Sunday, June 26, 2011


Climbing The Mountain of Awe

For years, every morning when I awakened, I reached out in my mind for the land of awe. Most of the time I was able to get there, no matter how difficult were my days in semi-darkness, even if it took me to mid-day and just for a moment to attain it. Those were the years, 1998 – 2006, when I was blind and recovering from being blind.

The whole of the ordeal; being blind and recovering from it, was like being out of this world, yet in it somehow; a place where the physical and the spiritual were one. They had to be, if I were to survive. The adventure, if one can appropriately call it such, made a shaman out of me.

Now having recently lost the sight in my right eye, I am faced with the possibility of living this way again. The shaman’s journey is always one of birth-death and rebirth. I would not have purposely chosen it. But here it is.

So how does someone even begin to describe what it was like to be blind and to recover from it? And, what it is like now, again?

There is no language for that which is so completely unseen; the being in a place where the physical and the spiritual must be entwined, if one is to survive. Yet I want to reach out to our readers with whatever language can allow to speak of it here and now as best I can.

And, with this telling, help you to come to know and understand why it is that the New Horizons Small “Zones Of Peace” Project model for building exceptional communities is both so viable – and – so critical for all people in our time, here and now.

Language – and – a few graphics and photos is all we have here. And, it is more important than ever that I do my utmost to convey what it is that makes the climbing of the mountain to awe so imperative to me that I would risk this sheer nakedness here as I am doing.

You see, climbing the mountain Of awe in my own mind was not the only ascent I made during my term of blindness and recovery from it.

During this time. I was inordinately blessed, almost miraculously, to meet Murat Yagan. And, to find a near-by community that was learning the practical application of the ancient ways of Murat’s heritage, the ways of the Abkhazian peoples of the Caucasus Mountains. This too was a pathway to awe.

Because I was limited in my ability to travel due to my eye problems, I decided to connect with this close-by group and learn what I could by making myself a visiting member of it. This affiliation which was to last, from start to finish for about seven years, combined with my previous twenty-five years as a psychotherapist, running a therapeutic community, is how I learned that “awe” is a place one can reach not only on one’s own, but also with others in a community, purposely, as a way of life. I want you to know this!

Thus was the New Horizons Small “Zones of Peace” Project first envisioned in my mind when seeing in my mind was about all I had.

I hope you will want to know more of this tale and its lessons, as myself and my hearty, new team of Climbing The Mountain of Awe GAME players strive, under challenging circumstances, to climb, once again, the mountain of awe together.

More to come.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Friday, June 3, 2011

Two Schools Of Thoughts On Emotions

I was intent on giving myself time off, at least through next week.

Losing my eyesight, even though I still have sight in one eye is not an easy death. I am scared And, up and down in an array of other primitive, dealing-with-significant-loss emotions.

Sure, I hate not to produce my quota of blogs per week. I should strive to do two apiece for each of our two blog sites each week. But you can see I have often fallen far short in recent months though I do, at least, think about writing my articles. 

Still Lisa reassures me that quality is better than quantity. With these words from on high, at least in my small world, I relax, secure in my belief that the long-term goals we have defined for writing these blogs will be met; contributing whatever we can to social change for the better.

Nonetheless, here I sit at week’s end, not far from sundown (the Jewish Sabbath which I give myself permission to celebrate whatever time on a weekend that I feel to be most sacred for me), contemplating whether or not to add a piece when I had already decided to give myself a well-deserved break. 

I don’t think, however, that I will say much on the topic that now demands my commenting; “the two schools of thought on emotions.” But I do feel compelled to, at least, "name" the issue though I would rather not.

A long held debate topic, this one about emotions. And, certainly not one I even truly care to debate. However, apparently forces beyond my control beckon my statement of position.

So let me state my position and invite you to tune in again soon as I elaborate on the subject. And, please do comment, if you have your own thoughts, feelings and experiences to contribute.  That would be so valuable. This topic is quite relevant to the period of ritual mourning I am embarking upon with this loss of the eyesight in my right eye.

Since commenting directly online to the blog seems to be almost an impossibility, please send me your comments and I will post them at the end of this, or any other relevant piece at:

Two schools on emotions:

One school of thought holds that emotions need to be controlled. Corollary to that school is the strong focus running rampant in our society to “just get over it.”  Whatever "it" is that feels distracting to one's higher purpose.

(Perhaps my words, here, hold judgments though I do try to be fair. Actually, upon reflection, there is strong, even very strong, judgment in my statement.

While I do think that guiding one’s thoughts, feelings, behaviors and intentions is a critical discipline for healthy daily living, sometimes enough purposeful guiding is just too much!

More to come.)

The second school of thought on emotions is that emotions are to be honored as gifted, organically-based markers that guide us to emotional, spiritual and physical health.

Obviously, I am a proponent of the second, presently intent on healing and transforming the challenge and emotional anguish of the loss I am facing by heeding my emotions and using them to bring me to a higher plane in this human existence of mine.

Will I succeed?

In spite of the fact that I frequently feel awful these days, I have every reason to believe that I will succeed.

Based on my past experiences, I strongly believe that, if I use my present, primitive pain as guide posts, I will come through this ordeal transformed.

In support of that, my spirit sister, Sandi, a strong proponent of the first school of thought on emotions, wrote the following to encourage me yesterday.

From: Sandi Lee

Your dark night of the soul will lead you through a tunnel where, as you emerge, you will find that you have more Light in your life than you've ever had before.

The walk through this darkened tunnel is the only way to the Light.Release and let go of anything that may be keeping you from walking quickly and with great strength and courage..............

What you will discover as you step out of this tunnel is the REAL YOU.

I love you. Sandi (and she really does)

Stay tuned into this adventure of a life that I would truly prefer to have missed.

I will have more, perhaps much more, to say on the subject of the two schools of thought on emotions in the days ahead at the pace that I am able to keep.

Thank you for being among my caring supporters.