life spirituality ukraine

Waking Up Into My Life

I’m leaving Ukraine in a few days and heading back home. Actually, I’ll be going back to Chicago first to check in on some business stuff, friends and family. Hopefully I’ll be picking up a car in Chicago and driving back to California, spending a little time enroute

I love sometimes how I wake up right in the middle of my life. It’s so easy to just cruise through the day and be in my mind and thoughts and never really just be there. Every once in awhile, I find myself just simply waking up somewhere. Last night it was in the middle of a friendly poker game with Lidia and some friends of hers. I very simply felt my presence and the appreciation that my life gets to have all these different experiences. I’m writing more than just about recognizing the appreciation, though. I’m actually writing about feeling my presence within the middle of that appreciation It’s one thing to be appreciative, and another much deeper thing entirely to experience oneself in the midst of that appreciation. It’s deliciou

I had a similiar experience the other day while practicing piano at the music conservatory. I was playing and singing a song I love and have written about in this blog in the past, a song from the musical Carnival


“I come from the town of Mira,
Beyond the bridges of St. Claire.
I guess you’ve never heard of Mira—
It’s very small but still it’s there.

“It had the very greenest trees
And skies as bright as flame….
But what I liked the best in Mira
Is everybody knew my name.”

I was playing it and singing it rather heartfully when a young man, early 20s, came in and sat down to listen. After I finished we spoke some

His name is Alexey, and I found out he plays too, so I asked him to play and was treated to a private concert. It was quite a show. In the midst of it, I teared up, as I was really feeling my presence in the midst of this connection. He was showing me part of his soul, and I was there to witness.

Presence is a powerful thing, to just BE somewhere. That’s the deepest part of my spiritual practice really, simply Being somewhere, without an agenda, without an interpretation, without a judgment, without anything really, just being there. It’s the beauty of meditation to me, as it gives us an opportunity to practice just being there. It’s an opportunity to just sit there and practice doing “nothing.” Nothing is one of the hardest things to do, really, but once we start to get the hang of it, it’s amazing how much can open up within that nothingness.

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