I Live A Charmed Life – By Design

“… sound doctrines are all useless… you have to change your life. (Or the
direction of your life.)… wisdom is all cold… you can no more use it for
setting your life to rights than you can forge iron when it is cold… The
point is that a sound doctrine need not take hold of you; you can follow it
as you would a doctor’s prescription. – But here you need something to
move you and turn you in a new direction… Once you have
been turned around, you must stay turned around. Wisdom is passionless.
But faith is what Kierkegaard calls a passion” (Wittgenstein, L. (1980) Culture and Value, introduction by G. Von Wright, and translated by P. Winch. Oxford: Blackwell, p.53).

Yesterday was my first official day running the daddy day care, as the experience has been called. More formally I began a twelve week “family medical leave act” leave of absence from my traditional work to continue the care of my now 4 month old son.  Just to clarify, I was off throughout most of the month of December using vacation time performing the same task and assisting him in his journey from around three months to four months.  The difference now is the amount of “at cause-ness” that went into taking three months off from a day job that I’ve held for over ten years.  The difference is the value that I’m noticing in trading my not too shabby salary for an irreplaceable experience.  Isn’t this really what defines value – what you’re willing to give up for one thing in order to experience another thing?

From what I’ve been told, I am part of the 3% of American men who take the incredible oppoortunity that the FMLA provides. Would I say that I’m special for being part of such an elite number? Is that the point of this post, to indicate what a great American man I am, what a dedicated father, what a groundbreaking thinker and life live-er?  Well, I am still housing this ego so maybe partially.

Sharing this story is also partially a tribute to “my old man” (as Springsteen may have said).  It’s an acknowledgement of the context in which he, and many of us fathers, live our lives as the provider, the bread winner, income earner.  Trading these experiences of being there with our children who we love so much that we would trade the time that we would have with them to go out day after day and provide for their survival.  The money that buys the food, water, shelter that allows our species to continue on.  As a child I had a sense that was how it was for my father, sensed that he didn’t particularly care for the 6 am to 3 pm, five days per week for 35 years blue collar life.  But I was clear that he did it for his family and for that I knew I was loved even if it wasn’t verbalized.

It’s also an acknowledgement of the shifting context that enables women to work (for equal pay, maybe?), be the primary income producer in a family, and provide value and meaning into a working world equal to what it is that they’re giving up to fight that fight and endure that struggle, and equal to what they’re leaving behind.  I see my joining the 3% as the seldom noticed back of the hand of that struggle.  Yet, you can also hear the “speaking from” the current paradigm exhibited here and that’s the real point.

The intended value of this post – you trading your time to read it for what you may get out of it – is in noticing the privilege that this opportunity is for me, and then noticing that it’s part of a carefully laid out plan for producing results consistent with living a life equal to the opportunity that living life is.  A once in a lifetime shot to live fully in the one and only life that I have.  Living a life that is equal to the opportunity that living life is does not just happen.  I like to say that I live a charmed life, which I do.  It isn’t charmed in that it just “magically” happens however.  I live a charmed life because I take the stand that I live a charmed life.  I say that I live a charmed life and then I produce results consistent with living a charmed life (or I don’t).

There was a great deal of build up, tension, uncertainty and ambiguity in getting to this point, living a charmed life does not mean living an easy life by any stretch.  Which is why I write this post today, rather than a few weeks ago.  I will occasionally share the massive failures in not producing the results consistent with living a charmed life – the ratio of 3:1 – 5:1 positive to negative must be maintained in this blog as a matter of maintaining the authenticity of it.  The results have been tallied in this exercise and it looks like we’ve made it.  The build up began over a year ago while I was still in the MPOD program, in the early stages of executing the formal plan, which has all been part of the overall plan, the sound doctrine.

While one is in the midst of any major change initiative it is often difficult to measure whether any change is really happening.  Changing the course of one’s life toward a previously unimagined future is often the most challenging of all change initiatives to measure.  When it is your life that is changing you’re just too close to it to know if it is “turning out” as envisioned.  Following a path that is being created as each step is taken is like navigating a thick forest on a moonless night.  You have your compass and you use it, but until you emerge from the brush as the sun rises above the clearing you’ve “entered”, created really, you can not know if you’ve navigated rightly.  Attempting to measure in the midst of the trees and darkness is a futile endeavor, orienting your steps with presence and purpose and letting your physical intuition be your guide is useful yet mis-steps are likely to occur.  It is only in looking back at that forest in the daylight that you can fully appreciate the steps that had been taken, the risk that was navigated.

