Morgana’s Riff, Rant and High Dream

Morgana’s Riff…Rant…High Dream !

OK, first let’s soar….

 
I am seriously looking for playmates, a team of wizards, more playful project partners eager to enter undiscovered zones of play, fun, move the world to laughter/tears, inspired by “the where no one has gone before” factor!
 
It all started with a “kids-stuff” cartooning class for ages 9-16 yr. olds that I signed up for (the only adult to do so, sadly) at the local community college. Why? Because all the adult so-called summer fun classes offered boredom, or business or how to join the exercise grind, promising a new you in a new size 6 swimsuit (ok, a moderate exaggeration); however, fun and laughs were not high value for whomever wrote the class descriptions.
So, I went to the kids section where words like imagination and creativity and ‘find your inner cartoon self ‘ offered life, zest, dazzle.
Little did I know that Eric Teitelbaum, Pink Panther creator-cartoonist and frequent cartoon master for the New Yorker was teaching the all day “how to wake up” your cartoon alter-ego and see life with a pinkish pantherish tint.
It was fun. I enjoyed a man who said things like: “first, look at the real life situation, any real life situation such as looking at two gas pumps. One pump says Regular and the other says Super. Now change something to make it funny. Well, we came up with Regular and Diet or Regular and Vegan and the laughter started.
The shared pearl was that one does not have to be a cartoonist to begin looking for the humor ‘change’ in the every day. (A “pink-tinted attitude that has served the Panther well!)
Perhaps there’s a cartoon lurking for boring summer class catalogues. What humorous change could I make? hmmm…
Eyeglasses for the Odd and Unusual
Eric Teitelbaum works with his brother Bill.  They are a creative duo going off to their own studio at MGM or wherever each day to kick ideas around, look at world events, sketch a thousand drafts while asking themselves how Pink Panther might see the situation or some gal in a New Yorker cartoon.  They work together and this makes for a sustainable fresh creativity using the power of two or more; voila, genius has a foothold.
I was jealous, forlorn, envious just listening to this. I thought of other creative duos like Julie Andrews and her daughter writing children’s books, or comedy teams coming up with skits and improv ideas to make the rest of us laugh or Joan Rivers even, teaming up with her daughter. (well, not so much, but still……)
I thought of feisty, charmingly controlling, wired Elly, in the animated movie “UP” who at about age 4 imagined an entire life of creative adventure and then set off to find one kindred spirit, Carl, to round out this dynamic duo. I’d like a few more kin, but one is also good!!
Elly in all her Glory!

Elly in all her Glory!

Bottomline:  I am so over the solo creative act and… I decided to tell all of you this in case others are having similar yearnings and bottomless burnout looking for kindred upbeat souls with whom to share life, eager to find the play in whatever shows up and the humor in what is not so playful.
My high dream?
 To discover, invent, stage a coup or co-establish a women’s home-place; call it a House of Women, a Femyard, a pod or a brood, whatever… all deliciously diverse, mostly over 50 yrs of age, who want to experience a shared story where we write, produce, and direct a life of creative energy.  Some live there full time and others travel from far and wee as itinerant members of the community bringing fresh perspectives and loads of affectionate sharing.
All creativity is welcome in our Femyard and we are so dazzled by all the experiences we are envisioning and creating that there is just no time for anything but “seeking a softness in the world” *** in our own backyard.
And…just like in the rules that govern improv theater, all residential players lead with a “yes, and…..” meaning we buoy one another up, we keep the action of our lives going by always adding to the scene and never allowing the ‘no’/negative to take over or stop the action!
Our mantra: THRIVE, Women, THRIVE!
*** The poem about ‘softness in the world’ is  here .  It had such an incredible response that it ended up in a magazine for writer’s/artists and even found its way to people internationally…..why? because it touched a nerve of truth and yearning for infusing life with life; a ‘miracle gro’ for the creative spirit!
My next step in this quest?
 I am going to Europe in the Fall to visit the homeplaces of the Beguines, communities of women who thrived predominantly in the 12th-16th centuries. They were writers, weavers, artists, healers and spiritual mystics with an entrepreneurial spirit that helped them care for one another and co-create an artful engaging life for their time.
 “Listen up and be inspired by their legacy”, the muses whisper to me.
 Perhaps seeds will be sown on my journey, calling kindred spirits to join me in “living in the spirit of the Beguines”, a seriously humorous contemporary sisterhood!
Now, there’s an idea for a cartoon strip!

