Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Filling Up With a Gold Sun

Filling up with a gold sun is a simple tool that I use often to reset my body’s vibration to my own truth. It is yet another way to take advantage of the connection between the mind and the body, and also of the effect that our intention has on our life experience.

In the middle of just about anything, I can stop and fill up with a gold sun. For me, gold represents the vibration of God’s love expressing in all things. In filling myself with golden light I am making a conscious choice to align my body with what is highest within me.

What we think, our bodies respond to as if it is real. This happens on a moment-to-moment basis, and is the reason why our thoughts have such a dramatic effect on our physical well-being. So as I picture in my mind the color gold enfusing every cell in my body, my body responds by relaxing into an awareness of peace, remembering that all is well and there is nothing my body needs to work against.

Also, because what we expect tends to show up in how our lives play out, our clear intention to align our bodies with awareness of God consciousness at work in all things allows that to be what we ultimately call to ourselves, and experience in our lives.

To fill up with a gold sun:

1. Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths, and quiet your thoughts as much as possible.
2. In your mind’s eye, picture a large, bright, shining gold sun up above your head.
3. Acknowledge your intention that the color gold represents the truth of God consciousness in all things.
4. Watch in your mind’s eye as the gold sun comes in through the top of your head and cascades down through your body, bringing every cell of your body to gold.

This simple and powerful tool helps us remember that there really is no limit to what we can create as unbounded spirit having a divine in-the-body experience!

May this tool be a blessing. . .

Friday, August 27, 2010

It's Just Energy

Choosing to remember that it's just energy has saved my biscuit countless times.  Every single thing that happens in life is at its core an energy vibration that is moving through our personal space.  The choices that we make about which of those energies we attend to, and which we release, very much create our life experience.

One important way that I use the tool of "it's just energy" is in my relationship with my husband.  There are times in our very harmonious partnership when we get really annoyed at each other.  Thank Goodness for experience, that most effective teacher, from which we have both learned that when we are fighting, it's rarely about us.  When we are in conflict, it doesn't reflect at all on the amount of love, commitment or happiness we experience together.  It's a reflection of how much we're being caught up in the energies around us.

We have learned over time that when one of us can remember that simple truth, and then remind the other, we can step back, take a deep breath, and wait for the flurry to pass.  It's not about us.  We may be stressed over something that happened at work, or stirred up by something unresolved from the past, or many other things, making us more grouchy or sensitive.  But grouchy and sensitive are temporary states of affairs.  They are vibrations passing by, and not the truth of us.  We have agreed to believe in the face of whatever is passing by that our relationship is sacred, and our belief makes it so.

Someone once told me that it's all energy mechanics, and I'm starting to understand the truth of that.  In seeing a situation as the fleeting and mutable vibration that it is, rather than a solid thing that we are forced to endure for as long as it chooses to stick around, we are able to choose to be proactive rather than reactive in our response to it. We can manage it rather than let it control our experience.

How do we manage the energies that we encounter in our lives, and turn them to our good?  Meditation is one way, but there are many others.  Prayer, affirmations, turning it over to the God within us, or choosing to see God within another; probably all of the tools discussed in this blog and elsewhere help us change the energy.  Anything that helps us take a step up from the problem, and connect with our higher truth, allows us to remember that we are unlimited creators of our life's divine melody.

May this tool be a blessing. . .

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Sympathy vs. Empathy

I’m finding a lot of help lately in remembering to be more empathetic than sympathetic in my interactions with others. The subtle but important difference in the intent that these two words convey impacts how I feel, how much help I can be to others, and how centered in my own truth I am able to be. For me, responding with empathy is infinitely more healthy and productive.

A number of my family members and friends, like so many others in the world, are facing big challenges in their lives. I help them as much as I can, but there is only so much that I can do, and I feel sad about it. I have realized that my sadness doesn’t help them, and it certainly doesn’t help me. My husband reminded me yesterday about empathy rather than sympathy. Bless him.

Both sympathy and empathy express how we deal with the feelings of others, and there are numerous ways to define both words. I view sympathy as sharing the feelings of another, especially in sorrow or trouble.  I have noticed that people can sympathize with another enough to actually take on their physical symptoms.  Empathy, on the other hand,  is more recognizing or understanding the feelings of another but not sharing in their suffering.

I can, and have, been brought to my knees by sympathy. My truth takes an automatic back seat to how badly I feel about what someone else is going through, and I suffer, and it doesn’t help.  My knee-jerk reaction is to forget my most basic truth, which is that God has it all. I can't always see how, but it's covered, end of story.  I’m not sure where that deeply-heartfelt truth hides when I’m suffering for someone.  I just know that I have to dig it out from behind some very old, pervasive fear.