Building some competence through practical application of causing intentional change allows your muscles of intuition to strengthen, your resolve to walk your own path is refined, and your willingness to trust yourself, to have faith when the common, everybody knows the way it’s supposed to work, wisdom of the world is butting up against the stand that you are.

Look, I know that I’m just taking time off to stay home.  Millions, billions of people have done this.  For me, it’s not something that I’d ever considered, not because I didn’t consider it like I thought I couldn’t do it but because it never even showed up for me as a possible option that life could present to me.  In the spectrum of possibilities that life presents it was always there.  I didn’t see it.  I wasn’t open to looking to see what I wasn’t able to see.  It was concealed.  Then, along my path of continuing to question everything, to be a space where truth can show up, it revealed itself, unconcealed itself.  Aletheia.

My son caught a cold over the holidays.  He was a snotty, moaning, sickly mess on my first two days of daddy day care.  I’ve had sick babies in the past but I’ve never experienced them the way I did my son today.  In the past, these things were my wife’s concern, my mother-in-law’s, the baby sitter’s – I didn’t have a clue how to comfort a sick baby and I was going to be at work anyway.  That was the way it occurred within that context.  Yesterday and today, I experienced the complete privilege and satisfaction that goes along with being only of service to a sick little baby, even when all that service can be is to hold them and comfort them as they moan with that raspy sick little baby voice.  No room for my petty concerns, just room for being the space for comfort.  Charmed – by design.

From Love,

Ed

Being Time

Occasionally, if you’re paying attention, you’ll come across people that seem to have an effect on the flow of time.  Time is a rare commodity or so we think, so we relate to it and so it occurs.  Ironically, you have all the time you’ll ever need.  Spending some time with one of these people who “shift time” is an excellent way to significantly impact your life and allow you to experience the true nature of time.  If you’re paying attention.

I’ve had the opportunity over the past three weeks to take some vacation from work and spend my days with one of these people.  Being with him has allowed me to experience a flow of time that is both slower than what I’m used to in normal day to day life and makes the world outside and its passing of time seem much faster.  The days have flown by while at the same time I’ve found myself laboring to slow down, slow down my mind, slow down my desire to Do and just Be in time with this master of being.  At the same time, I can hardly believe that three weeks have gone by in the outside world from my view here inside this sanctuary.

The background image that I currently have plastered on my phone to snap me back to reality is a quote attributed to Buddha.  The quote is, “The trouble is, you think you have time”.  Quotes are useless in and of themselves.  You have to live the quote to experience it’s wisdom and power.  The full picture of this one in particular, like the visual image of the old woman/young woman, is easy to miss.  Easy to get caught up in the idea that the trouble is, you think you have time to do those things you’d rather put off until tomorrow.  Make that bucket list, get to it, what are you waiting for.  Certainly that is a valid interpretation. 

After spending a few weeks with the Master, the time shifter, what I see is that the trouble is, I think I have time.  <–Period.  It’s so easy to get caught up in the mind made construct of time.  I have a past, a present, a future and if I create this magnificent vision of “future” and live into it I can drastically alter my present and the way it occurs for me.   Or, I have this past, present and future and the reason my present looks the way it does is that I know I’ve incorrectly put my past in my future, so everything that I can hope to do will most likely turn out very much like it has in the past.

Time-shifter disagrees.  He has no past.  He has no future.  And what of his present?  He is present certainly.  But he doesn’t have a present either.  He doesn’t have to “get himself” into the present.  He is the present.  It alters who I am and my experience of time.  It radically points out when I’m somewhere else, not present.  It cracks me across the back with his swift stick when I’m somewhere other than here, now.

Sometime soon, in his future that I can speak about, he will gain that dual edged sword of language.  He will someday soon begin to relate to himself as an entity I, separate from me, separate from the world, separate from time and he will cease to be Time.  He will become concerned with me, and mine, and I.  He will believe that you are distinct from he.  Time-shifter will become ordinary.

With conversation, reflection, and time spent with other time-shifters he may regain what has been lost.  Don’t be confused that this occurring of being a time-shifter is relegated only to those with no language.  I’ve met some of these “enlightened” ones, consistently being.  I’ve also met some of these “enlightened” ones (we all are, aren’t we?) who shift time consistently doing.  You’ll notice these time-shifters as those who leave you “less than whole”, incomplete, causing you stress between what “should be” and “what is”. This space between being and doing is what we seek when we look for balance. 

