Follow the Crumbs ……

Follow the crumbs....
Follow the crumbs….

Since 9.11 there has been a spate of reported incidents of people randomly seeing the number 11.11. You know the type of thing –  11.11 jumps at you from a page, a scoreboard, bus time-table,petrol bowser or a mystical grab of a digital clock at exactly 11.11. Chance maybe, coincidence definitely but for some it is happening beyond mere chance and coincidence.

A journey of self-discovery will nudge us with cryptic clues that are intended to guide us. Three words, Finding Your Voice, the title of my first book  had been flirting with my subconscious to no avail for several years. After all I had found my heart, writing was without doubt the imprimatur of my soul. I needed no goading no nudging into writing, my computer became my altar where running words in my head was given the breath of life from the keyboard. But during this past year or so the synchronistic crumbs of FYV have been unrelenting in getting me to see a bigger picture.

Sometimes things can be so blooming obvious that we are blind to them. But my muse was not – she was insistent that social injustices needed a commentary until words circled my head like vultures looking for a feed and only quietened when I found my voice through my Blog or a Face book posting.

Finding Your Voice, which I had chosen so decisively for my book of self-help guide to public speaking, was much more than a title; from the very start I could now see that it had been an intuitive directive for me to find my own voice. Yes I spoke in public but throughout my life I had always held back anything that might be regarded as contentious. But the paradox was any voice suppressed is under enormous pressure and when grievances reach danger levels we erupt. All of the stuff that I should have said in a reasonable balanced way blasted pugnaciously from me like a scene from The Exorcist. So for someone whose ego so desperately wanted to please and be liked it was a tough road to consciousness.

I understand now how each synchronistic piece of the puzzle fell into place knowing that finding my voice and speaking or writing it in a well-considered manner is inherent to writing with authority as well as being crucial to my well-being and sense of authenticity.

But of course the crumb trail of Finding Your Voice is still much more. Look out for my next Blog about how I can help you find your voice, your truth.

finding-your-voice1

Finding Your Voice was published by Lothian in 1985 and was promoted as the definitive self-help guide to public speaking. The first part of the book was the how to and the second half devoted to every type of presentation that may be undertaken by the reader – from eulogy to debating and workshop presentation to after dinner speaker. Now out of distribution it is available in public libraries and recently can be purchased as an E-Book on Kindle.

 

 

In Memory

imagesDo you realise that death is sexy? No? You obviously have not been watching enough daytime television. I’m talking about the surfeit of ads for funeral expense cover. Advertisements with symbolic backgrounds of fluffy white clouds fading into the distance of verdant hills and valleys which feature folk who provide us with a specious ‘neat and tidy’ sense of their loss.  The superficial scripting invariably shows an actor place a forefinger softly to their lips as they stare into the distance, indicating their wistful remembrance of their Mum/Dad/Aunty/Uncle. The lead turns to the camera, pauses momentarily, before they warmly endorse the benefits of the deceased’s choice of funeral plan or funeral home. ‘It made it so easy for us at a time when we needed support.’ Action: a clutch of a lace trimmed handkerchief before once again staring into the distance.

Advertisers like to shield us from real grief, after all there is nothing sexy about raw, gut-wrenching grief is there? Their spin is that caring men and women will not leave their families burdened with the responsibility of their funeral needs. The message re-enforced with the use of strong minded and active geriatric parents in rude good health with images of them hitting a golf ball or driving away with the caravan in tow demonstrating that although they live life to the fullest they will always do the right thing by their families.

The subliminal message from these spin doctors is that death is a natural part of life and if you have done the right thing and organised your funeral plan your loved ones will be free of the burden of responsibility, and hypothetically allow them to manage their loss more conveniently. While those people that don’t buy obviously show no care for their families.

Recently in the mail I received a letter with the headline ‘What would your doctor say if he or she could see inside your arteries?’ It gave me descriptions of four serious silent diseases guaranteed to kill me but if I paid $199 NOW (saving $101) I could save my family heartache and despair. Early detection is vital it said – the same message that is drummed into us with every other scare-mongering health catch that drug companies like to promote.

