What’s In the Way IS the Way – Mary O’Malley
Mary O’Malley is an author, counselor, inspirational speaker, and teacher of awakening who resides in Kirkland, WA. She has just published “What’s In the Way IS the Way.” The Foreword is written by Neale Donald Walsch, author of Conversations with God. In addition to Neale, Mary’s books are also endorsed by Eckhart Tolle.
Jeff Foster recently said, “Her message is medicine for the world.”
Mary was raised in an abusive household, and as a young woman, she was on a dark journey which included extreme compulsions, multiple suicide attempts, and many hospitalizations. She is an inspiration because she knows darkness, overcame her challenges and compulsions, and found the pathway back into the joy of being fully alive.
Today, at age 68, Mary is making a positive difference in the world by guiding others to see through their own shame, judgment, greed, hatred, entitlement, anger, and fear, so they can heal their inner wars and experience a trust-filled connection with Life. Having walked the path she teaches, she inspires others to live from the place in which the impossible becomes possible.
What’s In the Way is the Way offers life-transforming perspectives and tools for working with all of life’s challenges – relationships, work, health, compulsions, etc.
Below you will find a short excerpt from the last chapter from Mary’s new book and a wonderful article entitled “Accessing the Meadow of Your Well-Being (comprised also of excerpts from the book).”
If this special post/sharing resonates with you, which I truly believe it will, then do yourself a favor and pick up a copy!
Awakening for Life
The following is an excerpt from the last chapter of What’s In the Way IS the Way entitled “Awakening for Life.” It alludes to the core metaphor this book is created around – that we lived in full connection with life when we were young and slowly, as we grew up, clouds began to settle around our heads (the storyteller inside of each one of us that struggles with life).
Everything we have been exploring together…is opening you again to the creative flow of Life. This is about saying “Yes” to Life. That doesn’t mean that you sit down by the side of the road and let it run you over. It means that at your core you know that everything in your life is for you: it is not just a random series of events. Life is an intelligent process. It knows what it is doing and it is safe to open to it.
This brings you into full engagement with what is happening rather than staying caught in a conversation about Life. We could call it ‘surrender,’ but this doesn’t mean being defeated. It is about finally giving up your war with what Life is bringing you! We could also call it ‘humility,’ but the dictionary misses its full meaning when it defines it as “lowliness, meekness, submissiveness.” True humility is a state of great availability. From this kind of openness, you finally realize how smart Life is. This fosters a shift from the mind that tries to control to the heart that connects.
Can Life be trusted?
Alan Watts, the celebrated philosopher, author and teacher once said, “…it appears as a vivid and overwhelming certainty that the universe, precisely as it is at this moment, as a whole and in every one of its parts, is so completely right, as to need no explanation or justification, beyond what it simply is.” In other words, it is safe to open to Life!
To open to the way things actually are, rather than always trying to make Life be what you think it should be, is the most courageous and healing thing you can do. When you see through the game of struggle enough so that the veils between you and this living moment – this miraculous, incandescent moment – lift, you become a healing presence in the world. Moments of full connection with Life matter. In fact, they matter more than you can possibly know. They are what will heal our world!
Accessing the Meadow of Your Well-Being
Imagine a beautiful meadow where there is a rainbow of wildflowers, along with the heart-opening music of birds. The smells of the heather and the pristine beauty of the surrounding mountains all bring forth a deep sense of peace. In this meadow, everything is energy. Everything flows and is at peace. The same is true for you. You may have no memories of this kind of well-being, but there was a time when there were no thoughts in your head. Past and future had no meaning for you, so this moment was all there was. Because you weren’t searching for a better state, you were open to it – all of it – and Life was okay exactly as it was. Even when there was pain and discomfort, you fully experienced it rather than turning it into a problem in your mind. As you grew up, you were conditioned to be afraid of Life and you lost sight of the beautiful meadow of your being.
There are five core qualities (flow, spaciousness, light, love, and stillness/peace) that are the essence of the meadow of your well-being and as you learn how to open into Life, you will live from these qualities. They have always been with you, but you haven’t noticed them because you have been too busy living inside your mind.
In the great circle of Life, flow shows up in the dance of day and night and changes from one season into the next. Death is also a part of this flow. Life arises out of mystery, expressing itself in an amazing variety of forms, and each and every one will dissolve back into mystery. Even the invisible world flows. Light shows up as waves of energy, each color being a different frequency. Sound is simply waves of vibration touching your eardrum.
The only thing in all of creation that doesn’t flow is the human ego. It has declared that there is a me in here and then there is Life out there. It believes itself to be separate from the flow of Life and believes that its job is to control it. It lives from fixed positions – good/bad; right/wrong; liking/disliking. As long as you see yourself as separate, you will view Life as a potential threat and will withdraw from the flow of Life.
The second quality is spaciousness. If you look carefully, you will see that Life loves space. Right now, you are sitting on a planet that is dancing through vast oceans of space and it is 24,000,000,000,000 miles to the closest star. Then there are stars that are billions of times farther away than that! Can you even begin to imagine how much space that is? And this is all happening in a universe that seems to have no end.
