Sunday, July 14, 2013

It's All In The Seeking

I recently quoted one of my all-time favorite authors Melody Beattie in her book 52 Weeks of Conscious Contact ... Meditations for Connecting with God, Self & Others I am currently on Week 45 for my 3rd go-around. Each week has a value and the value for this week is Perserverence, but for some unknown reason, I was guided to go back to Week 1. There, she talks about life as a Quest, Treasure Hunt, Process, Pilgrimage ... She quotes Ken Blanchard, "The only thing that will keep you going is a huge amount of faith and trust in the journey." 

This brought to mind something I wrote years ago. (I have no idea why these flashbacks are happening more and more often but maybe it's a signal that it's finally time to reveal more pieces of my Self???) 
The piece is part of a collection I call CELEBRATIONS OF WONDER and is entitled "IT'S ALL IN THE SEEKING". It began with a quote from Unity's Daily Word from Nov. 5, 1996.

                   “As I seek to know more of You, my soul is nurtured...” 

We’re so caught up in our culture in results ... achievement ... goals ... the finish line ... "getting there" ... 

And yet, if one were to be absolutely, totally, completely honest ... achieving a long sought-after goal ... "getting there" ... finally grabbing that gold ring 

seems to hold momentary pleasure at best. More often than not, there is actually an experience of emptiness .... a let down feeling ... a sense of "is that all there is" ... 

"How could that be? And why would it possibly be that way?" you might ask. Because the true satisfaction, joy and WONDER must come in the process ... the journey ... the seeking.

In my personal quest to find God ... I am continually fraught with frustration because I feel like I don’t seem to ever "get there” ... although I am ever seeking. (And where is There, anyway?) Then I think "well, maybe that’s just the way life is." And maybe if we ever really did "get there" there would no longer be any purpose in continuing on.

But then, what about all these people who recount "near death" experiences? They are on their way out and yet come back to all this. Somewhat confusing to me but it guess it goes back to the seeking thing.

And if I am absolutely honest, I have certainly had my own "there" moments ... as I assume most people have. And thank god, I've been able to recognize them for what they were ...

To me those "there" moments are the celebrations of wonder ...
circumstances and situations that lift us out of our limited, petty selves and connect us with the magnitude and magnificence of the unity of all.

But greedy (and human) that I am ... I want more than occasional moments ... I say I want them all of the time ... but then maybe it would become an "O.D." thing ... like too much rich food ... it would just become too much and we would totally lose perspective.

I guess the bottom line is an awareness that it truly is "all in the seeking" ... coupled with an acute awareness of the magnificence of those wondrous moments that can so easily be missed if we are too caught up in the gold rings.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Synchronicity At Play

In the old television show the A-Team, Hannibal Smith’s famous phrase was “I love it when a plan comes together.” (The film of the A-Team just happened to be on TV last night.) #1

My variation on that idea is, “I love it when synchronicities are clearly apparent.”

Case in point:

Two days ago, I watched a 1985 special by acclaimed documentary film maker Ken Burns about the Statue of Liberty. I don’t think I had ever seen it before and it was really fascinating. It began with the first inklings of the idea, then through the planning stages, construction phases, packaging, shipping, and the final assembly. Did you know that she was almost lost at sea? The ship carrying her was hit by a violent storm and she almost never made it?

There were a number of interviews with immigrants and their families. It was very moving to hear the reaction of these people when they saw Lady Liberty for the first time.

Mario Cuomo, Governor of New York (1983 – 1994,) talked about his mother’s arrival. His father had preceded the family and had gotten a job digging ditches in New Jersey. The mother and children came with nothing. When asked about her hopes for her new life in America, she stated, “I don’t want much. All I want is for one of my sons to become Governor of New York.” #2

I can’t remember the context but he made the statement, “The further we get away from our essence, the more trouble we get in.” I knew I had to write that down. And as I did a phrase popped into my head, “Revere and honor your essence for it alone can set you free.”

