foster outrage in our own country, as well as the increasing horror of daily terrorist attacks around the world, occurring at a time when we are more able than ever to be in communication with one another through the advances that we ourselves have created through the internet and social media, make it all the more paradoxical that we continue to ignore this concept that our humanity is bound up inextricably with one another as well as our planet.

On further investigation, I found that the phrase is credited originally to an indigenous Australian, or Murri, artist /activist/ academic by the name of Lilla Watson, who works in the field of women's issues and Aboriginal Epistlemology. She was hesitant to accept the phrase as her own, stating that she was, "not comfortable being credited with a phrase that was born of a collective process" and prefers that it be credited to "Aboriginal activists group, Queensland, 1970's."



The full phrase,

" If you have come here to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together,"

is seen in the poster at the top of this page.

Dune Shack Dharma is all about slowing down enough to be present to our own skin and environment, our thumping heartbeat humming with aliveness to the thrumming of every other thing, where everything is already connected. Everything that pulls us away from that presence is what leads us to the fear engendered by the mental constructs of our intellect. It leads us to separation, destruction, greed and violence. It's in all of us. But so is that infinite seed of creation - the Breath of the New Moment, the End and the Beginning.

I salute you Life, World, and Everything in It.

Harmonychiroyoga.com

Sunday, January 31, 2016

What is Art?


                                      

     So with the loss of so many icons and inspirations lately while the rest of us continue slogging along trying to make art in the midst of whatever else we do, (it can seem just a bit overwhelming at times, can't it?), I found myself asking recently, what IS Art anyway?  I had to slow down from the doctor, teacher, student, family member, business owner trying to write a book production line for a bit, close my eyes, and get quiet enough to even ask the question.

     Luckily, I am not the first person to have wondered. It turns out, when one goes looking, that just about everyone has something to say on the subject. I felt buoyed by some of what I found. Here are some of my favorites, from various sources including -- 27 Responses to the Question, "What is Art?" Mental Floss 6/27/2014, the ever brilliant Maria Popover on her equally fascinating site, Brain Pickings and 37 Books Every Creative Person Should be Reading from Buzz Feed.


                                          Jane Castellon     January 26, 2016
     
     "All art is autobiographical; the pearl is the oyster's autobiography." --Frederico Fellini

     "I'm a worker, and I do everything with the same conviction, whether I'm taking photographs or performing or painting or writing. I'm the same person." --Patti Smith

     "Art is a revolt, a protest against extinction." --Andre Malraux

     "Art is not, as the metaphysicians say, the manifestation of some mysterious idea of beauty or God, it is not, as the aesthetical physiologists say, a game in which man lets off his excess of stored-up energy, it is not the expression of man's emotions by external signs, it is not the production of pleasing objects, and above all, it is not pleasure; but it is a means of union among men, joining them together in the same feelings, and indispensable for the life and progress toward well-being of individuals and humanity."
And, "To evoke in oneself a feeling one has experienced, and...then, by means of movements, lines, colors, sounds or forms expressed in words, so to transmit that feeling--this is the activity of art." 
--Leo Tolstoy  (What is Art - 1890)

     "The craftsmen knows what he wants to make before he makes it...the making of a work of art...is a strange and risky business in which the maker never knows quite what he is making until he makes it."  R.G. Collingwood (The Principles of Art - 1938)

     "At the center of everything we call 'the arts' and children call 'play' is something which seems somehow alive." --Lynda Bang (What it Is)

"Life is short, art is long." --Seneca's rendering of Hippocrates Aphorisms

Or, as William Carlos Williams put it,

"It is difficult
to get the news from poems
yet men die miserably every day
for lack
of what is found there."

Carry On, Great Ones....
             

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What Matters

"Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least." --Goethe

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Resistance

This is the great truth that I need constant reminding of. This is what being alone in a Dune Shack for a week at a time teaches me to remember. This is what meditating, art and poetry reveal to me over and over. This is what allows me to love when I could just be angry. This is God to me.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

I Am



Breathe deep, focus
the mind, faster than the hand,
slower than Light, strong,
needs a leash or
an invitation at least,
a beckoning, the Call,
     of the Infinite at best, 
"Return, Return, I have never left You.
  I am your One and Only."

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Contemplating and Listening


I read somewhere that the word heart appears more than 800 times in the Old Testament and is described as the literal medium of communication between God and Man.