Master has a complete support system in place for himself that allows for his wordly survival concerns to be taken care of.  Many of the other enlightened ones do as well.  This allows them to exist in a space of being, exist outside of time really.  When I’m hungry, I eat.  When I’m tired, I sleep.  When I cry, I cry.

When I have to poop, I poop.  This is where Truth/Love/Aletheia is experienced – out of Time, as Being Time.

Me and the Teacher

Me and the Teacher

With Love,

Ed

Love Telemarketers

Junior just happened to fall asleep in his swing while I was making the coffee.  I couldn’t seem to shake the grog out of my head this morning so the only solution seemed to be some heavy duty fresh ground coffee.  Emerson goes in the swing for a couple of minutes, brew the coffee, maybe even eat some Cheerios to reduce my risk of heart disease.  Simple plan.

Ring, Ring.  Sears on the caller ID.  Hello.  Yes, this is him.  This guy wasn’t trying to offer me a car loan from India like most of the telemarketing calls I’ve been getting since I attempted to get some financing for a car I bought for somebody over a year ago on bankrate.com or whatever it was – never use them, ever.  He was kind, fairly well spoken and wanted to send somebody over to give me estimates on any of the eight kinds of services they offer.  Would it be replacement windows, an overhang of some sort, kitchen remodel, maybe a finished basement (he didn’t mention that one, but I made it up when he asked his next question).

“Sir, if you had twenty thousand dollars what would be the first thing that you would do to your house?”, he asked.  Up until that point, even though I had not yet hit the “on” button on the coffee grinder/brewer, I was interested in having a powerful, meaningful relationship with this random caller on the phone.  Even though the phone rang, potentially destroying my opportunity to eat some Cheerios, I still knew that love could be present and experienced with this guy from Sears.  That’s who I am after all.  It’s the purpose I was born for, so I say.

Evasion was the tactic I chose.  Two options came to my mind.  If I had 20k laying around that I didn’t have any purpose for (and I also happened to have another cool half million laying around that I did have some purpose for because if I had 20k laying around I’d have some purpose for it.  In fact, the money was not the issue. Using the money to do whatever to my house is not what I’ve been figuring I’d do with the 20k that I have laying around) what would my next project be.  What first came to mind is some windows in my sunroom because the builder used just about the worst possible windows that have ever been manufactured in my sunroom.  I knew it would be cooler in there with all those windows but nothing like this.  Or, finish the basement.  I’ve been wanting to do that for a while, wanting to do it myself really for the “fun and enjoyment” of such a large home project undertaking, but since I haven’t gotten “a round to it” for so long, if I had the 520k laying around, I’d have somebody finish the basement.

I didn’t say either of those things.  I said I don’t know.  I wasn’t forthcoming with the information that his question elucidated from wherever responses to questions come forth from.  Yeah, ummm, I’m not really sure.  He pressed on, even gave me some other questions that brought to mind the same responses.  I knew I was being evasive at this point.  Love was out the window.  Not with this guy.  Not here on the phone while the baby slept in the swing.

There isn’t much required to have love present and experience.  The simplest things in life are often the most elusive.  Imagine your day to day life if there was love present and experienced with everybody you came across.  Imagine your work.  Your home life.  Your visits to the grocery store.  All of those billions sharing the same affinity for themselves that they share for you.  Babies wouldn’t be all that special anymore with their baby magic that makes you want to be around them.

LoveModel

Models are only as useful as the results they allow you to produce.  Here’s my model for having love be present.  I’ll need to expand on the three aspects of presence, vulnerability, and trust at some point.  But use what you think they mean and play around.  I’m pretty sure it’s all that is necessary.  Try it with your spouse, your friends at the holidays, your mother-in-law…see what happens.  Write a blog entry that doesn’t make much sense.  Be vulnerable when they’re being aggressive.  Be present when they’re not.  Trust that if you give them the answer that you’d probably get your basement finished if you had 20k laying around  that your relationship will deepen, become more meaningful, and the slightest hint of “something” will arise.  I call it Truth/Love/Aletheia. 

I didn’t go for it with the telemarketer.  I still haven’t quite mastered being vulnerable in one area when it will affect trust or presence in another area.  Let me know what you find.

With Love,

Ed

Love Present

The premise of this blog and of my work is quite simple really.  It is this.  There is love.  It is everywhere, all around us, in us, through us, connecting us, aside from us, outside of us, everything that is and is not occurs in the context of this love.