I knew it was a line from one of the poems I had written in the early 1980s. I ran to my studio, searched the shelves and found it without much trouble. To me, that was a clear example of synchronicity … Cuomo talks about our Essence and I remember a poem I had written referring to our Essence. #3

But it doesn’t stop there. Yesterday, I wrote a blog post that not only referred to our Essence, but also referred to my poetry written so long ago. So, within less than a 12 hour period, I write about our Essence and refer to my poetry … then someone on TV (filmed in 1985!) refers to our Essence, and I remember a particular poem in which I spoke about our Essence! #4

And lest we not forget the A-Team and Mrs. Cuomo ... In any event, here's the referred to poem. Previously, unnamed I just entitled it ...

SWEET STRANGER                                        

Trickling and tinkling 
like the facets of a crystal 
you emit emotions as varied
as the colors of the rainbow 

Intense and impassioned with life
your energy soars to its source
sprinkling love, faith and honesty
behind like fairy-dust

Oh, sweet stranger
how truly beautiful is the soul of man

how loving                                                         
how innocent and pure
underneath the terror
of fear and pain so easily encountered

Revere and honor your Essence
for it alone can set you free

I’m not really sure that I have any particular point here … other than the fact that when I become aware of things like these … I take note … and am often compelled to write about it. I am then reminded that Divine Order is always at play … even when it’s not so obvious!

©Susan Schanerman 2013

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Bring Who You Are to the World

Can you remember a time, before life got to you, that you innocently accepted who you are? Maybe you could recapture some of that feeling. Bring who you are to the world.” - - Melody Beattie, 52 Weeks of Conscious Contact, p.210

As I read those words the other day, the thought popped into my head that my artwork, which is so child-like and innocent and pure, is clearly one of the ways I recapture my innocence and bring it to the world. (I’m not as clear about the self-acceptance part.)

It’s taken me a long, long time to feel OK-enough to be able to reveal my work but I finally have … and that feels really good. And what feels even better is receiving acknowledgement and recognition for what has emerged from the deepest part of me … my heART ... mySELF …

I remember saying something similar years ago with regard to my collection of poetry ... something about it “… emerging from the deepest part of me … my SELF …" 

And when I finally realized "that my SELF is really no different than any other SELF … except that I just happened to be expressing it at this time and place in this particular manner," I was able to share it.

Funny, how I wrote those words 25+ years ago and yet those same feelings apply now.

We all came into this world innocent and pure … And then as the years passed, we each in our own unique way, began to forget that Essence and grow into something/someone totally different … essentially forgetting the Truth of who we are.

The way I see it, all forms of Creative Expression can be the means of recapturing our original Essence … of Innocence … of Purity … and Love. (Don’t you think it’s interesting that the word ART is considered the archaic present 2nd singular form of the verb To Be.)

"You look in a mirror to see a reflection of your face look at art to see a reflection of your soul."- - George Bernard Shaw

Friday, July 5, 2013

The Times They Are A-Changing - - Or Not?

Originally written in May 2008.

I have to admit something here and say that from as early as I can remember, BUSINESS was an entity completely removed from anything, that in any way, was the slightest bit personal. My father was (and still is) very, very old school with the belief system of “The world is a jungle,” “Business is a ‘dog-eat-dog’ situation,” “They’re all animals out there.” Get the picture?

So, when I ended up getting both my Bachelors and Masters degrees in psychology, from the family perspective, it quickly became obvious that my knowledge and understanding had no place in the World of Business.

Fast forward - - Even today, I have to admit that I'm still a little surprised every time I see a Business-related article that has to do with what I would have considered the personal side of things.

The thing that seems particularly crazy to me now, is that Business certainly is, and always has been, made up of people, and anything that has to do with people has to have its personal side. How could/can it be looked at in any other way?

I just read an article that was describing the shift that is taking place in the Business World, away from the “Hard Skills” to the “Soft Skill”side of things. 

I read another article in AOL Coaches espousing “The Power of Nice.” And the thing that prompted me to write on this particular theme was an article that I just read in Corporate Logo, The Voice of the Promotional Products Industry entitled “The Powers of Belief and Expectation.”

I guess the bottom-line for me is that I’m happy to see things moving in the direction they are. More awareness ... More openness ... Better balance. And I can see huge opportunity for me to fit in with what I know.

Somehow it makes me think of a statement made by Henry Ford, “Businessmen go down with their businesses because they like the old way so well they cannot bring themselves to change.”