Learning and growing with my knitting skills is similar to the spiritual path. You can’t fake it. You can’t pretend to be further along than you are. You simply must take each moment step by step, and earn your growth through your actual real skills and experience.
I am attempting to learn lace knitting. A few aspects of it currently trip me up, so that it is difficult to find the next project that will gradually teach me what I need to know in order to continue on my knitting path. If I don’t possess the required knitting skills for a certain project, I simply cannot yet move forward with that project.
I know that I will still get there, I will still be able to progress steadily. But I can’t pretend to be further along the path than I actually am.
This knitting observation makes me feel more comfortable with being my authentic self. I can indeed try to be my best, try to be kind and compassionate and a decent person. Sometimes my maturity level simply isn’t there yet. Sometimes I make mistakes. It’s okay. I am still learning and growing, still progressing steadily on my spiritual path.
Today is a snowy day outside, warm and cozy inside the house. I feel very fortunate as I sit with my mug of coffee, knitting supplies, a beautiful sitting room, a friendly cat by my side.
As I was growing up, I was constantly straining to impress others, to appear to be something I was not. (I didn’t know about my own inherent worth, that is not based on anything outside or anything that can ever be taken away.) The past several years on my spiritual path have been about letting go of straining to impress. That means, bringing in my focus to a sense of authentic personal acceptance.
Being my authentic self feels blissful and right, vulnerable and true. Whether it is my knitting path, my spiritual path (aka the path of Soul!), or Yoga, or writing about the mystical sense of life, it finally feels incredible to be just who I am, just in this very moment.
I began my personal development journey a little less than 7 years ago. The funniest thing is, I didn’t think it was working at all. Within that span of time, on my way toward improving my life, I developed fairly severe anxiety.
Today I experienced my own personal version of Bliss. It was a healthy, centered, grounded, clear headed, & uplifting feeling all at the same time. Not only that, when I went out to dinner this evening, my usual anxiety in small restaurants had disappeared.
7 years ago, I knew nothing about personal development or spiritual paths. That changed when I saw the cover of one particular book at a bookshop in DC. The description on the cover, not the title, is what caught my eye.
The actual book is called “Buddha Mind, Buddha Body.” But that simple phrase is what started my personal development quest out of nowhere: ” walking toward enlightenment.”
Interestingly, despite my awesome & blissful day, I wouldn’t use the term enlightenment. But on this journey, I have experienced many “enlightening” moments & epiphanies.
Growing up, I always looked outside myself for approval & acceptance. It worked for a while because I could fit in as a kid. However, as I got older & became an adult, I needed to shift to gain my own personal sense of acceptance & respect. The problem was, I didn’t know how to shift this issue, & my bad habits of always looking outside myself for approval had gained their own type of momentum.
What worked was always being clear about my intention, even when it seemed like I was merely trudging through layers of doubt, bad habits, and negative self talk.
This is hardly the end of the road. But I know from today’s experience how much bliss and personal acceptance I am capable of. I have tremendous gratitude for my life & my good fortune.
Tangled up in you/ with all of the phases I’ve gone through
the truth is a magnificent truth/ not mere fantasy
epic and proud with the music playing loud
passion and romance combining and igniting/ finally I’m seeing a reason for fighting
fighting for my future/ fighting for a chance/ fighting for a place in this
not on stage/ never that certain/ I’m up in the rafters or behind the final curtain
fantasies plague my mind until I’ve found/ a place in the clouds
or a smile flashed backwards from some crowd
finding love with you was easy to do/ not so easy to follow
yeah, to follow through
reaching for the stars/ reaching for a sign
straightening up my act so I don’t be left behind
imagining the pretty details like ornate gestures made with a lady’s fan/
but all my gestures come out petty and I stifle my emotions like a man
so many words but nothing to say
so much to make pretty, there’s no other way
Drinking wine by candlelight/ keeping ourselves up in the middle of the night
Dancing and loving and making things more/
more energetic than anything I’ve imagined before
Or did you think I’d forgotten your game?
We promised our promises and made masks that could never
look the same./ Forgive me my petty differences and I’ll forgive yours.