That’s really it.  So love.  Each other.  One another.  Yourself.  Experience it.

That’s also where it gets complicated.  The first complication is that love is a word and like all words it is a symbol for something, though it is not that something.  So love (even with a capital L) does not capture the something.  It doesn’t properly explain it or identify it.  As a word it’s open to interpretation, misinterpretation, misunderstanding, understanding.  Due to this complication I call it Truth/Love/Aletheia.  Aletheia may be the best word I’ve found for the phenomenon, at least as Heidegger uses it in the context of the rest of his Being and Time.

Mostly the phenomenon is concealed from our experience.  This is the second complication.  This causes a whole host of additional complications which I won’t attempt to go over.

Given these two basic complications, my work has been challenged to take root.  My work is to have love be present and experienced.  That’s it.  Mostly I get in the way.  Since I’ve really only experienced the phenomenon a dozen or so times with people outside of my “close circle” and even mostly have difficulty with my work with those inside my “close circle” it’s been a challenge to really put a finger on the components of having the love that is always there sort of “arise” in the space of experience.

One year ago today I, for the first time, intentionally caused love to be present and experienced with people that were, only a few days before, complete strangers.  Something shifted in the space of myself and these two guys that I was having the conversation with, creating together the phenomenon and clearing the space for love to be present. In the end I was left different and known.  They were left known, or something, as well. Honestly, we still haven’t fully made sense of what happened, what occurred.  But we did all agree, many months later that something happened. There was a presence of being known or loved or connected or something unlike anything we’d experienced before, at least with random people that we’d only just met.

And I should point out that we’d been drinking Belgian beer all night.  Then, after we experienced love as a presence Sinterclause showed up.  And then I got really drunk so I could get inside the head of this incredible guy I know who jumps off of stuff, to get a better understanding of what that is for him.  The night ended with me drunken facebooking.  The morning began with severe pain.

CIMG1683

Since that day, really the day after, when I found myself “barfing more” I’ve not made a lot of sense out of it all.  Much of the experience has concealed itself again and I’ve found myself trying to recapture or recreate the event.  Which I of course know is about the best way to not have it occur again.  So, today I guess I’m just reminiscing about Truth/Love/Aletheia.

With Love,

Ed

Thankful…For What I’ve Lost

Thanksgiving day.  Not much of an opportunity between prepping the food (assisting really), loading the car, arriving at the feast, eating too much.  But that seems to be the order of things lately so I’d better adapt and blog anyway.

It’s been a couple of months and in that time I’ve spent reflecting I notice it’s been a year of loss.  Some of the losses are tough to get over – my attachment to how things had been, wishing for that one more moment of whatever.  In an amazing life of blessings, opportunities and events to be thankful for I notice about every decade or so there seems to be a groundswell of losing.  Not having things go my way, having endings rather than new beginnings.

This has been one of those years.

Today then I give thanks for the things I’ve given up either by choice or by the natural progression of life.  In the past (no guarantee it will be this way in the future) giving up all of those things has been a clearing of space and clutter within the space.  Giving those things up has allowed for seeing who I’ve been being in those relationships, how I could have made the difference that made a difference, or enjoying the fact that I made the type of adjustments necessary for living a powerful, fulfilling existence.  Giving up those things that I’ve lost allowed the clearing for the new magnificence to appear.

One thing reveals itself in times of loss – if you are willing to be bold and make yourself vulnerable.  The grieving and sorrow and anger and fear of more loss are an indication of the true loss, the loss of love present and experienced.  It’s challenging to trust again when one has lost, or make oneself vulnerable again, or willing to be present to the current experience in the moment.  But if I dust myself off, cry when necessary or be angry when necessary, and then forgive again or let go of my attachment to how I expected it to go, the intention that I had that was thwarted, and deliver that undelivered communication what shows up in that space again is Love.  Truth.  Aletheia.  The source of it all.

The same thing that reveals itself when we’re winning.  It’s always there and sometimes we’re just blind to it.  I miss my Father this year at Thanksgiving, and the others.  But the presence of their love is here if I allow the space for it.  If you allow yourself to experience it, I hope you sense the presence of my love for you.

With Sweet Sorrowful Truth/Love/Aletheia,

Ed

The Moment of Truth (Right Now)

When you’re being at the moment of truth, really just being the moment of truth, the experience of time’s passing slows dramatically.  The wisdom aspect of it is a knowing everything and a knowing nothing all at the same time.  Present.  To everything.  And Nothing.

