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Post Election Poem: “Cross the Weld”

November 7, 2018 4 comments

We seem to be heading into even more interesting times now that the mid-term elections in the US are behind us. Change is in the wind; change is always there for us and rather than fear it let’s take solace in it!

I’ve been working on this poem for several days, even soliciting thoughts from a poet colleague, Zane. Today’s poem is about the “weld.” My most esteemed teacher, Martín Prechtel, spoke often of the weld and its importance. The weld is a frontier, a border, a separation. It can be thought of as protection; it can also be a barrier. It can hold people out and also in. Since the southern border of the US has been so much in the news during this election cycle I believe it is time to examine how we feel about borders, about the Weld!

Cross the Weld

There is a place, a strip, an edge,
It separates, divides, demarcates
The end of civilization, domestication,
Bounding, binding, keeping at bay the wild.

This is the weld.

Beyond the weld is a place, a world
Of darkness, creatures, mysteries.
It is a forbidden place of barbarian myth
Holding, hiding, frightening all trespassers.

This is the wild.

But, what if the wild is pure potential,
Holding, hiding, disguising the future?
What if the weld is not a wall, but a mirror
Reflecting, revealing the truth of who we are?

Cross the Weld!

 

 

 

©2018, Richard W. Bredeson, all rights reserved.

PS: Zane and I are having fun together. Watch for some things we are collaborating on that may hook your interest. I’ll announce coming attractions here, so stay tuned, especially all you poets out there!

Conversations that Heal: On Shame

March 21, 2014 Leave a comment

Shame is a deep and often dark subject; not an easy conversation subject, especially for men. I am posting this because I believe it is a very important topic and may open you to considering shame in a different light.

Rosemary recently had the privilege of participating in a Conversations that Heal Radio Show with host Susan Jacobi.  They discussed the topic of ‘shame’ – what it can show up as in your life and some ways to clear shame from your timeline.  I think you’ll find their discussion interesting, so here is the link to the 30-minute recording.  Let us know in a comment what you think:

Radio Show Link

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Dreaming BIG!!! – Richard’s Commentary

January 9, 2014 Leave a comment

How are you doing with those New Year’s Resolutions? Did you make a few, a lot? If you are anyone like me you have given up on trying to change your life that way. No, I made no resolutions, but that doesn’t mean I have no big dreams!

The Divine Feminine are spot on when they address this issue of resolutions, dreams, transformation and how to manifest the changes you want to see:

Where are you looking for your resources? Are you waiting to win the lottery? If so, are you buying tickets? Are you using the word ‘someday’ in your vocabulary of dreams, always placing that dream in the far distant future? Do you know what you actually need to take a step in the direction of your dreams?

You need Clarity, Commitment and Consciousness.

For me, clarity means “clear intention.” If we are muddled in our thinking, unsure of what it is we want to change, hesitant about reaching for the big goal, then the Universe can’t support us. Clear intention lets the Universe know our direction and can then offer the resources to help us realize our goals. This is the first component of manifestation.

Over the past few months I have become very clear in the direction I want the rest of my life to take. And the Universe is responding! Just as a trivial example of this, I received a book as a gift from a dear friend; it is Breakfast with Buddha by Roland Merullo. My friend had no idea when she picked this up for me that I have moved firmly back onto my Buddhist path. She had no idea that I am planning my own journey this year to return to my roots. Merullo’s novel and his characters have so much in common with my own life that it’s almost silly. My friend was moved by the Universe to place this book in my hands! (I’ll have more to say on Breakfast with Buddha in a future post.)

Now, I have studied, practiced, sat Zazen, read and explored in most ways possible this notion of Buddhism for many years. But I have never really committed to this path. This is the second component of manifestation. The Universe needs to know we are serious about our clear intentions. All of my past studies and practices, while I took them very seriously, were not true commitments to the path. They were exploratory, forays into the fascinating world, but with no real committed intention of remaining there.

