To what comes next-

Picture by Robert Valenzuela ( @3rd.night)

I have had a recent lull to my writing, in stark contrast to the frenzy of past months. My spring feverish ideas and thoughts left freely from my brain onto the page. I truly enjoyed my every day post commitment I set out to complete back in March (birthday challenge) . Truly nothing has kept me more on my toes, than my yoga/ exercise practice and my writing.

As of late I’ve had what many would call a freeze of my creative flow. I don’t know if this is a set back or a regroup, but for what its worth, I would not be a particularly good blogger, if I didn’t share this stagnancy with my small yet powerful and encouraging audience (share my posts with your friends!).

I’m feeling a little stuck.

There are a plethora of things I want to share my thoughts on, but in this growing cacophony of opinions and thoughts my mind is becoming overwhelmed with the opinions of everybody else, to really be able to be a valid voice in the mix. The reminder that depression, and suicide is so openly discussed, took me back to my days of battling depression, and how I was able through very lucky circumstances and good people to get out of bed, put one foot in front of the other, pull myself out of dark cavernous thoughts, and figure shit out.

I battle with self doubt, body image issues, self esteem issues, and the list goes on. Yet here I am writing about it, even though I’m still stuck. I often promise I will share as much of myself as possible it’s the only way to write.

There is definitely a chaotic order to the way I convey my thoughts on this blog, and I appreciate those who’ve followed and continue to follow my musings, poetry, analysis and reflections.

For now I will leave you with a small gratitude list. When you get stuck, make one too, it helps.

  1. I’m grateful for my health. Two dear friends who I deeply care for are battling cancer. They are warriors, who absolutely give me courage to be even better and more resilient.
  2. I’m extremely grateful for my home here in New York. It’s a sanctuary and a quiet space, in this overwhelming city.  Every night I sit on my balcony; on these warm summer nights, and smile at how blessed I am to be here. I miss Greece and my home there every waking moment, but having the opportunity to travel and live here isn’t available to many of my fellow country men and women. Thousands of refugees are still in limbo on many Greek islands bordering Turkey. Children and their families are being torn apart as we speak at US borders. As we all battle internal crisis, so much turmoil is occurring on a daily basis. That forces me to think twice before I forget where I’ve come from.
  3. I’m grateful for rekindled and real friendships, from the embers of dead affairs. And I’m grateful I recently escaped a toxic affair before it created further damage.
  4. I’m grateful for Art. As I’ve mentioned in past posts and I’ll say it again, Art is the only thing that can and has created meaningful change. Art touches and effects everyone in small and big ways and is and will continue to be a huge vehicle for truth, change, and progress.

I’m still stuck with my writing, but I’m grateful I can share that too. When overwhelmed with life’s rocky path, be grateful for what you have to overcome it.

May all beings be Happy and Free.

Lokah Samastah Sukhino Bhavantu-

A New Feminine

sivashakti1

I recently attended a  workshop and discussion on Tantra as a methodology and philosophy. In my 20 years of yoga practice, I am still learning of this vast body of knowledge, of which I have explored very few aspects of.

For any one curious about Tantra, its origins its philosophy and its many offshoots; thousands of books have been written on the matter, some from a Yoga perspective, some from a spiritual practice and of course the more widely talked about and frequently advertised sexual explorations.

The divine feminine/ masculine the transformation of energy and sexual energy into something spiritual is a multi layered and multi faceted subject. It’s not just about sex. My problem with the workshop I attended, and many more that are out there on the philosophy of Tantra; is that most people will reduce this sacred ancient tradition to a new spice in their sexual exploration cabinet.

How do we deeply connect to these concepts without distorting them? How do we show reverence and respect for such traditions without transforming them into sound bites, easy quotes and convenient tricks?

For what seems to be the “the meeting of man and woman; the transformation of energy through sex, love and meditation. ” (Osho) becomes a gimmick and a pick up line.

Tapping into the deeper layers of Shiva and Shakti energy within us, the inner masculine and inner feminine traits take time, and deep devotion. In this fast paced world of instant pleasure, and porn culture, I’m afraid these practices are somewhat lost to most who seek to understand them.

For what modern feminism has sadly become is this man hating, castrating society and then the eventual rise of women in a man made world. Yes women have been oppressed, men have been given some sort of “god given” right to be superior, and the patriarchal societies have been built to oppress that which they come from. Yes all of this is true but what we’ve left out is the third aspect of the union between male and female energy and that is the divine.

Yet we’ve grown up thinking (myself included), that equality means denying our nature, our amazing feminine nature, and distorting it to making women think they are always  inferior and men superior. This way of thinking leaves women with the only choice left to them to even the playing field in this distorted world, and that is “to act” like men… which isn’t the fucking point.

If any one is interested in Reading more about Tantra here is a beginner’s guide :

Tantra Illuminated

Tantra : The Supreme Understanding, OSHO

What’s in a name

Gustave Mareau
Gustave Moreau- Helen of Troy

 

 

Helen… (illuminated, bright). A name also claiming its roots in the ancient Greek word for moon ( σελήνη) and in Homeric times had added meaning as “the one who is the destroyer of ships”.