Hillary Clinton Throws Sanity and a Wrench Into ‘Politics As Usual’!

Shift Your Dimension, It Becomes You!

Shift Your Dimension, It Becomes You!

 

It was reported this week that Hillary Clinton tossed her sanity into the ring and joined the legions of men racing for the top spot in American government continuing to believe it to be a ‘seat of power’.

 

Having undergone an awakening to the forces of Light during her recent sabbatical from Washington, Hillary is now turning the art of campaigning on its head!

 

Speaking from her campaign headquarters, the Light House, she outlined a protocol for high frequency governing following talks with ‘The Trinity’, her carefully selected team of advisors charged with setting the tone for her campaign agenda and post-election win.

 

The team composed of Rumi, the Persian populist, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, scientist, visionary, and lead facilitator for Cabinet post selections, and Virginia Woolf, writer and truth teller, championing the global perspective on 21st century leadership, provided the content for today’s news conference.

 

Hillary began by outlining the domestic agenda formulated by Rumi. He advised that a successful campaign must:

  • Skip stops at mean-spirited roadhouses and concentrate on the field beyond right-doing and wrong-doing’.
  • Conduct morning briefings when ‘the two worlds touch and the breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you. The door is round and open, he counseled. Don’t go back to sleep’!
  • Embrace a policy of: ‘come again, please, come again, whoever you are… religious, infidel, heretic or pagan. This door is open to all. Come, come as you are’.
  • Remind the country that ‘reeds make a useful mat when woven together, but blow away when on their own’.

nasruddin 2 donkey

In answer to a journalist’s question concerning the make-up of the cabinet after she is elected, Hillary nodded warmly to Teilhard de Chardin and stated that:

 “There is an almost sensual longing for communion with others who have a larger vision. The immense fulfillment of the friendships between those engaged in furthering the evolution of consciousness has a quality almost impossible to describe”.

Regarding her global sense of things, Hillary referred to her talks with team member, Virginia Woolf and their shared dedication to a borderless state of mind. Hillary stated that: “As a woman, I have no country. As a woman, I want no country. As a woman, my country is the whole world.”

 

A news anchor for a large Washinton media outlet asked Ms. Clinton to sum up her thoughts on middle class economic concerns. Her retort that “the lamp in the spine does not light on beef and prunes!” was a source of confusion for some and an en-lightened moment for others.

 

Of course, Hillary was unable to end the news briefing without the question being raised about her current views on the state of the Congress.

 

Addressing both Houses directly, Ms. Clinton looked straight into the cameras and launched her most impassioned comments of the day.

I quote :

“You are loquacious and mendacious,

pompous and predatory.

You have prattled and preened

until nothing’s as it seems,

and we’ve had enough,

enough of this stuff!”

With that, her team of advisors ushered Hillary out of the Light House and into a waiting van enroute to her next stop on the campaign trail.

 

She was heard calling ‘namaste’ to the crowd.

 Wonky Toothed woman

Morgana Morgaine’s Newsletter Archive: Never a Graveyard, Always a Hot Bed of Inspiration!

 http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs189/1102959881227/archive/1119987334574.html

In Praise of the Wild God While Praising the Year of the Horse!


I invite you to Raise Windhorse in this Year of the Horse (January 31). 

Embrace it as your North Star to guide your path. Let it be a messenger from the god-stuff helping you to  access pure “horse power” this year.

 Windhorse is a Tibetan symbol for raising the positive divine wind that comes from being completely present and awake!

 It is a representation of chi, prana, the life force energy that animates the whole of the Universe.  The symbol of  horse represents stability and the sure-footed balance required to ride the divine wind and stay in the saddle!

