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Much love, and Namaste...

Columbia River Gorge

Exult Road is here to uplift and celebrate life, and you. 

Publishing, Writing, Consulting

Jill L. Cooper

Jill L. Cooper is a poet and writer. Her writing has appeared in print literary journals, The Raven ChroniclesThe Floating Bridge ReviewShark Reef Literary Magazine, as well as online magazines, Rewire MeThe Rebelle Society, HIV Here & Now, and others. Cooper’s poetry has been anthologized in Silent Applause of Butterflies (Columbia Center for the Arts, 2014), Pontoon (Floating Bridge, 2015), Delirious—A Tribute to Prince (Night Ballet Press, 2016), and in I Only Wanted to See You Laughing (Yellow Chair Review, 2016), and others. She was the creator and editor of The Yes Book (Exult Road, 2014). Cooper has served as the Executive Director of a Buddhist publishing house, and as a consultant to publishers, and as an author coach. She is currently working on a book-length collection of prose poetry, and on a collection of lyrical essays. Cooper lives in the beautiful Palouse region of Washington state. In all her work, she intends to affirm and celebrate existence. To contact her, write to jillcooper11 at gmail dot com. 

Increasing the Capacity for Beauty.

Jill Cooper

Beauty, the world seemed to say. And as if to prove it (scientifically) wherever he looked at the houses, at the railings, at the antelopes stretching over the palings, beauty sprang instantly. To watch a leaf quivering in the rush of air was an exquisite joy. Up in the sky swallows swooping, swerving, flinging themselves in and out, round and round, yet always with perfect control as if elastics held them; and the flies rising and falling; and the sun spotting now this leaf, now that, in mockery, dazzling it with soft gold in pure good temper; and now again some chime (it might be a motor horn) tinkling divinely on the grass stalks—all of this, calm and reasonable as it was, made out of ordinary things as it was, was the truth now; beauty, that was the truth now. Beauty was everywhere.
— Virginia Wolfe

If you read this blog, you know that I practice daily gratitude, and dedicate my life to appreciation. I rave about what's wonderful in life, what's to love. I do this because it feels so good, because the world has enough complaints, because it brings more of what I appreciate into my life, and ripples out around me. 

I recommend it to anyone. For me, the power of appreciation is so eye-opening and transformative that it's changed from a morning ritual, to a lifestyle. Try it? Give yourself a half an hour to just do nothing but appreciate. Get revved up. It can be for anything - running water, the thousands of people involved in stocking your refrigerator, the sky, our rolling, wonderful earth, your breath, love, the possibility for change. Anything. It's hard not to feel good when filled with appreciation, and feeling good begets more feeling good.

Writer Esther Hicks calls it a "rampage of appreciation." Teacher and author Lola Jones calls it "raving." I call it relishing. 

I  am relishing about beauty today! When I first moved from glorious Seattle to the stunning natural beauty of the river gorge in the mountains where I live, I noticed that my capacity for so much natural beauty was limited. I could only "stand" so much looking at the noble mountains and luscious green forests before I stopped being able to even see it. 

Beauty was overwhelming then. I half-jokingly asked a very effective question, "How will I increase my capacity for all this beauty?" The universe heard. From that day on, beauty in all forms floods my life, and softly carves out my capacity to receive, see, accept, create, and revel with more and more beauty. 

Now, I can drink in the mountain air and natural beauty around me easily. And, now I seem to be a magnet for beauty: beautiful souls, beautiful animals, beautiful relationships, beautiful emotions, beautiful food, beautiful health, beautiful (sometimes non-habitual) movements, a beautiful home, beautiful thoughts, beautiful writing projects, beautiful open doors, beautiful truth, and daily more and more beautiful, wanted feelings. This is expansion of consciousness, I realized

I expanded my capacity for Beauty, with the lightest intent, and like a vacuum, the new and expanding space fills quickly and overflows with lots of evidence, endless proof of the glory of Beauty. Not just aesthetic or physical beauty, but all beauty. Beauty brings surprises with it. For me, it's brought peace. Love is beautiful. Simple and profound, beauty is a strong horse pulling a mighty cart of goodness and truth. Invited, beauty comes, she stays, and she brings friends. 

You might imagine, the meaning of the word has become rich and subtle to me, opening my eyes to the beauty in details everywhere, from an orange rind in the sun on the counter, to fog, to the scent of soil, to my own softness and strength, to understanding choice, to the extraordinary beauty of guided action - knowing when to do what and how, free of worry - and trusting daily the perfect beautiful sublime choice to flow with everything as it is flowing into place always!

The Divine is beautiful. 

With my love,