I believe that all that happens is contained in a divine order so perfect that we can just barely imagine it. Only with faith can we even begin to accept into our hearts the love that designed our being, with all of its ups and downs.

Through all of their struggles and changing circumstances, my loved ones remain who they are, eternal expressions of perfect love. Temporary challenges create the dichotomies that allow us, by first experiencing darkness, to know ourselves as light.

When I choose empathy rather than sympathy, I am able to offer my support in a way that serves the truth of their highest selves, instead of validating perceived limitations. Rather than succumbing to the fear that their circumstances are bigger than they are, I can support them in recognizing their dominion over their own lives.  In empathy I can let them know they are loved and not alone, and capable of more than they may be able to recognize in the moment.

May we all have people in our lives who understand what we're going through but also see the true power that we embody.  And may this tool be a blessing. . .

Monday, August 16, 2010

Knowing Your Power

I read recently that "Our personal power is a direct reflection of our own sense of compassion and inner voice."  This very much describes power as I've experienced it in my own life, but I don't think it's commonly thought of in this way.

Power is found in our connection with what is highest within ourselves.  It is that place that allows us to respond with compassion to all that we encounter, because we know that nothing can diminish the truth of infinite good within us.  When someone treats us less than kindly, we can respond with power in our compassionate and honest communication back to them.  When bad things happen or when circumstances cause us to feel vulnerable, we can respond with power in affirming that we are calling to ourselves an opportunity to know fully the loving and divine order that steers all of life.

People often perceive power as the ability to override others and by sheer will get our own way.  We wrongly believe that in most situations someone wins and someone loses, and so power comes from exerting enough force to win.  But the truth is, power is not born of competition but of communication.  Only in communication can we understand and cooperate, and thereby raise the energy of our interactions with others to one that serves the best and highest for all.  In doing so, we express God within us, and that is true power.  Living as our Godselves is the highest power there is.

We are often taught that power comes from living with a good offense as our best defense, remaining ever-vigilant and always ready to respond to another's jab with an even stronger punch.  Within this dynamic, the over-riding lie that controls communication and prevents any type of harmony is that we are not safe, therefore we have to spend a good deal of energy warding off what other people might do to us.  We end up creating, through our own false belief, our own victimization.

Power has nothing to do with how others perceive us, but with how we stop to hear the quiet voice of spirit within us.  It is not a reaction to what we fear will be invalidated in us, but rather a decision we make again and again to share the truth of who we are, and all that we have to give.

I am reminded of a prayer from Unity: "There is only one presence and one power in the universe and in my life, God the Good."  That, to me, is what power is all about, in our ability to know the truth of our own limitless good.

May this tool be a blessing. . .

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Honoring Your Humanness

Maybe it’s just my own perception, but it seems to me that spiritual philosophy is moving away from placing more importance on acknowledging our spiritual nature, to honoring our human nature. I used to hear more of traditions that sought to overcome the baser aspects of being human, in favor of being continually connected to ourselves as perfect spirit, and above petty human stuff.

From the perspective of spirit, we are of course holy and perfect in all that we create, but what about the perspective of mind and body? Can we honor those as completely as we honor spirit within us?

In our bodies, we are vulnerable. We experience emotions that bowl us over in their intensity. We feel anger and shame and grief, more than we can handle sometimes. We get really sick and feel terrible. We age, and try to adapt as our bodies feel foreign to us in their increasing fragility. We worry and try and then try some more, to find happiness and meaning, and somehow get our lives right.  Sometimes, life is just plain messy.

Who wouldn’t want to transcend this human condition and live in awareness of themselves as pure spirit, as much of the time as is humanly possible?

I wouldn’t. The older I get, the more I’m learning to settle in to the intensity of being human, riding the peaks and valleys of my experience not without fear, but with as much grace as I can muster up. Some days that works better than others.

I’m finding that the intensity is what being human is all about. In truth, I live for the petty human stuff.  I could spend all of my waking hours in quiet contemplation of my spiritual nature, but I know myself well enough to know that divine intelligence would still find big ways to challenge me.

I am here, in this vulnerable body and with this mind that sometimes gets confused or overwhelmed, having a glorious human experience. As my husband says when we’re backpacking, when his knee hurts, “I have a knee,” and he is grateful. I have a knee, and therefore, I am. It’s like that with every part of being human.

I embrace my mind that forgets things a little more than it used to. I have a mind, therefore, I am. I embrace my ankles that take a moment in the morning to lose their stiffness. I have ankles, therefore, I am. And I walk, and am grateful. I embrace every part of this delightful, turbulent, scary, exhilarating, confusing and enlightening ride that is being human. In doing so, I experience as completely as possible, the gift of being me.

