Praise Not Punishment

There is a secret that only the wisest shamans know
It is that praise is what keeps beauty alive
But this praise is not superficial or of the self
It is true, heart pouring out praise of what is truly valued
Praise says ‘You are in the world and you mean something
You are beautiful and I see that beauty and honor it,’

This simple but openly joyous action
Is like pouring water on a parched garden
It brings everything to life
And allows it to shine

It can be praise of a human being
Or a flower or dog or a tree
Or nature itself
Everything will respond in the same way
Because everything is animated by the divine

My poetry is a celebration of this praise
It is the only way I know
To keep the beauty of things alive.

Image by Bruno /Germany from Pixabay

Within and Without

I stood under the eternal sky
And gazed upwards into infinity
There was no end to anything
It was all the divine

I sat with my own self
Turned my attention within
And saw the same infinity
And the same divine essence

Soon I understood
That within and without
Were exactly the same
And the only thing
That separated them
Was my mind’s insistence
On separation

That was the end
Of my mind’s dominance.

Image by WikiImages from Pixabay

Search the World

Go ahead, search the world
You will find wonders and riches
Breathtaking vistas and majestic sights
You can climb all the mountains
Surf the highest waves
You can fly, dive and explore
Until you have seen everything
You can become a space traveler
And get to Mars
And that would be a wondrous thing
And bring you closer to the divine

But if there is an itch inside you
A longing for true freedom
You will never find it
In any of those things

For only the journey into inner space
To the center of the inner world
To the black hole of existence itself
That lies at the heart of each human being
Only that journey will bring you
The wisdom and peace you seek.

Image by Lumina Obscura from Pixabay

LOOK INTO YOUR OWN HEART

To find the truth
You must look deep into your own heart
Into your soul and into your deepermost being

The spiritual wayfarer who tries to find truth
By accumulating knowledge
Will, quickly or slowly, find themselves at a dead end
With nowhere left to go but in

That is a beautiful moment
For then the journey really begins
As the knots and the protective layers
That cover up vulnerability
Are met, embraced and dived into
A profound deepening happens
And a great tenderness arises

By and by this opening and tenderness
Reveals itself as the truth
Not as a mental construct
But as a flower that opens
When its time comes

As a lived reality.

Image by Bessi from Pixabay

Love is Trying to Find You

Love is always trying to find you
But you resist and resist
Saying you are not ready
But you ARE ready
You have never been more ready

Love is beckoning you to its door
And into its kingdom
But you say ‘I need to resolve this
And I can’t let go of this,’
And you hesitate at the threshold
Imagining there is more you should do or know

Love, your true home,
Doesn’t care about what you think
Or what you imagine
It comes at you, beseeching, begging, demanding

Give yourself once and for all to this inner calling
What do you have to lose?
Only the remnants of clothes you once wore
With pride and pomp
Only the threads of your worldly robes
That no longer fit or even suit you

Love is trying to find you
Surrender once and for all
It will be such a relief.

Image by JamesDeMers from Pixabay

Song of Grace

Do you think the sound of the birdsong
That greets the morning
And the sound of your tears or laughter
Or even your cry of pain or anguish
Are different to the ear of God?

There is no difference
Except in your mind
That always seeks to censor you
Or censor the world

The birdsong, the sound of the wind in the trees
The howl of the wolf
And the cry of love or sorrow
Are all the song of grace

Open your heart so wide
Everything falls in
And you will also hear
With the ear of God.

Image by 272447 from Pixabay

The Dance of Awakening

You can only really dance
When you let go of everything
And live entirely in the moment
Then the movement and energy
That was there anyway
Touches you at the core
And vibrates its way through you
And you call it dancing

It was there always
But you weren’t
Until you let go
Of self consciousness
Distracting thoughts
And past and future imagination

It’s the same with realization
So just think of it as a dance
And don’t be so heavy about it
If you need a reminder every now and then
Get up, turn the music up
And freak out.

– Image by ArtTower from Pixabay