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Posts Tagged ‘lucid living’

Responsibility – how does that word sit with you? Does it cause you to feel expanded or contracted? I’ve decided that responsibility is an O word. What does that mean? What is the O? For some, it is a ring of fire. For others it is a wormhole to higher consciousness. What the heck am I talking about?

Think of O as a looking glass, a lens. Heck, think of it as a hula hoop if that serves.  Depending on how you view it and the way you relate to it, responsibility is (and here come the O-words) obligation, onerous, one-way, one-right-way, or it can be, for you, opportunity, options, optimization.

I’ve written about responsibility before and how we can re-resonate the word for ourselves by seeing it as our ability to respond. That works for a while. Then, something, someone comes along and we are triggered by the word, falling back again into the resonance of obligation. We feel imprisoned, victimized. We get blamed and we blame. We look forward to some illusive day of liberation equating it with “no more responsibility” and get that all mixed up with freedom.

What is the pivotal point? How can we infuse this word, responsibility, with light, love and power and beauty? (I realize that there are other cultures that will not get what the problem is at all and that’s wonderful. If you don’t have a problem with the word, carry on. You have better things to do with your time than read this.)

Emerald Lake Copyright (C) Oct 2011 Kathy J Loh All Rights Reserved

Emerald Lake, Cananda

 

In order to take responsibility for my life, my feelings and my actions, I have to recognize that I am my own authority. I am the author of my life. I create my reality. I am the cause of my effect. OK, so stuff happens, but I am at choice regarding my reaction to and action around my circumstances.

As I pondered being my own authority, I flashed back on the many ways I’ve handed my authority over to others: parents, teachers, leaders, lovers, books. Yes, books. For the longest time, if it was in print, it must be so. Go figure…

I was an eager student in search of straight A’s, in search of perfection, in search of safety, belonging, security and knowing I was loved. If I could just get the formula right, just solve the problem of me, not life, me, then I could live “happily ever after.” That’s how it works, right? Happily Ever After!

It was only last year that I truly let myself and all of my multidimensional being off the hook for straight As. I’d inadvertently eaten a gluten meal and ruined my perfect record. Like so many are fond of saying, “I’m harder on myself than anyone else is on me.” I had every opportunity to be that way with myself again, but chose differently and experienced a profound shift. Take note those of you who resonate with being hard on yourself – it’s not something to boast about, this preemptive criticizing of one’s self. It’s downright self-destructive.

Where was I? Oh yes, responsibility and authority. You know when you get a kind of aha! that’s gentle and yet profound; the kind that feels like a ping on the temple that shakes something loose in the brain? That’s what I got this past weekend at a Lucid Living workshop on the Beauty of Belonging. There is no one right answer, no one right way to live. There are a multitude of possibilities from which to choose and I am the chooser. As the one who chooses, I am my own authority. What?!! No one right choice, just the one I choose out of a sea of possibility? How the heck do we get into heaven if we haven’t found that one key for that one gate?

It all fell away in an instance. My search for the key died right then and there. But here’s the important part. It didn’t fall away because I got that there’s not one right way. It fell away because I am meeting my own needs and I am not looking to have them met out there.

I’ve spent my life being my own rebellious authority from the obligation and opposition side of the O lens of responsibility. I’ve defined who I am to myself in resistance to, comparison with and belonging among.

I’m a freedom junkie as are many of you. We hunger for freedom and I hear it in my clients all the time. I’ve written about freedom from and freedom to in other articles and posts and I have given it as an inquiry to clients,  and now, for me,  it is landing at a deeper level.

As long as I was defining myself in resistance to, I was looking to be free from. As long as I was looking to become free from, I was wearing responsibility like a noose. I was looking to be free of obligations while living in a world (that I fabricated) of obligation. Sounds suspect doesn’t it?

We can never be free as long as we are trying to be free from, because the resonance of that is one of blame, defensiveness, denial and resistance.  As we all know, what we resist, persists.  Besides, what is a rebel without a cause?

On the opportunity and options side of the responsibility lens, the resonance of freedom is not to be free from, but free to. I am free to choose, free to create, free to say yes and free to say no, free to love what I love. I am free to, because I am responsible.

