My urine is ultra-yellow this morning following an intense ancient purification ceremony yesterday afternoon.  My buddy Jason had organized the private sweat lodge at Eh-Khweh-Heh-Weh, located on the Tuscarora Nation just outside Niagara Falls, NY, with a specific intention of “quitting” something or perhaps embracing change as an alternate perspective.  Many powerful words of wisdom were shared by the emcee Tahwehdahqui as he poured copious ladles of ice-cold water onto the molten hot ancestors stacked high in the pit.  For the first time in many moons the lodge humbled me to the brink of collapse as I sought refuge with my face upon the straw lining the floor.

Just this morning as I was getting my laptop booted up and it started freezing up with various programs running I became angry muttering expletives before finally surrendering to the moment in giving thanks.   In the lodge T asserted that the strongest addiction all people have in common is helplessness, which is the result of a sense of losing control.  He followed up with another assertion, “If you want to empower yourself go for what you want and if you want to disempower yourself say how you’re going to make it happen.”  In other words, we can set our intentions upon some outcome and unless we proceed with simply feeling good about the intention with focus on it coming to fruition we wind up creating it with our baggage.  It is imperative to surrender a degree of control.  For example, if you want a new car or increase in pay or a new relationship be open to however it may come into your life as if it is already manifest.  The challenge is being aware when we feel helpless as it is a practice we’ve all mastered for countless generations.

So here I am listening to a Whitney Houston mix on You Tube reflecting upon the ceremony before we have another showing of the house in an hour.  It’s either a path of faith or fear that we walk in this life, and from moment to moment we choose.  When we choose faith we feel peace within ourselves and about life in general regardless of our external environment and when we choose fear we feel a sense of helplessness and the correlating emotions of anxiety, sadness, anger, disgust, etc.  The aim is not to get rid of these feelings and in fact to make an effort in this direction would be insane.  We are going to experience the gamut of emotion as part and parcel of the human experience.  The aim is to be grateful no matter how we feel or what’s happening in our lives.  Put that in your peace pipe and smoke it.

I’ve definitely had my share of helplessness of late with my shoulder, which is showing improvement following the detoxification and massage therapy.  I’ve also felt helpless about my failed marriage and imminent relocation to another residence once the house is sold.  I feel it arise when I consider the bills to be paid amidst a dramatic loss of income and yet I proceed in faith despite the fear.  T shared an analogy using the example of an individual who trained in martial arts practicing one particular punch over and over to utter perfection and how it is much the same with our practice of helplessness as we wrestle for elusive control in our lives.  He emphasized that if we begin to practice gratitude in a similar manner we will embark upon a path to greatness.  And on the topic of becoming great he clarified that in some cases it requires sacrificing raising a family.  This message really resonated with me.

The third round, which symbolizes relationships with our mates, carried over into the fourth round as someone had inquired between rounds about how to overcome feeling helpless in his marriage.  T re-iterated that you can only practice giving thanks in those moments when your mate is doing or saying something that results in that feeling.  He did of course suggest that it doesn’t necessarily mean you remain in the relationship, but that how you leave it will determine, in large part, where you pick up in a subsequent union.  He also shared his opinion that divorce is the result of losing an emotional connection with your partner, typically when we seek this outside the partnership with others.  This also resonated for me deeply as I consider my path in this life.  I’ve had many deeply emotional connections in this lifetime, male and female, leaving me to wonder if I will be able to forge an exclusive bond with another.  I am not referring to sexual intimacy, just to clarify, as this is but one manner of connecting emotionally.  I’m talking about sharing certain elements of who we are in a mutually exclusive union.  I’m not certain I am willing to do that, unless I bond with someone who is hip to the fact.  If I’m to exchange vows again it will differ dramatically from my nascent experience in holy matrimony.

My wife didn’t come home last night and I slept deeply as anticipated following the sweat, although I feel as though I could go back to bed.  I need to wrap this latest entry into the daily log as our prospective homebuyers will be here shortly.  There’s a talking stick circle this afternoon at a friend’s place on the west side and also a Winterfest at Stockman’s Tavern; however, the way I feel right now I could just do nothing and continue in reflection.  I will see how I feel after heading out in a bit, maybe wash the latest round of filfth from my truck.  My brother invited me over for dinner with a big pot of home-cooked chili on the stove.  All me relations!

In common wealth,


“I decided long ago never to talk in anyone’s shadow, if I fail if I succeed at least I lived as I believe.” – Whitney Houston