Philosophy & Belief

Trauma to Triumph-
Facing Demons
Sacred Quest
Self Discovery
Greatest Gift to Yourself...."Getting Real"

We each have systems of interpreting the world, explaining to ourselves the meaning of our life experiences, and the purpose of our existence.  It is absolutely vital to find a sense of meaning in our lives. Without it we are lost, and our very finest human qualities remain quietly untapped.  A meaningful life may seem out of reach for some of us, but that does not have to be so.

Some of us find meaning from the teachings of childhood. Others find their source from spirituality in its various forms. Some of us must renounce those very teachings to find our own significance and understanding.  And for those of us for whom life seemed to have no meaning, we can develop it as we navigate and integrate our life's challenges. This comes from how we handle those challenges and how well we manage ultimately to dignify them.

There is no life so pathetic or empty that one cannot somehow eventually create meaning and purpose if you decide and commit to do so.




Archetypal Dragon

 Gilded scales, resplendent hide

Unerring instinct the inner guide

Jeweled eye with laser sight

Illuminates the blackest night.

You who’ve lived throughout the ages

Possess the wisdom of great sages

What tales of splendor have you to tell?

Beast of magic, creation and might

Graceful bearer of fire and light

Within us all do you indwell?



Who Are We?

With each precious moment we live

what is it that we choose?

Do we take or do we give?

(Life is not to win or lose.)

With each eloquent moment,

not "in the long run" or philosophically

our action speaks, here and now,

of who we are, not wish to be.

Horse of The Stars


What if none of our anguish and torment has any meaning other than simply in terms of physiology and chemistry?

And what if terrible human acts or acts of great kindness are simply influenced by genes, hormones, or chemical and electrical pathways and signals, due to a physiology that is unusual in some fundamental way...from early damage, toxins, disease, genetic mutation or anomoly?

What if the expressions of some of our greatest philosophical and spiritual minds originated solely due to unusual neuronal pathways, perhaps extraordinary or abnormal, perhaps even defective? What if our culture had become influenced by beliefs and ideas that seemed visionary, and yet were actually the twisted expressions of deeply damaged psyches, intelligence and hearts?  These in turn influenced social ideas and trends in what seemed to be shiny new directions, brimming with promise, but ultimately brought pain and suffering to people's hearts and relationships? And the original imprint remained, the echo of that original damaged life so long ago, now deeply rooted in society at large, incorporated into our media and values, bringing us closer to the "American Dream".....perhaps virtually a spiritual and emotional trojan horse. '08

Hearts Embossed

Mute stone walls of bone and sinew

At once, imprisoning, yet empowering.

Within this fortress, the infant trembles, cowering.

Bone brick, mortar flesh

Hence formed this edifice.

Hair and nails,

manes and tails,

cells compelled to record the past.

We are victims of life's battlefields,

Former martyrs, future heroes

the lovelorn.

Our mortality both rose and thorn.

Graffiti etched by the sacrificed,

caveats for those enticed....

but too late.

For each there is a private holocaust,

those loved so brutally,

their hearts embossed.

Like phantom carvings on the skin of trees,

searing wounds,

yet still bearing leaves.

Souls ecstacy, and anguished loss

are what forges those, with hearts embossed. 


There is a mysterious mirror

which decieves with trickery:

It appears as other mirrors,

reflecting what we see.

but if we focus mind and eye,

allowing no deception

(indoctrination so distorts

the mind’s perception.) …

looking not at the illusion

but beyond – to what is true,

then shadows behind the glass

shift clearly into view!

Truth may be just a glimmer

as we close our eyes and look away.

Clarion moments grow quickly dimmer

as perception again is led astray.

Remember, beyond illusion

is a truth not easily viewed

much easier for our vision

to be subjectively skewed.

Our "reality" is a house of mirrors

which doesn't portray what's real,

and developing desired accuity

requires equally determined zeal.






Free Will

Born into a deceptive web, each of us awaits.

Spider or fly, which will be our fate?

Genetics? Environment? What will we become?

And what if badly damaged? Can it ever be undone?

Will we be enticed, pursuing money, pleasure, fame?

Or will we develop true compassion, feeling other people's pain?


Temptation of alluring vices,

Presents us with deep moral crises.

When faced with life's dilemmas, what god do we obey?

The one who judges wisely, or the one who leads astray?

Blindly do we follow in selfishness and shame?

So civilized we are, yet the savage ego goes untamed.

Predator or prey, which do we become?

And what if we discover that both are really one?

Can we look outside the paradox, step outside the trap?

Embark in this terrain with neither authorities nor map?

Can each moment of existence be structured by intent?

To nurture what is noble, not be that twig so bent?


Know inside all hearts are weeping, honor the anguish of those tears.

Kiss each one so gently, not turning from their fears.

Commit to a conscious being, expressed through word and deed.

Respect the human spirit, our deepest human need.

Align with what is sacred, though our most precious loves be lost.

Revere the beauty of each soul, knowing hate exacts great cost.

Gaze boldly into shadows, do not ever look away!

But know if we walk there, even heroes go astray.


When facing deepest darkness, respect the shadow's might,

and hold the lantern highest when facing the blackest night.

Each must keep this vigil, sharing the lantern's weight,

transcending generations of destructiveness and hate.

We can create a conscious path, loving truly from the heart,

and treat each life like what it is: our greatest work of art.       09          

As I put words on paper in my poetry, I sense whether the words express just exactly what the fever is in my heart...what is driving me to write.  If not, I keep searching.for the right word, the right way to express myself that feels like its on target. If I find words that hit the nail on the head and resonate deeply, it is as if I have found a little bit of myself, a piece of all that was lost and buried. Piece by piece I am putting myself together again. I am discovering who I really am. This has been my philosophical quest, finding among all the many paths, which ones will lead me to myself... and then ultimately to a connectedness with you and my own humanity.

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Inner Vision

Inner Vision Art  by Susan Kennedy Stafford
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