Apprenticeship to Love, Chapter 27, May 27, 2024

  • Today’s questions: Who sees you? And, what stranger do you see?
  • Today's suggested practice: to breathe and feel the tension, pressure, friction, and stress, and then allowing it to become more beautiful than you can imagine... (see my "Short Practice,” below)
  • My practice today: 4:30am: 60 minutes: asanas, mantra: chanting Akaal to aid the dead in their journey from this life



To be so seen.
To be so heard.
To be so received and known and loved. With all of my flaws.


Dear One, I wrote to her,
You told me, not so long ago, and I’m imagining it was after your beautiful tenderness was roughly treated by this world of men: There are so many others, but you see me, you hear me, you know me.


That was a powerful thing for me to hear. To know she feels my awareness, my love this deeply.

I slow down. I feel the breathe of the wind as She moves the clouds and the trees and the very air that I breathe in for life and joy, and tears too.

My friend has died. Our friend.


I was thinking about her words of being seen and known this morning as I thought of this tender stranger to this world, our friend.

What I am grieving is this: No one saw me as he did.

Or, perhaps as she did, before my fall. And, as perhaps she sees and feels some of my own tender strangeness to this world, now, as I’ve come to cherish and revere these qualities, now, instead of hiding from them. As I did, then, with her.


The fall —my fall— was a terrible thing. Not only for me, but for so many near me. And for her most of all.

I am sorry.

And I asked for her forgiveness. And I thanked her for not settling for the little I was wiling to offer.

I thanked her for everything she brought to me. And all that she brings to me. All of it. All of her. And especially her strangeness and the blessings of this strangeness.


My friend was with me as I fell.

He stood with me. He walked with me. He was with me as I went through the falling apart and the full flood of regrets that I needed to feel. Just there with me. With all of his strange depth and compassion —and his faith in me.

Or: His faith in this undoing. This falling apart.

Every time I asked, he heard me. Until finally, as we sat in the truck on that Monday morning outside the building supply store, my heart broke open. Months after her leaving my heart finally broke through my dry and cracked resistance, and I cried. The beginning of a tide of tears that was some time —months? years?— in ebbing. So much sorrow to know. So much regret to allow myself to feel.

He sat with me. Silent. Hearing me. Seeing me.

He didn’t wipe away the tears of the regrets. He did not try to lessen the sting of this most important lesson. He only sat, silently calling me to feel it deeper, and to trust myself as I felt myself so much deeper than I wanted to feel myself.


He was a strange and beautiful man.

He opened the world with his strangeness, and so many of us were made aware of how beautiful this life can be, by his opening and his strangeness.

Being seen like this, by him, opened simply by his seeing and his hearing, I began to see her, the dear strange one who woke me. His gentle and strange tenderness to the strange and mysterious of life, I allowed that to open me to seeing her and to hearing her and to knowing that her own strangeness to this life and this world continues to be a blessing to me. No matter what she does, or where she is. There is, he taught me, a powerful connection between us when we tune ourselves to this strange tenderness that is part of everything.

I am so grateful to her.

I am so grateful to my strange friend, for helping me to understand how much I need her to know the beauty of my life.


Thank you.
I love you.
I am here.



"The word Akaal means, “Beyond or without death,” and is most often chanted to help loved ones who have left their bodies connect with the Infinite. It is similarly chanted for those left behind, helping them to tune into the soul vibration of deathlessness. Chanting Akaal is also a deeply meaningful way to move beyond the limits of death, connect with the nature of the soul, and find love and peace in that realization."


🌀You do not deserve anything. (Kendra Cunov)

🌀 Each day, let’s ask ourselves a question on this quest... “What right do I have to be human?” (Guru Singh &Guruperkarma Kaur)

🌀There are so many others. But you see me. You hear me. You know me. (My beloved, she who must be ravished by my powerful and unwavering awareness)

🌀The Conscious Warrior makes death an ally, using it to sharpen his present actions, future plans, and current state of being. (John Wineland , Precept 11)


This month's practice, to breathe and feel the tension, pressure, friction, and stress, and then allowing it to become more beautiful than you can imagine:
Please read through first, then ...

  • Set two alarms, for times of the day when you have a five-10 minutes to become conscious of who and how you are in this day.
  • When the alarm sounds, wherever and however you are, take a few moments and:
    • Ask yourself: Who sees me? And, what stranger do I see?
    • Then, follow the short practice here:
      • Stand, or sit, or lay yourself down, and bring your attention to your body.
      • Feel the ground beneath you. Allow the earth to hold you with gravity. Feel how dense and heavy you are. Feel also how lightly you sit or stand or lay on the earth. Feel yourself between the pull of earth's gravity and the subtle but persistent pull of the sun, the stars.
      • Begin to breathe long and deep into your belly. Slow the inhale to a count of four or six. Slow your exhale to a count of six or eight or ten. Repeat three to five cycles of breathing, going a little slower with each cycle. Continuing to notice yourself held by the earth, raised by the sun and stars and sky above. Feel the subtle tension and pressure and friction and stress that allows you to be and rest and move in this body.
  • When you’re done, take another minute or two, breathing gently, slowly filling and emptying your belly. Here, as you breathe into your fullness, ask yourself, Do I feel right? Am I in alignment with the man or woman I am? Do I even have an inkling what that might feel like? Do I even have an inkling of what it feels like to be out of alignment with myself?
  • Notice if your body-mind feels somehow changed. And whether you notice a change or not, be content with yourself, exactly as you are in this moment.
  • Continue with your day until the next alarm sounds, and repeat.


- MAY 29: This month's [Apprenticeship to Love virtual workshop, with Tantrica Sarah Anderson](
- JUNE 5: [The next six-month online men’s group]( 
- JUNE 21: [The June *Community Call*](