Turning arrows into roses

I want to tell you a story that annihilated me into itself when I heard it. Maybe it will annihilate you too, and point you back to essence…

A story that almost could be from the Mahabharata, that almost could have happened. But it didn’t.
And not the way I am going to tell it. 
And none of this will matter if you feel where it points…

When Arjuna the great Indian warrior found himself on the battlefield of Kurukshetra, across from an army led by the very teachers who had trained him to become the finest archer in the land, full with brothers and uncles- the family he grew up with, he couldn’t lift his bow to fire the first arrow across the enemy lines.

He looked at their faces and his heart broke. 
He knew his Dharma, he knew it had to be such- that he must engage this battle, for it was Divine will, and yet, as he gazed across the battlefield, he couldn’t fire at the enemy.

He just stood there, seeing them with this heart.

And when the very people he couldn’t shoot at, began firing arrows at him, something unusual happened: as the arrows they shot touched Arjuna, they began to transform into petals of Rose and fell at his feet. 

You see, he had become love
Big love.


The enormity of his love was such that it dissolved everything that touched him into itself- back into the essence of the Everything- the core vibration of love.

And the harshness of the arrows, the hate, the anger, the violence that came at him, transmuted into Roses- the fragrant softness of love. 

I feel at the core, this is life’s invitation to us all- to not just know love as a verb, but to become it…and in that becoming, make everything we meet part of the Love we are…

This is no small order. And yet, there are beings who join us here on Earth and embody this capacity.

This morning at 00:00, 1.22.22, in the temple he was initiated in as a young boy, Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh left his body. And as I sat feeling his essence in meditation, this story came up and again made me cry. Because Arjuna’s story also describes him.

Maybe you’ve met his teachings? Maybe this note will inspire you to…I hope it does.

I’ve always experienced Thich Nhat Hanh as the Boddhisattva of peace. I haven’t read any of his books, nor attended any of his retreats. Nor really followed his teachings closely.

But I have heard his voice name the Truth in us all.
I have seen his brush, make spirit into form.
I have felt the power and the radiance of his presence, melt me with love, into itself. 

It’s a gift to be annihilated, over and over again in meeting a presence like his. The best way to honor him, of course, is to live aligned with the Truth in you.

You can read his parting words below, gently melting all the pointy arrows in me, into the tenderness of petals…

in celebration, in honor of a Life lived fully, his, yours and mine- 

with big love,
Ishita
 

Awakening is…

This morning I want to put into words, what I often refuse to when asked about- what is awakening?

I say, whatever I say will be untrue. So go find out- what is it for you!

but today, the light is just right through the curtains, the words feel so seductive on my tongue, I want to give them shape and space…

La Refuge- home in my soul’s heart.

Awakening is…

being the beingness of being dancing in becoming
wholeness-emptiness-aliveness-

hereness-allness-nothingness

Becoming the eyes and hands of God.
Pure receptivity
.
Re-member-ing.
Coming home to.


Even as the dream appears, it dissolves into Truth
no stickiness here-
seeing becomes seeing

hearing becomes hearing
what is is what is

being everything and nothing and this thing!
Everywhere and No where and Here. Now.

Simultaneously, timelessly.
Through this physical form, in it, not of it.
This magnificent, sacred vessel. In love of it!

It is transcendence, yes-

transcendence that includes All That Is.

The universal and the particular become the same.
Fully Human. Fully Divine.

Thus I stand.
and I am asked:

Ishi how are you being,
right now?

Grandmother Imaginings

“So listen, I am imagining.

I imagine that I awaken here on Sacred Mother Earth and marvel that I am alive and part of Creation 

I imagine that Creation has given me a body that I  respect and love.

I imagine that I will learn with my physical existence as long as I inhabit my body….  

I imagine that women and men are equal.

I imagine that Life is challenge and giving-otherwise I would not be experiencing the presence of  Life and Her Balance

I imagine that sex is natural (sacred) -and beautiful.

I imagine that all humans are born to Life to Learn and to Grow.

I imagine that I can live my Life and question my own experience and my Existence.

