My heart is opening again.

I’ve become accustomed to this ever deepening, ever tender movement.

And yet I’m always astounded (all over again) that there’s more. Which is ridiculous because I teach that existence is limitless. Further evidence we are only ever students teaching ourselves.

These openings never fail to feel like a mix of raw astonishment, tender free-fall and fish-knives to arteries when I’m in the middle of them.

I remember those boys at school who used to turn their eyelids inside out and chase me around with their arms out screaming like the boogie man. The tender pink flesh from inside their eyes…outside.
My whole system feels like that during these heart opening phases.
The tender pink flesh of me exposed – to the seasons and the elements.
It’s as if every piercing drop of dew lands right in the centre of me, in slow motion…and with the impact of a sweet bullet.

my heart
is stretch marked
and strong

Yet when I go through these phases of deeper and deeper heart-opening, it’s no exaggeration to say that every breath feels like it could undo me.
And when I say undo, I mean exquisite unravelling. Which is at times foreign, strange.

All existence enters deeper and deeper inside this space – this me/not me/we.
And can the vessel tolerate this level of openness? This level of intimacy with everything? I don’t know. I simply have to choose to keep opening. Each breath tells me I’m still “here.”

I sit in stillness that feels like loudness.
Hours feel like minutes.
Birds and ether and wind and the way a tree bends toward light.
The Standing Silent Nations – all around me. Rocks, trees, creatures.
The way light reminds us we are all full spectrum.

In these moments God is my body and I am that.
Everything falls to such deep stillness and silence it’s almost terrifying except that it’s nothing. It feels like longing…for nothing.
Longing that has no wish to be satiated.
It doesn’t make sense.
It’s not about sense.
Sense becomes irrelevant. Laughable.
Madness, so sensible.

My heart is on the rack. Being stretched wider and wider still by the hand of God.
The only pulse, existence. Which enters through my guts, my forehead, my chest – and becomes it.
Can I walk as this?
With nerve endings out and veins opened and atom/particle/wave – splayed?
I think I can.
All it needs is the next step.

“Take this flesh, open it wider still. Use it for your will.”

a pilgrim
walks her prayers

she walks the answer

somewhere within the despair
and sweet longing
of being human

the meaning of life
is a rhetorical question

—we answer
with every step.

and we only know life,
if we’re willing
to know



If we live with curiosity and courage we die over and over within one life. Versions of ourselves morph and shape shift. Bodies buried in the yard of us.

Sometimes we shed skin easily, but so often there’s a wrestle. We don’t want to lose things or people, roles, jobs, places, ideas, shields. And yet if we don’t die to what we WERE, we can’t ever know the fullness of what we ARE.

Like a cicada walking out of an old shell, our emergence depends on letting go. As some Native American tribes were known for saying “today is a good day to die”

Whatever is happening in our lives now, is the calculus of our becoming. Nature teaches this evolution and renewal, if we have eyes to see.

If we want to hold even deeper love, we must first hold death.
This is sacred mess.
Profound process.

Still, we often subtly wrong-make ourselves or overtly despise ourselves when we’re not feeling pleasant or homed, or certain – always.

As if the sky should always be blue.

As if rain isn’t a baptism.

What if all this – the fear, the longing, the sweet sadness, the broken parts – are nothing more than perfect bounty?

What if we remember to
this breaking?

Not as fancy words, but quietly, truly.

When someone we love dies, we are allowed to grieve.

People understand this process, it makes sense to them. They wouldn’t dream of asking us not to feel – at least overtly. It can be demanded subtly.

And yet each of us endures many deaths, over and over throughout these magical – and sometimes deeply tender or outrightly shocking – lives.

Versions of ourselves die. Facets of existence that we once held solid, sacred and so very dear – fall away completely.

And for some of us, every reference point for any self is completely dissolved.

Death is perfect, sacred process.

Natures priority is not our comfort, it’s our emergence.

We are asked to burn into being in the fires of our lives – now.

Otherwise, we cannot birth the new expression of existence that wants to dance through us.

It’s not enough to have deep realisations about true nature. We are asked to embody that truth. After all, we can only give what we embody.

And as we embody what we have realised – what is now true for us – often there is attrition. Loss.
Except it’s not loss, it’s realignment.

Change – to bring us into deep resonance across our relationships, careers, homes, creativity. Every aspect of life is called into truth.

This realignment is as big, or as small, as the gap between how far from our truest expression we were before this emergence.