This has changed. I am committed. My living habits are changing to support the commitment: diet, drink, sleep, dream-time, meditation are all much more focused, real, and supporting my commitment. Again, the Universe is responding to my commitment with the resources I need to continue.

And it’s really all about changing our mind, isn’t it? One of Rosemary’s expressions I’m fond of is: If you want to change your life, change your mind. Reality is after all nothing more than consciousness, the third component of transformation.  We all encounter blocks along our way. Most of these stumbling blocks, scattered across our paths, are mental blocks, maybe old beliefs planted in us from childhood. Much like the main character in Merullo’s book, Otto Ringling, I was raised as a Lutheran in the Midwest. “Lutherans don’t become Buddhists!” We don’t even think about Buddhists, unless they are setting themselves on fire in Viet Nam when we are burning our draft cards at a safe distance at the University! I’ve been changing my mind about a lot of things over the past 60 years; it’s time for this once-upon-a-time Lutheran to admit his true colors. Through many cycles of birth, old age, sickness and death, I’ve traveled the road as a Buddhist! I think I’ll finish this one the same way!

The Divine Feminine conclude: Dream BIG!!! With Clarity, Commitment and Consciousness you can live that dream!

And I do have Big Dreams for 2014. I hope you do too!

ROSEMARY’S INSPIRATION: Today is Your Birthday!

September 3, 2013 Leave a comment

Rosemary’s “Two-Minute” video for the week: Today is Your Birthday!

What Would You Do? Do It Now! – Richard’s Commentary

August 15, 2013 Leave a comment

I don’t feel old! OK, I did just move through my 68th birthday. By many standards this is at least approaching “old.” My grandkids think I’m old, but even they are polite enough not to say so unless asked directly. They see us in action and know we move through life with a lot of energy, a lot of vitality; good qi drives us!

But maybe these days it doesn’t require attainment of a certain age in order to get this message: “do it now!” This past Friday in our Qigong class the teacher, who is also an acupuncture practitioner, reflected that she was seeing way too many patients coming to her with a “pre-cancerous” diagnosis. A good, younger friend was just told he had a lymphoma; another good, younger friend just completed his treatment for prostate cancer. And I just scheduled a bone marrow biopsy to determine why my red-blood cell count is diminishing.

So, the admonition in Rosemary’s message: There is an urgency about the energies around us today. We each have a reason that we were born into this time on the Planet. Have you discovered your purpose? Are you clear about what you are to be doing now? If not, then that is your work today really does ring true!

First the “urgency”. I do feel this energy and it’s not just because I am in the midst of diagnosing a health condition and am surrounded by others going through a similar process for one ailment or another. There is a building sense that things are not right, that there is a potential building to create a shift, and not necessarily a gentle shift! Rosemary and I both have been writing in our blogs about this energy for transformation. Many of our associates are also feeling this energy. It is manifesting in many way, not just through disease. Many are feeling the dis-ease of our times, whether it is in the form of political, social, economic, or health issues. We seem to have come to a place where things our “out of kilter.”

Rosemary’s advice is to “discover your purpose.” And then “do it now!” And no, I don’t think time is necessarily running out; I don’t sense that my life is threatened by whatever malady I have that needs a diagnosis. This urgency is born of the sense that the energy of transformation needs a response. And the best response is in the direction of our purpose.

I have had my hands read by one of the best in the business, Baeth Davis, and by some of her students and others who have studied Scientific Hand Analysis. My life purpose is revealed in my fingerprints. I have lots of “loops” which means I am in the school of love, my lessons are about love and my purpose is love. (So, it’s not unreasonable that I would write a blog entitled Men and the Goddess!)

My purpose is to connect people in community with each other and with the divine. I am a builder of connections so people can experience and express both human and divine love. And over the years I have done this in many ways, through several approaches.

Since I know my purpose and I have been working at it, why this urgency? What is my lesson in the ailment I am being urged to diagnose? For me the message here is to remember my purpose and work as diligently as possible at it. It is more a positive reminder and a gentle push to keep going, keep building community, keep working on the vision Rosemary and I have for a Center of Light and Love.

