Waking up to Wisdom
In Stillness and Community

What to Remember When Waking

--by David Whyte (Dec 30, 2013)

In that first hardly noticed moment in which you wake,
coming back to this life from the other
more secret, moveable and frighteningly honest world
where everything began,
there is a small opening into the new day
which closes the moment you begin your plans.

What you can plan is too small for you to live.
What you can live wholeheartedly will make plans enough
for the vitality hidden in your sleep.

To be human is to become visible
while carrying what is hidden as a gift to others.
To remember the other world in this world
is to live in your true inheritance.

You are not a troubled guest on this earth,
you are not an accident amidst other accidents
you were invited from another and greater night
than the one from which you have just emerged.

Now, looking through the slanting light of the morning window
toward the mountain presence of everything that can be
what urgency calls you to your one love?
What shape waits in the seed of you
to grow and spread its branches
against a future sky?

Is it waiting in the fertile sea?
In the trees beyond the house?
In the life you can imagine for yourself?
In the open and lovely white page on the writing desk?

-- David Whyte

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On Dec 27, 2013 Conrad P Pritscher wrote:

 I have not had felt it deeply even though I strongly think I am a part of the universe that needs to be expressed..
I have recently written about: skin color: the shame of silence. I am white. My parents were born in Germany and I have strong anti-fascist feelings. The Nazis killed 6 million Jews. I believe my relatives in Germany at the time could do little about it because of the coercive troops of Hitler. I also have not felt it deeply but I have strong thoughts about a threat to justice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, as Martin Luther King has said. I believe the 1% is now enslaving 90% of our US citizens. I also believe our country is moving closer to fascism. I am now writing about  that injustice and how schooling and university courses may be transformed to include students noticing their noticing while they are noticing.  Our schools and universities have become so enmeshed and specialized in training for jobs that we often graduate with many blind spots to our growing fascism. racism and sexism. Thank you for the opportunity to respond to this excellent work. Warm and kind regards to everyone..

On Dec 27, 2013 Conrad P Pritscher wrote:

 I forgot to add that Somik Raha recently found a Gandhi quote which stated:: "My notion of democracy is that under it the weakest should have the same opportunity as the strongest. No country in the world today shows any but patronizing regard for the weak. Western democracy, as it functions today, is diluted to fascism. True democracy cannot be worked by 20 men sitting at the center. It has to be worked from below by the people of every village."

On Dec 28, 2013 Ricky wrote:

So imagine when you wake.  Instead of relying on the alarm clock to frighten the more secret honest world away, begin to wake naturally by connecting to the biological circadian rhythm, especially in the first few moments of the very grey light of the northern hemispheric winter day off.  There is this glorious sense of gratefulness upon waking.  After a night of sleep, for most of us, we can wake slowly and become aware, albeit fleetingly, in that suspended state of wonder and thrill, hopefully within a cozy safe now physical space. 

Dr. Deepak Chopra has been quoted “Either you're a person wondering if you have a soul, or you're a soul who knows that being a person isn't real.”  In the honest secret world the soul knows, the universe expands, the intuitive creates and reveals, all while the carbon unit rejuvenates.  Most of our glimpses of enlightenment poof into the atmosphere, though, as soon as we enter into this dream of experience, here.
The moments of waking are the mind, body, spirit connection that can be accessed in an extraordinary Savasana experience (the pose of rest after a yoga practice).  Occasionally my students (ages 14-19) will arise from Savasana and ask me if it’s okay to be joyful and feel light.  Of course, is my response, and when pressed to use words to describe what they mean, they have none.  The brilliant radiance from their true essence, however, reveals all.  Ah, bliss.  What a wonderful journey for them.

I appreciate the phrase “To be human is to become visible while carrying what is hidden as a gift to others.” While more elderly humans seem to know this, young people peek into this opportunity at times as well, and the wisdom that comes from connecting to what is hidden is not age dependent. Young people hunger for connection with what they experienced when they were little ones, and open. They want to talk about this. They delight in remembering, and crave validation of their intuition. Many times they comment I haven't felt like this since I was five. They require silent quiet moments to connect again which can be hard to find in the world that is increasingly technologically distracting, and in many parts of the world, dangerous.   But, they need us to be there for them when they do ‘wake’.  Thank you for sharing the writing. I look forward to waking in the morning…one more time.

On Dec 28, 2013 david doane wrote:

 What I carry that is hidden and is a gift to others is any of my perception, experience, and wisdom that I don't express and openly share with others.  The urgency of expressing those hidden gifts is that my perception, experience, and wisdom don't last, they typically have a dream like quality to them in that they evaporate quickly, so it is important for me to express and share them when they are present.  Another urgency of expressing those hidden gifts is that they are special in that I am the only one who has and ever had and ever will have my specific unique viewpoint, and my life is short, and the opportunity to express and share my viewpoint is brief.  Coming to learn what I have just said results in my appreciating my unique gifts and realizing the urgency in expressing them rather than hiding them.  I've hidden too much for too long and it is important that I express and share rather than hide my gifts.  That is my responsibility and my privilege. 

