September – October 2020 — Shamanic Meditation Studies  (Open Awareness)
I plan to hold our October Meeting on Saturday October 17 at 3 pm Arizona (6 pm eastern) time.
Please continue to make the time and space to Just Watch life flow through you during your busy day. Each day this month, invest at least 5 minutes without filtering life through a personal point of view.
Whenever I notice myself tense up in uncertain and divisive and times like these, I find it critical to make the choice to relax and open up the aperture of my awareness. There are three places in my physical being where that tension with life appears – my toes, fingers, and third eye. Knowing that, I make a conscious effort to relax into the tension that I feel in those areas.
The relaxed feel of undivided attention on the knot of tension reveals a free-flowing Consciousness, beyond the purview of the body/mind. That is when I am open to other transitory realms of existence (Bardo States) –  Consciousness beyond the material world. It is not a matter of going there, but making more room for there and here to converge.
We once thought and believed that the world was flat; we now know otherwise.  We also believed that consciousness does not survive bodily death; that certainly does not match my experiences. Check it out from the Dreamer's perspective – Open Awareness. Let go of all you believe you know…
Please post what you experience or don't experience…



39 Responses to “September – October 2020 -– Shamanic Meditation Studies (Open Awareness)”

  1. on 17 Oct 2020 at 5:13 am missy

    Thank you Joe and Betty for that conversation, made me smile, “Enjoy it damn it!” The day I wrote Here that I will let life flow through even more, was one crazy filled, and fun day, but as Betty said , I did Enjoy it! even tho it was filled with Lots of Doing and I see now how that then opened into even more and more doors to let it flow. From dropping my car off for flat tire repair(which couldn’t be fixed) to winter tires going on to so many conversations throughout the day, starting there with service check in, to the nice young man shuttle driving, to tea with a friend catching up after a very long time, to wandering around Montpelier which was having a Montpelier Madness shopping local spree with fun incentives like music on the street!, to going with a friend At 2 pm to look at a possible small future house for sale for her… Not to mention the weather was incredibly Delicious, and I realize now that the house was not why we really went!

    We both were filled with the drive to a classic VT town, still dressed with Fall color on old Maples, and we met my other friend who had a key, but she started us by meeting in the center of Brookfield on the floating Bridge which is iconic and full of history, even for my own mother, I had forgotten till I stood there… all day long these things were shown to me, I knew it was a strong Moon too, but so much continued on with the day I found myself just smiling at the end as I looked back at all that Life will show us if we just show up. Namaste.

  2. on 16 Oct 2020 at 2:26 pm Betty

    Joe: I really enjoyed your comments about the "wonderment of the ordinary" and I laughed when I recognized in myself those times when I made a chore out of something that is meant to be enjoyed! My version: Step one: find something fun to do. Step two: Enjoy it, damn it! (How not to have a good time.)

  3. on 16 Oct 2020 at 2:21 pm Betty

    As with the others, I do have 5 minute (or longer) breaks throughout the day when I take a break from the doing mode (making it a chore as Joe said) or the thinking mode, the mode of commenting (as Russ said) on what is happening in the moment. Sometimes it is intentional because the suffering has become so intense. I feel the heaviness of separation and stop and open up to the non-doing even as I am in the midst of a task. Sometimes something stops me and pulls me into "flow" as Joe so aptly put it.

    Being stopped and pulled into the flow (as others have related) has been happening to me as far back as I can remember. But now I understand what is happening and what is not happening and which is real and everlasting (truth and unchanging and which is temporary, finite, illusion. In this particular time I find it absolutely necessary to take time out to realize the love, support, connection,clarity and the peace that is always available to me and breath a sigh of relief that life is a very realistic illusion from which we can learn our lessons but should not be taken so seriously that we forget who we really are.

  4. on 16 Oct 2020 at 12:30 pm Russ

    I find at least 5 minutes a day with no comment.