Hmmm.

In her book For the Time Being, Annie Dillard says, "We are Earth's organs and limbs; we are syllables God utters from his mouth." 

I love that.

What I know for sure is that I have to stay true, stay in touch, stay heart-centered, and listen from there, or all bets are off.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

The Rapture


This is how William Stafford put it one day - 

Malheur before Dawn

An owl sound wandered along the road with me.
I didn't hear it--I breathed it into my ears.

Little ones at first, the stars retired, leaving polished little circles on the sky for awhile.

Then the sun began to shout from below the horizon. Throngs of birds campaigned, their music a tent of sound.

From across a pond, out of the mist,
one drake made a V and said its name.

Some vast animal of air began to rouse
from the reeds and lean forward.

Frogs discovered their national anthem again. I didn't know a ditch could hold so much joy.

So magic a time it was that I was both brave and afraid. Some day like this might save the world.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Now Is All

"Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart."
                                                                                                       Steve Jobs, Commencement Address

"Optimism is a political act. Those who benefit from the status quo are perfectly happy for us to think nothing is going to get any better. In fact, these days, cynicism is obedience." 
                                                                                                         Alex Steffon, The Bright Green City

"The human definition of the natural world is always going to be too small, because the world is more diverse and complex than we can ever lnow. We're not going to comprehend it, it comprehends us."
                                                                                                         Wendell Berry,  Digging In
                                                                                                                               

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Like it's Air



Sometime last night, or maybe early this morning, 
Alice left her body. 


     My mother-in-law had been struggling, in and out of the hospital for short stays for the last few months. When she went back to the hospital yesterday, no one really thought she'd be gone today. Minutes before my husband called to tell me, I had drawn a picture in my journal of something I woke up with last night and remembered this morning. I thought it was me. Now I don't.


You've had those moments, haven't you? We've all had them--when we understand, that we're connected in some way that has nothing to do with our physical bodies or conversations. We may not know exactly how it works, but we still know. We know it so deeply, that we forget, we take it for granted, like the air we breathe.
     Here's to you Alice, thank you for being my mother-in-law. I loved you. I will always love you.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Word on the Street

Doreen Birdsell Photography

Most of the readers of this blog have already heard the Word on the Universal Street that events around the globe urge us to move, promptly, in the direction of getting a grip on the Co-Creation with Consciousness concept. It bears repeating though, doesn't it?  Words like,

"...partners in creation, stewards of the Earth's well-being, and conscious participants in the cosmic epic of evolution," 

to quote Jean Houston for instance, are familiar to many of you, yes? If not, please contact me immediately for a remedial reading and viewing list. 

As for me, I know that I have to regularly DO things to help align my thinking intentionally with a higher view of what's going on down here. I have to read smart and inspiring material, meditate and contemplate, be in nature, move my body, look at the creations of others and be with other people creating things or, I'm probably going to end up being mean to someone I love, (could be me), eating or drinking something or just more than what is beneficial to me, or avoiding something that I have the longing and intention to accomplish. 

Moving in the direction of higher consciousness is, at it turns out, not only a support to humanity and the planet, but it's also a support to me. OH! What a coincidence! Doing what's good for humanity and the planet FEELS BETTER to me too!  As Donald Epstein, beloved founder of Network Spinal Analysis and coiner of the phrase and movement called "Reorganizational Healing", has said,
     
     "If there's a discrepancy between who you truly are and the life that you're leading, if you're not playing at the top of your game, it's supposed to hurt! That's how you know!"

The phrase "Constant Vigilance" comes to mind. That's what it takes for me. The Good News is: I get thrown off track much less often than I used to, no matter what the circumstances, I'm quicker at re-aligning when I start to discombobulate, and I am more honest about what I need to do today and for-EVER, in order to continue evolving myself. Thanks for your patience.

Monday, December 29, 2014

MASTERY



"Someday, after mastering the winds, the waves, the tides and gravity, we shall harness for God the energies of love, and then, for a second time in the history of the world, man will have discovered fire."  Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Quote of the Day...

