And On It Goes

On the Road to Joshua Tree by Jane Tawel

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And On It Goes

By Jane Tawel

January 20, 2023

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And on it goes –

this life.

If you’re lucky.

And if you take

(and give and take),

well, then,

a little time

can go a long way.

*

There is nothing real,

nothing that exists,

that you do not create

for yourself,

but mostly that, and if,

you do create

for others.

All else is suffering.

*

Truth tells us truly,

that anything we make,

without love,

will never last longer,

than the span of our lives.

But all created  

with love is eternal.

*

Today, be love.

Today, be eternal.

Be what you were created to be—

an image of Creator-Love.

Real. Here. Now.

Love.

Life.

Forever.

And on and on it goes.

*

(c) Jane Tawel, 2023

A Meditation on The Man of the Hour

Homeless Jesus Statue and Homeless Person, Statue by Timothy Schmalz

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A Meditation on The Man of the Hour

By Jane Tawel

December 24, 2022

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Christ did not come to Earth,

for he has always come

to those who wait, and mourn, and hope,

in that which Love deigns True.

*

Christ will not come again someday,

for he is always coming now,

to those who wait, and suffer, and hope,

to those who seek and love,

in mysteries and all they can not see

but that which all do long for.

*

Christ was not born in Bethlehem,

except he is born in us.

Christ did not die on Calvary,

unless he dies today in me.

Christ did not rise to live again,

unless today he lives and loves and lives again

in life eternal starting Now!

in life eternal starting now in me.

*

Oh, do not worship temporal gods,

They have no hope for you.

And do not worship gods with names,

for you must find the name God has for you.

A name is written on a stone,

a white stone, pure and true,

and there you’ll find the name of Christ,

that God has given you.

*

Our hope is in The God of All,

The Great IAM, The One, Creator,

Parent of a man named Jesus,

who once did live to show The Way to God.

The Way of Christ is more than fairy dust,

and more than Santa Claus or even angels tell.

If you would follow Christ, the man,

then know his plan was to rebel,

against the tides of time and governments and yes,

even the surest shores of your religions –

all will turn to rust.

*

There is a truth in this dear season,

in which we gladly, foolishly give,

all of our treasures to the ones we love.

There is a way of hope and reason,

that’s imaged in the true myth of

a babe born once in history.

But Christ comes daily not to keep

our vision turned behind us or before.

He comes as someone that I see right now,

in persons struggling, lonely, fearful, lowly, poor.

*

Yes!  There he is! Appearing as Star Light today,

in newborn, old man, woman, friend, and even enemy.

Christ’s coming! Yes, I see him there —

in you, in her, in them—

Oh, let me see The Christ in even me!

*

Christ breaks through as The Morning Star

that heralds God’s real presence,

in even those with empty hands, like Christ was born in Bethlehem.

Christ did not come and never will he come again someday.

The Christ is not alive at all unless I walk The Way.

*

Oh, Parent-Love-Creator-God, help this small child of Yours,

to be the Light, and walk upright,

and live the love and hope and faith

of All it means to come as Christ in me—

yes, please Dear One,

be born in me, today.

*

© Jane Tawel, 2022

An Essay on: What Does Their Reality Have to Do with Me? And Why Do I Let Myself Think About It?

“mountain” by barnyz is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

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An Essay on: What Does Their Reality Have to Do with Me?

And Why Do I Let Myself Think About It?

By Jane Tawel

December 10, 2022

I often tell my students, before you try to write the answer, find the question. And the important questions are always, “How?” and “Why?”. I read a lot about what, in shorthand, I might call “spiritual and life-quality improvement” books. I read theology and metaphysics and spirituality manuals and Sacred texts and philosophy and psychology and good novels of course. There is nothing like a well-written novel to teach one something about human nature and about what one might call the eternal cosmic laws of nature and human nature. But if you read anything along the lines of these genres, you may agree that good books mostly raise important questions and the answers are fluid. Answers are like streams and rivers, always flowing and never the same at the same place twice. Questions are like a Mountain Range. They have always been there, and always will. Every day, we look out from our perspective and we may change every day, but the mountain still stands before us, immovable like God. And no human has ever climbed and conquered all the questions and none of us can conquer them for the next person. We get caught up in the temporal questions that have no ultimate meaning, like “What? How much? When? Who?” But these are not the questions that lead to Life’s great anwers. The Big Ideas and the true meaning of what I am doing on this little blue ball always come from “How and Why?”.

