Adversity to Alignment

I write, and I start; write and I stop; what can be said in these times? Only that what many consider real out there is simply not my reality. Yet how to explain this so that people don’t feel as though I am being careless or crass? The fact is, I care so much about the future of this planet and the life upon her that I cannot participate in the waves of fear that the Powers That Be are broadcasting on a global scale. Last night’s global meditation proved I am not alone. The energy was amazing; palpable. Our choice is ever to be subsumed in the old paradigm or to gather with like minded souls and unseen helpers and step into the New.

I happened upon a video last evening and watched it straight through. This is not typical of me, I get fairly bored with watching anything on my phone. And yet it pretty much sums up what I am feeling. You’ve got to get past the first questioner who is having trouble framing her queries to the hosts. I am sure she is nervous. Still, there’s content there that might be familiar to some. And once past that first five minutes or so, it gets rich fast.

So honestly? If I could say it better, I would. There have been many days in the now-distant past that I felt compelled to write and fill in some of the missing links. In this case, it’s already done for me.

Aloha, dear readers. Align yourselves and change the world. 💗

Independence Day Reflections, 2017

The best intentioned among us can become discouraged at the apparent hijacking of governments by corporations and special interests of the financially privileged. Yet if vigilant, one can witness changes being made at grass roots levels, mostly because people are beginning to collectively awaken to the harsh realities of global warming and endless warring, and it’s about time. Uniting as One People is the promise of this Aquarian Age, and we can go willingly or be dragged, kicking and screaming. I suspect we are witnessing a bit of both, and this will only intensify with this thousand-year spin cycle.

I am looking forward to more independent actions on the part of citizens who value peace and sustainability over war and destruction on this precious planet. While I don’t harbor any illusions that we can reverse much of the damage done, I rejoice in any efforts to unite in a non-aggressive way to solve some of the world’s most pressing problems. My hope is that it helps more people recognize unity across borders; that we begin to collectively value all life as sacred and that we as human beings continue to dissolve the Great Walls that separate us, one from another.

This is the my intention as the US rings in yet another Independence Day tomorrow. In peace and with Aloha, Bela





What Cannot Be Taken

Here we are, 3000 miles in the middle of the sea; not even remotely trying to be part of the mainland culture most folks who were born in Hawaii simply call America. It is enough, this melange of beautiful people whose origins always make for good guessing games. We’re all in a state of becoming anyway, individually as well as collectively. If we’re eventually morphing into a more human race anyway, love is color blind, though not everyone recognizes this yet.

Imagine a world with no racism or divisiveness, simply because we collectively finally admit that Planet Earth would be eternally boring without diversity. Imagine such an abundance of shared love that we let one another be, not hoarding what we’ve got or trying to diminish another’s largesse of spirit.

When we lived on Moloka’i over 20 years ago, we were the object of racism because we were white or haole (literally translated as life without spirit). White people do indeed appear ghostly next to the rich complexion of most Pacific islanders. So we got to learn firsthand what it felt like for millions of other people throughout the world who have suffered because they looked different from the majority of society. What an invaluable experience. And though racism is still alive in Paradise, one may observe Aloha to by far be the prevalent sentiment. The breath of life to you! How utterly refreshing.

As U.S. citizens are looking at liberties previously taken for granted with a bit more scrutiny these days, I ponder freedom as it pertains to me. I do not choose the freedom to crush others I view as potential and distant threats, robbing them of their own sense of security and serenity. I choose instead to support the liberty we all secretly yearn for in our hearts, no matter what and where we’ve come from. I choose daily acts of kindness and a personal practice of mindfulness. Being aware of my words and thoughts, this sometimes difficult practice keeps me walking my talk as best I am able.

Victor Frankl suffered enormous physical and psychological pain as a result of Hitler’s concentration camps. He later became an eminent psychologist and prolific writer and offered, Everything can be taken from a man or a woman but one thing: the last of human freedoms to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way. 

What is the attitude you choose that supports your own way without robbing others of the same? How do you support this in daily living?

In Peace and with Aloha,

(bj image: 1993, Maunaloa, Moloka’i)





There have been many reasons these past few years to feel deep remorse as an American; things that a government ‘by the People’ should never have enacted on The People’s behalf. I could write a treatise on these assaults to our humanity, but will spare you that, at least.

In our country, lines have been increasingly blurred with regards to separation of church and state, and I am flooded with gratitude today that our Supreme Court, at least, has demonstrated wisdom in reinforcing this boundary.