But all my dirty laundry has already washed up on your shores.
A few lyrics are pretty pleasing to see/ messed up differences and
then the meaning is lost to me.
The acausal gears, so a-willing to turn; the cauldron to bubble and those
dark aged witches to burn.
The planes were crashing when I left my place/ and flew out all my bearings
into outer space./ We need you to be crazy and we need you to care.
We all know it’s crazy to have such a burden to bare.
My soul’s on fire with the sharpest light. Acausal gears a-turning and more,
as my dirty laundry makes its case on a distant shore.
The spirits have flown and they’re flying around/ but you’d rather stay
out on the town. The sobbing has once again given this theater away/
didn’t you know it’s an epic play?
Write your own lines and strive to be more/ I’m swimming my way to that distant shore.
Dreams and hallucinations are showing their might/ I’m still here yearning
for a worthy fight. But the fight’s a fiction and the drama a bore.
And the giants are ignoring the stifled message, holding out for grumbles of lore.
Love, love, love with something to say./ You know I wouldn’t have dreamt it any other way.
Spider woman is a-weaving again. Making the best out of these legions of men.
The fields were all burned ages ago./ The corpses buried under liters of snow.
But the sun still shines, requesting a relapse. I’ve thrown the game,
like cautions to chance.
If I knew all the books and could rearrange the ages/ I think I’d still end up with
a few blank pages. I’ll spin my yarn and watch the flowers grow.
I’ll guess my way through those liters of snow.
The ghosts are speaking their message again. Don’t go swimming with the likes of men.
The Beats, those poets, were on to something grand. They anticipated my crazy
in ways you’ll never understand. There are songs to play and lyrics to write.
I’m finally ready to fight the good fight./ You know we’re all gasping for breath;
the pollution in the skies is aiming for our death.
But Mother Nature couldn’t quite be sure. She suspected we were actually holding out
for something more. So as the structures fall and the houses collapse,
I won’t be waiting to listen to Taps./ The wheel of fortune has turned and spoken;
no one wants to be your gosh darn token.
I tried to explain my view/ to the dumbest of them all./ It didn’t go well,
and still Alice continues to fall./ The music is playing and the stars have aligned.
But I’m that needle in the haystack who you’ll never find.
I sang a song for you and your people./ You burned me at the stake ages past
for the good of the people.
But reincarnation’s a bitch and the glimmer is a sign. I whispered those changes
that still haunt your damned mind./ Hope is the bird that flutters its wings/
And Love is the energy that always sings./ I tried to care about the critics who damn/
but I still secretly wished to be/ exactly who I am.
staring out at me from the cover of national geographic
eyes that have seen the depths of tragic
not so cozy afternoon/ swimming in the depths of the ocean lagoon
a little too much poverty/ a little too soon
reminding me of the will to choose/ images and phrases dance up from the pages
of the last civilization who never knew it
never knew the best/ only knew the worst
the end came and went/ without any notice
tragedy is bloody or tragedy is mundane
all are giving me reasons to jump past the sane
you don’t believe in magic and you don’t believe in God
the river was paved over with layers and layers/ of concrete
and pavement and unanswered prayers
my prayers came back to me unanswered too/ unanswered, unopened
but I decided what to do/ I grabbed the magic from the depths
of the flickering neurons in my brain/ to see how fast I could leap past the sane
leap into the depths of the unknown
setting fire to the antique furniture/ at least in some dream
we can’t remember who built it/ but my nightmares tell me/ we shouldn’t have trusted
don’t trust the traditions they hand to you cold
the same people who stamped your soul as bought and sold
1984 came and went/ plenty of horror and plenty spent
but in a pretty little town on the edge of the world
little girls were reading and learning to dream
you see/ my dream was the biggest yet/ with daring and adventure and no end in sight
I took the sparks from the songs I heard/ and walked past the edge of that forlorn world
you never saw me/ you never knew
but the Universe felt the shimmer/ and the Universe grew
the Universe grew once again/ past the prisons and soldiers and sad sad men
past the places where the women hide/ clutching their children and staying inside
