My fiercest hope for humanity lies in YOU!


That’s my fiercest hope – is that we come back to the natural intelligence that flows through us, instead of constantly negating it. It’s surrendering to the impulse that is the driving force of life. That’s the impulse of creation coming through you!

What could be more natural?
What else could bring fulfillment?

Click on the image for the full podcast episode!

Dear one,

I had a colorful conversation on my soulful colleague Andy Cahill’s podcast, the Wonder Dome. He asked me what my fiercest hope for humanity is- a beautiful question he poses to each of his guests.

I realized my fiercest hope for humanity lives in you. It breathes in the way you and I show up in the world, and in these catalytic times, our way of being is more important than ever.

In this intimate conversation we talked about being human and whole, and the juicy possibility that emerges when we come together as one- in service of a world that consciously and lovingly includes and transcends all its parts.

If you’ve been in one of my group courses you know this place of possibility, and if you haven’t, I hope you’ll join me. The world is begging us to show up fully for ourselves and eachother.

You can meet me in all my colors if you listen in! 

with hope and love,
Ishita

SHOW NOTES:

Come to Center
Call to Coherence Intensive
Un Becoming Podcast
Sanskrit
Bhagavad Gita
Francis Briers
Stoicism
Dharma

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The call of fire in our hearts

Fire.
Our world is on fire. And so is my heart.

Art by George Redhawk

Fire. 
Our world is on fire. And so is my heart.

And I know that fire is the element of transformation- the cycle of initiation, purification, becoming…this is a becoming that necessitates the burning away of all that is false- inside and around us.

Between a peaking global pandemic, uprisings and protests for basic human rights and dignity and political mayhem, the past fortnight has truly tested us all!

I hope you are simultaneously safe and stirred to the core in the very best of ways because a new reality is pouring into this planet rapidly and calling us to take our place in it in a whole new way. Somedays it has felt to me like drinking right from a firehose!

They say hindsight is 2020, and 2020 is here. What you want to see when you look back at today, is begging be seeded now. The call to alignment has never been louder!

This stirring is not punitive, but rather an invitation into embodied wholeness. 

If you’ve been denying your truth, hiding in the shadows with a dream in your heart, stifling your voice, waiting for someday to live your purpose, I want you to ask yourself: what are you waiting for? If not now, when? If not you, who?

I know the path is uncertain and scary- I’ve walked through this fire myself before, leaving familiarity, safety and comfort to heed an inner calling. So I also know, that every time we step in through the fire, committed to living nothing less than the life we came here to live, when we dare to welcome truth over comfort, courage over fear, we are supported in unimaginable ways that bring us into a state of grace. 

Our planet needs your unique medicine in ways only YOU can bring! In ways that make you come alive!

Are you willing to let the false burn away and embody your truth? In your very ways of being and doing?  

The world just opened a direct path to your innermost calling. Come claim your rightful place in it. Align! 

In this radical time, feeling is not just healing, it is also the doorway to inspired, aligned action. Remember, there is no transformation without embrace- within and between us. 

To help you digest, reset, find purpose and resource in this fiery time, I am offering mini restorative sessions at no charge to you.

If you haven’t worked with me privately, you may be amazed at how impactful and powerful these re-sets can be. 15 minutes of attuned presence can transform lifetimes of pain.

This work is for you if you want to live a fulfilling, vibrant and authentic life. 

If your heart is also on fire, join me. Whether you want to offer the world your unique medicine, express your authentic voice or need support to heal and release emotional, relational and spiritual roadblocks, our work together will help you realize your deepest longings. 

All you need to begin is curiosity. Let’s talk.

Please take great care of your hearts and share this invitation with someone you know who could use it. 

I’m here. I’m listening. I’m standing with and for your brilliance, and the power of the human collective to rise in love together. 

Only love,
Ishita

Where fear and yearning meet.

All fear comes from a forgetting of who we are- when we forget life isn’t happening to me, I’m creating it. When we forget I’m not a tiny powerless thing in the universe, the whole universe is in me! When we forget the darkness is here simply to help us remember, we get scared.

