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Letter to a young boy

Hullo there young one, riding your tricycle in the back yard in the small city of Cork in Ireland, playing happily, running through the forest behind the house with a whole world created there in your imagination. I’m your older

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From Shame to Joy

Sitting in Spike’s, a local coffee shop this morning, looking out the rain falling and feeding the earth what it needs. Such a deep feeling of love, appreciation, joy suffusing my entire being. Is it possible to distinguish between appreciation,

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Tonight I am man

Tonight I sat in the Japanese baths, a Saturday night ritual I am called to recently. Sitting on a cedarwood stool, bathing my body intimately, from head to toe, scrubbing each and every corner, paying it the direct attention it

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Remembering or Reinventing?

It can be astonishing, when one listens and pays attention, how much time us humans spend recreating the past and bringing it again and again into the present. This morning in the coffeeshop I overheard a random normal conversation between

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Tsunamis and moonbeams

I look out the coffeeshop window. Sun is shining on the wet roadways and tennis court. I tell a lady I’m moving out and going traveling indefinitely. Her whole face breaks into a smile, a huge warm embrace of delight.

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Full Worm Moon

Tonight the fear washes over me like the tide running suddenly in on the beach, far further than the previous surge. In the past 18 hours I have sold almost everything I own, including my bed, my bowls, my plates

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We Have Death Backwards

It’s a busy morning at my local coffee shop, a place I come to write. I manage to stake out a claim on a table in the corner, amidst the chattering rollicking kids clambering around their chairs. Kids seem to

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How to make your heart sing and your skin tingle

I continue to deepen my understanding and practice of fear and uncertainty. It’s a fascinating and highly useful skill to expand our capacity to feel fear yet still take action. Fearlessness, that awkward word that doesn’t mean not having fear,

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Time to move with love in my heart

I feel the draw of heading out with only my daypack. Down to the bare essentials – journal, laptop, a few clothes, toothbrush. The feeling that everything, absolutely everything that I need is with me, on my back, is extremely

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The Power of Perspective

A thought today about the ineffable nature and power of scale and perspective. Looking out at the ocean while meditating, the vastness of it, the never-ending roiling of the waves, the heaving to and fro, up and down, out and

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How self-worth gets all screwed up

For anyone struggling with self-worth… a story from inside my head 🙂 A few days ago I was on a boat ride from Boca de Tomatlan to Yelapa, Mexico. The only way to get to Yelapa is by boat, there

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The Smell of Toast

A strong smell appeared to me, as I drove across the massive Bay Bridge that stretches between Oakland and San Francisco. It was New Year’s Day, this year. The afternoon sun shone bright and low, the beautiful white bridge glowing

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Care How You Feel

The main practice that I am living life by at the moment is one I call “Care How I Feel”. This is a phrase I picked out of a workshop I went to a few months ago. This phrase in

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Do you know how beautiful you are?

As you might know, when we sit in meditation we notice a thought arise, and when we notice that we’ve been thinking, we can simply label it “thinking”. Thinking. And let it fade as simply as it arose. Not pushing

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Uplifting society one bed at a time

I have been very ill for the past month. Debilitatingly so. For much of this time I haven’t been able to walk, hardly even to the bathroom, without large effort, holding myself up by the wall. My muscles stopped working

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Hunger Monster

Standing on Pearl Street in downtown Boulder, Colorado. It is 7pm, the shops are closing. I am here with a purpose. I choose an Italian restaurant for my experiment. There are a few people inside, it is cozy and warm

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Grooves of our Lives

Shortly after I quit my job, left my apartment and the city I’d been in for almost 20 years, and left to wander the world to follow my heart, I woke up with a strong feeling. Not that I have

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Coming Out

I waltzed down Grafton Street, the main shopping street in the center of Dublin, Ireland, on a sunny spring day. I held a giant bouquet of flowers close to my chest,  both arms fully wrapped around it, embracing them whole-heartedly.

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New road smell

In Oregon, where I was living in a cabin in the forest, I took a new road. That day, I took a right where before I had gone straight. As I drove down this new-to-me road, I couldn’t help but

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At first, there’s nothing

At first there’s nothing. In that nothing, everything is loud, and the silence is deafening. So deafening you don’t hear anything. Then from somewhere, a magic place that doesn’t have a name, a twisty wisp of wakening happens. This wisp

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How to find your heart signal

At a certain point, something happened to me. I started hearing my voice. I mean, it had been there all along, but now I really started to hear it. More than that, I began to listen to it. And I

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Silent Screaming

I grew up in a land of constant fighting. The Ireland I grew up in is a divided nation. So much hate, dotted across a beautiful green island. People killing constantly. Taking young men out to the back of the

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Discovering your Basic Goodness

Discovering, and fully knowing, Basic Goodness has been the most fundamental transformation I’ve gone through. If you can discover this inside and around you, it will change everything about how you experience yourself and your world; it is that powerful.

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From Apathy to Action

Yesterday I cleaned the stove. Spritzed some cleaner on the stovetop, and reveled in cleaning each speck of grease off it until it shone, reflecting the light from the window in its dark brown surface. The countertops too, running the

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Licking the blade of nowness

I’ve become keenly aware over the past few years of what I call knife edge moments, where we are forced willingly or unwillingly to lick the sharp blade of nowness – directly engage with this world. In a knife-edge moment

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Snow falls like an army

The snow falls like an army outside my windowThe white soldiers descend in lines so straight.An invading spiritual army,against which the human landscape has no defense. For a while the roads and sidewalks put out a valiant effortBut as the

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Why I spend time outside

Human-built environments are digital, digitized, bitted, quantized. They are binary or ternary or decimal. They have hard edges and extents, which exist in specific pre-defined sizes with nothing in between. They are all-or-nothing. My way or the highway. They brook

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Enough tiger for all

A story of suffering, of the hero journey that we can undertake if we choose it, and an offer of help. I was deeply agoraphobic. For almost a year I could not leave the house, and there were years and

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