"What would have to change - no, what would I have to change - in order to feel more engaged, enthusiastic, and fulfilled with my life?" Brendon Burchard


This picture of Washington is a reminder to me of one of my visions - returning to Orcas Island. I believe this inquiry needs to be ongoing, daily. What must I do today to continue to move in the direction of my intentions, dreams and visions? Then? Schedule it. This year I've learned to use the timer on my cell phone, for even very small increments, to make sure I get in the things that make a difference for me - read, write, meditate, move. Those things must happen every day in order for me to do everything else without collapse. How about you? What's your vision, and how are you going about creating it?

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Support Life

   
     I posted this photo on Face Book and Twitter yesterday, Veteran's Day. I didn't say anything about that though, I hadn't formulated what I thought about it yet. In fact, I had been taking a little nap in my car. I was feeling depleted, the result of some recent challenges, investigation and cleaning of my internal house. That was the reason I went to the beach in the first place. I needed to rest and be healed by the sea.

    I opened the windows of my car on the still warm day, laid my head on the headrest, closed my eyes, and rested my spirit, nourished by the smell of the sea air and the sounds of November at the beach. The next time I opened my eyes, at four something in the afternoon, there was the image of the sun, lowering in the sky in front of me and shining on the car parked next to me. A few people, maybe half a dozen, wandered the shoreline, or just stood looking out. A couple, like me, sat in their cars.

    That is when I began to think about Veteran's Day. Today I offer this prayer.
 

         May we remember, the loss of all those from every country, throughout time, who have died at the hands of war.


         May we, who have stayed at home, offer gratitude to those who risked their lives, their limbs, their minds, and their hearts on the fields, skies and waters of battle in the attempt to protect the lands and lives of those they loved.


        Most importantly, may we fervently envision and assist in creating an evolution and  future for humanity that does not include killing as an acceptable solution to resolving our conflicts.


       May we learn to nourish and support Life as our planet has done for us throughout our time here.


       May we know our place in the Universe and offer our Love and our Lives in Gratitude.     








Monday, November 3, 2014

How to Inspire



If you want to build a ship, don't drum up people together to collect wood and don't assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.
               ANTOINE DE SAINT-EXUPERY

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Why Write?



I write because I love. I write because I don't know how to live without saying out-loud what is true for me at this moment, to clarify. I write because I don't know how to keep it all in without letting some out. I write because this beauty and pathos is so overwhelming -- it is impossible to bear, without exclaiming. I write because I need to. I write because I love words, their sound and ability to turn sound into meaning. I write because language is how we perceive this world and I have an enormous amount of words spewing and spilling about. I write because there is something inside that says, I long to reach you, to tell you how I see it, because if I don't, there is no one else who can. I write because I believe in everyone's story, even my own. I write because history is made up of each of these stories, and I claim my place at the fireside. I write, because it's easier than lugging an 8x10 foot canvas around every minute of the day. I write because it requires no one or nothing else besides me a pen and a page. I write because I have always written - lies, truth, story, memory, impossible dreams, regrets, angers, resentments, sorrows, songs, poems, thank you's, and prayers.

It's a Practice, it's an Art, it's a Commitment.

“Poetry is somebody standing up, so to speak, and saying, with as little concealment as possible, what it is for him or her to be on earth at this moment.” Galway Kinnell

It's a practice, it's an art, it's a commitment.




Monday, October 27, 2014

This is Why...



           I rejoice at living in a place where natural beauty is so present. I took this photo this morning at a place that I frequently walk to, not because of the way the sun is beaming down on everything, though lovely, or because of the water that surrounds us here on Cape Cod like God. No. I took the picture because of the chairs. Right? What would this photograph be, without the chairs?

          I've been walking here from my house for sixteen years, but it was only a few months ago that these two chairs appeared one day. This is a remote little neighborhood spot with a small dock just big enough for one or two dingys, a hose to rinse off a boat, and now, these two chairs. 

         Over the years in various places that I've had the good fortune to live, I've observed that, people who live in naturally splendid places often choose not just to treasure, but to add to that beauty. I know that this isn't always true, that humans frequently fail to respect, understand and take good care of this Earth, and I know that we don't all have the same ideas about what adding to nature might look like. But isn't it wonderful when someone offers something so simple, two plastic chairs, giving us a place to pause, and be grateful?




Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Life as Art

                                                                               photo - Jenna Bauer


Here is a statement I love from a painter I know. It was written as the statement for a show she had in 2013. You can visit her website at www.JennaBauer.com

"Life must be a form of art,
and neither life nor art is ever at rest.