Yes we are going to die, yes disease may manifest but aggressive marketing such as this is simply causes the vulnerable to focus on the negative. We need to come out of fear and trust in our own ability to act on our health when we think appropriate, not because some company is determined to make its profits from healthy people who may well will be swayed by fear to buy.

Personally I find this type of fear and guilt marketing pornographic. Its single aim is to shame people about the depth of their love of their family. Fear and shame our powerful motivators but we know that love is even greater. I’m sure most families would reflect their gift of love in organizing the last farewell gives them time to assimilate the shock of death and a bridge to the processing of their grief for the dearly departed.

Come Spoon With Me

William_Archibald_Spooner_Vanity_Fair_1898-04-21
William Archibold Spooner

My Intuition, in a quiet moment, delivered the message that I should write a stunning blog or did I hear  blunning stog?

Spoonerisms? cue the chud, of course I rationalise, they have all the hallmarks of a fun blog or it should read ballmarks of a glun hog. After all how much  do I love to cheekily spoonerise when driving past a truck –  thats a trucking fig buck. Yes, I shout,  go help me sod this is going to be the pun fart of my blogging career to date.

The Rev. William Archibold Spooner, was born in 1844.  He was a not the most handsome of men. A very small albino man, with poor eyesight and a head too large for his body. Some wit might unkindly liken his looks as plain as a dobbers rog. But clever, oh so clever his mercurial brain raced ahead and his tongue could not keep up, especially when he was agitated and so began his art of switching words around.

When Spooner had to give the toast to the visiting Queen Victoria, he excitedly said ‘Three cheers for our queer old dean.’ His delightful gaffs spread over into his ecclesiastical duties, officiating at a wedding he was heard to say to the groom ‘son it is now kisstomary to cuss the bride.’

I bet his congregation flocked to his services in the hope they could add to the list of his slip ups – our shoving leopardsope in the hole and the list goes on.

Well tis time for me to shake a tower and chew the doors and so that’s it for my blunning stog – just swort and sheet. Hopefully

 

Regrets I have a few …….

alphabet-15461_150Regrets I have a few,  but most too personal to mention.  It would be a rhino-opic wallow in the muddy waters of the ego if I indulged these tales of remorse. But one regret that bares writing about and should not exploit the reader’s emotions is that why did computers come so late into my life to try me?

I have just spent three hours getting my old Apple I Phone to sync with my new very smart 7.06 model.  Am I talking your language? Cause if so I need you in my life.

The saga is too long, too complicated and would bore you but if I say old software not only on my computer but on the phone, needed upgrading, computer not compatible with new upgrade, phone in two different names …….  You, who cheerfully and confidently punch a couple of keys to fix any techo problem would know how to fix this  in a jiffy.

I learned to type on the metal rimmed keys of an old Remmington that beside ripping the quicks of your finger nails they needed the strength of Samson to depress the keys to leave their metal imprint on the page.  You could say  I am like stone-age man who has been given a box of matches and a packet of fire-lighters where all he has ever known is the act of rubbing two sticks together to make fire.

I am completely challenged when it comes to understanding how a computer works, the penny dropping moment of understanding is hard won.  In my defense I do try.  It’s just that I seem to come to the solution so tardily. We used to call it Sod’s Law in my day that you tried every way but which way before success came.

Still I did it!  I transferred, strike transferred, I synced all my data from one mobile to the newie. I can put the frustration behind me until the next challenge.

Then once more I will say but  not in a shy way  – regrets I have a few…….

A slap on the butt of consciousness – 3 Lessons

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Falling Back to Earth by Cai Guo-Qiang

Yesterday three lessons came home to me soundly, like a slap on the butt of consciousness.

I was taken to see the Illusionist and an exhibition at the Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane yesterday.  My daughter had booked months before for this amazing show for the family but her husband had to work and I was invited along in his place.  I almost didn’t go.  I was deeply into my enneagramatic #2 at this stage, the others-before-me emotional bolthole that I frequent. I reason I have genuinely a lot of work to do and don’t want to stand in her way – ‘Surely one of your friends…?’ I ask. She looks hurt ‘No Mum I offered it to you.’  There was disappointment in her voice.  Like Robin hearing the call of Batman my server #2 leapt into action, how could I let her down ‘then of course I will come.’  Where was what I wanted in this equation?  My heart expands with joy with the impact of live art whether it be a play, a show or a stunning exhibition and yet – I was as usual dumbing down my desire, work to do I should be at the computer face instead of out enjoying myself. The day was magnificent beyond my wildest expectations it renewed me, it filled me with inspiration and wonder.


