Finding True Love and Passion Again

December 8, 2015

The show mentioned below is now available as a podcast.

Would you like to know the secret to true marital happiness? Check back here and on my website: http://www.coupleswisdom.com. Soon I will post the true secret to long term sexual joy, and finding true happiness together.


The Door to freedom is wide open.

August 22, 2013

Rumi says:

Why do you stay in prison

when the door is so wide open?

 

And Mary Oliver illuminates the path after breaking out of prison:

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice–
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do–
determined to save the only life you could save.

Both of these wonderful poets–separated by nearly 800 years–offer us similar wisdom: our limitations are self-imposed. Freedom is our birthright, and the relentless beating heart of inner joy is always there waiting for us to remember it.

May the wisdom of these poets shower us all with determination to see beauty, serve others and make or listen to music as often as possible.

Blessings to you, dear visitor. Please also visit my website: http://www.coupleswisdom.com. You will read there that I am now available by appointment on Facetime.

Email me anytime: drlee@coupleswisdom.com

 

 


The Journey of Courage

March 25, 2011

In Dream Works, Mary Oliver says:
The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice —
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do —
determined to save
the only life you could save.

In this stunning poem Mary Oliver articulates the painful choices authentic living makes inevitable. 

Rumi puts it differently:

Why do you stay in prison when the door is so wide open?

Why indeed? Why do we cling to our chains? We hold desperately to our addictions, convincing ourselves on a thousand days that giving them up would be an unbearable loss. We don’t deserve freedom, and probably couldn’t handle it, says the inner Voice of false fear.

We stay in relationships that are wrong for us because our profound suspicion that we are unlovable makes us believe that an incompatible bird in the hand is better than no bird at all. The Voice repeats the refrain: Who would love us, given our weight, age, wrinkles, receding hairline, small bank account or character defects? How could someone whose main assets are a good heart, a sense of humor, a love of touch and willingness to keep on loving find anyone who wanted that?

We stay in jobs that don’t begin to make use of our gifts, and justify this choice as some kind of hero’s journey. Who are we to have financial solvency or even abundance and daily joy as well? If we have one, surely we don’t deserve the other too.

The bad advice of other voices around us can be frightening. The child who lets us know that a break-up would cause pain can so easily be one of the voices clamoring to give us the advice that keeps us stuck. Is modeling a life of unhappiness really a gift to the child?

Distinguishing between the times when we’re wrongly stuck and when we’re appropriately committed to doing whatever it takes is the great dilemma. The poet tells us “it’s already late enough,” and she seems to suggest that we’ll know when and what we have to do.

May it be so.

Blessings to you dear reader. Please visit me at www.coupleswisdom.com for free reports and videos as well as life-enhancing products. Visit the Poetry and Inspiration page to see videos of Rumi recitations accompanied by beautiful violin music. Visit the Advice Blog there to get free professional advice.  Please write me at drlee@coupleswisdom.com.


The Couples’ Journey

August 18, 2010

Mary Oliver says:

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice —

though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”

each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.

But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do —
determined to save
the only life you could save
.

When we finally see a direction for making a difference in this world, Mary Oliver urges us to take our courage in hand and follow that path.

For me, this applies to relationships as well. Eventually, we see that our unhappiness in relationship is most often due to our attachment to our own ego demands:  I want, my needs are, I insist, I need, I’m right. If you would simply see the world as I see it, we’d both be so much happier!

That approach leads to pain and estrangement. Instead, we must learn this hard lesson: When I have a problem with anyone, it’s I who must change. Yes–even though (according to my ego) I’m right, I’m innocent, and arguably more high-minded. (If I truly am these things, then I should easily be able to show empathy, compassion, and kindness.)

Deep down awareness that there’s no one I can change except myself saves so much grief!

I disagree with Ms. Oliver about her final line, however. I believe I can help to save others’ lives, and that doing so is a moral imperative. I can help to feed starving children. I can stand by and offer loving support during another’s illness and possible death. I can help my treasured psychotherapy patients find their way.

Blessings on your journey on this precious day, dear visitor. May the sun within you burn brightly today!