We talk a lot about the joy of awakening, about the bliss, deep sense of “all-is-well-ness” and the objectless, subject-less love that arises when we open and shift in these ways. But we don’t often talk about the grief. We deem it unenlightened or uncontained.

And yet wholeness includes all.

Oneness/non-duality – call it by any name – includes all by its very nature. Nothing is othered.

Love is the fabric of existence – and love includes all.

Yet we can be terrified of wholeness. The mind wants a “right” and a “wrong” that it can follow. So it knows it’s on the side of “okay, safe, right” – because it’s so afraid of not being enough, not being worthy or being left behind.

Wholeness is paradox. It cannot be shoehorned into any one way or another. Wholeness is “this AND that”

not “this OR that.”

Wholeness is wisdom – and wisdom is not knowing. The mind tries to “know” – the being understands.

Wisdom is sensed and experienced. Its Petri dish, is the ability to dwell in the mystery.

When we’re looking to know, what we’re really looking for is control. And we cannot control our way to peace and freedom.

When we traverse these deep portals of emergence – the foundations of all we are, and all we have learned to “know” about existence, ourselves and “other” are challenged.

Simply put – when the light comes, it spares nothing.

It asks us to meet, let go of, and clear anything in our lives that is not aligned with our deepest truth. Anything within us that is not yet free. Not yet true.

This is sacred process. It happens on its own. Just like a foetus becomes a baby without us “doing” it.

Our role is to open, make deep love with life, support growth with nutrients – but it grows, it becomes, of its own alchemy.

So too, our emergence. As our being shifts, form rearranges outside of us to reflect the changes inside of us. As within, so without.

Very often, the being is moving and the mind is frantically trying to catch up, to understand what is happening to it.

The intelligence required here, is love.

Holding the personality, compassionately as it moves through these places.

We are more than human.

AND we are also human.

It’s all true, all at once.

The ultimate self can tend the human in its suffering (and its joy). Supporting the personality to open and fall back into all the ways Grace is wanting to move through us – now.

The human grieves the different deaths it is traversing. Deep compassion and holding is needed here, to shepherd it through and help it let go into the sacred process it is undergoing.

The perpetual wink of the deep heart, belly laughs. It knows ALL is always well.

But the personality can grieve deeply, that which is falling away. This needs, and deserves deep care.

Like all of life, awakening contains everything.

Revelation, yes. Incredible awe and joy, freedom previously unthinkable – and also grief, shock, confusion. These are proportionate reactions of a perfectly functioning human system, that is being undone. Not a broken one.

This IS the path.

Spiritual maturity is becoming deeply human – through being more than human. Not discarding any part of existence, or denying any layer of reality.

We learn to pull spirit ever more deeply through flesh, that it may express here, lighting the world with its might.

We stop knowing if we are the dancers of “our lives” or simply being deeply deeply danced.

Love is often far more terrifying to receive for humans, than criticism or rage.

Often, we only accept the love we think we deserve.

A client raised a dynamic with me that she’s going through, and it also came up at a recent retreat I was at. It comes up a lot, for many.

When we enter these authentic states of expansion, there’s a lot of very natural objectless, subjectless love that arises.

Very genuine joy that bubbles from within and cannot be stopped.

We are lit, from the inside.

There’s a radiance we don’t own, couldn’t fake and can’t take away.

Others can assume this makes our lives easy. That we are some kind of beaming bliss-ball.

This is rarely true – but a very real lens we can be seen through all the same.

In my experience it is not the easy option to choose to be loving in a world that often equates love with one-dimensional weakness, bullshit falsity or plain saccharine foolishness.

Choosing to authentically shine can be the hardest decision we will ever make and maintain.

It takes an iron will and deep strength.

It requires a robust dedication to living what is true for us, despite the impact of that. It takes love that is so strong, it must be what it is.

Because light burns, as well as illuminates, no one is going to give us permission to be this free. To have the audacity, to love.

We give permission to ourselves.

Love, brings up everything in all of us that is not love, for release. And that can be confronting or even terrifying to be on the receiving end of.

It also brings up everything in us that cannot accept or receive love or does not feel worthy of love.

For example – if someone is loving us, but deep down we believe we are not worthy of love, we’ll hate their love. It’ll feel like vomit in our mouths. Completely uncomfortable. Foreign. Bullshit.

