In the land of the yoga pants

The artist Bjorn Davidson is fond of calling our area — North Palm Beach County — the land of the yoga pants. It wasn’t till I left our zone for the rest of the United States recently that I discovered fit women from 20 to 60 don’t all wear yoga attire.

A disappointment, certainly, but like so many unsettling experiences in life, I grew from it.

In the land of the yoga pants, fitness is queen. As long as you are calm and cosmic in your glistening.

In the land of the yoga pants, om is more common than amen.

In the land of the yoga pants, you may not actually have attended a yoga class in some months but extra points accrue if you look like you might break into an asana any moment.

Spontaneously, yet mindfully.

In the land of the yoga pants, we use words like energy when we’re speaking of some spooky gestalt encompassing character and personality. Or the way we feel about how a project is going — or our life mission — or our life mate — or our desire to do yoga.

“She’s got good energy. You can feel it.”

“The energy’s just not flowing these days. It’s not there. You can’t force it.”

In the land of the yoga pants, Whole Foods is a spiritual discipline.

As is conscious anything . . . conscious parenting, conscious uncoupling, conscious sexuality, conscious consumption, conscious pumice stoning.

I’m writing to you now while swimming the backstroke in a pool of expanded consciousness.

Forget power napping. Go straight to conscious napping. There’s nothing more elevated than attaining conscious unconsciousness.

In the land of the yoga pants, we seek to expand our awareness and our net worth. Our chakras and our playdate network.

In the land of the yoga pants, men don’t wear them. Though they sure appreciate women who do. Ask Bjorn.

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Composing your day

Artist Ray Gross caught up with me after years not being in touch. One morning — still in bed — he had the thought to connect with me. He’s learned to follow up on his intuitive sparks. So here we were talking today.

We learned we’ve both been through spiritually cathartic moments that changed the trajectory of our lives.

We also talked creative engagement — doing the thing and letting go of the result. The way my attorney brother will write down TWBD at trial as he awaits the judgment. Thy Will Be Done.

Ray talked about letting go and letting God. His girlfriend speaks Eckhart Tolle . . . she speaks of coming back to the now.

What struck me most, though, was this. He was the third artist I’d spoken to recently who lies in bed for awhile upon waking, composing his day with his new-to-the-day mind.

Each of these artists lies there assembling the elements of their day . . . till they feel it click into place, till they are compelled to rise up and dive into the work.

Composing your day. The effective do it as their day begins. The ambitious do the night before.

(And the rigid/obsessive to it the year before . . . ) (it’s all about balance) (balancing spontaneity and order) (zest and drive) (carbs and proteins) (Saturday night and Monday morning)

I’m a bounder out of bedder. Maybe bounding isn’t the right image. I’m more a slider out of bedder in the mornings. But that slide toward the toilet and then the day starts fairly quickly on the heels of coming to consciousness.

Sculptor David Langley was the first to tell me about his morning routine of dreaming the day into existence from his bed.

Then when artist David Gordon weighed in on how he manages his insane productivity starting from his morning time in bed, I paid attention. 

I’m a fan of everything that happens in bed — from exactly what you’re thinking to reading to pillow talk to sleeping to family fun to coming back later in the day and napping — so I perked up.

I’ve forced myself — if that’s the right phrase for something so lazily enticing — to lie around languidly for a few minutes. Getting a pulse on the day. Imagining how I’d like it to flow.

I’ve not been doing it long enough to speak to results. But I can tell you everything feels better. It feels better to ease into the day having pre-programmed my antic self to its enjoyment, not its stresses.

So far it’s been uncanny how well potential pitfalls in my days have smoothed into moments to relish.

For you 

Evan Griffith
__________________________
Click here for occasional notes to your inbox on creativity + spirituality + whee.

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Distress

Distress is an alert.

I’m welcoming distress now.

It’s the signal saying, subside.

Its message is, connect.

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Gregg Braden: What it takes to unlock the Divine Matrix in your life


Confiscated from . . . 
The Divine Matrix: Bridging Time, Space, Miracles, and Belief
by Gregg Braden

Perhaps the clearest example of this language is described in the words of a man who lived in a monastery nearly 15,000 feet above sea level, high on the Tibetan plateau.


In the spring of 1998, I had the opportunity to facilitate a combined research trip and pilgrimage into the the highlands of Central Tibet for 22 days. During that time, the group and I found ourselves immersed in some of the most magnificent, rugged, pristine, and remote land remaining on the planet today. Along the way, we visited 12 monasteries, 2 nunneries, and some of the most beautiful humans you could ever imagine including monks, nuns, nomads, and pilgrims.