Freedom to love whom we wish without legal bias can only give rise to protection under the law for everyone. It’s all I can do to sit still and write this. Consider it my virtual dance of delight.


We live in a culture of individuality:
what we aspire to,
a filling ourselves up
with ourselves.
Ah, the miracle!
We might well fear loneliness
in quest for that unique seed
we term Self.

Still, something inside thrums,
knows to its core we are not now,
nor have we ever been
That is the myth of modernity.

What have we left behind then,
in this search for singularity?
How can we exist as unique,
save in relation to others?
Without them, who will tell us
of our wonder, our splendor,
our prowess and might,
our superior intellect?

Who will be there to stroke
our massive ego
in a strange little universe



How can it be in this land of plenitude,
our fellows spilling out now
into city streets, smearing pristine glare
of glossy retail windows
with the crime of their insanity?

I walk and talk with open heart,
not from a place where vacant stares
meet hollow eyes;
hear his story, however true,
offer a meal he declines,
proud he is employed, no longer able
to dig holes, he says,
since someone crushed the back
of his skull with a rock.

Live long enough and it all seems plausible,
as we stroll along, talking unselfconsciously
in a throng of iPhone-toting trust fund youth,
oblivious to the suffering their lack of empathy
stamps securely on a world they inherit.



I began leaving home in the womb,
winter-weary parents packing up
kids and dreams, fleeing frozen for fallacy
ill conceived through jeweled blinders,
backs turned stubbornly on a kinder fate.

No Valley Girl at heart,
I came to rely upon mountains and creatures
too small for others’ eyes
before residential areas, subsumed by cloverleafs,
merged to obliterate views while human refuse piled up,
pockmarking Mother Nature’s fair face.

Indulging in what remained of pungent eucalyptus
and bright streamwater, dappled desert sunlight
shook through crescent foliage,
disrupted only when golf course dozers began pushing it,
face-down, into memory.

I knew stars then, before too many streetlights
overwhelmed their brilliance, and all the glittered heavens
dropped in dismay onto garish costumes and red carpets,
orange groves morphing into curbside lawns scythed
under blades of immigrant workers, slaves to glitterati
far removed from etched faces of arroyos and succulent nopales;
freeways bisecting the city’s heart like some mad surgeon on a bender.

As capillary-rich earth flesh receded beneath vast rivers of asphalt,
lack of sufficient life force banished my spirit from that place
as a numb acceptance of the inevitable set in;
sights fixed now on distant horizons.


TKR: In Remembrance


Everyone is so afraid of death, but the real sufis just laugh; nothing tyrannizes their hearts. What strikes the oyster shell does not damage the pearl.

~ Jelaluddin Rumi

There’s mystic beauty in the Kohala mountain range, visible through picture windows overhead. The bluest sky and the kindness of strangers contrast the polished wooden box of ashes draped with mementos and lei. It’s why we carry on, I suppose, with this push/pull paradox of living. 

Vigilant for justifications to persevere, we discover hearts strengthened by this young woman’s radiant smile. All that remains is her photograph, yet it still lights up the room. Here, mourning contrasts the clatter of the outside world, carrying on as it does with laughter and petulance; calibrations and artifice. Not yet pared to essentials, it is easy to take others for granted until empty arms no longer embrace the beloved, transcending worlds.

Thus redemption is discovered, not in an imaginary world none of us is sure of, but in the eternal love sensed in the cells, just as every tree and flower lean toward the light and effortlessly surrender temporal bodies to the soil. Our spirits are nourished by the compost of kindness; enlarged through a desire to reach out and comfort another. Grief shakes out the folds of insecurity and judgment, uniting us in what is common to the human experience.

None living are exempt from this cycle of existence. And so we bless you on your journey, dear one, and merge back into the traffic that is our lives.


Bridging Cultures

I cannot tell you what a relief it is

sitting amongst those raised with means and ways

foreign to mine as the surface of the moon.


Laughter of young children acting out

like I never could;

relaxing into parental anarchy,

rather than worrying about raising them

with some skewed interpretation of rightness.


What can I say about those who likely will

never go to college, except to let them be

who they are.

The world needs diversity more than another lawyer;

another veneered politician spinning rhetoric

from a glossy tongue bought by a corporate constituency.





Blogging provides a virtual and sometimes therapeutic channel in which to pour one’s thoughts and feelings that, in turn, insinuate themselves into the collective like dye injected into a crystalline ocean. Slowly spreading, the new medium eventually becomes assimilated into the existing one, and a hybrid is born. We are changed and the world changes us.