Today I was reading about changing my thinking. This is something I think more of us can relate to after living through a pandemic. We had a lot of time to think and it wasn’t always pretty and it wasn’t always fruitful. Perhaps you, like I, got into the habit of anesthetizing our thinking and perhaps you, like I, got into the habit of thinking about things that weren’t real. What I mean by “not real” is that one often gets hit with a thought about someone or something and its negative impact goes in like a sharp arrow. And as Thich Nhat Hanh so wisely points out, for some reason what most of us do is refuse to remove the stabbing thought-arrow and we just shoot second and third and fourth and one-thousand more arrows into the same wound, over and over and over again by thinking about it. As I wrote in a poem called, “Do Not Let Them In, They Are Not Here”, we allow the negative thoughts of others to take up residence in the rooms of our Mind-Homes much more easily than we do the positive, loving, good memories, lovely moments to find a home within our Mind-Homes. And so, the question is: Why? Why do we do that?

Maybe you are like I am, and like a long line of the people in my genetic pool and in my current family and friend circle are — we keep thinking about the negative or hurtful or confusing or unloving or mostly SCARY things that other people do in our lives and in the world, because we have convinced ourselves somewhere along the way that if we could just figure out WHY they did that, or said that, or think that — then we would somehow UNDERSTAND. And we convince ourselves if we could just understand then we would stop thinking about it. What we really mean of course is that if we could somehow just confirm and convince them that they are WRONG and we are RIGHT, THEN we would be happy, at peace, have a positive attitude, etc. etc. etc. Our thinking so often goes, “If I figure it out, I could change them, it, that, her, him.”

So here is the “How” question: Haven’t I learned that the only thing I can change is myself, my thinking, my heart and soul; so HOW do I change myself?

And the Why is obvious — Why change me? Because I want to be happy, fulfilled, unafraid, not angry, positive and healthy and hopeful and free.

I read this today: “You demonstrate the state of your mind at any given time. You experience in the outer what you really think in the inner.” Jesus, who knew his sacred texts well, believed this: “As a man thinketh so is he.” And he acted on that time and time again in his own mind and heart and life. What a great example of being a fulfilled human being, Jesus could be if we would let him. His ministry was to heal people basically by convincing them of the truth of that statement. “Because of your faith (mind-set, heart-set, soul-set) you are healed. If you have faith (inner health, harmony, and freedom) you could move a mountain.” Our inner self is our reality. So why (there is that ultimate question again) do we muck it up with junk and crap that isn’t here? I am going to use a strong word in this next bit that I never use but if you have followed me so far you know that this is exactly what some people do to us and what some situations feel like to us:

It is sadly and far too often the case, that I cannot prevent someone from shitting on me. But I can stop myself from wallowing around in their shit. I can hose it off and walk away. But far too often, when something bad happens to me or someone I love, or someone is mean or hurtful or evil (and if you don’t believe in evil, well….I don’t know what to say, but evil can enter even the most normal or religious of us. For good information on that read M. Scott Peck’s People of the Lie and well, The Bible is good too.) So …. Again, sorry for the strong word but “Shit on me once, shame on you. Shit on me twice, shame on me. Shit on me a thousand times? — Why am I still letting my own thoughts do that to me? Why?

I worked a very stressful job once at a “Christian” place. Most American Christian places I have worked on, well…. God have mercy. But at this one I was so stressed after a year I thought I was having heart issues. The doctor assured me I had a heart as strong as a teenager and it was just panic attacks. If you have ever had panic attacks, there is no “just” about it. Panic attacks are the body’s desperate attempt to show us that our worst enemy, however he or she may choose to appear as anger or hate or righteousness or — our biggest and most virulent enemy is — Fear.