Do you have this sense that the energies of change are breathing down your neck? If so, and I know many of you know exactly what I’m writing about, then what are you doing about it? Do you know your purpose for being here on the planet at this crucial time in human history? Are you going about that purpose as diligently and energetically as possible?

I second Rosemary’s admonition: “Do it now!”

PS: If you have never had your hands read, if you are struggling to know what your life purpose is, if you too have this sense of urgency that the world is changing and needs your response, then consider getting a scientific hand analysis by Rosemary. She is one of the best because she adds her talents as a Channel and a Medium to the analysis work!Click Here for more information.

Be on the Lookout – A Special 4th of July Commentary

July 4, 2013 Leave a comment

My Thursday posts are normally my commentary on the Mystic Message of the week, Rosemary’s Exploration topic. This week’s is “Be on the Lookout” (posted yesterday). But this is a special day, so I am taking an opportunity to speak about the meaning of today’s holiday. And as an aside, I had drafted a rather scathing rant about the state of our Nation. Then I got an email yesterday from a dear friend with a new perspective. So I significantly edited my rant. I kept the first paragraph, however, to be sure the larger picture is not lost.

The 4th of July, 2013

The significance of this holiday diminishes for me as the American experiment in representative democracy fades in importance and effectiveness. Money seems to be winning. The economic system has overwhelmed the political process drowning it in cash and graft. All politicians, left, right and center, seem to have been bought. Greed seems to be the rule of the day. Is American democracy dead, buried in a golden sarcophagus?

If so, what is left? Is there anything to celebrate?

It’s here where my friend’s email and quote kicks in (and maybe gives me a kick in the pants). Here’s what he wrote:

I want to wish you a wonderful July 4th!

Here’s hoping this Independence Day brings you the best of summer – free time with friends and family, fun and games, memories and leisure. This really is a special occasion.

In a way, Independence Day might be the most under appreciated of our holidays. While serving as America’s ambassador to France in 1785, Thomas Jefferson wrote to the future fifth President, James Monroe: “How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy!”

Jefferson’s point is not lost; in our affluence and relative comfort, we sometimes lose sight of the remarkable degree of freedom we have. Independence Day reminds us of how great our nation is, and how fortunate we are.

Happy Independence Day!

From my gloomy place of wonder what is left to celebrate I got this reminder. And then I thought about my other 4th celebrations and some of the corresponding expressions:  “Is the corn knee high?” “Will everyone keep all their fingers?” “Will the potato salad stay cold enough?” “How ’bout them Os?”

Life goes on. Another holiday comes and goes with a blink, a tear, a fading memory of the laughter of children having fun at a parade or gasping at the fireworks!

To a large extent we are free to live our lives and love as we choose; our choices are many. In the end this is what we celebrate!

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Walking Through Doorways

May 31, 2013 Leave a comment

It’s been a busy week! Walking through doorways of opportunity can occupy a lot of time. But when opportunities show up we have to respond or be left behind, at least as far as The Divine Feminine are concerned (ref: yesterday’s post).

My first door opened when I got serious about Qigong. I’ve blogged about this, my experience with Bridget Hughes for well over a year now, then my work with her teacher, Jeff Primack, culminating in certification to teach Qigong, and then launching my first two classes which begin next week. This is exciting enough! And yes, there is a bit of fear surrounding this; who am I to think I can teach Qigong! Well, I walked through the flaming doorway of opportunity, changed my mind about my ability (a long time ago I was an effective teacher of math and science) and announced my classes! I even have people signing up!

It seems that once opportunities show up and we say “yes” other opportunities follow. Last week I posted a recording of my message from The Other Side (post link). The main part of that message was from a Shaman Guide who basically told me to “access the shamanic world” more often. Well, I have followed this advice and have taken several journeys over the past week. And I have received guidance that with no uncertainty holds open a doorway of opportunity to get out there and do for others what I have been able to do for a few and have been hiding from for years now.

