Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Wordy Wednesday 2: Living Through The Plains

“Living through the plains” means realizing that Life isn’t some constant party where the clean up time never arrives, where we are constantly surrounded by loved ones who act perfectly nice all the time, where the music never stops playing and no matter what it is, it’s your favorite song, and where we look amazing although we haven’t looked in the mirror for hours because we’ve been too busy dancing. Oh, and we can eat and drink whatever we want because we’ll never gain any weight from it nor be sick in any way!

It’s realizing that Life is work, Life is boring, Life is lonely, Life is un-fulfilling, Life is tiring, and Life is really sucky sometimes, but mostly, it’s ordinary, Life is just ordinary. It isn’t TV or the movies or books. Those are entertainment. Life is not entertainment, it is a state of being.

But thankfully, “living through the plains” is also realizing that Life is a wonderfully amazing experience where we can still be blissful and not have to be a Kardashian.

Most days it’s just me and the cats and the trees and the birds and the squirrels and the chipmunks and the art. And somehow, amazingly enough, I am able to create a meaningful day for myself without a flourish of trumpets or cheers. That’s not always easy, especially when our society constantly bombards us with the idea that,“If you aren’t BIG, you aren’t important. If you aren’t KNOWN, you aren’t needed. If you aren’t POPULAR, YOU ARE NOBODY!” We are constantly looking toward other people to pay more and more attention to us while we pay less and less attention to ourselves because we’re too busy trying to get the attention of said other people.

To own the plain’ness of your life is more of a triumph than to live some public existence. The courage it takes to live a small life and find meaning in it will probably only ever be rewarded by you and the life itself.

Okay, let’s get into Webster’s 7th New Collegiate Dictionary and break it down-

Plain: noun : from Latin planus - flat or level: treeless country, a broad unbroken expanse, something free from extraneous matter (coming from the outside and having no relevance), free of impediment to view, unobstructed, evident to the mind or sense, obvious, clear.

That means a place with no shade from the scorching sun, nowhere to hide from anything or anyone, nothing to distract you or to call attention away from’s just You and your life.

Some would call this hell. What they are actually saying is that spending time with their Self is unpleasant and not just unpleasant, but torturous and vile. Seriously?

Some would say, “I would go crazy.” Would you really? First of all, only people who think they aren’t crazy are actually crazy. Second, you may become disturbed at deep levels because you aren’t used to actually dealing with your own feelings and thoughts, but there is tons of guidance available out there (see suggested reading).

‘The Plains’ are a good place to be. Any place that provides the opportunity to “come out into the open, which is the only place where you can meet God” to find out Who You Are is a good place. We have hidden ourselves away from ourselves for far too long. Cowering in the shadows. Afraid to claim our own ordinary, plain ‘ole self. (quote from The Awakened Heart Project)

Plain is related to another word that looks different, but we pronounce it the same.....

Plane: noun: from Latin planus - level (from diminutive of libra, weight, balance) 1 a: a surface of such nature that a straight line joining two of its points lies wholly in the surface - Plane applies to any real or imaginary flat surface in which a straight line between any two points on it lies continuously in it.

We are a line. When we are standing upright or lying down flat, our bodies create a line. Inside, there are two lines, that I can think of, that connect us together - one is the spine and the other is the line of the Chakra System. (Did you know that butterflies in your belly is really your third chakra tickling you and saying pay attention to me?) We can live wholly (and holy) if we are connected to our self by multiple points, such as heart and mind. We cannot live a balanced life if we are only connected to our mind nor only connected to our heart. Neither is very wise on its own, but together they can guide us well.

A plane is also (2) a level of existence, consciousness, or development.

There are many levels of awareness and of being’ness. Awake is one. Asleep is another. There are many more in-between and out-between (if that makes sense). Becoming more and more aware in our daily life is vital to self-development and to living the life we long to live. Why we do the things we do. Why our life is the way it is. Why when so and so does such and such we want to scream. These are all things we can ask ourselves while hanging out in ‘The Plaines.’ Many times we sabotage ourselves and don’t know why or even that we’re doing it because we’re so wrapped up in other things or people.

It’s easy when we think we’re paying attention (but in truth we probably aren’t) to get caught up in unnecessary drama. Many of our regrets are made up of times when we really weren’t connected with ourselves enough to be able to say, “Okay, what’s REALLY going on here and how do I want to respond to this situation?”

My friend Dee describes the levels of awareness like a tree. The higher up, the broader the view. Down on the ground you can only see so far, but high in the branches you can see for miles. Isn’t it funny then that there’s a kind of tree called the plane tree (Sycamore)? It’s also called Platanus which is akin to the Greek word platys which means broad. The dictionary indicated that there was “more {to be found} at {the word} Place.”

