What's in the gallery?

We dissolve stuck and rewrite patterns. We apply radical playfulness to life (when we feel like it!), embarking on internal adventures (credo of Safety First). We have a fake band called Solved By Cake. We build invisible sanctuaries, invent words and worlds, breathe awe and wonder.

We are not impressed by monsters. Except when we are. We explore the connections between internal territories and surrounding environment to learn what marvelously supportive delicious space feels like, and how to take exquisite care of ourselves. We transform things.* We glow wild.**

* For example: Desire, fear, worry, pain-and-trauma, boundaries, that problematic word which rhymes with flaweductivity.

** Fair warning: Self-fluency has been known to lead to extremely subversive behavior, including treasuring yourself unconditionally, unapologetically taking up space, experiencing outrageously improbable levels of self-acceptance, and general rejoicing in aliveness.


Wish #237: “I was having this discussion in a taxi heading downtown”

very personal adsPersonal ads. They’re … personal! Very.

Each week I write a Very Personal Ad (aka Vision-Possibility-Anticipation) to practice wanting, and get clarity about my desires. Sometimes wanting feels conflicted or just plain hard, and that’s okay.

At the very least, useful noticings about my relationship with wanting. It all counts.

I have an image in my head.

I see a machine filled with dozens of colored bouncing balls.

It feels like a game. Is this how lottery tickets get picked? Or a game show? I’m not sure.

That is what my wishes feel like this week. There are so many of them, and they are all moving and colliding. I try to follow one and immediately bump into all the others and lose track.

I’ve been trying to track the bouncing balls for three days, and it isn’t happening, so I’m going to let all bounces of color be this week’s wishes: letting them move around in whatever ways they want.

I don’t have to know how they are interconnected, I don’t have to know what they mean. Just letting them move.

Either something will reveal itself or I will get better at allowing them to do their thing. Or both.

And maybe that is my wish, the wish behind the wishes.

What do I want?

I ran into some outrage this week.

Actually, I ran into some really intense sexism, and then a sense of frustration and helplessness, and then outrage.

I didn’t like it, any of those experiences.

One of the interesting things about being someone who doesn’t speak is that I can’t just react in the moment. I have to choose which situations deserve my time and energy. Is this worthy of a post-it note? If it isn’t, I don’t say it.

Silence requires a much more intense understanding of Not Everything Requires A Response, which is both a wonderful superpower and a guiding principle.

What I want is a way to speak up about things I care about, in a way that is clear, swift, compassionate, calm and filled with love.

What do I want?

It has to do with activism, and some things that are related to activism.

What do I want?

I want to be the Calmest Activist.

I want the superpower of Glowing Love In Response to Not-Love:

No matter how stupid, thoughtless or bigoted someone’s words are, I see that this is someone who is temporarily disconnected from themeselves and from truth/love. From truth-love.

And I respond (whether to them or inside myself) with truth-love. I fill up on love and compassion, and I glow love and compassion through my space and into the world, strengthening my own connection to life and aliveness.

I think this is called Grace. Another word that begins with G, and another form of glowing.

What do I want?

To rest into these superpowers as I move into activism. To combine activism with Living Quietly, which is also a form of activism.

My activism is internal: self-fluency, taking up space in my life, being the loving queen of my internal kingdom, bringing light to the corners. Occupying and decolonizing. Eliminating and illuminating.

And my activism is external: speaking out when it comes things I care about tremendously. Also: Creating deeply safe space/culture for play and practice. Like what we have here. The Playground (my center in Portland) and the Floop (my online community for practicing self-fluency) are spaces like this.

What do I want?

I want the superpower of working towards social justice while staying calm: Activism Without Anger. It is its own revolution.

Not that anger is a bad thing: anger can be very useful, and it is certainly full of information if we look there. This particular Revolution however has to do with making change from a starting point of deep, steady, trust-filled calm.

What do I want?

It has to do with clean, clear, healthy boundaries.

And it might also have to do with finding a way to exclude certain elements in order to be more welcoming of other ones.

Or: to exclude behaviors in order to be more welcoming of qualities. I’m not sure. Still figuring that out.

So it also has to do with insights about healthy boundaries.

What do I want?

I want to institute (my new favorite verb) some changes in my fishing village, which is also an institute (noun).

It is the weirdest thing, teaching people to fish.

You know what they say: Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

Sure, fine, that’s a starting point. It isn’t necessarily the answer though.