It’ll be read as either misguided and unintelligent (how could you possibly love me when I’m not loveable?), fake or insincere (you’re full of shit because I’m not loveable), foolish (you must be an idiot to love the unloveable) saccharine and immature (you’re only capable of love and light privileged pop spirituality – therefore I’ll deem you unlovable) or weak and un-nuanced (you’re bypassing the gritty parts of you because how could you love like this if you weren’t in some place of denial?).

All of this could be true, and it also might not be true. Depending on the being in front of us.

And even if any one facet of this is true, we can choose to love that too. It’s sacred process. And everyone’s process is to be honoured. We’re all rookies here.

After all, we can’t rip a caterpillar out of its cocoon early and get angry when it won’t turn into a butterfly. We stopped it’s process. And likely killed it. Every step in someone’s journey is sacred.

To shun light, simply for being light, is just as limited as shunning dark, simply for being dark.

Only when all of us is homed, is there wholeness in the system.

When we disavow any part of us – we are living in an internal duality that has to manifest “outside” of us.

Full spectrum living contains all.

Love is the fabric of existence – and love contains all.

Not a fluffy, giggly, saccharine love, but a deeply homed powerful love – able to move mountains and stand for armies if required.

We only shun darkness outside of us, when on some level we’re shunning darkness inside of us

Equally, we only shun light outside of us, when on some level we’re shunning light inside of us

We talk a lot in spirituality about the importance of owning our dark these days.

But many also struggle to own their light.

It’s no longer fashionable to love unapologetically, or to shine too brightly – give it a decade, it’ll come back around…but for now…

There’s deep fear in wholeness. Because we grow up with “right/wrong” paradigms from culture, wounded parents, teachers, etc.
And to live with allowing all – can feel like shaky ground to a system (psyche, physical, energetic body) that has learnt to scan for the “right” way to be. And needs to live within those imposed limitations in order to feel safe and accepted.

No matter which gaze it’s trying to gain acceptance by (tribe, friend group, parent, boss, culture, lover) or what end of the light spectrum that particular view favours.

People have such a fear of truly being all they are. Fear of seeming like “bliss ninny’s” as I heard it called when I lived in Ireland almost 20 years ago. Or not seeming intelligent enough if they shine.

Or fear of seeming not enlightened enough if they are in grief or rage or actually feeling.

It’s all the same dynamic – with a different coat on. Pushing away a part of ourselves, and the equal part in “other”

But what if we held a new paradigm? One where we loved ourselves enough to be able to be all that we are – and to receive another’s lived expression of love as deeply genuine?

One where instead of overcompensating for the extremes of traditional spirituality – which wanted to dwell in transcendence, love and light and bypass the body, mud and emotion –  by going to the opposite extreme of refusing to shine – we could see easily that any extreme, any bypassing, is destructive.

There’s a deep intelligence, in dwelling in both places.

The middle place is where wholeness, equanimity, potency, alive presence and deep freedom exists.

Where all is welcomed, all allowed.

Where we’ve dropped judgment and censoring of others – no matter what they are – because we’ve dropped it in ourselves.

Ironically, love is the intelligence required to do this.

A very important aspect of this is being able to deeply let go of how we are seen by others, which has been important for me on this journey.

Until we give everyone the freedom to see us however they see us – we are not free ourselves.

Fixating on the gap between who we know ourselves to be, and who we are seen as – imprisons us.

There’s a freedom then, in simply letting go. Knowing who we are, ourselves. Living it deeply and courageously, regardless of the impact.

Regardless of whether our natural expression is beaming, sepia toned, dark, light, grey…or neon.

To be wholly, honestly, fearlessly – us. It’s the work of lifetimes, and the only real job there will ever be.

If there’s an “I”

she is the breath
of the divine,

moving as it’s chest
it’s limbs, it’s heart.

What else could I be?

The body of God
is everything.

I am drunk on this love.

Let empires
the price of gold


God is here, in the dust.


we were warriors.

We mined
all the parts
of our lives

we deemed inadequate
for excavating

cutting and pasting



we know differently.

Now we KNOW,
we are poetry dancing

and poetry contains everything.

we are Grace,

we anoint

we know
all of us is holy.

We are light AND
the shadow cast by it

We are sacred mess.

Sublime, perfect


I am.
this body.

and I am
your body

I am cosmic
I am human

I am individual
and I am union.

the end of suffering
is not benign perfection

the end of suffering
is forgiveness – laughter –

at my own
fumbling humanity

there is such
exquisite beauty

in all of me.


don’t you see?

