Tag Archives: awareness

Living Christ – Blessed Gift

Standard

Nativity

In February of this year I was gifted with an amazing spiritual opportunity while in deep meditation, the opportunity to experience living as Spirit. During meditation I found myself surrounded by others. I was one of  many energies existing as a unique pattern, yet connected and intertwined having no means, method or desire to be separate. We, our “bodies” consisted of colors, vivid, alive, moving and flowing, all character, each unique pattern was clothed in differing fluid colored hues. The air was alive with excited conversation, which was transmitted as thought yet even thought had a color and sound of sorts. We were planning a path of events that would occur in the physical world. There was a joyful sense of knowing in the midst of this natural beauty and being. There were trees and nature, but nature was aware and also lived as part of the Spirit Collective. It was…is an interwoven existence of what can only be called great love, the most encompassing love, which was our state of being. In this “place” we are Creators. I exist as my Creator, or rather I am the Creator of my “self,” the body manifest on Earth. You exist there as the Creator of your self. I am, you are as you exist physically on Earth only with no physical form. In this place, there is nothing but Love, no strife, no pain, no opposites.

During that time, I understood and was completely aware that earthly reality provided the opportunity for individualization, individual creativity and autonomy, something we cannot experience as part of the Collective Spirit. Yet even at the core of this earthly individualization, there is a creative story and interweaving of all personalities that is agreed upon in the purest form before it manifests on the Earth. We create our physical world. Toward the end of my meditative experience, finished with our discussion, we agreed it was time for me to return. Me, my self as a conscious representation of the Whole, returned to the physical. I felt acceleration, a traveling along a thread of energy and was completely aware that I was returning – still I know with conviction I am always connected to the Whole and need not fear life.

Now, back in the physical rising out of meditation I open my eyes and feel a sadness and yearning because of the knowledge and awareness. I feel homesick, but have a heightened sense of purpose and know that you dear reader are the reason I write.

Each December 25th we celebrate the birth of the living Christ, a spiritual being who lived among man completely connected and with total awareness of both the physical and the Spiritual Whole, the Father, God, Love. He lived as an aware spiritual being, meant to be born, to live as physical, to die and to rise again in order to teach humanity through living example that we are more than this. God manifested as flesh.

How he must have longed to be at “home,” part of the all-encompassing Collective Love rather than living among the ignorance of man. He sacrificed with full knowledge so that we might KNOW. How blessed we are to understand the Christmas gift.

“I therefore…urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, …Ephesians 4:1-32 ESV

We are more than this…

Hugging for Real…tis’ the Season

Standard

snoopy-hug 

The holiday’s are here and so is the running about I better get this done now or I’m not going to have what I need done for Christmas/New Years stress. Did you keep up with that sentence? Now is the time to remember to slow your pace, keep it at a comfortable, manageable level and live the joy of the season. Live the joy of the season.

No it’s not a typo I repeated it twice and I’ll repeat it again…Live the joy of the season. In the midst of the busy-ness a good meditation to bring you back to joy in the moment, at any moment is to hug a loved one, a friend, or a colleague Thich Nhat Hanh’s “Hugging Meditation” is a perfect mindful practice during the season to bring you back to the moment, sharing and feeling joy:

“Hugging is a beautiful Western custom and we from the East would like to contribute the practice of conscious breathing to it. When you hold a child in your arms, or hug your mother, or your husband, or your friend, if you breathe in and out three times, your happiness will be multiplied at least tenfold…The two of you really exist in that moment. It may be one of the best moments in your life…Suppose your daughter comes and presents herself to you. If you are not really there — if you are thinking of the past, worrying about the future, or possessed by anger or fear — the child, although standing in front of you, will not exist to you. She is like a ghost, and you may be like a ghost also. If you want to be with her, you have to return to the present moment. Breathing consciously, uniting body and mind, you make yourself into a real person again. When you become a real person, your daughter becomes real also. She is a wonderous presence, and a real encounter with life is possible at that moment. If you hold her in your arms and breathe, you will awaken to the preciousness of your loved one and life is.” Peace in Every Step, pp. 85 – 86

Happy Holiday’s! We are more than this…

Listen Once Again

Standard

Sea of Serenity

 

This morning while driving to the office, I found myself pondering doing so much for others and so little in the way of caring for myself. Y’all know what I preach…practice self-nurtuting, practice living mindfully, practice meditation, practice being one-with-Spirit. And really I do most of this, but when super busy and that autopiolot takes over, I lose making those daily conscious decisions that will ensure I’m taking care of me throughout the day.

Parenting, working full-time, being a caring friend to those I hold so dear, I find there is no second thought given to the needs presented before me, in fact no thought. I’m a natural-born nurturer through and through as are many of my friends (you know who you are). If this blog post caught your eye, you are probably a caretaker who walks with love and compassion for all others with little attention given to your own needs. Be sure of this…Spirit walks with you in every step and you are blessed.

