You know what I love even more than writing?
Talking.

Ok, maybe that’s not true. Maybe I love talking and writing equally. I’ll have to think about it. Let’s see…

I love the flow of talking, the journey of arriving an unexpected conclusions in real time. Especially when you have a good juicy conversation with someone you connect with.

That’s what I feel I have with Tiger Singleton, also known as Tigmonk. He’s an author and spiritual … well, not teacher. Share-er. He shares wisdom and insight and the joy of remembering that life is a f#@%ng miracle.

Our live, unplanned, random conversations are about spirituality, life, death, reality, truth, love, and anything else you can think of.

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We completely acknowledge that it’s all bullshit, and we might just be insane.

You can stream or download the podcasts on Tigmonk.com.

The most recent ones are also on Soundcloud.

And you can even find them on youtube:

 

So, I love talking.

Why do I love writing? Because I can spend as long as I want crafting the words. I have control. Not as spontaneous and vulnerable, but perhaps deeper and clearer, more concise.

Both have their good points and their limitations.

So I hope to do more of both. Continuing with the Podcast, and regular writing on my new website http://www.mayaliladivento.com (coming soon!!!).

 

Coyote Before the Burn…

August 27, 2013

I’m headed to Burning Man in about an hour.

It’s Monday. I decided I was going on Friday.

Making the decision, committing to this last-minute leap, was terrifying. Last time I went, in 2010, I planned for 9 months in advance.

On Friday, when I was wavering – do I stay or do I go? – a friend reminded me:

“Everyone describes Burning Man as transformational. Every year. So. That’s what you’re all about.”

And she is damn right. I am about transforming ourselves into OURSELVES, our true radiant joyful divine selves. Remembering. But even the reminders need to be reminded sometimes. Thank god for good friends.

So I made the decision, I committed, I took the leap, and everything has worked out so seamlessly and perfectly that I had to laugh. I can’t recount all of the brilliant synchronicities because any minute some new friends are coming to pick me up in an RV and we’re headed out to the Playa.

But while I was watching the sun set tonight, a Coyote ran by me, within about 15 feet. Whenever I see an animal nowadays, I immediately look up its Medicine, which in Native American teachings means its Message.

Coyote had some perfect messages for Burning Man:

“If you have [seen Coyote], you can be sure that some kind of medicine is on its way – and it may or may not be to your liking.
Whatever the medicine is, good or bad, you can be sure it will make you laugh, maybe
even painfully. You can also be sure that Coyote will teach you a lesson about yourself.

If we forget to be children and take life with laughter and ease, Coyote
appears to pester us until we let go of the inner pain that keeps us from knowing the joys
of life.
The cosmic joke is not just on ourselves but on everybody else.

When you destroy the illusion of who you are to others and be yourself, you will have restored your innocence.
Get ready for more of the laughs – lots more.
When was the last time you did something just because it was fun? 
Find it amusing and laugh. If you can’t laugh at yourself and your crazy antics, you have lost the game.

Coyote always comes calling when things get too serious.”

 
Text taken from this awesome site.

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The smokey pre-Burn/post-Burn skies above Reno, Nevada. By Maya Lila di Vento

 

 

New Paradigm

July 1, 2013

I feel like I’m living in a magical new reality. Which means that I AM living in a magical new reality.

I’ve been wanting to share all these stories and I’m not even sure where to start. Things have been happening so quickly, flowing so powerfully, that I can’t even seem to put the words together to describe what I’m going through.

“I’ve never been so alive…”

 

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Upon meeting one of my soul-friends in this lifetime, during our first 10-hour conversation, he said to me: “You are not alone.”

And these simple words filled my eyes with tears, and he realized that this was the message he was meant to give to me.

And now I’m suddenly recalling the bone-numbing loneliness of my youth, which began to dissolve when I began to meet soul-friends on my twenties… I suppose the loneliness was also partially covered by music, alcohol and sex too (oh and packing every waking moment of my life with work and play).

These last few years of cutting music(dance/house music), alcohol, sex and busy-ness out of my life has given me time to experience and begin to heal that loneliness on its deepest levels.

I see that I’m in the final run now as I observe my attachment to the men I encounter in my life as I begin to date again. Very, very, verrrrry interesting…….

I can feel the edges of an opening in my chest, like a black hole or a pit that opens downward to the earth that I’m going to have to go through to get to the other side, reemerging into wholeness.

w-HOLE-ness.

Alone => all one.