Windhorrse says: “Ride the energy of your life….but…..know that your life is more than you.  Be aware that there are threads that hold all of us together in some kind of cosmic kinship group; a necessity for shaping totally new worlds together.

Be smitten with Windhorse because it is visceral. It is a wildly erotic animal and a structural beauty. It represents the power of action, but not as we normally interpret action, namely: “doing doing doing”.  It is more the” wu-wei-wu” of Asian philosophy: the “doing without doing”.

Power of Action encoded in Sacred Geometry

Power of Action encoded in Sacred Geometry
http://www.janosh-art.com/

 

This is a year of movement and movement requires a light load so once again “get out the dumpster”, and let it rip: all the stuff–the old thoughtforms, the old language, the old expectations and assumptions, the stuff that clutters your creative space/home; it’s all motion now; morph or pass away.

I think we humans need a companion for this journey in 2014; a wild god who does not promise certainty, but does offer a consistent wisdom that says: let go, let go, let it all go!

So, in honor of the Year of the Horse, I offer you the poetry of two men who celebrate the wild god and who give a masterful insight into what it means to embrace wildness and unpredictability.

Hafiz, 14th century Persian poet seems to best capture this wild god by shattering pretty words and images that we associate with the holy and Tim Hirons, a contemporary poet imagines god as  a “messy” unrefined guest, shocking us from comfortable beliefs.

 

 “I would not want all my words

To parade around this world

In pretty costumes,

So, I will tell you something

Of the barroom view of love.

Love is grabbing hold of the great lion’s mane

And wrestling & rolling deep into existence

While the Beloved gets rough

And begins to maul you alive.

True love, my dear, is putting an ironclad grip

Upon the sore, swollen balls

Of a divine rogue elephant

And not having the good fortune to die.”

(Hafiz)

and if this is not enough, try this…….

Love wants to reach out and manhandle us,

Break all our teacup talk of god.

If you had the courage and could give the Beloved his choice,

Some nights, he would just drag you around the room by your hair,

Ripping from your grip all those toys in the world

That bring you no joy.

Love sometimes gets tired of speaking sweetly

And wants to rip to shreds

All your erroneous notions of truth

That make you fight within yourself, dear one,

And with others,

Causing the world to weep

On too many fine days.

God wants to manhandle us,

lock us inside of a tiny room with himself

And practice his dropkick.

The Beloved sometimes wants

To do us a great favor:

Hold us upside down

And shake all the nonsense out.

But when we hear

He is in such a “playful drunken mood”

Most everyone I know

Quickly packs their bags and hightails it

Out of town!”

(Hafiz)

Tim Hirons, poet:

“Sometimes a wild god comes to the table.
He is awkward and does not know the ways
Of porcelain, of fork and mustard and silver.
His voice makes vinegar from wine.

When the wild god arrives at the door,
You will probably fear him.
He reminds you of something dark
That you might have dreamt,
Or the secret you do not wish to be shared.”

READ THE REST HERE!

Practice ‘Remote Viewing’ the Very Best of Who We Are!

“In the starry expanse that has no dwellings: forces of the universe, interior virtues, harmonious union of earth and heaven that delights the mind and the ear and the eye, that offers an attainable ideal to all wise men and a visible splendor to the beauty of the soul.”
Hypatia
(From a dramatic work by Leconte de Lisle, 1857)

I wake up at 2AM, often, with a thought, an image or a gut squeeze of some sort related usually to some insane world (read American) event. 

This past week, it was a haunting image from the movie Agora the film detailing the life of Hypatia, scientist, teacher and astronomer in the late 4th century.  This was the time of the great library in Alexandria and the time when Jew, Pagan, and Christian were frantically trying to redefine the world “in their own image”, violently, little different from today.  Now that’s a chilling observation!

In the movie, an image is repeated over and over until its significance begins to sink in.  The Earth is  suspended in the vastness of space and we the observers, looking from afar, clearly hear only the voices of anger, screams of war and the agonizing torture preceding death; sounds resounding throughout the Universe.  Nothing else emanates from our home,  just vibrational waves of war, hatred and chaos.