There can be no doubt that in order to continue walking in love and compassion, we must also care for and nurture ourselves, for if we push the limits of our own capacity there will most likely be a wake-up call in store. Stress turns into all kinds of things, colds, headaches, body pain, sleeplessness, irritability, anger. Catch yourself before you fall, take care of you, especially if you intend to keep being that blessed presence in the lives of others. With the Holidays upon us it’s important that we get back on track. Today I offer a portion of the poem, “a sense of her feelings,” from Judith Duerk’s book Circle of Stones. The author speaks to learned behaviors cultivated in women and the need for us to listen to our own needs. Although the words speak of the feminine, this can most certainly be applied to men as well. I personally know several men who are caretakers through and through, these words must also speak to you:

“Woman has learned to ignore her own feeling needs, learned to be a ‘good sport’ hurrying along in a pressure-filled, production-oriented life. She has learned to brush her feelings aside as she pushes ahead for university honors, to pack them out of her briefcase as she heads, in a three-piece suit into the professional and political realm.

But somewhere, deep inside, is the image of a woman seated alone, in a beehive tomb, within the earth, weeping.

What if woman allowed herself to listen once again to her own sensitivities? What if she allowed herself to trust what her tears are trying to tell her?

No…not this way…No…your life has no meaning lived this way. No…No…Slow down. Rest. Fill the kettle slowly. Listen! as the water in its slender stream flows down to fill the waiting kettle.”

Honor yourself with self-nurturing. Listen and fill the kettle slowly. We are more than this…

“Look into Your Hand”

Standard

A World in Your Hand by NixenG

My parents have both transitioned to Spirit. I miss them, especially my mom. This past Thanksgiving was the sixth year anniversary of her passing. She was our comforter, always there ready to listen and provide encouragement. In his book Peace in Every Step, author and spiritual leader Thich Nhat Hanh tells a story about looking “into your hand” to see those you miss. A mindful practice that brings us to knowing we are still connected to those we love and have gone before us.

Look into Your Hand

“I have a friend who is an artist. Before he left Vietnam forty years ago, his mother held his hand and told him, ‘Whenever you miss me, look into your hand, and you will see me immediately…’ Over the years, my friend looked into his hand many times. The presence of his mother is not just genetic. Her spirit, her hopes, and her life are also in him. When he looks into his hand, he can see thousands of generations before him and thousands of generations after him. He can see that he exists not only in the evolutionary tree branching along the axis of time, but also in the network of interdependent relations. He told me that he never feels lonely.” pp. 78-79

Gazing into my hand, studying the creases and lines, I remember sitting in the grass with mom searching for four-leaf clovers, picking raspberries along the river by grandma’s house and the rose she handed me on my 16th birthday. I remember putting up jars and jars of tomatoes in the summer and packing lunches with her in the kitchen for all us kids so we could go down to the lake to hang out for the day. It all comes back and suddenly, she’s with me again and I don’t miss her so much. She’s right here with me. Practice mindful moments, look into your hand. We are more than this…

Breathe Through the Ring

Standard

mindful connection

How do you feel about your phone? About the ability to get texts, phone calls and Internet access anywhere and for anyone to contact you at anytime? I love technology, everything about it except its magic attraction is always in my face. Today while driving in our cars we’re talking to the air and no one cares, no one looks twice because they know we’re on the phone. (I like this because I can sing to my heart’s content and just look like I’m talking wildly, maybe I should gesture too to make it more realistic. Ha!)

It’s hard for me to not answer the phone or a text. I feel compelled to be there, to be available “just in case anything comes up.” It used to be we had cell phones in our glove compartments (just as big too) that we used only for emergencies, now everything is important. Or is it… Thich Nhat Hanh has this to say about the telephone in his book “Peace in Every Step:”

“The telephone is very convenient, but we can be tyrannized by it. We may find its ring disturbing or feel interrupted by too many calls…The telephone bell creates in us a kind of vibration, and maybe some anxiety: “Who is calling? Is it good or bad news?” Yet some force in us pulls us to the phone, and we cannot resist. We are victims of our own telephone.”

Now mind you this was written in 1991. We didn’t have all the phone technology then that we have now. We can do so much more in so many ways, in so many places. Ah, and here’s the interesting thing, he offers a “telephone meditation:”

“I recommend that the next time you hear the phone ring, just stay where you are, breathe in and out consciously, smile to yourself and recite this verse: ‘Listen, listen. This wonderful sound brings me back to my true self.’ When the bell rings for the second time, you can repeat the verse, and your smile will be even more solid. When you smile, the muscles of your face relax, and your tension quickly vanishes. You can afford to practice breathing and smiling like this, because if the person calling has something important to say, she [he] will certainly wait for at least three rings…You are your own master. You know that you are smiling not only for you own sake, but also for the sake of the other person. If you are irritated or angry, the other person will receive your negativity.  But because you have been breathing consciously and smiling, you are dwelling in mindfulness, and you pick up the phone, how fortunate for the person calling you!” pp. 29-30

A totally, so different approach to answering your phone. In fact, why not broaden this a little bit and extend it to answering texts or e-mail’s you’ve received on your phone? Breathing in you remember you are interconnected with all to the Whole, part of Spirit, breathing out you smile, mindful of the moment, then calmly with a smile you answer or text, “Hello.”  We are more than this…

“What’s Not Wrong?”