Teaching individuals how to fish is a very time-consuming way to make sure the world gets fed. It also reinforces the construct that there is something special about me, the person who already knows how to fish, and it doesn’t support an experience of us being equals who are sharing in something.

So instead of being a teacher — a “let me show you the five best ways to fish” teacher, I’m more interested in creating a community where fishing happens. Everyone in the village goes fishing together and delights in each other’s company.

People watch how I fish and they invent their own techniques that suit them. We play together. We make sure the world is fed. That’s how my fishing village works, and it’s been working great, and now it is time to institute some changes.

What do I want?

Let me pause here because I don’t actually want fishing as metaphor: it doesn’t feel sustainable, and also I don’t want to harm any fish.

So F.I.S.H. is going to stand for Forschungs Institut for Sustainable Healing.

Forschung is German for research. It’s a research institute, and the fishing lines are threads where we investigate self-fluency and sustainable healing. We work on our stuff. We play with our stuff.

We institute change. At our institute.

The secret name of my institute is Graceland. It is a place to experience Grace.

It is a place to respond through not responding, to interact with love, to fill up on my thank-you heart

“I said hey senorita, that’s astute I said why don’t we get together and call ourselves an institute…” — Paul Simon

What do I want?

To find a loving response (whether out loud or not) for someone who is upset that he doesn’t have any fish, and sees no connection between his lack of fish and his refusal to go near the water or be involved in any aspect of the work of fishing.

That person can choose to blame the institute for their fishlessness. I can make space for that.

And, at the same time, in order for the fishing village to be a safe place to practice fishing, we can’t have people there who aren’t respectful of the culture.

The culture of fishing and of our village says:

You can learn by observing, by listening, by playing or by fishing itself. You can learn by asking, by trying, by swimming, by whispering to the fish. You can fish how I fish, and: you don’t have to. You can invent your own ways, or be inspired by someone else’s. The only thing that matters: take responsibility for your fishing.

What do I want?

I love having a fishing village. I take great pleasure in my own Forschung into Sustainable Healing. I take even more pleasure in observing other people fish. I delight in their creative solutions. I rejoice over their metaphorical fish.

Here’s another thing though: I don’t get paid to run the fishing village.

Which is my responsibility.

It is partly because the fishing village is very expensive to run, and mostly because of my habit of letting all proceeds go to the part of the river that seems to need them the most.

That is something I need to do some more fishing on, so I can do some Sustainable Healing with it. It is My Stuff, and I take responsibility for having made choices over the past few years that weren’t in support my own well-being.

Anyway, on days when it is pleasurable to have a fishing village, which is most of the days, I don’t really mind that I don’t get paid. If someone shows up and dumps on me because think they haven’t learned how to fish even though they haven’t participated in or even observed any of the thousands of fishing expeditions, I suddenly lose interest.

So I want to decide what to do about this.

Where/how do I want to start?

Putting it here. Processing at the Floop. Skipping lots of stones at Rally. Trusting that this is good. It is good that this is happening now. Whatever I choose will be useful.

Trusting as well that it is good that this week’s wishes took an extra four days to come to the surface. Trusting that All Timing Is Right Timing.

Anything else coming up?

I am asking for a Perfect Simple Solution, to all of this.

What are the qualities of my wish?

Same as last time.

Calm. Steadiness. Peacefulness. Trust. Composure. Delight. Play. Readiness.

And the superpowers of Safety First, and I Can’t Do This Wrong Because All Results Of An Experiment Are Useful.

What would help me move forward on this? How am I going to play?

Interviewing slightly-future-me who has already made progress on this.

Asking her for advice.

Drawing a crown and a heart on my palm. Thinking: Crown. Heart.

What is my clue?

Honey. It’s on my necklace.

Anything else?

H is for HAT!

Dancing mice, wearing hats.

What else do I want?

Seeds planted without explanation, a mix of secret agent code and silent retreat dreams. Things I’m working on, or might be, someday…

  • May Peacefulness Prevail!
  • Announcements.
  • Everything is getting easier.
  • Miracles everywhere.
  • Regular gigs at the ballroom, which is also the Spiegelsaal.
  • This doesn’t require my input!
  • Ha, it’s so perfect that it turned out like this.
  • Past me is a GENIUS.
  • I have what I need, and I appreciate it.
  • There is money for this.
  • Trust and steadiness. I can see why this moment is good.
  • Hawaii.
  • I am fearless and confident, and I do the brave things and give myself sparklepoints, and it is not even a big deal that I did the brave things but I still get sparklepoints, yay.

