Snapshots of a Good Life


Some experiences, snapshots and questions to reflect upon this month.

Pausing into Perspective

I started my morning with a beautiful surprise. Julie and I came across an earth rainbow today on the ground. A very cool surprise! Some hidden damp moss catching the light and forming a rainbow on the pavement.

We walked right by it at first. In the routine of our morning walk, the routine itself blinded us from the sight. I ended up pausing, and it was in the pause that the rainbow became visible.

This illustrates why pause is so important in our life. It gives a person a chance to be aware of and connect to the world. Seriously, no one would expect to see a rainbow within asphalt pavement. By pausing you can release all expectations and see everything with a fresh perspective.

snapshots of a ground rainbow

Snapshots of Larger Patterns

So many people try to force life to be a routine. To let everything repeat in the same moment. In doing this, a person disconnects from their senses. Our senses require change and edges to trigger. The trap of being in a routine is to miss the patterns of the larger world.

Look more closely, and you will discover hidden patterns. Life still moves and spirals around over time.

Here is the moon dancing over a month in a sky at the same time over 30 days.

Let life shift over time and move with your nature. Occasionally shift your routine to catch glimpses of the larger world.

moon over tao

Seeing Something New

As our world changes, be crazy enough to invent new options. This picture of a peacat made me smile as it was new and outside my imagination. It helped expand my world. Again don’t let routine blind you to new experiences! I found this picture by poking around in new areas of the internet.

When I saw this picture a few weeks ago, it was a reminder that despite the times being crazy, it also feels like people are pushing to be more creative. The creativity of others inspires me to be more creative. Creativity is not linear, and one act of creativity can spark a person to leap onto a totally different path.

From this moment of writing I ponder these two truths:

  • Be brave enough to push ahead to change against the change ahead rather than fear change.
  • While humanity faces great challenges, we need creativity as part of the positive change .

Snapshots of Our Imagination

Avoid Being Fooled By Others

All the recent political corruption led to a student asking me this question:

Why do people get fooled by politicians and abusers over and over again?

The answer can be found in this simple truth:

Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame of me…

No one likes to be the fool! To see oneself as a fool will stir up deep judgment against oneself.

A simple truth: people are unwilling to blame themselves which means: to escape personal blame they will instead allow themselves to be fooled a third time and even more afterward. Never underestimate the power of denial to trap a person in an endless loop of self-abuse that will seem foolish to someone outside the process.

Until you teach a person to release self-judgment, self-denial will keep them fooled.

Worse if you judge a person as getting fooled: it forces them to double down and hold the external lies fooling them. So as an outsider we need to be kind with non-judgment and help a person de-tangle slowly from the lies tangling them down.

So the foolish truth is:

Helping heal the world against crooked politicians and abusers is to teach people how to be strong in themselves. To not judge oneself or another guilty for the mistake they made in taking the word of others taking advantage of them.

When juggling blame: it’s best to break the judgment game and in personal strength find it’s time to jump off the negative cycle of personal recriminations you have lived against. Repeat 1000 times after me now: The path to break free from a chain of fools is to release judgment.

Live your life on your terms rather than what others lead you to live. Until we teach people how to do this, they will continue to give their power away to crooked politicians and others who abuse them.

Don’t be Fooled By Routine

People don’t like to change. One trap is that many people will use a routine to hide from change.

On Average People Dont Like Change!

Sadly many people prefer being fooled rather than face change. You can fool a person in many ways to appease this desire of not changing. It’s foolish to think nothing changes since life is rooted in change. Evolution is all about change.

So instead embrace change to strengthen yourself against being fooled by others.

Surviving Change to Discover Beautiful

A snapshot of the Atacama Desert blooming. Rainfall is an edge to grow against, for all life, within a desert.

Change, while scary for most people, can be very beautiful.

Know the two sides of change:
For (1) those who witness change and (2) those who are within change.

Change in the desert looks beautiful for us outside of it. For the plants, it’s a harsh race for survival. They have to be extra bright to attract pollinators. The plants only have briefest moments to work against and survive to the next generation.

It’s easy to see beauty when change is outside of ourselves. It’s harder to see the beauty within our own personal change. It’s often after the fact when having time to digest everything (to be outside the change for a moment) that we see the beauty of our change.

Change represents an edge, that edge can be the difference between life and death. In more extreme environments, edges are the path for survival. This is why it’s hard to see beauty for our own change; we are often working hard to survive the change. So, if possible, take time to pause within any larger change you are within to help yourself gain perspective, this will you help craft the beauty to come. However, it’s also important after surviving change to take time, reflect upon what has happened, and then continue evolving the process along. If you are living then change never truly stops. (We merely pause once in a while to rest and extend our awareness so we can add grace to our process of change.)