It was a grey 1978 Ford Fairmont.  It had the sweet, dashed, between-the-windows stripe but that had been painted over by an Earl Sheib $89.95 special.  They used a matching grey but painted right over that sweet stripe…unbelievable.  That’s probably why it was so cheap.  Tony says we paid $50 bucks to Dave for it …I’m thinking it was a little more like $50 bucks each, but the certainty of that memory is lost to time.  I probably wasn’t present at that moment of truth.

Either way, the Fairmont wasn’t running.  Tony said he heard that Fairmont’s made great sleeper cars and that this one with the straight six under the hood could be a beast – not The Beast – that’s another moment of truth, but a beast.  The plan was that we would work on it in the neighbor’s garage, and when we were done with it we’d race it…Quigley Avenue or something.  Nothing like Norwalk or anything like that…at the time my ability to dream was a little stifled and suppressed by the stories I’d made up in the past.

It was supposed to turn out like this Fairmont.

That Ford Fairmont would have been really bad-a$$…not to mention that we sawed out the steel plate behind the backseat (I think Tony did all the work) so it would also be an incredible camping machine. Picture it – just pop out that back seat and two people could easily sleep in the trunk (and backseat) with nothing more than a sleeping bag.  It was like a Chevy Avalanche but in 1987 – we were way ahead of our time.  And it would have been an incredible racing machine – hah!  I just thought of this – not only was it a sleeper*, it was also a sleeper.  Visionaries.

The only problem with the plan was that neither of us really had enough money to sink into this car to turn it around.  It was Tony’s neighbor with the garage right next door so he spent some time over there messing with it, but I just don’t remember being over there all that often.  I remember feeling powerless to do anything because I didn’t know very much about cars at all, I had no money, and I was too worried about looking bad to admit any of that to anybody that may be able to assist us.  I recall highlights such as getting that steel cut out, and actually getting the thing running with tons of starter fluid directly into the opened up carburetor.  That was mostly what was wrong with it, the carburetor, and Tony tinkered away enough with it that we got it running.  We were so psyched, we had the hood off but we just had to take it out for a ride.  That was the only ride I ever had in our bad-a$$ Ford Fairmont.

Eventually the neighbor got sick of that heap sitting in her garage.  Something happened to the transmission…I wasn’t around when it did and I don’t know that I ever really understood what…exactly…happened.  I didn’t care. I was busy having other powerful life altering learning events. Eventually that car ended up sitting on a gravel lot at Pearl and Bader outside of a friend of ours’ house, a house he was renting I think.  It sat there for a few months.  It seemed like forever when I’d drive by and still see that car sitting there.  Time moved a lot slower even normally then…a few months seems like years when you just turned 18.

Seeing that lost dream sitting there for ALL THAT TIME eventually made me start asking Tony what exactly happened to the transmission.  Was there anyway to fix it? Did you even get underneath there to check it out?  What happened when it stopped working?  We stopped there to reveal the answers to these questions, maybe it was just so I’d stop asking questions and I could find out for myself.

Tony was there, Bob was there, Ed was there, maybe Chris from inside the house was there (he wanted it out of there by then too).  I don’t remember how we got there, or too much on either side of the moment of truth.  We took the factory jack out of the trunk and put it under the car and started jacking it up.  It was one of those uni-body cars or whatever they called them at the time…they were making cars lighter to get better gas mileage so the days of a big heavy frame were over.  And the jack was one of those expanding diamonds…starts out flat and raises up just enough at the very top so you can get a tire off.

When I was a kid I was always warned about getting under cars on a jack.  I only heard the story once about the friend of the family whose son got crushed by a car.  That kind of story only needed to be heard once and I didn’t even have any of the details.  The only thing I really knew about the story was that it happened the same day he was playing with a Ouija board with his friends.  It was an effective story – I was left fearful of getting under cars and playing with Ouija boards.

For whatever reason, that fear was not there that day (probably so I could someday write this story and alter the course of somebody’s life by revealing the distinction “being present”).  I must have really been messing with Tony, pressing him about the transmission.  I got down on my back and slid myself in there.  Once I started looking at that transmission I realized where I was.  I didn’t see any major leaks, but it looked quite a mess around the bell housing with greasy gloppy stuff all around.

Then time went all slow motion on me.  My senses were already heightened because I had just realized where I was, and at the same time the voice was chattering as it does about not wanting to look like a big wuss, freaking out and pulling myself out from under that car.  It didn’t matter.

