The Blog Frontier

Blog hesitant, that’s what I was. Resistant, rather.

To begin with, I’ve never really cared for the word ‘blog’: the sound, texture, energy of it seems all wrong to me, stuck somewhere between ‘blah’ and ‘log’. Not exactly inspiring.

Then there’s the fact that I’m a bit old fashioned (in far too many ways to elucidate in a concise sentence), and I do most of my writing longhand in a notebook using a fountain pen. Unless I’m sending an email, I’m not generally one to sit at the computer for my compositions.

Actually, my favorite spot to write is sitting cross-legged on the floor, my back resting teacupagainst the couch for support, writing at the low coffee table—usually a pot of fragrant tea placed beside me, along with my favorite blue and white cup from England. This approach to wordsmithing is much more embodied for me (pelvis open rather than closed in a chair), and I find that my writing emerges from a grounded place and speaks with a different voice.

I have to admit that I’m not one to actively read or follow blogs, nor go in search of those worthy examples that clearly refute my judgments, but at the risk of sounding like a critic (which I honestly endeavor not to be) it seems to me that a great deal of what’s posted is mostly just empty calories of information, saying little of real relevance. Blogs can easily become merely machinations (masturbation?) for the ego.

And yet, here I am… finally crossing the ‘blog frontier,’ as it were, and placing the long dreaded ‘blah-log’ on my website. It wouldn’t normally be my first choice but I accept that the world is changing (rapidly), and that the various forms of ‘new media’ can hold a deeper value than simply entertainment (or mere distraction). Especially when trying to reach a large number of people (which I am), the power of the Internet is unrivaled… so I guess that it’s time that I emerge from my cave on the mountain.

There’s something to be said for willingness. A great deal, actually.

Willingness is an expansive state, one that opens us to possibility. I’m talking here about sincere willingness, not a grudging, grumbling, passive aggressive sort where we are really just dragging our feet and carrying a heavy burden. In every moment of every day, we have a choice: we can be open and expansive, or closed and restricted. One cannot be both simultaneously. Put another way, we can’t have growth and security.

As evolutionary beings, our primary task is to continually say ‘yes’ to the opportunities that enlarge us, that steer us into places of development and change. Often these passages are uncomfortable and difficult, and yet it is through exceeding our limits and previously held boundaries that we expand and transform into a larger, more authentic version of ourselves.

That’s where I am with blogging, really. Saying ‘yes’ to it and stepping into a new arena, trusting that somehow this offers another avenue for sharing my soul work. Hoping, too, that I have something to say of relevance to the seeking soul… but of course I do. I’ve just completed a four-hundred page manuscript on Eros, the Sacred Masculine, soul, creativity and embodiment; and since it’s still seeking its publisher and subsequent audience, some of those words can filter down and float out through my fingertips through a keyboard to a blog.

So here I sit, perched at my computer on its little desk while rocking back and forth on a large FitBall that serves as my chair. Currently, I reside on Maui, ensconced in a lovely (albeit a bit funky) little cottage high on the slopes of Haleakalā, the island’s 10,000 ft (3,050m) dormant volcano. Though I generally write elsewhere in the house or outside, my office space is upstairs in a loft accessed by a carpeted ladder, and illuminated by a massive skylight through which I look up at the trees… or stars.

Today, all the doors to the house are open to a brilliant summer day and I can hear a gentle breeze moving through the surrounding eucalyptus trees. Having recently taken the dogs for their morning walk up the road, my body feels open and energized, almost humming, and that is always the very best state for me from which to create. Write. Anything, really. When we are open, our “life force” (chi, prana, mana) flows; when we’re closed, we’re mostly just stuck.

We are each ‘soul artists.’ That is to say, we are born with the birthright and potential to be one. Our soul’s blueprint, if you will, is for us to develop into an authentically creative beings. We begin our lives this way as children: innocent, tactile, and inherently creative. Our creative essence radiates outward to encounter, explore and interact with the world around us. As we grow and mature, however, we begin to actively contain this innately creative impulse, layering it over with character strategies and defenses, protected places that hold woundings, restrictive patterns in body and breath, and slowly forming a shell of armor.

Each of us has a unique gift to offer to our community, our ‘tribe’ (human and otherwise), and the world. The mission in life is to discover and embody that offering. Essential to our task is the willingness to be open and to emerge from the shell; to risk ridicule, criticism, defeat and failure… or success. We must heed dreams and follow curious allurements, willing to stray from the well-trodden path into uncharted landscapes. It requires courage, too. No one embodies their soul’s passion without risk and courage. Put simply, we must be open; we must have a willingness to expand into unfamiliar areas and facets of self, to explore non-habitual options for movement and response.

It seems fair to say that most of us quickly become creatures of habit. There is a certain comfort in familiarity and routine. Yet we can also find ourselves root bound in our clay pot, ceasing to grow or bear fruit. In the barrage of stimulus that constantly assaults us – television, radio, commercials, traffic, city noise, sirens, alarms – our senses have largely tuned out. As we become desensitized and dulled, as we slowly settle into our domestic life of busy-ness and details, life becomes stagnant. Our ‘life force’ has ceased to flow or enliven us, and our familiar patterns keep us tightly held.

So, what to do?

To begin with, take a deep breath. Oxygenate your cells. Move around a bit (or a lot), allowing your body to stretch and rediscover movement. Stand barefoot on the earth and let yourself root down into listening and feeling. Close your eyes. Open your senses. Ask yourself, what are you most resisting in your life right now? And how do you note that resistance in your body… what is the sensation of it? Perhaps it is a tightness in the jaw, a clenching in the abdomen or buttocks, a feeling of a scream just under the skin… maybe a little bit of all of these.

After noting what your resistance feels like in the body, consider two options: how does this pattern serve you (for your resistance is certainly a pattern, whether conscious or not); and what might you gain (or lose) if you surrendered that resistance…?

For me, my resistance to blogging—which I note mostly as a caving in and collapse in my chest, like a heavy weight—arose partly from my comfort. I was quite content with my old, simple website and not being part of the online discussion world. And as I’ve noted, there were some inner judgments or criticisms about blogs, rolling noisily around in my head. Yet truthfully, neither one of those patterns serves my evolution as a Soul Artist and it was time to relinquish them.

It’s not yet clear to me what this ‘Soul Artist’ blog will reveal or contain in the future, nor how often I’ll show up at the computer to type something new to post. Who knows. I’ve dipped my toe in the unfamiliar waters (doesn’t seem too chilly yet), perhaps I’ll dive fully in. Beyond the words offered forward, what matters in my own world is that I have again recognized an area of resistance and decided to “lean into” it, instead. Almost without fail, whenever I do this, I unexpectedly discover myself in a new room that I never knew or suspected existed. My world gets bigger.

Gentle reader, here’s hoping that in your day, you inhale a deep breath and make the choice to expand into possibility rather than shrink back into the comfort of the known, familiar and worn. In doing so, you offer a bit more of your authentic self – your soul – to the world. Don’t hold back. We’re waiting for your song.