Steadiness is needed now, a firm hand and firm intent if progress is to be made, if worry is to cease, and if compassion is once again to be of any use. Ground yourself in right action. Ground yourself in clear mind. Ground yourself in loving heart. Ground yourself in knowing that as you breathe and clear a path to making changes in your own life so do your changes effect the greater world. Let your grounding intentions and actions ground others around you. Be a good example of what it means to be a mature and grounded being, loving and compassionate, within and without. Take responsibility where others do not. It’s time for someone to be in charge. To begin with, in your own life, it should be you!
It was a Friday night. I put on some old Melanie albums. Jan and I sat and drank a glass of soon-to-be “leftover wine.”
Earlier that day, Jan was perusing the local news and events when she suddenly called to me. “Melanie is playing in Woodstock tomorrow night!” she said. “Do you want to go?”
“Only if we can sit very close and in the center,” I replied.
We checked the seating charts and there were indeed two seats, front and center, in the second row. Boom, we bought the tickets. We were going to see Melanie at an intimate 250 seat venue.
I’m not a nostalgist. I am drawn to music that is alive now. When I listen to old Melanie songs I feel the extreme purity of innocence seeking connection that she always embodied. This Grand Dame of the Woodstock Music Festival so captured the energy of rejuvenation of the time, of freedom, clarity, and the simplicity of love, so that every time I listen to her music it’s like opening a Gran Reserva 1969. I am never disappointed.
Melanie opened the set with “Beautiful People.” Her voice was a little shaky, seemed a bit strained, barely warmed up. I wondered, rather nervously for a moment, if she had become a glass of leftover wine. But in no time she began to open her heart and speak from her innocence. Her voice warmed and she took us on her deepening journey into new songs of love and innocence.
Like a shaman, in sweet playfulness, she reminded us that we are all beings who are going to die. She laughed and said, “Look, I wouldn’t have designed it that way, but it’s how it is.”
She appreciated the sweetness of youth, but valued our evolving selves in maturity as well. I was reminded of my blog on sexual maturity as she spoke, each stage of life offering its own unique fulfillments, if we can allow ourselves to enjoy each and every moment of the ride.
Standing transfixed on the stage, gazing off into another dimension, she sang about angels watching over us. Her husband of 45 years, who had recently died had left a note in their hotel room, addressed to her and her son, letting them know that “Angels are always with you.” And then he dropped Melanie off at Whole Foods in Framingham MA while he went off to Best Buy, something about his cell phone, telling her he would pick her up later, but he never returned. She turned his final communication into a song and when she sang it, he was there, watching over us.
And then the Tao of Melanie truly revealed itself in Smile. She spoke and sang in vintage form of the power of the smile; so simple, so down to earth, so practical, so available to everyone. Change the self, change the world, in this moment, by stalking a smile. SMILE! :)
She spoke of Amma, the Hugging Saint of India, soon herself to come to the Bearsville Theatre. For years she’s resisted “getting the hug.” Perhaps out of shyness or doubt, but finally she got “the hug.” And she was blown away! “That woman is connected to the source,” she said. “Get the hug! Get the hug!” And with that, I determined to get the hug.
After the concert I stalked being a fan. I’ve never waited for an autograph, but there we were, on line.
Before the concert had started, I had purchased her new CD. As I waited on line after the concert, I thought, “No, all my Melanie albums are on LP, vinyl, and frankly that’s how I most enjoy listening to music.” So, I cashed in my CD for her limited-edition, purple, tie-dyed LP for $50—the realization of a lifelong dream for Melanie, as she had always wanted to have an album that was a color other than black. Now I shared the dream and became the proud owner of one of the 300 limited-edition, purple, tie-dyed LPs!
As she signed the LP, Jan commented to her, “You’re not so shy anymore.”
“Well, not on stage,” she replied, “but in my personal life I still am.”
