Thursday, March 18, 2010

Circles of Intention

This morning I am pondering the warp speed of life as I sit looking out over the Santa Barbara Mission, the ocean and the Channel Islands in the distance.  The morning is pink and warm, exactly what I thought I wanted when I decided two months ago to spend six weeks soaking up the green California spring.  Sometimes it seems, though, that life has its own plans which makes me wonder about the inner workings of fate and free will.  How much of the unfolding of our lives is already written and how much do we hold in our own hands?

In some ways it seems like a playful dance of inertia and momentum. Once we start to move, there seems to be grooves we slip into that lead us almost effortlessly to places we never expected. Two months ago I was in Colorado yearning for spring.   That yearning started the motion that now seems to be rolling my life onto a completely new path toward a new place to live and new work.

Last Friday I met with people from a company I've been associated with for the past three years.  They write educational master plans for community colleges and three years ago I was involved in a small way with the writing of a plan for a new, public high school in the Sierra foothills.  It was one of the most exciting projects I had worked on but when it was finished, there was no thought of doing anything more with them or the project and I moved to Arkansas thinking that was my "happily ever after" life.

But, the school got built and is now rapidly becoming an exciting success story and I was invited to come back and look at what they created, partially by using our master plan but mainly by the shear energy and vision of the school leaders and community.  As we talked, ideas began to flow, energy surged and by the end of the day, a tangible trajectory was in place.  We are starting the process of documenting the successes of this school with the idea of being able to share the processes and principles with other schools. 

It's a fledgling project but enough to pull me back to California and into the world of "work."  I've been studying the world of intention for the past several months but sometimes I wonder which is more powerful ... our conscious "intending" or our less conscious "yearning."  As I watch my own life morph into new shapes, it seems like if I just follow my yearnings, wonderful new things appear which I wouldn't even have thought about intending.


  1. I think there is always a constant tugging and pulling and pushing, and then your heart says, Go.

    It's wonderful to have your post to read. Please keep us up to date.

  2. Hurray! I've been missing you, and suspecting/hoping some big shifts might be occurring. This sounds wonderful!

    I confess I, too, have reservations about intentions. But I learned early that the things I consciously worked towards were often flawed (makes me think of that Oscar Wilde quote: "The gods have two ways of dealing harshly with us -- the first is to deny us our dreams, and the second is to grant them."). I think that what we know at the intentional level never has the wisdom of the knowledge we carry at that deeper level of yearning. So, yes, I believe you are wise to follow your yearnings! Congratulations!

  3. Maureen and Diane ... thanks for your comments and thoughts on intention ... I really like the idea of tapping into deeper wisdom.

  4. Thank you Joyce,
    Do you think that sometimes we interpret our yearnings and dress them up with what we think they should look like, hence, intentions. I suspect if our yearnings are strong enough they have their own momentum.
    As always you are an inspiration to me