the Universe grew past the stables where horses once stayed
past the fields where once the lions played
the end of our world came and went/ we’re better for it/ the lessons had all been spent
yes that was hell/ back in 1943/ all the bombs exploded and no one survived
but we’re all back here again to stay/ here we are again/ back in the play
the walls of the theater are larger than this day
you don’t believe in your soul or the journeys that it takes
but we fly just the same with our hearts and our aches
those tragic eyes staring out at me/ from the cover of national geographic and all that data can’t see
with blind minds and frozen hearts/ the river paved over and the bombs all sent
the end of the world came and went
I dreamed the dream I wanted still/ my dream came true with a sparkle of magic
I learned that life can be much more than tragic
Shakespeare’s house will be built up once again/ and my vision restored to that day I learned how to swim
and now I swim and I sail and I fly and I surf/ I breathe underwater and come back to the surface
there is magic still/ the Spirits live again/ my dream came true/ my hopes took flight
you slept through the darkest night
but I was awake and I met our fate/ I taught fate to sing and I promised fate treasures
fate climbed out of hell/ and joined our new place
I swim in an Ocean with infinite depths/ I fly through a sky where planets are inhabited
I dream and I hope of the best magic brings/ my vision is clear and my Heart sings
this is a tale that was unknown before/ you won’t believe it and that’s how I’m sure
the dream of Love is much more real/ than the end of the world and the river paved over
tragic eyes will see joy once again/ all the trees will return and truth will shine on friends
We’ll spike it to ya, cause we’re the ones who call out the ugliest
Never believing, never conceiving, there is some fault in what we’re perceiving
We will critique, hand you your list of errors, with dread approaching,
never dreaming that we’re encroaching, on your beautiful sense of freedom.
We’ll spike it to ya, with an air of superior “grace,” never guessing that we are
the ones with such mud on our face. I’m lost in this persistent illusion,
shadowboxing as they call off the season; I’m still morose with this apathy and confusion.
We’ll spike it to ya, with sarcasm and glee, hoping this is the nasty comment that will
put you out to sea. Never believing, never conceiving, that there is such fault in the ways
we’re perceiving. Attacking and defensive, sparring and offensive, offending the best and
defending the worst, all while showing off our account, our purse.
Freedom is calling, as my heart is sobbing. All of these stupid social errors have been my
absolute undoing. I had such a way of insulting you to your face, as I demanded a launch
into outerspace. It’s too ridiculous to be believed, yet all too true.
I’ve been lying and scheming, all the while forgetting my dreaming. I’ve been dancing to the
hollow rules of social norms, like a trotting horse always taught how to perform.
Anger won’t even be the proper response to such hollow and ridiculous shows.
Snakes, I’m told, peel off layers of skin, the better to inhabit the real one they’re in.
I’ve never seen it for myself; the wall between me and nature is a thick barrier.
There are conflicting stories about the snake. Religion says the snakes spoke of sin.
Paganism says the snakes will show you to that spiral path within.
I’ve been wound up like a mechanical circus monkey. Taught how to speak and how to
perform. Such a lot of nonsense, just an incredible waste of time. Such a waste of the
wild and beautiful world of Nature that shimmers within me.
They say the time is only and always now, that nothing good comes from anger.
Like a wise and sensuous snake, making patterns across the ground, I will shed the past.
It was a waste of time, at least it couldn’t last.
Traditions rise and traditions fall. Dynasties loath to let go, after it all.
I will break free of the hollow performance dance, break free of the
tretcherous trance. I will be free, and I will dance naked underneath the cosmic stars.
There’s a true dance that will unleash the wildest and the best of me.
Like an ancient Chinese lady, my feet will finally be unbound.
Maybe my anger can be taught to change into fierce wisdom.
I would have appreciated being taught useful knowledge rather than a history
of nonsense and lies. Sometimes I still mimic the mechanical circus monkey
I was so good at being in the past.
The wall between me and Nature is getting thinner. Now it is merely a cloak,
a veil. Or a cobweb that sticks to my fingers as I push through that barrier.