Place: noun: from feminine of platys - broad, flat; akin to Latin planta - sole of the foot. 1 a: a way for admission or transit

‘The Plains’ are your ticket into you, they are your way through the harshness of Life. They are a passage from one level to another. Wanna know how?

Plane: verb intransitive: from the plane formed by the wings of a soaring bird

Plane: 3 a: one of the main supporting surfaces of an airplane.

There are two main points here:

This balanced surface is necessary for flight. Flight will not only not happen without it, but more likely a crash will occur. It is up to us to maintain our own personal balance. (Although in my art I still believe one good wing is all we need ;)

Assistance will be provided to you. Even on ‘The Plains’ with no one else in sight, we are not left alone. A pilot has a guiding voice, watching out, watching over, telling them which direction to head, (as well as many unseen others working to help the plane arrive safely), but it’s up to them to fly the plane.

You know, an airplane is a great way to get from one place to another quickly, far above the surface level traffic where it’s just a bunch of time wasting red lights and honking horns. Up there, close to our maker, it’s quiet, peaceful, and so much easier to hear that still small voice saying to us, “Hineni.” *

Key points and reminders:

* Hineni (pronounced hee-nay-nee) is a Hebrew word that means “here I am” or “here I stand”. It is the answer to the deep calling from within (that which can be known as “God”) that says, “I am willing to do that which I am called to do. I am willing to face that which I am called to face. I know it will be labored AND painful, yet I am willing. I will feel emotions, yet I will not run. I will feel physical distress, yet I will not run. I will struggle to remain. But I will again respond with Hineni, Here I am and Here I stand until I am somewhere else, saying, ‘Hineni’.”

Don’t be afraid to spend time with you. You should be your own BFF.

Claiming yourself without reservation is a healing balm on your human spirit.

Consciousness is vital. What am I thinking about???? And what do I think about what I’m thinking about?

Many people have a case of the ‘I don’t matters’, especially artists. It’s a fact (yeah) that no matter how many trumpets you have blasting your every action, if you don’t have self-worth you have nothing. History has shown us how many have destroyed themselves simply because they couldn’t detect their own worth and value. Popularity has never saved anyone from death.

Being on top doesn’t matter - the reason is because there is no such thing as being on top. The good news is also bottom doesn’t exist.

On ‘The Plains’ you are free to be who you are, not who they want you to be. What a relief!

Honestly, it’s probably better that you’re not a Kardashian.....too many distractions, too many ropes pulling you in too many directions and most of them are attached to a tree at the other end waiting to hang you.

Mental and emotional stability (I’m not talking crazy or not crazy, I’m talking stable vs. not stable), which takes work (this is not something that is generally a natural gift for us all), is needed to pass through ‘The Plains’. It takes work to keep You in control of you. Many of us think we are in control of ourselves, but in reality it is our past that is controlling us. We are simply playing out roles that were handed to us by whoever was around us when we were young and impressionable.

“On the exterior, he (The Sage) lives simply, almost austerely (dry, unadorned, plain), but his inner world is filled to overflowing with richness.” (The Faeries’ Oracle - Froud and MacBeth) Your inner world is too.

Personal notes:

In the ‘plain’ life I live, my focus is on enjoyment. Did I enjoy my day? If not, why not? Is it wrong of me to focus on my own enjoyment? Is it selfish? Why? I deserve to enjoy my life. I was not put here to learn, but not to suffer.

Entertainment to the hubby and I lately has been the hummingbirds and the baby racoons (aren’t they cute?). Nothing real fancy about that, but we’re there every night looking for them.

I battle against that voice that says I don’t matter. I don’t care about popularity, nor appreciation. I simply want to be a blessing. That is my goal. My ego cares, but I just don’t. Caring about that stuff has never gotten me anywhere good.

I am almost constantly catching myself doing stuff - going over old stories in my mind, telling someone off in my head after I already decided it wasn’t worth it to do so, being worried about something that I cannot change or control, muttering about petty annoyances, the list could go on.....but I catch myself and say, “Hey stop thinking about that” or “Get lost” or “There’s nothing I can do about that” and I return to the present moment. 3 minutes later I do the same thing over again. :)

Suggested reading list:

Dark Nights of the Soul by Thomas Moore
stories by Paulo Coelho, especially Veronica Decides to Die and The Alchemist
many kinds of oracle cards are helpful as well, I’ve used The Faeries’ Oracle by Froud and MacBeth for years
The Sevenfold Journey by Anodea Judith and Selene Vega
Iyanla Vanzant!! In the Meantime, Yesterday I Cried
SARK’s early works

~Thanks for taking this journey with me and I hope it blesses you~

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