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Cracked Raw

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When life slices you right open,

Raw, tender, and fully exposed.

Unexpected, spontaneous, and ‘unprepared’.

No time to let in, or attempt to block out.

Simply showing up – unannounced, without ‘permission’.

Bold, clear, unavoidable,

Choiceless, optionless,

Life appears.

 

Sliced wide open I breathe the air,

The air of raw exposure.

Exposure to the raw tides of life.

Exposure to the grittiness of pure humanity.

Exposure to the raw aliveness so vivid and so clear.

 

Feeling the tides pass through every cell,

Making it’s way through like a domino spilling down the chain

Fiercely tasting the presence of life as it moves.

 

Cracked raw, no filters to be found.

No doors closed, no smoke-screens to protect,

Just life in all its raw brilliance.

Nowhere to hide, nowhere to run, nowhere to escape.

Nowhere to “go” but with what’s here.

Ahh, the gift of life.

 

Life moving.

Just as it does, just as it will.

Cracked wide open,

Wide open, to all of life –

Beautifully raw.

Beautifully exposed, open, available.

Oh the preciousness

Just, simply, life …exactly, as it is.

 

Carole Griggs, Ph.D/c, 2012

Life Wide Open

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Is it possible to stay wide open to all of what life brings?
Is it possible to stay wide open to all of life’s experiences, including the challenges, fears, uncertainties, disappointments, and doubts?
Just think for a moment what that might be like to sit in the face of anything that arises, to sit with any and all of what life brings to the surface.
Without turning away, rejecting what shows up, closing off or shutting down – take a close look at what life is really revealing.
Instead of denying what is arising, perhaps it would be wise to see the gift that life is showing.
The gift to see what we might not want to see.
The gift that is actually the doorway into the truth of who we are and what is eclipsing our clarity of this true essence.
Life gives us everything we need to wake up to our true being.
When we can see that what we most fear, what we habitually turn away from, is actually the very doorway to our freedom, we may finally decide to let all of life in.
Humans sometimes have reactions to try to protect from pain, fear, or difficult situations.
But what if we just let all of life in and not have any need to protect, when nothing actually needs protecting?
To simply be with all of it, cradling it as if it’s a newborn baby just entering the world.
Embracing all aspects and deeply allowing it all just like one would love this newborn.
Nurturing all aspects of what shows up allows for this vast freedom, this beautiful mystery,  and this unknown vibrancy called life to be in the fullness, the richness of all its colors.
This is where your freedom lies.
This is actually what you seek.
Right here in the wide open acceptance of all of life.

Carole Griggs, Ph.D/c, 2012

Listening

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We all hear about listening in and around the spiritual sectors.

Listen to the still small voice, listen to your heart, listen inside, listen to God…

But what does it really mean to listen? ..personally and interpersonally?

One of the most important aspects in looking deeply into this is in the recognition of where you are listening from.

 

Listening is a magnetic and interesting thing, a transformative and creative force.

Listening is at the crux of successful partnership relationships, be it with oneself, family, friends, or in a working environment.  If good relationships are the heart and soul of the one thing that would make this world a more harmonious place, the art of listening is a topic that aught to be deeply explored.

Listening invites one to be fully alive, completely engaged, and tapped in to the inner connectedness of love and vibrancy.  Relationships void of listening have the power to disengage, inhibit, and squelch.

Listening communicates values, inner motivation, and purpose within various relations.

Listening can make or break any relationship.

Listening is “seeing” oneself and another.

Listening is absolutely central to communicating and consistently loving.  What is “seen” in oneself, and another, is more important than what is said.  What one “sees” is what is communicated, regardless of verbal exchange.

Listening deeply is born of humility and selfless love.  In this space, the need to speak is gently replaced by the desire to hear.

When listening deeply, there’s a sense of walking side-by-side, pulling in beside another, and cherishing what is seen or being experienced.

Listening deeply is providing space for the birth of new ideas, the willingness to be surprised by new views and insights.

Listening deeply is one of the greatest gifts one can ever give another. The gift to be “seen,” heard, felt, cared for, is a priceless offering.  This seeing takes listening to a deep level.  It allows one to hear and understand things that are beyond the drama of the mortal playground, cherishing the other in the light of their innate divinity.

A listener, undistracted, is present with the speaker.

Listening deeply is a way of being in the world.

Deep listening is not only being present with another, it is being present to the Essence of the oneness of life.

Listening deeply communicates oneness, creates bridges, and connects humankind.

Breaking barriers of perceived differences, listening in Soul with another individual is one of the greatest gifts one could give.

 

The most sincere values held in absolute deep listening consist in and around five main aspects: Truthfulness, gratitude, unity, peace, and love.

 

An individual that deeply listens to another, genuinely values, and has the desire to connect with another individual as one.

Recognizing and living from the basis of oneness allows for partnership relations to flourish.