The rest of the Universe is remarkably silent, reverential, in contrast.

Needless to say, this is an extraordinary way to get something across that we never think about or imagine; this disruptive signature of who we seem to be.

 

 Now, the good news is that a wonderful “what if” pops up as an option for changing our signature in the cosmic neighborhood. 

What if…. you, I, all beings devoted to living a higher frequency life, imagine only sounds of laughter radiating from our Earth. 

Imagine yourself “remote viewing” our planet in your meditations or night-time contemplations and hearing only the sounds of laughter mixed with joy, perhaps singing, perhaps dance, perhaps absolute glee…and nothing else.

Our major spiritual traditions teach much about silence and solemnity, but what if the absolute power is in laughter.  What if it actually is the “language of the gods”?

Call it the hundreth monkey banana moment or the tipping point, or an orgasmic shift!  Imagine what might happen. 

Imagine flipping the dominant energies we have come to expect by saturating cosmic sound waves with laughter!

Now, that’s a borderless state mind.


Senza Trucco, It Says It All, Italian Style!

Senza Trucco!
(without makeup)
 So, here I am writing the most unlikely blog about makeup?  Well, not exactly!

 

 I am writing about a giddy love affair I am having with the Italian words “senza trucco” (pronouced trucho).

 

I met this woman at the MUK, a shortened version for Mukilteo, the local coffeehouse and my designated office, actually, on Whidbey Island. She was working away on her laptop investigating a website called Senza Trucco.

 

She tells me it is about 4 women alchemists, wine makers, in Italy who have excelled at the art of organic biodynamic wines. They are referred to as the women “without makeup”, senza trucco, which just may be the most refreshingly right on description of women who are without pretense, bold women who are “what you see is what you get” dynamos. They make natural wines from their own intuitive blendings and they exude the naturalness of authenticity as women, women without makeup!

 

I was so inspired and delighted by the phrase that I dove headlong into improv fantasizing myself  a full bodied, over the top, Italian woman gesticulating wildly, exclaiming to any and all women who would be my audience:  senza trucco, senza trucco, senza trucco –with all the gusto of an Italian opera diva!

Senza Trucco - No Makeup!  

 

Now, before you write me off as nuts, just imagine adding this phrase to your every day vocabulary, twitter it, make it the new catchword for, well, all women of substance.

 

“She is definitely senza trucco!”

 Then….Imagine you have a friend that is practically doubled over from being “nice”, never saying what she means; someone you love, but drives you to distraction with her doubts and fears and habitual who am I’s. (maybe it’s even you)

 

Look her in the eyes and in your best “midlife mama” Italian impersonation, arms conducting the air, eyes blazing, bosom shaking, ring out with:  “getta grip, be you, find that woman inside senza trucco!”

 

Isn’t it wonderful to find words that universally say it all, you know like: “I get it, no explanation necessary.”

 

 

 

What say you?

 

Got Sacred Cows? Just How Many Teats Are You Milking?

One Can Never Be Too Irreverent About Reverence!

 

 

I just watched Sarah Silverman at her most irreverent.  Being a one-time Catholic amplified my laughter!

She is incredibly skilled at poking about in thoughts and beliefs that are considered “sacred cows” to someone or some group somewhere.  I like that.  She is not “choosy”.   She is a true descendant of the court jester/holy fool mucking around with what constitutes truth and what constitutes power and just what some people think “should never be said in public”!  Yes, I like that!

 I say embrace it because it keeps you from growing barnacles on your joints and brain parts!

