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August 14, 2002
One Rule

When my high school teachers offered me knowledge years ago articulating the amazing insight into the flexibility of the US Constitution, I realized thinking ahead and predicting all possible outcomes could be a tough thing to do. Regardless of the specific laws it articulates, the constitution's ability to allow its own self repair and growth is an approach I thought wise then, and find wiser now.

Un/fortunately (really, as with anything, the word to choose there is a matter of perspective in the moment), for a long time, I only allowed myself to live life through the looking glass of ideas and philosophies easily defined as rules. In the last few years, I've come to an agreement within myself to minimize the rules so as to allow the most flexibility in my life. I've decided on One Rule: all things I do must be Life Affirming.

As I sit and think about that one governing idea I grasp to, I feel empowered by it. The idea of holding each thing I do to that simple standard feels right. I have long searched for "universal truths" about "right" and "wrong"; my inability to find any led me to this simplistic rule. I wasn't even able to identify a "rule" such as "Killing is wrong" that has a universal-ness to it I could easily embrace. In my belief system, killing a suffering being (as in euthanasia) is not "wrong" if it is their wish to no longer suffer. In fact, it potentially affirms the Life they have had and offers them dignity and freedom to choose the parameters of their death.

I was surprised to find so many definitions for the word "Life" in the dictionary. It seems like such a simple thing to define because I accept it as "existing," though that wasn't one of the choices. More accurately it is "the quality that distinguishes a vital and functional being from a dead body" (m-w.com).

In my own journey of self awareness, I have strived to appreciate that distinguishing quality and savor it because it is the fundamental gift required to create any other. I have found that in supporting that life and "maintaining [it] as true" (Random House Unabridged Dictionary definition for Affirm), I embrace my experiences with more vital energy. Each time I am able to focus on the positive state associated with my life rather than a temporal experience that might have caused me challenges/negativity in a particular time, I am rewarded by the gift of that moment which is often about the freedom to evolve my self, partners, family, friends and community.

 

 
 

 

 

I seek to grow in my life by solely measuring my progress over the duration of my experience. I measure this by asking myself questions as I go:

  • Am I living fully, being present in each of the moments I find myself in and at any point in time able to accept this as the last 5 minutes of life?
  • Am I loving freely, without expectation, giving without need and/or requirement of receiving?
  • Am I existing openly, sharing of myself with others without care of judgment - my own or anyone else's?
  • Am I building a stronger connection between my mind (that part of me that thinks), my body (that part of me that does) and my spirit (that part of me that intuitively knows)?
  • Moreover, am I transcending myself and connecting with the greater Self, to be present with the Oneness of all beings?
  • Am I living in balance with myself and the world around me as far as I am able to reasonably see my touch going?
  • Am I creating peace in my wake, walking with grace, living in the flow, and shifting energy around me through the greater awareness of my intuition?
  • Am I in integrity with myself? That is, are my actions and my words in alignment with each other?
  • Am I expressing myself fully, allowing all of the magical arts within me a place to foster and create positive energy?
  • Are my actions able to inspire others in their purity, intensity, integrity, ferocity, and sincerity?
  • Does my presence work toward enabling community and building something greater than my own self? Because I know we can co-create a sustainable community of impassioned artists uniquely expressing existence with the one-in-6-billon s/cent derived from the grace and certainty we each touch within our spirit; I stride toward that each moment.
  • Am I actively co-creating an environment which offers others a safe, loving, open space for their own self expression and healing?
  • Am I creating partnerships that further affirm these goals?
  • Am I living fearlessly, that is, in the strength of this moment without concern for the outcome?
  • Am I being honest with myself in each moment about where I am at? I have found that my own ability to be honest and let go of being right directly correlates to my own healing.
  • Am I open to my own self evolution? Am I listening when you tell me how you see me and willing to examine that information without fear, doubt, and emotion?
  • Am I having fun?
  • As I ask each of these questions and come to the one, two, few or many in which I am not living to my ideal standard, am I patient and compassionate in my own growth process?

I began meditating in October of 1998. The past few years have helped me grow into these thoughts and ways of approaching my life. When I first found Poi in Spring 2000, it became a launch pad into the magic of Poi dancing. Within that art form, I find a holistic answer to each of these questions. While I am engaged in the trance of the dance, flowing freely and openly, I am completely in a space of love and light and openness. I have moments when I am more than present with this moment; I am transcending this reality and present with all moments, open to all things. The combined gifts of the exercise, meditation, performance art and self expression that Poi offers has enabled my own self progression at an accelerated rate. For me, Poi is a vehicle by which my One Rule can be applied.

 

 

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Last modified: August 15
, 2002