If It Is All Truly One

I swam with dolphins… and I got stung by a jellyfish. If I move past my rational mind of Ouch! one hurt and therfore, it’s wrong, then both equally are magical and Divine. Funny, how powerful our minds are at shaping our reality. We hear, “Swim with dolphins…” and most of us are, “Ooohhhh, ohhhhh, ahhhhh…” We hear, “Stung by jellyfish…” and most of are, “Ouch! That sucks!” (Insert, “Bad, wrong, not good” here.)

How easily we go into judgment and kill off the magic in our lives. And I say, “We” on purpose. I include myself. How many places in my life do I make something wonderful and something evil with just my thoughts? Yet, if I move past my judgment, a jellyfish is a wild, magical, crazy phenomenon that astounds me and humbles me to my core. Well, that is until it stings me, right?

Why is the jellyfish, one moment, something that blows my mind and the next minute, something that I deem awful? The jellyfish has not changed one bit. Only my thoughts have. Oh, crap. Right. I am the maker of my reality.

Not that I want to go throw myself in the path of jellyfishes all the time, mind you. I am not looking for punishment, despite the fact that some of my actions might seem to point otherwise. I recognize that pain hurts, and I am not looking to sign up for that (well, at least most of the time.) But, anyway, you get what I am saying.

I am so often bored with how predictable I am. No matter how much I know, and how much work I have done and undone, I seem to still fall into the same traps every so often. Moments like swimming with dolphins while being stung by jellyfish are reminders of this.

For as long as I can remember, I have struggled with being born human. I have tried all different kinds of things, from various religions to suicide to being an alcoholic and drug addict to tools and practices from spiritual to science of the mind. I have done more in my almost 36 years on this planet, than I could have imagined doing in a lifetime. And yet, with all of it, I very rarely feel like I am able to transcend the experience of being ever-so-boringly and obnoxiously human. And then, there are all the ideas like, “I am not meant to ‘transcend’ the human experience, but embrace it,” and, “But the human experience is the opportunity to experience transformation,” and blah, blah, blah, blah… I know people rely and count on me to be ever-so-enlightened, but this is the reality of how I often feel and experience life. And those that know me best, know to expect whatever is coming through me to be what I talk about honestly.

One of the things I do in my life is life-coaching, which when reading this, seems laughable. The reality is that often times in a coaching session, I start laughing at times, that if the people I work with didn’t know better, they would take it personally. But what I tell everyone I work with is that I laugh because of how similar we all are. Our “stuff” is all so very similar–it wears different masks (often times in our very own lives) but at the end of the day it is just similar themes pretending to be otherwise. We like to think we are oh so unique, and at the end of the day, as individual as we all are, the saying, “We are all One,” applies to more than just the feel-good, enlightened, transformed things. If it is a truth that we accept, then it can not have an asterik after it– it applies to All Life, Everywhere, Everyone, and Everything. Damn! Not nearly as pretty that way.

So, I return to the dolphins and jellyfish of my mind and how I shape my reality. And at the same time, how often I feel like it is all pointless. So I look to create a meaning inspiring enough to keep me here… even as I know that I am 100% responsible for creating whatever meaning I create. Life does not happen for a reason. Life happens, and then the reason is what we make of it.

I have been spending time in Hawaii for the last week. One would think I would just be all blissed out–especially considering how much I LOVE being in the warmth and swimming in the warm ocean. And yet, for me, life doesn’t just pause and quit being intense just because I am in a beautiful place. I think maybe I am just not designed that way.

I have been longing for a home, and for the first time in my life, I have been longing for a relationship. I seem to have hit that point of wanting to root and nest and explore the areas of my heart that I have kept off limits for as long as I can remember. In some ways, being here in Hawaii, and some other things going on in my life, have been poignant reminders of how far I feel from fulfilling these longings.

And, trust me, I know, I know, longing for what isn’t versus being grateful for what is, is a perfect set-up for dissapointment. I don’t need that teaching. I have had it a thousand times over. I think, maybe, I am just tired of doing the work of being grateful for what is, even though it is not what I would like. I am tired of being “enlightened” and “transformed.” I am just in the space of being oh, so very human. And I am very present to how profoundly boring and obnoxious that experience can be.