 

Offended Sacred Cow

I too suffer (off and on) from a fair number of sacred cows in my own thinking.  I have thought them necessary to make sense of the world. They have also been a great way to deal with fears. There’s nothing like “absolutes” and unshakable dogma to provide temporary feelings of safety and security.
I no longer find this to be true.  It’s a bit too limiting and time consuming, really, to keep my focus there.   So, I applaud those who “laugh me down a notch” when I get too self righteous and too serious.
 This is not to say I always like it, but I do realize that the more time I spend  “milking” my own sacred cows, the less time I spend in the present where everything is changing in every moment at warp speed and requires a new me to show up and work with it.
How much time do you spend “at the teats”, so to speak?  Do you find yourself obsessively massaging thoughts and beliefs that you may have found useful at one time, but are now just so much, well, sour milk!
 I think it is fair to say that most of your inner movies are filled with sacred cows that you would prefer to keep alive and well.  It feels good to feel sure, to feel right, to feel in control.    The joke is that these inner movies rarely match  another persons and so it is hardly a sure fire way to connection!
Well, at some point, I chose to update my world in a much more original way,  I chose irreverence for its stuck-in-the-muck blasting power!  I now find it a useful way to shatter “mental mountains” that get in the way of my living fully and presently!

 Here’s a circumstance where irreverence saved me.  Once upon a time, I decided to become ordained as an “interfaith minister” (well, that’s another story), but I was so resistant to all the language like “reverend”,  “minister” and “god”, that the only way I could make peace with it was to become ordained as “The Reverend Holy Fool”.
This gave me wiggle room, you see, so I could blast through all the historical and bizarre connotations  linked with “minister of anything” or “one true god of anything”.  Both  ferocious  mental mountains, to be sure.
 I even had a name plate that said:  “The Holy Nose Knows” (a reference to the power of the red nose of courage worn by every clown-being  dedicated to mystical mayhem).  Now, I had the freedom to make it up as I went  along, relying on real people and real circumstances to keep me somewhat humble and “in touch”.
Irreverence is a magic wand” to turn everything upside down and backwards, to keep your life fresh with one foot in the air ready to leap to some new place when frozen thoughts and beliefs threaten!
I heartily recommend it.  Being offended is such a silly waste of time.
 Even the Mona Lisa from her place in the Paris Museum has been heard to say:  “just laugh and move on, please!”
I wonder where in your life a good dose of irreverence might “freshen the air” and create some much needed mystical mayhem?  
It is definitely a “mainstay” for Borderless Broads in the making!


 

A Zippity Doo Dah Day — Feel Immensely Full — Expect the Best — Become A Source of Delight!


 

 

A Zippity Doo Dah Day…. It’s not rocket science.  It is a practice.   Focus on the funny.  Let whimsy lighten you up.  Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to become a total source of delight. I say be bold and do nothing less!

I may sound like a broken record, but I am so passionate about you feeling alive and so full of  yourself that you can do nothing less than break out as “totally you” in every aspect of your life.

I do not know why some of us are more recessive and introverted and why some of us are more “out there” and extroverted, but I do know that whichever dominates in you, you still have a self expression that is dying to get out –sort of like a good orgasm!  

I also know that the world needs it!  Any expression of  joy is power in the world.  Any time you feel filled up, you change everything around you.–it’s a no-brainer!

Even though we all have our own temperaments, there is a huge difference between what feels like the “core” you and what has been socialized into “keeping the lid on”, like  never daring to break out in the “futterwaken”, Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter dance in Alice in Wonderland!

So, this blog is short and sweet.  Do things that fill you up, feel good and expect the best as often as you can, even if you have to squeeze your brain cells into submission which will change your brain which then changes your experience.

  • I suggest singing “zippity doo dah”as your morning mantra.  It’s not an age-thing, it’s just works! Get your household totally into it before you all go breezing out the door in different directions.

Zip-a-dee-doo-dah, zip-a-dee-ay
My, oh my, what a wonderful day
Plenty of sunshine headin’ my way
Zip-a-dee-doo-dah, zip-a-dee-ay

Mister Bluebird’s on my shoulder
It’s the truth, it’s actual
Ev’rything is satisfactual
Zip-a-dee-doo-dah, zip-a-dee-ay
Wonderful feeling, wonderful day, yes sir!

