Rediscover peace

When fear in your body feels too much, when the voices of doom and gloom and ugly rants on the news on social media get you down, when you can’t settle, when your head is filled with anxiety, go outside if you can.

You will feel more clarity and greater calm when you go outside without your shiny device, your ear buds, your blinking object.

If it is not safe to go outside, to breathe the air, imagine yourself in your favorite spot in nature. Use your inner vision to go to a place you love and feel completely safe and comfortable.

Move in comforting ways, walk slow or fast, swing your arms, breathe in the fresh air, move through the shifting shade under old and friendly trees, notice the sights sound smells and the feel of your chosen place on this Earth.

Summer grasses

Let your awareness reside in your heart, your body, your senses. Let thoughts from your logical mind and the demands of your ego float in and out like clouds, knowing they are not reality. Do not give them any power by clutching or grasping onto them.

Notice the colors of your world, the flow of the creek or river, the animals and birds, the plant life, the clouds, sky patterns, tree growth, the blooming flowers.

Feel your feet meeting Mother Earth. Feel her support of you. Feel your lungs filling and emptying as your chest rises and falls. Feel the movement of your limbs swinging in rhythm.

Feel the energy of fear leaving your being with each out breath. Feel anxiety melting away as you hug and lean on a friendly tree, letting the tree with deep roots support your weight and connect your heart to the heart of the Earth.

GCW in fall

Let the weight of your worries drain away into the earth for this moment. Mother Earth will neutralize the energy of excess fear, anxiety, and dread.

You may be absorbing unpleasant emotional energy from the collective mind, from other people and groups. Let it go! Let it drain away into the Earth. It is not yours to carry.

When you can get out of your head and spend time in nature, you can rediscover peace.

Rediscover Your Inner Child

Just be, for a moment or an hour, like a child without a care, living in grace, enjoying all that life has to offer your senses and your heart.

Lie on the earth, soaking in her familiar healing energy. See the petals fall like snow flakes from spent wildflowers. Look up into the layered treetops. Above and beyond them the circling birds of prey riding the updrafts.

Watch the clouds drift and shift and assume fanciful shapes, then morph into something new. Watch the treetops sway and dance, hear the leaves whisper, watch the dappled shade dance across the green grass, tiny colorful birds visiting, feeding, bathing, taking flight.

In this moment you judge nothing; you fear nothing. You have no worries, no doubts, no distractions, no need to hurry. You exist in the divine grace of this moment and the next and the next.

For this moment you have no agenda. You soak in life, absorb the vibrations of nature, understanding your oneness with All- That- Is. For this moment, this hour, your being has no need of words.

Let yourself relax into this pure silence and pure grace of this moment, merging with all that is.

In this way you rediscover the heart of your inner child.

Simple Steps

Dear ones, you are needed on this planet now living up to your full light and power, owning and practicing your skills and sharing your talents, at your best in body mind and spirit.

If you feel dull, diminished, small, take one step toward your health and well-being today. Don’t overthink or complicate things. Start small. Start at the beginning.

Message from GCW

Change one thought. Consciously bring in a new thought that is in harmony with you and your desires in life. Little by little, day by day, new more hopeful thoughts will begin to create a lighter and more positive background to your life.

Do one physical stretch or movement or short walk that will remind your body that you are alive. Let your body move in ways that feel good to you. There is no need to break a sweat or call it a workout.

Take one mindful breath. Inhale and exhale. Pay attention to what you are feeling in your body during this breath. If you want to, take a second mindful breath.

When you are alone, let yourself feel an emotion. Name it. Notice where it shows up in your body, how it changes and moves as you pay attention to it. Let it go on an out-breath by doing safe physical movements, making sounds or vocalizing words in your private space.

Do one simple thing each day to strengthen yourself, to feel better.

In this moment

Take a moment to celebrate the fullness of your life. Know that all is well in this moment.

Your heart beats in your chest, your in-breath expands your lungs, the out-breath releases and contracts, the slow and sweet rhythm of life flowing and ebbing like waves on a beach.

You have been given the simple yet miraculous gifts of sunlight, fresh air, birdsong, eyes, hands, ears… the senses through which you experience life in your body.