I had a dream during those years. I was walking toward the auditorium with all the other employees and there was a big hole in the ground — a sort of chasm really. I fell into the hole and when I clawed my way up out of it, my beautiful suit and high heels and panty hose and all of me, head to toe, were covered in mud. I kept walking with the other people toward the doors of the auditorium and here is why I still remember that dream — the astounding thing was that no one noticed I was covered in mud. No one noticed.

We don’t do we? We don’t notice each other’s pain. We aren’t willing to look in the mirror and see the real reason we keep feeling our own pain. And God forbid we feel guilty about the pain we cause someone else. So, we pretend we aren’t all wallowing in the dirt and mud. Because if we did, we might reach out a hand or pass around a clean cloth or offer to baptize each other in the healing pool of forgiveness and love.

The real reason we obsess about the negative things people do to us or with us or sometimes, mea culpa, because of us (I too am guilty of grieving the Holy Spirit), is not because we want to understand them, or even because we want to be right and prove them wrong. In our hearts we all know that being right is a fleeting joy and like those bags of chips or cases of beer or Netflix streaming shows that we all over did it with during the pandemic, being right will anesthetize the pain for a while but we have to keep the anesthesia flowing and eventually its efficacy wears off. We all know those people (often ourselves) who have become so needy to always be right that they will insist they are right even if they are quite obviously wrong. It would be funny if it weren’t rather sad. But isn’t that really what we are doing when we keep convincing ourselves we just want to “understand” or we just want to keep thinking about something because we want to make sure we are “right” about the situation? Why are we so afraid to admit that even being right does not bring us peace? Why do we not want to live with inner peace and love more than we want to “figure out” the answers? Wouldn’t I rather live with joy and peace and love of self and others more than I would to live with an endless, pointless, hopeless search for the wrong answers to the wrong questions? Because even if I know them, the answers for someone else’s reality will never make me feel at home with the questions about my own reality.

Today, I think I found my Question of the Day that may help me write my life-story’s next chapter –

Question to self: Even if you do in fact “see them” for what they really are, what does their “reality” have to do with your reality right here and right now?

And if my answer is, “Nothing”, then I need to rinse myself off, pick myself up, stop wallowing in the shit that isn’t here anymore, pull the arrows out and throw them as far as I can throw them, walk away from the things that I use to mask the pain and fear, and free myself from the prison with no bars to keep me in it. I need to find why I am still alive and breathing and seeing and hearing and talking and loving — -

HERE.

NOW.

JUST BEING.

ME.

“Yesterday is gone and will never return. This is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalm 118)

“Get away from me, ‘Satan’.” (Jesus)

“Flee from evil and do good, and dwell forever. For the Lord loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his Saints: they shall be preserved forevermore: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous men shall inherit the land, and dwell therein forever.” (Psalm 37)

“Oh, it’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood. So, let’s make the most of this beautiful day. Since we’re together, we might as well say: Would you be mine? Could you be mine? Won’t you be my neighbor?” (Fred “Mr.” Rogers)

Today, I will focus on the thoughts that I choose to be my neighbors. I will live with good neighbor-thoughts and I will only open my heart to the loving thoughts and ideas of goodness that I want to live within me.

Today, I cannot prevent a thought from arriving at the door of my mind, whether a fear for the world in which we live, a hurt from the past, or a desire for something that is not ultimately good for me or for those I love. I can, however, after opening the door to that negative thought, say, “Sorry, you may not come in. Sorry, your appearance is useful only in reminding me of what is important. Sorry, you hurt me once — see the scars? But you cannot come in and reside with me now; you may not hurt me now — you are not here with me in my reality. Even if you are here outside with me, I will not let you in here, inside the temple of myself.

Today, I will love myself enough to start anew — clean, free from fear, full of faith that the Universe is a Good place to live in today and that it is my job to protect myself from evil and harm and then to, in love, protect all others from what I can — outside in the world, and from within my own heart and mind.

Today, I shall feel all there is to feel and not anesthetize myself from that which can teach me to be a better human and to live with the great cosmic natural laws of God. And when any of those feelings are scary or hurtful or cause me anger or fear or greed or confusion, I will ask:

Why?

