#46
April 2008

The Basics
Stay with the basic practice:
* Immerse yourself in your breath for 15 minutes, morning and evening.
* Drink plenty of water.

What you liked
* You liked the story of my friend and his sister’s music. It made you feel hopeful, glad, awed, shocked, peaceful.

* You liked the practice of appreciation, and noticed a subtle yet profound difference between it and gratitude. Although some of you, loving the practice of gratitude, were at first a bit put off, thinking I might be criticizing gratitude. But you tried appreciation, and liked it.

* You liked “icky rice.”

One of you wrote:
“The idea of approaching everything as 'my beauty' became a focus for me. My cranky cat Eena softened when addressed as 'my beauty.' She showed me her gentle vulnerable side. I called plants 'my beauty' as I watered them, and even called myself 'my beauty' as I looked into the mirror in the morning. I found a tenderness in myself, found my habitual ranting and raving quieting down, realized there was another way to live. And now that your latest newsletter reminded me of that transformation, I'm going to start another month of addressing the world in this way.”

Another lucky cat:
“I tried your suggested 'icky rice' experiment. I’ve been saying or thinking ‘You wonder of the universe!’ to everyone and everything. My wild and wacky cat has totally mellowed out. When I say it to myself, anxiety melts away. When I think ‘You wonder of the universe’ about someone I’m mad at, I can’t stay mad. There's a woman I've never forgiven, who I've nurtured my disgust and judgement of for many years. I've been thinking of her and saying 'You wonder of the universe.' I am beginning to let go of my long-held resentment. Even she is a 'wonder of the universe'! This practice is softening me, making me more compassionate and loving. I've wanted that. Thanks again, for everything.”

The Gift
So much happens when you practice Breath and Water. So much of what is possible becomes actual. You tell me that over and over again. Stay with your practice. Begin again if you've paused. Give yourself the gift of choosing to be available to what is possible for you.

Where am I?
After wintering in Texas I'm back in North Dakota, where everyone sounds like me, only more so. Deb is back at work, supervising the excavating for new buildings at a coal power plant. A strong wind blows relentlessly here, and she comes home every day black from coal dust. She expects to move to a somewhat cleaner job, although still in North Dakota, in a few weeks.

Readings
As always, I am available for readings. Call me to schedule. 612-965-9708.

eBook
As you may know, I created a manuscript based on the classes I taught for 20 years. After a couple of years of avoiding it, I've taken it down, dusted it off, and have started reading it. And you know, I'm quite enjoying it. I'm thinking of publishing it as an eBook. Does anyone have experience with writing/publishing eBooks? If so, I'd love to talk with you.