In the act of giving lies the expression of my aliveness
When I found this quote it felt like music to me. I have been contemplating lately the deep place inside of each of us, where our gifts that we offer out into the world ignite and shine light on our inner purpose. It is in these edges between the moments where our passion lies. The more I listen for those moments of grace where I can offer gifts of love, service, expression, I feel more connected to everyone and everything, which makes me feel more ALIVE!
Recently I was talking with a very wise friend and mentor about the principle of making an offering with no expectation.The beautiful thing about the gift of expression in its pure form is that we send our offering out into the world with life, blessings, and love and then we let go of receiving something in return.
My friend shared a simple, yet profound example with me of her ritual of “Simply feeding the Blue Jays.” Every few days she looks forward to filling her bird feeder and she loves watching the birds curiously moving into and away from her yard.
She does not watch to see if they like the food, if they turn their nose at it, or if one bird devours the whole feeder in one sitting. Once she fills the feeder, she enjoys the pure exchange of energy and the feeling of providing sustenance for the birds and the beauty that they bring to her yard and to her heart when they come to eat.
I love the beautiful symbol that her story provides of listening to and noticing the ways that we can make an offering with love and blessing and then let go. In her own process, she looks for no approval, validation, feedback or gift in return.
She simply feeds the blue jays.”
These words have been echoing in my mind and heart since I heard them. I believe that all gifts when given with genuine heart come from the same place within us and they spring forth life inside both the giver and the receiver.
Recently I was fortunate to go on a trip to Kauai with my dear friend Tresa and an amazing group of friends and colleagues. We did a six-hour hike one day up to Makaleah Falls, led by Danny Hashimoto, an outdoor guide and nature enthusiast, native to Kauai.
Danny Hashimoto with Makaleah "Dear Rock Friend"
Once we got up the mountain a ways and hit the first turn, we came to a large, mystical bamboo forest, and just before the bamboo was a giant rock larger than all of us combined. Danny stopped and said that he wanted to bless and give his offering of gratitude to this amazing loving rock. I could feel the peace and reverence and spirit of this rock. I felt this deep sense of the ‘love in the land’ all day, and the respect and gratitude that Danny had for this mountain, the rocks, trees and sacred water falls there.
Danny hugged the rock and we all followed with our own offering and deep reverence and love to our “dear rock friend.”
We got to really take our time on the hike exploring the mountain, swimming and experiencing the falls. Danny took special care and time to gather, prepare, and share the natural fruits of the island, cacao and coconut to prepare us a beautiful offering. It was so delicious.
He put this amazing display together for our group with so much love. He is giving the gift of the island that he loves to everyone he comes in contact with. What an amazing example to me he was of offering himself and his love of the island to us, to the land, and to all people and, plants and creatures that he comes into contact with.
A Huge MAHALO to you Danny!
Aristotle says of inner purpose: “Where talents and the needs of the world cross, therein lies your vocation.”
Recently I synchronistically picked up an old book that someone had given me. One of my favorite books about living our lives passionately on purpose, “I Will Not Live An Undied Life,” by Dawna Markova.
She describes “inner passion” as:
“The natural life energy that exists inside of each of us, urging growth. A deep and natural pulse that tells us to live from the inside out, to reach in and reach out, for all that is possible to know, to contribute, and to receive.”
We begin to uncover our inner passion and purpose by practicing and aligning our gifts, intuition and talents with the needs of those around us. The more we combine doing what we love with unconditional service for others, we are creating a beautiful tapestry of passion and purpose for ourselves.
Markova shares that passion is truly “expanded and experienced in relationship of ourselves to other people, things, moments, the rest of our lives. It is hidden in the seeds and roots of what we love and become devoted to.”
She poetically weaves spirals of stories about quieting our minds and lives enough so that we can begin to hear the subtle whisperings that lead us to the edges of passion and purpose inside of our deeply rooted selves.
I was born loving to explore and search out new places, people, and moments. In the past several years I have been on an internal quest to uncover and share my own passion and purpose. This has taken much cleaning out of the dusty corners and looking into cracks to pick out small pieces and tiny seeds, each one sacredly planted and now growing more of what I love.
The more I dig out these amazing pieces to the puzzle of my own passion, I want to share what moves and ignites joy, fire and life in me, in the hope that others will feel inspired and will feel more love both for themselves and for their own beautiful, amazing lives! I am deeply inspired by the devotion, creative expression, love, service, and passion that Markova’s stories and words continue to create.
Most things become more clear to me when I hear them in terms of music, rhythm, notes or sound. I wanted to include one last quote from Markova that struck the deepest chord inside of me.