You were never
an apology.



in your eyes
no matter

the wars you wage

the places you stay

the angles of you

the plain exhaustion
at your own imperfection

the ways you misattune
to those you love

the way no one seems to hold you
in quite the way you want

have never been
an apology.

your heart is vast enough
to dance

with asteroids
and stars.

you are full

cosmic, yes

but that
has never been
separate, higher medicine

than the magnificence
of your beautiful


Great Spirit

move me

return me, to the borders
of my body

that you may take me,
where you want me.

through me,

use my hands,
these feet, this tongue

the sweat from this brow

take any humble skill
I may have

for your work

colonise my heart
with your love

that I may bring heaven to earth
through these cells

that I may fill the world
with understanding, kindness, compassion

not wait for some other body
to do it.

infuse me
– let me lead with love

even within the tyranny
of my own humanity

let me BE
your humility,

imbue me

I am wholly



Love poem (for infinite intelligence, God, source – whatever you wanna call it)

The lines of a lifetime
gather like water

In you, I saw a billion lives
merging, melting


the current of us lapping
our jagged angles
to sea-glass

smooth and brightly

you were always so

a whirling pool
of eddys and


and we went under,
for each other.

Breath-tides mined
in the moonlit ocean bed
of my heart and mind.

Besides, we all
have to start
and end

-or nowhere –

depending on
whose looking

and how

whose praying (and how)
whose touching…and how.

And oh, the rocks in us

the before
and the after of us,

our edges smoothing
along the way

blunt instruments
taking their toll

but I know you so well

your heart is a carnival carved
of river-mud and spells.

kingfishers sing
brightly and deeply

from inside the well
of you

and for so long
we ghosted the banks
of each other

until we didn’t.

until tidal waves
couldn’t stop us

until memories
and mergings

and all we are

couldn’t be contained
by banks
or damns
or natures plans

we are

so we let ourselves
spill the banks

because what else is there?
but this


no king-tide
no water-tight

can undo what is.

what we are.

and your salt-skin
is no longer a wound-rub
but a salve

that homes itself here
in a current of bone marrow
and breath

and I will love you
as fiercely
as the river runs to the sea

as deeply
as you have always loved me.

for just as nature
finds rest in being
exactly what it is,

so too have we

so too,



Come, sit.

Let me feed you sugar.

Let me wash your aching feet.

For we are,


and sea.


You, me.

And God is here
in your beautiful
broken heals

this is worship.

Let me kiss the mud of you
– it is simply the mud of me



There is no synagogue

no cathedral
no temple
no church

but my own heart.

Wherever I go,
I carry that.

Heaven is here
in hip-sway,

it’s a state

it’s the realm of light
and vibration

around us
within us

above us
below us.

My breath
is my sacred text

bellying me

Reminding me
of the wisdom of

silence and

I drink Christ’s blood
from the chalice

in my own heart

offer myself up
on the alter

of “yes”

is the tenderness

of this pain

everything away

burning me deeper
into trust.

Let me commune
with the trinity of

faith, fierce grace
and this chestful of


Thank you

I walked
a thousand blocks

with bleeding feet

for you to teach me
how to unlearn everything.

And in all those moments
when I was a refugee
from myself,


you stood quietly
green eyes firing

willing me through.

I suppose
letting you rewire me
was never gonna be easy

in the unraveling


braided into me.

And all the distraction
the numbing, the

ceaseless running
of before:

given over (willingly or

to the quiet
that you require.

the laser-beam-present-moment focus
of watching a snail
inch along a path
for an hour,


The subtle strength
of holding myself

still-fast enough for you

each day anew.


They say
is the fastest route

to enlightenment

if we can transcend
all the frightened

of ourselves

but I was never
logics daughter

could never muster
lust, for any idea of a saviour

have always preferred
giving over to water

when the maelstroms come.


We are all haunted, grace-filled

I was just trying to live
with the hauntings.

Wasn’t seeking,

But you brought me
to my knees

You broke me bodily
(the heart
was just the half of it)

you opened me

white flagged
the wars in me

my three-foot guru
in gumboot feet


When the light comes,
it spares nothing.


you were sent
to improve me

and I thank God
for your love

I thank God
I had the sense

to let you
undo me.

(For my daughter, Rose, on her 6th birthday.)

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