Tag Archives: path of heart

Chuck’s Place: The Path Of Innocence

First light, innocence of a new day... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
First light, innocence of a new day…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

I am deeply appreciative of the pioneering work of others who have contributed to the clarity of my own unfolding path. As a result, I recently considered a major shift. The question that presented was whether or not to deepen my affiliation with the work of one of those pioneers, a major energetic commitment.

I’ve been at this kind of juncture many times in this life. I recall the moment when Jeanne and I looked into each other’s eyes after our first encounter with the witches of Carlos Castaneda’s lineage. In that moment we knew that this was it. Our lives energetically shifted forever as we aligned our intent with the intent of the Shamans of Ancient Mexico, the intent of total freedom.

As I pondered this current potential shift, I threw the I Ching and received the guidance of hexagram #10, Treading [Conduct] with a moving line in the second place. Treading portrays the weak going to meet the strong, the weak literally treading on the tail of the tiger. In this case, the weak is innocent, not meaning harm but in fact seeking connection. And with that the powerful tiger is accepting; it does not swallow up the weak.

To me the tiger, the powerful, is the unconscious in all its deepest transpersonal manifestations including spirit, in all its mystery. The weak is consciousness, innocent but limited in its knowledge of the vastness of self. All healing requires a fluid relationship between the weak and the strong. The I Ching is speaking directly to my question: How best to approach this great mystery of spirit? In the nine in the second place, it refines its answer, as follows:

The situation of a lonely sage is indicated here. He remains withdrawn from the bustle of life, seeks nothing, asks nothing of anyone, and is not dazzled by enticing goals. He is true to himself and travels through life unassailed, on a level road. Since he is content and does not challenge fate, he remains free of entanglements.

This answer resonates deeply with my heart, mirroring the path of heart that Jeanne and I embarked upon on that day with the witches of Castaneda’s lineage. It was my head that questioned a shift, but the I Ching answered to my heart! The I Ching produces a future reflection as well, based on this charged second line, the hexagram of Innocence, #25. Here, the point is further driven home:

When, in accord with this, movement follows the law of heaven, man is innocent and without guile. His mind is natural and true, unshadowed by reflection or ulterior designs. For wherever conscious purpose is to be seen, there the truth and innocence of nature have been lost. Nature that is not directed by the spirit is not true but degenerate nature.

To underscore: Movement that flows from the head and not the heart loses its innocent connection to spirit.

Energy of true nature... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
Energy of true nature…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Jan and I accept that we are lone wolves. We promote not; we seek not to affiliate. We attach no self-importance to our work. We strive to remain purely innocent journeyers, humbly offering our experiences that others may learn and grow. We open to the magnetic draw of spirit as it may choose to move through our works.

Jan’s latest book, Into the Vast Nothingness, published today, is another offering to those seeking the tools to take the deepest of soul retrieval journeys in this life. Our only intent is that her works may inspire and find their way to those seeking to unburden and truly align with their own path of innocence.

As for us, we remain lone wolves, navigating our own paths of innocence—quite happily, I might add!

Remaining on my path of heart,

We are very excited to announce the publication of Jan’s new book. We energetically send it on it’s way with the aforementioned intent. Here is the link: Into the Vast Nothingness. The Kindle edition is soon to be published. Updates to follow.

Readers of Infinity: Look Outwardly But Turn Inwardly

Here is this week’s message from Jeanne:

Eventually, as you take your path of heart, it will all become clear... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
Eventually, as you take your path of heart,
it will all become clear…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

We must all take our own journeys. We must let others in our lives take their own journeys as well. Yet we must all accept the guidance that comes to us, just as we must all responsibly share the guidance that we have to offer.

There is a fine line between being a teacher and being a student. In the beginning we do need guidance, but our far greater work lies within, in the context of our inner world, where only we can go. And so a teacher may be necessary as we begin our inward journey, as we seek our own path. Eventually our teacher will let us go, because we will let the teacher know that we are ready, and the teacher will not hold onto us, for a good teacher knows when the student is ready.

Seek always your own path, even when you are a student. Don’t forget to look around you as you go through life, searching always for the next sign showing you your new direction. Every day life points you in a new direction—each day—aiding you to find not only your anchoring soul within, but the flame of your transcendent soul as well. This is what you seek, access to both your grounded self and your free self. They must be brought together in some form of practice that will enable them both to harmoniously coexist, as well as continually advance.

Look outwardly but turn inwardly to find the signs that will lead to your greater connection with Self, with your wholeness, with your calm inner knowing self.

Do not be afraid to be different. Do not be afraid to latch onto that ray of light which resonates so deeply with your heart. It is only by taking that path of heart—different though it may be from the paths that those around you are taking—that you will find your true self.

Your path of heart is the only one for you. Once you are on it, you will know it. Then, become a good teacher by your example, by your practice of taking that path of heart every day of your life through task and turmoil, through joy and disdain, through beauty and destruction. If it is truly your path of heart then it is right, and everything you encounter on that path is right too.

A Day in a Life: So, What’s It All About?

Is this really what life is all about?

On my father’s eightieth birthday, as we sat around the crowded dinner table, I posed a question.