Our passion ”lives in the rest in the place where music is born, the fertile void, the silence between notes. It emerges slowly as a sunrise, as we search through our gifts our darknesses, our losses and loves. Our lives are a work of art waiting to be completed.”
Maya Angelou said, “who and what are you serving?” I have made a new committment to ask this question to myself every day. There are days that I don’t feel inspired…that I don’t want to give to anyone or anything. These are the days that I know that a smile, a simple hello, an anonymous gift of a coffee paid for the next driver behind me in the drive through… can make someone’s entire day. We can begin with simple offerings and then when we are planting seeds that grow and the energy spreads.
"Jenisis"... pied piper of joy
We all have people in our lives who carry an abundant contagious giving energy. I have a friend named Jenee who makes me literally want to jump for joy and break into laughter whenever I see her! She is one of the most genuinely loving, giving, joy spreading souls that I know. She is always sharing abundance and joy, and genuinely serving so many around her through inclusion, invitation, information, intuition… (notice these are all acts of turning in before turning outward).
She truly walks the walk she talks. I am inspired by her sparkly “pied piper” essence!
"Heart of the Desert" Escalante
The times when I feel the most alive and connected is when I am out in nature. The desert of Southern Utah holds a sacred place in my heart for the times I have spent there in stillness going inside and discovering my own deep places inside that hold my desire to give and live!
Jonathan Barfield playing the flute in Escalante
The root of the word “spirit” is the Latin spirare, to breathe. Whatever lives on the breath, then, must have its spiritual dimension. -Jane Hirshfield
Taking time out of our busy lives to connect to our own breath (our true essence/spirit) helps to connect us to God and that divine source that is much larger than everything.
I want to express my deepest appreciation and love
to the many dear people, amazing gifts, and echoing moments
in my life that have contributed to my own breathing spirit.
All who inspire me to sing out and dive into the edges of now
and in every moment to…
-SIMPLY FEED THE BLUE JAYS-
Preshie-pie sisters and sister friends
Mary Alice my "kayaking photo" sister heart friend
Corena Hammer (yoga mentor, friend and deep soul inspiration)
My loving and powerful dear soul sista "Tre"
My most amazing Dad, "Georgie" who has taught me so much about loving, giving and manifesting
My "double-mint twin Angela" and soul "Wes"
My beloved "Aloha Hootie Haws!"
My beautiful, intuitive, artistic, deeply unconditionally loving Mom, Jerilyn
My Dad and my amazing brothers who all continue to amaze me with their immense giving, loving and hugely deep hearts! (and my nephew Payton)
My divinely dreamy sisters and mom who every day amaze me with their grace and love!
The gift of Brazil and spirit of "the river" in my life... I will forever be altered because of the soul of this place and my Brazilian family there!
My little Brazilian buddy Leandro (Photo credit: Robb Hanks)
My marvelous sister friend "Minge"
Robb Hanks and Tyler Smith (two selfless friends who have shared much love and many hours with me!!)
My rhymin, soul sista "Karina Karina" who always reminds me of the truth of who I am!
"Lady Ram Di" and Luna my dear, dear heart friends and hiking partners!
"Brenda Boo" and "Haley Girl"... my ocean mermaid sisters!
"Brotha Chad" we are so glad we could adopt you as our brother from another mother!
Eagle Heart and Jonathan... Aho Desert Brothers
Pina Bausch (Photo credit: Pina Bausch FB page. German choreographer and life inspiration to me of true expression going out to move the world
My soul tree friend "Emma"... I sit under her and the sunshine comes pouring in always...
The gift of SOUND in my life
Sergio, Sylvia and my whole Brazilian Family!
"Steshie," "Nads" and "Zusi"... I adore you!
"Coco Lorraine" love love love
"Janey" huge, huge heart hugs
"Roo" and "Roo"... "I wuv" you dearly!
"Shree" you always make me laugh and feel loved!
Three amazing, loving women who continue to inspire and move people all over the world!
"Caro and Coco" fun beach memories xoxoxo
"The Healing Drummer" and my earth drumming friend
Three more amazing friends who have inspired my life and their smiles and hearts spread sunshine all over this world!
Marina and Marve (not in photo) continue to inspire me through their constant love and service to so many!
Last and wholeheartedly not least...YOGA and SUNSETS because they remind me to BREATHE!
Creation happens to us, burns into us, changes us, we tremble and swoon, we submit. Creation – we participate in it, we encounter the creator, offer ourselves to him, helpers and companions.