When lost in your thoughts, you live in the tight and narrow space of your mind. When you are open to this moment, spaciousness permeates your body, mind and heart. Imagine a morning that you get up and the ‘to-do’ list is ignored. Instead, you luxuriate in bed. You linger at breakfast, and you follow your heart as to how the day will unfold. This is a day in which you feel the deliciousness of spaciousness. You unhook from the mental pressure of having to do something and instead enjoy the flow of Life. This is your natural state that can be accessed no matter what is happening in your life. To live from spaciousness doesn’t mean that you will want to disengage from your life. It means that you won’t be fighting with it anymore.
As you reconnect with space and flow, you can know the third aspect of your being which is light. In the Creation story at the very beginning of the Bible, it says, “And God said, let there be light!” And according to the Book of Genesis, this statement comes before the creation of the sun and stars. We think of light as coming from the sun, but the leading edge of science is now saying that everything is made out of light. David Bohm, the grandfather of quantum physics, once said that matter is just frozen light!
You have so much energy within you that wants to be let out of the prison of your struggling mind so it can expand and dance, and when energy is free to flow, it shines. This is what you are hungry for – your own radiance. There is no accident that when a great burden has been lifted or you feel very happy, you oftentimes say “I feel so light!” It is also no coincidence that the word delight means ‘of light’! Even pictures of saints point to what we are talking about. The reason that most of them are painted with halos around their heads is because they broke free from the prison of the struggling self, allowing their light to shine, and people recognized this light.
When you rediscover the spaciousness of being open again to the great flow of Life, feeling energy moving through you rather than trying to control it, you begin to recognize that the word that best describes this movement of light is Love. There is great truth in the song title – Love Makes the World Go ‘Round. It not only makes it go around, but it permeates absolutely everything.
Brian Swimme, Evolutionary Philosopher and Co-Collaborator of the documentary film, “Journey of the Universe,” calls this essence at the heart of Life ‘allurement.’ This force of attraction can be seen from the very beginning of our universe. The ‘stuff’ that arose out of the Big Bang followed the call of attraction and came together into communities we call atoms. The next step happened when these atoms were drawn together into communities called molecules. Then molecules were so attracted to one another they came together into communities called cells, and then cells followed the call of allurement and became multi-cell beings.
This urge to connect at the heart of Life is all about Love. The great mystics of the world have all agreed that when you come out of your struggling mind, what you recognize and fully become is Love. And it is this Love, this allurement, this urge to connect, that brings all things together, whether it is subatomic particles or human beings or solar systems. What would happen if you recognized that the Love you long for is right here, right now? What would happen if you realized that Love is not something you need to find – it is who you already are?
Look out at the world and see this dance of form that has been going on for eons – things arising and passing away – mosquitoes, dinosaurs, your great grandparents, mountains and even stars. Everything in this dance of Life appears and then eventually disappears. This constant movement of Life extends all the way out to the dance of galaxies and all the way within to electrons dancing around the nucleus of every single atom of your body. But that is only half of it. All of this movement arises out of a vast stillness, a stillness that births all the varied forms of Life.
This stillness is also within you. Eckhart Tolle, author of The Power of Now says, “Your innermost sense of self, of who you are, is inseparable from stillness.” Yet most people know nothing of this stillness within. They have been conditioned not to listen. Instead they are so busy running here and there that it is almost impossible for them to simply become quiet, allowing their thoughts to settle, so that they can recognize this stillness and be nourished by its presence. It is possible, even in the midst of a busy life, to rest in stillness which opens you up to a deep and passionate listening to Life.
As you drink in these five qualities that are at the core of who you truly are, it is important to recognize that they are here with you right now! You may not notice them, but they are always with you no matter what is happening in your life. As you see through your struggling mind, you begin not only to recognize these qualities, but also live from them, and you are then able to partner with the wisdom of Life.
About the Author
Mary O’Malley is an author, speaker, group facilitator and counselor in Kirkland, Washington. In the early 1970’s, a powerful awakening set Mary on the path to changing her whole relationship with the challenges of life, freeing herself from a lifelong struggle with darkness.
Since that time, Mary has taught extensively throughout the United States, Canada and Denmark. She is an inspirational speaker who leads retreats that transform people’s lives, provides individual counseling, and offers ongoing groups where people can come together to experience the miracle of Awakening.
Her strengths lie in her ability to be fully present in the moment, integrating information, technique and insight with simplicity and compassion.
Her books are as follows:
- What’s In the Way IS the Way: Moving Beyond Your Struggle into the Joy of Being Fully Alive
- The Gift of Our Compulsions: A Revolutionary Approach to Self-Acceptance and Healing
- Belonging to Life: The Journey of Awakening
- The Magical Forest of Aliveness: A Tale of Awakening
Mary is committed to helping people heal their inner wars, so they can become a part of the healing of our planet. She does so by drawing on her own life experience to facilitate healing and awakening in a compassionate and powerful way.