Even in the greatest stillness there is  molecular hum
that completes life. The gesture of the arc in my work 
is representative of this fact.

Every second of each moment is an important instance of 
expression whether or not it may eventually manifest
in a physical or non-physical form.

Consider every moment along the path of physical or non-
physical manifestation as the work of art. What happens 
while a work of art is approaching conception, creation
and completion is inherently part of the work.

I acknowledge the connections between my work and myself
and myself and the world as a singular being's effort of
expression and purpose.

My practice depend on close attention  to these details and 
the totality of work I do and make. Every effort is vital. 
No moment is inconsequential."

Doesn't that just say it all? Thanks Jenna.



Saturday, October 18, 2014

Sustainable Truths

I recently heard someone use a phrase that I'd first heard years ago in a course that I took through Landmark Education. The phrase, "Life is a Conversation,"  made a lot of sense to me at the time. The concept, that all of our sensorial perceptions and experiences are translated into words that we use to describe, evaluate and make sense of things, creating internal stories that we carry around as our experience of reality, was pretty flashy -- something glittering, easy to reach for.

When I heard it again though, I realized that I don't actually believe that anymore. Today I believe that a more accurate statement is that life appears to us as the conversations we're carrying around in our heads, but that isn't what life actually is. There's an important distinction between an insight, a momentary flash of understanding of a concept like life is a conversation, and a deeper, ongoing engagement, practice and contemplation of something, beyond the weekend workshop into daily living.

Thankfully over the years I've had the grace to have had teachers and teachings that have given me tools, like meditation, that have enabled me to practice being present in my body and the moment. The result has been a continual skin shedding -- peeling away layers of dead stuff to the raw new life beneath. I've also been blessed with various communities  for ongoing and intimate observation, feedback, and company on the path of self-inquiry.

So, what then, do I believe life is? I think it's an important question to ask from time to time. Exactly what the hell is going on here? Not that any of has the keys to the palace on that one, but it seems important to at least wonder, deeply. One thing I know for starters, is that life is not limited to my own or anyone else's personal experience of it. Another thing that seems true to me about life is that there is no such thing as "my" life. I exist within life, life is having me, expressing itself through me as a part of itself.

So the big question for me then is, if Life is generous enough to give me all this, then what am I offering back to Life? That's the one that life lets me consider, every day.




.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

IMMERSION


Each morning as I begin to write, the first moments are like my first steps into water. Whether it's the ocean,  a swimming pool, even a shower,  hot or cold, quickly or slowly, sooner or later, it's going to lead to a full body immersion and it's going to change me.

It is a rare day when I don't get into water somehow, but on those days, I feel different all day, not fully clean or awake. There are other things -- meditating, chanting, hatha yoga, painting, walking,  that can wake me up to life. The important thing isn't how, it's that. That I do.

Close eyes. Focus on sound, sensation, breath. Observe thinking, go behind, to awareness of awareness. 

Ah. There you are. Hello.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Poetic Slam

In the early hours before dawn the unconscious comes through unpatterned, unwalled pathways like a speeding bullet.

You can speak through the dog's mouth, listen to the child's breath, know the rustle of a mountain tick, a hare's hide. Healthy is the appetite of the unfettered mind.

The poetic slam is not the closing of a door, but the sound of the mind banging loudly against formerly held assumptions, lies, deceptions and those who wield power, while searching new territory.

"The clearest way into the Universe, is through a forest wilderness." John Muir

Raven #7      Artist: Lynne Huras

Monday, June 2, 2014

Community

6/1/14

What I know now, after years of continued reading, observing and practicing, is that I have nothing new to say about being on a conscious journey. Mystics, saints and seekers have said the same thing for as long as we have recorded history -- that we are a part of the one continuous fabric of creation, and various different practices – yoga, meditation, prayer, chanting, contemplation, silence, for example can lead us to the experience of that.  The classic plea of the seeker to the master, “Make me one with everything”, is impossible, because we already are, it isn’t something anyone else can make happen to us.


However, when I read the words of people recounting an experience of something that pierced them right through all the forgetfulness to the core of their remembering, I am grateful; I remember again myself. And that is, I believe, the reason I continue to write. We are not meant to do this alone, it is in community, that we experience the joy of the simple and mesmerizing truth of our limitless connectedness to Everything. The trick, the challenge these days, with the vastness of the internet, is how best to actually connect out there. It's like reaching into the sky, into outer space, for a hand to hold. Well, here's mine..