And I will know I can live within the question because someday, I will be what I have always been meant to be, and I shall see The True Reality, Face to face.

And all will be well with me today and forever, in the Kingdom on Earth as it is meant to be in a The Perfect Cosmos of God and Humanity. Amen.

*

© Jane Tawel, 2022

The Question Tells Our Stories

“Open Book Policy” by Alex E. Proimos is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.

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The Question Tells Our Stories

By Jane Tawel

December 2, 2022

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The young are ensnared,

by the Questioners,

who with all good intentions intact,

nonetheless, trap them

and grade them,

and release them into the world

thinking that the questions are:

What?

Who?

When?

And many never learn that these questions

have no ultimate worth

and will never satisfy.

For that which we all long for is — 

a story worth telling

a story worth listening to,

a story worth living.

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And all of us,

may be ground down

by those who lead

the inquisitions of

banal things,

like education, and politics, and religion.

We who educate the young

still believe we can teach them answers.

Have none of us learned yet,

that all that matters

are what questions we learn to ask,

and live with?

How few of us learn,

that all of life’s prompts,

are asking each of us,

all of us,

to answer only — 

“How?”

and “Why?”

And few of us learn or know

that when we ask

the real questions,

that even the questions are unclear,

But that living with the right questions

will lead us,

and we will lie down in green pastures,

near still waters,

in peace

with the questions.

*

Oh, yes, many of us still seek

what we think to be written

in black and white.

And we foolishly walk in halls

constructed by Whats and Whos

and made crooked with straight lines

and covered in moldy, dead pictures

of dead saints and deader patriots.

And we live lives afraid of our own stories.

And we must hate and fear something,

so, we hate and fear the stories of others.

And we keep chasing whats and whos.

As if they were real.

As if they could last.

*

Listen to the elders speak.

“Oh, Our People –

when human stories are no longer told,

and we no longer look at each other

awed by the mystery,

then the heroes have failed

and the protagonist has died,

and the antagonists of the Story,

and the enemies of meaning and longing,

have won.

But they too, silly fools,

will have no victory in death.

*

Oh, we must remain awake!

We must keep turning the pages;

pages written only for us

in this place, and this time.

We must keep searching for the themes,

one by one,

eyes open

past our bedtimes

times that would turn out our lights,

and leave the Story unfinished.

Oh, I am learning to live

in the mystery

that all Good Stories must have,

waiting to gasp at the surprise ending.

For we know not

of what we are made of now,

but one day, we shall be revealed to be,

not what we are,

not who we are,

not what we have been;

but Why we have been,

and Why we have lived,

and Why we will always be.

*

Oh, My People,

when we stop telling each other our stories,

and listening to each other’s stories — 

Well, that is when the Story of humanity

and of our beautiful earth,

will end –

*

Oh, My People,

Tell your stories.

Tell them to whomever will listen.

Tell your story

in your bedroom,

in your office,

in check-out lines

and empty pews,

and protest marches

and wherever you are

and with whomever you are with.

And when you tell your true story,

and listen to another’s true story,

Why, then –

whatever you do

that you think is important

will be revealed

to be a lovely, peaceful little nothing at all,

compared to the True Story of You.

*

Oh, My People,

Learn your story.

You are not a what

Or a who

Or a when — 

You have come through your story, thus far,

by learning to ask “How”.

And if you haven’t already,

You must now be brave enough

to ask yourself, “Why?”.

And then write

just the next moment of your story,

that is all your story needs,

the next word,

the next line,

the next action

that answers your “Why”.

And then you may write

one moment more,

and that too,

will be the answer.

And by asking the write questions,

You are asking the right questions.

And you are turning the page,

on another day to become closer

to the Story’s Awesome Ending! — 

and the answer to Why.

“Here am I, Oh Why. Send me.”

*

You are an arc, a radius, a point,

in the Awesome Circle

we sit in together,

telling the Story of Why.

Take part today in the Circle of Life.