  5. on 16 Oct 2020 at 9:57 am sasanijjs

    Magic eye books have been a huge ally when I need help with the feeling of stillness.

  6. on 16 Oct 2020 at 9:56 am Diane

    The other day while mired in doubt and obsessive thinking while driving a Red Tail Hawk flew right in front of my windshield stopping all my stinking thinking bringing me back to the present! What a gift. In that moment I knew all was well and as it should be!

  7. on 16 Oct 2020 at 7:34 am sasanijjs

    When I am dropping a personal point of view I am able to take in the wonderment that is in the “ordinary”. While in Maine this past weekend, I really enjoyed watching the leaves move down the river. Time only existed when I made a chore out of something that is meant to be enjoyed. In a previous session, the invitation to relax clicked with me particularly during energy work. Instead of making everything into a task, why not sit back and let life flow? I have noticed the deeper my commitment is to letting go of my belief systems the more willing Joe is to take in life peacefully. There really are a lot of “that really doesn’t make sense” when living a life as a separate sense of self.

  8. on 15 Oct 2020 at 7:30 am Diane

    My 5 mini turned into I guess was 20 as a hummingbird landed on a plant on my patio and simply looked at me the whole time. We bonded so beautifully lost in each other as one! I had never thought a hummingbird could stay so still for so long, and me too!

  9. on 15 Oct 2020 at 5:42 am missy

    My 5 minutes becomes many when I stop at my art table and get lost. I can only show you through my paintings what is said. Perhaps my standing still behind the Gallery counter at work or walking through town I will allow it to flow even more without any agenda, see what if anything is different … in nature it’s much easier on a walk, but today I will go through life as it goes through me, thank you for mentioning to go deeper….

  10. on 14 Oct 2020 at 7:31 pm Braveheart

    I hold tension in my jaw, neck and shoulders. Sometimes it feels like I am driving on the highway, shoulders pulled up to my ears, driving fast and watching out for the cars that dart in and out of my lane. Mind and body bringing in time, holding worry, judgement and tension. Perpetuating a lack of awareness. Dropping the point of view is like pulling off the highway, getting out of the car and standing in the quiet grass. Shoulders drop, time stops, noise fades, quiet surrounds me. Time stopped this week, while chasing a toddler. I looked down and right by my foot was a four leaf clover. It seemed to glow, asking to be seen, inviting me to stop and see/be. Timeless time stretched, the green of the clover patch became more vivid as I reached down for the clover. Taking it in, I slowly counted the leaves, feeling the connection. Slowly I looked up. The toddler was in the same spot. He hadn’t moved. Clearly, what felt timeless to me, was only a second or two in ordinary reality.

  11. on 14 Oct 2020 at 10:10 am Keshav Howe

    I admit to being disappointed by the lack of input regarding the challenge to invest 5 minutes: allowing life to flow through us, without being filtered through a personal point of view. Such a simple gesture is life changing. And, yet…

  12. on 14 Oct 2020 at 8:27 am Donna

    My noticeable areas of tension are in my feet and lower back…and my head if we are counting the chaos that goes on up there. That chaos tends to echo out in the need to be doing something. I seem to have gotten into a whirlpool of doing. My twin sister and my brother in law we’re just here in Tucson visiting for a long weekend and it took over a day for me to relax body and mind. It was uncomfortable and challenging. Just as I was experiencing coming down to Earth it was time for them to leave and me to go back into working. I am doing my best to relax and to have there and here to converge.

  13. on 13 Oct 2020 at 9:45 am Keshav Howe

    Yes, we are meeting this Saturday!

  14. on 13 Oct 2020 at 7:06 am missy

    Am I correct to think we are meeting this Saturday? Namaste .