Robin in late winter

If you are a worrier, anxious, fearful or regretful, you might miss the perfection of this moment here and now, the still point between breaths, the simple yet most precious gift of life.

Bring your awareness to your now. Yes, life here on our planet can be difficult and dangerous, fragile, fleeting, unjust, and heartbreaking. Please do not allow fear grief and anger to steal the fullness of this moment here and now as you partake in the beautiful mystery of life on Earth.

Let your mind rest and bring full awareness to the perfection of this particular moment. In this moment, you are safe, you are alive.

Allow yourself to enjoy and appreciate the most precious gift you’ve been given. Life on Earth in a human body.

Take the Time You Need

Dear ones, It is vital to take the time you need to heal, to grieve, to grow, to be. Allow yourself to take the time you need

Even if it is to pause in an overcrowded day so you can take a deep breath, to feel your chest, ribs, and belly expand with life giving oxygen. Pause a moment to fill yourself, then slowly release with full attention.

Surely you have the time to do this, to give this moment of calm to yourself.

Grandmother Cottonwood

You might pause a moment to notice the feelings and sensations in your body- where they are located, their quality, intensity, the fleeting nature, how they shift and change with your breath.

Pause for a brief time in your crazy busy day and pay attention to this moment. Feel the weight of your hands in your lap, the balance of your head on your neck and shoulders, your feet contacting the floor or earth, your body’s contact with the chair.

You are paying attention to being in a body and loving yourself in these small and simple ways. Let yourself feel and be without judgment, without worry or hurry.

Have you bound yourself with too many shoulds and oughts and must do’s, striving for an impossible perfection? I ask you to come back to your body, your breath, the stillness at your center beneath all the surface flotsam, the noise and the rushing from point A to point B.

When you learn to quiet your crazy busy life for several moments each day, you will learn to know and love your true and deep self once again as you knew yourself as a child.

The river speaks

I am ceaseless and timeless. I flowed past the camps of your ancestors in ancient times, and I flow now under the concrete and steel bridges of your streets and highways, between fields of corn and beans. I flow past the towns and factories through forests and wetlands.

Life flows endlessly here- always the same, always new and fresh.

I may change course over time, undercut and topple the tallest trees, cut through solid stone, shape and carve the landscape.

I carry much that you choose to discard, your pollution and garbage. It becomes part of me. Is this what you want?

I rise and flood in spring, after the long winter freeze, swelling and spreading expanding beyond my banks. I pick up speed and power.

Do not argue with a flooded river!

My ripples respond to the most delicate vibrations of wind and weather and light and water currents, to rumblings in the earth, the movements of the stars.

The sun reflects and creates sparkles and dancing bands of light in my depths. You might sit near me and meditate on my hypnotizing moving light and water show. Find peace here.

Sunlit ripples on shallow water

I provide a home for the water dwellers, the fish of all descriptions, crustaceans, insects, the tadpoles and frogs, turtles, food for the fur-bearers and birds, a place of thirst quenching for all.

I grind and polish rough stones to smooth. I grind and polish smooth stones to sand. I compress sand into sandstone. Do not ask me how or why. It is in my nature to do so.

I run under the open sky at night, only the stars and moon lighting me in the uninhabited places. I move under the earth in complete darkness, carving the structure of this planet into caves of great complexity and beauty.

I am the river of life that flows through your ancient memory into your present and on toward the future.

It is my purpose to collect the waters of the earth and channel them effortlessly, to cleanse and shape the earth, to reach oneness with the great waters at the end of my journey… which is only the beginning.

Strike spiritual gold

Have you locked in on a particular object that you “must have”? Do you feel your life is incomplete if you do not meet the income level of your dreams or own the shiny new car?

Take a moment to look around you without judgment. Bring your awareness to your heart.

Grasshopper and purple cone flower

In this moment, even though you may not have “made it” in comparison with your neighbors, family, and friends, when you quiet your ever busy mind and churning thoughts and take time to make friends with your true self and listen deeply to the longings of your heart, you will know that in this moment you are safe, you are whole, you are complete.

You knew this as a child, you can know it again!

You are safe, whole and complete with or without the higher income, the rare collectible object, the advanced degree, the life partner, the new house, the labor saving devices, the newest phone, the designer clothes and shoes, the high end jewelry, …(the list is endless, isn’t it?)