Work with your own edges to be graceful. Yes, others will see you bloom. Be aware while it’s beautiful for others, it’s hard nail-biting work for you. We often don’t get to appreciate the beauty of our own edges (After all we are then too busy to survive against that edge).

This is why I am teaching this now. Always turn around the hard change moments of life around to be more than just about survival. Always include some energy towards the beauty that can also come out of the process.

Snapshots of Humanity
Siberia’s Indigenous People

Snapshots of Humanity

A few days ago I came across an amazing photo project of Alexander Khimushin. It’s a beautiful project connecting us to others around the world.

In the last few hundred years as the world came together, so much has been lost in the merging of cultures. The next decade will be critical for humanity as it’s likely we will lose more in 20 years than we did in 200 years.  The average person may not think they are part of this process of loss, yet we each are part of this chapter of merging humanity.

I don’t have larger answers for this challenge. I only have a handful of small answers. Some of the steps are outlined in the changing world handbook and these can help. At least in small steps, it will buy some time to evolve and find larger answers. I am not giving up; I am continuing to push and work in kindness to make a difference. Over time with practice, as more souls practice kindness we can work together for larger answers.

We are one world. Know your stories, Listen to others and share. Be willing to learn the stories from others to remember our larger humanity.

Snapshot Archer
Photo by Batzaya

Snapshot of a Good Life

Personally this last month I have slowed down, pausing a bit more than normal.  Whenever I find myself pausing unconsciously, I pay attention. I have learned these are times to watch more carefully and to also become stronger while pausing.  While I don’t think anything outrageous is going to happen this month, it never hurts to rest and pay attention to current events.

No matter how you look at things, these are crazy times.

My final note to share with everyone is a reminder to strive towards a good life. While the times might be crazy, that doesn’t mean we have to hide from living a good life.

So how do we live a good life in such times? Many of the posts and articles here will give you clues. Last months blog post was a pep talk to help inspire people to push and grow in our times.

Let’s take a step back and look at life. What does it mean to be whole? Let’s look at our life as a series of snapshots.

Snapshots of Body

snapshots of a good life

Our physical form is our root definition. It is the soil from which we expand and grow out from. Don’t be afraid to touch the universe and play. Unfortunately, modern times have made people afraid to embrace a physical life. For example laws in Hong Kong making it illegal to walk on the grass, to connect to nature. Society tries to remove physical action from people and control them thru their stories. Fighting oppression becomes hard when you fear reality!

A good life requires stepping into your physical actions and making them your own.


Snapshots of Mind

snapshot of your life
Art By carriezona


The mind holds our stories and words. Stories are the bridge that connects body and spirit together. While a story may not be real, people often try to hold their stories as a physical reality. This often creates conflict when different versions of memories and stories don’t match up. Always allow stories to be flexible. Look for the stories within the stories and keep growing. If you do this, you will then find the hidden gems of truth we use to anchor stories into our reality or expand our spiritual exploration.

A good life requires your stories to be flexible.


Snapshots of Spirit

what is a good life?
Art By Deligaris


Always remember imagination is the seed from which we expand into our greater spirit. This doesn’t lessen a spiritual experience, rather the more vivid we allow our imagination to grow, the deeper our journey into spirit can go.

We can fold and shape spirit. This becomes spiritual origami that so many different practices are based upon. In other words, don’t limit spirit only to be another story. While we use our imagination to create a story shell to initially give birth to a spiritual experience, what we can do with spirit goes far beyond the stories of mind.

A good life requires you to expand spirit beyond just being a story.

Pulling it all Together

We move through a weave of events and people.

  • Each step a physical experience to embrace.
  • Each moment a story to remember.
  • Each inspiration a spiritual experience connecting you to creativity and the next step ahead.

All merging together into a collage we call: Ourselves, Casey, You, me, all our names shifting from moment to moment in our experiences.

We are Body, Mind, and Spirit.

Take the time to pull all three together so you can live a good life.

Explore Your Essence

Essence is Your Core Nature

Knowing your Essence
Smoothes Out
Your Life

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Hello Casey. As always, when I come here I find inspiration. When I first found the Personal Tao back around 2013 or so I was looking to find the identity of something I had already known of when very young. I considered it deep spiritual wisdom. I found it here, but it has no identity. This wisdom I was looking for is perhaps most closely identified in the time and space where ancient Chinese Taoism and Zen Buddhism are intersected, centuries ago. But, there is no identity of this. ( I just realized, this is the teaching of chapter one… Read more »

Loved this post with the photos and the commentary. I think I found your site some months ago, and now I’ve stumbled across it again. I have loved the Tao Te Ching for decades, and spent several years studying and contemplating the original Chinese — one of the most powerful and transforming things I’ve ever done. I was lucky enough to study Taoist healing practices for many years with a teacher here in Portland OR. It seems to me that your own experience and what you offer now through your retreats and other services would be tremendously beneficial. And your… Read more »

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