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Personal Power


Discernment in Our Chaotic World

Early Morning Haze in the Sangres

Early Morning Haze in the Sangres

Truth and spiritual awareness need no trumpets or drums. Gregge Tiffen (Do The Angels Take a Vacation? – August, 2007)

What is true for each of us is that which inspires and deepens our awareness of our true power.

As I have a few times recently, this week has me calling forward a previously written post – updated what I’m observing currently.  The message seems especially appropriate given the political climate and, in my view, dearth of moral leadership in that arena.

Over the past several weeks as I’ve watched current events unfold and heard far too much fear-based rhetoric, I realized (not for the first time of course) just how disempowering the world’s messages are. The so called ‘news’ with its negativity, discord, confusion, conflicting information and disparate opinions that scream their version of what is true often fails to inform much less inspire or empower.

Beyond the news, everything in the world seems to calls for our attention jobs, family, friends, politicians, people in business who have something to sell. Take a look at your email in-box, your social media account, text messages, voice mail, and advertisements in places too numerous to mention. 

Are you inspired or empowered by what you see?  Or does the vista contribute to a sense of angst, confusion, chaos about conditions ‘out there’ beyond your control?

So, how the heck do you begin to know what’s ‘true’?  Within that question is perhaps one of the great opportunities of this time: learning the fine art of discernment – not what’s true ‘out there’, but what is true to you and for you. What are your criteria for discerning what to allow to enter your space (yes, you do have control over that!)?

If you know your criteria, are you rigorous in honoring them? (I’ll be taking some action in this regard this month!).

If you aren’t sure or your criteria could use buffing up (I’ll be doing some of that too!) give some attention to identifying the knowledge/tools/skills you have to guide you.

A great starting point is remembering the truth of what Gregge suggests in the quote above: truth is not boisterous or external, rather it is quiet and inside. The goal is to find your truth. What is true for each of us is that which inspires and deepens our awareness of our true power. What inspires you? What deepens your awareness of how powerful you truly are?

Here are some other ways to develop and sharpen your discernment:

  • Engage curiosity, letting go of the need to know, understand or be right

  • Be open to other possibilities – open mind, open heart

  • Develop your instinct/conviction and listen to it while being open to making adjustments

  • Befriend paradox – in a world of infinite possibilities two ideas that appear contradictory may each be true even when they seem to be polar opposites

  • Be gentle (with yourself and others)

  • Avoid win/loose conflict, competition, and confrontation

  • Look to nature, her beauty, her rhythm

    Enjoy the journey to discovering and expanding all that which is truly you AND true for you! 

The Labyrinth - One of My Places for Finding What Is True for Me … Luke agrees!

The Labyrinth - One of My Places for Finding What Is True for Me … Luke agrees!



The Gift of Retrograde Planets

On the trail out back as the sun peeks over the peaks

On the trail out back as the sun peeks over the peaks

The need for adjustments within our personal life cycles exists for the same reason that galaxies are kept from bumping into one another; both are a consequence of some extremely intelligent avatars somewhere in space having created and continuing to create planet Earth within the whole scheme of the harmonic flow of energy often heard in the music of the spheres. (Patrece on behalf of P Systems –

The more we are aware of retrograde conditions and their possible influences, the more we are able to navigate through our life experiences with greater control and clarity. (Gregge Tiffen -

First, a disclaimer: I’m no expert in astrology. What I’m sharing comes not from decades of studying the planets and their influence. Rather it comes from considering what Patrece and Gregge Tiffen have shared on this topic and from observing my own life’s conditions and events. It also comes from my conviction that, despite so much evidence to the contrary, we live in a universe that is divinely ordered and anchored in love, a universe in which we are not victims unless we choose not to receive the gifts the universe offers.

What inspires me to share is that the planet Mercury went retrograde earlier this week as it does several times each year. It reminded me of the prevailing attitude when planets go retrograde: life is disrupted, ‘bad’ things happen, and that we just need to suffer through. Such an attitude casts us as victims, putting attention on the disruption and ignoring the opportunities planets in retrograde offer: gifts from a benevolent universe.

Planets do not go retrograde without purpose. Their doing helps maintain order in the cosmos, ensuring the universal “harmonic flow of energy”. Adjustments are required. Planets adjust.

As above, so below. As a part of this intelligent universe, we are given the opportunity to use the cycle of time when a planet is retrograde to do the same: adjust. Taking time to assess and to make changes during these cycles can help us avoid bumping into ourselves, one another, and the events life brings our way. (Imagine a world where we each did that, including our leaders!)