And when we remember life is here to make us conscious, not happy- we can again embrace the arising with the acceptance it needs. We can give our fearful inner friend the hug it needs- because what it needs, is to be seen and held.

What fears are holding you hostage from living your fullest expression in the world? What’s the risk you cannot afford not to take?

I just got off the phone with a dear friend facing the crisis of having outgrown her own cocoon. She knows it’s time to step into her dreams, and she’s afraid of facing the unknown and the potential disappointment of asking life for what she wants and not getting it.

She isn’t alone. Sound familiar?

As the spring comes into bloom, it brings new yearnings in our hearts- and each yearning must meet the fear that keeps it chained before it can be realized. This is natural- ever impulse to expand is met with its polarity, until we can integrate the two. That’s the beginning of wholness.

Yes- there is a space for fear and yearning to meet, to know eachother, and ultimately transform into ease and fluidity.

When I started Come to Center I had to sit with similar fears. And the truth is, as we meet our fears, they morph into newer ones. If you’re waiting to feel fearless before you take the next step in life, I want to remind you that every fear is a gift. It is an invitation into the next step of your evolution.

It’s the next dragon on your hero(ine)’s journey.

In fact, it’s something I help people through all the time now. Because I know it isn’t about not feeling afraid, it’s about learning to hold our fearful inner child with love and compassion, while growing it up. As Liz Gilbert says, fear gets to come on the ride, but it doesn’t get to drive the car.

All fear comes from a forgetting of who we are- when we forget life isn’t happening to me, I’m creating it. When we forget I’m not a tiny powerless thing in the universe, the whole universe is in me! When we forget the darkness is here simply to help us remember, we feel afraid.

And when we remember life is here to make us conscious, not happy- we can again embrace the arising with the acceptance it needs. We can give our fearful inner friend the hug it needs- because what it needs, is to be seen and held.

How can we turn fear into alertness? How can we meet it with open hearts when it’s busy shutting our heart down?

Consider this:

In our last session, I asked a high performing client who was feeling stuck with fear of a pending decision and who is basically a master at whatever she tries, to identify something “She sucks at” and go try learning it.

After fishing for a while, she decided she definitely couldn’t write songs and was shy of her singing voice. So naturally, I made that her experiment for the fortnight. 

Today, she came back for our next session, bubbling with excitement about “all the things I am just terrible at! Which are SO fun to try! I forgot how much fun learning is! I didn’t just try a song, I tried everything! I even tried juggling- and I suck at juggling but people were cheering for me saying how cool it was to see me approach it so fearlessly- and to see me improve as I went through the process.” 

And then, she sang the song she’d written.

By the time she was done singing it, we both had tears rolling down our faces. She had written the song about the fires she was facing in her own life and meeting the heartbreak and beauty of all that is unfolding. It was real. It touched my heart. It was her first song.

And she said, it’s been changing even as she sings it…isn’t that a metaphor for life? 

When we stop taking everything so seriously, when we stop avoiding, and rather embrace our fears, stare our imperfection in the face with love, it only brings us deeper wisdom, and love, and joy and connection. 

The pending decision was still daunting, but the fear could no longer debilitate her, because she’s experienced the beauty of fear paving the way for fluidity, all it takes is the willingness to meet it.

It is a privilege to do this work, with people willing to go into these places with me!

So, what’s the risk you can’t not afford to take?

What’s the fear stopping you from living your fullest expression?

How would it be to transform that fear into fluidity?

What could open up in that reality?

If you’d like to dig deeper and are curious about 1:1 work, let’s talk. All you need to get started is curiosity!

What drives me, what drives you?

Ever wonder what it is that drives you? What you yearn to bring forth?

It turns out, purpose is always about something bigger than ourselves that we are asked to stretch into.

What is your yes to in life? That’s the elemental question of purpose.

I get asked this often, and I’ve been thinking a lot about what drove me to end a decade long career as an architect and start Come to Center — a holistic transformational consultancy, that constantly has me walking the edge of discomfort, asking me to face my demons every step of the way.