And there is nothing to “fix” here. There is just the experience. I am both dolphin and jellyfish. I am both sand (stuck in my bathing suit) and gentle, calm ocean. I am both swimming with turtles and choking on salt water as the waves get rough. I am both sun and sunburn. I am everything and nothing. I am the space that exists beyond any of these definitions. I am the being, known as “Julia Butterfly Hill” who in one moment revels in the experience of lime covered papaya and in the next moment wishes I could disappear and leave this human plane of existance.

This is what I am experiencing, feeling, and thinking of in these moments. And it feels so pathetically uninteresting and blah, blah, blah, that I hesitate to post it. And yet, at the end of the day, “We are ALL One…”

So I post it anyway.

Here is to the jellyfish and dolphin in us all!



Published in: on December 28, 2009 at 9:48 am  Comments (22)  

60 Years

My Grandmother passed from the physical realm into the Spirit realm this morning. She had a long and full life. What I can’t help thinking about is my Grandfather. He and my Grandmother were married over 60 years. When I was visiting them a few weeks ago, at one point, my Grandfather leaned over to me, looked at my Grandmother and said, “I am ready to go when the Good Lord will have me, but I gotta stay here to take care of her as long as she is here.”

She’s gone now. They will be putting her body in it’s final resting place tomorrow. I am praying for my Grandpa. I think he is going to feel pretty lost without her. May Angels watch over them and steward them both on this new journey for each of them. Take good care Grandpa. Rest in Peace Grandma.



Published in: on December 23, 2009 at 3:50 am  Comments (10)  

All Things Pass

Blessed Solstice.

Tonight, I did my annual ritual of writing down what I want to let go of in my life–that which no longer serves me, and then, writing down what I want to invite into my life. I went out to the beach with my friend where we read what we wrote and then lit our pieces of scrap paper on fire. I called into my awareness my Mendocino family whom I have spent this time of year with and done this ritual with for many, many years since returning to Terra Firma from Luna’s branches. Although, we were not together in person, they were definitely with me in heart and spirit.

I invoked Berk and Moese, two of my Mendocino family whom I love very much, who are no longer with the living. And at the same time, I was praying for my Paternal Grandmother and that part of my family. I got a message today from my Dad, that my Grandmother is on the last of the journey of transitioning from physical form to the spiritual form. I was told she probably has one to two days left.

Interesting, how my last post is about the challenges I face with my family of origin vs. how close I feel to my family of choice, and now, just a couple weeks later, I am writing about them both again in this context. I grieved deeply when Moese passed. He was a beautiful, amazing person–the kind we need more of, not less. I grieved even deeper when Berk passed. I grieved more for him than I have ever grieved the passing of anyone in my life, other than my “adopted” brother, Anthony. I still carry a picture of Berk with me in my wallet. When I open it up, Berk’s face is the first thing i see. He was an angel in my life when he was alive, and he still is.

And now, my Grandmother is in her time of transition. I am sad for members of my family who I know will grieve and feel all kinds of mixed emotions. And at the same time, I feel almost no sense of personal loss. I feel like I “should,” but it’s just not there. I love my Grandmother. She is family of origin. And she was there for me in the ways she knew how. She knitted me an afghan, so I could be covered in her care. She bought my brothers and me, colorful monkey puppets that had arms and legs that strapped around our waist and neck because she knew we were very into puppeteering. She encouraged me to cook and loved sharing her recipes with me–her roasted pecans and potato salad were one of a kind. She hand-wrote letters all the way up until the last couple years when her health was failing. And, she was a rigid person in her sense of right and wrong. She was often caustic and negative. And nothing ever seemed to be good enough for her. Bless her heart. I love my Grandma. And I know she loved me very much. And I feel almost no sense of deep personal loss. And that’s just the way life is.

It’s hard to write about these things, but something inside me feels it is more respectful to tell what is true for me than to make everything seem perfect and pretty because life is so rarely that way.

When my time comes to pass from the physical to the spiritual realm, I pray that I pass in anonymity and silence. I would like to be the person who time and people forgot. If that wish does not come true, I pray that people at least tell the truth and be honest about their feelings and experiences of me– all of them, without editing. I will be dead. I won’t notice one way or the other. Why waste the opportuntiy for authenticity?

Here’s to life and death. Because there really is no separation.

As I see Solstice as the New Year, Happy New Year!



Published in: on December 22, 2009 at 9:12 am  Comments (6)