I imagine that I can help change the conditions of my world and my personal circumstances.

I imagine that I can listen to creation directly and that I need no interpreter.

I imagine that I can be my Self even in those times when I am pained by others.

I imagine that I am my own Authority and my own Teacher

I imagine that all information must be questioned by me.

I imagine that I can be the kind Teacher to myself.

I imagine that I am a Self-Responsible human who will teach others to care for our Sacred Mother Earth (with Beauty).”  

–  Estcheemah

Getting naked, is where it’s at!

So you’re weaving the basket with one hand and the Universe weaves the other. It’s never been about perfection, it was just about authenticity. 

In my early Come to Center days, as I was still learning to own, share and make transaction for my gifts, I spoke with a Sufi about desire, nakedness and vulnerability…about showing up in partnership with Life. Before we parted, he asked me to let myself be seen and go make a video, which I will share with you in my next post. 

Our conversation was a gift to my soul. I share an excerpt of it with your heart now as a gift and an invitation.

“This is important,” he said. “Your desire is really intelligence.

There’s the hungry soul state, the free state and the naked state. The hungry soul way of getting what you want, is desperate- stealing the pie. You see the glass is always half empty, and the universe agrees. In the free state you say, I’m ok here, I don’t need any pie, and the universe agrees. You’re numb, and one day you’re walking dead.” 

“You’ve been a renunciate and a sacrificial humanitarian, here and before. You say you don’t need anything, so no one can give it to you. But the thing is, it takes great humility to pay your bills, to ask for money, to say this is how I make my living- to ask for what you need.” And he held my hand as I started to cry. 

“Getting naked is where it’s at, you see…full nakedness!

Every day, you need something! And (you ask, and) the universe then starts filling you up…it’s really about being defenseless. Try to continue to ask for what you want, and give people a chance to love you for who you are, you see…letting them see you in your need, asking for what you want- vulnerability- one of the most important human traits…how Gandhi defeated an empire…that’s the nature of vulnerability… if you tell me how you’re feeling, I get to experience the power and beauty of your thought and emotion. 

So you’re weaving the basket with one hand and the Universe weaves the other. It’s never been about perfection, it was just about authenticity. 

If you make yourself real, God will make you real. If you make God real, God will make you real.”

I did. I still am. Bit by bit. I learned to show up, sometimes trembling, and stand in humility- soft belly, feet planted, heart racing, palms open. I learned to muster up the courage to discover and then ask for what want, to say no, to be seen in my power and my vulnerability- which it turns out, are the same thing.

This making yourself and God real, isn’t easy! But it is what we have come here to do in our unique ways. This weaving the basket with the universe isn’t an abstraction- it is lived in every aspect of how we are!

And, so much friction eases when turn towards our Sorcerer’s task, knowing who we are, how life works and claim our right place in the Everything. That’s what this path is about, as is Murmurations.

His invitation to me then, is my invitation to you now!

Come weave your basket in partnership with the Universe. 
Let yourself be seen, be known…by yourself and those around you.
Cultivate your inner teacher, healer and sage, that they may fuel how you touch the whole world.

MURMURATIONS opens in two weeks!

This 6 month immersive alongside masterful guides is a place to awaken, heal, embody and align with purpose with a community supporting you!

And I mean a real community (not just a group of people), where we share our truths, our hearts, our highs and lows of life honestly in shared purpose- to heal and embody our deepest intentions, serving something bigger than ourselves. 

A combination of somatics, energetics, relational dynamics, emotional fluidity and awareness based practices coalesce to help people complete the cycles they are in and move into the next level of healing.

You can expect powerful transformation in a relatively short amount of time, in ways that are aligned and attuned to your unique needs.

As of now there are 4 spots open. A mature group is forming, so we can go deeper faster- they’re ready to dive not just into personal healing, but also integrating the relational and spiritual facets of being, while aligning their doing in the world from their new baseline consciousness. 

If our call resonates in you, go check out  the website, see what people are sharing about their own journeys and set up a time for us to connect. We may just be the mutual medicine we need.

just weaving my basket here,
<3 :D
Ishita

An insider’s experience of Murmurations!