It was during that time that I was face-to-face with the abbot of one of the monasteries and got the chance to ask the question we’d traveled so far and long to ask.


On an icy morning we found ourselves cramped in a tiny chapel surrounded by Buddhist altars and ancient thangkas (  the intricately brocaded tapestries that depict the great teachings of the past). I focused my attention directly on the eyes on the timeless-looking man seated lotus-style in front of me. Through our translator, I asked him the same question that I’d asked every monk and nun we’d met through our pilgrimage. 


“When we see your prayers,” I began, “what are you doing? When we watch you intone and chant for 14 and 16 hours a day; when we see the bells, bowls, gongs, chimes, mudras and mantras on the outside, what’s happening to you on the inside?


A powerful sensation rippled through my body as the translator shared the abbot’s answer. 


“You’ve never seen our prayers,” he said, “because a prayer cannot be seen.” Adjusting the heavy wool robes beneath his feet, the abbot continued, “What you’ve seen is what we do to create the feeling in our bodies. Feeling is is the prayer!


How beautiful, I thought. And how simple!

Just as the late-20th-century experiments had shown, it’s human feeling and emotion that affect the stuff our reality is made of — it’s our inner language that changes the atoms, electrons, and photons of the outer world.

However, this is less about the actual words we utter and more about the feeling that they create within us. It’s the language of the emotion that speaks to the quantum forces of the universe . . . feeling is what the Divine Matrix recognizes.


     

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Joy me up, buttercup

One of the great serendipities on the road is when you come across people larking about.

Right now I’m in a highly rated — by truckers and locals — roadside café in the California desert. They call it the valley here. I can see the mountains rising up to one side, the ones I’ll be traversing in an hour’s time to the other side — the green side of California. The people side. The California we see in movies. You know, where all the sex and shopping and celebrities happen.

Here on this side of the mountain range, in the booth next to me, there is a family having themselves a relaxed joy time.

There’s nothing better to behold than this!

People casually connected, enjoying themselves, soft chuckles breaking out from time to time, pleasantness and life and envelopment in their moment.

One of the
young girls is perhaps close to my son’s age, maybe a year or two older. It’s hard to tell, girls are more mature and verbal . . . . Oops! The older girl is a boy. One with a higher pitch. I see this as he hops out of the booth for a bathroom run.

Here’s the thing: The parents and the kids swirl in light talk with pockets of silence coming and going. You can tell there is real affection here.

The father reads aloud an Abraham Lincoln quote . . . and they chat about it for a moment, letting the kids suss out their own meanings. So they have me there too. Life lessons can be made anywhere, even retrieved from a phone in the booth of a diner.

God I love this family!

But I can’t tell them. It would be too creepy.

On the road I’ve sat next to enough families on the road to feel the affection or distance. Meal time reveals all.

I’m going to be home by week’s end, relishing time with my own joy boy. And our nephew who’s living with us for the second summer. And that phenom woman who shares her life with me.

Today we celebrate casual connections that run deep. It’s never too late to add more into your life.

Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends with them?

~ Abraham Lincoln

 
For you 

Evan Griffith
__________________________
Click here for occasional notes to your inbox on creativity + spirituality + whee.

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In the era of expression: Significance not survival



77-year old MomJo doing stretches on a bridge.
She can still get that leg up on top of the railing.
Show off.

In the era of expression we look to significance and not survival to make our choices.

In the expression era it pays more to be you.

Who do we hear most about? The unique ones.

Who do we support? Those who expressify. The food trucker who puts her brand of silly crazy into what she offers.

Who do we get behind? The committed ones. The attorney who advocates for rescue animals.

In the expression era we talk about individualism but in reality we practice collaboratism.

There’s not one person alive in the modern world who does it alone. Even if you’re a loner and a rebel and a hermit swinging from handmade hemp vines in a Pacific Northwest rainforest, civilization has aided you by what you’ve brought with you.

In the era of expression we self-actualize through our relationships.

And they are many. With our work, our calling, our people, our interests, our sexuality, our colors (burnt orange mama!), our affiliations, our giving, our creations, our relationship to the vastness.

Have you noticed this? In the expression era a buoyant heart wins out.