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

From Myth to Magic


 The main mentor for the Re-Organizational Healing work that I do with health and wellness practice members in my office, is Dr. Donald Epstein. In his book Healing Myths, Healing Magic he takes thirty-one ideas about health and healing common to our culture and breaks them down into the categories of Social, Bio-Medical, Religious and New Age. He then follows each of what he calls the "Myths" with a "Healing Magic" statement. I have found through a workshop that I lead in my office on this book that many of his statements cause us to stop and examine the "myths", with a new, often very beneficial lens. 

Here's an example:

                                                               New Age

"Myth: I am responsible for creating my reality. 

MAGIC: I am not responsible for creating my external reality. I am responsible for my internal state of mind, emotion, and vibration. I am responsible for focusing my attention on my inner environment in relationship to my life circumstances. It is my gift to become aware of the state of tension, pain, or ease in my bodymind, and to accept my experiences - pleasant or unpleasant - with non-judgement and love."

What are your thoughts? I'd love to hear from you. 
You can also contact me through my website harmonychiroyoga.com 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

HONESTY

     I went to a meeting this morning where honesty was the topic. A never ending contemplation, that one. Afterwards I ate brunch at a neighborhood restaurant. Upscale, French, when I eat there alone I am, like today, the only solitary diner there. I don't mind at all. Dining alone is a personal vacation for me - allowing me time to sit, think, observe, read, write.

     A pause in the background jazz while the musicians take a break reveals the underlying sounds inherent to a place like this - laughter from every direction, the clicking of silver on china, the hum of a dishwasher just for glasses in the bar, snippets of  light conversation, a scooper plunging into the ice machine the tinkling of cubes entering glasses, the rhythmic shooshing of martinis and ice in a shaker, the general hum of people content with their food, their friends and their lives, every table full of these people. Or so it would seem.

     The man whose back is directly in front of me sits on top of a green sweater, its long sleeves hanging off the sides of the chair onto the floor and then curling up like puppets about to speak to one another. He is large, and like his sleeves, overflows from his tight cotton t-shirt, his belt and his bluejeans into the space all around him. A woman within my line of vision at another table sits with her three companions, silent, unsmiling, her eyes often clouding over with disassociation. She is isolating, separating in the midst of the hurdy-gurdy here. Yet she is not at all alone; I see her so clearly.

     I am thinking of Philip Seymour Hoffman. Actor extraordinaire, found dead one week ago today, a needle in his arm, bags of heroin scattered around his New York city apartment. A tragedy, for him, his children, all of us who will no longer be receiving the gift of his brilliant, empathic work. Why, how, do we continue existing, some of us, when others don't? What allows our light to remain at least somewhat intact, unextinguished by the hazards, the brutality in the world we live in, the world we have created? If, like the woman above, the capacity to disengage, to mute, to dim, exists within us without outside assistance, or when that fails, we have created infinite avenues for smaller doses of invisibility, why then the need for extreme measures? How does the need for darkness become so great, the mechanism for inner regulation so overloaded,  that one destroys the machine altogether? What tips the scale?

     The musicians have come back to their places, the music resumes, I return to my goat cheese asparagus crepe and my St. Germaine martini. I do not choose heroin today.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

The Sublime and the Abyss

"You do not have to sit outside in the dark. If however you want to look at the stars, you find that darkness is necessary." Annie Dillard

Everything leads to this. This is how it works, how it is - the paradox of the absolutely sublime and the completely absurd, sitting within us, next to one another, like poorly placed guests at a dinner party - slightly startled, certainly dismayed, but putting up a good front as they try to make the best of it, and often do.



Sunday, November 3, 2013

Finding Meaning

This is what I know today:  that we are all groping for meaning and connection and that we seek it, and often find it, in nature.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

INNER TREASURES



A footnote from the introduction to Gurumayi Chidvilasananda's book, Inner Treasures, says that according to Avinagupta, who is sometimes referred to as the expounder of the Pratnabijna tradition of Kashmir Shaivism:

Artistic expression is a natural link to divine knowledge.


Friday, October 4, 2013

Everybody's Meditating, why aren't you?


Catchy, no?

The truth is, I am meditating. Meditation is my closest friend, my dearly beloved. I was just wondering, if you haven't been meditating, lately, or maybe never, why not?

