Monthly Archives: February 2013

We’re In This Together

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Forest Light

How fortunate we are to have the ability to ask for guidance and receive answers. I’ve been working with a new process that involves observing symbols that rise to the forefront of mind while sitting in meditation. The practice includes recording each of the symbols received, describing them in writing, along with any important insights received. In one very revealing meditation, I started choosing symbols from previous dreams and meditations pulling from what I knew and felt comfortable with, then immediately realized it didn’t feel right. I had to let go of the old and let something else surface. It was there, I could feel it waiting. Within moments of letting go, a forest scene appeared.

I had been here before years ago in meditation, a wooded area with a stream rushing nearby, this scene was my symbol. A meditative event was my symbol, something completely unexpected. I’ve always had an object or shape, sometimes a sound. The scene unfolded,  translucent body kneeling on the forest floor, shining in the speckled sunlight streaming through the trees, she… I was vulnerable, sensitive, loving. Now, we blended, existing in duality physical and spiritual, we sat feeling the events of past and present, even those that may unfold. And in those moments there was instant realization that we embraced all experience. Those that are considered positive, as well as those that are considered negative. Experience wrapped around us layer upon layer and the message? Experience builds strength and courage. We grow not only in human character but in Spiritual character as well.

During this meditation I felt acceptance of all that has been, that which is now occurring and all of that which may unfold. I, as both spiritual and physical, was embraced by an all-encompassing Love and knew that all is as it should be, no matter how it may appear. We dear reader are provided an opportunity to experience in every way, with physical senses, with emotion and feeling, with freedom, intellect and creativity of thought. This means experiencing all that comes along with living on the Earth as human. This is our workshop for the Spirit. This is our place to develop richness and strength of character. The meditative experience provided clear understanding that I have come to be who I am as a result of each sensed moment, emotion, feeling and thought. Each interaction and event that occurs over the course of a day, week, month, over the course of a lifetime is meant to provide us with love, joy, pain, sadness, with laughter, with conflicts or fear… immersed in diverse richness we experience Life.

Collectively as components of Spirit, we share these strengths. Embrace Life fully, hold yourself and others in compassion as we move through each experience, because we are all in this together! Spiritual beings living a physical existence, we are called to uplift, support, and walk with each other on these adventures. When your colleague stumbles, is fearful, in pain, needs your hand, take it. When you are troubled, suffering, feel alone, reach out! And share joys as well, celebrate milestones, rejoice when there are successes, join together and shout, “We are more than what is seen, we are more than this!”

“May the stream of my love, in all its depth and fullness, flow unceasingly from me to thee. May no winds of impatience blow upon its waters, may no ripple of unkindness mar its surface, may no storm of hostility disturb its depths, and may no sediment  of deception choke its course. Rather, may the joy I share with you be unrestrained, may my sorrow with you know no bitterness, and may the streams of both our lovings be absorbed in the never-ending ocean of God’s grace.”                                                       ~ Rev. Dr. Noel Frederick McInnis

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Practice Appreciation

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Little-things-Happiness-Quote

Earlier this week a colleague stopped in my office, coat on and keys in hand she said, “I’m heading out to run errands and thought I’d pick up your favorite Starbucks coffee. Would you write it down for me, cause’ I’ll never remember it.”  Surprised, I asked what the occasion was. “Nothing really, just a little something I know I can do that will brighten your day. It’s my way of showing I appreciate all you do.” Wow. How cool is that? Of course I’m like, no, no you don’t have to, really it’s ok. In the end I just gave her my decaf-tall-one-and-a-half pump soy mocha order, a big hug and decided to just accept and experience the warm fuzzies.

My colleagues actions and a story I’d recently read by Rev. Dr. Noel Frederick McInnis inspired me to write this post. Dr. McInnis shares:

“Because appreciation of others’ services is a value that so many persons fail to honor fully, a professor ended his midterm exam with the question, ‘What is the first name of the woman who cleans our classroom?’ When asked how this question was pertinent, he replied, ‘During your life you will meet many persons whose value deserves your caring attention, even if all you do is smile and say hello.'”