What happens when we stand at that cross-roads of the choice to accept or shun responsibility can be daunting. If I am no longer in resistance to or trying to get myself free from, then I am no longer defined by my resistance. If I am no longer who I have known myself to be then who am I and what do I want, REALLY? Sit with that question for yourself a moment. How free are you to even look for the answer to that question? How much of your answer is shaped by the fact that you’ve stuffed it for so long it’s downright painful to even begin the excavation process? If you know the answer and you are not creating that for yourself, what is the responsibility you are unwilling to take?

When we know what it is we really want; when we hear our soul’s calling and take full responsibility for our lives, our reality shifts. That shift will create some manner of chaos big or small, because chaos is a necessary precursor to change. For me, this time, it will be small, because I’ve been through the big ones and I’ve done it the painful way: in resistance, getting myself out from under.

This time, I know it will be gentler and kinder, because I am gentler and kinder to myself and I have done the work internally coming to know that I belong in this world exactly as I am, in fact, more so as I am. I’ve met the enemies of the judge, trickster, debt collector and dark lover within. I’ve been mean and critical to myself. I’ve played all kinds of mind games. I’ve made myself pay for anything I could have possibly done that was wrong and I’ve tarried far too long in suffering and struggling.

I’ve learned the hard way (which is something my mom once told me is the way I seem to do it). Well, mom, Happy Mother’s Day – I’m not doing it the hard way anymore. And guess what? I’ve totally forgiven myself for all of that and include all I’ve been and done in the wholeness of my journey.

It’s a huge leap of faith, this courage of my convictions, this full on authoring of my own life without ghostwriters, this resonance of responsibility as opportunity and free to. It’s not my familiar home.  And yet, as I say that, I suspect, for the soul and the heart, it is the more familiar and truer home.

So, choose your O-words for responsibility. You already do and now, I invite you to do so consciously and lovingly.

Note 1: A huge hug of gratitude to Lucid Living (Leza Danly and Jeanine Mancusi and all my Lucid Living tribe) for guiding and loving me through the maze.

Note 2: Today would have been the 30th anniversary of my marriage which died, officially,  over 6 years ago. It seems more than appropriate that today, on this date, I would be writing about authoring my own life. Healing takes time. Healing is becoming whole. It’s worth the journey, every step of the way.

Note 3: this is my 99th blog post. Next one, #100, will be a celebration in more ways than one!

Copyright© May 2012, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved.
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“Love and magic have a great deal in common. They enrich the soul, delight the heart. And they both take practice” ~ Nora Roberts

Magic is believing in yourself, if you can do that, you can make anything happen.” ~ Wolfgang Von Goethe

“Once you awaken, you still use the word “I”, but it will come from a much deeper place.” ~ Eckhart Tolle

The word magic comes from Magus or Magician. In Tarot, the Magus is the energy of all possibility, The Fool, brought into focus as a singular idea. The root of the word “mag” means “to do or make” and is also the root of imagine. In sacred geometry, 1 (the Magus) emerges from the center of unity (0 or fool).* It is the beginning of creation.

So, I make up, it is when the Cosmos first knows itself as separate from itself, in a way, through each of us as individuals. We are each the result of a singular focus out of all possibility. Following that, I make up that we are all both magic and magicians. We are all magicians on the frontiers of unfolding consciousness.  And yes, it might be said, we are all fools as well.

Last week, a client came to her call wanting to invoke more magic in her life. She is aware of the way I work with messages from the Mystery, which I relate to as the more real, and wants to experience more of that in her life; more winks and cosmic whispers, more enchantment. I left the call reflecting upon my own path to trusting the whispers and messages.

It’s an interesting path to journey. Most of us are delighted by synchronicity and momentarily pushed into our right brain by déjà vu. Somewhere along the line it becomes all to “woo woo” for most. We create for ourselves a false sense of security in what we can say is real.

“Mystics understand the roots of the Tao but not its branches; scientists understand its branches but not its roots. Science does not need mysticism and mysticism does not need science; but man needs both.” ~ Fritjof Capra

What is real, what is illusion? What is true, what is false? What senses are we using to ascertain the difference?

copyright (c) March 2012 Kathy J Loh All Rights Reserved

We have senses that we think we can rely upon – taste, smell, sight, sound, touch. To see it is to believe it. But any good magician with their sleight of hand will have us believe we’ve seen a woman cut in half in a box with her legs still kicking and face still smiling. Can we rely upon our sight then?