Here is what I know about meditation -
It has saved me, countless times.
When I have forgotten, resisted, or just failed to make time for it, unlike other relationships, meditation has never felt hurt, forsaken, or been resentful. Just the opposite.

I have been actively following a path of meditation, through all kinds of weather, for twenty-seven years now. We just had our anniversary in September.

Just this summer, meditation yielded up to me a whole new level of experience that has brought even greater peace, expansion and wonder than in all the previous years. I am more in love with meditation now than ever.

Sitting outside, early in the morning, listening to my breath moving quietly in and out, in and out, for some time, and then - two new things --

Breathing in my own discomfort, anger, loneliness, distraction, resentments, obsessions -
Breathing out  - ease, compassion.
Again.
And again.

Soon, my circle expands.
Breathing in pain, fear, cynicism, of people I know, and people I don't.
Far away, people tramping through dangerous, unfamiliar land, escaping war torn homes,
carrying only their children and the clothes on their backs. People who have lost faith, for generations.
Breathing in their fear, despair, rage, breathing out - ease, compassion.
Again. And again.

Then, the smooth bark of the trees beside me, their leaves, the growing, the dying, the young, the broken, and the breeze, carrying the scents of everything, the ocean at the end of my street, the cows in the field in between. The breath of it all, comes in, and goes out.

Thin, translucent skin. I am permeable tissue, wondering if the waves are speaking to us in a language we have not yet translated, if the pattern of reflected light on them is morse code for truths we have yet to understand about the places that the water has traveled and all that it knows. I am breathing out ease and compassion for the earth and the wounds we have created there.

Now, each day I cannot wait to meditate. And I think, everything, everywhere, is meditating, even if you think you aren't, look again. You are. Look, breathe, observe.
There you are, already, meditating.
Hello, welcome.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

But What Are You REALLY thinking?



That what I'm most interested in, is living a life not so much about helping people, but about being with myself and others, deeply, fully alive, awake, creatively. My experience is that the greatest help that people experience when we work together often comes from exactly that – being fully present with them and allowing them to be exactly as they are, with whatever experience they’re currently having. That when we're fully present to our experience, to the best of our capacity, no resistance, excuses, defenses, denial - then blockages dissolve, shifts happen organically, it’s the nature of living things, of life, to create and dissolve, again and again.

As a yoga teacher and Reiki practitioner, when I became a Network chiropractor, using the Reorganizational Healing techniques of Somato-Respiratory Integration and Network Spinal Analysis, my capacity to help people, as well as my outreach expanded. People, who might not take a yoga class to begin with, often do seek out assistance from some type of doctor or health care practitioner. Many of my practice members have benefited from the principles and practices gleaned from my yoga and Reiki training and practice that are integrated into my work as a Network chiropractor. Some of them have gone on to become yoga and Reiki practitioners themselves as well.

Before becoming a chiropractor, yoga teacher and Reiki practitioner, though, I studied and worked as a painter, an actress and performance artist, a director, and, more recently, a writer. I juggled and performed in mask on the streets of San Francisco, did theatre in NYC for a tour of homeless shelters, wrote articles about healing from Cystic Fibrosis and burying loved ones at home. Even as a child, there was never been a time that I can remember not thinking of myself as some kind of artist / creator. 

Recently I looked up the dictionary definition of art and found quite a few definitions. Here's one of my favorites:

"a skill at doing a specific thing, typically one acquired through practice."

Exactly.

Abhinavagupta, a Kashmir Shaivite guru who lived over a thousand years ago, taught and practiced artistic expression as a natural link to divine knowledge.

Being a practitioner of a "healing art", practicing health, from that point of view, is an ocean of possibility.  For those of us who believe, as I do, that our opportunity while we're here on earth has something to do with learning that we're not separate from one another, that we're all part of one teeming, oozing, mass of life, then how do we live into that more fully in our daily lives? 

"ViolinCello" Wood Engraving by Evan Charney
I also found this wonderful phrase in my search:

"art is long, life is short", with the explanation that - "there is so much knowledge (or skill) to acquire that a lifetime is not sufficient."

If living itself holds the potential to be our ultimate artistic endeavor, and I believe it does, then the life that we carve out of our time here is our most complex and sophisticated creation isn't it? 

Who's with me here?