Not My First Rodeo
Tomorrow’s a big day, so gotta make this short. It’s been a strange day, filled with roller coaster emotions and realizations. Growth can be like that. There was one moment when I thought I had had enough of the way things had been, but was sick of changing all the time, reacting to this and that, always adjusting around the ways of the world. Weird thought, for me at least. Then I...
Sometimes Dreams Aren't Subtle
Last night I dreamed of the Dalai Lama, for the first time in my life. Though I’ve studied Buddhism for the past 16 years, he hasn’t made a single appearance in my subconscious, even though some part of me might have found that comforting. In the dream, my husband and I were in my car. I was driving, and we were with a lot of other cars, inching into a crowded stadium parking lot. We...
Add this to the million reasons to be grateful: I am safe. I am healthy and alive. I am happy, most of the time. I learn. I love to learn, and I get to do this on an ongoing basis. I can read, which is rare in this whole wide world of ours, and I am comparatively rich. I have had the gift of music and theater, my parents and grandparents taking me into New York City to see orchestras play...
You know those old images of televangelists, who hold their hands in the air and say HEAL! really loudly, sometimes knocking someone in the head until they fly backward, or stumble into the aisle? I haven’t been to enough tent revival meetings to know how true this is (or isn’t), but that’s pretty much how I felt today. No, life didn’t hand me one of those grudgingly...
When It Began
You know how some songs pop into your mind at the strangest times? When all the memories of being in your body at the age you first heard it come rushing back until you’re here and there at the same time, kind of inside and outside yourself all at once? I love it when that happens. Today it was “When It Began,” by the Replacements. I can nearly remember every detail about the...
Learning to Exhale
“Learn how to exhale, the inhale will take care of itself.” — Carla Melucci Ardito
Time to Leap
I’ve been thinking about risk lately, partially because of my own risk-taking activities like being a healer, writing a book and putting it out there, hell, even being kind is a kind of risk-taking in a world that’s sometimes cruel. Though the Sun has recently left Aries, a fiery risk-taking sign, to enter Taurus, that can be a somewhat deceptive. Taurus has its own adventurous side,...
I took a break today, and even though a chorus of voices from my past rose up to tell me that I would fall behind, or not get things done, or fail to attend to the personal and professional things that, I don’t know, I suppose really matter somewhere in the back of my head. As my husband drove out toward the beach I realized that I haven’t had one full day off in more than a year. ...
You’ve never seen so many impatient people until you’ve either seen a Dalai Lama talk in person, or stood in a virtual “line” with others waiting to see a talk streamed live over the Internet. In person, you’re put through more security checks than at any given airport (sad but true that many would like to see the man dead), and if you’re waiting virtually, same...
I Know How He Feels
“I consider thay I have many responsibilities but none greater than this: to last … and get my work done. I want to be an honest man and a good writer.” — James Baldwin (Notes of a Native Son)
When you’re approaching a deadline of any kind, time seems to contract somehow, becoming telescoped and ever emphasized. I have a client who’s waiting for her first child to be born, and she tells me that every day seems like it’s twice as long, so fierce is her desire to see her baby’s face for the first time, and hold the little one in her arms. I have another client...
”How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” — Anne Frank
You Get What You Need
I’ve been thinking about direction today, and how what we set out to get often differs from what we get. I don’t say that in a pessimistic way, assuming that somehow our needs or goals will never be accomplished. I don’t say it out of bitterness or even a defeatist attitude. Not at all. There is wisdom inside that statement — You Get What You Need — and all we need to...
Doing radio and print ads over the past few weeks, I’ve been asked again and again how you know you’re psychic, how you know you’re good enough to practice professionally, and how you know that what you’re seeing and experiencing has any practical use in someone’s life. The thing is, knowing and sensing are two separate things. But where they intersect is the place...
