Shine the Divine:

Creativity IS a Spiritual Practice

When we see through our hearts, we recognize that every single one of us is infused with creativity. Divine Sparks are embedded in everyone and everything. It's up to us to be courageous, to look and listen deeply, to find the sparks, gather and release them back into the universe, transformed into something new. Join me as we wake up to the sacred-ordinary blessings waiting to greet us each and every day.


Monday, January 4, 2010

Word for 2010: Awareness

Looking through my posts I noticed that the word I used most for a tag since I began blogging nearly two years ago was...AWARENESS...and of course I didn't realize it until I stopped to look!!!

Awareness. Awareness of my inner world...of the slightly larger world that is my body...the next step beyond that, my family...the view from the windows of my house...the window to the world that blogging has become for me.

What am I aware of in this moment?

sound of the pellet stove
tingling sensation in my right foot
tension in my jaw-releasing it
breath entering my nostrils
lungs filling-slight catch/stop at top of inhalation
relaxing exhaling
light pouring in through my closed lids
from the left
dog settling onto the couch
on the right
doctors to call
for me
appointments to make
so much organizing
back to my breath
sound of the pellet stove
steady companion
soothing, rhythmic
fan spinning
return to breath
aware of this shift back to breath
so aware
constant distractions
waves of distractions
maybe not
maybe just observing what is
relaxing exhale
breathing in
how odd to be typing with closed eyes
how amazing that my fingers remember
typos to change later I'm sure
thinking again
it's a process
it's ok
I'm ok
tingling in right foot
hot/cold all at once
breathing in
sad and still ok
still ok
opening eyes
new awarenesses flooding my eyes, mind
returning to the room

Awareness watches the return to self, to loved ones, the space in which I am dwelling, others in the world in need of assistance, respect, love, compassion.

Awareness observes the return to whatever shows up. Awareness sees me choosing, choosing where to direct my attention. Sometimes. Sometimes my attention my is hijacked. There is no controlling it, at first. And then redirection is possible, briefly. Awareness is constantly witnessing all of this.

Awareness is like the afternoon sun breaking through winter storm clouds. Photography is a vehicle for me...a meditative practice in the art of paying attention. It is way to focus on the subtleties of light, shadow, shape, object, negative space, relationships. Beauty...sometimes. Mystery...always. Photography allows me to be present to a specific moment. Awareness reminds me that the moment is disappearing. The moment is a gift. Awareness is a gift. Observing the sun breaking through winter storm clouds...a gift.

What are you aware of in this moment?

If you are interested in Jan Lundy's 28 day Meditation Challenge click here


  1. Laura,
    I love your awareness ramblings. I think this is an excellent exercise for many things: awareness, yes, but also deep listening, noticing how opinionated we are about things, appreciation, even comfort. I was doing this exercise is a very noisy airport once, just listening, and I marveled at how detached I could become from my opinions (negative) about traveling and crowds and noise. I settled into the beingness of it and it was a marvelous experience. I saw everyone in a new light too. Everyone just like me....

    I hope you are enjoying a bit more peace and quiet at home and will adjust with all going back to work and school. Or is it more difficult? Sending you love.

  2. Great thoughts, and great awareness!
    I think awareness is the key for us to live in the present, to live and exist in the now, which I happen to think is the key to happiness.
    I am still to master this fully (or at all), but I am getting glimpses, clear moments, like the ones you mentioned with the sun breaking through clouds.
    Closing your eyes and just focus and feeling, is a great way of bringing on this awareness, of listening to the body.
    I work as a massage therapist, and the one thing I notice with people who have regular massages is that their body awareness increases.

  3. I love that you did that in a crowded airport! Your experience seems like deep listening that became sacred seeing. Every moment of every day offers us a chance to step fully into love and awareness.

