ah its the beginning of my fourth day of fasting. those i’ve spoken to with experience in this practice say the third day is the craziest, after the first two are hard. i have been drinking only the master cleanse, and one bowl of soup broth near the end of the day. i feel very clearheaded and calm now – by the end of the second day i was feeling manic, physically stressed, you know – tired but unable to sleep.

but now i just feel very clear and this…clean sense of energy. i have a heightened awareness of emptyness, aloneness, self in the midst of many and then the threads that connect me to others. to be doing such a fast without people around you also fasting is odd, as the physical manifestations of the fast are not unlike tripping. i see shadows all about, i feel a lot of focus on each sensation, bright lights, odd smells, but mostly colors. the colors of everything are so much more vibrant.

i had to drive to philly and back yesterday with all of this awareness and an angel was sent with me in the form of my coworker celeste, who kept me talking, alert, kept the good music bumping and then, on the way back, made me stop for some soup and get that warm energy for the drive through the pouring rain and darkness. we went to the 2nd annual pa hip-hop convention, organized by jay woodson. the rain kept the turn-out low, but the speakers and trainers were great and we got to see rays of hope perform. rays of hope is a group that works with young folks, like 6-14 i think, who learn to rap, sing and dance. they were amazing and professional and their rhymes were revolutionary and political and smart. they will perform anywhere for free, try and find them, try and see them.

in meditating this morning, one major thing that comes to me from leonard peltier’s story: when surrounded and attacked by armed federal agents, with apparently no way out, leonard placed the needs and safety of his people before his own. he had faith that cut through his fear, and they found a miracle path. this is moving me to this heady hopeful place, because while all humans may be possible of the greatest wrongs against each other and the planet…but then we must all be capable of the greatest bravery and strength and humility. we must each have the capacity to be brave when it matters, and to love each other and protect each other as manifestations of god, rather than protecting only ourselves and our life paths as manifestations of ego.

i got to write leonard a message which will be delivered with other messages from the fasters directly to him. it was hard to find the words. but i feel him, i feel what it means to love your people that much, to want only fair and righteous dealings between fate and your beloveds.

i am surrounded by people who i love – deliriously. they are my people. i feel very aware when i am with them that i want to place them on pedestals. so much of how i’ve interacted in groups has been attention grabbing, always with the side commentary, very ‘look mom i’m funny.’ its always been difficult for me to be still and quiet and absorb in a group setting. my thought is that i want to hear and watch these people, see what happens in my life if i take up a bit less space and listen more, contemplate my words so that they come from a space of love and kindness towards those i adore, rather than from my own need to garner attention and laughter.

now i am going to go walk and possibly to church after that. there’s supposed to be a good non-denominational service nearby. oh and for well wishes to you, i learned this yesterday from a beautiful muslim man who lives in england: ramadan mubarek! (and ibrahim taught me the response is ramadan kareem!)