My lantern light is strong, and I will stride through this dark night.
Demon spawn, messing up the front lawn
Unleashing the images of my Psyche/ thousands of lions and monsters and demons at a time
You thought you could contain me/ Make me simple, stupid, and plain
But I am that Universal Force/ for which you don’t even have a name
Zombie girls/ won’t put up a fuss
they will simply wait/ until your civilization gets turned into decay and rust
Demon spawn, messing up the front lawn
the ladies of the world think it’s high time to create a little bit of psychotic mess
You don’t get to name me, you don’t get to contain me
The fury that fans my flames/ comes with a force of Nature/
that won’t leave you ever the same
Simple and pretty/ with skeleton lies
Hiding the truths that won’t really ever hide
Beauty won’t ever really be the same/ the psychotic monster within me
finally wants a Name.
The plain and simple Image will never contain/
those primordial forces of Nature/ that you’ve forgotten to name.
It was me/ as the zombies
And it was me/ as the monster
And it was me/ carrying the sword, calling out every imposter
Demon spawn/ messing up the perfectly kept front lawn
Pretty girls in summer dresses/ hiding every ferocious Monster
But some facets of life can never be tamed
You brought back so much from the wild, to be treated, you thought,
as a mere trophy. But this primordial force that can’t be named
will also never be tamed
These demon monster zombies/ won’t be tamed
not by anyone/ not ever/ especially not by the likes of you
You think you have everything figured out. You’ve decided what is
precious and true.
I defy the boundary lines
I defy what’s considered “good”
and every last thing that should
grow deeper and bigger and taller
This ferocious Monster of infinite size/
is tired of your petty lies
I’m a holy terror who can’t be tamed/
I’m wild/ I’m Free/ I create my own Name
The sewer erupted all over the front lawn/
The smelly decay doesn’t even cause harm.
Soulful and wise/ of infinite shape and size
Terrifying and kind/ at the very same time
I speak in voices that cannot be traced
I see the look of horror on your face
Strength and Power are my true, honest, and loyal companions.
I will no longer be intimidated/ I will no longer be afraid.
I am the spirit and the nature of forces
that I have conjured, that I have made.
…But on a lonely island with a hidden shore
I realized that I didn’t want to fight, I didn’t want to battle any more.
Strength and Power are the foundation of good fortune, safety,
security, calm, and contentment.
Women have roots to their Goddess Power.
Women are strong fighters, growing stronger by the hour.
I will not be impressed by your history of lies.
I’m not sure why our true strength should take you by surprise.
Brainwashed by the lies and the horror of “men.”
But this is my castle, and the fools should learn how to swim.
Away, away… Flee and go.
Retreat from the horror you created,
Let it all go.
I am within you, and you are within me.
Infinite patterns of interdependence that anyone
with true vision can see.
Your cruel jokes will never make me smile or laugh.
Your cruel illusions and lies don’t fool me any more.
What have I dreamed? And where have I been?
I dreamt a nightmare infested with the horror of “men.”
The Universal Goddess forces which contain
within them the infinite cycles of re-growth,
are infinite oceans of cosmic Truth and Power.
Don’t fool me.
You’ve gasped your last, at this “late” hour.
…With that, my cosmic ship/ sails for a different shore.
You won’t fool me, never, nevermore.
I see things much differently.
I have a vision of my own type of
The false dynasty is crumbling and falling away.
You can’t even afford to stay.
Flee, flee… go and run.
I conquer the skies, the moon, and the sun.
Your last hour came and went.
Crumbling and decaying,
My anger knows no bounds/ the rage and the fury/ will not be extinguished
Forget those pretty sounds/ the mighty, ferocious monster will not be appeased
When you’re in the dark/ on your knees/ begging for the light
of day/ when you’re on the floor in the dirt/ the anger still won’t go away
Peeling off layers of sickness and hurt.
Burying bodies in the dirt.
Saying what I need to say.
The sun won’t shine any other way.
Shedding layers of sickness and death.
Having my day, in the dark basement.
