Pull up a chair: Kitchen Table Chat with Vicki Woodyard

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Everyday life is the entrance to eternity.

Everyday Life is the Entrance to Eternity
Everyday life is the entrance to eternity. It must be that way; we must see our lack of choice in this. I went to the grocery this morning. Did I see the entrance as I grabbed hold of a cart in the lobby? No. It doesn’t work that way, although knowing yourself in the moment is to know eternity.

I did my shopping and returned home and ate lunch. Some sour dough bread spread with pimento cheese and a few chips. I didn’t see the entrance there either, because we are wired to be asleep when we are out and about in the world. Or for returning home, for that matter. And yet the entrance was there all the time.

As I type these words the peace is palpable. It wasn’t there until I realized I was at the keyboard typing this note. Consciousness is as slippery as an eel. No, that’s not right. Consciousness is ever present. It’s our thoughts and feelings that are slippery.

A long weekend looms. I don’t handle those well. I feel the vast wasteland of our holidays geared to point up our lack of happiness. The sales fliers will be everywhere, urging us to fill our carts with things we neither need or can’t afford. Eternity is surely not something to be purchased.

I was listening to a spiritual teacher online speaking of how we must learn to allow our thoughts and feelings to exist instead of banishing them to the basement. That feels true and yet we are not wired to do that, either. We are wired for sleep, to be “food for the moon” as Gurdjieff said. To awaken, a price must be paid. I know you want to know what it is.

If I knew in words, I would hasten to tell you. And if I said it in words, it would do no good. It is not a matter of listening to words but of ascending to a higher level that that. If you want that, the entrance to eternity appears right in front of you. But it is never that simple. The next time you look, it will be gone again. Just like the guru, just like your aim to awaken, just like Jesus said. To paraphrase, the kingdom of heaven is spread out upon the earth and you do not see it.”

Vicki Woodyard

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The Diva and “The Natural”

Our Own Sweet Song
Once there was a little bird who was afraid to sing. That was unheard of in her neck of the woods because it is a given that birds sing. This could be the first neurotic bird.

But instead of analysis, which cost more than her family could afford, they sent her to live with a famous opera singer, who just happened to live in the nabe.

They put her in a cage when the diva went on stage. They were all the rage. But the little bird soon became a diva, too. What to do?

Now you may think this is definitely the first example of a Jenny Lind/Jennifer Lopez combo, and you are probably right. But two divas on the same stage proved devastating. One of them had to go.

So the impresario arranged a sing-off at Radio City Music Hall. The judges were instructed to listen to each singer and then give feedback.

First the diva took the stage, without the little bird this time. The judges were in awe of her poise and ability to shatter a champagne glass using only her voice.

But when the tiny little bird flew out and took her place on an improvised sparkly roost, everyone was on the edge of their seat. People leaned forward in order to hear better.

First there was silence as the little bird looked out in fear and trembling before the vast ocean of the audience. She had never been on stage alone before. There had not been a dress rehearsal. While the diva had been dressed in sequins and satin, the little bird had only her feathers.

If you could have seen her up close, you would have seen her body trembling, as if she had been captured by aliens from another planet. And in truth, she had been. Her home was the forest and not the stage.

But now she had her chance at fame and fortune. And she knew she didn’t want that. So she sang but not well. She pretended to hit some false notes. She diddled around with her roost and pretended like she was fascinated with the glitter. She wasn’t. Not at all. And then she watched the audience fall in love with her. Not because she was the best. The diva clearly gave the best performance. But because she knew the score.

Everyone in the room that night knew she could not be bought or sold. Could not be hired by a corporate management or seduced into a higher salary. Her voice was what it was. She was a natural. And as she took her humble bow, she knew that she would never again be afraid to sing. She would only be afraid of losing her original voice.

The audience gave the bird a standing ovation, which meant nothing to the little bird. When they returned her to the cage, she became silent in protest against what she had been asked to do.

The bird’s silence was the richest deepest note that could ever have been sung by the diva. It is said that the diva went on to even greater prominence and the little bird never sung on stage again. She sang only when it was natural and never for an audience. Oh, she got some nice fat worms, but so did all the other birds. And that is exactly how it should be.

Vicki Woodyard

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The Heart Knows Its Own

It’s Saturday and the sun is finally back out after days of gloom and rain. Listen to my video and comment if you care to or would like to see more.

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No one tells the truth….

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Here’s what I think. No one tells the truth. They can’t because it is too brutal for words. Although I have written thousands of notes about the spiritual path, someone will tell me there is no path. They say that just to complete the opposites on the mental level. So, okay, there is just path/no path on the mental level. On the emotional level, there are opposites like love/hate, fear/peace, etc. On the physical level, there are wellness/illness, old/young, etc. People love to argue. But they seldom tell the truth.

I venture to tell mine and people tell me it’s been done to death. Yes, it has. But I am still living it full-time. And everyday someone else gets a truth bomb dropped on them. The ego is never prepared.

And of course someone wants to remind me that there is no ego. True enough. It’s a concept. So I lost the concept of having a daughter and a husband. Since I am just a concept, it shouldn’t have devastated me.

All the enlightened people come out of the woodwork when you try and say how you feel on the human level. They want to clarify points you apparently didn’t understand deeply enough or you would simply shut up. They need to talk about their lineage and what experience woke them up.

I will tell you this. When you are sitting alone on a long holiday weekend with no place to go and nothing to do, it is not just a concept.

Love is not a concept, either. It is reality. So when a grieving parent decides not to speak of their dead child because it disturbs people, that seems like the rational thing to do. But me, I won’t shut up. I became a writer.

