I am a Secret

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I am a secret to myself. To make this discovery I must look within until I see only emptiness. At that point the emptiness is light and light remains a mystery to the ego. The ego is pure darkness, clutching love to itself, never knowing what a useless task that is.

I am uncluttering my house, using the question “Does this or that object give me joy?” And if it doesn’t, I am free to get rid of it. I must not take this too literally, however, for joy is a word like love. It is at last a secret.

Some things we are born into this world to lose. And losing creates holy space. As Wordsworth said, “Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers.” And this was long before computers forced us to communicate via pixels if we are ever to get anything done.

The secret of myself is secure. I lie intact in the mystery of creation, a seed with the potential to see. And to see is to love. And to love is to die. The secret cannot be told, only recognized as one.

When things are bared to the light of day, they shrivel and die. But when bared to consciousness, they grow in the darkness of surrender to what is holy. It feels like a sacrifice, to let go of expecting things to go your way. And yet we never learn.

I am a secret to myself. How and why I love or hate is beyond my rational mind’s comprehension. At long last, we lay down the mind and seek satisfaction in the secret. And that is when we truly begin to live.

I do not want to be know. I want to love fully with no insurance of success. And how to do that is also a secret. A woman wrote a book called “The Secret.” I could not feel any vibration of love coming from it. But then I am blind and dumb. It has always been that way. From birth to death, love wraps us in the mystery.

Vicki Woodyard

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The De-Cluttering Express

Sunday Morning, August 28, 2016

After I ate breakfast, I read the paper and washed my hair. That done, I made a run to Walgreens for some black plastic bags for discards. Lauren, the lovely black girl, was working the register. I made it a point to smile and tell her good morning and the smile was returned.

Then I set to work, filling a black garbage bag with trash. Then I put things that no longer brought me joy into boxes to donate on Tuesday morning. I find this a wonderful exercise. For a while, longer than a decade, I kept many of Bob’s mementos from his life. Today it gave me more joy to let them go than to keep them. Among the discards: A pair of his black plastic glasses from the 70’s. I kept the last pair he wore in case Rob should want them. But you can’t win in these things. If I asked, Rob would probably have wanted the plastic ones. So I have to make the call to let them go.

I got rid of several bags worth of clothes that no longer give me pleasure to wear for different reasons. Feelings of guilt arose, but I reminded myself that someone would enjoy them. Yesterday I de-cluttered the kitchen hutch and built-in desk shelves there. I felt very good about that paring down. Right after Bob died, I declared the hutch to be a brand new space for me. And through the years, it got over-filled with beautiful things. So now I have less there, which is more.

In the bathroom I got rid of some accessories, a wooden madonna and a stained-glass angel. They shall go to the two women who clean house for me. And last of all, I took a ceramic angel that I gave Bob for Christmas long ago and put it out with all of the other discards. As I recall, he was not especially fond of it. Besides he is an angel himself now.

“My burden is easy and my yoke is light.” Jesus

Vicki Woodyard

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Love and Decluttering

Such a silly, energy-sapping day. It started out with the intention to declutter. The book I am reading suggests that if something gives you joy, keep it. And if it doesn’t, discard it. So here I am at the end of the day, having gone nowhere but into confusion.

I did well at first, marching through the minutiae of my life with resolve. I got a respectable donation up for the Kidney Foundation, or whatever it is called, and they will be here Tuesday.

But in between paring down, I am reading a remarkable book, “All The Light We Cannot See.” It takes place in France during World War II, so it is filled with fear and death, interspersed with love and magic. In other words, it is about anyone’s life.

I put a pot of soup on early in the day and ate it way too early. Then I worked at getting more decluttering done, but I had done the easiest part first. Now I was faced with things I couldn’t get rid of so easily.

So I keep picking up the book and reading more. More about people being faced with severe deprivation, hunger and death. It makes my decluttering look rather ridiculous. I, who have more objects of beauty than I know what to do with, read about how the French people lost so much during the war. The heroine is a little blind girl who has been separated from her father. Blindness develops other qualities in a person, and she is a fascinating and lovable character.