Living in the space of unity and oneness, there is no separation.  There is no you separate from me; the foundation is “we.”

This togetherness rather than a hierarchical way of operating builds bridges rather than creating gaps and differences.

The more we create separation and division rather than unity and total oneness in this world, the more we will continue to suffer from an inability to communicate and work together in partnership.

 

A deep listener values truthfulness and honesty.

A conversation with someone that listens deeply with truthfulness at heart allows for an honest conversation to be held, without the fear of manipulation or major misinterpretation from lack of clarity.

An honest listener wants nothing more than for the other person to speak their truth, without fear or the need to feel what “should” be said, verses what is really taking place inside.

 

A deep listener values gratitude and appreciation for life and existence itself, just the way it is.

A deep listener has an inner desire to acknowledge another person, without the need to change them.

A listener with a grateful heart appreciates things the way they are, and is not afraid to express it in conversation.

Gratitude and appreciation flow from a listener that doesn’t have the need to dominate, but is free to express whatever arises.

Gratitude and appreciation take the place of fear and force, just as light takes the place of darkness.

 

Listening deeply allows one to understand, to connect, to really “hear” and feel what another is experiencing.  Without this deep basis of understanding, the speaker feels unheard, unknown, and unseen.

Deep listening interactions are compassionate and humble.  There is a clarity that is allowed as another is given the space to self-explore, inquire, and share without interruption, interpretation, personal opinion or experience.

Deep listening gives gracious, patient space for the speaker to go within, to feel and express what’s really being experienced and heard within oneself.  When Soul-based seeing is combined with listening and speaking, there’s a lot less talking and rarely reaction.  The desire to connect deeply, and really understand supersedes anything else, leaving little room for negative reactive response and thoughtless reaction.  Listening appears with quiet fascinated attention, with one’s whole being fully present.

Approaching listening with a renewed freshness and sense of wonder and awe, sheds incredible light and vivid aliveness.  Listening deeply contains few distractions.

There is a sincere commitment to be in the presence of another, and ride their wave. Listening deeply is graceful communion.

Listening from the heart is being open and waiting for the other to speak what is really in their heart.

Conversation slows down and there is time to relax and feel a sense of peace.

An actual sacred space is created between two people when the heart listens.

We become present to the other in such a way that one can feel safe to speak what’s in the heart.

We practice having a sense of wonder and curiosity about another.

Heart listening opens up what is sacred inside, releasing love, utter potential, and inner spice for life

When one is being fully listened to, there’s a capacity to experience the center point, the still space of tranquility and peace.  This opening up gives space to unravel their own solutions, tapping into their own deep awareness that offers clear ideas and progress.

When given this space to go within, there’s an indescribable freedom, sense of aliveness, and full presence that abounds.

Giving someone the gift to “tap in” to their own inner Essence is one of the greatest gifts that can be offered.

Deep listening allows this precious space to unfold.

When people feel “seen,” heard, and loved, they become fully present, fully tapped in, fully engaged, and fully alive.

When fully present, fully tapped in, and fully engaged, ones full potential is ripe to shine.

Being present in our hearts leads to compassion, love, and service.

Giving someone space to be in touch with the higher self…I’m not of sure a greater service that can be offered.

Deep listening is at the core of a more caring, partnership-functioning world.

The deep inner desire to actually “hear” what another is feeling, understanding, experiencing, and hungering to express, opens up channels of communication which otherwise are inhibited and shut down.

Allowing another the quiet, present space to listen, inquire, and explore within their own voice, allows one the opportunity to clearly articulate, bringing about a deeply shared appreciation, gratitude, love, trust, and value to a relationship.  Without these qualities deeply present by all involved, communication is void and empty, producing fear, anger, resentment, distrust, and in harmony.

What greater gift than to allow a deep listening space for another to deeply tap inside, and respond from their central core of Love.

Listening is Love in action.

There is immense power in Love, great power in deep care, immeasurable power in Truthfulness, and incredible power within listening from the essence of that very space.

Carole Griggs, Ph.D/c, 2012

Solace of the Present

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The vibrancy of now.

The only place there is.

Oh the lingering pains of the past,

And the projected fears of the future.

And here, the sweet presence of life as it is.

The solace of life in the only moment there is;

Right here.

Breaking the chains of the minds wander into yesterday and tomorrow.

And basking in the beauty and rest in seeing what’s present.

Marinating in the depth of this moment,

The Reality of life as it truly is.

Where no suffering exists,

Where confusion is void,

And where vivid clarity resides.

The only place there really is,

Right here, in the solace of this precious, sweet moment.

The Doorway

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Sometimes we think we can bypass the pain, the discomfort, the fear, the terror.
Sometimes we believe we can control, avoid, resist, or not feel.
Yet paradoxically,
This very pain, discomfort, fear, and terror,
Is the very doorway to clarity, peace, and fulfillment.
It’s Life knocking on your door,
Saying, look!
Look right here!