And Away We Go
When you’re approaching a big deadline in life, you can go two ways, I’ve found. One is to ball up into the fetal position and rock bak and forth in bed, wondering why you ever had the idea to write that book, or stage that play, or record that song. The other is to try your best to surf the energy of the moment, bypassing any crazy things like sleep or, in many moments, food and...
Most of the time, it gets on my nerves when people say “lighten up.” What they really mean, if they’re being honest, is “your stuff is cramping my style, making me think , harshing my mellow — stop it.” So for a long time, I stayed away from that phrase. Why would I want a lightened up life, I reasoned, when I could have one that was intense, full-on, and full...
The Finish Line
You know you’ve been running for a long time, doing whatever you’re doing, if you’ve forgotten about the finish line. In my case, I’ve been writing so long, reading people, trying to gain additional knowledge of healing every day that I practice, and preparing for a book launch on April 24th. In the time period between there and here, I’ve also been asked to write...
Too Many Freaks
I remember when I used to live in England, and goth was big. Everyone used to dye their hair black, paint their skin white and try to look as dead as possible. Personally, I don’t like going with the tide too much, so I dyed my hair whitish blond and shaved it on one side. I can’t say it was my best hair choice ever, but I can say that when you’re the only blond in a club, people...
A Beautiful Break
Sometimes, projects take on a life of their own. They refuse to fit into little windows of opportunity, or stick to any kind of writing schedule you might want to place on them. These projects refuse to be orderly, or allow you to boss them around in any real sense of the word. In short, they’ve had it with your shit, and aren’t interested in what you want out of things. ...
Oh, Wise Man
“We have two lives … the life we learn with and the life we live after that. Suffering is what brings us towards happiness.” —Bernard Malamud, The Natural
On Suffering and Renewal
Easter’s never really meant much to be as a holiday. As a kid, you’re focused on the bunny, the eggs and the chocolate. Unless you’re a jelly bean fan, and which case I don’t understand you. Though I was raised Catholic, it was hard to get into the suffering of Jesus, the betrayal at the hands of his friends and disciples, and the sheer agony of looking up him hanging on...
More Words to Live By
“Words are sacred. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones, in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.” — Tom Stoppard Oh, hell yeah.
It's Not Easy, Or Maybe It Is
Whoever invented the phrase, “Anything worth doing isn’t easy” may have had something. To me, it sounds like something a drill sergeant would say, or someone in charge of those godless bootcamp fitness classes. Sure, we all need to work for what we want. We all need to be clear with ourselves what it’s going to take. But why does it have to be hard? Why can’t at...
A Curious Thing
There’s a curious thing that happens whenever you put out a book. A kind of compression of time and space, until you’re living inside yourself, of course (I suppose it’s hard to get out of that responsibility) and living outside yourself as well, seeing what your work does to other people. You begin to see yourself through other people’s eyes. The book that’s coming...
Today, as Mercury went direct after a little more than three weeks retrograde, people were kind of bonkers. Am I right? On any normal day of planetary flippage, there’s what’s called a wobble, when the planet’s not quite direct and not quite retrograde, either. What you have on your hands is equivalent of being held prisoner in line at the DMV. People tend to get antsy, a little...
I Want More
Many days, when I’m dealing with clients, there’s a palpable energy on the call, or in the room. The person wants something, but I’ve long since learned that it’s not healthy for me to ask them what it is. Every person has his or her own process, so I wait until they’re ready to spit it out. Then, usually it comes out something like this: “I …...
Made to Be Broken
Some people say rules were meant to be broken. That the ones among us who cling to the middle, eschewing the edges, have the right idea. For many of us, this may be true. If we’re not “normal,” we feel that we have to move toward that perceived middle ground. If we don’t toe the line, we’ll lose out on jobs, mates, opportunity, friends and social invites. The funny...
If I hear one more person tell me how their one true spiritual way can help me, or describe how lost they think I am, meanwhile standing on my doorstep and keeping me from, say, doing constructive things in my life, I may have to scream. And I’ve got some lungs on me. What is it about spirituality that makes each of us feel that only we understand? That only we have the answer, or have...