A Boundless Sky

Yesterday, as I set out on my way to join the NYC Group Breathwork Workshop in Chelsea, I experienced the mechanical churning of my mind negotiating streets, buildings, passersby, timing, until I felt the call to look up, and beheld the sky. My body immediately responded to the spaciousness of that vast blueness, softening and opening. My breath shifted, slowing and expanding. My chest and head splayed open like a flower blooming, shamelessly. In those moments, as I continued to walk, I felt the boundlessness of that expanse continuing to wave through my being. What a beautiful and visceral reminder of the possibility of spaciousness, and the interplay of spaciousness with the specificity of our lives. We are our history, and we are not our history. We are the specificity of our name, our birthdate, our familiy, and we are boundlessness, unconditional and undifferentiated being. Love and an awakened consciousness invites us to play along the continuum of specificity to universality, and know ourselves as all this, releasing clinging to any one orientation along the spectrum. 

The Hebrew word translated as mercy in the old testament is “chesed,” the steadfast enduring love which is unbreakable. It is not “strained,” as Shakespeare wrote in The Merchant of Venice; it is this vast and loving kindness, like that blue sky, that releases us from the restraints of history, and time. Emerging into the realm of mercy or forgivingness, is to open into the ocean of grace, a place that cannot be defined in rational, mathematical terms. It is the boundless sky, inviting spaciousness and oxygen in the midst of the specificity of our lives. Consider the power and possibility of this vast love in which we are held, even as we may perceive ourselves or the other as limited or flawed. Perhaps it is by way of entering into utter powerlessness in surrender, that we are blessed, and become the living power of love and mercy in the world.  I invite us to practice the boundlessness of the sky, coming to know and experience over time, that we are this, and belong to it. In this way, we can come to serve love in all its specificity, intimately, fiercely, and with humility.

The quality of mercy is not strained;
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest;
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes...

-William Shakespeare,
The Merchant of Venice

Practicing Change

“Damn you! Damn you to hell!” I was sitting in meditation as the rage in these words spilled in through my open window from the street.  First – a sting to my heart, a mammalian mirroring response to the heightened emotions that were unfolding not 10 feet from where I sat. Someone walked on down the street, their condemnation slowly fading from earshot.

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There are no edges to my loving now...

This spring, I almost lost my son. During this time, everything fell away except for him, and the incalculable value of his precious life. I, his father, his sisters and brothers, and his entire community kept vigil and held him in love as we watched him ride the wave between life and death. We were doing everything medically that could be done; it was out of our hands.

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The Gift Within the Gift

I was fairly ill throughout the holiday season. It wasn’t anything serious, just a mutating flu, but as a result, I saw my family in a new light, and realized more clearly who I am in my family. For the first time in their lives, my children awoke to find no presents under the Christmas tree from me on the morning of the 25th. It was the greatest gift I could have given them.

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Honoring Jamie Zimmerman

Today, I learned that a beautiful soul, Jamie Zimmerman, slipped on the rocky shore of Lumahai Beach in Kauai, Hawaii, was swept out to sea, and lost her life. The loss of Jamie is beyond understanding. When I think of our last conversation, and how I expressed my excitement and deep pleasure in knowing her and wanting to grow with her, my heart breaks over the lost opportunities of her young life, and how much the poorer we are by her loss.

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Dear visitors to One Breath Circle,

It has been a privilege to weave together the learning and experience of a lifetime to offer the programs that you see in these pages. I look forward to welcoming the many collaborators who will be joining me in developing and refining this work so that its power and wisdom will be of deep service in your lives and the lives of all whom you touch. 

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