First kiss

First kiss

I cannot tell how many hundreds of miles of trackways I have trailed since I seriously began country hiking on my own in about 1978.

Certain photos, such as this spot near Chettle, in north Dorset, remind me of when I was hungry and tired, and my dizzy exhilaration resembles nothing so much as a lover’s trance.

I force myself to pause and compose a shot, to give reverence to this moment. I feel this green place flows with green blood and my urge is to honour the eternal green moment echoing among fertile valleys of timeless green silence.

My body becomes as a planted pin on this map, as deeply rooted, as noiselessly noisy, as long established, as identifiably hairy and branchy as all of the surrounding flora within eyes reach.

Then I move on and I walk out into new places.

There is a complete, all-in-the-round island universe in that image.

In all these mysterious images, I am compelled by the rumble of love that was conceived in my breast to stand breathless and then I press the button. I allow the camera to let in the light. Some elements of the fifth dimension – the green magic – remain in the freeze-frame scenes.

The beauty of it is, that these magics are still here, are as clear to me now, and as familiar, as my first lover’s kiss

Bliss, my red Heart!

The germ of the idea of the magic bathing to be found outside in the Big Green came to me in 1978.

Bliss-in-the-Green

I had just begun going into the Surrey Hills for planned solo rambles, rucksack, map, water bottle, camera and all.

After about half an hour, I’d stop grumbling about the effort, and I noticed a falling away of mind chatter.

Then my senses of sight and sound received a perfectly bionic boost.

Walking on in this state, the blindingly ordinary reveals itself stark naked, and the silences of the Big Green all a-growing explain to me at unambiguous extreme high volume not that they have nothing whatsoever to tell me that I didn’t know, but that before I let my red-red heart off its leash to roam free, I didn’t remember I had forgot what I had always known forever. 

Bliss, my red Heart!

Bliss-in-the-Green!