UnknownLesson #1:
don’t deny your heart — grab each and every opportunity to make your heart sing.

The Illusionist Show was a collection of six magic maestros from around the globe all performing their signature magic art. I refuse to call these tricks.  Each illustration of their magical smoke and mirrors prowess so brilliantly conceived and delivered. The theatrical production of strobe lighting, three dimensional viewing and pulsing music filled your senses and each magic completion left you in awe.  There was talk from people in the interval about how the ‘trick’ was done ‘didn’t you see his hand up his sleeve?’ I moved away I did not want anything to interfere with my childlike wonder, like my grand daughters, I was simply in awe of the mystery.

 

smell-flower-summer-present-momentLesson #2: when you are in the ‘how’ you loose the magic. All you have to do is simply be present in the moment and you will be taken upon a technicolour joyful ride beyond your wildest senses.

The exhibition of Cai Guo-Qiang’s Falling Back to Earth with 99 life size animals from every hemisphere of the globe drinking from a large pool of sky blue water was in contrast serene, no music, no frenzied lighting no backdrops simply a steady drop of water to break the tension of the pale blue pool that rippled softly to the shore.   Of course we all read into it what we wanted, there the artist’s explanation and also in his gravity defying flying wolves exhibition.  We don’t all follow in an orderly conformist opinion even if we glimpse an understanding of the artistic intention.  Art goes beyond the creator and touches others in ways the artist could not imagine.

 

UnknownLesson #3 we each see what we want to see but if we are open and still to truly absorb, we see what we need to see.

And one final lesson: Receiving with an open heart is just as beautiful as giving – truly grateful for a magical day.

 

New Moon+New Year=Propitious Beginnings

Evidently the configuration of the planets coupled with a new moon on New Year’s Day makes it propitious for out with the old and birthing the new.  And if you couple this event with some sort of symbolic ceremony it can produce powerful results.

I have lost count of my swings of mood when it comes to New Year resolutions.  So many well-intentioned carefully worded I will be better, better, best slips of paper tucked into esoteric books only to be forgotten by the end of January.  And many end of the year’s cynicisms – no I never keep them so why make them – only to find the pendulum had fully swung the next year to sit with the new diary and my finest notepaper to write once again my hopes for improvement.

The trouble with most of my resolutions is the rigidity and censoring that I pen as my most desirable attributes for the following year. I’m sure this type of resolution is common to most I will diet and lose 5/10/ 15 kg (this a standard resolution for me repeated on all wishful thinking years) I will give up alcohol, carbs, chocolate and confectionary – I will be more patient, more forgiving – I will walk for 40 minutes a day and do stretches for another 30 minutes – I will be a better partner/friend/mother/sister – I will learn to reverse park better …. And the list goes on.

 Of course the dynamic new corporate agers would immediately say the reason they failed was because there was no identified goal, no time frame, no motivation.  No picture on the fridge of herself looking  a cool babe in a previously owned bikini or no image of her car reverse parked tidily within a cm  of the middle of the white lines.

But those on the road to enlightenment would say where are you placing the energy? The brain is not fooled it knows the ego’s pattern’s preferred tried and tested path for promised diets, exercise and reverse parking and will happily takes you for the ride through the well-worn structure.  Of course if you implement your will you might yo-yo for a while but in the end the old habits will prevail.

This New Year looks as though it might be a ball-breaker (according to the astrologers) so I’m working on a neat little ceremony to seal the my intentions for 2014.  But as I work towards the light I will give the universe every opportunity to do its magic by giving each intention its deserved vibration.  Instead of ‘must lose weight/give up the perceived evils and exercise’ it will be  –With gratitude I choose to honour my body and health.

 Not sure how to get my vibrations going in the right direction when reverse parking though – any thoughts gratefully received.

Technicolor Mind Chatter

IMG_4657I love a guided meditation where a mellifluous voice tells me to take a deep breath in… tense the muscles…. and relax….   acknowledge the grey chatter of the mind and let it float on by.

