The Paradox of Uncertainty

The Present   Much has been said about being in the present. It’s the place to be, according to the gurus, like the latest club on the downtown scene, but no one, it seems, is able to give you directions.   It doesn’t seem desirable or even possible to wake up every morning and begin leaping from one second into the next until you fall exhausted back into bed.   Plus, there’d be no past with so many scenes to savor and regret, and no future, the place you will die but not before flying around with a jet-pack.   … Continue reading

After The Final No

After the final no there comes a yes And on that yes the future world depends.                          – Wallace Stevens I led my first book, Hidden Victims Hidden Healers with this verse from Wallace Stevens.  I chose it to remind myself, and the reader, that there is a yes there, somewhere. You know as well as me, life is full of various versions of “NO:” rejections, pit falls, mistakes, losses, disappointments, misses, and more rejections. With the above book it took three years to find a publisher and I could have wallpapered my … Continue reading

The Wish-Fulfilling Mandala (Or how not to mistake a rope for a snake)

The wish-fulfilling mandala is a simple tool that allows you to manifest your intention. You will experience immediate results through the use of this mandala. It’s a simple practice to transform negative mind-sets and experiences to allow for direct spiritual and creative experience. It facilitates the transformation of pain stories, difficulties, and resistances into a way of living that is inspired by intention. It’s a wish-fulfilling tool. Begin with the center circle. In this circle identify a strong assumption or pain story you hold that you know influences your inner and outer landscape. Identify something that you are struggling with. This could be about how you view yourself … Continue reading

Here, Take This Gift

Everything gets down to choice. We live a storied life. Be in the moment. Forgive. Trust is fundamental to forward movement. Living an intentional life brings happiness and fulfillment. Rely on spiritual principles. Remember life is precious and short; therefore, consider what is truly meaningful. Everything points to your belonging. Offer your gifts to the world without need for recognition. We transform the outer world from within ourselves. Live life from your side. (Take responsibility for your life). Know what you are in agreement with. Spend time in nature. Learn to let go. These are fundamental principles that most of … Continue reading

A Liberating Discovery

“I live life from my side.” This is the zero point agreement. This means we take responsibility for our life and experiences. This of course is the theme of my book with the same title. When we succeed at living life from our side, we flourish at life. One practice (not found in the book) that accelerates the satisfaction quotient in our life is to explore a dynamic. (Exploring a dynamic is a practice we do in the Zero Point Circles I hold in Madison and Prairie du Sac.) This “attitude of exploration,” along with consciousness around a particular dynamic … Continue reading

Here: What’s Truly Possible

Is what you want possible? In any given situation what is truly possible? I use to say that my therapist saved my life. Now I understand, he helped me to see life through the lens of possibility. Possibility is a powerful energy. When we experience something as possible, or see the possibilities inherent in a situation, doors open. And they open wide. It can be a bit of a chicken and egg thing – we explore something, experience some positive results and then witness what is possible for us. But to even explore something we have to know, if even … Continue reading

Feel Haunted by Your Past? Here’s How to Free Yourself

Our life is a storied life. Basically, we are either living “reruns” of old stories or creating and living the story of now. I can only answer the question “What am I to do?” if I can answer the question “Of what story or stories do I find myself a part?”  –Alasdair Macintyre, Scotish philosopher   We are haunted by our past until we consciously choose to give up an old story of ourself and live in the story of now. Eckhart Tolle refers to this as the “power of now,” I understand it as the STORY OF NOW. The power of now is about … Continue reading

Precious Life: Precious Teacher

Lately when people ask, “How are you?” instead of responding with “good,” I say, “fortunate.” I thought about this. Just “good”, when either I am doing well or not, doesn’t truly represent my present state. I am though, fortunate. Fortunate to live where I do, to be in loving relationships, to have the health I have, to have access to such vast inner and outer resources. I am fortunate to have encountered such a teacher as the Venerable Geshe Sopa at Deer Park. In my recent book, I offer 11 core principles of the zero point agreement, one which is … Continue reading

Can This Marriage Be Saved? (Or, Can You Teach An Old Dog New Tricks?)

I spent a good part* of two days rewriting the start of my novel. (A novel I have already given a decade to). I took out all the backstory and started where the “story begins.” Still, it needed more work. Lots. I was telling instead of showing. (That “show don’t tell” principle of the craft). I was in the protagonists head way too much. And, the novel needed re-structuring. All these are part of the craft of writing. I was not born knowing these crafts. I have read dozens of books on how to write. Novels worth reading are obviously … Continue reading

Zen Soup For The Writer

“The art of life, of a poet’s life, is, not having anything to do, to do something.”  –Henry David Thoreau Writing gives us something to do. “In every block of marble I see a statue as plane as though it stood before me, shaped and perfect in attitude and action. I have only to hew away the rough walls that imprison the lovely apparition to reveal it to other eyes as mine see it.”  –Michelangelo Writing reveals the story that is already there. “If you see in any given situation only what everybody else can see, you can be said … Continue reading