Zip-a-dee-doo-dah, zip-a-dee-ay
My, oh my, what a wonderful day
Plenty of sunshine headin’ my way
Zip-a-dee-doo-dah, zip-a-dee-ay

Salagadoola mechicka boola bibbidi-bobbidi-boo
Put ’em together and what have you got
bippity-boppity-boo

Salagadoola mechicka boola bibbidi-bobbidi-boo
It’ll do magic believe it or not
bippity-boppity-boo

Salagadoola means mechicka booleroo
But the thingmabob that does the job is
bippity-boppity-boo

Salagadoola menchicka boola bibbidi-bobbidi-boo
Put ’em together and what have you got
bippity-boppity bippity-boppity bippity-boppity-boo

  • Then make sure your kids, grandkids, team mates at work,  everyone you “touch” and most especially you, recite with gusto, 3 truths that will change everyone’s experience of “today”…

I have absolutely no complaints!

Everything is going my way!

I expect the best !

Just  the act of  searching for  these lyrics or any lyrics to crazy songs on youtube or googling comedic images  –clipart — (like I use for most of my blogs), or memorizing the words to funny poems like those of  Ed Lear, the wandering nonsense minstrel,  puts you in a different zone!  You absolutely become more playful.

So forget all those images that you see in most blogs, you know, the ones with real people looking like executives or the “barbie” doll woman of success.  Go for the fun—make people smile, at the least, and laugh at the most.

“They dined on mince, and slices of quince,

Which they ate with a runcible spoon;

And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand,

They danced by the light of the moon.”

( Ed Lear, a most delightful and quixotic man–find his poems (free on line)  and recite them to friends, to work colleagues, to your lover and definitely on the bus!)

It is totally up to you to become a source of delight!

 You will change.  Your life will change.  It’s a no-brainer!

JUST SAYIN….

PS: Hurricane Sandy has raged through the East Coast as I publish this.  Now, more than ever, “becoming a source of delight”  for yourself and others is crucial.  The rest of us physically unaffected by the storms can send focused intention  to “expect the best” and “feel immensely full of life”.  We can “hold this” for the people so greatly affected. Rather than feeling devastated with the devastation, is it not better to lift us all up by you, all of us, holding feelings of overwhelming good cheer for all affected?

Just sayin!


Campaigns and Koshares — How to Maintain Your Sanity Until the Election is a Done Deal!

Lighten Up! It’s Theater of the Absurd!

 

I’m in the Southwest at the moment.  This is the land of the Koshare, the Clown of the Pueblo peoples akin to the Medieval court jester who “told truth to power” and usually got away with it.

We are not having much success with truth-telling at the moment on the national scene so I called up the power of the  Koshare for a dose of truth and personal therapy.  This is not so unusual since my passion is cultivating a borderless state of mind and that allows me to seek help from other worlds when my own world seems to have “lost the thread”!

The Koshare is a playful being who delights in pointing out the pompous, the arrogant, and the terminal seriousness of we humans.  He romps about mimicking the absurd  behavior of those that believe they ” know best” for everyone else, for all life, really, and for the planet.

 You may see him fart in the middle of someone’s self important speech making, providing comic relief.  He may run around contorting his face, shaking all over, mumbling nonsense,  faking total insanity,so as to rattle the minds of people caught in the “trance of mindless belief” in all they hear or are told.  A common human foible, it seems.

 He cares nothing for the realm of ideas that have no relation to what he sees happening around him to real people in real time.  He doubles over in laughter knowing that so much of politics  is a mask for doing nothing and caring very little.

Koshare teaches that laughter and playful mimicry wake us up!   It  breaks the trance.  The “all too serious gene” suffocates our ability to listen to our own truths and sends us running to join the alpha herd that claims to have all the answers!

What does the Koshare do?  He jumps on his horse and rides backwards in the opposite direction!  

Can you find the  Koshare within you?

 This seems like the time to wake up, jump on your horse and ride in the opposite direction from all that is mean-spirited, divisive and greedy.

You might just be able to maintain your sanity until the election is a done deal.   You might even change the results, one “trance-breaker” at a time, but hurry……

Susan Mrosek, Artist

 

 

 

 

 

New Year – Don’t Just Take A Day – Take A Month


New Year- New Beginnings- New You

The New Year is often the time when I hear that universal lament:  “if I only knew my purpose, my life would have direction and meaning.”

