The grounds of happiness, loving relationships and a just and flourishing society is honesty. And yet our current times are characterized by a plethora of deception – both societally, and often in more subtle ways, in our personal lives. This talk examines the deep conditioning we have to deceive others, and to avoid facing and acknowledging our own vulnerability. We then explore how we can commit ourselves to deepening our truth telling, and in so doing, creating a climate of integrity and trust that can lead to a more compassionate world (a talk from the 2017 archives).
The sign of truthfulness is a kind of sincerity where you feel innocent, clear, tender and real. ~ Tara
Being truthful is the new beautiful. ~ Suzy Kassem
An honorable human relationship – that is one in which two people have the right to use the word love – is a process of deepening the truths they can tell each other. It is important to do this because it breaks down human self-delusion and isolation. ~ Adrienne Rich
Becoming conscious of our intentions is the first step to truly aligning our life with our heart. This talk explores identifying when we are being driven by grasping and fear, and ways we can bring compassion to unmet needs and discover the deeper longing – the liberating intention – that guides us to freedom.
Gamble everything for love if you are a true human being. Half-heartedness doesn’t reach into majesty. You set out to find God, but then you keep stopping for long periods at mean-spirited roadhouses. ~ Rumi
The rush and pressure of modern life are a form, perhaps the most common form of contemporary violence. To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone and everything, is to succumb to violence. ~ Thomas Merton
Before you agree to do anything that might add even the smallest amount of stress to your life, ask yourself, What is my truest intention? Give yourself time to let a yes resound within you. When it’s right, I guarantee that your entire body will feel it. ~ Oprah Winfrey
Prayer is a communing with our enlarged being. This talk examines less conscious forms of prayer, and how we can evolve the power of our prayers by opening into the depth of our longing, and reaching toward our true belonging (from the 2016 IMCW Spring Retreat).
How I yearn to belong to something, to be contained in an all-embracing mind that sees me as a single thing.
And I yearn to be held in the great hands of your heart.
Oh let them take me now.
Into your hands I place these fragments, my life, and you my God spend them however you want.
~ Rainer Maria Rilke
Refuse to fall down
If you cannot refuse to fall down,
refuse to stay down.
If you cannot refuse to stay down,
lift your heart toward heaven,
and like a hungry beggar,
ask that it be filled.
You may be pushed down.
You may be kept from rising.
But no one can keep you from lifting your heart
~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés
[CC] ~ The Buddha taught that this whole life – including our thoughts, feelings and actions – arise from the tip of intention. While our intentions are usually marbled with wanting and fear, when intention comes into the light of consciousness, it unfolds into its most pure essence. This talk explores ways that when we are stuck in reactivity, we can become aware of intention, and find our way to the aspiration that expresses our most awake and loving heart.
“Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
With your one wild and precious life?”
The Buddha taught that we live our lives on the tip of intention, it is the seed of our future. This talk explores the difference between “limbic” intentions driven by grasping or fear, and intentions that are the call of our awakening heart. You will learn how to identify and shift from a “limbic” to wise intention, and several different ways you can more readily and regularly access your deepest aspiration.
When we bring a full presence to prayer, it becomes a powerful pathway of homecoming. This talk explores how prayer heals the pain of separation, and offers practical guidance in what poet John O’Donohue calls “unearthing our ancient belonging.”
“What’s it like if you bow your head and whisper and call on something larger?”
Our suffering arises from the unseen, unfelt, resisted parts of our psyche. This talk explores ways we can deepen self-honesty and reconnect to a wholeness of being that enables us to live with spontaneity, confidence, wisdom and love.
A quote by Elizabeth Lessor from the talk: “My prayer to god every day: Remove the veils so I might see what is really happening here and not be intoxicated by my stories and my fears.”
Prayer, when cultivated consciously, energizes and guides us on the spiritual path. This talk investigates the difference between wanting, with its narrow fixation, and the prayer that arises out of our deep heart’s longing. We explore how living prayer, the prayer that arises from consciously inhabiting longing, can carry us home to loving presence. As John O’Donohue writes, prayer is the bridge between longing and belonging. ~ (a favorite talk from 2010)
Prayer is a communing with our enlarged being. This talk examines less conscious forms of prayer, and how we can evolve the power of our prayers by opening into the depth of our longing, and reaching toward our true belonging.
All of our actions, our entire life experience, arises from the energy of intention. While it’s natural that our intentions are shaped by egoic wants and fears, when we bring this into conscious, compassionate awareness, we can discover the deep aspiration that guides and energizes our awakening hearts and minds. This talk explores the movement from egoic intention to liberating intention…the movement from “my will” to “my heart’s will.”