Big Love meets Big Love!

Baby just let it fly! Louvre, Paris. Circa 2007- photo by Ishita Sharma
Baby, just let it fly! Photo by Ishita Sharma. Louvre, Paris. Circa 2007.

Dear one,

In my morning session today a beautiful client and I laughed for a good 10 minutes as she saw how she was playing the game of life, trying so hard to hide the Big Big Love she actually is!

Who did she think she’s fooling? I asked.
And she pointed to herself. We laughed some more.

As she saw herself as this Ocean of Love, there was nothing left outside of it. 

She, me, we, her stories, ideas, beliefs, emotions – all melted into boundless, all encompassing Big Love. And there was nothing left but tears of joy, the sweet mourning of that forgetting, that hiding…

We convince ourselves no one sees the love that we are, but it can’t be hidden. Mostly, we’re hiding it from ourselves.

What if for this one moment, as you read my words, you let this ocean of love that has been wanting to pour through you out into the Everything actually pour out?   

You showed up in the world one ball of innocence- loving everything you met. As a child you knew this- you were here to love and be loved. It was simple. It was easy to offer your heart and receive love into it. 

So now again, come back to the simplicity of that knowing.

Let yourself BE love. 

Maybe for just this moment. Maybe for another minute…maybe for this whole day, maybe just this weekend or this year…this lifetime!

Especially when it feels vulnerable – when you are afraid you’ll lose connection for showing up as it- like writing this email for me, it will feel so essential and so vulnerable…

Come!
Let it melt you.
Over and over. 

Big Love meets Big Love.

You, Big Love, go to the grocery store and feel the Big Love bagging your groceries for you. You walk to the post office and meet Big Love in the line and there it is again, mailing your letters. You come home and there it is again- Big Love pouring out, disguised as your children, your partner, your parents, your friend…what else was ever there? 

All around you. It’s hard not to feel it!

It can be that simple.

To let it be that simple is the most courageous choice we can make- turning towards what you already are- so much love it’ll break your heart and fill it. Over and over again.

That’s the invitation of Murmurations being, having and doing as and from Big Big Love. If it calls, let’s talk.

What else could be more essential, more important, more joyful?

a wink, a smile, and Big Big Love!
Ishita

M U R M U R A T I O N S 
a unique transformational community

Heal, awaken, embody, and align with your deepest purpose- together.

We start Oct 5.

Kali, Kali, Maha Kali!

Surrender isn’t easy.

It is humbling- it cracks us open exactly where the light needs to get in. 
It is the last doorway to homecoming, fulfillment.

Especially when we find ourselves in a bardo, as the Tibetans call it- that voidness between what was and what is yet to come.

Here we meet the tug of our cumulated past, our ideas, fears, our attachments, our compulsions. We continue striving for the impossible, perpetuating our own suffering, and that of others. We yield to fear and indulge our pain. We give ourselves up for an imagined reward, and it hurts.

Faced with the real threat of dissolution, and yes, even renewal, it is tempting to collapse, strive, fight, avoid, indulge- employ familiar safety strategies to innocently re-create the false safety that eventually must and will crumble. 

Yesterday’s new moon was a soft punctuation on the completion of a death process for me. After a deep swim in the void, mourning the death of ideas and ideals, humbled and changed, I can feel newness coming alive within me, exacting re-commitment, expanding response ability. 

Renewed, I am eager to welcome a new group of spiritual warriors, awakening and healing through their own cycles of death and renewal, in service of All That Is. 

But only after a full blown teenage rebellion, did I find it- a deeper commitment to the Divine.

Saying yes again to putting both feet into the river of Life. Because, as my friend Joann said, “you can’t find your yes until you allow your no.”  And as Maya Luna says in Becoming Kali (the call of this moment) below, “our pain is the portal to our power.” 

Surrender.

Crying on my knees, I bowed down, offering all the pieces of the Pie of my Life to God – literally, and metaphorically. I am here to do the needful- what is asked of me, and I bring my own wants to the negotiating table. 

Now again, there is peace. And an amused curiosity. I am watching the subtle expansion afoot, I am listening for where and how the pieces fall. 