*

And in the questions,

that your story,

and his story,

and her story,

and their story

ask with words whispered,

with proclamations shouted,

with songs sung;

the questions,

written large and small

with nubby pencils,

and leaking ink pens,

and sticks on cave walls,

and bindings both new and old — 

in the questions pulsing

like living hearts outside a body,

in the stories of yourself and others,

and all of humankind — 

you will find the Living Mystery,

that some call “God”,

and some call “Meaning”,

and some call “The Answer” — 

but all of humankind calls — 

“ The Why”.

*

Oh, My People,

There are only two stories to be told.

One is loss.

And the other is –

Love.

Loss is the story of How.

Loss will guide the protagonist’s steps,

if allowed to be the catalyst to change.

But the only story worth

keeping on the top shelf of your thinking,

and the locked vault of Memory’s library,

and passed from hand to hand

in the circles of our gatherings;

and kept safely, next to the bed

to be read again,

and with parts memorized

for telling when the nightmares come,

or our sleepy children snuggle close,

or an old worn out body breathes its last;

the only story to be cherished

and told and retold and told again,

the story that is no respecter of persons,

but available for free,

always for all of us;

the only story worth living for,

worth dying for,

worth trusting in;

the Story with the real Ending,

that will never, never come,

but that will go on into eternity,

Why, that Story –

the story that answers “Why”,

is the Story of Love.

Oh, My People,

the only story that when told and retold,

never grows stale or boring,

the only story that is worth sharing,

again,

and again,

and again

is the Story of Love.

*

And Love will always,

Always — 

Always — 

Be — 

Forever…

The Story that answers

the only question worth asking:

Why?

© Jane Tawel, 2022

*

*

I lived among the books and things,

and rode the merry-go-round.

And as I reached for the golden ring — 

Why — suddenly I found

that Life is not a carousel

that I did have to ride,

so, I slid off, so I could tell,

of what I’d found, before I died.

Oh, Children, do not hop aboard,

this world’s illusive wheel.

Instead, trust what you feel,

to be the Path your soul reveals.

For it’s within your very own,

dear self that you will find

a true and loving peaceful home,

for heart, and soul, and mind.

You must be brave.

You must be modest.

You’ll find The Path,

most strange and oddest.

But you will find around each bend,

our joy in journeying never ends.

*

© Jane Tawel, 2022

Forgivin’ is Livin’

by Jane Tawel

“Fake Bird, Real Sky” by Daveography.ca is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

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Forgivin’ is Livin’

By Jane Tawel

November 19, 2022

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Forgive my assumptions

that lead me to doubt

that You have guided and gifted me.

*

Forgive my forgetting

the times that pure Grace

was all that protected and lifted me.

*

Forgive my instructions

that force You to choose

whether Your will or my will is done.

*

Forgive me the most

for the things that I boast of

while neglecting it all came through grace.

And help me, today,

to walk in a New Way,

that one day, We may stand face to Face.

*

Forgive that I choose

to be lazy or greedy

and to live in a life based on fear.

*

May I do what is hardest,

and forgive me, Myself;

to stop looking outside me,

for there’s nothing to right me,

but the Love that’s inside me,

and has always been here.

*

Forgiving is freeing

You, you, and you.

Forgiving is seeing

that all that is True,

is Faith, Hope, and Love—

all the rest will be past,

and all that will last,

is whatever I’ve given

to bring to earth, Heaven.

Oh! “for-givin’” is livin’

in Eternity now.

*

“Go, now, your sins are forgiven. Which is harder to say? Your body is healed or your soul is healed? You have forgiven yourself in the same measure that you have forgiven others. Forgive yourself as We forgive you. Forgive, and Live.” (Paraphrased from The Wise One)

© Jane Tawel, 2022

Dialogue, Example A: Between I and One: Listen

“Sunrise” by AdeRussell is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

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Dialogue, Example A: Between I and One

Listen

By Jane Tawel

October 30, 2022

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I: I’m trying harder to catch what You are saying.