  15. on 13 Oct 2020 at 7:04 am missy

    Last Thursday the Himilayan bowl playing was ethereal? It created a tingling in my fingers and toes, and I was holding my Peruvian seed rattle which reminded Me of being in Keshav’s living room in CT when the rattles started to rattle on the floor during healing circle. The circle I saw on Thursday was a metallic Light green around us, connecting us, and all week it’s been showing up in my sketches and paintings. I sense the brass Bowls energy still circulating the incredible vibration, modulating Out and in, around, up, and down, while working with healing this Very spacious world. Namaste. Love.

  16. on 08 Oct 2020 at 11:18 am missy

    A book that was written when I was 1 year old, has found itself Off our shelves, a bit bedraggled, into my studio time…. not sure it ever has been read by me, but it has definitely been read many times by others as the tape on the spine proves. Now’s the time; all ready the first 2 pages have grasped my full attention so here I go! The Dharma Bums, Jack Kerouac …

  17. on 07 Oct 2020 at 4:34 pm Betty

    I would like to thank Keshav for pointing out the most imperative part of that song. The bells of truth need to be rung more than ever before. With the number of politicians who think lying is all a part of the game, those who still cherish truth above all need to ring our bells. The quality of our lives as citizens are at stake.

  18. on 07 Oct 2020 at 2:10 pm Betty

    In our last group I mentioned that we should not take anything personally. And that is true. But another member reminded me that you should look to see if you can find what was said in yourself, then be informed or reminded and address that part of you. The point is, for me, if it was said in a harsh way, the harshness has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the other. And taking it personally, as in feeling attacked or offended, is not helpful to anyone. We are here as mirrors for one another. What I see in “you” is undoubtedly something that I can relate to in “me.” This is how we learn. On a deeper level, we are all one, and without the illusion of separation there is no “me” and “other.”

  19. on 05 Oct 2020 at 12:19 pm Diane

    Ah! The crack in the liberty bell has new meaning for me! Such a symbol of freedom and the message for me is to let the light in even if it’s only a crack of light! It’s not a flaw and even if it is it is perfect and has a place !

  20. on 01 Oct 2020 at 5:13 am Braveheart

    I have a special spot in my heart for children. When so many were tragically lost in Newtown years ago, there was so much sadness, confusion and anger. My heart broke. Then I remembered something Mister Rogers shared – in times crisis and fear, to look for the helpers, they are always there. I couldn't change what had happened but I could help, I could heal, I could choose kindness. I can't tell you the number of years it has been but I every fall, I find twenty six extra ways to help. Little random acts of kindness…leaving a quarter in a bubble gum machine, shoveling a driving, sharing a smile. They may seem like a small things but they make a difference even if the difference is to me.

    Right now, the country is in crisis. I'll remember Mr. Rogers' words – look for the helpers and help even more. Last week I asked for healing energy and prayers for my sister in law, Deb. Although she finished chemo a few months ago, we just found out that the cancer is back. Without knowing the outcome, Donna shared these powerful words. "May fear not distract her and love be her guiding light." Words that rival Mr. Roger's. Words fitting for my sister in law's situation, words fitting mine. Words fitting all of us. Thank you Donna for my new mantra.

  21. on 30 Sep 2020 at 4:34 pm Keshav Howe

    My dream journey during last Thursday's drumming was part of a sequence of explorations into the unknown. The first part of the dream journey has been experienced through the body/mind of a dove. Similar to being clueless about how to move my human finger, I instinctively know how to fly, and land.
    Two subtle and shimmering beings have taken me for a walk down a rapidly flowing stream. The feel of balancing a bird brain, with a human brain, and the brain of a light being, turns the stream into a whirlpool of all. It feels like a dismemberment – experiencing birth, while dying. To be continued… 