Today’s post was inspired by this photo on Facebook – see, Facebook CAN be good. 😉

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Aaaand I’m back!!!

Day 16 of my 30-day LightLiving simplifying-minimizing-decluttering challenge!

Lots of good stuff, clarity, new plans!


Today’s Five Releases:

1. Makeup brush

2. White Buddha tank

3. Green Ganesh tank

4. Basket I made

5. Vibrams with a hole in the soles

 

Keeps:

1. Red Buddha tank

2. Patagonia Geode necklace

(Going to focus more on the letting go as I’m planning to start traveling again – watch the video!)

Happy LightLiving!

Hiatus

May 4, 2013

I’m taking a Hiatus from vlogging for a few days. Why? Because:

I’ve run out of room.

I’m halfway through a 30-day decluttering/minimizing challenge and my hard drive is so full that I can no longer download the videos from my camera.

Oh, the irony!!!*

This is like the chubbly 'before' picture...

This is like the chubbly ‘before’ picture… still working my way towards minimalism!

So I’m in the process of transferring all my thousands of photos and videos to my terrabyte external drive…which is over halfway full.

I’ve been trying to manually transfer photos in batches the last few weeks, organizing them in the old labelled folder system (hey, I was on PCs from age 12 to 32 – 20 years!) and right this second iPhoto says I still have…11,656 photos and videos to go. *sigh*

With 11,656 photos to go (I think I started around 15,000) this manual thing is gonna take waaay too long.

So I’m gonna figure out how to do this the right, simple, easy way! And I’ll let you know (if you ALREADY know, you can leave me a message in the comments – help a sister out!). From a few seconds of checking with Guru Googleji it looks like I might just be able to drag-n-drop my iPhoto Library on to the eternal… but I want to have some on my computer too, and I don’t want to always have to have my eternal drive plugged in.

I was thinking about this topic earlier: I didn’t get the souped-up speakers or the extra hard drive because I allowed the men I was asking for advice to talk me out of it. “You don’t need that much storage!” “You can add memory!” “You can get some good speakers!” Wrong on #1, that’s really implausible on #2, and #3, As a nomad/aspiring minimalist I really don’t like to have to have things plugged into my computer – external hard drives OR speakers.

So, next time, I’m going big and getting my computer tricked out EXACTLY how I want it! Considering I spend hardly anything on shoes, clothing, makeup or hairstyling products, an extra grand or two once every few years on a swanky Macbook or Air seems totally reasonable to me.

I’m off to sort out the photo stuff so I can continue bringing you more videos and photos.

In the meantime check out the thunderheads we had today!

Mashed potato clouds!!!

 

*(modern Alanis definition of irony)

While I was living with a wise woman in Patagonia a year ago, I learned about Native American traditions and spirituality, and I learned about the meanings of animals. This wise woman had a deck of cards and book about Animal ‘Medicine’, as the Native American teachings refer to it.

I think that anything that we use to bring meaning to our lives can be helpful – it can be belief systems, astrology, religion, ‘signs’ from the Universe/god, synchronicity, even science (what we think of as modern “science” has really become more like Scientism – just another set of beliefs that makes us feel safe). Anyways, it’s all about the meaning you give to these beliefs, and if you use these ‘clues’ as part of your personal growth, development and expansion.

Twice in the past month while recording videos, I’ve been interrupted by Bumblebees.

Back on March 10, 2013, I was recording a video out in front of the Academy of Art, Creativity & Consciousness in Italy on a beautiful spring day. I was talking about life, about figuring out my calling/purpose, and about attempting to  authentically follow my dreams and intuition.

Cue Bumblebee. Later that day I googled the meaning of Bumblebees and meant to blog about it, but never did.

Then again on April 18th a Bumblebee gets right up in my/your/our faces/the camera lens. Ok, ok, I’ll write about Bumblebees!

The fascinating thing is how synchronistically aligned the symbolism of the Bumblebee is with what I’d been talking about in the video, what my focus has been the last month or two (focus itself, and creativity), and the lifestyle I’m living (COMMUNITY! If you don’t know, I’m living in a spiritual community in Italy…).

Key words:

Focus

Action

Creative endeavors (hello making videos!)

Community

Personal power

 

 

The following info was gathered from various websites:

Bumble Bees are focused, industrious, powerful, loud, and proud.

Bee is the ancient symbol of good fortune, joy and harmony. In the dream world, bee comes as a gift from Spirit. He buzzes about in order to awaken us into the moment. Alert and aware, we see that life is sweet and filled with brightness, color and light. Bee also teaches us to engage fully in our creative endeavors. The key is to focus with intention and to be single-minded in purpose.