And the answer is L O V E!
Big love.

A love of life itself, a love of something bigger than me, love of those in search of light, of truth, of something bigger than themselves.

So often in our world we go looking for fulfillment outside of us- marketing is great at perpetuating a paradigm of lack- get the new outfit, the perfect job, the perfect partner and then you’ll be happy! And we believe them, until we actually ‘get it all.’

We can have the perfect job, the perfect house, a helluva lot of money and still feel empty, disconnected and meaningless. We can have three PhDs and a lineup of accolades and still know nothing about our own nature- who we are, why we came to be, how to live a joyful life!

We can go through a whole lifetime in unconsciousness, driven by compulsive consumption- without ever honoring our deepest yearning, without ever knowing the exquisite privilege it is to be alive!

Seven years ago I saw through the illusion I’d been living in a way I could no longer deny. I had always suspected there was more to reality than met the eye.

And this seeing shattered everything I thought I was, I wasn’t, everything I thought I knew and my whole worldview itself.

It gave me absolute response ability. It silenced the yearning in all my questions. It plunged me into a bottomless hole that grew so big, it swallowed everything up and left a Wholeness that has never since left me, even in the darkest of times, even as I’m still falling through the hole! It’s the wildest, most fun ride I’ve ever been on!

So fun that it had to be shared- you know, like when you find the most incredible secret, so simple and profound, you want to TELL EVERYONE? Like that! So I listened to my heart and let my spirit drive.

I now live and share a simpler, more authentic and fulfilling way of life. I know what I am, I know why I’m here:

I’m here to know myself ever more deeply in relationship- with life, with all of creation, with you.

To be unapologetically me.

To heal inner division.

And I’m here to embody and teach a new way of being- one that lets us love ourselves fully and deeply.

To provide an alternative to existing in stress and turmoil.

To empower conscious evolution.

To bridge the wisdom of the East with the gifts of the West.

And holy shit, is it scary!

It turns out, purpose is always about something bigger than ourselves that we are asked to stretch into.

You will be tested along your hero’s journey. Every day I face some flavor of my shadow- my shyness, my reticence to really be vulnerable, shame in asking for my needs, to allow myself to be seen in my power, to let you know I know what I’m talking about and a hundred other defense strategies I’ve perfected over lifetimes…

But beneath all of that, there’s the love. It permeates everything. It shines from behind the fear and guides me through and to the light. There is much to learn and be and do and share!

So, what are you driven by in your life?

What is your yes to? Can you let your deepest love be your guide?

Come to Center is an invitation to join me on the ride. To turn suffering into growth. To return home to yourself. To live from the center of your being- to align with your truth, your beauty and your power- and bring it through in how you meet life, in this moment. And this one. And this one…

Come with me. Collective transformation starts with us!

Lead, learn, thrive!

Re-wire Your Brain to Master Your Game

Life in 2017 moves faster than we can keep up. Overstimulated, hyperconnected and always on the go, we seldom pause to self-center. Competing priorities vie for our scattered attention, and in the face of increasing workloads and pressures we navigate life on autopilot.

Stress or burnout inevitably follow, hijacking decision-making and communication, thereby straining relationships and inhibiting access to flow- the very place where creativity, innovation and joy thrive! 

Overwhelmed, we start to question if it’s all worth our life energy. You may know this cycle. Through my time in the high stress design industry, I sure did.

So, how can we lead, work and thrive in the Attention Economy without sacrificing our sanity or well-being?

The key lies in our ability to align intention and attention- our skill at being present, here and now. Best practices in business and spirituality intersect at meditation, or in simpler terms, attention training. Efficacy lies in the mastering how our inner space meets the world.

Mindfulness and Meditation train our attention on which all else depends. Cultivating focus and self-centering develops flow. Presence, Self Regulation and Emotional Intelligence are vital to harness technical and leadership skills in the fast paced digital age.

Enhancing our work, relationships and wellbeing depends on enhancing our inner space. Neuroscientists and global business leaders know this too well.

Presence, Self Regulation and Emotional Intelligence are vital to harness technical and leadership skills.