We are individual representations of Spirit made manifest on the Earth. Here we are provided the opportunity to be grateful for all that is presented before us each new day, the challenges, learning lessons, abundance, diverse personalities and most of all the opportunity to show appreciation for these diverse experiences and people walking along with us on our life paths. Reverend McInnis continues with:

“As any real estate agent or property assessor will tell you, the word appreciation means ‘increase of value.’ Thus when one receives another’s appreciation, one’s sense of self-evaluation is increased. And given life’s mirroring of our thoughts, our own sense of self-valuation also is correspondingly increased as we extend our appreciation others.” Feb. SOM p. 42

A daily practice modeled by my mother, I make the effort to recognize each person I may come in contact with over the course of a day, just stopping for a moment or two to inquire after a family member or activity I know they might participate in, sometimes to thank them for help they provided earlier in the week or that day. This practice doesn’t take all that long and connects us as Spirit one to another. Throughout the years my mother faithfully wrote in my birthday or Christmas cards, “To my joy and comfort, love you, Mom.” She was showing her appreciation.

Honestly, I didn’t get it. Where had I provided joy and comfort? I never asked and she never said. Only recently did I finally understand. After school every day I’d walk in and ask, “How was your day?” This was something I had learned from her. She often asked us kids about our days events, a neighbor about her children or inquired about a work colleague’s parent. She went out of her way to connect with others. Something special I remember growing up…at night before going to bed, she and I would sit and read together at the kitchen table over a cup of tea, sometimes taking time between chapters to share things on our mind. We were connected, appreciative of both each other and these quiet moments together. It brought both of us joy and comfort. Now I get it.

Who do you walk alongside with each day that you can offer joy and comfort with words of appreciation or recognition? How can you incorporate this as a mindful practice into day-to-day living? We are more than this…

“There is no such thing as a simple act of compassion or an inconsequential act of service. Everything we do for another person has infinite consequences.”   ~ Caroline Myss

And All Is Well

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earth-angel-josephine-wall

Earth Angel by Josephine Wall

 

A member of the community I work for passed away last week. It’s a small community where each member has known the other for years and years… Close-knit and interwoven, there is a hole now where she once was. Ever faithful, loving and kind, she is missed by all.

Living consciously as both Spirit and physical being, I know with conviction that only her body is gone. She lives on, a being unique in character who now flows as one with Spirit, God, all-encompassing Love. My intuitive and clairaudient gifts kicked in the morning she died.  I was hanging laundry and sensed she had passed. I wondered if I should call my colleagues. I didn’t, instead I left to run errands. Jumping out of the car at the store I felt her with me and an encompassing, exuberant joy, “Tell them I am pain-free and happy,” I heard inwardly.  No way, I thought back to her. I’m emotionally involved in this. I’m not saying a word. With inner speak I said, “I’ll tell you what, if you really have something you’d like me to pass on, provide a dream, something someone will get and understand.”

That evening I saw a movie with a friend, cleaned up the kitchen and hit the pillows early. And yes, my request was provided. In the dream, I found myself hovering over the chapel where the wake and funeral were taking place for the woman who had died. In flowing energy form, I was with the woman who had died and a group of others who were accompanying us. There was no time so all seemed to be happening at once, the preparations, wake and funeral, a very odd concept when not in the dream or meditative state.

The wake was beautiful and wonderfully attended and the funeral very nicely done. Everything ran very smoothly. As we observed there were thoughts exchanged, speech was not necessary, “You see all is well,”  I was told. Then, I was instructed to let someone in particular know that she needn’t be anxious to get the wake and funeral details done immediately, that she should complete the other things needing attention first and then get to the business of the wake and funeral. Because you see, “it was all going to be fine anyway so what was the use of worrying, why bother fretting over it?”

I lingered with the group for what seemed like a long time and was shown other events that would unfold over the next short period of time. And drat! Those are the pieces I wanted to remember and couldn’t. I brought back only the most vivid of  images and knew I had to pass on the message. I sent a quick text to the intended party and went about getting the work day started. Once I arrived at the office and was settled in, I checked e-mail and sure enough, there was a notice letting us know she had passed away the morning of the previous day.

Like everyone else I am sad she’s no longer with us, but I know with every ounce of my being that she lives on. What stays with me most from the time in the dream state with these loving souls are the moments of great joy and the desire to reassure the living that “all is well and not to fret.”   My spiritual experiences and life journey have brought me to this dual existence where physical and spiritual energy operate simultaneously.  I feel blessed and fortunate to have been provided with such gifts. What dear reader would help you to know that we are more than this?”

“We are participants in a vast communion of being, and if we open ourselves to its guidance, we can learn anew how to live in this great and gracious community of truth.” ~ Parker Palmer