One: You aren’t really trying hard enough. You keep letting the flotsam and jetsam of this world, of your emotions and of your limiting of Time, clog the flow of the Stream. You say you want to hear Me but you are afraid, and so you put up blocks, and fill your ears with anesthetizing ear buds, and put blinders around the eyes of your Soul. You allow all of your scars and fears to interrupt the airwaves of Our communication to the deepest, truest you. And so, your mind is consumed with chatter and not communication. You let your mind keep talking. Just listen. Just try, for even just a moment, to listen.

*

I: No one loves me. Not even him. Not even her. Not all those whom I have done this and that and the other for. No one.

One: All love is fractured and fragmented, and comes to you in broken pieces, just as your love has been felt as incomplete shards in their hearts. Only We put all the pieces together, but you can not see the Whole now. What you must do is stop considering love piecemeal — “here today, gone tomorrow”… “he loves me for this but not for that”….. “she doesn’t really love me”… and so forth and so on. Love will never feel whole until you see that Love is not a reality from one individual or group or accomplishment, but all Love is from Us and Ours, through others, through you, through time and space and hands and feet and hugs and smiles. And while Love is seemingly imprisoned by the powerful frailty of words and actions, true Love is always free and freeing and if you let yourself love and be loved, Our Eternal Love will give you the freedom to see the reality of Our Universal Love in every little broken heart and mismanaged and awkward event and in every piecemeal, incomplete, unsatisfying and yet, truly noble action of love that humans try to share with other humans in their quest and desire to love and be loved. You will know you are loved. In him. In her. Yes, even in them. And then you will know how to love even that most difficult of all beings to love — yourself.

*

I: How can I feel and believe You love me, when I am not even sure that You exist? Are you real? Or are You All something each person creates out of the need of psyche and the crutches and clutches of culture?

One: You have done well to study and search, little child. You have done well to open your mind and heart to follow after Truth, wherever it may appear. You are braver than you once were. You have overcome much and fought a good fight against your weaker selves. But at the very center of your being is still the greatest foe of all — Fear. Please, remember you are and always will be just a little child in the ways of Truth and Reality. Because you are so small, We can not be all to you that Parents are to Each Other. You have much still to learn, that is true, but some times you need to put away your books and groups and meetings and even your very thoughts, and you will be assured that We Are and We Have Always Been and We Will Always Be… And there is nothing that can separate you from Us…… if you will simply…..

Listen.

© Jane Tawel, 2022

Do Not Let Them In, They Are Not Here

Untitled by Anonymous

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Do Not Let Them In, They Are Not Here

By Jane Tawel

September 16, 2022

*

She is not here now.

And when you let her in,

again and again,

you reveal your true insanity.

Not being part of

any true reality,

her presence has driven you mad.

*

He is not in this space.

But you have flung open

the entrances to your mind,

and now you have to face the fact,

that though you have allowed

the thief of your peaceful thoughts

almost constant habitation there,

he is dead,

(or would be if you killed him).

Allow him to die an honorable death.

Kill him gently

without leaving too much blood

on the floors in your house,

and then clean up the mess.

Remember he only came because you bid him come

and then blamed him for leaving grey scum

on the walls of your mind’s home.

He does not live here today,

and need not live in the home of your heart

any more.

*

They come disguised as cleaning crews,

or helpful guests and family,

pretending to help

with the cleaning-up of calamities

or of my misunderstandings,

but my need for them, not withstanding,

it is a relationship of lies.

For thoughts are just a house of cards,

if peopled by things one cannot see with eyes,

or hear alive in the world that exists outside the mind,

or touch with skin to skin,

feeling the softness of your cheek or the cheek of a ripe peach,

or made with something I can taste or drink

or move with the circles of my speech.

All that would dwell in the shadows

of my darkened house, filled with the

blood-suckers that would steal awakening joy,

these are nothing more

than dust motes of past emotions,

or the fogs that roll in from the future but don’t stay — 

Oh, all of this is nothing of me

in just this place — this day.

Yes, I have invited all of you not really here,

under false pretenses.

But trying to make you feel at ease as my mind’s guests,

serving your phantasmagorical hungers

from the hard labors

of the meals of my perceptions and attachments,

I feel like an alien in my own home.