I got my royalty payment the other day for my last book. It was less than fifteen dollars for 3 months. I won’t publish another book.

Now the know-betters will say I wanted to be an author too much so I pushed all chances of that away. Might as well say I wanted my children to live so one of them had to die. Rationality does nothing to nourish the spirit.

I know my writing has moved hundreds of people and I know exactly why. Because I speak the unspeakable and some find a deep relief in knowing they are not alone. I will never stop doing that. Apparently that is the deal I have with God.

Vicki Woodyard

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Becoming a Butterfly

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I have long been a butterfly in the making. It has been dark inside that cocoon of guilt and shame. What kept me there so long? What can free me except the light of awareness?

I was told the world was a beautiful place and that love was everywhere. I was not blinded by the light but by the darkness. I found no wiggle room inside my self-constraint.

Inside the cocoon of my mind I wrestled with my negativities, finding no where to turn but down. I was a bad person, someone that no one loved or wanted.

All of these feelings were embedded in the cocoon. I sighed a lot, feeling that life was impossible and obstacles were impassable.

And then I met a shaman that peeled away the cocoon. That was a year and a half ago. Since then I have been naked but not afraid. Well, not as much as I used to be.

Recently I got a glimpse of what a butterfly wing looks like. Wow. It looks like colorful angel equipment I can use.

I just glimpsed it over one of my shoulders. I am shedding shoulds and oughts like they are going out of style. I am a two-year-old toddler in an old body. Whee. It’s me!

I still get blue on occasion. Still get anxious and filled with dread. But it is all happening in the light now. The cocoon has fallen away. And my writing, well, it is just getting more and more to the point.

The only point in it I can see is to express the inexpressible as best I can. And I don’t need no damned cocoon to do that.

Vicki Woodyard

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Now I Know

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I was reading a long thread on a friend’s page which prompts me to write this for him and all of us, including me.

Love is one thing and a person’s patterns have nothing to do with it. I will give you the perfect example, well, it is for me. I was married for almost 38 years. The marriage took me away from my extended family. It showed me that my husband had a tin ear, did not care for romantic movies and seldom gave me a compliment. I was expected to know that he loved me. Why? Because he did.

He learned that he had put me on a pedestal. I did not drive on the freeway and could not operate a road map or measure anything with a ruler. I told him exactly what I thought and corrected him on practically everything he did.

We did this because love and patterns have nothing to do with each other. Love is a mystery to the bitter end. I should know. I have been living without this dear man for almost a dozen years now.

The love we had was cosmic, never-ending and brutally heartbreaking for both of us. There were few good times and many dark nights.

What do I make of all this? Love is not a pretty picture but a huge demand for growth. At the end, I was caring for a child. He looked noble right up until the end. He was a devout Christian and never ever stopped loving me nor I him. But the patterns? They sucked big-time. They threw us off course thousands of times. They prevented us from feeling things we were not yet strong enough to feel.

He refused to cry in front of anyone. I had to tell him we were being parted (by death) before a tear trickled down his chest. I had to be so damned strong and he had to be so damned weak. The cancer took his dignity but not his nobility and his pure heart.

I don’t know what I am left with but the knowledge of the heart. It is this. Death is the great revealer. Life is just preparation for it. No one wants death hanging around their door, but there it is. There it is. Love is stronger. Now I know.

Vicki Woodyard

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The Biggest Identity Thief

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Ego is the biggest identity thief! Forget all the news stories about other people stealing your identity. You need to realize that your ego has stolen your authenticity. For no one can be authentic while masquerading as themselves.

There are simple ways to know that your identity has been stolen:

You are doing things you don’t want to do. The ego is now in its full power, convincing you to be nice to people or they will turn and rend you. You cower in fear of what others think.

You are feeling things you don’t want to feel. Guilt is taken as a good thing. In fact, all of the negative emotions are now rationalized as being for your own good.

You are saying things you don’t want to say. You are the puppet of your ego, who is making promises that you just can’t deliver. Things like, “Sure, I would love to come to your wedding.” And you are thinking, “This will cost me big-time, but I don’t dare say no. Weddings are sacred rites, festive occasions, and never mind it will put me deeper in debt. Just say yes and make others happy. Forget yourself.”

And so it goes. You have now forgotten your cosmic identity and are forging your true name, which is “I am.” Now you are adding ridiculous adjectives to it. Adjectives like “afraid, insecure, sick, powerless, etc.” Ego has stolen all you hold dear. All that is priceless about you. You have traded your preciousness for trash and no one will care a bit.

Is there a way to stop this identity theft? Ah, now we get to the nut of the essay. You tell me. Are you living a truly satisfying life? If so, you can quit reading now. But if you are caving in to the demands of other people, identity theft is happening. Not only that, it is an inside job. The ego knows everything about you and that is how it is able to steal from you. It is the cat burglar of consciousness.

If you want to stop this thievery, consider installing a witness in your head. It doesn’t cost anything. You may not know this, but God gives one to every man or woman when they get ready to live a different kind of life.

The witness needs no instruction guide to set it up. Just want it and you have it. As long as the witness is at work, nothing real can be stolen from you. And here is the good news. The witness actually restores everything you thought you had lost. Not a bad deal.

You owe nothing to anyone except to yourself. The slate has been wiped clean. No more identity theft. You can stop looking over your shoulder. You can stop second guessing yourself. Here is the final and greatest secret. No criminal has to be arrested. Just remember who you really are. Only do what you are led to do. Never stray from that direct way home. No one will ever steal from you again. Your identity as the witness is complete.

Vicki Woodyard

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