Tuesday, May 21, 2013

anatomy of a dream

All of the very best decisions I've made in my life were the result of a flash of an idea, an instantaneous knowing this is what I should do

Which is not to say doubt or obstacles or what the hell are you thinking? doesn't immediately follow upon the heels of inspiration.

The trick has been to speak out loud the idea, to bring it into light of some kind (ideally involving another person who then holds me accountable to my plan) and to began making movement towards the dream, all the while acknowledging but tactfully disregarding the gremlins of doubt who whisper a steady stream of reasons imploring me to cease and desist.  

Confirmation of the rightness of my plan comes with each step I take towards it.  A frisson of excitement and fuck! I AM doing this! mingle with the ever-fading gremlin's taunts. And then there comes a moment when I step fully and completely into my dream and the weight of any doubt or fear tangibly lifts off of my being and I sail forward into a technicolor Now.  

Growth and vitality and heart-full expansion are possibilities held within the seeds of such dreams.

There is nothing more technicolor brilliant than the embrace and smile of a dear friend received in the green of her world.

Leaving my job, embarking upon uncharted territory of self-employment (or radical self empowerment?) has been a disorienting experience and as things have turned out, I completely upended myself by traveling down under the next day after my departure.

It seems it was the perfect time for a new perspective upon my life.

Traveling to New Zealand (a bucket list item if ever there was one!) I brought with me wise companions whose words helped frame my experience (the following quotes are from John O'Donohue's Greenbelt festival talks):

An interesting question to ask yourself: How open are you to the mystery of your own beauty and the incredible depth that is your life? 

Behind every face there is something eternal going on and that's the magic ... no one has seen the script for anyone else's life. What are you doing to the life that you have?

You are a custodian of sacred thresholds on which you alone stand.


If you were to clearly explain to your heart how brief your time in the world is, what are the things your heart would make you stop doing right now?

What (or who) would you immediately embrace?


If you look after the hungers of your heart, then everything else comes alive around you. 

Every person is the holder of incredible possibilities ...


From Pema Chodron The Wisdom of No Escape: Navajo teach their children that every morning when the sun comes up, it's a brand new sun. It's born each morning, it lives for the duration of one day, and in the evening it passes on, never to return again. As soon as the children are old enough to understand, the adults take them out at dawn and they say, "The sun has only one day. You must live this day in a good way, so that the sun won't have wasted precious time."  Acknowledging the preciousness of each day is a good way to live, a good way to reconnect with our basic joy.

This was a week of dreams.  Reflecting upon the process of how I got from here to there, I appreciate all the signs - the excitement, the doubts, the anticipation, the questions - that remind me I am on to something big, something important, something that I believe was a possibility made manifest.  

An ancient master said, "I do not say that there is no Zen, but that there is no Zen teacher." You must trust yourself in all endeavors and have faith to put your feet in motion. (Karen Maezen Miller Hand Wash Cold)

Simply stated: I had a dream, really an inkling of a dream.  I trust in my dream and in myself.  I took a step - many steps - and found myself received by a beloved friend.  Another friend recently wrote me, marveling at that very word beloved which I had stamped onto a prayer flag for her. The one we behold, we love but what I hadn't thought about and which this other dear one pointed out is that broken down, it becomes  be loved.

Listening to my heart, following its guidance, seeking my beloved friend, I opened myself up to being loved. I fully and gratefully received that gift ... and now I dare to pass it on.

What journeys might your heart implore you to follow?  How can you take a small step forward today?

Not the end, but a new beginning (and I cannot resist ...)

So much gratitude for the generosity, the beauty, and the immense and fierce love that is Jane Cunningham.  Thank you sister for sharing with me your world and for fortifying my heart.  Not enough words to encompass all that I want to share ... but I know, you know ... deep in the stone ... you know. (to learn about Jane's upcoming and always amazing e-courses, visit her at Women's Soul Workshops.  Her Facing the Minotaur e-course has been rocking my inner archetypes  ... in a good way!)


  1. As someone who also jumped on a plane halfway around the world the day after quitting the job, I just want to say "I see you, my friend" It is such a beautiful, brave and terrifying thing to do to recognise the brevity of life and the futility of doing those things your heart would tell you to stop. I can't wait to hear what comes next. xx

  2. Ohhhhhhhhhhhh! This is so beautiful - everything about your journey and the way it came about and the pictures. My heart filled sooo as I went down the page - AND THEN that last picture: my heart exploded (into laughter!). I adore you, Lisa - you heart-open wonderwoman, YOU!

  3. i think i've read this three times now...each reading fills me more and more full. oh, that i had the words...


    i have been plagued upon by those who would manipulate my good nature and my open, loyal, heart -- and then i have been courted by those who wish help in the building of a shared dream, so much so that they would rearrange to suit me....hmmm....which one, assuming i follow the language of Love and Possibility, do you suppose i would choose? ;) rhetorical question, but your words here today have erased any guilt i feel over my impending decision....

    big, BIG love to you....xoxoxo

  4. gorgeous images & words...here's to radical self-empowerment sister! sending much love to you and all of your dreams. xx

  5. It fills me with such love & joy to see you two together.

  6. OOOOOOH I LOVE SEEING YOU TWO TOGETHER! Beautiful sisters.....swoon.

  7. SO beautiful and so wonderful and so yes!!

    Proud of you for your leap and so excited for you for the future! I am so jealous of both :)

  8. transformation inspiration and so much love, thank you for taking us with you on your trip to marvelous Jane's home.... L-O-V-E.

  9. This is simply beautiful...thank you so much for sharing these words. XO

  10. for one million plus reasons.... i . love. this. post! lis, you are soaring and trust me it is a gift to behold! xx

  11. I am truly in awe of your words and your life experience. Thank you for sharing your journey with us. Lisa you are so amazing and this experience will come through in all that you do from here on out, it has molded you, taught you and settled way down deep inside. I am so happy that you had this awesome life changing experience. I love your last statement . . . "What journeys might your heart implore you to follow?", I am carrying that right to my journal. Thank you sweet one.