The people I let in,

who do not really live here in my space,

are dirty and rude

because I allow them

to mess up that within

the home of my heart

and that which should be hallowed

in the hallways of my mind,

and still I find

it is hard to say good-bye to them.

And all that is meant to be preserved for my good,

is filled with the flood,

and mud of thinking on and on and on

about things that are not present now.

*

Do not let them in; they are not here.

Kick them all to the curb;

and prohibit them from

the treasure-room of yourself.

Those who used to live here,

or have not yet been born to you,

must take their place

with the other hallucinations

that your mind would create.

We all hear voices.

And yet, we do not stop our ears,

against those who would crash us on the shores,

of wasted energy and emotions

of all and anything that is not love.

Why, oh why, do we feel guilt,

when we release those

who do not live with us today,

those which we would cling to from yesterday,

or yearn or fear for in our tomorrows,

tomorrows which should remain unimagined?

We must stop our remembering

and our imagining,

as we dream of and with only those present,

in the here and now,

dreaming them in the reality of today.

*

Let all of them,

all but your best present-presence,

and that which is only alive in you for just this day,

leave your home,

and live where they belong,

in the house of the dead.

Let those who are not here,

take-up their residence where they belong,

and reside no more in your now

where only you

can see God and live.

Yes, there is enough space for only you,

your very present God, and you,

your home, which is yourself.

Be still

and only know this moment

and only in this moment, know

the Truth.

And let all others go.

Set them free.

So that your true self

is not housed,

but truly sheltered.

And Love will then

find plenty of room,

to fill the empty spaces,

that ghosts and chimeras have left behind.

In your home,

may all your past and future

no longer look to you

for tents of understanding build on bogs.

And in the only place you ever need,

the place in you that you call home,

the home that is yourself,

may you live forever-now

in peace.

© Jane Tawel, 2022

How Do I?

by Jane Tawel

“Ocean Wave” by smhowell2 is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

How Do I?

By Jane Tawel

September 9, 2022

*

How do I stop blaming myself?

Renaming myself in a thousand ways?

How can I listen

to the tides of my dreams?

And though they may seem

just a whisper — a nudge — 

how do I let my soul

roll with the waves that

The Ocean would send my way?

*

I have one name,

One name.

And I will play only the good kind of games,

like a child I will play in the now.

And I will neither blame nor shame — 

and though I may not know exactly how,

I will not project nor expect nor attain

any thing that will harm you or me.

No, not any of you,

nor any of me

will I stop from the Flow of The Ocean.

I will see only who we can be — 

You and me — 

as I seek to become

and to be and be

One.

© Jane Tawel 2022

Set Us Free

A Poem by Jane Tawel

“Monarchs in motion” by farflungphotos is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

*

Set Us Free

By Jane Tawel

September 3, 2022

*

Set me free from the future.

Set me free from the past.

Set me free to live into

The Truth that will last.

*

Set me free from stagnation.

Set me free from my needs.

Set me free to change wholly,

and to set new dreams free.

*

Set me free by forgiveness

of the great and the small,

and as I forgive others,

may I forgive myself, all.

*

Set me free from the prison

that only I can create,

by attachment to anger

and fear, grief, and hate.

*

Let me open the prison doors

and free memories’ hostages.

Give me strength to release,

tomorrow from bondages.

And when I would put

heart or mind back in jail,

May The Spirit of Love for All Life,

fast prevail.

*

Freedom is not a longing

for nothing to lose,

Nor is being free, gain

for the ego to use.

Freedom is never greedy,

nor self-serving, nor fearful.

Freedom is never needy,

but in needlessness, cheerful.

*

Freedom is the soul’s seeking

of Love’s peace that will still

any hurt, fear, or longing

and by Grace, all is healed.

*

Oh Creator, of heaven and earth and of All,

May my spirit be freed from the sins of The Fall.

Let me claim my true power that by You, I’m designed,

to be free to create in me, new life divine.

*

May I free those who’ve hurt me

and forgive once — and all.

May resentment and bitter seed,

take no root in my soul.