When it went retrograde this week, Mercury joined four other planets that were already in retrograde. Yes, your math is correct: five planets are currently in retrograde. Perhaps you’ve wondered why the world (and maybe your life) seems crazier and disrupted to the extreme.  Rather than looking at the chaos, I’m choosing to look to the opportunities to slow down and consider what adjustments might serve me.

Mercury (Ruler #2*) is the planet that influences decision making and communication, including all of the technology we use in both. In retrograde it presents opportunities (indeed more than one!) to slow down and pay close attention to detail in all communication, that coming in and that we’re sending out. (I’m doing my best to practice this message as I focus on this post.) This is also a time to identify and make adjustments to communication habits or patterns that aren’t working well, to examine how you manage time and energy, to assess projects underway and adjust to get/keep them on track. Notice what puts you on edge as a guide to where adjustments are needed. Mercury’s retrograde is short – ending on July 31 – but it’s potential is powerful.

Saturn (Ruler #7) retrograde invites us to look at how we use our minds. This is a good time to observe and eliminate clutter in our thought processes and to bring forward mental qualities that may be dormant. Exercise your mind and explore what keeps you from manifesting the results you’d like and refine your operating style. This retrograde ends on September 19.

Pluto (Ruler #8) influences money and success. When in retrograde it invites us to review and make sure our financial house is in order. A key question to ask is ‘what needs to be reworked to put myself on a more solid financial footing?’ This opportunity exists until October 4.

Jupiter (Ruler #6) retrograde provides opportunities to look at health and relationships, including your relationship with you, and to explore how your home environment supports you (or doesn’t). Jupiter ends its retrograde cycle on August 10.

Finally, the influence of Neptune (Ruler #9) retrograde is mostly beneath the surface, offering the opportunity to look deep within to what inspires us and what gives life meaning. It’s a time when deep reflection and solitude can serve us well. We have this opportunity until November 27.

How will you unwrap, receive, and put the gifts of these retrogrades to use? Start by slowing down, paying attention, and being curious.

* Gregge used a numbering system rather than the customary planet names in his work, as you’ll see if you visit his website for more detail on these retrogrades. Here’s the link:

Cool Hand Luke pauses for a photo op on an early morning hike to the Zigurat

Cool Hand Luke pauses for a photo op on an early morning hike to the Zigurat



Fairy Godmother to a Shero

Luke is a fan too!

Luke is a fan too!

And, she thought with wicked delight, it’d put Brindle in a tizzy to see her using the Way Between to neither concede to injustice nor stay sullenly in her room all winter. Rivera Sun The Lost Heir: An Unruly Royal. An Urchin Queen. A Quest for Justice

Ari Ara is my kind of shero. And, I’m proud that author Rivera Sun calls me her “fairy godmother in the mountains by the Great Sand Dunes.” It takes a village of fairy godmothers, supporters, family, friends, along with a creative, caring writer like Rivera to bring Ari Ara to life in mythical times as treacherous as those of our world today.

Rivera does that with aplomb and a creative flair that makes The Lost Heir (the sequel to Ari Ara’s first adventure, The Way Between) an important story for our times. She weaves the kind of stories needed to inspire creative approaches to looking at our world anew and to point to possibilities for creating a just and peace-filled world that works for all.

Having successfully completed a community publishing campaign in late 2018 and early 2019, the first edition of The Lost Heir is hot off the presses and the countdown to its release date – May 25 – has begun.

As you can see, Luke is a fan too. He was excited last fall when the author’s edition arrived in the mail.   

I could say so much more about Rivera, this book (indeed ALL of her writing) and its relevance in and importance to our world today. But this day finds my attention drawn to another life event, so I’ll close with this link where you can read much more AND pre-order a copy for yourself and another for someone you love.

Here’s a little taste of what you’ll find when you click that link …

“Going beyond dragon-slayers and sword-swingers, The Lost Heir blends fantasy and adventure with social justice issues in an unstoppable story that will make you cheer! … “
“With all the fun of a sword-swinging adventure, but without the violence, The Lost Heir spins a spectacular story with strong female characters and powerful social justice themes. "Armed" with nonviolence and love, Ari Ara sets out to restore the honor and dignity of both her peoples. A shero with spunk and spark, Ari Ara confronts prejudice, discrimination, bullying, and injustice with all the action, adventure, magic, and fantasy that readers love!”

I can only imagine what Ari Ara would do in these mountains!

I can only imagine what Ari Ara would do in these mountains!



Keep Your Faith!

And there was light!

And there was light!

Evil thrives in darkness. We must let our courage and conviction shine, so that not even the smallest shadow shall find a doorway in which to hide. … No sacrifice is too great. No undertaking is too demanding. No commitment is too excessive, in order to maintain faith. Gregge Tiffen (It’s Springtime: Flow With The Power of Nature – March, 2007)

Light! Light! Light! The world needs our light, the light of our faith, the light of understanding, the light of knowing that we are here in this moment in time as a small, yet integral, part of an unfolding Universe. The darker the world seems, the more brightly our light is needed. The more we sense fear, the greater we need to love.