And then I told her I didn’t have my camera to get a picture with her, but asked, “Could I give you a hug?” She hesitated only briefly and then said, “Sure.” And with that, I got the hug!
That woman is connected to the source!
NOTE: The new purple tie-dyed album Ever Since You Never Heard of Me is only available through Melanie’s website or at her concerts. The CD is available through iTunes and there are a few songs not on the LP and vice versa, so they are different, the CD cut in 2010 the LP 2012. Here is a link to her website. Also listen to Melanie sing Smile with her fans in this fun YouTube video in the Netherlands.
I feel the energy of the movement that is now upon us. The media, after weeks of pretending nothing was happening, has finally picked up on the fact that a lot of people have gotten together in a very powerful way. The media eventually picks up on everything. But the media also attaches labels to things, whether they are accurate or not. In this case the media is reporting that we’re angry, and that does seem to be the truth of this Occupy Wall Street and Everything Else movement. We’re expressing our discontent and the media is taking up the cry: We’re angry!
The media machine has been telling us things about how we feel for years. For the past ten years they’ve been telling us that we’re afraid. Acknowledging that fear has led to taking security measures, and taking security precautions has led to more fear. So we became a nervous nation. We wanted something to take care of our anxiety. We looked for things to alleviate the fears. Enter the media again. They tell us not only that we are overweight, depressed, and stressed out but that we need to take drugs to temper the effects of our fears. Enter the drug companies. Now we are a nation of drug takers. There is a drug for every imaginable fear, real or otherwise. In essence we’ve become a lazy nation dependent on synthetic means of achieving security. But the truth is that we’ve been passively accepting what we’ve been fed and we’ve been lapping up the stuff for years now. However, if we listen to what is being said now, not just by the media but by everyone else, we discover that truthfully we are actually very angry.
Anger is a great catalyst. It can wake us up, shake us up, and make us take action, which is what is happening now. But I’m a little worried about where this is taking us and just what it is that we’re really so angry about. The obvious anger, what is driving this movement, is of course true: we are angry at the few who have made the decisions, taken over our country and left the rest of us to grovel in the dust while they enjoy the riches they have reaped. My own fear, however, is that this movement will collapse, that the opportunity to truly become ONE mass movement will fall into blaming and kneejerk retaliation.
In using anger as a catalyst we must question again and again why we are so angry. Are we really, each one of us angry at the 1%? Yes, we are. But where does our personal anger lie? Are we not also angry that we let things get this far? Are we not angry that we have been asleep, drugged and numbed, for the past ten years or longer? Are we angry at ourselves for not speaking out sooner, even though we saw where this nation was heading?
There have been many cries to wake up. One of the most significant was Al Gore’s cry in 2006 when he made his film An Inconvenient Truth. It too was a cry to get angry, to change the world before it was too late. Many of us heeded the cry, changed our ways, became skeptical of what the media was saying, began paying more attention, questioning everything. Many of us have been questioning authority our entire lives. Now a new generation, adept at interconnectedness like no other generation before it—except perhaps their parent’s generation, those of us who grew up in the 1960s and 70s—is taking up the baton that Al Gore handed them a few years ago. They are the next step in the energy of change that has been brewing for years. They are telling us that it’s not bad to be uncomfortable, that it’s not bad to protest, that it’s not a bad thing to say that we disagree and that we want things to be different.
When I study the stories and pictures that are coming out of the Occupy Wall Street movement I see an intelligent generation and nation of people of all ages that understands the truth of where we are. But I also see and hear a lot of blame and anger directed at those who are equally part of this awakening, no more responsible than we each are. For we would not be awakening in anger had we not gotten into the place we now find ourselves in by the choices we’ve all made along the way. I fear that this anger directed at others will keep us from acknowledging our deeper human truth: that we are all the same. We must not separate ourselves in our anger. We must not be afraid of each other. We must shed our labels and become one human movement without labels, borderless and angry in the right way.