And I suspect I’m not alone in emerging from a death cycle…creation, existence, dissolution and rebirth are not just markers of life cycles, they accompany us through phases of our evolution, all while still alive. It’s happening now in and around us. So when you examine your life-

What wants to end? What is beginning?

What do you know needs to go, that you don’t want to let go of? 

Can you be with what remains? 
Can you listen to the emergent?

Join us for the FREE September Community Call – RELEASE + REBIRTH on September 20th, 7pm EST to examine these questions together, as we ready to usher in the shifts calling us.
 
REGISTER FOR RELEASE + REBIRTH
As the Equinox tilts us into the Fall, you will be right on time to join the new cohort of MURMURATIONS  a transformational community walking towards truth, love and power, together. The group opens Sept 21, our first gathering will be on Oct 5.

In this unique and rejuvenating process we mine group intelligence, celebrating our light and integrating our shadows to end what needs to end, and welcome in what wants to be made through each and all of us, in a flock of spiritual warriors with shared values. 

There are spaces and scholarships open- all you need to apply is resonance and a commitment to your own transformation.

If you want to know power, and use it aligned with Life itself, explore my invitation, and follow the call.

Self to Self, Power to Power,
Ishita


BECOMING KALI
by Maya Luna


You want to know power?
Stop spitting out your food and eat.
Behold the banquet of density.
Eat the chaos. Be infused by the force that birthed this world into existence
Eat your struggle. Let it brand you with the unbound freedom of fire.
Eat your exhaustion. Let it sand down the jagged edges of your striving.
Eat your losses. Let them open you into the clarity of empty space.
Eat your regrets. Let them infuse you with the blessing of unnameable perfection.
Eat death. Let it scatter into ashes on fertile ground.
Eat your wound. Let it fill you with the marrow of unconditional kindness.
Eat your madness. Let it explode you into the breathless beauty of stars.
Eat your limitations. Let them press you into a radiant diamond.
Eat your hurt. Eat your devastation. Eat your unbearable heartbreak.
Swallow these poisons into the great heart.
Bear down and birth your own deathless body.
Your pain is the portal to power.

Kali Kali Maha Kali – the dark one, she who seeds dissolution of all that is false. 

And then we ask: what remains? 

Naked, you walk

Naked,
you walk 

the edge of a precipice

back where you

began        
again            
to end
begin

they say awakening
is a
360 degree turn

and you
have turned so often

falling down a bottomless pit
 
this state of            
suspended
motion

no beginning no end no forward no behind
no inside no out no up no down 
no where no when

you      are.

isness 
is. 

to live to 95 is a bigger commitment

to being an instrument of Life-
a willing puppet of the Gods

is to be falling 

end. less. ly

into the
[ v o i d ]

to live in God’s flow
full bodied immersion-
in surrender,

is

diving and driving in the dark 
not just once

but again                
and                        
again 

and yet again

all
ways.

I said, the emptier my vessel, the more the Divine can fill it.

Dancing ancestors into being

I had the privilege of dancing Oak Dance last weekend, my first step into Native American ceremonial space. It was time. I am American now.

Dancing to the Tree of Life to bring Light down into the earth for collective liberation. Dancing to celebrate Life, release and renew Self…While the core group danced in person, many of us were remote- satellites from our own lands.

Like every initiation, it was intense. And in the intensity, emerged revelation. It was a lovely experience and a chance to see my protection patterns in full swing!

I started out trying to do it right, by all the rules, dance in perfect sync with the group etc. rather than listening to and trusting what felt good and right to me was enough!

Much Tightness to start!

And then as I relaxed and surrendered.

To the ancient voices singing to the drum, to myself, my inner rhythm, to what is, to the intention rather than the form- there were deep openings.

I felt the field come alive.

As I danced my intention into being, I saw the late Lakota Chief, Ascended Master, holder of the light- Frank Fools crow’s face pop up in my mind.

Everything went silent.
I just cried and danced with abandon in that meeting for a while.

There are some beings who do that to me…Thich Naht Hanh, Paramhansa Yogananda…just the slightest brush with their field silences everything superfluous.