We have senses that we think we can’t rely upon; most of which fall into what we call intuition, right brain, gut instinct, sixth sense. In a Lucid Living course on Trusting the Unseen: The Magic of Resonance Causation, we refer to them as unfamiliar senses (whereas the others mentioned above are our familiar senses). These have been, for most of us, shut down early on.

My own path of magic has been one of solitude, particularly in meditation and in nature. It has led me to trust my unfamiliar senses and to discover that the world around me is speaking to me, co-creating with me, dreaming (with) me all the time. All I have to do is notice and be willing to dwell in the inquiry of being both the dreamer and the dreamed.

Some might say I am deceiving myself. I might be. You see, I figure I have an option of deceiving myself in an infinite number ways and so I choose to focus on a path of Enchantment and Beauty.  I choose to resonate in the key of Love. I’m no model of perfection. I am a fool and a magician walking the path.

Others choose to deceive themselves by thinking that they can find a way to control “reality” and that war might be one of the answers. They see themselves as separate from all others, as victims, and live in a state of us-against-them scarcity. They rely upon the tools of blame, shame, manipulation, pity. I’m familiar with these. I’ve used them plenty myself, but to little end other than a whole lot of suffering.

What’s real? If we think it is something finite, then we forget that we are conscious creators. We hand off the responsibility for consciously co-creating our evolution. If we are each a unique expression of one unified Source, then we are the scouts on the frontier reporting back on the experience.

We are in dreamtime, but if we are not consciously and responsibly so, then we are not free.

This is why I think it’s important to become as present to the now moment as possible, because there is no future that does not come out of now. Our choice in this moment is the cause of the effect we experience in our future. When that future arrives whether it is the next hour, next day, next year, it arrives as now. To be free is to move with the current. But it is not to be the victim of the current.

“We may be floating on Tao, but there is nothing wrong with steering. If Tao is like a river, it is certainly good to know where the rocks are.”  Deng Ming-Dao

That is why I talk about “dancing into the Mystery” – it is a way of expressing what I see in my imagination as the experience of living in the present moment, so awake as to be open to every pivotal moment and make conscious choices; claiming full responsibility (ability to respond) and authority (being the author of my life). In other words, I cannot blame the rock for my inability (or my unwillingness) to see it. I do claim responsibility and authority for living in the question, not becoming overly attached to the answers with which I play and recognizing when I have.

I’ve deceived myself in so many ways and every day, more is revealed to me.

Again, what is real?

Is the glass half empty? Is the glass half full? Is the glass an illusion?

What is the way in which you have chosen to deceive yourself?

Whatever your method of deception, it is having an impact on us all.

What magic will you create?

Please enjoy this TED talk by Marco Tempest. I watched it this morning and it inspired me to write this post. It’s entertaining and may fill in some blanks where I’ve made assumptions.

Notes:

*For more on Tarot, I highly recommend Tarot of the Spirit by Pamela Eakins

** For more on magic and resonance, I highly recommend courses with Leza Danly and Jeanine Mancusi at Lucid Living. 

Copyright © March 2012, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved

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This is a post specifically written for  Karen Caterson’s blog (which is always a great read BTW) round robin: Support Stories – Strength from Within. Thanks for inviting me to participate Karen! (Click on the link to see more stories, poems and posts on the topic by other bloggers)


When a tree is a sapling, it may be given some additional and external support. It may need stakes, ties and even deer guard to give it a chance to become the giant it was born to be. Over time, if all goes well, the tree outgrows the stakes. The branches reach high enough to evade foraging deer. Its root system grows deep and wide, bringing it nourishment from the ground. A strong trunk supports the wide canopy that drinks in sunlight. A tree wants to live. That’s an assumption I make. It will do all it can to survive in the densest of shade and the driest of soil. It wants to live.

There was a point in my life, not long ago, (ok, about 6 years ago) when I came to a cross-roads. I wasn’t sure I could go on much longer feeling so much emotional pain. I entertained the notion of suicide without really contemplating it. I was aware that I could let the big wind that entered my life completely uproot me or I could let a branch or two snap off, bend with the winds that blew, send a taproot deeper into a still place and make my stand.   In one inspired moment, I chose the latter.  Despite the pain, the complete uncertainty about my future (especially financially), I wanted to live. I wanted to create something new, find out what I was made of, maybe, eventually, find new love. I had a faint glimmer of hope that I’d make it to a better day.