The bee symbolizes community, brightness and personal power. Follow the bee to discover your new destination.

The ancient Druids saw the bee as symbolising the sun, the Goddess, celebration, and community.

ALL bees are productive, they stay focused on whatever they are doing and do not get sidetracked from their goal.

They hold the power of service. Their movement from one plant to plant represents the interconnectedness of all living things. It’s their drive to contribute to the common good of the community that is noteworthy.  The bumblebee is a messenger bringing the secrets of life and service.

If this is your power animal and your energy is scattered, the bumblebee can show you how to become focused again.

If you are stung, the message here is – WAKE UP! Follow the rhythm of your own heartbeat. Listen to your true self, your higher self. Heed your inner voice and wisdom.

Ask for bumble bee help when:

•          You need help communicating with other people.

•          You question if you are aligned with your goals in life.

•          You wish to heed your inner voice and wisdom.

Access bumble bee power by…

•          Extracting the sweetness of life.

•          Being productive while the sun shines

•          Pursuing your dream, no matter how great it seems.

The meaning of bees in dreams speak of:

•          industry,

•          action,

•          communication, and

•          our ability to consciously choose the results we want in our lives

When we dream of bees it may be an indication that we are ready to communicate our spiritual gifts, or perhaps we should more clearly recognize the treasures that reside within us.

 

Fascinating stuff. So I encourage you: look into those little clues that the Universe gives you. If certain animals pop up often in your life, or in your dreams, google their meaning and symbolism. These clues and synchronicities might be mirrors of what you’re seeking to learn.

 

P.S. Random Wiki fact: Bumblebee colonies are often placed in greenhouse tomato production, because the frequency of buzzing that a bumblebee exhibits effectively releases tomato pollen.

Is that not AMAZING??!? That a FREQUENCY can release pollen from a PLANT??????

Skip Day!

April 26, 2013

Today was a very long day, and I did not feel like picking my 5/3.

So I didn’t.

I did, however, still record a video for you!

I mentioned a few of these things in the video, but here’s a full recap of my day:

I started the day with some of my morning rituals round 6:30am, meditation at 7:30am, then breakfast with friends out in the sunshine; over to the Academy of Art, Creativity & Consciousness to clean and translate some marketing materials for our open house in the afternoon; more cleaning and organizing and chatting with friends. Then ate a giant lunch out in the sunshine with friends again. Washed some dishes, back to the Academy for some schmoozing and translating Italian/English, enjoyed a moving classical music rehearsal, a short hike with a friend, ate some INCREDIBLE homemade cheesecake for another friend’s birthday; talked with friends some more, met some new people, schmoozed some more til dinner time. Ate dinner with friends and watched the sun set. Helped wash dishes in the kitchen for an hour and a half (with some Russians and two monks who’d flown in from India, one originally from Las Vegas and the other from Uruguay), took a little moonlit stroll and listened to Radiolab, recorded the video above, Skyped with China, chatted with my friends/roommates, edited the video above, took a shower.

It’s now 1:30am Italy time, and I’m about to head over to the Temple of Light. I signed up for a shift to sit vigil for Swamiji, who left his body on April 21st. I’ll be meditating in the temple with him from 2am-4am. Should be a beautiful experience. The moon’s full tonight, and with springtime here the weather’s slowly been warming up.

My day was busy but full of friendship and laughter and stories and hugs and deep conversations about the meaningful things in life – relationships, truth, reality, death, love, joy, creation… So grateful, so appreciative of this wonderful community and the amazing life that I have.

Come visit!!! 😉

In today’s video I share my Five Releases and my Three Keeps, I share some gorgeous photos of Italy, and I also share some tears. I’m quite uncomfortable expressing fear or sadness and crying in front of other people; but as it’s my fears that got me crying this morning, I figured I might as well face one right away by posting a video about it!

Following your dreams is terrifying. And by following your dreams I mean follow your intuition, your heart path, and doing what you feel called to do, even if you don’t know why. I felt called to do this challenge and to make videos. This morning someone asked me what the point was – WHY was I doing this challenge? What is the point of making videos every day? What is my goal? Ie, How is this contributing to me figuring out my life and how to make a living??

And then all the fears came flooding out. I don’t know! I don’t know what I’m doing! I don’t know what’s going to happen! I don’t know how I’m going to pay bills! I don’t have answers. I’m just trying to do what I feel is truest for me, even if it makes no rational sense.