Rewire your brain to master your game. It’s time to come to center.

the ease of being!

erik-on-the-water-copy
the ease of being

no action 

           rooted
 in      lack

could ever

bring

forth fulfillment for fulfilment

is

here    now     whole ness
               !          (the nature)


of being 

               free and full and delight full !

action
            may
                     (or may not)
arise and 

you 

will know from the 

very 

ease of being

 

in prose:

No action rooted in lack could ever bring forth fulfillment.

Fulfillment is here and now. Wholeness is the nature of being- free, full and delightful! Action may or may not arise- you will know, from the very ease of being.

and more:

To examine inner grasping with curiosity and amusement, rooting into being, is to invite its own dissolution.

Photo above
My husband floating on backwaters in rural Thailand, March 2016 (from STUDIO-ish)

Open Meditation

What is Open Meditation? Meditation isn’t an act. It’s a state of being that occurs within you. Just as naturally as breathing…effortless, always perfect.

Even though meditation is a way of being for me, I’ve been reluctant to teach it. I want so deeply to share it with everyone, and I know that ultimately meditation cannot be taught, it must be discovered.

Though meditation was always a huge part of my life, I had never really been meditating! Meditation had been happening to me. 

Meditation isn’t a thing you do. It’s being vulnerable with life. Close your eyes and feel life. Every moment is an end in itself.

What I now call Open Meditation has been happening to me since memory- when I played on the banks of the Alaknanda which flowed behind our house and lost myself in the reflections in its waters. It happened to me on my long walks to nursery school, as I crossed the stream, as I smelled the raw mountain mist meeting the morning Sun, or the Koels singing in the forests…it happened to me when I found a leaf on my way to high school, and placed it on my desk just so, mesmerized by its beauty. Needless to say, confused peers thought I was weird- and weird I was, joyfully!

It happened to me as I walked from all-nighters in design studio to long days at work…tired but awake. Alive, relishing the beauty of the day…tearing up at how beautiful the very moment was. I remember when I would lie watching storms moving through the sky, birds dancing in murmurations in the clouds, meandering through precious breaks between the intensity of design school with delight into pure conscious experience of being-

“So much beauty, so much joy…!” the words kept resounding within.

And it happened to me when I finally separated knowing and understanding, making space for what I knew in my bones to surface. Always curious, my investigations of the nature of my own experience intensified and seeped into waking, sleeping and even dreaming! Until, stillness within became more intense than any movement, and I found myself closing my eyes and sitting. A little bit, everyday, any chance I got.

I’d avoided formal meditation for ever. I didn’t think I was ready, but unbeknownst to me, it was already happening through me. I didn’t plan on it, but there it was…

Never an early riser, I’d wake up minutes before I had to be at work, get fully dressed and for reasons I couldn’t describe, find myself sitting quietly for the last few minutes before I had to run out the door. Eyes closed, the same stream flowed through me, just more intensely now-

“So much beauty, so much joy…!”

For a long long time, everyday, I would sit in overwhelming gratitude, as these words moved through my mind, and tears flowed through my body. I found a whole new world within…energy flowed in me, and not randomly! Light and shadow coalesced into pulsating patterns, depths I didn’t know I had, revealed themselves quietly.

In total surrender, I watched my self dissolve.

I let it.

Being with what is, that’s all. I didn’t apply any technique or method I had learnt. In fact, I wasn’t ready to learn from anyone just yet. I knew I had to, had to, go within.

That’s all “I did.” And in retrospect, this subtle difference between trying to meditate and simply being with my meditativeness, was key.

No agenda, no expectations. No attempt to awaken, no desire for being a better person, no trying to get rid of my thoughts, no desire for better focus or sleep or creativity. Nothing.

no thing

Just, being with what is- consciously, curiously and unconditionally. That’s Open Meditation- open to whatever may be. Radical acceptance, absolute surrender.

When people ask me what kind of meditation I teach I say, I don’t really teach any particular method, but that I guide you in becoming meditative within yourself. That’s all. Along the way, we may invoke an in-the-mind or on-the-mind method, delve into the body or play in awareness…

but the underlying theme is always openness- being with what is, with no requests for it to be any different.