On Dec 28, 2013 Amy wrote:

"To be human is to become visible
While carrying what is hidden as a gift to others.
To remember the other world in this world
is to live in your true inheritance."
This stood out most for me.  Here in lies the key.
Be Him Jesus, or just plain ole ordinary me (us), we carry God's Kingdom/plan and purpose (invisibly) within us.  Sure, each day alive here, we wake up in "bodied form". . But we are not OF this place/this life.  One day, free from the visible, we will soar!  For this I celebrate.  In remembering this, upon waking each morning, I am given adequate Light . . . Hope . . . And Direction for this day.  While here, my spirit is elevated to a different world . . . (Not ours, but His).  For these "glimpses" I wait.

On Dec 31, 2013 Mish wrote:

 Tearfully beautiful for me.  Happy New Year to all.  Blessed be.

On Dec 31, 2013 Mish wrote:

When I awaken each day I center myself in Light & decide that I will stay centered, choose to be happy, share my light with others, forgive myself if I get off-center & address any "difficulty" that may present, with light.  By making this Conscious effort , I experience greater equanimity & joy.  You can "choose".  This has changed my existence.

On Dec 31, 2013 Jagdish wrote:

 Just for communication, I name this kind of experience and living as the fourth dimension- a dimension that transcends the other dimensions of seeing, perceiving, thinking and expressing. it is beyond conceptual, philosophical and other boundaries. It is like being in the moment and not thinking about the moment. It is where the dance, the dancer and the dancing become one. I experience this fourth dimension in many contexts when chanting comes to me and I become the chanting, when i see a mom with her child being fully present to each other and I deeply feel a part of them and I feel that when I am holding a sad child in my arms. it is not even I and Thou.It transcends the I- Thou, a child and an old man- dimensions of the relationship.This a gift is  for both. It is cyclical experience and not a linear experience. The veil disappears and there blooms the beauty of the beloved, the Divine.

Jagdish P Dave

On Dec 31, 2013 aj wrote:

 Thank you.

On Dec 31, 2013 Keep centered, lim wrote:

 Right on, brother!

On Dec 31, 2013 God is so GOOD! wrote:

 Tears very good!  A Happy (and BLESSED) New Year to you, as well!   Midnight kisses and hugs your way from my way (a little early)!

On Jan 1, 2014 Amy Campion wrote:

Thank you for this.  Would you mind if I re-blogged this on my site,

On Jan 1, 2014 Kristin Pedemonti wrote:

 <3 this. I want to print it out and hang it up as a beautiful reminder to share what is hidden. I try to wake slowly and allow myself time to just BE and for the ideas in my head to slowly swirl around before getting out of bed. What I allow to be hidden is my sadness and loneliness. I've only recently started sharing my sadness publicly (as the "Bubble Hug Free Hug Fairy" people expect me to be upbeat all the time) so I hid my tears. As I started to show them it helped others to open up more too. The reaction of others was so kind and many said that when I allowed myself to be sad and show it, it helped them to release their feelings too. Let us all BE Fully who we are and be gentle enough to wake up slowly. HUG from my heart to yours! 

On Jan 7, 2014 Marianne wrote:

 Thank you, David Whyte, absolutely lovely.

On Feb 11, 2014 Linda wrote:

 In the deep mid winter, it is good to try to not wish for something,like spring, which is not what we have today.  It will. It make it come sooner.  We only have today, this sunny, cold, day, and what it holds is ours to discover through curiosity, patience, and wonder.  

On Feb 11, 2014 blessings wrote:

 I am with you, Linda!  SO BEAUTIFUL!  Thank you for your gift of 'thought in word' today.  I seek it.

On Jul 1, 2015 Jane Maureen Sheehan wrote:

 Remember  these reflections  young one through your Life.   Written from the heart by David Whyte.     Radiance of Love,  Your  Grandmother Jane Maureen Sheehan

On Aug 3, 2015 Vance Kennedy wrote:

This speaks straight to my heart.  To have such a profound wisdom is a great life accomplishment.  (Thank you David Whyte.)  To be able to capture it so eloquently for sharing with others is both high art and great generosity.  Thank you David Whyte.

On Apr 24, 2017 Nautica wrote:

I love this poetry. This is very good poetry. Very unique. And different. Keep it up love it

On May 10, 2017 Shant Joti wrote:

 Looking for the gift I thought I had lost... a joy so pure, such a happy child.. some 50 years passed, glimpses of it passed through my heart as thee most part was what we. All fun. I started looking for it... a lot of writing. Early every morning, many white pages  and a lot of deep breathing... which were where I found my joy. 
I did start writing and published but my writing is not polished. Even more joy when I realized that this 40 day coaching is excellent to get all the procrastination out and then get a good laugh at yourself and gratefully breathe . You see, English is not my first language. So I understood that one needs to get the joy out of each breath... from the first one of the day. Thank you David Whyte.

On Jul 17, 2017 Lynne wrote:

I find this particular poem to be very "Rumi-esque". Yes, I love it too!