Climbing the stairs out of that dismal waste.
Ignoring the phantoms who beg me to stay
…where screaming voices hardly make a sound.
Skeletons dance to feel their purity/ Finally skinny enough to stop feeling so dirty
But I’ve seen those bones before
When they were buried straight underground
Where screams won’t make a sound.
Ghosts and phantoms will never reveal/ the sparkling energy that it takes to heal
Asking for directions out of this place, Asking those who will lie to your face.
I planned a death to heal my own, but woke up to realize that death still hasn’t freed me.
Hate is such a fiery thing. But it lit the fires and taught me how to sing.
We were all orphans from the start, which is the kind of thing
that never fails to break my Heart.
I tried so hard to save myself. I tried so hard to climb out of this pit, out of this hell. Only faking my own death would work to escape.
Only foolish wisdom could ever replace that much hate.
Trapped on the flip side of a David Lynch movie. That dark underground, that family tragedy.
I dreamed of death as I walked away. Anything less than pure Freedom has always been too huge a price to pay.
I send you blessings as you crawl out of your own hell.
That private prison where the ghosts know you so well.
“Love and Peace and Video Games.” A happy home that steals a new name.
Gushing about my happy Heart.
Pleasant dreams for a work of Art.
Place my belongings in a row. Bless my path before I go. Turn around and be dizzy still. Wandering and seeking out that mountain to climb.
I’m still alive, and I will be mine.
I will be mine, be my own thing.
Teaching my Heart and my Soul how to sing.
Bless me and send me on my way.
There was never any price to pay.
Crawling out of hellish pits. Something in my strong Soul will never let me
Insults conjured out of the depths of a bleeding wound, the one that hasn’t healed yet.
Believe me when I tell my truth.
I won’t be deceived by the blind fools, who hover over fresh graves and speak in hushed tones.
Always lying to keep the noise of their own guilt down.
I walked out of that pit, that hell. Never knowing how things could ever
turn out so well.
Turn away and leave my Heart bleeding
Alway lying, Always deceiving
Dizzy turns around the floor
Sweet ecstasy finally opening a new door.
Make your plans and check your list
Walking out of hell is, obviously, a one way trip.
I spewed that filth like a twisted demon, those fiends who never listen to reason.
Was that a truth that you lied about?
Your silence and your whispers only made me scream.
Spewing the contents of a dying dream.
You’ll never get to kill me now. It turns out that you don’t know how.
But we know you tried.
Sweet Heart, demon dance. Open Heart, dream and trance.
Anger and Rage with an infinite span.
But you’ll never get to tell me who I am.
Hatred like a fiery grave/ dancing skeleton demons
who refuse to be saved.
Lies will spin the wool that hides/ sheep and wolves and lions and goats.
You’ve taken pity on the impoverished fools. The ones who make and break the rules.
The storm clouds cover over my Brain. It was raining on that day when I gave up sane.
Forgiveness is not a petty thing. Pity isn’t the voice from which Angels sing.
My fury never knows any bounds. But it’s equaled by Compassion, plus
the fiery hell hounds.
The sheep and the wolves and the lions and the goats. Herded by hell hounds
across a dangerous sea. Those waters have never seen the likes of me.
I earned my ticket to the other side. Forever more, I won’t need to hide.
Steel is created at deep, rich temperatures. The degrees of heat that leave nothing
Pianos are made out of that unbreakable steel.
And with that, a path is revealed. With that, I have composed the tune
that I will sing to myself, on how to Heal.
Falling through that infinite space.
The void that erases the reflection of your face.
We’re all prideful demons here.
Begging for an entrance to a paradise, a Haven.
But paradise wants us to put down our weapons,
and we would never give them up.
Paradise wants us to give up our fury,
and we could never do that.
Paradise may want the story to be made prettier. But demons can hardly stand lies.
We are the demons whose damaged Hearts have been calloused over a thousand times.
And with that, another new doorway appears.
An archway that does not merely separate Heaven and Hell.
That would be too simple.
I remember taking up the sword. It was once a worthy cause,
this dreamful, deathless fight.