Slow down and get to know who you really are beyond all the things, all the education, the money, beyond the striving, planning and wanting.

You will strike spiritual gold when you get to know your true heart and genuine self.

Let yourself be

Can you let yourself breathe and feel the breath in your body, entering, filling, and emptying?

Can you let yourself relax, letting go of any tension in your body, letting your chair support you?

Can you let yourself absorb the sounds and sights and smells surrounding you, the sensory reality of this moment?

Can you let yourself be without texting a friend, jumping up to do a chore, remembering an errand you left undone, sending a message, planning the next meal, worrying about your appearance, feeling guilty about something you said…?

Can you let yourself simply be for a few minutes each day?

Can you let yourself be with no agenda, no plan of action, no time filling chores?

Can you let yourself be without judgment, without worry, doubt or guilt, with no anxiety?

Rippling water

Can you allow yourself to simply be in this moment, a living being on this planet one with all things, one with the web of life?

Come back home to yourself

Beneath all the noise and cacophony of headlines, arguing pundits competing and posturing for ratings with the ugliest most outrageous or inflammatory stories;

Beneath the constant traffic noise, the heavy vibrations of earth movers, the rushing sirens, jet engines with their off the charts decibel levels;

Beneath the rushing to work or appointments, the constant push to be somewhere else, then somewhere else again;

Monarch butterfly on blazing prairie star

Beneath all this constant hum and ceaseless activity and useless arguing and controversy lies the inner peace, the serenity of your spirit.

It is the one unchanging constant in your life, from cradle to grave and beyond; the foundation of your existence, the ground of your being.

When the rushing and worrying become too much, when stress overwhelms you, come back home to your heart and body and your resilient spirit.

Park your car. Turn off the news. Turn off the constant hum and irrelevance of the TV. Tune into the quiet and calm at your center.

Let your breathing slow and deepen, let your awareness come to your heart. Know that you are so much more than the outward trappings of life – the worry and fear, the job, the news, your political party, your race or religion, your schedule, your to-do list…

Yellow swallowtail on zinnia

You are an expansive and indestructible spirit living in a body with peace at your center. Know this and come back home to your true self.

Become water – a shamanic journey

Can you imagine with your heart and mind and all your senses, your body dissolving and becoming one with a stream of water? First, imagine yourself there in the stream, floating. Feel the silky water supporting your body as you float.

Now breathe and relax any tension in your head and face, your neck, shoulders, trunk, arms and hands, back, buttocks, legs, feet and toes.

Feel your physical reality gently dissolve and merge with the stream of water, allowing more and more space between your cells, letting any pain or anxiety drain away, releasing all worry, all fear, just letting yourself be. Don’t worry about breathing as water, it will come naturally.

Sunlight on shallow water

Can you imagine your cells gently becoming water droplets and moving easily with the flow of the current? Can you imagine yourself growing transparent? How does it feel, smell, look and sound like?

Nothing is more relaxed! You are suspended in the water, one with the water. You are the water!

There is nothing you have to do, nowhere to be, nothing to grasp, clutch, hold on to or resist. There is no need to hold yourself up, to think or worry or fight against. You float free, allowing the current to carry you.

Can you feel yourself flow easily around boulders, rushing where the stream bed is steep, falling over stone ledges, standing still in deep pools? Can you feel the warm sunlight striking the water and see it bending into the vibrant colors of the rainbow?

Now your stream merges with a larger river. Enjoy the beautiful landscape as you drift past; the trees, the wide river valley, as you flow smoothly, one with the life-giving water.

Now after many hundreds of miles, you enter a huge estuary, full of birds and wildlife of all descriptions, drawn to the life-giving waters. The river widens out and becomes salty as you enter the ocean surf and move out beyond the crashing waves into open water. Finally, you are home, where all water joins to become one. Here you can expand even more, suspended. One with all that is.

Enjoy the sensation of oneness with the water as long as you want to. Allow the water to clear and heal you. Allow it to sustain and support you. Let yourself be.

When you’re ready to call back your physical being and find your way back to solid earth, let your feet touch the floor, tap your cheekbones and chest, breathe.

Revisit this water journey whenever you want to relax and know your oneness with all that is.