  22. on 28 Sep 2020 at 3:44 pm Keshav Howe

    Betty, thank you again for the Leonard Cohen "offering." The first two lines of his Anthem stir a balanced sense of peace and urgency within me.
    "Ring the bells that still can ring; Forget your perfect offering"
    For me, it is a clear reminder for me to ring that bell of truth – that reminds me that we are all here to evolve; to dream a more conscious dream. And, to stand up, and say no to greed and indifference right here and now (starting with me). I am reminded of how important it is for me to demand that peace, love, justice, and equality to come to me; call of the time bound search for nothing.
    Coming to terms with my own insecurities and doubts is the proving ground. I can change my relationship with this ordinary reality dream by making room for divinity to appear. To stand my ground in the here and now. To know that the old me needs to die for the new me to thrive.
    It is critical for me to recognize how hard it is for any and all to evolve, as we burn off our "personal karma." The ringing of the bells celebrates the call for change on all levels of Consciousness. "There is a crack in everything." Ring. Ring…
    Make peace with your/our evolution by opening to Peace in each and every moment (as much as we can stand). We are all doing the best we can.
    Thank you all for keeping the lights on. It shows.

  23. on 27 Sep 2020 at 6:05 pm Keshav Howe

    Thank you Betty. I just posted it on my YouTube site. What a gentle soul he is!

  24. on 27 Sep 2020 at 2:52 pm Betty

    I was listening to random music while I did my chores today and Leonard Cohen’s “Anthem” played. When it got to “forget your perfect offering, there is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in,” I had to laugh that our egos always want to create perfection, and we can’t as humans are all made with cracks, and when we have to come to grips with our lack of perfection, when life is not perfection, that is, indeed, is when the light gets in.

  25. on 27 Sep 2020 at 1:49 pm Russ

    "That is when I am open to other transitory realms of existence (Bardo States) – Consciousness beyond the material world. It is not a matter of going there, but making more room for there and here to converge." – I so envy your wordsmithing geniusness and I really appreciate your point.

  26. on 24 Sep 2020 at 12:13 pm missy

    I was processing some tomatoes in my barn, and my awareness noticed crows cawing after a few Real noisy caws, and that was not something I had been hearing so I awoke and went out to see and I felt the energy of a true murder of crows, flying across and down the road , some landing on the one Apple tree and continuing down the road, and they all ,40-50, landed In the road making quite a ruckus and I got so excited to witness this and of course then my dog thought she should run to watch too, and we scared them to fly into the woods. Migrating I suppose but it was so cool to be a witness to their journey somewhere. I got a chill. Namaste crows.

  27. on 23 Sep 2020 at 5:18 pm Braveheart

    Keshav and all, thanks for keeping the light on.
    Thank you for holding the space and for the loving support. Love merging with the chants – no where to go and no-thing to do. Heart opens. Physical form drops away. Namaste.

  28. on 21 Sep 2020 at 6:05 am Keshav Howe

    I really enjoyed sitting in circle with you on Saturday. For me, it is reassuring to know that we are all dealing with the same issues. And, that we are actively working to dream a new dream rooted in acceptance and loving kindness. Thank you for being clear mirrors.
    I love you all.

  29. on 15 Sep 2020 at 12:14 pm Keshav Howe

    Thank you Lori!!

  30. on 15 Sep 2020 at 12:04 pm Braveheart

    Happy Birthday Keshav!!!

  31. on 13 Sep 2020 at 10:13 pm Betty

    Tonight I felt a particular need to feel connection so I played Keshav’s “Om Mani Padme Hum” Playlist using a head set and enjoyed the video that went with the first. (I saw what appeared to be grass and it reminded me of Keshav’s horse tail plant, that one night shot out a beam of light which I was apparently tuned into the right channel to see.) As time went on I felt vibrations in my feet, and then up to my knee, and then above my knee. It felt as if the cells in my body were vibrating and taking in energy from the sound and from the words themselves. I ended feeling peace and connection.

  32. on 13 Sep 2020 at 11:28 am Keshav Howe

    Lori: I find that allowing for explorations into the soul of our collective culture exposes the purity of spirit that can never truly be forgotten. Any mindful celebration of the loving kindness that holds us together is a blessing.
    It is such a simple community based gesture to share what we experience when we consciously choose to see life through the eyes of wonderment!

