literally cultivating space…..5-13-15


About six months ago, I was phone-dreaming/collaborating with Jenny Macke about Harbin Hot Springs, throwing ideas, visions, intentions into the juicy soup pot between us, stirring it up. We both want to lift us out of the sticky day-to-day ensnaring web that consumes us, creates a barrier to truly knowing who we are and what we really need. Words were flying all over cyber-space until, almost in the same nano-second, we uttered “cultivating space”. That just nailed it: cultivate space, inside and out. It’s always there, inside and out, it just gets obscured in the daily fray.

In the months since that phone call, this intention, in small ways and large, has been manifesting everywhere. If you’ve been reading here, you know about the “good little soldier”. I’ve been super-tracking this ego character. Following his well-blazed trail alerts me to where the day-to-day web ensnares me. Since the start of the year, tracking has been bolstered by a self-declared monthly day of silence, Friday is my next one. No big rules around this day, just turn off the phone and computer, meditate a bunch, be quiet. Each dedicated day has had a different flavor. I have danced and been on the mat. I have cooked and gardened. I have read and wrote and soul collaged. I have been outdoors a lot. I have been silent, I have been singing. I have done nothing. In short, I have been cultivating space.

And then three weeks ago Vojin Kopuz, a 5Rhythms student from Bosnia, came to stay with me. He needed housing and wanted to learn about teaching by being in an established community.   Really, only a vague idea why I said yes to this request; I figured he could be here a week and then housesit while we travelled to N.Y. When this 26 year old enthusiastic, joy bundle arrived, I was still quagmired in a hard place; I was cultivating but felt anything but spacious. I was stuck in a hole and ready to make some changes but barely seeing my way toward the light.

His passion being perma-culture, he stepped into my yard and said “what shall we do here?” Within a few hours he had me shovel in hand, sweating and dirty, pulling weeds and turning dirt, breaking up hardpan and separating good mulch from bad. Together we cleared and nourished a completely weed-choked area un-farmable and fallow because of an overbearing redwood. The tree came down last year and now the land it choked and shaded has been re-vitalized. When I returned from New York, I planted it with fledgling vegetables. In short, I have literally been cultivating space.

In the long view, it’s been only a moment since I climbed out of the quagmire, started to make some changes. From this vantage point, in this new cleared out space, beyond the sweat and dirt, after separating good weeds from bad, there is spaciousness, inside and out, clearly palpable. And it shouldn’t surprise me, but, of course, several new fledgling plants have begun to emerge out of the emptiness. I am randomly watering and fertilizing and who knows which ones will thrive. I know very little, but I do know this: when we cultivate space, we create room for something new to emerge. And it may simply be more space. And the good little soldier, who, by the way recently was promoted from infantry to the calvary (it is so much easier on a horse…) is learning that more space is a very good thing.

So if you can carve out three days, if you want to dance and stretch and roll and soak in support of clearing things out that obscure your connection to the essential, bona fide you…come cultivate space with Jenny and me and the rest of this beautiful community June 19-21. Come see what emerges, it will probably surprise you.