~ Love is present E v e r yN o w 

* A Guidance for Self Renewal *

* A Guidance for Self Renewal *

I ask you to listen and take part in the pictures and scenes I place in front of you. For some, this is a way to leave the distractions of thought to one side, and enter a state of reverence and intimacy with yourself in which you can access a welcoming tranquility and be open to self-renewal.
… … …
Breathe in and let the breath out. What you are doing in a real down-to-earth way is beginning renewed life.
Our own independent life begins with a breath. You connect to air with your breath. You begin to live every time you take a breath.
Air is everywhere present. At all times air is in touch with your body. Air circulates in your blood stream, and it is available to every cell of you, all your life long, from birth to death.
Breath, like thought, has an existence as a flow. There are unanswerable mysteries connected to the act of breathing.
We are exotic life forms. We are five-pointed star-creatures who walk on a planet blanketed by an air layer.
Remind yourself that you share this same life-sustaining, planet-wide, breathable shell of air with every other breather on this Earth.
Breathe and hear your breath as it enters and leaves you. Feel your connection to the wider mystery of the breath of life.
Whether your breath escapes you in silence, in sobs of pain, out of joy, or is totally unregarded, automatic, you and your breathing is a universal link to your own life force and to the living energies of all fellow sentient beings.
Consider trees and people. Trees breathe in and out as people do.
There’s no point in criticising them for how they are. In their lifetime, trees are influenced to grow into all their shapes by the earth, their ecology, and weather.
It’s what trees do.
Trees do not make judgements about us, the people who pass by in the presence of their sober livingness.
It is right to remind ourselves that each and every person we meet has become who they are through the circumstances of their lives.
If we can see ourselves and others in the wholehearted simple way that trees accept us the way we are, then great burdens of judgement, resentment, even fear will fall from our hearts and dissolve away!
It is largely the operation of our chattering ego which raises each one of us into first person fame or notoriety. We may think we are in control of our decisions most of the time. It is the mind that tries to assume operation of this control.
So much anxiety and frustration is the result of a heart thwarted in the pure expression of its singing voice by the clamour of mind. The mind makes up scripts and stories to fit its primitive worldview.
It’s what the mind does.
And yet, how easy it can be to see through the mind-fog and become aware of the song of the heart!
It is this harmony which is ever-present at our still centre. It is the same natural wisdom heard in the melodies which the heart plays which guides other sentient beings most of the time.
Why not for us as well?
When the swirl of the mind smokescreen is stilled and settles out, our original self, our guilt-free innocent self emerges. And it is not our individuality which shines out, but the constant light of our heart’s peace. This is the source of undying love from which we originate and to which we return.
Whatever the different shapes, both visible and invisible, that the living of our lives have carved into us, we all share one humanity. We share qualities, frailties, susceptibilities. And we share mighty strengths and talents, limitless gifts.
When people say we have more things in common than separate us, they mean, “we are all members one of another”. The flock and the swarm better describes the human condition than any singling out of one or other of our essential human attributes.
Remember our common biological origins from the birth of life on Earth and remember our origins in common.
Starchildren made from stardust we may be, but for everyday tasks it is enough simply give a moment’s thanks and share the knowledge of our companionship and our interdependence on other air-breathing sentient beings, animal and vegetable.
The pain and confusion that sometimes hangs around you might not be real. The tyranny that it exerts might not be real.
Even the terror of the unfillable void which the absence of pain or confusion occasionally leaves behind might not be real.
Ask yourself if it seems possible, even practical, to wish pain away, to shoo it off?
… … …
I suggest now, here, you take a little time out to come back. Outside is influenced by the outside. Come back on an inward journey.
Sit at a table, listen to and be conscious of your own natural breathing.
Place one of your hands palm up, relaxed and at rest on the surface in front of you.
There is no expectation. There is no need to notice the things you were thinking and doing just now.
Where you are starting is where you will end. Be at rest.
You are breathing.
All’s well.
Let the time go by.
Let the time go.
Let go of time.
Let go.
Say it to yourself. Say this gently:
It is as it should be.
What I am and what I have is sufficient.
Look at one hand.
You have no need to enter into a relationship with your hand.
You and your hand go back a long way!
Familiarity, friendship, healing, connection are all here.
Neither you nor your hand have any secrets one from the other.
But your hand has an untold story to tell you.
Your palm is open, facing you. The fingers are resting, open. Together you have memories.
Keep your gaze on your palm at rest.
Let go of time.
Say it to yourself. Say this gently:
It is as it should be.
What I am and what I have is sufficient.
Where I am starting is where I will end.
Choose memories. Your own memories of pleasure.
You cup fresh water in sunlight.
You waft a fragrance towards you.
You touch the fingers of a loved one.
Breathe and be ready.
Do you notice a tiny movement? A small involuntary movement of your fingers?
You have no secrets from each other.
You see your fingers make movements.
You, your brain, your fingers are in a union of great intimacy, delicacy and simplicity.
No third party is present. It is safe to mutually love and adore.
Yes! Your fingers smile up at you!
As long as you breathe, your fingers will respond. It is their way of smiling back at you.
They are inclined to smile. It is just what fingers do.
Just like breathing, this is a lifetime companionship. Trust their tiny unfretful movements.
Let go. Smile at your own hand, and at the magic that is in the air between you.
That is all there is. Magic comes when love is given time and space.
If you should stop and find yourself at rest, make time for yourself, there is something you can do. I do it.
Put any smile on your face, and let it be your smile to your own heart. Eyes closed, touch your fingertips into your own heart in a peaceful moment of open enquiry.
You will see that all your heart ever wants to do, all it ever wanted to do, is to sing songs of love to the glory of you.
It’s what hearts do!
Let your hand do this gesture always with tenderness and respect. Smile to your heart. Eyes closed, smile to your heart with mouth, lips and eyes.
The more you smile together, alone together, the more your heart will feel to be brave to step into your life. To be in your life again. The way it was, as it always was, time out of mind.
A friend returns with love-light in the eyes.
This friend knows you far better than you can imagine.
This friend whose love will never fail you, nor let you down.
Whose wisdom is yours for the asking.
Yours the secret now!
You know the story your hand can tell you. It is a love story.
A story that is as precious, as valuable, as healing, as sustaining, as magic, as life itself. A story as beautiful as you.
~ Love is present EveryNow

“No question; answer is before”

“No question; answer is before”
Here it may be that you could find the bits of hope you may be hoping to find.
Be on guard that your very question, when it frames the object it seeks, could obfuscate your attempts to find answers.
Just because I can prefix it with a why, does not necessarily mean there has to be an answer.
Mostly, why-questions aren’t truly questions at all. They are expletives of ignorance.
Fire patterns of Why’s up into the air and try to follow their trail of unanswers. What shows up is the shouting voice of the questioner.
TS Eliot wrote,
‘The only wisdom we can hope to acquire is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.’
Yes, you may reply. But what about the endless challenge and excitement of the questions, “Why”?
I say they are superficial, short-lived and excite only frustration. The more I know, the more I see I don’t know.
Humility never asked why.
Why is the answer to the origin of Life the Universe and Everything so intractable and so elusive?
It is dawning on some that ideas themselves are limited within our capacity to imagine what is at or beyond the boundaries of our conscious thought.
Our Human perspective or point of reference is, perhaps, eternally self-limiting.
We do not know what questions to ask perhaps because the perspective from which we begin to surmise and then set about trying to comprehend what “is”, is a perspective which can never visualise the wider perspective outside of itself of what “really is”.
I want my heart to be happy and at peace with the continuum it was born into and loves so much to be sharing with others.
For several decades, my heart’s wisdom has been ringing like a bell with the words from a poem I wrote in 1974. It has been chanting them back to me over and over,
“No question; answer is before”
I now listen to the voice of my heart, because the magic in these words feels so right every time my heart brings them back to me,
“No question; answer is before”
These words ease my aching mind, unlock my ability to surrender my will, and truly ‘make me lie down in green pastures, lead me beside quiet waters, refresh my soul.’

~ Love is present EveryNow