===============

Please visit www.coupleswisdom.com. There are many treasures there.


Hearing Your Own Voice

November 10, 2009

Mary Oliver says:

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting their bad advice-

though the whole house
began to tremble and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.
“Mend my Life!” each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,

though their melancholy
was terrible.

lt was already late enough,
and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.

But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,

that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,

determined to do the only thing you could do-
determined to save
the only life that you could save
.

What is it that you know you must do? How easily we forget that, whether we’re young or old, it’s already late enough– already late for choosing to make the difference we can make.

It’s always seemed to me to be the most important work-related question of life: how much am I making my life count? How much difference am I making? “I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world” is another, wonderfully compelling Mary Oliver line.

What can I do to help pass health care for all? What can I do to discourage the President from wasting more precious lives on foreign soil? Very little perhaps, though I can learn to listen to my own voice. I can lend my voice to those who are mobilizing coordinated efforts. I can stand with those who demand accountability for legislators who serve the interests of insurance companies over the interests of their constituents. I can stand with those who want to save lives by an early end to two futile wars.

Most of all, though, I can share my gift for providing caring support to my clients and readers and students. Whatever your gift is, dear visitor, we need more of you. Thank  you cellists, gardeners, poets, floor installers, teachers, and doctors. Thank you kind people and strangers who smile; thank you children who make me laugh.

Thank you Creator, for all that is our life! Tomorrow, may I find new ways to serve.

=======================================

Blessings, dear visitor. Please post a response here, or email me at drvlee1234@aol.com.


Our wild and precious lives

August 23, 2009

Mary Oliver says:

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting their bad advice-
though the whole house
began to tremble and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my Life!” each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.

lt was already late enough,
and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.

But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do the only thing you could do-
determined to save
the only life that you could save.

What will we do with our one and only wild and precious lives? Speaking just now with a dear friend about a dying parent brings up the question once again. How much time do I have left? How about you? Our time on this earth is limited. For any of us, young or old, there is the possibility that the time we have left may be much shorter than we hope.

On the other hand, perhaps long life is our fate. Will we fulfill the responsibility such a gift implies?

Regardless of the length of our lives, the big issue is what we make of them. How much will we serve? How will we impact our environment? What will we leave behind? What about the larger human family? Will the children who are growing up in poverty 15 miles from where I live feel any impact on their lives because of me? Will those I know who have a life-threatening illness feel my support and caring as they face their ultimate challenge?

Will the beloved members of my own family remember how much I cherished them? Will they remember moments of joy and laughter? A precious 7-year-old gave me 7 hugs today. “You and Chippie (my dog) are the best things in the whole world!” he said recently. It was a treasured moment, even though I know others are the “best thing” on other days. I hope I bring as much joy to his life as he has already brought to mine. He and his siblings and cousins are all the motivation I will ever need to make a difference with my life.

Several years before her only and final illness, I walked with my mother in the rhododendron garden in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. It was in full flower. Glorious blossoms of fuchsia, pink, white, yellow and scarlett surrounded us and towered above us.

Mama was enchanted. “Thank you God!” she said over and over. “Thank you for this beauty!” It was a moment I’ll never forget. The beauty of that garden was beyond imagining. Both of us put aside our conflicts and issues as we drank it in. In beauty it’s begun. The miraculous moments give us the willingness to open our hearts.

I disagree with the last line by dear Mary Oliver quoted above. It’s not only my own life I can save. I can impact yours as well, and you mine. I can smile deeply into your eyes even though we don’t know each other. I can write these words and through them, wish you heartfelt blessings on this day.

Blessings, dear visitor. Whether you’re in a college or prison or hotel, whether you’re resting before going to battle again, whether you’re at home and lonely or happy, I wish you the openness to the miraculous moments that are always there.

Finally, more words from Mary Oliver.  ….whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world calls to your imagination….” You have a place in the family of things.

===================

You may leave a response here or email me at drvlee1234@aol.com

My books The Rumi Secret, and Ecstatic Lovemaking are available on my website http://www.drvictorialee.com or on Amazon. Follow me on Twitter, or contact me on Facebook.