Life. Joy. Transcendence. Evolution…

“Success is easy. It’s going to be fun. It’s going to be given to you. It’s all around you.”

Excerpted from a Jenny Wade interview with Rich Murray. His words resound:

“If you are reading this, in this very moment success is certain.  Success is easy. It’s going to be fun.  It’s going to be given to you.  It’s all around you. Everything you do that’s fun, that you really feel like doing, especially if it’s new, if it puts you in contact with people that feels precious and exciting and playful joyful and there’s a lot of uniqueness and there’s not a lot of rules and there’s a lot of things to choose from and your field of choice is expanding, then you’re being liberated from what you’re used to, you’re being freed from what you’re used to — go for it.

Go for it.  You deserve it.  You absolutely deserve it.  You deserve to have it fast and easy, and you in turn will make it faster and easier for me and the others. No sooner than you learn something, you are teaching it the next minute.  It’s fast. It’s chain-reacting, and it saves the entire world dream.  Everything that is a mistake and is painful is innocent confusion.  There’s no evil.  You are not evil. You are not bad.  And any time you become aware of your limits, that means you are already leaving them behind.  Everything that you don’t like about yourself and other people is already being outgrown, whether you’re aware of it in yourself or in another, the ostensible problem is already the doorway into a rapid avenue of progress.  It’s a revolving door and you spin through it effortlessly into the next stage beyond it.  The body level, emotion level, mind level, spiritual level, technology level all become fluid, interactive, equivalent, merged in brand new ways.  Laughter is the way.  Wrong way is way.  Failure and mistakes are the way for sure.  And even ordinary success can be left behind, no matter how sophisticated and busy it may be.  Just because you’ve always been such and such and done such and such and are really good at such and such doesn’t mean that you can’t grow within it and beyond it both in most amazing ways.  And every mistake is discovered to be a source of tremendous wisdom and inspiration.

Death is not a serious problem, and it is never punishment.  It’s just another opportunity, just like everything else, like every morning when you wake up.  I am Richard Murray.  Hear me.  And hear yourself.  Speak with joy, exuberance, authority, speaking freshly, making it up as you go on.  Be certain of things and be uncertain about what you’re certain about.”

Say yes to YOUR life!

You need not betray yourself to be successful in life. In fact, a successful life can only manifest when you live authentically, from your Truth.

A little encouragement for listening to that inner knowingness….

I know sooo many people who are “in transition” right now. This is most commonly manifested as switching careers in our generation, but if you look more deeply at the unrest that drives it, the transition permeates all aspects of the being…mental, emotional and even spiritual…because all aspects are of the one.

Sometimes it’s hard to know which way to go. Old beliefs, fears, structures don’t serve, but the new, almost become, luring and inviting, can seem scary.

In these pregnant moments of self growth, be bold my friends! Be Courageous! Use these words, know the worth of living a life ALIGNED!

A collection of wisdom by Winslow Strong-

“If you bring forth what is within you it will save you. If you do not, it will destroy you.”

Thomas Merton

“And what, precisely, is destroyed? Energy is destroyed first. Those shining eyes. And then faith. And then hope. And then life itself. The increasing deadening of aliveness that Brian experienced as he went into the seminary is the very opposite of Jane Goodall’s experience. When a life is founded on self-betrayal, the habit of self-betrayal proliferates until we are at peril of not remembering who we are at all. There is a slow deadening of spirit as we try to pick up the burdens of adulthood without the energy of The Gift. Our work can be motivated by obligation, by hunger for the external rewards of accomplishment, or by strongly reinforced ideas about who we should be in this lifetime. But none of these motivations has the authentic energy required for mastery of a profession. So, all of these motivations lead slowly to a downward spiral that tends to crash, as it did with Brian, at midlife. Without the balm of real fulfillment there is a growing emptiness inside. Finally, it requires a heroic effort to simply go on with life in the face of this emptiness. The light in the eyes goes out.”

Stephen Cope