It is not cool to claim to be a Shaman. In the world of Shamanic Healing using traditional indigenous technologies that are millennia old, people don’t choose to be shamans, and when they are chosen they don’t necessarily walk around with a shaman’s badge pinned to their robes. If I feel a bit trepidatious about my Qigong classes imagine how I feel about this guidance to work with people using shamanic approaches to healing! This work is not for the faint of heart. I have a lot of training and I have a lot of warning that this is no easy path to follow.

But sometimes these doorways of opportunity, no matter how high the flames lick the posts, are easier to walk through than resist. And with that I revised my business card format and they just arrived fresh from the printer. Here it is:Biz-card-front

And the byline, “Shaman of the Heart,” is not a label I choose for myself. A dear friend, mentor and teacher, Baeth Davis, called me this a couple of years ago. That’s a long story but the short version is I have all loops for fingerprints which means I am in the School of Love, my Lessons are about Love and my Purpose is Love; hence the title!

I am standing in this burning doorway ready to leap through. I trust there is someone on the other side who has a hand outstretched to me to welcome me and perhaps even to reassure me. But this time of opportunity is not waiting for me. It is waiting for no one of us.

Are you ready to step or leap through that doorway of your opportunity? Do it; join me!

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The 5-Elements of the Tao

March 1, 2013 Leave a comment

I love the way the Universe works. When I can take a breath, step back and observe, I am in awe that everything works! From the micro to the macro, from above to below, there is such beauty and bliss. And I am particularly inspired by the synchronicity of it all!

I just finished my Svaroopa Yoga class with a good and long-time friend, Dharma. As always it was gentle, he is so calm and peaceful, the asanas were relatively “easy”, and I came away stretched and balanced. And I believe it felt good and easy because I’ve been practicing Qigong pretty seriously all week. Overall I feel stronger and my balance has improved! Tomorrow I am back in my long-term Qigong class where we learn about “spontaneous healing” and practice 5-Element Qigong. And to top off the week I am on my way to Baltimore on Saturday for more Level 1 Qigong Form training with Jeff Primack, founder of the Qi Revolution!

And the beauty, the synchronicity continues! I have been developing a workshop after some excellent coaching with another friend, Ken Ellis. I have been questioning for years what to present to a group of men to help us all through development of “emotional maturity”. I have been motivated by many of my teachers from Robert Bly to Martín Prechtel to Robert Moore, to name a few. An idea began to form through my 5-Element Qigong practice. Ken urged me on and drew out of me a fascinating outline for a workshop. And there my concept languished since last summer.

Very recently the true beauty of the Universe unfolded another lotus petal and synchronicity struck again. This blog, Men and The Goddess, attracted the attention of a fellow blogger, Ellis Nelson. Of course, I checked out her blog: EllisNelson.com, and there it was, her review of a book that fits my scheme beautifully: Power of the Five Elements by Charles A. Moss, MD. I read a few additional reviews, ordered it immediately and have been pouring through it since it arrived. It is a perfect fit, a companion piece to exactly what I have in mind for my workshop.

I will write my own review of Dr. Moss’ book when I’ve finished reading it thoroughly. In short this work is not only confirming my own thinking about the 5 elements, it is expanding on the material I have already gathered. Beyond helping with my workshop development, it is helping me, directly impacting on how I perceive the world and how the world perceives me! Not only has this book confirmed my element, it has pegged me in every way; it has identified my strengths and weakness, my blessings and my faults, my motivations, outlook and fears. It has had quite an impact on me.

For me this confirms the ancient wisdom embodied in the Tao. As I work with material like Dr. Moss presents, practice 5-element qigong, work with the I Ching, continue my reading of Taoist literature it all comes together to form a beautiful whole. This is becoming a true Way for me. The signs are unmistakable!

And the Way flows on and the Universe unfolds a petal at a time. My qigong practice intensifies as I begin training for certification to become a qigong teacher. All of the 5 Elements are coming together to show me the Way of all the individuals in my life. And the workshop I am developing for presentation this summer is flowering into reality.

