dear Shiva, please bless me in these harsh times with the endurance & patience of earth;
the relentless persistence & generosity of water; the purity
& high energy of fire; the clarity & transparency of air; & the
acceptance & inclusiveness of space. i serve You through these living elements.
may i give of my intelligent light freely to all, as the sun teaches. may
i illuminate the mystery & wonder of darkness, as the moon teaches.
may i be a spark of encouragement & upliftment, as the blazing stars teach.
the sun, moon & stars call us to lift our eyes to the sky to be touched by guidance
& instruction from divine powers vaster than our human capabilities.
may i be a source of ever-renewing nurture & stability, as earth
teaches. may i be a source of circulating motion, ever including both
the lowest & the highest realms, as water teaches. may i be a source of pure
dynamic energy & enthusiasm, as fire teaches. may i be a
source of inspiration, movement, change, inquiry & detachment, as air teaches.
may i be a source of healing through the sacred power of OM, as space teaches.
dear Shiva, i am grateful that everything has the capacity to instruct,
as You have ordained for our continuing healing, evolution & wisdom.
i am not the body-personality nor am i the author of the
actions of that physical being. i am the observing awareness, the
indwelling presence ever abiding beyond thought, who calmly witnesses.
that which is done through the body's agency, because of the influence of
the personality, belongs to that entity alone. it is not mine.
i am the pure bright awareness enlivening the body: truly, i am
not of the body. i am ever free, ever stainless, like a cloud in the sky,
like space itself, just present, offering no resistance & no attachment.
now i am standing on the threshold between body-personality &
observing awareness. in daily life both flow with the evolving events
of the moment. yet the body-personality has many ups & downs,
whereas the awareness remains clear & steady, unattached to the outcome.
this is what i contemplate in sadhana, Shiva. i currently am a
fluctuating amalgam of spirit & matter. it's like that tremulous
moment when the butterfly realizes that she is in the chrysalis &
can remotely sense her wings slowly developing, but she herself is yet
vulnerable & powerless to act. nor is it needful, for creation
is unfolding & happening naturally, by itself, for all of us.
ah Shiva! this sadhana is on-going, a way of life, & i am quite
fundamentally drawn to it, attracted like the moth to her fulfillment
in the fire of flaming truth. i am witness to the blazing conflagration.
some things are just too precious & delicate to speak of
in human words. they wiggle sideways, squirm & slide away
& only the yearning to touch that mystic realm remains.
it is more real & alive than anything down here
that comes with rules & penalties. it has taken my heart
hostage & the baffled mind is left juggling soap bubbles
by the light of the dim waning moon, murmuring softly.
Shiva walks the burning grounds in clouds of dust & ashes.
i join my steps with His by the flickering of the fire,
& he lays a crown of soap bubbles on my waiting head.
i smile & do not speak. my heart is full. there are no words.
they finally fall short. i walk silently with Shiva.
nothing given in words lasts, but the heart can point the way.
You touch me with a gentle nudge of friendly tenderness,
though You express through the insubstantial & not through flesh.
i feel You nevertheless: Your signature energy, Your
fragrant spiritual love that inspires the best in me.
there is a fountain of light hidden deeply within me.
Your dear presence brings it alive with sparkle & color.
You warm the very center of me with Your touch of fire,
with your inviting calmness & radical acceptance.
there are no gazing eyes, no tempting lips, no shapes or forms.
there is love that feels like ice melting slowly in sunshine,
releasing into light the cold hard form that had seized it.
in Your light, Shiva, edges & borders blur & dissolve.
Your touch is like the delight of a rainbow remembered
for its extraordinary timing & divine glow.
it lives, keeping me company while the fountain of light
at my core explodes like fireworks bursting into flowers.
what wind unsettles the roots of my hair now? what fire flickers in this enveloping night? i cry to the origin of wind & fire: Lift me higher, wind, so that i can see more. give more light, i beg fire, that i may see truth.
the wind wraps me in its fist & flings me far, shreds my deep certainties & my doubts to dust. the fire burns the dust to ashes, grey & thick. i am clothed in ashes, covered head to foot, though this is not visible to most people.
the world does not know that the fire yet flickers, hidden hot in the recesses of the heart. i feed it with the focussed attention of the pure rapt child who has just discovered a butterfly rising from dark concealment up into sunshine, wings glowing bright as embers.
what wind unsettles the roots of my hair now? it is You, Shiva, You as wind, as fire, as a suddenly revealed direct perception. You are the light & darkness, fully filling my awareness until You are so vast that You seem like a field of endless galaxies.
were i not clothed in invisible ashes, no one could see me through the resplendent light of Your presence holding my atoms in place: Shiva, lord of my heart & essence of all.
as i write these words to You on paper, Shiva, i am
inviting You to be near me, to touch me with Your grace,
with Your compassionate way of revealing ageless truths
as if they had grown & blossomed deep within heart & mind
& only now could reveal their shining fragrant presence.
as i write these words to You on paper, Shiva, i find
myself feeling as if i sit by a wood-burning stove
enjoying the heat as wood is sacrificed to the fire.
we all burn with this indescribable divine flame.
it consumes our errors, making ashes of our mistakes.
as i write these words to You on paper, Shiva, i am
asking You to come so close that i lose myself in You,
so close that the meaning of the words "You" & "i" dissolves.
there is no more writing, no more words, no "i" & no "You"--
only now exists, only life, just this burning moment.