Still Summer

It is October, but summer weather was still with us as of yesterday. Amazing! But summer weather in Missouri is still far better than summer weather is on the Gulf Coast.

I an a year into phase 3 of my life, my post career life. I built in several situations for phase 3, and these are evolving.

I\’ve been a Starbucks employee for 11 months, but in my current store for only 6 months. I find that my partners are now loosening up. They see that I am upholding my end of the work, and that they don\’t need to be scared of an older person. I am enjoying being on the team more each day. My body has become used to the work and I find the really busy days to be energizing. I know many customer\’s names and so relate to them also. So I count this part time job as a successful experiment.

Now that my situation with work is more routine, I can divert attention to writing projects. I find myself mulling over and over the neuro science of addiction, modern addiction treatment and spirituality. The decision to have a spiritual life is really a complete separation from the addicted life. The spiritual life is a complete shift in focus, and combating addiction is left behind. The missing piece is that spirituality works but can\’t be grasped in a material sense. Yet I think my approach to writing about it sufficiently provides the needed glimpses. The content is written. I continue too plow through editing and filling in gaps. This week, I got a chapter introduction done to share with my writer\’s critique group.

In general, and several times a day, I feel satisfaction in where I am at in life. I can still go out and run 10 miles for fun. I feel joy in physical fitness. I live in a place that is perfect for me. My bills are paid. I have time to read and write, or do the \”deep work\” as Cal Newport calls it. I live in a different world than the older ladies of my socio economic group, and I\’m happy about that. I am extremely glad to be me, and that is a huge change from a year ago when I was still stuck in a corporate box.


The Bread of Life

The thing I want out of life, this life and all the others, is God. Like a salmon returning to spawn time after time, I came back here for another journey. 

Here is a new thought: maybe I hated my mother\’s womb because I knew that this life\’s journey was starting at spiritual rock bottom. I wasn\’t born into spiritual privilege; like having enlightened or philosophical parents. I wasn\’t born already half way up the mountain. I was born into alcoholism, co-dependence; the deepest pain and despair imaginable existed my family.

I looked at the DNA of pain and anger and hate. I felt the net of this pain full DNA settle in. I fought off the poisons of thalidomide and alcohol. Then I looked up. I saw that somehow I could climb out of this pit. Somehow I could find sunlight. I realized the energy it would take. Begrudgingly I said, \”Okay God. I\’ll do it.\”
When I left the convent, I was determined to be spouse to the Lord anyway. When I left The Church, I was determined to have communion anyway. Jesus said, \”I am the bread of life.\” He is teaching us something new. It is not to have communion but to be communion. DNA and bread of life are the same thing. Allow Life to eat you. Be consumed by Life. 
Feed every scrap of pain into the fire of your heart burning within. Let the fire of your heart burn you up. This is life. This is communion. This is to be The Way, The Truth and The Life. This is to follow Jesus and be his disciple. This is the imitation of Christ.

Running Salvation

I am a troubled soul. Maybe all souls are troubled but they keep quiet about it. Most alcoholics I know think that they are troubled because they have an \”alcoholic personality.\” I know this idea comes from Bill Wilson, the founder of AA, but I do not agree with it. I think to be human is to have a troubled soul; and alcoholics use alcohol to deal with it.

My spirituality has been what I use to deal with my troubled soul. And I\’ve come to believe it is not my soul that is troubled. It is my ego. So every morning, I have to do something about my ego. My ego is always pissed that life hasn\’t been that great for it. My ego always hates the people around me. My ego always thinks God is not there.

I did my spiritual work this morning with exactly this outlook on the world. Its funny to spend the evening before feeling the strong call of God to inner silence and then wake up in the morning a complete bear. But, I asked for divine help, \”I need to see the light in me.\”

And so I went running: extremely warm out there, full moon, no T-storms, freshly cut slit in the cuff of my CWX capris made them finally comfortable, not very energetic so I ran slowly. I had about 80 minutes for this run. My mind was mulling over my emotional states and wondering if I am hopelessly depressed, again reviewing the impossibility of re-joining society.

And then the miracle. I can\’t remember exactly all the thoughts but I\’ll re-cap. I realized I can only go further into the belief that the world is an illusion and not worry about it. Then I was uplifted with the thought that I would be given whatever I needed for today. So my fear of the future and my difficult employment disappeared. I entered the now and realized God was with me now.

I am in transition from thinking this world is real to know this world is an illusion and identifying with my true self, which is in God. I am in transition from ego relationships to the one real relationship which we all have and are, the beloved Son of God.

Then, I thought, \”all I\’ve wanted for a long time was a life of contemplation of God.\” Contemplation of God is the call I heard at the age of 22 when I was in Israel watching Hassidic Jews pray. Contemplation was the real reason I sought monastic life. Contemplation is the reason I began ultra running. Then the thought came that everything was a gift and contemplating the gifts was contemplating God. This completely diffused my hatred and fear of a certain person. They became gift not enemy (which is the point of spirituality IMO). Nothing more need be done than to realize this. Then it struck me. The reality of God is that I am now in a total embrace of love and everything is gift.

I totally believed this for a brief instant. I saw the light for a brief instant.

Now that was a successful run and it is for enlightenment that I run.