And in my mind chatter phase I remember I need to take the fish from the freezer for dinner and that the kitchen floor needs a good scrub.  These willow wisp thoughts float by before my mind tries once more to establish its dominion before succumbing to the joys of surfing the deep.  Why grey it asks surely beige would be better. Grey is associated with external aging but beige as in cardigan says more about the mindset, don’t you think?  I wiggle in my chair but Deepak Chopra’s voice is willing me back ‘focus on the breath, focus on the breath.’

Mind chatter is not simply isolated to a meditation practice.  My mind  is in a constant state of mental chatter and I have found my internal chat show like Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat comes in many colours. Let me share.

Hot Pink chatter is reserved for those  concepts that have a bit of verve, a peeve or a particular hobby-horse, anything where you feel a lick of righteous passion.  My hot pink state is so seductive it makes me feel I’m intelligent and I have something valuable to contribute. My mind immediately has  free rein to happily strap me in for a ride through the shiny worn pathways of  righteous concerns about anything and nothing. It is simply a diversion, a strategy for escaping doing what I love.

White – ah ‘white chatter‘ is barely a breeze of a blissful whisper when I see a newborn baby, see an expression of love or allow myself to be vulnerable and innocent. Instantly it grounds me in the moment.No wonder white light is used for healing and supposedly that dying walk through the tunnel to the light.

My creative thinking colour I decide is  green, flowing from the calming, nourishing green of my heart chakra.  Red chatter is for that moment when the anger will no longer be suppressed and needs oxygen. But ‘purple‘ that is a different story entirely.

The bruising purple will light up my neural pathways. Its chatter masquerades behind a sense of  dignity and honour. It is about being right and it is the most insidious of mind games that an ego employs. So subtle, the repetitive thoughts seemingly well-intentioned and thoroughly considered, so relentless till you take action.  Resolving  ‘purple chatter’ tension always  brings regrets.

What about yellow? Surely sunshine all the way……..

Relax, deep breath in let the grey chatter of your mind float on by.

Gone Fishin!

I set myself a 10 minute exercise today.My mission, if I chose to accept it, was to write a piece using my intuition as a prompt.  With  nary a hesitation, subconscious the hub of my life –trout fishing it is.

I grew up seeing my father’s coterie of small and not so small bronzed angler trophies gain more and more room on the dining room mantel shelf. He was a champion angler and with a special love of trout fishing and it struck me that there is a synergy between fishing techniques and any wide casting ego that is determined to take you down into the murky depths.

Trout fishing requires the right tackle, sinker and a hook.

Ego: The right tackle is a taken– a range of limiting beliefs coupled with a hook and a sinker that will work every time given the opportunity.

Trout fishing – requires a bait use either garden worms or a lure.

Ego: any pretty sly lure will do the trick

Trout fishing: The back eddies and quiet deep water are the best spots to catch your fish.

Ego: definitely the back eddies and seemingly innocent looking situations will often give the most rewarding catch.

Trout fishing: Make your own colouful lures to skim across the surface to attract your prize.

Ego:  It can create the ultimate lure, where the barb is hidden so well that it can hook you before you even are aware of it’s presence.

Trout fish: Before cooking you need to gut, skin and wash the fish.

Ego: Gut, skin and rub in salt for best effect.

Changing thoughts on being a 2

I know that I’m pure energy and that the thoughts that I generate have complete dominion over my reality. So I set myself the task of diligently observing my thinking and  I am beginning to understand how much brain activity I invest into negative or victim thoughts.

To give you an understanding of the canvas I am working with, I am a number 2 on the Enneagram profiling scale. This personality profile is defined as the ‘Helper’ or ‘Giver’

You would recognise the type as some one who has a natural empathy, is there in a crisis, or intuitively works out in a flash how to help/please/make you feel good.  Nice people yes because there is a deep caring there but the dark side is that we 2’s have a pathological need for your approval. We suppress our own needs as we give, understand and help but if this is not given the right approbation, recognition or level of appreciation God help you as the sweetness transforms into a shrew.   I’m in conflict as I write these words wanting to say unfair, unfair. Not me I’m evolved, my consciousness is awake.  I do things for the purest motives. I’m lovely!  Really Mary?

