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Farewell to the Warrior.

“The cave you fear to enter holds the answers you seek”

Joseph Campbell


“…only what you take with you.”

Yoda (Star Wars)


While Yoda’s catchy phrase seems obvious, it is actually crucial. In the story Yoda teaches Luke that whatever he takes into a confrontation is what creates for himself. In fact as Luke enters a cave (journey), he reaches for his defenses and straps them on, even after Yoda adds, “Your weapons, you will not need them.”   Luke dismisses him smugly and enters the cave. As he does battle it’s no surprise to us that those very same weapons Luke carries are the ones he is attacked with.  The point being why do battle when you were offered another way?


I understand that where “War reigns merrily” as Nostradamus would put it, warriors are required. I know warrior only too well.  In my first and only season in the College football league, I was the 2nd lightest/smallest league player and made Ontario All-star. Then through endless youthful escapades my body has received many broken bones, over 300 stitches, I have been hit by lightening, 13 car crashes, one plane crash and trust me, the list goes on and on. I am known as a survivor. So yes, I understand warrior mentality.

At the onset of any journey there are three key elements that invite the warrior to appear. For me readdressing those elements prior to a journey is an opportunity for a pivotal and essential shift in consciousness and a valued part of any new path. The three are; that most people assume there will pain involved, that you must experience the pain to release it and lastly once the pain is released you know something has occurred, you are healed. Enter thewarrior. The warrior says it will protect you, it teaches you to adorn yourself with defenses and shielding, it tells you to strap on your justifications as weapons, it tells you, you will be better, healthier, sexier and invincible during and after.  Now that you are ramped up and fully charged you feel better prepared to address your inner and thus outer conflicts. However, and here’s the hook, warriors need war and struggle to define one’s self.


It was a conflict that created your original wound, right?  Do you need more conflict?  When is enough enough?  What was lost that you would risk so much to reclaim?  How much conflict will it take to create your peace??


The warrior is seductive no doubt.  However it is masked, it is pure ego disguised as determination. It will tell you of all it’s attributes and contributions to bettering oneself or saving society.  Quite frankly it’s the reason uncountable trillions are spent on defenses in the world. The warrior must exist in conflict to be valued. It must become the thing it is fighting only then to realize it must be different after the conflict.


While a warrior may breed determination in war, war fails to equal determination. Sun Tzu (5th century BC), is regarded as a great general. In his book the Art of War he urges generals to be so well planned that the opposing forces retire without conflict. No loss of life or equipment. So what I am now suggesting is lets take the beginning of the journey one step further into truth.  Move from battle to being empowered by truth so that you may see a healthy desired outcome inspires determination and no warrior is required.


In my youth I may have misunderstood having a warrior mentality proved I was a survivor. Years later I now know survivors aren’t necessarily warriors. Survivors are survivors. They are keenly aware of their environments, attuned to the subtlest of changes yet grounded enough as not to be swayed by conflicting energies.  Survivors pay attention and walk confidently. What distinguishes a peaceful person and a true survivor? I honestly am unaware as they seem the same to me. A survivor is just in a state of being and in being everything makes sense. No reclamation, no defenses, no weapons, just a desire for peace within. This is truth and for me it is where I feel any journey must begin.


I am curious though, you heard him, my warrior right? He showed up a few paragraphs ago. In talking about being a warrior he awoke from his slumber and though groggy he spoke his justified voice in the comment about trillions being spent on weapons. Our warriors are cunning and you can easily see how happily they will take us to a place of conflict. I hope you can see the charge a warrior brings to a story and how encouraging him may not be in the highest for you. How subtly the warrior needs to shift a possible healthy outcome into confrontation under the guise of truth.  It is time to put mine back to sleep now, hopefully for eternity.



Enough said.


The One Handed Handstand Pt.1

Must the past always be Prologue?