I return home.



And crying, dancing in the sound and the silence, I realized why they say not to take the lord’s name in vain…the power and grace of simple invocation is real. It was beautiful.

I felt the force of everyone dancing our collective intentions into being around this country.

Know that a group of souls danced for YOU. Prayers for your highest good have been imbued in the air you breath…the breath of Life.

Literally.

It was palpable and profound.

You see, no prayer is ever wasted- every prayer changes us and when we change, so does our world.

Maybe you have felt it too- the power of shared intention. Of community with healing purpose!

This is what MURMURATIONS is about, I remembered.
I smiled.

How lovely to be weaving sacred space into my every day. I feel blessed to give and receive the work that flows through me.


As we closed, I saw myself descend down into physical reality after three days in dreamtime!

I felt much gratitude for who I am, who I’m with, what we have done, and how we do it.

I am unmistakably different.
That’s transformation.

What a gift!
What a blessing!

And there is so much to grow into.
The power of my intention is weaving the dream for me to step into.
The Everything is listening.

Big breath in. Big breath out.

Thank you.
More please!

PS: IF you are interested in self-transformation in a powerful loving community, join us in the next Murmurations cohort starting July! More info below:

Metamorphosis is all around you.

This is not a time to hold back, it’s the time you’ve been readying for. Your life situation is the catalyst, your desire the compass, and Truth your guide.

Join this transformational community to dive beneath the surface and heal disconnects that keep you stuck, separate and suffering.

Heal inner division to embody vibrant wholeness. Release your past to answer the call of a creative future. Connect with heart, purpose and a community of care. Learn how life actually works, and use it to fuel your evolution. Take your rightful place in the expansion of collective consciousness.

together we will

  • Learn the foundational principles of healing and mysticism from your direct experience!
  • Benefit from being held in an energy matrix through the course specifically designed to support your growth.
  • Access personal, group and universal intelligence.
  • Share your gifts and receive what others have to offer, deeply seeing and being seen.
  • Create personal rituals to re-attune to inner wisdom and nature’s rhythms.
  • Learn and practice tools to embody presence, deepen connection to yourself, others and purpose.
  • Explore and set relational and personal boundaries that nourish your well-being.
  • Feel the freedom and healing power of vulnerability and authenticity.
  • Receive surprises and real transformation.
  • Create meaningful relationships based in mutuality.
  • Most importantly, all while having FUN!

course components

  • An intimate group of 8 peers for depth and personalized attention.
  • 12 Live, facilitated bi-weekly 2 hour calls with your group via Zoom.
  • Access to call recordings shared only with participants.
  • 2 individual 1 hr sessions with Ishita Sharma to align and deepen your growth online or via phone. Option to add more at a discounted rate.
  • 1 fine-tuned astrological reading for insight into inherited patterns and your particular life path.
  • 1 herbal consult to cultivate a conscious, nourishing relationship with the Earth in support of your intentions.
  • 1 virtual cacao ceremony with Giovanna Garcia to augment group coherence and connect to your own intuition. You will receive ceremonial cacao and preparation instructions.
  • Private online group for connection, sharing and growth with others between modules.
  • Each call will combine teaching with experiential individual, paired and group exercises, sharing and Q&A.

Zodiac Mantras

These mantras touch something so core and essential in me, I cry every time I meet them.

Excerpted from Alice Bailey’s Treatise on the Seven Rays, each describes the energy of the constellation through which the Soul chooses to incarnate- our deepest longing and purpose, embedded in sound with such simple profundity.

Writing it here so I can re-member and access this knowing as I make my way into Esoteric Astrology!

THE WORDS FOR THE SIGNS OF THE ZODIAC

From the angle of form. Natural order. Retrogression through signs.
Pisces through the Signs to Aries

Pisces
“And the Word said: Go forth into matter.”

Aquarius
“And the Word said: Let desire in form be ruler.”

Capricorn
“And the Word said: Let ambition rule and the door stand wide.

Sagittarius
“And the Word said: Let food be sought.”