While those two things were happening, another simultaneous sound was happening, and I was hearing it at the same time the voice was telling me that you wouldn’t want to look like a wuss.  Hearing a cheap, piece of crap, yet still solid steel Ford factory tire jack break through the rusted out, unibody, not-frame of a 1978 Ford Fairmont sounds exactly the way you would expect it to sound.  When you’re under that Ford Fairmont it sounds like the sound of chewing Peanut Butter Captain Crunch recorded and played in slow motion at a really high volume.

There is where the moment of truth began.  Like I said in my last post the moment of truth is happening every moment, every second, of every minute of every hour, of every day.  The Truth/Love/Aletheia about it is that those seconds, minutes, hours, days don’t actually exist – they’re something we’ve made up, and agreed that they exist.  All there is are moments of truth (right now).  It’s useful to be able to relay the stories of things that have happened in the seconds, and minutes, and hours, and days gone by or the plans of the seconds, and minutes, and hours, and days ahead but they are not to be confused with truth.

Aletheia.  An immediate unconcealing.  A revealing of Truth.  Love, present, and experienced.

During the slow motion crunching sound, while looking at the greasy bell housing, the instinct to turn my head happened.  During the slow motion crunching sound, while my head was turning I saw the car getting lower.  There was no voice in my head.  There was only that slow motion crunching sound, the car getting lower, the increased pressure on my pectoral muscles where the welded seam of the unibody not-frame met the floor boards of the more fuel efficient-than-my-father’s-old-blue-1970-Ford-Galaxy-500-that-my-brother-wrecked 1978 Ford Fairmont.

Wide-awake.  Aware. Not enough experience around it to know that’s what I was, not like being light aware and wide-awake.  Hearing everything, not loudly but clearly and crisply.  Seeing that the car had stopped moving, feeling my chest pinned yet still able to take in and let out breath, lightly yet heavily.  Seeing out of the periphery vision the feet scurrying by my feet outside from under the lightning fast sleeper Ford Fairmont.  The gasps.  The oh no’s, the oh-my-God, oh-my-Gods, leading to the Ed, Ed, are you alrights.  Situation assessed here under the car…not the “voices in my head” assessment…a silent knowing assessment without language – a Self assessment.  Without words.  Head’s not smashed, breathing heavy but good, no send me into unconsciousness pains, not laughing either – but feeling good.  Feeling grateful, and appreciative, and I can say it now as a story – loved.  Dodged a bullet loved, though, got lucky loved…not intentional and not having caused it.  Not willfully present and mindful and Wise.

Wisdom it was nonetheless.  The second time I’d felt it.  A time in slow motion oneness with the moment.  A knowing, sensing everything while knowing nothing at all.  Not dodging death, but just not yet time to die.  Under that car, one of the things I most feared happened and I was not dead (good thing I hadn’t been using a Ouija board).

That was how the experience was for me – drawn out in story here for sure, and I want you to understand that talking about the moments that fill a 15 second time span as a watch ticks – telling the story about those moments is not those moments.  Most of the time we’re missing those moments with the dialogue we’re filling the space with.  But life occurs in those moments, those moments of truth (right now).  And it is possible to  intentionally experience moments right now without all of the noise and distraction and consideration about how you look and what they’ll think and just be grateful and appreciative of them scurrying about acting astonished about what just happened even though what just happened always happens and when you’re present you’re not surprised that it just happened.  We can be present and wise right now.

As my friends like to tell the story…everybody’s freaking out and saying are you alright, Ed are you alright?  Then there’s a silence and they wait for the answer. As calm as can be, Ed says, “Pick….the….car….up.”  And that was how it was for me – calm as can be.  They picked the car up, I slid out and the moments carried on.  I grinned as I do.

With Love,

Ed

* A sleeper is a car that looks to be ordinary, nothing special…until you pull up next to it to race and only then is its Truth/Love/Aletheia revealed.

Being at the Moment of Truth

Mindfulness.  Being Present.  Wisdom.  Living in the moment.  Right now.

These are terms, words or phrases describing phemonena that occur within our experience.  Understanding that the term is not the phenomena and that the term does little justice to relaying the experience of the phenomena is a worthwhile thing to understand.  These different realms of “knowing” (concept, phenomena, experience) fall under the broad heading of epistemologies.

Truth/Love/Aletheia is dedicated to broadening and expanding knowledge of Truth/Love/Aletheia (right now).  There are many other terms which can be used to “label” the phenomena, many terms that are “like” the terms above, and many terms which are confused with and thereby dillute the understanding of the phenomena.  Explaining the phenomena will almost always be a second best effort of actually experiencing the phenomena.