It’s all in a name, passed down from generation to generation. And we carry the Helens before us; the ones who paved the way for us; the ones who’s names remain in the history books and the epic fables.

Helen fell in love with King Paris of Troy, causing the beginning of the Trojan War, as her husband Menelaus fought a bitter battle to take back his wife from the Trojans.  Helen was known for her unmatched beauty, and grace. Throughout history women carrying this name are powerful, uniting and dividing figures; heroic women, strong women, conniving and beguiling women, and above all controversial women.

It is a name that was handed down to me by my grandmother Eleni. Through her I honor her name and her legacy, and all the other Helens past. We embody history in our given names; they give us character, identity and a cultural connection. Every year I celebrate this given name I aspire to live up to; it brings with it a familial and cultural connection to my birthplace. Oftentimes names are just passed down from grandparents to children in Greek culture; as a nod to lineage and family connection, but most times these names carry a significance we don’t often understand.

Today is a celebration of light.

Cheers Eleni, Helen, Lena, Elena, Eleana.

What does your name say about you?

Words Matter

Des mots faciles des mots fragiles
C’était trop beau

Paroles Paroles by Alain Delon and Dalida

Choose your words wisely. 

It’s a matter of principle, it’s a matter of how we see the world and how the world sees us. Even though so much of communication is non verbal; choosing the words we use carefully is of utmost importance. There is an art to knowing what to say and how to say it, and if need be not saying anything at all.

Words matter; they can hurt or they can heal. A lot is revealed by their tone, their phrasing their intent. The more I write, the more I share through both Greek and English; I’m often called upon to sharpen my pencil and my mind. One wrong word and the whole meaning is altered, the whole feel of what is meant to come through is derailed.

Sometimes silence is the only answer.

The words we use for and about others matter. How we describe others, how we talk about them, what energy we share through verbal communication is as sharp and affecting as any weapon. One word can uplift whereas another can dismantle and destroy. How we express ourselves matters; how we speak to others matters, and how we communicate matters, because as words go, lots can be lost in translation.

Words are slippery and deceiving and like little children need guidance and boundaries to thrive and shine on and off the page. Words have weight, they sting and jab, sooth and caress. Each syllable contains an energy; and knowing how to use that energy is as valuable as any amount of currency, because words are also currency.

Even though so much of communication is non verbal; choosing the words we use carefully is of utmost importance.

Recently I had an exchange with an old lover. I was very cautious about how I wanted to respond to his communication. The right words were not appearing to me in order to carefully convey what I wanted to say in response to his contact. I mulled over it for quite some time before I realized that any words I used were a waste of time, energy, and ultimately I would never properly convey verbally what I desperately wanted to say; so I said nothing. Sometimes keeping one’s words to oneself is the wisest choice.

Words matter, words are fragile and delicate and can bend and break after they have been uttered. Words mean nothing; and they mean everything, and sometimes there aren’t enough words to describe a feeling.

So sometimes silence is the only answer.

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My Achilles Heel (Αχίλλειος Πτέρνα)

Αχίλλειος Πτέρνα (Achilles He(A)el)  — photo by Robert V. (@3rd.night)

 

Reflections of faces getting caught in dark spaces, with wounded hearts.

Secrets revealed in awkward glances and lost chances.

Pursed lips, and stolen glances.

Tired eyes staring into illuminated screens, reflecting, deflecting, rejecting

playing the part in a show that no one cares to watch.

And all I want to do is scream.

***

How do you measure my love and then tear it apart?

I created a love story and it fell short from the start.

It seems clear that my imagination got the best of me

Again.

***

I no longer can settle for three forths of a man.

I can’t stand (on) mediocrity in the face of perfection.

That no longer holds my attention

Any more.

How much of your comfort would you give up for love?

I guess you will never find out.

In the moment

You know it’s about those moments; Those times when you are absolutely and without a doubt; content with who you are, what you’re doing and where you need to be.

Everything else melts away and you are here, now, present.

Those moments when everyone else is in slow motion and all you hear is your breath and the quiet spaces in between.

Those moments when all the negativity, the passions the complications, the half truths, and unfinished business of life; are all irrelevant, because they are not that important after all.

The only thing that matters is now. Everything before and after, is a need to remember and a wish to know more.

We long for the past, we wish it turned out differently, lament its absence and struggle to let go. Then we plan for a future; something we know nothing about, we worry about things that haven’t happened yet and set goals for what may happen; and only thing that really matters is our daily participation in our present; that is the only guarantee.

In these moments meditation happens. We let go of our senses we let go of our expectations we let go of our need to survive and just exist. We shed our masks, our personas, our ideas of ourselves and others and connect with nature, connect with ourselves, connect with our breath and actually pay attention, to the NOW.

Those are rare moments, and they shouldn’t be.

Next time you are at that place, take a step back, take a breath and be present.

right_now_wallpaper_by_phoric