Scorpio
“And the Word said: Let Maya flourish and let deception rule.”

Libra
“And the Word said: Let choice be made.”

Virgo
“And the Word said: Let matter reign.”

Leo
“And the Word said: Let other forms exist. I rule.”

Cancer
“And the Word said: Let isolation be the rule and yet the crowd exists.”

Gemini
“And the Word said: Let instability do its work.”

Taurus
“And the Word said:. Let struggle be undismayed.”

Aries
“And the Word said: Let form again be sought.”

From the angle of the soul. Spiritual order. Correct passing through sign.
Aries through the Signs to Pisces.

Aries
“I come forth and from the plane of mind I rule.”

Taurus
“I see, and when the eye is opened, all is illumined.”

Gemini
“I recognize my other self and in the waning of that self I grow and glow.”

Cancer
“I build a lighted house and therein dwell.”

Leo
“I am That and That am I.”

Virgo
“I am the Mother and the Child. I, God, I matter am.”

Libra
“I choose the way that leads between the two great lines of force.

Scorpio
“Warrior I am, and from the battle I emerge triumphant.”

Sagittarius
“I see the goal. I reach the goal and see another.”

Capricorn
“Lost am I in light supernal, yet on that light I turn my back.”

Aquarius
“Water of life am I, poured forth for thirsty men.”

Pisces
“I leave the Father’s Home and turning back, I save.”

What’s your part?

In light of recent events, I have been asking-

What are my implicit biases around gender, race, age and nationality?What are yours?

How are they affecting our discernment, and our ability to receive the gifts of those who we disagree with?

These are the questions I myself am sitting with and hope you will too. Last week I went in for an interview for US citizenship. After 19 years of living here, I will be granted the right to vote. The man who granted me this right was a Mexican immigrant, spoke with a Mexican accent, and represented the USCIS.

It was beautiful. In him, was the reminder that I will be just as much a citizen as anyone else. First, second or two hundredth generation Americans are all just that- American. And the law of a land must include and nurture all those who dwell in it- the Tao names this beautifully- IF we wish to create harmony. There are plenty of ways not to.

I have been mourning the sad state of this nation and this divisive politik that wants to get the worst in us.

I know what it’s like to come to a new land without 300 years of my ancestors living here before me- the loneliness, the hope, the despair, the fear of losing the life I have created on a single employer or govt officer’s whim. I know the pain of not being able to call home home, not knowing whether to buy real furniture because my visa may expire in a year.

And through this all, I know the incredible gifts of the Divine- I know what it is to integrate polarities of two divergent cultures within myself, bringing the best of each together, in new beautiful ways.

My family lives on four continents, and my children will be children of an immigrant and my God! I hope they protest louder than I have, calling for reform where reform must happen, because they’ll belong here in ways I am only just about to.

I know the immigrant story from the inside- and I assure you it is not the narrative of entitlement, America hating, self-serving drama we are often sold on the news.

Like wholeness comes from wholeness, trauma perpetuates trauma.

No amount of meditation or immersion in silence clears that out unless we’re truly willing to look in the mirror honestly, take responsibility for the ways in which we ourselves (each and every one of us) perpetuate pain inside and outside and sit with the unbearable within us rather than projecting it outwards, and of course, invite our own pain to be seen, known, lovingly held and transformed.

I content the era of the “power over” strong-handed authoritarian leader is coming to an end, and for that matter, I sense this may be the last time two white men in their 70’s are running this race.

A different reality is taking shape. Like a dying animal you can hear it going out with a scream.

Trump may well be re-elected as many people say (I don’t know), but that re-election is going to bring its own demise.

Even as I feel the collective cry for coherence, I do not think this country is ready to receive it just yet. For as Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev noted, “for a Buddha to rule the world, we must have Buddhas to recognize, and elect one.”

No. I do not think either candidate is the Buddha, but I can see the humanity of both- their failings and their goodness, through the veil. I hope you can too.

When (very soon) I am granted the right to vote, I will use it to elect the man who reflects power, not dominance, models empathy, compassion and humility, and has dedicated his life to serving our nation.

And that would be me doing my part.