That’s the thing about hope. It’s like a homeopathic remedy. It only takes the essence of hope, the faintest hint of hope to keep us going.

As I applied the essence of hope daily, I began to develop a relationship with myself, with nature and the Divine. I came to appreciate the gift of Mystery and the way in which we can navigate the unknown with Love. I filled the empty hole of feeling unappreciated and broken with a deep regard for the sacredness of all of life, mine included.

It meant giving up any notion of being rescued. It meant giving up suffering like a martyr.

Victims wait to be rescued.

Martyrs go through all kinds of tap dancing to suffer in silence (with a few deep sighs) and then get angry when no one notices all they have sacrificed for others.

Victims and martyrs are waiting for something outside themselves to support them. They’ve let the stakes, ties and deer fencing become their (illusory) prisons.  I know. I’m an “ex-con.”

Here’s the thing; once we commit to something, all of reality (and that which is unseen) conspires to support us.

If we are playing footsies with victim and martyr, we will be supported there too. We will create relationships with unwritten co-dependent contracts acting out roles of heroes and villains.

We make choices and those choices create our reality. What reality have you created?

What reality will you create now?

Some trees in The Forest of Nisene Marks State Parkgrow at right angles. They were tossed sideways in the Loma Prieta earthquake of 1989 and then continued their upward growth toward the sun.

I don’t know anyone who hasn’t been tossed sideways by some kind of earthquake in their lives. We can live sideways and consider it over or reach for the warmth and light. It’s a choice.

I’m not saying it’s easy.  I’m not saying it’s hard.

I am saying, stop waiting for someone to come to the rescue. Chances are if you are not loving and nurturing  yourself, you won’t have an open enough heart to receive the help when it’s offered anyway.

You are your own hero (and your own villain). It’s an inside job.

Squirrel resting in tree Copyright (C) November 2010, Kathy J Loh

A sturdy tree makes a nice resting place (c) K J Loh

When it feels like all the world’s  got you in a spin and circumstances are chaotic, when you feel lonely and like you don’t belong, what to do? Be still. Breathe. Find your center. Send that taproot even deeper, let your canopy dance in the passing breeze. There’s a lot of space between you and all that is happening. Observe. Rest. Be with your genuine emotions raw and real as they are and pan the story. At least tell a new one.

I’ve created a strong sense of inner support by way of connecting with nature, the Divine, my own heart. Here are some of my practices with some selected resources. They are practices because there is no arrival, simply the daily devotion.

Wow, that’s a lot of external resources for developing inner strength. Like I said before, it’s an inside job and it is the commitment to the inner work that brings the support of a friendly world to your doorstep.

Enjoy dear ones!

If you have something you’d like to add to the list, feel free to leave a comment with your practices for creating strength from within.

Ready to receive some help with that inside job? Email me at kathyloh@coachkathy.com and we can set up a conversation about how I might be able to be of service to you.

If you are ready for radical transformation of your inner world (which will have a delightful impact on your external world) then you are ready for a Sacred Life Walkabout with me. Let’s talk!

Copyright © November 2010, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved

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I had a fabulous weekend! I spent three days coming face to face with how I create my reality by way of what I truly desire along with what beliefs I hold and choices I’ve made that might work in opposition to those desires. I’d been through this Lucid Living course before and what was noticeably different for me was the embodiment and confidence I have that this new choice this new reality I am creating is sustainable. I am claiming responsibility for my life. I am my own authority.

Then I ran headlong into Monday morning “back at the ranch.” I sifted through pages of email (most of it not worth reading), multiple requests for schedule changes, requests for my expertise and time for free, back-logged social media strings with which to catch up. I got really agitated.

I know enough to honor where I am at and be with what I am feeling before trying to move on or shift into higher resonance. So, I sat with my agitation and very quickly I got an image of the beach. There is this thing that happens in knee deep water when the receding waters leaving the beach run into the incoming waters rushing toward shore. They bump up against each other and create a huge splash.

That’s what is happening with me. The outgoing reality is bumping up against the incoming reality. It takes time for things to shift. I’m caught in the bump and splash and it irritates me. Except, now that I see what it is, I’m moving from agitated to excited. I call it evidence that I am on my intended track.