This week’s ops?

I completed last week’s op: finishing the almost-done Last Hat. I haven’t done anything with it, and I suspect it is because I am not completely sure I want a fishing village. Having a fishing village brings me great joy, so of course I want it, and at the same time I don’t unless the boundaries change, so I need to figure that out.

I’m playing with…

“What is the wockawock? Whose wockawock is it? What opportunities/treasure does this wockawock provide?”

Progress report on past Very Personal Ads.

So. Last week, aka a different kind of letting go…

My wish had to do quitting W and not W-ing anymore. Of course the first thing I noticed is that I do pretty much nothing but W, and that I have been in training for W for my entire life.

I had some huge moments of success with this over the past week, and some huge moments of realization about how pervasive W is in my life.

I had a big understanding, thanks to Monsieur LeBlanc of the Other Agency, that Shame is basically backwards-W, it is W-ing towards the past. And that the antidote to W is presence and glowing.

It is getting easier for me to not-W. For example, I am not-W-ing right now about my fishing village that is an institute, even though I don’t know what my decision will be yet. Feeling hopeful and inspired. I can’t imagine how the release of W will continue to change my life, but I suspect it will be huge.

Thank you, writing. Thank you, me who asked.

Keep me company?

Consider this an open invitation to deposit wishes, gwishes, visions, personal ads. Small or large. In any form you like, there’s no one right way. Updates on past experiments are welcome too, as is anything sparked for you.

Commenting culture: This is safe space for creative exploration. We are on permanent vacation from care-taking and advice-giving. We are here to play.

Let’s throw some things in the pot! And, as always, Amnesty. Leave a wish any time you want.


20 Responses to Wish #237: “I was having this discussion in a taxi heading downtown”

  1. Elizabeth
    Twitter: Elizabetherself

    Graceland! It is such a portal, that album. A potion and a portal. What a perfect name! Gazillions more gazelle points!! <3

  2. Mary Tracy
    Twitter: MaryTracy

    I really wanna be part of a fishing village, because I desperately need to learn how to fish.

    So my wish is to find a fishing village. Or learn how to fish :P
    Which, come to think of it, is a fascinating wish to have on the week I moved to a house by the sea :S
    Mary Tracy recently posted… A Tiny Love Message To Women Who Might Be Hurting

  3. Kaari
    Twitter: kaarib

    F.I.S.H.!!! I am delighted by this, and the lack of actual fishing or fish-harm is happy! (Catching Salmon: they are green gummy fishes, yes.)

    Holding the love and trust as I sing lusty ballads with gusto. I don’t know why, it just seems right. As does the time of Powza and uncertainty that I’m experiencing.

  4. Danielle
    Twitter: somaphile

    LOVE the Calmest Activist.


  5. brooklynchick says:

    Wow. A lot is happening! Not sure what to say except 1,000,000 sparklepoints for you!

  6. Kathleen Avins
    Twitter: spiralsongkat

    There’s so much for me to reflect on here. I will be thinking a lot about backwards W, and glowing (and humming!)and presence. Also, I have fallen in love with Graceland.

    Taking my gwishes on silent retreat this week, except for one whispered intention: “…’cause every little thing gonna be all right…”
    Kathleen Avins recently posted… See you on the other side.

  7. Leni says:

    omg, just so much of what’s been in my head since NYE:

    -thoughts about social justice and my role in that
    -Sustainability. Sustain ability. sustain-ability.
    -connecting my vrious brilliant, talented, skilled friends in different places so we can be more awesome together
    -and save the earth, which is a proxy and not a proxy

    Graceland. oh hell YES. Paul Simon. and it invokes Elvis and oh dont even let me get started on ELVIS, because i will go off on his manifold blessings.

    Fractals! this really helps me put soem pieces of the pattern togetehr.

  8. Max Daniels
    Twitter: maxdaniels

    Yes, may peacefulness prevail!

    Also Hawaii. May Hawaii prevail!
    Max Daniels recently posted… Wayfinder’s Quest Post #99: Stripper lashes and mermaid sex

  9. Hannah Savannah
    Twitter: Hannah_Savannah

    “Graceland! It is such a portal, that album” – yes!!
    putting on graceland for the day.

  10. Claire P
    Twitter: making_space

    I have been floored all day by the beauty and power and promise of these wishes, Havi. Boundaries, activism (internal and external), calm, grace… oh yes, all of this. And sustainable healing research, set up as a self-sustaining institute… oh, oh yes, yes. I love and bless all these wishes with all my heart. A million blessings!