Standard

peace-filled

Today between tasks I stood for a moment looking out the window wishing, longing for peace and quiet. But the family needs me. The younger, the older and the in-betweeners. They still need me. I work to keep us housed, fed and educated. No one tells us when we’re young what it will take to raise a family and even if they had, really would we have listened? We meet, fall in love, dream big and dive full force into it all, nothing can stop us when we’re dreaming!

I wouldn’t change what life’s path has brought me. Except, I think I might have saved more so that when I reached 50 I might have had enough money to say, “I’m done working, I’m going to contemplate the nature of the universe.” I didn’t. So now I long for a day of solitude here and there without work or children. The free time I have is gobbled up with my job, school activities, homework, resume work for the older creatures and listening ears for all whenever there’s a need.

As I scan these words, I see opportunity. In the early 90’s I read Thich Nhat Hanh’s book “Peace Is Every Step,” an excellent book about living mindfully in everyday life during everyday activities. Knowing I need continue my role as both parent and breadwinner I resurrected some of my favorites of the very applicable daily practices in his book. Through the month of December, I’ll share a daily mindfulness activity with you. Maybe by New Year’s Day we’ll all have a little more peace in our steps and lives.

My all time favorite practice from the book is “What’s Not Wrong,” which I share a portion of below:

“We often ask, ‘What’s wrong?’ Doing so, we invite painful seeds of sorrow to come up and manifest. We feel suffering, anger and depression and produce more such seeds. We would be much happier if we tried to stay in touch with the healthy, joyful seeds inside of us and around us. We should learn to ask, ‘What’s not wrong?’ and be in touch with that. There are so many elements in the world and within our bodies, feelings, perceptions, and consciousness that are wholesome, refreshing, and healing. If we block ourselves, if we stay in the prison of our sorrow, we will not be in touch with these healing elements…Life is filled with many wonders, like the blue sky, the sunshine, the eyes of a baby…Awareness of the precious elements of happiness is itself the practice of right mindfulness. Elements like these are within us and all around us. In each second of our lives we can enjoy them.”  pp.77-78

So ask yourself, “What’s not wrong?” Appreciate the flocks of birds gathering to fly off for the winter, the laughter of your colleagues over lunch, sunshine on your face, being able to move from one breath to the next without effort. Start your practice today, include it every time you see something wonderful and ask the question again, “What’s not wrong?” I look forward to hearing from you. We are more than this…

Paint the Day

Standard

One morning as my teenage son and I were leaving for school, he looked up at the monotone grey clouds and said, “Someone forgot to paint the sky this morning.” Wow, I thought. What a simple and awesome  statement. Glancing up at the canvas of clouds I thought he’s right, we can paint the day however we wish, it’s just there presenting itself in all its simplicity.

How do we paint the days? I know that sometimes I make things so complicated my head spins. Too many projects all open at the same time, the revolving office door, to-do lists, and home-life responsibilities that consume me. It really doesn’t have to be that way. I am a multitasker who welcomes challenge. Still, I do have the choice to paint the day in simplicity. How would that look?

First I would stop multitasking. I can hear you now, but wait! Aren’t you a craving multitasker with the ability to work in a fast-paced, multi-faceted job? Ah, true that but simplifying is appealing. What if I were to take the day down a notch? What if I prioritize each project according to deadline, shut my door at times, well at least to a crack, and concentrate on just one thing at a time, well that would certainly simplify AND provide greater accuracy (to which yes I admit mistakes have occurred, sadly yes).

Family member needs might be approached in the same manner. Helping my oldest with his resume needn’t be upon demand. How about scheduling time instead of being on 24/7. (Ok, I know I’m a mom, but I do have limitations!) Or when the middle daughter wants to sit and spill her guts just because she can and I’m sitting here writing, looking like I’m just playing on the computer. “How about coffee tomorrow honey? We’ll get a favorite latte and sit at the coffee shop.” Oh yeeeeaaah!

A conversation with a colleague about this very thing triggered movement. I was talking about the many tasks and detailed projects, she agreed too many details, then went on to say, “My hope is to simplify.” That one sentence did it.

“Simplifying would be fabulous. Totally and completely fabulous.” I responded thinking and I know how to do that, now I just have act. With a few last words from her I was hooked into making a change. She said, “I look forward to your next blog on the subject.”

You got me sister! Totally. And here it is. Paint the canvas of your day with simplicity. Choose to focus on the task at hand and leave the frantic multitasking to the adrenaline seekers. Take it down a notch, prioritize and remember you are just one person and that it’s O.K. to move from one task at hand to the next.  Addressing one challenge at a time, be it in the workplace or in the personal arena, gives you the opportunity to meet each challenge and do it well. (Thank you my friend!) We are more than this…

“Our life is frittered away by detail…simplify, simplify, simplify!” ~ Henry David Thoreau