And to me, this is the most important next step: to progress in the right way. We are indeed on the verge of progress, but nothing will come of it, on a mass scale, if we don’t question ourselves more deeply. We must face the 1% within that has allowed each one of us to get into the position we are in now. We must use our anger to turn our individual lives around by looking for the pessimist, the terrorist, the blamer, the addict, the narcissist, and the greedy one within. We must constantly ask ourselves what we are personally so angry about. Just as we confront others and demand accountability, we must accept the personal decisions that got us to this point in our own lives. Just as the Occupy movement is challenging us to join the mass energy of change, we must actually change personally, for the whole is no greater than the sum of its parts.
Most of the truths that Al Gore pointed out still remain unattended and unresolved. We must personally face the same truths within ourselves and question our personal motivation to change. What have we personally done to change ourselves over the past ten years?
I do believe that we have made great progress. As a nation, we dared to elect Barack Obama president. We said: here is a man to carry our hope. But we must realize that until we take action on our own behalf all he will be able to do is carry that hope for us, dashed or otherwise. We must not be disappointed in our elected officials, no matter who they are because, as I see it, they carry the conflict and discontent of this entire nation. We have assigned them the roles they play. Now it’s up to us to take it to the next level, just as it’s up to us to take our personal journeys to the next level.
That being said, the social media, the interconnectedness that we now have at our fingertips is absolutely the power of the people. Yes, it might be power that is fueled by anger, but let’s make it power fueled by our universal oneness as well. Our basic human goodness must fuel us now, for ourselves, our nation, and the world.
Dear Jeanne, Yesterday, a reader, Pat, commented on having an experience of your presence as she struggled with her responses to Message #640 regarding a relationship. Her description, in the comments section of that posting, of your energetic presence was unmistakable. Jan and I have felt you in exactly the same way. I wonder if you can explain what your own experience is, Jeanne, as you respond to those of us in dire need, in the midst of deep torment, tumult, or disaster. By describing your experiences you may provide a link for someone here to find that place of utter calm and love within themselves. If we can feel it so intensely in our bodies as it comes from you, from without, can we not conjure it up ourselves, from within?
Right now there are many people struggling with so many financial and economic issues around money, job loss, illness, etc., unable to cope, as our world is in such a state of deterioration and conflict. It feels like a lot of people are just coldly unresponsive to the true nature of the human condition and unable to feel love and compassion for others. At the same time that many are suffering with very basic needs to survive from day to day, others, in Haiti for instance, are suffering with the loss of thousands of lives due to a horrific earthquake and its aftermath. Compared to being here on earth, in the midst of calamities of all sorts, what is your experience of our situation, from your far greater energetic reality?
My energy, My Dears, is totally detached from the world you live in, detached from the troubles and the concerns of that world. As energy unattached, it finds no hold in that which so deeply holds you bound to that earth. This is the energy that I impart in making myself known upon that earth, pure, unattached energy of love and compassion. This is certainly the state of energetic self that you seek as you learn what it means to be an energy being. If you consider that your training is to understand energy and the self as energy, then you will also understand that you are all fully capable of producing a state of utterly calm energy from within. Although I say “from within,” I also add that it is achieved through knowledge of all energy, without as well as within, an understanding of energy of good as unattached and free, as evolutionary, as all loving and compassionate.
If you can find this description of energy to be understood within your mind and body, by accepting your experiences of it, you will have achieved the intuitive first step in knowing that energy exists as a pure state, which you are fully capable of accessing, now, upon that earth. In fact, this is the whole point of becoming spiritually awakened and evolved.
In channeling experiences, and in many other forms of spiritual encounters and experiences, in out of body and dream exploration, for instance, you gain access to the energetic self. These processes are your training. They have been training you your whole life. To realize and acknowledge this and allow such experiences to grow, accepting them as more than just coincidences but true wake up calls, is a true deepening of your energy process.