    As things would have it, Belin was home from school today because her arm/shoulder/neck is really painful again and Gordon worked from not so much alone time...but it was pretty quiet anyway...all of us doing our own thing. I did find time to do a self guided relaxation/awareness practice from the tips of my toes to the top of my head...getting in touch with body sensation and emotions this afternoon. That was healing for me today.

    It is a conflicted feeling for me...longing for self care time and knowing how much I miss everyone when I'm home alone. It will be ok. Thanks for asking.

  4. Excellent reminder to stop and take in the moment. I am aware that I should be folding laundry, making dinner, putting away dishes... and yet I'm here.

  5. What a wonderful reminder of this simple act, and how much joy it brings.

  6. Time. Under everything, I am always aware of time - how much I have until some deadline, how much is passing, calculating, compromising. Always time.

  7. Awareness - it has so many layers. Our physical awareness, our spiritual awareness...but when you stop to listen and look it's amazing what you learn about yourself and your surroundings in just the moment it takes to actually be aware.

    I hope 2010 is a lovely year for you and your family, Laura.

  8. I believe we all spiritual beings and our awareness of the world around us is the biggest gift we have been given. What a beautiful post and a lovely blog.;)
    Thank you so much for your kind visit and words, wishing you a prosperous 2010,

  9. exactly Cookie, Leslie, Mama Zen, Talon, Zuzana...we often believe we are too busy to take any time to "slow down" but bringing attention to the minutia of our lives is exactly where we can find this illusive time for renewal..through the simplest acts done with awareness. We are indeed spirit filled beings and every moment offers a gift...even the difficult ones.

    Bright blessings to you all,

  10. Since the new year I have been aware of the thoughts I have and my reactions to other people and situations. In trying to start a meditation practice, where thoughts intrude nonstop, I have become aware of the thoughts I have all. the. time. It is exhausting to try to stop the thoughts, but that is no more exhausting than the constant thinking. If awareness is the first step, I am on my way.

  11. Sharon, instead of trying to "stop" the thoughts (which as you say is also exhausting) how about just noting them..."oh, thought" return to breath..."hmmm thinking"...back to breath again. Not nearly as much effort...Plus...the truth is you can't stop the thoughts...minds think, they are supposed to do that! But, it is possible to recognize "ahh thinking" without becoming entangled in the story of the thought...not always, but more and more often. Allow that "awareness of thinking" to be the signal to return to breath or what ever your point of contemplation/stillness/focus happens to be. Let the thought-return-thought-return process be like waves on the ocean...can't stop the waves...swimming against them is infinitely exhausting...but we can rest and ride upon them.

    The main thing to remember here Sharon dear is that this is a never needs to be perfect...just practice and know that that is enough.

  12. Thank you, Laura. In the past, this has been the point at which I give up trying to meditate. I would try for a few days, get frustrated, and give it up until I found a reason to try again.

    This time I am taking the word "practice" literally and have made the commitment to keep at it. The difference is people like you and Jan and others who are helping me find my way. I will not give up this time.

  13. Sharon,
    Sacred community offers the sanctuary we all need to practice, fall, stand up again or sit down again and fall toward our own Divine place of healing within. I'm so happy to be part of this sacred community:)

  14. Hello Laura and Sharon,
    I am so glad that the two of you (and us lurkers!) are talking about this subject. Support, whenever we start any new practice, is key. That is why I am so grateful for all the mentors I have had over the years. They shared their boundless wisdom and were always there to cheerlead when I needed it most. Today I am blessed to have another teacher with whom I am working in a new capacity (she is a meditation teacher) and new pathways are forged every time we connect. I continue to be amaze how, if are single-minded of purpose, as you seem to be Sharon, our passion is somehow transmitted "out there" so we get the help we need " in here."

    Hang in there, Sharon, it will get easier. It is ALL about commitment and practice. :-) And Laura, you are such a treasure trove of love and support. Thank you for being here to guide all of us. I am so glad we are connected....

  15. What a fun way to find out what you are writing about the most!
    And I love the word "awareness".


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