“Dad,” I said, “you’ve lived a long life, reached this ripe old age of eighty. Do you have any words of wisdom to impart to all of us on this momentous occasion?”

My father looked at me and then glanced around the table at the rest of the family, everyone wondering just what he might say to such a question. His gaze turned to the table laden with food and he simply said: “Pass the butter.”

Laughter erupted, but that was all he said. He didn’t follow it up with a single word and we were left to wonder. Is that really what it’s all about? Pass the butter? Was he telling us that his opinion didn’t matter or that he just didn’t have anything to say about life? Was he suggesting that nothing really matters in the end, that the only things that matter are what comes next? Was he implying that my question was too much to respond to, too impertinent to spring on him like that?

My father was not an outwardly expressive man, kept his thoughts private for the most part, though I always suspected he had a thoughtful, rich inner life, as I expect everyone does. At one time in my youth I had admonished him to quit wasting his imagination on fears and put it to creative outpourings, for I saw, at an early age, how fear consumed him. I knew that in his youth he had been a poet with aspirations of becoming a writer, but those dreams got interrupted, usurped by duties of marriage and family.

As I experienced my father turning from my question that evening at the dinner table, I felt not only a pang of rejection, but, by far, a deeper sense of dismay, for I could not fathom that someone could have lived so long and not been able to speak from the deepness of his heart to his own family. At the time, I was deep into my recapitulation, investigating myself in a most thorough manner, constantly asking myself challenging questions and demanding that I find the answers within. I was learning to trust my heart, turning to my inner self for the answers I sought, and thus I could not imagine that he had not, at some time, done the same. For, as I said, I expected everyone to have a rich inner life. But now I know that not everyone chooses to explore the inner world of the deeper self in quite the same way and beyond that, that many roads lead to a path of heart.

I will turn sixty this year, and I hope that if my children ask me to impart some words of wisdom that I will be as succinct as my father, that perhaps I will be able to wrap it all up in a nutshell and say, this is what life is really all about: Pass the butter. For I think my father’s answer says it all.

He was really saying, without self-importance, without attachment, without needing to uphold anything: This is how I do life, how are you choosing to live your life? And indeed, that is a most private endeavor. Can I be as detached as my father and fully own my own journey, and without judgment let others live the life they choose?

From my father, I have learned that life is not about making a point or being right, or having the answers. Life is really just about choosing how you want to live and then doing it to the fullest. I know that my father lived his life according to his own values, that he made choices in alignment with what he felt was right. He was extremely honest, hard working, dedicated to serving others less fortunate, though he himself was not well off by any means. I know that in his own way he lived every day from a deeply caring place and that he gave without asking for anything in return, only that justice be served, that right be done, knowing that everyone matters. A man of few words, he expressed his inner life in his everyday actions, traveling a path of heart, giving wherever he met resonance in the world.

So, what’s it all about? I fully agree with my father. Life is just about choosing how to live and then living that life to the fullest, in whatever way is right for you.

Pass the butter,


Chuck’s Place: Finding the Way Back Home

I don’t often encounter depressed feelings, but by Monday of this past week I was laden with the weight of the futility of the national political civil war. I’d been in the world too long; I needed to find my way home.

Whenever I connect to the moment, that final moment of life in the body, feeling my energy body separate and lift for the last time from my physical body, I am treated to such a different perspective. All that seemed so important, worth fighting for but a moment ago, becomes actually light and even humorous. The relativity, the transitoriness of all that was once held so dear, melts into a glow of loving compassion. All that matters really, for all of us, is the infinite journey and what comes next.

As I struggled Monday to find my way home, to the perspective of this final moment, I turned to my old trusty friend, the I Ching, for counsel. The I Ching tells me I’ve been treading on the tail of the tiger. Fortunately, this tiger is so caught off guard; it bites not and heads for the hills!

Path of Heart

The tiger symbolizes wild, intractable people—the kind I wrote about in last week’s blog, those currently energized with evil energy. I broke my vow of detachment and ventured into that energy field. It didn’t bite back, but its negativity caught me unaware. It’s a world of ego gamesmanship, a world that separates me from my spirit. Without my spirit, even for a day, I feel like I could die! I have no interest in dying, but in my innocence I strayed. This, according to the I Ching, is not correct conduct: walking can be carefree, but ought not be naive.

The I Ching suggests I return to the calm and level way of the lonely sage. “He remains withdrawn from the bustle of life, seeks nothing, asks nothing of anyone, and is not dazzled by enticing goals.” —Wilhelm translation.

This is coming home: the egoless clarity of the moment of death. Finally, I am counseled to look where I walk, to look into what will be favorable and turn toward it to find great fortune. In essence, to turn toward what makes me happy, for that is the right path. For me, this is alignment with that final moment of separation: a path of heart, the warrior’s path, a being who is going to die.

When it comes to finding the way back home, turn toward that which truly makes you happy. Here you will find your path, a path of heart; follow your bliss.

From home,

Back in 1969 Blind Faith’s Can’t Find My Way Home resonated with my spirit. Check out this early video and then in 2007 Steve Winwood and Eric Clapton got together and sang it again.

Can\'t Find My Way Home—1969
Can\'t Find My Way Home—2007

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