  11. Kristi says:

    I am loving the Paul Simon references! I am going to listen to this song immediately and do the Calm Activist chair dance.

  12. Marialena says:

    So many clues… Graceland that is a place of pilgrimage in addition to the Paul Simon album, as in Jim Jarmusch’s Mystery Train.

    So many clues… Goldfish that are also crackers without harming any fish.

    So many clues… releasing W, seems impossible. But: nothing is wrong.

    So excited to learn more about the HAT and the communities that unfold from the center of calm.
    Marialena recently posted… A comb, a knife, and a fistful of salt: the escape of Blancaflor

  13. Spike says:

    Lurker mouse delurking to say thank you.

    Thank you for living out loud on Post-It notes, thank you for whistling on your way to the riverside. Thank you for the swimming demonstrations, thank you for speaking the language of the fish where I could hide in the bushes and listen, plucking the vocabulary and grammar from the lapping rivulets. And then write my own poems to the fishes, scattering the fragments on the sparkles.

    Thank you for the hard and the good and the beautiful.

    Thank you.

  14. Claire P
    Twitter: making_space

    I am throwing a heart shaped stone into the gwishing well for the sweetness and delightful enthusiasm that is coming my way via sparkling stone I found in the river to, well, keep coming! I am gwishing to meet the parts of me that have missed this so much and feel a little vulnerable with surety and confidence that All Is Well, that This Moment Is Allowed To Be This Sweet, that my safety and self-ness are not impacted, eroded or traded in by receiving sweetness and enthusiasm from outside me. I am wishing that the stars align, but even if they don’t that this be the start of much sweetness in my life.

    *fairy dust*

  15. BL says:

    I have just recently found your blog of great joy and helpfulness, Havi. This is random and not particularly about the post, and yet, all about the post because of the helpfulness of sharing your process. Mindfulness tends to tickle my maudlin beasts, who delight in getting down and blue, it seems.

    So, my monsters – I think about as slugs. They just SHOW UP!! and then, they cover things in this oozy goo that is a challenge to remove. The slugs dredge up the past and get ready to duke it out with things/times/behaviors/reactions/action, et cetera. They have their oozy boxing gloves and are READY TO DUKE IT OUT!!

    When I draw them I tend to draw them all scowly and pokadotty. What maybe one of them whispered to me this morning was.. maybe.. maybe.. maybe they are not scowly? Maybe this is !!!JOYOUS SLUG BUSINESS!!! for them? Maybe its that they are SOO GLAD TO HELP ME and defend me and maybe to oozy goo?

    Maybe its love? Maybe I misunderstood this WHOLE TIME!?

    maybe! I am open to the glad heartedness of maybe!

    Yall feel like my right people and that bumps up my glad heartedness to police code 808! SO MUCH BASS!!

    Anyway. This! and Sweet Cinnaminny tea and Flame Lillies!! Glorious Gloriosas for you, Selma and everyone!


    • BL says:

      Pssst..808 in a GOOD WAY!! Like disturbing the peace with so much Hoopledeeray and Giddy Galumphing about!! HOOPLEDEERAY!! 808!!

  16. VickiB says:

    @BL: ooooh, slugs! A clew!

    The Forschungs Institute for Sustainable Healing! That speaks to me. I love that kind of fishing! My gwish for the coming week is for research, forschung, to use what I know to learn more about sustainable healing. Sustainable happiness. Sustainable health.

  17. Magda
    Twitter: CMUDStorySpider

    “Worry is prayer for things you don’t want.” – The Wailin’ Jennys. :)


  18. vvvviva says:

    So glad to be in the fishing village, humming to the fish, which may be gracefully going towards Graceland.
    (BTW, I am not the hugest Elvis fan, but Graceland was really surprisingly inspirational, zebra prints aside.)

    Yay for recognizing worry. For me, I call thoughts planning which are really worry. The plans are actually based on worry. So of course, I am not satisfied with the plans that are designed to produce the lowest amount of worry — because there is still worry!

    A compass could help me swim out of the worry whirlpool towards the graceland of fish….
    I was actually just given a compass and am worried that it’s a bad sign that I didn’t do it myself.

    What I want? A breathing space between worries. Sort of like the breathing between contractions. Eventually the contractions don’t come anymore and there is just joy and amazement and confidence and breathing to inflate big orange balloons.

Leave a reply

CommentLuv badge