Well, that’s a heady topic and I suggest you don’t just take a day to sort this out.  Take a month.  Realize that all of January can be a prep time for your coming year.

So, here’s my take and it’s good news indeed! Your purpose is simply to lighten up. I mean it.  Your purpose is to continually find ways to raise your vibratory level of being; to really get that you are energy and that you decide in each moment whether you live at a high or low frequency.  It matters.

The quality of your life and your emotional and physical health depend upon it.  Waking up with a “let me at this day” feeling of exuberance depends on it.

In the 2010 film, Alice in Wonderland, Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter says to Alice: “You are not as muchly as you were before. You have lost your muchness!”

Muchness enlightens us, animates us, and it’s easy to lose when we deplete our vibrant energetic selves and default to autopilot, considering seriousness to be a genetic law of nature! The Mad Hatter and his twin, the Holy Hapless Fool, remind us that chronic seriousness is a sure- fire prescription for ”dead man walking”.

This year, I encourage you to reclaim your muchness by turning your world upside down and backwards, as is the way of the Fool.  That is, lead your life through the higher frequencies of laughter and play, and relegate your rational mind to second in command.

Now, that’s a frightening thought to some, suggesting states of mayhem and unbridled merriment. “What about production?  What about the bottom-line?  What about spiritual advancement?” you say.   Well, take a leap and take a risk!  You will find that muchness is necessary to living life full out.  Muchness is found betwixt and between what we call reality; the place where laughter and play reside.  You will feel far more energized, clearer, and productive living your life through the lens of laughter!

As Lily Tomlin’s bag lady/fool says:

“I made some studies and reality is the leading cause of stress among those in touch with it.  I can take it in small doses, but as a lifestyle I found it too confining.  Now since I put reality on the back burner, my days are jam-packed and fun-filled!”

So I offer you a gateway to more play (which always leads to more laughter) …..

  • Create a Bubble Station on your deck/porch/yard. Become a whimsy-maker hurling giant bubbles into the air.  Add to each bubble something you want to release.  Meditative peaceful merriment will follow.
  • Adopt a Red Nose of Courage. Keep one in your desk, car, and on your person.  Caught in traffic?  Slip it on and wave to the drivers around you or nix the “all- too-serious gene” at the next staff/”bored” meeting.  Collude with your colleagues to send a red nose signal when a meeting becomes tense, loses its thread or just needs a break.  Forget words, use the nose!
  • Practice the Half-Smile (slightly upturned lips and relaxed face) EVERYWHERE you go.  It literally changes your brain to the “all is well” feeling.  Try it.  It works.

(Email me for wand, bubble, and nose suggestions)

So, all in all, it’s a grand idea to check your muchness on a regular basis and if you find yourself feeling: “I was much more muchly before” then it’s time for the healing power of laughter and play to dominate your year, mad as a Hatter and as muchly as a Fool.

Live Life Full Out In 2011!

Your Inner Eccentric in 2011!

Eccentrics in Training—A VERY GOOD READ!

Guest Blogger:   Robin Sierra /  Image selection:  Yours Truly, Morgana!

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Every year, Florence Foster Jenkins gave a private opera recital at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in New York City . She designed ornate costumes, at least three for every performance, including the Angel of Inspiration, resplendent with full feathered wings.

She also sang wildly out of tune, but this never stopped her from pursuing her vision of becoming an opera diva, nor did it prevent people from flocking to her performances.

She was like a character in a Marx Brothers movie; her complete lack of talent combined with her full-blown enthusiasm and extravagance became her glory, and tickets for the turn-of-the-century recitals were harder to come by than “a box at the Met on Caruso night,” as David Weeks describes in his book, “Eccentrics: A Study of Sanity and Strangeness.”  Her operatic career culminated in selling out Carnegie Hall at the age of 76.  She died a month later.

Eccentric in Training

Jenkins wrote her own epitaph: “Some people say I cannot sing, but no one can say I did not sing.”

There are people like Florence who have managed to retain their individuality in a rigid world, people who have not stuffed themselves into the tightly restrictive harness prescribed for us by our culture and families.  Some of these people we call eccentrics. Eccentrics have a reputation for being unhinged, but actually, they are often more courageous than the rest of us, and have something valuable to teach.