To find the self in a place of utter detachment allows for a greater understanding of pain and disaster. I see your world from that different perspective of utter detachment and, not only that, I also experience it from the energetic standpoint where nothing truly exists as you know it. You see, all that you perceive and experience visually, emotionally, and physically, etc., only exists in your reality and only for the time that you exist in it. As you are given experiences of other realities, energetically, as you describe with Pat and yourselves, you are offered true knowledge of the unreality of your present reality. You see?
In such moments, you are shown the truth of energy as pure experience, unattached to what you perceive right before your eyes. Your reality melts before you as you access experiences of pure energy. And, if you can allow the self to hold onto the reality of energy, as Pat did, you are offered enlightenment related to the energy that truly exists for you, in you, and all around you. It is an experience of the interconnectedness of all things, as liquid energy, rather than the solid world you normally perceive and experience.
When I enter your energetic fields and unite with your liquid energy, I offer you access to experiencing interconnectedness. You may experience it as utter calm, as loving energy like nothing you have experienced before, but, if you think about it, you will recognize it as utterly familiar. In accepting its utter familiarity you will reconnect with your own ability to access it more fully, knowing that you are also it, that you are liquid energy, at all times.
I know this is not quite as plausible when you are fully immersed in the cold reality of economic and social upheaval, war, disaster, and the natural calamities such as that which now exists on the island of Haiti. I know that life as you experience it is rarely liquid, but once having felt it you will understand the truth of it as another reality. It may not be easy, but if you can accept it as true fact, it will become more accessible. Your interactions with energy will broaden as your own experiences show you the melting point, the moment of disappearing into pure energy.
At such moments, your challenge is to consciously state, so that you track your experience, that: “I am going into the liquid energy field now. I am experiencing the interconnectedness of all things. I am energy.”
In such a state, you will have a glimpse, or longer, of what it means to be unattached energy. You will have clarity of your world. You will understand the greater interconnectedness, the meaning and purpose of all life, all experience, all disaster, pain, and death. You will simply know. And it will be as utterly familiar knowledge, even as your experiences of my energy have been, as interconnected energy. In recognizing this familiarity you will gain in energetic experience and you will become more fearless in your pursuit of it.
I ask that you open yourselves to such energy, liquid or otherwise, by asking for it, by requesting help, by trusting that you are fully acceptable to those of us who are waiting for you, by accessing your innocent self, as Pat does, as your trusting readers do, trusting that you will receive energy in return.
In death, liquid energy is accessed, all is known, and release from that which so holds you and confuses you is achieved. This is what you are describing and experiencing now in life, and to have such experiences, while in that reality, is your ultimate spiritual goal and achievement. It allows for greater growth as a human being. To access liquid energy, true loving compassion, and the utter detachment of such energy, is a gift showing you what you truly seek in that life, leading you to the true self, the utterly familiar energy self. Ultimately, it is leading you to knowledge of how to utilize that self more fully in your life. Eventually, you will discover, as Chuck asks, that this energy self is fully within your grasp. You just have to allow your self to trust that this is the self you seek, even though it may require that you detach from so many beliefs and perceptions of the world you live in, difficult and disintegrating as that detachment may be.
In life, as in death, you have access to liquid energy. You have access to clarity, to knowledge, to complete understanding, to love and compassion, in the broadest sense imaginable. And that is what you must remain open to, a new idea of your entire world, both without and within, now, in order to access that which my energetic companions and I so readily offer: pure energy, interconnected and fully available. But this is so only if you can believe it, and that is only achievable if you allow for experiences. Experience is your true test of everything, as it is mine.
In conclusion, I offer that in collusion with you upon that earth I too am allowed expression of my current state and I thank you for being open and asking for me. I will come to you; to all who ask. How I come will be right for each one of you.
Trust your experiences. Trust you own energy, and then experiment with it, without fear, for there is nothing to fear. But you already know that!