You seek to be lifted up by the professionals you see. You want to be transported to Slightly Better Future You every time you partake in a transaction. You want to taste the sweet teat of happiness as you go about your day. You want to go your own way peacefully and you want that for others too. You want for others what you want for yourself. To thrive. To grow. To engage. To frolic. To consort. To thrive.

The expression era is all about thriving your own idiosyncratic way — while enjoying very cool connections with people you care about (who are thriving in their own sometimes maddening sometimes inspiring sometimes perplexing often winning ways).

 

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Living the vibrational matrix: How to reassemble reality

In the sci fi film The Matrix the hero Neo is resurrected by a kiss. He’d been hole punched by bullets. Once love brought him back from death he could see behind the surface of reality

He could now see the programming language running the world . . . walls, windows, doors, floors, people . . . the algorithms streaming every object were laid bare to him. With this new sight/insight, he could manipulate reality.  

He could slow bullets down to a pause. And then pluck them slowly, lightly, from the air in front of him.

Our very own vibrational matrix seems to be activated by the same power.

Love. Pure pure love.

Who makes it in this world?

Those who love what they do so fully they become an embodiment of it.

Who has the most satisfying life?

He/she who loves the most.

What force transforms an agonizing situation into something transcendent?

You’re right . . . (pure) love.

What grows you?

An insight so perfect you know it’s true by the way you love it.

It’s this love thing that reassembles reality before your very eyes.

For you 

Evan Griffith
__________________________
Click here for occasional notes to your inbox on creativity + spirituality + whee.

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Universal opulence

When Adam Smith wrote The Wealth of Nations in the 1770s he did so to guide governments to what he termed universal opulence.

Smith articulated a vision where self-interest through a market economy intertwined with government efforts for the common good would bring about a state of abundance for all.

We’re living in that world and we don’t see it.

In Smith’s time the vast populace was uneducated. Laborers worked six and seven days a week, with each workday far longer than what we know today. Child labor was rampant. Humans not at the top of the chain were little more than beasts of burden.

Today we live in Smith’s universal opulence. Most of us are literate to some degree. Our common day contains so many wonders that if Adam Smith were to come back and experience them he’d think it was heaven. He’d be amazed we weren’t dancing in the streets.

TVs, computers, information in seconds, phones to speak to whomever we damn well please no matter where they are, roofs that don’t catch on fire or drop lice on us.

Choice in where we work and live. Choice in religion (or no religion). Choice in fabrics and colors and devices so plentiful we can’t begin to name them all.

Homes with floors. Homes with toilets. Indoors! The ability to conjure our own favorite temperature. Glass windows even for those who are poor.

Transportation more wondrous than fabled magic carpets.

And you could tick off many others. You could get up from this screen you’re reading and within 100 feet you could find 1,000 commonplace items that would be miracles to Adam Smith.

So why don’t we feel it?

What more do we require to feel awe at this existence?

 

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At a Walgreens in Santa Fe

charcoal drawing on an entryway wall
to a store in The Plaza,
Santa Fe
 

Two Hispanic women and I were browsing the same section (pain relief). A little girl yelled loudly from the aisle over.

First woman: Why do kids want so much shit!

Second woman: Ummmmm . . . because they’re just like us?

Christ I laughed hard. Truth be funny!

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The expression economy: 5 aspects

I’ve heard we’ve entered into the service economy but I don’t buy it. That nomenclature is short sighted.

I believe we’ve entered the era of expression. Hence the expression economy.

Why was Apple stratospherically successful for a decade running? Scintillating design that took your level of choice to a new plane.

Why has social media exploded onto the scene? Ease of expressifying!

Why are you reading this now? Because you are seeking content that speaks to who you are.

Why does Gene Simmons hire big-breasted women to accompany him on media outings? It’s who he wants to project he is.

The expression economy has these five aspects to it:

1. Design. Specifically design that amplifies who you desire to be.

2. Choice. Guns ‘n’ Ammo or Mother Jones? Your identity makes the choice.

3. Individualization. Customization so you can tailor a product tightly, magnificently, in the most detailed ways to your quirky self.

4. Expression. So you can let it out. Who you are needs to express itself. Those who find ways to amplify your youness win big in the expression economy.

5. Audience. There’s always an audience in the expression economy. Intimate (bedroom play things) to a mass of strangers (Twitter), we want to share ourselves.

 
For you —

Evan Griffith
__________________________
What creators do

Click here for the occasional thing from The World Is Freaky Beautiful.

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