I have so many fears that I’m trying to work through. I’m trying not to just give up, to go back to the old secure and deadening life of regular paychecks and car insurance payments. Why is that such a huge question? Why do our entire lives focus around HOW WILL YOU MAKE MONEY? Money, a completely made-up thing… funny how something that’s just a belief can upset us so much.

When I was crying this morning (before the video), I sat there breathing through the fear/pain/sadness, breathing deep and strong, almost hyperventilating, my face tingling after a few minutes. I could feel the energy moving through me, my head hurting, my neck tense. I kept gulping air. And then it began to dissolve. It came back to me how I’d been taught as a child that it was wrong and shameful to cry. Growing up I’d always gone to my room alone, put some music on my headphones, and muffled my sobs into my teddy bear. I don’t think I  cried in front of any of my friends until I was into my twenties.

In the last week, a few odd things in my body have come up: My knuckle’s been hurting in an arthritis-y way for a little over a week. Three or four days ago I stubbed my pinkie toe on a rock so hard that it turned purple. I won’t subject you to a photo of my toe but let’s say that it swelled up and resembles a cherry. Or a purple grape.

Yesterday, I totally ate it while climbing down a hill and skinned my knees. I’m not usually klutzy. I’ve also been binging on chocolate and bread.

I realized that all of these things were signals for the underlying emotions bubbling below – subconscious attempts at distraction, sabotage, or getting my attention.

I checked my book “Heal Your Body” by Louis Hay to find out the meanings:

 

PROBLEM: Joints (Knuckle)

PROBABLE CAUSE: Represent changes in direction in life and the ease of these movements.

NEW THOUGHT PATTERN: I easily flow with change. My life is Divinely guided, and I am always going in the best direction.

 

PROBLEM: Toes

PROBABLE CAUSE: Represent the minor details of the future.

NEW THOUGHT PATTERN: All details take care of themselves.

 

PROBLEM: Knee

PROBABLE CAUSE: Represents pride and ego.

NEW THOUGHT PATTERN: I am flexible and flowing.

 

 

Well, there you go. 

So why share all this? Well, one, because it scares me, and I’m practicing doing things that scare me.  And two, if you’ve ever felt afraid or alone or confused, maybe this will help remind you that you’re not alone. There is no feeling or emotion that you’ll ever have that no one else has ever felt. We’re all in this crazy life game together, here to play being sad and fearful. It’s part and parcel with the pleasure and joy of being human.

One thing I will say about all this – I’m learning how to edit videos. I’m learning how to let go of more crap. I’m learning how to ‘ship’ stuff I create – blogs and videos – every single day. I’m learning to create and share  while caring less and less what others think of me.

And most importantly, I’m letting go. Of crap I don’t need, and also of some of my fear.

Thanks for joining me on this journey!

 

Today’s Release List:

1. Chemically shampoo

2. Sesame oil

3. Box

4. Book: Raja Yoga

5. Book: The Yeast Syndrome

 

Today’s Keep List:

1. Turquoise & gold earrings

2. Blue crystal earrings from the Dalai Lama in Milan, 2012

3. Buddha earrings from Fern’s Garden, Belmont Shore/Long Beach (the sell Jacob’s Wind chimes, which are the BEST wind chimes EVER).

Photo by me! Spring in Bloom, yesterday, Italy, 2013

Photo by me! Spring in Bloom, yesterday, Italy, 2013

I’ve been a nomad for almost two years now and I still feel like I’ve got too much stuff.

It’s weighing me down and I’m ready to shift. Time to take clutter-clearing to the next level!

I’ve been stalking minimalist bloggers online for years – there’s the ‘100 Things‘ Challenge, where you try to get the items you own down to 100; there’s minimalist fashion, where you choose 33 clothing items to wear for 3 months.

But I’m gonna do it my own way.


I will also be recording a video every day to share the process with you, delving into the psychological reasons for clutter and holding on. (And you get to see all my junk!)

The video part will be especially challenged as I’ve never really vlogged, but China Mae Brooks is one of my vloggy inspirations and lately I’ve been feeling compelled to start vlogging. (Plus I’m living in Italy and it’s springtime and you should really enjoy it with me).

So that’s that.

I want to be lighter, freer, clearer.

Simplify.

Clarify.

Focus.

Freedom.

Trust.

Love lets go when fear wants to hold on.

I Choose to Let Go.