I took my agitation into the woods for a walk, hoping to entrain with rhythm of the trees which seem relatively calm in the light drizzle of the morning. While on the trail, I got some external information that mirrored my internal state. First, I saw a vulture soaring over my house. The vulture eats carrion, that which is already dead. It is about purification and releasing. I am purifying my beliefs and choices so as to claim more responsibility and powerful new beliefs and choices. I am releasing old baggage. Let the vultures come and finish it off.

Then, I saw a centipede. It’s the first one I’ve seen in my more than three years of walking this particular trail. I laughed and said to Harley, the lab that accompanied me, “Wow, look how fast it goes. I guess I’d go fast too if I had 100 legs.” Centipedes are good luck. They are also about coordinated effort, the kind that is unconsciously competent. Many small steps will make me agile and help me move quickly.

I mused upon the fact that the vulture soars high and the centipede is about as close to the ground as you can get and both thrive off of decaying matter. All that is decaying is good compost, fertilizer for new growth.  I did some good inner work this weekend. Now my outer world is reminding me to follow through with my intentions. I am reminded: purify, release, coordinate my efforts.

All of it informs me that I am in the perfect place; the place of tension between; where things seem out of alignment for awhile as shift happens. My willingness to be uncomfortable, to surrender to agitation, is part of the purification and nurturance process. It will keep me from washing ashore too soon without proper completion and it keeps me from slipping back into default mode in an effort to preserve an illusion of comfort.

Today I am the vulture and the centipede. I am soaring and grounded at one and the same time. No wonder I feel agitated. Or, did feel agitated, because in recognizing these things, I am filled with gratitude and I find myself happy and hopeful again.

With one hundred feet on the ground my resonance is soaring!

What feedback is your current reality offering you?

How are you in-formed today?

 copyright (c) Kathy Loh, May 2009, all rights reserved

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photo by Kathy Loh

Unfurl! (Kathy Loh)

Yesterday, I wrote about the nurturing voice within. I’m the first to admit, it’s not always an easy voice to find. I used to be much more familiar with “who do you think you are” “what do you think you are doing” and “you are so selfish.”

My journey of developing my internal nurturing voice began in a Lucid Living weekend seminar six years ago. In Lucid Living terminology, this voice is called the Nurturing Parent. I remember a particular exercise in which I was exploring my adolescent voice and, I might add, doing quite well with it. Once I gave her voice, she was rockin’ and rollin’ and using plenty of colorful language. (Oh yeah! She had plenty to say and if you are good, I may share it with you some day.)

In the exercise, I was being coached to address my adolescent from the perspective of my Nurturing Parent. I stumbled, mumbled and then stalled. I was stunned. I said, “I can’t find that voice. I don’t know what it sounds like.”

I’m not going to make up that I never heard it. My parents are good and loving people, so I’m sure I did. I just didn’t register it. It’s not what I internalized. Luckily the leaders and assistants in the course were well-equipped to model the Nurturing Parent voice for me. They helped me remember.

Six years later, I am partial to that Nurturing Parent voice. It is the one I most listen to now. I mean, let’s face it…it’s not a difficult choice.  Six years later, I am re-taking the entire Lucid Living series of seminars. I’m not the only one. The course is so powerful that half our class is doing what they call a “victory lap,” attending the series for the second or even third time around.  Deep work always bears revisiting.

I can’t recommend it enough, particularly for those of you who are ready to heal the wounded aspects of yourselves. If being a victim or martyr just doesn’t cut it for you anymore (and if it does…good luck with that!); if you want to become a powerful creator in your life, empower yourself and your relationships, then this work is for you. It is deeply and powerfully grounded in love – L O V E.

Bad news is: the series is booked for this year.

Good news is: you have time to save your hard-earned pennies to invest in yourself for the next opening.

Really good news is: you can still enroll in a 4-part tele-class series called

The Path of Wisdom

It starts April 14th  (that’s coming up!). It will give you an in-depth overview of the entire series.

For more information and to enroll click here: The Path of Wisdom (scroll down to the Teleclass section)

Skeptics Disclaimer: I’m not getting paid a dime to plug this. I really believe in it.

Love yourself and your whole world will become love. (you can quote me)

copyright (c) April 2009, Kathy Loh, all rights reserved

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