Wednesday, January 23, 2008

It Never Rains in Southern California

But girl, don't they warn ya? It it pours! Rainy season is here, hooray! It's very wet and kinda chilly. After a bone dry year with the worst fires ever here in SoCal, this is a relief. I was able to stay home all day, working in my studio, cleaning, meditating, listening to the rain. It's rained a few days already this season, but today is the day I decided the Rainy Season had officially begun. Rain is very likely to continue every day, through the weekend, and most likely into next week. I am so happy; the air will be cleaner, spring will be greener, and I don't have to wash my car now!

Yesterday I was hired to do a house healing, for a woman I know whose home has been uncomfortable energy-wise for her to live in. This is the second time I've been to her home, and both times I've met her cat. He and I hit it off very well, he's a psychic cat. Yesterday he was very happy to see me, kept rubbing against me and saying hello. When the time came to read the energy and I sat down at the kitchen table, he jumped up on the table and got right in my face. "Look", I said to him, "I like you very much too, but I need some space so I can give a reading." He understood, immediately jumped down from the table and went somewhere to lie down for the duration of the reading. I was totally impressed with him. The reading went well, and my client was happy and more relaxed.

On the way home, I thought about space. Not outer space, or even inner space, but having space. Cats know about having space, and that cat instinctively knew what I was asking for. He was able to respond in a positive way without taking it personally. Which is more than people are able to do sometimes. Growing up in a large family, in a neighborhood full of large families, space wasn't exactly something people talked about having. One of my brothers moved into a long closet when he was a teenager. He had a twin mattress on the floor, his record player, and whatever else he could squeeze in there. The closet even had a tiny window. He was happy; he had his own room. The rest of us were also happy because he was easier to live with now. That tiny little closet became his sanctuary and gave him some space.

One of the reasons I first began meditating was because I wanted to have more of myself present, to have my space. I really can't imagine living well without taking time each day to do this. It is a creative act, also requiring patience and the ability to let go of needing to be perfect. Sometimes people think they are not ready to meditate because they get all squirmy and filled with silly thoughts. Meditation is seen as a serious, almost studious act. One must be kind of perfectly in a zone or something.

Here's the secret to meditation: it's never perfect. It's funny and messy and calming and also the opposite. Every time it's different. What I find works the best for me is amusement and forgiveness. Who do I forgive? First of all, myself. Next, whoever. The most important thing is that I am taking time off from busy-ness to work on my relationship with myself. That is the most important relationship I have. If that one is working well, I will be able to create my life as I see it.

"Winds of Change" 2006 33"x31" acrylic on vinyl in reverse
available at


Sweet Irene said...

I have to think about this one, because I don't truly meditate in the traditional sense of the word. I do have my periods of absolute quiet when I sit on the sofa and empty my mind of all unnecessary things and let my thoughts float where they may. It is a period of time when I absolutely don't worry about a thing in the world, but my cigarettes and my coffee and the quietness of the apartment. I find this to be very peaceful, so I suppose it is a form of meditation. Sometimes I am lucky and my mind allows me to switch it off like that and lets me have these moments of peace. I have done meditation and yoga in the past and I wonder if some of it stuck and I am now reaping the benefits of it. I have learned not to worry too much, although I do have attacks of that also, so I alternate between peace and worry.

I very much like the sound of the rain and how lovely it sounds at night when you lay in your bed and you hear it hit the pavement outside your window. I lived in SoCal and remember what a Godsend the rain was after a long dry season. Everything will turn very green soon and it will look beautiful.

Cats are very psychic, aren't they?

Chris O'Byrne said...

You are right on with the amusement and forgiveness! Most of the time when I start my sit, I suddenly get all sorts of crazy, frenetic thoughts. If I just chuckle at myself and forgive myself for being who I am, everything settles down. I always tell people it is like training a puppy. You never get mad or frustrated, you just gently and calmly come back to the moment.

John (Copyright JMM 2007-2008) said...

Excellent post on so many levels - writing, advice and grace. There is much grace here. It takes a while to discover it, I am a dolt, and I am just starting to.

You are creative and kind, and neither can be taught to an adult.

You are going to get my first mon.key award someday - need to design it....will come with a special inspired link.

Thanks again for the award yesterday. I noticed today I forgot to acknowledge you...I actually am quite shy and over compensate, sometimes.

Sweet Irene said...

I came back to look at your painting, because it is very beautiful. It reminds me of the creation of the earth when all was still chaos and unformed and yet there was the sun hiding behind the enormous storms of sand and ash. Somehow you make it not look like Dante's Inferno, but like a kind and magical process that will bring about life and happiness. I hope I express myself clearly, because sometimes it is hard to in the middle of the night. It is a painting with promise and hope. You are very lucky to be able to create these things.

Kris Cahill said...

Sweet Irene, It is a lovely thing to have those moments of peace, isn't it? That's something one of my favorite authors called "moodling". Brenda Ueland, author of "If You Want To Write", would encourage people to spend long delicious hours not doing. It is a way to allow one's creative juices to flow. Sounds like you know something about that, and from the look of your beautiful imagery, it works. Thank you for the lovely words about my painting.

Chris, I love that image of training a puppy. Sometimes that's just what it feels like. And you can't really train a puppy well by being mean to it! Thanks.

Kris Cahill said...

John, I don't know about the dolt part. Your truly thoughtful comments are very gracious and kind. Looking forward to my mon.key!

dianeclancy said...

Hi Kris,

I love this painting - it looks like a beautiful desert to me.

In my family space was a little different .. in that it was not allowable to want or to have space .. it was not just size of family but also being disloyal.

I LOVE to meditate!! When I was so sick for years, that was the one thing I could reliably do. I did it my own way of course, ... but it works great for me.

~ Diane Clancy