That is how we change the world. That is how we learn and grow.

Reversing its letters, ‘evil’ becomes ‘LIVE’. LIVE! Live is life. Life is light. In Universal terms, life is also abundance, beauty, harmony, joy, love, peace, power.

Evil is none of these. Indeed it is their absence. From ancient times to this moment, history is replete with the horrors of evil. Hence, the conviction of faith and strong beliefs along with courage are necessary for us to say ‘no’ to evil and ‘yes!’ to live life in its truest sense.

History is overflowing with examples of this choice as well: the love exuded by the man known as Jesus; the sage wisdom of the Buddha; and in more recent times the sacred, loving activism of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, and elders who the peaceful ‘Water is Life’ movement at Standing Rock.

While we know these names, it is wise to remember that throughout history countless others have taken a stand for light as well. You have. I have. Each of us in our unique ways dared to shine a light to break the darkness where evil dwells. 

Daily we have innumerable opportunities to do the same. We do so when we choose kind thoughts and speak words that match them. A patient smile while standing in a slow moving line radiates light as does a sincere, quiet ‘Thank you’ when we are served.

We shine light in the darkness when we receive and return the love of our pets and of all the flora and fauna of nature. And, who among us has not experienced the shift of a good belly laugh (or, even a slight chuckle)? We shine light when we sing, whether alone in the shower or in harmony with others.

These seemingly small acts are, in fact, huge. When taken collectively, they have the power to crack open hearts and shift mass consciousness to a higher vibration from which evil gets no support.

Up close and personal, choosing light is important as well. Each of our seemingly small acts of light strengthens our personal capacity for compassion in the face of evil. Each builds our conviction and our courage to be bold in choosing light, to keep the faith. We hold the power to shine the light of life in the darkest shadows where evil dwells. May we do so moment to moment, step by step.

Need of a little inspiration to shine? click here -     

Morning Light Filters Through the Woods

Morning Light Filters Through the Woods



It's Time To Reclaim Our Personal Power

Spring Snow in the ‘Hood

Spring Snow in the ‘Hood

There is nothing impotent about the human mind. Gregge Tiffen (Life in the World Hereafter: The Journey Continues)

Let that sink in for a moment … or two. There is n o t h I n g impotent about the human mind! That includes you, me, each and every one of us humans on the planet.

It seems though that over time (a very, very long time) we have forgotten that we were given this power by design and by a benevolent (I believe) Universe. Our ‘forgetfulness’ is not accidental. Though that’s a story for another time, let’s just say that individuals created institutions (both secular and not) that have chipped away at this fundamental truth through the ages. After all, much better for ‘them’ if we think ‘they’ hold the power. Much better for ‘them’ if we come to rely on their power, rather than the potent power we each have.

That’s where my thoughts about this week’s story of corruption involving dozens of wealthy individuals and several so-called ‘ivy-league’ universities took me. As I reflected more on this and other current events, I sensed (more than saw) a pattern: people with power derived outside of themselves (money, position, etc.) fear losing that power. They will do ANYthing to retain it (cheat, lie, got to war … just to name a few). 

They have no sense of the personal power of the mind or its (and, thus their) connection to an infinite, powerful Universe with which they co-create.

When we believe that power is external to us fear is a prime motivator. One need only read a bit of history to see where that path has taken and is taking us.

When we understand the power of the human mind, the personal power that we have each been given as humans on planet Earth, a different motivator emerges: love.  We come to view the world from a kinder, gentler perspective, one grounded in compassion, care, cooperation, collaboration. We listen to inner guidance rather than being led by fear-mongering ‘leaders’.

Reclaiming this power and learning to use it is not just our right, it is our responsibility. We each have to do this in our unique way, in our own time, at our pace. There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ formula. Our job, yours and mine, is to embrace our personal power and, then to take the next step – wherever that leads.

This isn’t a new idea. Indeed it’s as old as time. I’ve written about this power directly and indirectly in most every blog post for almost six years. But the context today feels different. We are in the midst of massive breakdowns of systems we may have thought were solid forever. Daily we are making choices about how to respond. We are waking up, taking blinders off, and, sometimes, seeing a side of humanity that’s not so pretty.

Humanity and the planet, indeed our own learning throughout time, invite us to step up and step in anew, embracing the power we’ve been given not grasping for power sourced outside ourselves.

I’m in (even if I don’t know what that looks like from one day to the next). What about you?

Cool Hand Luke Loves to Follow His Own Path

Cool Hand Luke Loves to Follow His Own Path