Two predominant traits of eccentrics are that they don’t give a damn what others think and they have an unwavering belief in themselves. They are willing to let their strangeness show and even amplify it. In the field of astronomy, eccentric means deviating from a circular form. These undaunted oddballs can inspire us to break out of whatever circles have been drawn around us, or that we have drawn around ourselves.

Your Inner Eccentric

Dr. Weeks says, “I think that we are all stranger than we think we are, and we try to control that, because we’re scared of what we’ll find in there.”  What we find may jostle a lifetime of habits and relationships.  It may require us to re-examine decisions and take risks. It may cause us to be ridiculed or not liked by others. But the reward we get  from easing that control is the liberating experience of a life fully lived, and the relief we feel when we let ourselves out of the bag.

I knew a man who failing as a farmer

Burned down his farmhouse for the fire insurance

and spent the proceeds on a telescope

to satisfy a lifelong curiosity

about our place among the infinities

Robert Frost

We often wait for our farms to fail rather than burning them down ourselves, unwilling to take the risk to be who we really are. Some people find it easier to break out and be themselves than others. Some people spend an entire lifetime holding themselves back or living someone else’s dream. The farmer in Frost’s poem initially didn’t believe it was possible to spend his time pondering stars.  It’s too risky for most people to even consider following their passions. What would the neighbors say about the farmer turned astronomer?  Probably that he was a farmer turned lunatic.

Trudy

Lily Tomlin’s character Trudy, an eccentric bag lady in the play The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe, says it well: “I never could have done stuff like that when I was in my right mind. I’d be worried people would think I was crazy.  When I think of the fun I missed, I try not to be bitter.” How much fun and passion do we miss because we are afraid of, and therefore confined by, what others may think of us?  How much does the fear of being the outcast bag lady or the lunatic farmer keep us from taking risks to be ourselves?

We try to please those around us, even when they’re not around us any longer. Other people’s voices become internalized, and keep us from acting spontaneously, originally, creatively. If we’re living our lives imagining what others want from us, where is our real life?  Life becomes a phantom of itself. This is what’s crazy. Trudy goes on: “I made some studies, and reality is the leading cause of stress among those in touch with it. I can take it in small doses, but as a lifestyle I found it too confining.”

Dr. Weeks found that eccentrics were healthier and happier than the rest of us, and attributes this to the fact that because they don’t feel the need to conform, they experience lower levels of stress, which causes their immune systems to function more efficiently, and they are therefore healthier. And when people are doing what they want to do, without worrying  too much about social repercussions, they are more joyful.

Nuns at Play

The point is not to emulate eccentrics just for the sake of being different. If you don’t feel a genuine calling to sing opera, it becomes an empty gesture, a sham. Whatever you do must come from a true place within. It’s  about being brave enough to reveal your particular authentic self. Eccentricity is a continuum. On one end is Florence Jenkins, on the other is a person screwing up the courage to ask a waiter to return the cold fettucini. Both matter.

You may consider practicing your own “strangeness” in small steps, remembering that what is a small step for one person may be an enormous one for another.

“Dare to do silly things” suggests author Ray Bradbury.  Wear goofy underwear to your next business meeting.  Thinking about your underwear may inspire a subversive smile on your face that may lead to your next creative act.  Sprinkle chocolate on your mashed potatoes, walk around backwards for a day, decorate your car with streamers and balloons, surprise someone with a birthday party when it’s not their birthday, put up Christmas lights in your living room in July.

You can use these things to prime the pump and coax out your unconventional self, which may give you the courage to step out of your prescribed circle, making more substantial changes, like executing a course correction in your career, bringing more honesty into your relationships, letting go of old patterns that no longer serve you, launching a new venture or simply spinning out of the orbit of other people’s expectations.

Robin Sierra is an artist, Bereavement Counselor and Creativity Consultant who has been guiding people through personal transformation for over 30 years.  You can see her artwork and more writings at www.rsierra.net.  Contact: rsierra@rsierra.net