Allowing you to gain first hand experience of the phenomena of wisdom is my desire in writing.  Honestly, there’s little use for it, as in, it can’t be used for the normal things we want – making money, having power, getting what we (think we) want (usually a result of money and power), being admired, maintaining the illusion of control.  What it does allow for is a “clean” place to come from and operate in the world.  It occurs as peace in experience.  In the world I see and experience from people (and myself) a great deal of suffering often inflicted on people by other people, and almost always inflicted on oneself.

“Wisdom”, (aka Truth/Love/Aletheia, mindfulness, being present, living in the moment, etc), “is not something to learn.  Wisdom is something which will come out of your mindfulness.  So the point is to be ready for observing things, and to be ready for thinking.  This is called emptiness of your mind.”  (Suzuki – Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind)

During a previous post I spoke of enlightenment and a being all things and light and nothing.  We live in the so called real world however and most of the time we aren’t experiencing being light.  We are making dinners, and working with other people, and buying things, and singing, and eating and doing what we do.  Wisdom is a being enlightened all the time, doing the mundane, being-in-the-world.  This is where truth/love/aletheia is experienced at the moment of truth.

The moment of truth occurs every moment when you’re present.  In the normal course of events you may not necessarily notice the moments in your life when you were fully present unless somebody shares the story of their experience with you and distinguishes being present.  In the next few of my posts I’m going to share some moments of truth that I’ve had – many of these moments just happened, as in – I was going about my day to day business and then blam – I was present; mindful, and empty of mind all at the same time – a dialetheia.

Sometimes people relay stories about things that I’ve done.  I don’t even know they’re telling other people about them and I find it funny when I hear about it later.  I still can’t tell if they’re telling those stories because I’m admired, or they thought well of me, or they’re telling these stories as a warning to others.  At this point I’m love either way.  One of the stories people tell about me is the time the car fell on me.  For me it was just The Moment of Truth.

With Love,

Ed

Why I (We) Share

This blog is attempting to forge or carve out a (fairly) uncommon conversational space Being-In-the-World (not really new, because many have spoken from it over the centuries) it may occur to you a certain way.  I’m not sure what that way is exactly, but when I’ve listened to such conversations prior to being able to hear such conversations in my past, they occurred many different ways.  Gibberish was one way. Poor use of grammar and language was one way. Offensive was another way.  Pretentious was definitely a way.  In some cases, I would later be able to see, they occurred as a threat.  I would react to them as a threat – fight or flight – the lizard brain reactivated.  My ego really pissed off.  Me reacting self-righteously as a response to the domination that the conversational truths were imposing on me.

I’m not saying that all of these entries are those types because certainly I miss the mark from time to time in my use of language. Perhaps I hadn’t been fully present to and coming from that place of Truth/Love/Aletheia.  Truth/Love/Aletheia.  Fleeting joy.  When I re-read the entries later, and they re-presence now what was present when I wrote them, and it occurs as that space of freedom that Aletheia allows/creates/is and I’m recreated anew in that moment then I know I’ve honored myself.  Honored us.

Being present and not, it has had the thought, “What is the point of this blog?  Why do you share what you share even though it may never be read, or misconstrued if it is read?  Why risk offending people, or exposing yourself or your family to any response to these posts?  What makes your blog different from all the other exhibitionists out there blogging away?  Who do you think you are?  You do know that this is out there for the world to read.  You have to continue making a living…”, it rages on, “Have you ever met a management consultant that speaks complete gibberish?”

“Why, yes I have”, I laugh to myself.  The conversation clearly dis-pleased.

Today, just now, I had a glimpse of why I share.  Why we all share really.  A reason of sorts other than the clear Aletheia of it that, “You do, because you do.  They do because they do.”  It’s so fleeting too…trying to escape me even as I type.  I had no intention of making an entry today, but then it was there.  And now the normal interruptions of the day are attempting to flit it away.

I (We) share, because it speaks to our (I’m going to use some language here that isn’t quite it) common-ness, our one-ness, our in-common-ness, our being-ness.  Even the voyeurs that share things that expose more of the Lie (that is, the not Aletheia), the paparazzi who share the dirt, the ones who gossip and connive about others to get their way and be righteous and self-serving.  Those who ensnare us in their storytelling of fear (that is, the not Love).