We have entered the month of March. Here in the Northern Hemisphere signs of spring are popping up everywhere. It’s a beautiful Universe and we are all alive at an amazing time!

Blessings!

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A POEM: “Honor Your Grandfather”

November 19, 2012 Leave a comment

I have decided to begin sharing some of my poetry. Mondays seem a good time to do that, a good way to start the week. If you enjoy these I’d love to read your comments!

The following, “Honor Your Grandfather” I subtitled: ‘A remembrance of “A Day for Men” with Robert Bly and Michael Meade at the Lisner auditorium, Washington, DC’. I had attended this day, a lot of years ago now, in the middle years of the men’s movement known as the “Mytho-Poetic Men’s Movement.” I was very moved and influenced by this day for men. And I did then and still do honor my grandfather. As we approach Thanksgiving here in the US I particularly honor all of my ancestors whose product I remain.

The clear day was filled
With heightened expectations—
“A Day for Men.”

At the entrance we were guided
Through a side door leading to steps
Descending into the womb of the theater.

Winding through narrow passages
Voices whispered “Remember your Grandfather.”
“Remember the ancestors,” “Honor your Father.”

A faint rumble echoed
At the Edge of perception—it began
To resolve into rhythm.

Dark warmth held us, then
Suddenly we were birthed
Onto a stage amongst fifty men.

Drumming! Dancing! We were urged on—
Asked to dance across the stage,
To perform for the sea of faces looking back.

The short trip was filled
With tension—light, sound, motion
Blending in splendid cacophony.

Off stage, at our seats, we stood
Dancing in place, pounding rhythm
Of drums, hands, feet—driving.

“Remember your Grandfather” echoed
On the rhythm. He appeared on stage
Larger than he had ever been in life.

Tears streamed—“He would have loved this!”
Primeval sensation drove his body
And mine as we entrained with the drum.

Remembered days with him—the
Dark tavern—blue smoke hanging
Sullenly in the sodden air.

The bar supporting elbows
Of overalled farmers—fresh manure still
Clinging to rubbered boots.

The sweet/sour whiskey and beer breaths
Mingled with aimless talk
Of weather, crops and cows.

They laughed and cried, shared lies
That covered their fears and
Broken dreams—we laughed/cried.

The almost painful rhythm
Brought back the now—then stopped!
We had arrived.

 

 

 

©1990 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

Greetings from far away and yet so near!

June 15, 2010 Leave a comment

Hello. I’ve missed you. I have been away for too long but the away time was well worth it. In early June Rosemary and I married some very good friends in DC. They live in Maryland but DC allows gay marriages and Maryland recognizes all legal marriages from other jurisdictions.  I think the biggest hurdle in the whole arrangement was getting Rosemary certified to perform weddings in DC. All came off without a hitch; well, that’s not true exactly! The hitched couple is now on their honeymoon cruise!

Then last week I was in Ojo Caliente, NM mudding an adobe hall where I go to school:  Bolad’s Kitchen. The great hall, we call her The Lady, was built and mudded three years ago. The entire structure, a free-standing (meaning no posts of any kind) building made entirely of mud stands about 20 feet high and is about a 40×50 foot rectangle. She has to be re-mudded every three years since she is made of all natural ingredients that weather with the passage of time. There were about a dozen of us and we put an entire coat of mud (half agregate, half adobe, a bunch of shredded straw and water) about a half inch thick around the entire hall during the week. It was hard work but a labor of love!

With all this activity I have neglected this blog. Sorry if there has been anyone out there impatiently waiting for my next post. But the marriage of friends and The Lady come first!

I will comment on this week’s Mystic Message from The Divine Feminine tomorrow. It is an excellent message that we all need to hear and consider. It’s titled “Reach for the Joy!” – you may want to read it in advance.

Meanwhile, be good to yourselves and do reach for the joy!