There’s something here you believe that is simply not true.

There’s something here you don’t want to see.
There’s something here that needs your tender love and attention.
Be curious.
Don’t turn away from the invitation.
It’s the very invitation to authentic liberation.
Don’t turn away form these precious children, knocking to be held, to be accepted, to be loved.
Soften, open, allow, and see.
Welcome it all home.
Let it all in.
Embrace it, nurture it, and love it all, as you.

Wide Open

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In the clear of the black night,
I relish.
I relish in the joy of life wide open.
Showing up as it does, just as it is.
In all of it’s colors and shades of gray.
In all of it’s beauty, fullness, and movement.
The heart can hold it all.
No need to block out, resist, ignore, nor deny.
No need to pretend, protect, look away, or hide.
The heart can hold it all.
Let Life speak, as it will.
Let Life be open in flow.
It’s here there is joy, freedom, contentment, and fulfillment.
It’s here there is peace, love, clarity, and connection.
It’s here, with your heart wide open, that life is lived in spontaneous vibrancy.
The heart can hold it all.
Wait no more.
Wake up, open up, and live fully alive.

Sweet Stillness of Now

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Are you ready to be free of the “should’s” of the future and the “should have’s” of the past?

What might it feel like to consider that neither of these actually exist?

The mind creates stories, imprisoning you to past thoughts, and suffocating you with future projections.  It’s no wonder humans suffer so much!

But what is it like right here?  Not here in your head with the mind left to run astray, but here in this stillness, this stillness that you are right here and now?

Where are the “should’s” and “should have’s” now, in this spacious stillness?  Can you find them?

Whatever doesn’t exist in this still presence, doesn’t actually exist.  It’s just a story of something from the past or a projection of the future.

So rest child.

Rest here, in this present moment, in this sweet stillness of your very Being.

Welcome home to the deep peace that you are.

Loosening the Grip

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What would it be like if you relinquished all control, or more truthfully spoken, relinquished all belief that you are in control or can possibly ever have or need control?

Is it possible to make plans and hold them so loose that there is freedom to be absolutely present and open to hear and respond to new information that is spontaneously shifting, changing routes, and/or showing what couldn’t be seen any sooner than this very moment?

How open to life moving through you, as you, are you, in each and every moment?

What would it feel like to hold everything with your palms up and fingers spread, open and curious as to what will stay afloat on the heart of your hands and what will naturally fall through the cracks of your finger tips?

Do we really know what Life is really doing in each moment anyway?

Let Life move through you, freely, without resistance, aught to’s, or mind-made-up projections of what should happen based on previous experience.

If we make plans and set our minds on those plans actually being what ‘should’ happen, what is the result inside of us when this doesn’t come to fruition?

Would we experience as much confusion, suffering or being ‘thrown for a loop’ with things changing and not going according to plan if we held things with our palms wide open, curious as to the outcome in a complete ‘not knowing’ space?

What a beautiful thing to explore, this not-knowing space.

Imagine the freedom to not know.

Imagine the freedom in not needing to know.

Imagine the freedom in knowing that we actually can’t know anything anyway, other than what is happening in this very moment.  And even then….

Making plans is not the problem.  Making plans and clinging to the plans is where challenges and suffering arises.

Loosen up.

Be liberated.

Let Life live through you, as you – effortlessly, freely….as it does ever so naturally.

 

Held By Life

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Sit for a moment.

Feel the ground beneath your feet, beneath your body.

Feel life holding, embracing, giving, offering, allowing, loving …the you that appears exactly as you are.

This spacious embrace – open, supportive, moving, steady.

Arising as you.

What’s here?

What’s this foundation, this platform, this arena in which all moves, all happens?

What’s this vast nothingness that is the all-ness called life?

Held by this, as this, you cannot be separate from the very “thing” that you are.

You can’t fall out of love.

You can’t fall out of this perfect, as is, aliveness.

You are held by life itself, as life.

You are this vast, spacious awareness –

Knowing all, and knowing nothing.

The freedom of this paradox – right here and now.

You are this – all of this.

Awareness as it appears in form and formlessness.

Held by life in all facets, all aspects, in all situations – in totality.

There is no escape.

How beautiful is this?

Let Life Speak

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Arms wide open.

Open to ALL of what life brings – the fear, the shame, the guilt, the sadness.

Open to life speaking, moving, dancing,

— however, whenever it shows forth.

Let Life speak what Life has already let in.

It’s already here.

It’s already happening.

Open to what life is. – as it is here, now.

Freedom lies in the blossoming openness to that which shows forth.

Do you let Life speak?

Or do you choose to turn away and shut out aspects that you deem not oaky, bad, unable to take, “should” be otherwise, incapable of experiencing…?

Turning from pain is suffering.

The end of suffering is allowing the coming and going of pain.

Can you let Life in?  Completely in?

Just let Life speak as it does.

Say yes.

Life can hold it all.

It already does.