Love is a Field.

I open the door.

I see a sauna, empty space, hot air. Steam.

I step inside. I am going on a trip within.

I sit. I am alone and not alone.

The aromas of lavender, white sage, and eucalyptus spiral around me in wisps of smoke.

Sweat pours from my pores. I am here. There is nowhere else to go.

I wonder about going on a dark retreat for a few days. What would happen?

What would I see in the pitch black?

What voices, what wind chimes would I hear?

I drink the tea. I eat the mushroom.

My consciousness expands and contracts, beating like my heart, filling and emptying like my lungs.

Whirling in wondrous ways.

I am not sweating anymore, I am flying. I can go anywhere.

I open the door to the treehouse. Here lies the meditation shrine room. Inside, a great thangka sparkles from the wall. White Tara smiles down upon us. There are 10 Tibetan bowls of various sizes. Huge crystals beam their clear light at my heart–center. There are Buddhas and more Buddhas. There is Jesus and Ganesh. There are my parents, grandparents, ancestors, my brothers and sisters, and friends. There are my kitties and dogs and even beloved childhood hamsters.

There is my partner. There is our daughter, and her daughter, and her daughter’s daughter. There are gorgeous bouquets of tropical flowers, growing impossibly out of the stones on the ground. There is music—all my favorite songs.

There is love in the room. Love, patience, peace, and presence. There is gratitude for every person, animal, thing, and feeling in the space.

Love is a field, not a form.

The doorway to love is never closed. The master key is within our heart.

There is joy here and sorrow, and everything is alright—even when it’s not.

“Let’s not commit to a future together.

The future is so unknown, and we are so fluid, and tired of pretending 

that we know.

Our thoughts and feelings are ever-changing, uncontrollable, like a wild ocean of love.

~ Jeff Foster

Continue reading…

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December 26 – Seva (Service)

How did you serve in 2011? Do you plan to volunteer in 2012?
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In addition to teaching 8th grade English, I am the Community Service Coordinator at my school in Guatemala. In this role, I have been fortunate to connect with some amazing nonprofit work going on in this country at organizations including Long Way Home, which is building parks, a school and a community center in a village called Comalapa, as well as Safe Passage, an educational support center that provides food, love and education to children living in poverty near the garbage dump here in Guatemala City. In 2011, I organized many “Service Saturday” volunteer trips for students, teachers and parents.
I personally got involved with an organization called La Alianza (alliance) which is a safe house for teenagers who have been rescued from human trafficking. Along with another friend, I’ve gone there once or twice a month since September to teach yoga to the girls. In early December, we threw them a big Christmas party, complete with piñatas, tamales, cake, and donated presents. The girls’ spirit is amazing; though they’ve all been through unimaginable horrors in their young lives, they smile and laugh and hug us and are always so grateful to us.
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“Service is the rent we pay for being on this earth.” ~Marian Wright Edelman

December 25 – Milagro (Wonder)

Illustrate your own personal wonderland — real or imagined. What’s the weather like? Who else is there with you? Use vivid detail.
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“We act as though comfort and luxury were the chief requirements of life, when all we need to make us really happy is something to be enthusiastic about.” ~ Charles Kingsley

December 23 – Karma (Action)

Actions speak louder than words. What daily actions will you take this year? How will you begin your January mornings?
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We have so many choices in how we wake up. Meditation in stillness or in movement? Coffee or tea? Breakfast or not? Music or silence?
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I, for one, will be having a licuado for breakfast. (That’s Spanish for smoothie.)
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Like gravity, karma is so basic we often don’t even notice it ~Sakyong Mipham

December 22 – Sukkha (Happiness)

Where did you encounter sweetness in 2011?
Was there sweetness
In the warm embrace of a trusted friend?
In an unexpected home cooked meal after a long day of work?
In the park at sunset?
On the yoga mat?
 At the beach?
Within the confines of your own bedroom?
All of the above,
I hope.