  33. on 12 Sep 2020 at 9:42 pm Keshav Howe

    Lori: I’ll see you in Delta later tonight!! Thank you for sharing your YouTube selections.

  34. on 12 Sep 2020 at 9:33 pm Braveheart

    Been singing “Om Mani Padme Hum” during the day. Does help calm mind and body. A lot of fear and depression coming up lately and chants and different playlists songs help me be present. Thank you for updating your playlists. It amazes me that I will either hear a song in my mind or will be looking for a particle song, only to find it added to your playlist. The other night, I couldn’t sleep. After two hours, I remembered the Delta Sleep cd you shared years ago. I looked online by only found a ten minute version and woke every time the music stopped. I noticed today that you added a nice long delta sleep. As it is after midnight, perfect time to listen. Thank you!

  35. on 11 Sep 2020 at 5:26 pm Keshav Howe

    I invite you all to listen to the "Om Mani Padme Hum" playlist on my You Tube Channel. Put on your best set of head phones and chant along for the 29 minutes.
    Please post what you experience. Come out and play!!!! The only thing to lose is 29 minutes of ordinary reality. This will be on the test.

  36. on 11 Sep 2020 at 12:36 pm Keshav Howe

    Om Mani Padme Hum is my favorite chant. Whenever I chant it (it chanting me), I am more open to receive life’s invitation to stop filtering it through a personal point of view.

  37. on 11 Sep 2020 at 7:00 am missy

    9/11/2020. 9/10/01 was where I went last night during Om Mane Padmi Hum chanting , Feeling so much compassion for all those on the night before, having no idea …I was planning my parents memorial service on the Cape and staying in our old house that night, supposedly meeting a Army Veterans Service Dept the next morning to get a plaque on my fathers gravestone for 10th mountain… never happened once we heard the F-16s take off out of Otis Air Force base on the Cape and turned on the news…
    I told Keshav that a few mornings ago we figured out a Bear had been in our barn, turned over the trash can and stole a whole bag of kitchen trash!! which after much searching I located it way up in the woods line edge above the horse pasture, it had had a nice picnic! No more horses to scare them away… I tell you this too because I sat last nite over where the bear had been.. compassionate delicate delightful Peaceful beings…
    Lastly, we had an email This morning our Niece is in labor today! So I wish Ashley and Putnam many blessings on their first baby girl to be born Healthy and full of Grace. Namaste. Love.

  38. on 06 Sep 2020 at 11:36 pm Betty

    Thank you, Keshav.
    It has been my understanding that the information that some people assume is somehow stored in the brain is actually stored in consciousness. People who have had near death experiences, report having experienced consciousness when they are technically brain dead. So what you are saying makes sense to me. I, too, wish to focus on our oneness and and divinity. I love it when we are together and I am aware of community which I know is always there and only my idea of separation stands in the way of that knowing.

  39. on 06 Sep 2020 at 5:44 pm Keshav Howe

    Sometimes when birds fly towards, or near me, I fly. I don't have wings or feathers, but I directly experience the joy of flight. I have virtually no access to visualizations of past lives, but there is vivid "memory" of the experience of flying.
    There is also a conscious awareness that my current human body/mind has on-going access to "non-human" psychic abilities. They are only labeled as paranormal because of the assumption that our brains create consciousness. However, what if Consciousness is not a derivative of our human brains?
    I am fully aware of a Consciousness Awareness (Dreamer) that survives bodily death. I am also aware that we are all connected as parts of that Universal Consciousness playing a game of hide and seek. My connection with my male and female eagle spirit guides has always been about finding a balance between male and female energies, human and non-human expressions of form, and striking a fine balance between emptiness and form.
    I am grateful to look at someone new and feel the connection. I feel that way about us. Rather than getting mired down in our petty surface differences, I find peace in focusing awareness on what holds us together; at the core.
    I promise to keep my eyes open to the divinity within us all…

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