*

Daily let me forgive

those I know and in general.

And as I forgive freely,

make my joy and love plentiful.

*

Oh, True Life is just waiting!

Our souls long to be free!

When I loose bonds of judgement,

I free God in you and in me.

*

May I use my soul’s freedom

for true care to employ.

And God, moment by moment

set my soul free for joy.

*

May my soul find true freedom

in The God who is One.

May our souls be united,

in only Truth, which is Love.

*

May I trust in The Word

that brings Heaven to Now.

And though I don’t know how,

let my faith become strong,

that I live now, in God’s freedom,

and for all my days long.

*

Let my daily prayer be:

Set me free.

Set him free.

Set her free.

Set them free.

Set us free,

Dear Creator,

Oh, Dear God,

set us free.

© Jane Tawel, 2022

Thoughts for my Blogger Pals: Keep the Faith. Keep Helping.

I posted this famous quote by Fred (Mr.) Rogers today, and then a friend texted me back those questions and concerns that go raging through many of our heads and hearts in this day and age. I thought my own thoughts might be of use to some of my blogging friends who are some of the “unseen, unsung” helpers in my own life. Thank you to all of you who keep trying to help others in these times. I hope you can each believe that you make a difference in the world — after all, isn’t that really why we write?

Dear ________________, 

I am beginning slowly and painfully to discover a few things: 

1. Although I continue to believe as D.L.Moody said that one should have a Bible in one hand and a (valid) newspaper in the other, there is much more opportunity today to endlessly be sucked into “news” and what is ultimately the “junk food” of our times, than to be sucked into spiritually enlightening “food”. There is always bad “news” but I don’t have to believe that it is more powerful or ultimately more true-Truth, than something beyond anyone or any nation or any time and place, whatever people may call the “Other Reality” and what I think of as true Truth and God’s redeeming love for our planet and His children. It helps to say to myself what a friend said wisely to me yesterday, “If it is something that is out of your hands, don’t let it take up too much space in your head.” Hard for me but helpful. This friend is always one of my own “helpers” not just for me but quietly in the world. At the same time, I want to believe that if I do a small unsung kindness here and someone else in the world is doing an unknown kindness over there, then all the little truly unselfish kind things that all the little people do as “helpers” will always tip the scales in the world towards Martin Luther King’s “arc of justice” and towards the mustard seed of faith and the mighty waves created by the power of truly loving hearts. And — 

 2. Sometimes my being the sort of person who is always trying to help others is more about me than it is about them. There is a difference between being ready and alert to help a need that appears than what we often do which is to look for ways to “fix” people or ways to disguise what the human hubris always is in part, a way to assuage our own ego needs. One struggles with comparing one’s “intelligence” or “compassion” with what one assumes is another’s lack of these things, and so the big beam grows in one’s eye. And conversely, I often neglect loving myself enough to be a helper to myself (Psychology 101 is still a distant achievement for me — LOL) 

Anyway, a couple great books to recommend that were recommended to me by some of my “helpers” in the world doing good for others in quiet, unsung ways, “The Wild Edge of Grief” by Francis Weller (helps with grieving for what is happening in the world and on our planet as well as personal griefs). And the other is the Powers trilogy by Walter Wink, which helps put what is really happening in the world in a Judeo-Christian but rather radical context which is both empowering and mind-blowing. 

Love you. Thank you for your kind sweet words. I hope to get to your neck of the woods this fall and actually see you, dear friend.

And so Blogger-Pals, carry your weight today because the only way out is through, but also look up, see the sun or lovely clouds that bring rain or the stars that are out in your own “neck of the woods” and know that our grief makes us human and compassionate and better able to be “helpers” in the world; but our love for ourselves and others and the place in which we live, and the planet which I sure do hope we can help survive — all the love in the world, whether they are tiny drops of water like mine, or big rolling waves like Mr. Rogers’, or Martin Luther Kings’, or Jesus’, or Buddha’s, or… ______________(insert the name that comes to your mind in the blank) — all the helpers are here. May you seek and find them today and then go out and do likewise, 

Jane