Thank you, God, for such a gift.  May this tool be a blessing. . .

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Being Your Best Self

I’m learning that doing my best does not happen passively, but is a very deliberate act. All my life I’ve assumed that I had always been doing my best. I guess I had been, based on my awareness at the time.

Something changes when I approach as many of my moments as possible with a very conscious decision to do my best. It’s difficult to describe it adequately. I end up much happier at the end of the day no matter what happens, because my focus has shifted from reacting to listening to myself and choosing who I want to be. It doesn’t matter what happens in the world around me; what matters is that I am creating my world.

I've noticed that when I’m intentionally choosing to just be my best self in the middle of whatever I encounter, it really doesn’t matter how well I do or how much I accomplish. What I’m aware of is that I designed the moment in the highest energy I was capable of, and that is more than enough, it is a joyful act of creation.

When I’m choosing to be my best self, I am naturally more patient. I am less rushed and more peaceful. I am very present in the moment, and there is ease in what I’m doing. I am happy to be here, in my body, contributing my own unique light to the situation.

I believe that my best changes on different days, depending on many variables. But that doesn’t really matter either. When I consciously choose to do and be my best in any moment, whatever that may be at the time, I am embracing my life's purpose, as I help elevate the energy around me, and create a world of my own making.

May this tool be a blessing. . .

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


I learned about amusement as a spiritual tool at the Berkeley Psychic Institute. It took me awhile to understand the value of it. I still have a hard time remembering to use it as the very helpful tool that it is.

In the middle of our biggest challenges, it’s not easy to be amused. Challenges, by definition, are not amusing. We are much more likely to feel confused, frustrated, hopeless or angry. But consider the benefit of finding just one morsel of amusement in a really difficult situation.

What I notice is that the effect the situation is having on me changes. If I can muster up even one thought about how silly the whole thing is, suddenly its power over me is diminished. It no longer sets my emotional tone. The situation is instantly put in its proper place as a temporary problem. I guess the biggest thing for me about finding a little amusement is that it puts me back in the space of truth, when I remember that I, not the situation, am the creator of my experience.

I have chosen (when I remember) to find a smile within myself for what other people do. More often, I’ve needed to smile at the things that I do, and how I react. A little amusement helps me not take myself, or life in general, too seriously. Oh, to remember this always!

I have tried to find some amusement in the small challenges, and in big ones. As one would expect, it’s easier with the smaller things. But even with the bigger things, our perspective, and our ability to believe that our ultimate good is unfolding, always affect our experience.

We are gloriously human, in an ongoing process of remembering that all is well, we are safe, and God’s good contains all. When I remember that, the world can be a very entertaining place!

May this tool be a blessing. . .

Monday, August 2, 2010

Stepping Off the Path of Least Resistance

My husband and I went backpacking last weekend, up into the high Sierra, to a little alpine lake that we love called Lake Sylvia. For us, it would be a pretty good hike even without the packs. With the packs, I can tell you that I was whining toward the end, and today my legs are as stiff as the pine trees I spent so much time admiring.

It occurred to me, as I was sitting up there at lake’s edge, watching the fish jumping and taunting my husband the fisherman, and allowing myself to gently come back to present time and listen to whatever God had to say to me that morning, how very worth the effort the trek was. It is a beautiful hike in, beyond description really. I don’t think I’ve ever seen as many wildflowers, or butterflies, anywhere. But for as amazing as the hike is, when I started getting tired, I kind of stopped seeing it. My attention shifted to putting one foot in front of the other and just getting there.

I can think of quite a few examples in my life that are like that, when I stepped off the path of least resistance and took the hard road. I didn’t do it specifically because I wanted to take a hard road, because honestly I don’t. I chose the hard road in those instances because I knew I needed to, that’s all. It felt like the right thing to do. In truth, I couldn’t not have taken it.

Stepping off the path of least resistance has brought me the biggest gifts in my life. Deciding that I wanted something, and then sticking with it even though it kicked my rear-end, has given me the life experience that I’m most proud of, and that I’ll remember at the end of my life as what has defined the best in me.

Working my way through college is one example. Another is the direction I’ve taken on my spiritual path. The path I chose has at various times ended friendships, had my family doubting my decision-making ability, and nearly cost me my marriage. I questioned myself plenty during those times when it was hardest, when it felt like what I believed, and where I was headed, had to be wrong because I was out on a limb all by myself, and no one else could see the rightness of it.

I can look back now and validate the good that has come from working my way down the hard road, prompted by a voice that only I could hear. The rewards have always been worthy of the effort, and have become the gifts that I’ve been happiest passing on to others. My heart smiles in thinking about it, because I get to know the grace of heeding the quiet voice of God within me, and I am grateful.

May this tool be a blessing. . .