Suddenly I am feeling the pain and loss of not only these characters but of my own. I, too, have lost family. I, too, have known hardship of an emotional nature. The knickknacks I have accumulated do not fill the holes they caused in my emotional body.

So I have called it a day on the decluttering. I need to take a walk when it cools down a bit. I will probably finish the book before bedtime. It is one of those books you can’t put down.

Vicki Woodyard

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Explaining the “I”

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We all have buddha nature, or “the Christ Consciousness,” but we are asleep to it. And when we are asleep, we think in opposites. Awake, there is only the Christ Consciousness. And if you think it is easy to wake up, you would be wrong. You have to stand alone against the whole world of opposites to gain entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven. Every student is tested endlessly. The tests arise from the opposition of ego to other egos.

That is the situation. The solution is to wake up. And to wake up, you have to die to your thoughts.

Words are useless in this process. Silent awareness is the goal. And this requires a deep humbling of the thought-self.

It is not enough to read the wise words of saints and sages. You must drop the division between you and them.

Hallowed ground must be tilled by intention.

You will reap the harvest when you have seen that all is well. Truly, that is the meaning of the human journey. To see that you have always been resting in the hollow of His Hand.

Vicki Woodyard

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The Soul’s Company

So here’s the deal. School is mandatory; we all know that. Just like we know how miserable high school was. And then we get kicked out into the real world and that is miserable for anyone who is a sensitive. You don’t fit into that round hole, being a square peg. And so you search the bookstores for things you resonate with about awakening. And you probably read Yogananda, some Joel Goldsmith, A Course in Miracles, Muktananda, the Niz and Ramana Maharshi. They all speak about being as the key to enlightenment. And they are right.

But your ego is not fixing to give up without a fight to the death. Half-way routes don’t work. And being lukewarm, you spend decades trying to have it your way. Trying to have your cake and eat it, too.

Finally small cracks of light begin to come into your dense little skull. Golgatha means skull for a reason. The escape from your head must be made, but forcing it keeps you there longer. What to do?

Nothing is the correct answer. And nothing takes as long as it takes. Because something always interferes. You are neck-deep in teachings and your heart is snoring away. It is totally bored with how you are going about things.

But if you are sincere, something will come along that rocks your world, and in a good way. And then good things begin to happen and you didn’t cause them. What is that all about? So you throw the books away and realize it was never about the books. It was about energy. And the energy protects itself in the only way it can. By asking you to lift yourself into a higher level by sinking to your knees in humility.

No one could have taught you this. You had to come to it on your own. And then every teaching you ever read comes alive. And you now feel that progress is being made at last. And it is. Just not by your head. The head teachings are for the pharisees and there are plenty of them to go around. You just smile and say no thank you to most invitations now. You had rather be at home alone with the soul’s company. After all, you went without it for so long….

Vicki Woodyard

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Show me….

Show me the hole in the fabric of pain.
Tell me the story again and again.
Mention the mystery will heal me in time.
Rock me to sleep in a sweet foreign clime.

Open the sky to a far deeper blue.
Fasten the shutter so I won’t see you.
Let the rain fall on the graceful green fern.
Let the rose drink while it still has a turn.

Move all the pieces of puzzle in place.
Refigure the love on that dear little face.
Remind me that loving is nothing to steal
and that mercy is always behind me at heel.

Vicki Woodyard

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Introversion, gotta love it!

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Yesterday I was in conversation with a number of introverts online and we can’t get enough of the discovery that we are not alone. We just feel that way! You see, we are wired to get tired when we have been in social situations too long. Our nerves begin to fray and we want to find the nearest exit but often there isn’t one.

My son helped me a great deal with this, giving me two books on introversion. He was giving me permission to be myself. And since he is introverted as well, we lead a quiet life. He takes his bike out for a ride on the trail almost every day, taking in the natural world without people messing it up.