But with a detached observation, I notice that those poor little me, dark thoughts – Nigredo – will give me a dull achy type pain in my sinus area. I am sure if I was scanned while indulging in this putrefying nastiness, neurologists would identify exactly where the activity was happening in my brain. Thoughts of love, laughter and creativity – Albedo – conversely pulsate a blissful rainbow of colour and peace rising up, so it seems to me from my heart and suffusing my brain to match the vibration of the universe.  These are the same feelings that I get when I meditate.

With the Nigredo thoughts comes pain that pulls down a heaviness, a darkness into my body but with the Albedo there is a feeling of nurture, like the warmth of a loved one’s arms about you or the gentlest kiss.  It is all about softness whereas the mean manipulative thoughts are harsh, gritty like flint in a wound.

I’m trying to train myself  to identify that pain associated with the negative thought the instant it occurs, to act like a warning klaxon to stop the victim/the world has done me wrong  thoughts worming in, waiting for any opportunity to take me down.

Awareness of course, being in the present is route to consciousness. The path of being in the present for me is identify the pain or the joy that a thought gives me. Then I can use my will, to change the pain of the negative thought into a vibration of joy.

By transforming a dense leaden contemplation into golden bliss choices – that is true alchemy. ‘How clever I am,’ I think, ‘I could start something here.’  But Mary you know this is not new, wise men, the holy men have been saying this throughout the ages. So why has it taken me so long when I knew it intellectually? The truth is I, like you, needed to be ready to embrace this wisdom –  to make it my own. Frank Sinatra nailed it  –To think I did all that, And may I say, not in a shy way, Oh, no, oh, no, not me, I did it my way.

You simply need to get out of your own way.

There are thousands of  published authors  longing for people to read their literary masterpiece. It must be the same with any artistic work.  Artists hanging on the moment when their work resonates with a buyer.  Musicians who compose soul connecting music and lyrics  waiting for the disc jockeys of the world to play their tracks over and over again.

Losing You, my second book, is a story of a woman trying to make sense of her husband’s death.  It is a  story that shows the power of the human spirit in overcoming adversity and one that I know that will touch and help others in an authentic way. Each chapter, each paragraph  is  stamped with my creative soul that  longs to connect with others.  I have  5 star reviews on Amazon.  So why isn’t it flying off the E-Book shelves?

Is it the quality of the writing? Maybe but what constitutes good writing? Isn’t that in the eye of the reader? From all the books I have read and creative writing courses I have completed,  I hear over and over that a good story will overcome any paucity of literary capabilities.

We have all heard of the first book soaring up the sales chart, some of which have distinct critical merit (as appraised by respected and known literary critics) and some that are disdained by the critics and seen as a ‘would-be wordsmiths’ who have managed to nail a gap in the market.

As writers we  take these successful writers as our yardstick.  With chagrin we accept they’re  intellectually better writers  than ourselves or  writers  who are cleverer than us  not because they have any greater talent but simply  because we see them as reader smart. We tell ourselves that these writers are  better, cleverer, more worthy than ourselves.

But this is all rubbish. The truth is that we frequently, strike frequently, we regularly sabotage our own success. We say we want success and then bask  in a slip steam of self-doubt – not good enough, not worthy, not capable, not deserving and the numero uno fearfulness.

Is it any wonder our books don’t sell?

What we think we create – cause and effect.  This principle is no longer lightweight, it is quantum physics proven.  The universe does not judge and discount self-abusive thoughts.  It simply provides what we consistently give energy to.  So how do we clean up these negative thoughts to visualise our book racing off the shelves.  It is simple, first you need to define why you want it to be a bestseller and to be consciously aware of  those myriad of niggling, juggling negative thoughts that invade our neurons minute by minute.

From what I understand the universe rewards clarity of thought so with your definition  unsullied by negative beliefs you simply need to get out of your own way and focus on what you desire. Feel it, live it, breathe it and claim it. It’s yours.

Okay move over doubt. Okay already here I go:

I am the author of the best-selling novel Losing You. Losing You is not only is a great read, it inspires, uplifts and connects at a spiritual level with my readers.