Our machinery is much more receptive to the fear based conversation as we’re designed to propagate our own survival.  Because of this design which often conceals Truth we also aren’t as practiced at speaking or sharing the so what of it.  For certain we have a challenge hearing it, really letting it land in our space and alter our being.  Always watchful, always on guard protecting this loosely held together story of absurdity.

It is that letting it land in our being, having our experience land in someone else’s being, as close to a why as there is a why.  We want to be known.  We want our experience to be known.  It is our sharing that is our last gasp of hope for us revealing what we’ve forgotten.  What we’ve concealed.  What we all seek.  What makes us who we are.

We (I) share because we are.  And I want to type “because we are one” or “because we are known” but that will both illuminate and cloud what it is.  We share because we are.  We are you and I.  We are you and me.  We are we.  We share because we share this experience.

Just because we appear separated by this flesh bag, this space of air or form or illusion between us DOES NOT mean we aren’t sharing this experience.  Just because you’re reading my thoughts that I typed at 1:43 pm (EST) while it’s (Insert your current time and time zone here) does not mean that you weren’t a part of my experience.  Your experience is my experience.

They share (those Kardashians do) because they want to be known (they want to know they are known – because they are).  We watch and we listen and reflect to better know ourselves, to better know you, to better know we/I/you/me/us/truth/love/aletheia.  Who we all are.  Together.

They share their experience of God, their religion, their truth so you can acknowledge the parts of those truths that they’ve experienced for themselves as truth for yourself.  Because the parts that are true for them are true for you.  Not conceptual truth – Aletheia truth.  The parts that can’t actually be spoken about.

They share their camping trip to Middle Bass Island so you can experience those truths of being family of being love of being human of being free of being fun and know that we share those things from when you have experienced those truths.

They share their political beliefs – the ones for smaller government and caring for those in poverty – to be known.  Because those parts of their party that are truth for them are truth for you.  Even though they appear to be separated by party lines or border lines or panty lines.

The next time somebody speaks to you verbally, non-verbally, spatially, temporally – they want to be known and they want to know.  Be the space that allows knowing and being known.  You already are – get out of the way and let (you) both be.

When I’m present right now.  What is present is Truth/Love/Aletheia.  When Truth/Love/Aletheia are present.  Right now.  The only time Truth/Love/Aletheia is present right now. Truth/Love/Aletheia allow our Truth/Love/Aletheia present right now to be present right now.  Experienced.  This is why we (I) share.  This is what we share.  Right now.  We share it so we’ll reveal that we share it.  Right now.

With Love.  Right Now.  With Aletheia.  With Love,

Ed

P.S.  If this resonates in your experience I’d love to hear comments on what the experience looks/feels like.  What do you hear and what does it feel like?  It’s meant to be experiential rather than epistemological…challenging etymologically.  Thanks for reading.  I love you.  I love me.  I love us.  I love.

Heavy Blog

If you were wondering whether or not I’ve noticed – I’ve noticed.  This blog is pretty heavy.  Not the sort of thing that you might try to digest without having a “tasty beverage to wash it down”.  All of the readings should be digested while putting your own life and own experiences before you to act as a sort of filter to read my experiences through.  After all, these experiences are shared and we make meaning of them together; you as the listener and me as the speaker or writer, in this case.  Together we can expect to be left somehow different than we were prior to reading/writing them.

This entry will be different.  Short even.  It’s sole purpose is to entertain.

One of the things that I found out about myself, during my training and development and receiving my certification in “Developing Leadership Through Emotional Intelligence”, that surprised me was the usefulness of my sense of humor.  Now, I’ve alway known I’m funny no matter what my wife says.  I’ve also always known that I’m pretty “deep”…one of the deepest people I’ve ever come across.  Deep also occurs as heavy.

At times when spending some time with me in an intense coaching session or even just discussing nothing at all I can leave people a little drained.  I can leave myself a little drained as well.  One of the best methods for quick rejuvenation and to move yourself back into the area of the Positive Emotional Attractor is a good laugh.

To that end, I leave you with the following “commercial” for my upcoming YouTube Television series – Survivor: Middle Bass Island.  Feel free to subscribe so you’ll be notified of new episodes, make comments (5 to 1 ratio positive to negative, please), and hopefully have a laugh.

If you prefer the facebook viewing experience, view the Survivor: Middle Bass Island page.

Being love present and experienced occurs for me as laughter.  For me the best times are laughing with my family.  Hopefully it’ll be “fun love” for you too.

Laughing Out Loud With Love,

Ed