In Shakespeare’s play The Tempest Antonio says, “What’s past is Prologue” as a way of saying what we do in our past will repeat itself.  And there is a good reason to feel that statement as accurate.  I also see it as in invitation. What if we see what has happened as an opportunity to consciously create another outcome, one that starts now? What would we need to do that?

I am often asked what I do.

In essence, I assist those seeking to redefine themselves, those who choose to move past the emotions and traits developed in times of stress so they may remember who they were before the event. 


The path for this transition is called a Journey.  And naturally the next question is “How does that work?” And that is a very good question.  A journey is an inspired path that encourages us to move beyond our wounds and limitations by embracing a desired outcome, a vision that fills us with unlimited potential.


Our true vision motivates us to what is possible. As we walk our path we do so knowing wounds can fall away the more we embrace what will be. Do we confront the wounds, yes and they may be uncomfortable at times.  Yet when we know why we are making changes in our life, those uncomfortable times are easily seen as process within transition. Free yourself of needing Warrior energy and I will explain later, for now suffice to say that warriors need war (WARriors), and what I am suggesting is about embracing something far more empowering, a true Brahma or Christ Consciousness energy.  As a dear close friend regularly points out, it’s about the moving towards healthy healed outcomes and to me this is what journeying is all about.


As I said I am often asked questions about journeys so our story together begins with me in meditation last September, preparing to lead a deep multi day Singing Bowl retreat.  There in the depth of my meditation I considered my body as one does. I became aware of how, even though I know better, I was unwittingly being affected by the transitional energies of others. In a desire to assist, I had also unconsciously complicated my life by not grounding my energy out or being as active as I love to be. My personal devotion to creator and self was being lost in service to another. I was being shown that I must balance my life by talking time for my self.


Interestingly, and probably not a surprising to you considering the title, this was seen as a vision of a young man doing a one handed handstand. Weeks prior I had seen a video of a young man performing the most incredible moves while balanced on one hand. The symmetry of what was being revealed was inspiring. The balance of healthy Male (strength) and Female (Grace and Fluidity) was revealed in his dedication. I was reminded of how my body was at that age, coupled with a good sense of balance. I knew this would have been something I would have loved to do.  And so our story begins. Let’s start with the warrior first though.

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The Art of Prevailing in Liminal Space (Part 3 of 4)

The Art of Prevailing in Liminal Space

Part 3 of 4

In Courage and the Crux.

While facilitating an “Essence Within” retreat, Judith, one of the participants shared the word “Liminal” and I immediately loved it. I could see an image of standing on the threshold of uncertainty and being inspired into new states of appreciation or being deeply moved to return to the familiar.

It always fascinates me to see what inspires us into a journey. How something undeniable alights within us, encourages us and then is supported by a series of amazing synchronicities. When those seemingly unrelated moments blend together we find a confirmation of what we already seem to know.  Then in courage, we move beyond all the previous considerations and justifications.  We act on that decision and in so doing we create a path.

On every journey, the protagonist, the climber and every path driven person reaches a key point or crux to their adventure. It is where reconsidering is more important than moving forward, where we meet our limitations and our dedication is tested. It  can stall us or move us to return to the familiar. It is the point where everything becomes very real and we ask ourselves

“Am I on the right path?”


1:a vital, basic, decisive or pivotal point,

2: a cross point,

3: something that torments by its puzzling nature, a perplexing difficulty.

If you are happy to return your accustomed path, fair enough. There are something’s we are only meant to experience, to consider and not act on.  Not every person who has ridden in a balloon is called to be a balloon pilot.

If your return is based in uncertainty, and we all do this at some point, you may feel a longing, disappointment or sense of inadequacy. Let go of worry for even this can be seen as a plus. For you have now realized that something yet unseen must be appreciated. You must see who you are in relation to it.  This process is often referred to as “needing time to integrate”. This is a time for you to rest, to gather momentum and clarity. That longing you’re feeling is the reminder and the encouragement to revisit or continue beyond the crux. Even if you must perform this act multiple times your decision and resolve will become stronger each and every time.

