Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Following Your Feelings

Haven't we all experienced electrifying performances? Books that keep us reading all night? Songs that keep repeating in our heads until we find ourselves dancing to them at all different times? Pictures that make us feel like we wish we could do that?  Meals that make us wish we could cook like that? Inventions that make us say I wish I had done that?
Haven't we all had the experience of meeting someone who has that electricity, that fire, but for whatever reason, we did not go for it?
We all have that ability to create when we feel it, to be there when we feel it, but so often we have put that feeling on the shelf and told ourselves that we aren't really that good or that no one really cares? We know that we owe it to ourselves in this lifetime, even if we only do it once or once in a while, to just go ahead and give it our best shot? Doesn't it feel good? Next time you are inspired and have a feeling, give it all you got and see what happens. You will probably surprise yourself.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Asking Questions About Food

I do not ever recall a time when our country ran out of milk. In fact, our farmers have been so efficient that I remember stories of them dumping milk to keep the prices up. I remember stories of the government buying tons of cheese to keep the prices up. So why do we need to give our cattle a hormone to make them produce more milk? Quite a mystery isn't it? So I choose to eat dairy products that do not have the bovine growth hormone.


When you get with that unexpected illness that suddenly has you up feverish, sweating, stomach cramping, wanting nothing more than to curl up in a ball and sleep some more and this goes on for a few days, we often call this flu, for lack of a more precise term.

So when the worst of it finally passes, you awake and it is daylight, and you think that you will have a cup of coffee for the first time in days, and as you sit there, sipping it, and feel your consciousness gently coming back into your body, your physical sensations realigning with your awareness, there is nothing to do but savor the moment. Do not rush it. Listen, in the silence of the place to all the little sounds you generally overlook, the sound of the refrigerator motor, the sound of heat coming through the room, the faint sound of neighbors and traffic.

This is an exquisite moment when the appreciation of being alive and having a body comes slowly back into focus. There is still silence, and as I begin to wash, the sound of hot water running through the pipes. In a little while, I will have chicken soup for breakfast. Yes, I always have chicken soup in my kitchen, and yes, it always helps me recover from illness.

It a little while, I may put on some soft music, solo piano, flute or cello, so that I hear gentle harmonies as I come back into full consciousness.

These moments of recovery from illness are to be savored, letting mind and body settle back into place gently. Simply be aware and notice all the subtle sights, sounds and senses as your mind and body reintegrate. There is nothing to do but let it come together. Often, it is these moments of recovery from difficulty that sharpen our senses and present us with moments of awareness where we cannot do anything but be present. It will serve us well in times of stress to be able to remember this.