And I spend almost all my day writing online, being in silence and watching TV in the evenings. It may seem a dull life to many, but I am happiest when my introversion is honored. School days are when introverts have the toughest times and again in many work situations. Idle chatter is a necessity and we introverts simply don’t like that.

Being on the spiritual path is also one of the things that introverts love. Coming to know ourselves is what we were made for. Studying the great laws of the universe connects us to a much larger dynamic than water cooler chat, doesn’t it?

Of course, other factors are involved. I was the oldest child, so had a great sense of seriousness about everything. I wanted to be perfect for my parents and so I swallowed a good deal of my emotions. That led to a life of anxiety and panic attacks as I got older. It is just these last few years that I have come into my own. If you ask me what that means, I can only say that idleness is a very good thing to experience. My hands are not the devil’s workshop but the hands of an apprentice in the temple, given over to writing as I am led to write. Trusting source to guide me as to what to say. And so, dear fellow introverts, you are not alone. You are in good company. Dare to be yourself. As some wag said, “Everyone else is taken.”

Vicki Woodyard

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Can an Individual be Enlightened?

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Can an individual be enlightened? Only when they realize they are a part of the infinite and by that time, there is no one there to ask the question. You see, that question was asked by what Vernon Howard calls the False Self, or ego. The True Self, or essence, is the answer to the question. Now we have discarded the false and embraced the true. We are all the living presence of God.

How can I be so bold as to say this? Only by living it, by being it, by transmitting it effortlessly. The minute I put effort into it, I have become false. And the world, by nature, is false. Christ said, “My kingdom is not of this world.” Truer words were never spoken.

Last night I went to a kirtan. The grace flowed forth from every person present. Not just from the musicians, but from everyone there. No one was separate from anyone else. We felt this, we tasted this. What can’t this happen everywhere? Only because a state of sleep rules humanity. It takes a certain energy to escape from this world and most people don’t want to be bothered. And even if you do, it will take your whole life to become the One Life. Your ego death has to occur moment by moment by moment.

I just submitted my final manuscript for editing. I got down on my knees, literally, and gave it over to God. I am learning that is the only way for me to get anything done. On my knees knowing that Vicki is an artifice from start to finish. But beneath the veneer lies the Kingdom of Heaven if I choose to enter in. And I do. I choose it endlessly, ever new, ever present, everlasting.

Vicki Woodyard

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A Beautiful Letter

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Aug 21, 2016

Dear Vicki,

I hope you are having a wonderful morning. I had a whole page of great, profound words I wanted to write about how much I love your book, but my cats keep walking in front of the computer screen!

I finished Life With A Hole In It It last night and wish I had your words to tell you how much it touched me and how much I want to share it with others. There are so many parts of the book that I underlined, put stars around and marked so I could go back and read them to people. I will have to order new books to give as gifts.

I’m a photographer so I thought I would express my gratitude to you for your gift of words and light with a picture. Two days ago I felt the need to go up to the Blue Ridge Parkway and walked a beautiful, overgrown nature trail in perfect solitude. I sat next to a tree and placed my hands on it because it felt so healing. When I read about your reading with Julia Melges-Brenner “…keep reaching for the light, moment by moment, reaching out and reaching up, and in this way, blossoming beautifully,” I wanted to share a photo of the tree which made me think of your spiritual journey.

Thank you so much, Vicki, for your courage in sharing your heart-breaking, yet uplifting and healing story. I’m now ready to begin “Bigger Than the Sky,” and am so excited about your new book. I also am getting ready to buy A Guru in the Guest Room.

I hope you have a wonderful Sunday. It feels like the heat is breaking here in the mountains. I’m sitting here next to my open window feeling a cool breeze come through after a steady rain all night. It’s heaven!! And this year we’ve had no mosquitoes which has been wonderful. In previous years we had to cover our heads with towels, run to the car and then spend 10 minutes in the car waving our arms around like maniacs to kill the ones that got in the car! I thought South Carolina was bad, but who knew we would have so many mosquitoes here in the mountains! On that thought, I will shut up now!

Take care.

Tibby’s website is here.

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