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The Art of Prevailing in Liminal Space (Part 2 of 4)

The Art of Prevailing in Liminal Space

Part 2 of 4

So Liminal space encourages you to be who you are. “Encourage” can also be seen as “In Courage” as any opposition encountered may test your dedication. It will also reveal to you a glimmer of hope; the more you walk towards hope, the brighter gets.


The further each of us explores the truth within, the more our doubts begin to ebb. In the beginning we may not know our destination yet; our journey will begin to share an overwhelming sense of direction. We then develop a “knowing” with our teacher and they unlock our hidden potential.


 “I could do this if someone can show me who I am and show me how I will do it.”


Through the guidance of our teachers we learn that we are both capable and free of the fear of condemnation. Then, self assured we stand empowered in that truth, we look to our teacher and their arms and smiles open wide. As the world opens up we see the answers were always around us. Always.


We will receive many teachers in our travels. Among them will be our Inner Guru and Mother Gaia. Mother Gaia begins teaching the minute we start observing Nature and our personal relationship with her. I feel this is why so many teachers and people who offer support to others are similar; they have been shown how to walk within Gaia’s guidance, feel her and hear her. She teaches us through her subtle clues and insights. As she does so, she does freely. Our only admittance is our dedication.


High Altitude Mountaineers might be an example of nature meeting vision. In hopes of fulfilling a vision, they’ll meet their own limitations.  Like the spiritual climber, their vision tells them that they can summit and their doubt tests them by asking if they have what it takes.  In hopes of achieving that goal, each Mountaineer learns that climbing to the top of a mountain is only part of the journey. The journey is about their dedication to that vision and embracing it as a driving force in their life. They must live the life of a high altitude climber and identify themselves with that life. They learn their limitations and Mother Nature’s strengths. In so doing they begin to move in concert with Mother Gaia: To move when she allows and to wait patiently when she says to. This is why every climber will tell you the actual climb was a small part of the journey.


For thousands of years Hindu and Buddhist teachers have shared that the Guru who waits for us atop the mountain is our own inner Guru. When we seek to redefine ourselves by ascending a mountain or a spiritual mountain, the journey becomes about letting go of hindering beliefs and by benefiting in our strengths – ideally our truths. This proverbial place where truth is found exists between vision and the summit. I see this space as Liminal Space.

Part 3 coming soon.

– Mark Daniel

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The Art of Prevailing in Liminal Space (Part 1 of 4)

The Art of Prevailing in Liminal Space

Part 1 of 4

There are many people searching for and sharing Journeys. Having been led there myself, I understand the draw and the reasons.  For many of us there’s something fulfilling about journeying back or looking ahead to pivotal points in our lives and reassessing their importance on us.

It has been my experience that interwoven within all teachings is a very similar set of skills and traits that are intrinsic to every path. And the reasoning for this is of course very obvious, they work. So, if getting to the “higher” realms follows well known and time tested paths and all the paths are similar in some way, then why are there so many paths? And again the answer is obvious, to reach everyone.

It is fascinating that one truth always surfaces on our path, the truth of what we are called to do. It was always there, always in front of us. So when we choose to walk it, even when we’re unsure where it will lead, that truth always becomes clearer.  Until the moment we choose to walk that path, we tend to live among a long list of reasons for denying it’s existence or even call it elusive. These reasons can be found in past lives, wound, error in judgment and all the adaptations we made to seemingly balance those reasons. Those aforementioned distractions will remain until the day we stand on our path, folded map in hand and ask “Am I really worthy enough?”

The answer is always “Yes”.


Adjective, lim-i-nal

1: of or relating to a sensory threshold

2:barely perceptible

3: of, relating to, or being an intermediate state, phase, or condition.

(Thank you Merriam

Whether you are wondering, starting on, or somewhere on your path, this Liminal space encourages you to be who you are.  Encourage can also be seen as “In Courage” as any opposition encountered may test your dedication. It will also reveal to you that following that glimmer of hope is all that is required. The more you walk towards hope, the brighter gets.

More to come….