It Is What It Is

From “Desiderata” by Max Ehrmann:

 As far as possible without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.

There are times when I reach out to another from a place of sensitivity and compassion only to be met with defensiveness and resentment. In the first moments of this response, I am wounded and begin to wonder how I have wounded this person, often a loved one. I know my intention was clear as I sought to share love so did I express myself that poorly?

Then this quote comes to mind and heart. I keep a wall hanging in my home of “Desiderata” because for fifty years its wisdom has taught me, guided me, and soothed my heart and soul. My truth is that my intention was one of love and I know that I can only be who I am in any given moment. The response probably had absolutely nothing to do with me.

So, I take another line from Max Ehrmann:

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, & remember what peace there may be in silence.

I enter into the silence within, remembering that I can only be at peace with another person if they allow it. When that doesn’t happen, I turn into the peace of my Soul and know that it is what it is. I surrender to the moment and choose healing and peace over woundedness. In these moments of silence and surrender, I find the ability, the love for myself, that allows me to “go placidly amid the noise and haste” produced by the turmoil of another’s heart and mind.

Yes, there is some sadness and I embrace that as part of this oh-so-human experience. In the silence even the sadness feels different and soon dissipates. Life is what it is and each person’s path is unique and sacred. I honor my own path and, in surrendering any need to teach, help, or fix, I honor the paths of others.

Be blessed today for you are Divinely, eternally, unconditionally loved. Namaste.

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Love Is

Love is

God

The motivating power of the Universe

All That Is

Oneness

Wholeness

Peace

Truth

Trust

Strength

Surrender

Wisdom

You

Me

Us

In Everything

The Answer

The Beginning

The End

Everything

 

Simple Tools

Meditate:   Sit comfortably with a tall spine. Rest your hands palms up on your lap. Feel the flow of your breath and then count each breath from 1 to 10 and 10 back down to 1. Slowly open your eyes and notice how you feel.

Walk: Stroll rather than power walking and listen. Really listen to the sounds in the park, on the mountain, or in your neighborhood. Stroll and see. Really see the gentle breeze in the trees or the ways the sun casts its shadows. Stroll and feel. Really feel the movement of your legs and feet, your arms, and your breath.

Eat: Notice the colors and smells of your food. Chew slowly and taste the flavors. Share meals with friends and talk about the food and beverages. What are your favorite flavors and colors of foods? What about textures? Do you like crisp, crunchy, creamy, chunky? (Be sure to include sufficient healthy fluids to hydrate the body.)

Rest: For at least 5 minutes, sit in a comfortable chair and put your feet up or lay down with your feet slightly higher than the back of your head. Close your eyes, feel your breath, and be aware of your body gently releasing into the chair or sofa. Feel your body soften into the support you are giving it. Appreciate that feeling. Learn it.

Laugh: Even when forced, laughter stimulates the release of healing chemicals in the body. It eases the mind and comforts the heart.

Do a little: It is not necessary to change your entire life in a day. Choose one thing to try on each day. For example, if you run or power walk regularly, choose one day a week to stroll instead. This allows your muscles to recover while enhancing mindfulness and relaxing the mind and emotions. Another day do a simple meditation before work or before turning off the light at night. Five things are listed here so do one a day each week for two or three weeks. What are the benefits? What do you like to do best? Incorporate those things more than once a week and slowly build new practices or rituals that enhance the quality of your internal and external life.

Let it be easy. Love yourself. Namaste.

Contrast

I love black and white photography because the shadows reveal the edges; the contrast of black and white brings emphasis to the lines, the details of the subject matter.

Today’s daily quote from Abraham-Hicks Publications caused me to respond with “YES!!” Here is the quote:

The expansion of the Universe and the evolution of all species is dependent on contrast. How could you ever decide what you do want, without living some of what you don’t want? And so, be easy on yourself! Do not try to hold yourself to the impossible standard of only being in a place where everything is exactly as you want it to be. If you could do that you would cease to exist.

Have I not very recently written about these internal standards that undermine us? This is so timely. Synchronicity always causes me to stop for a moment and pay attention. May it do the same for you, dear hearts.

May this moment be okay…even if it isn’t exactly what I want! May it reveal the edges of what I do want so I can more easily move in that direction. May I be grateful for all that is in my life right now: for those things and people that are exactly what I want and for those things and people that are not.

Love and peace all ways….all ways, dear hearts.

Personal Truth

How would you define the idea of Personal Truth? What do you believe about Truth? Is it the same for everyone? Does it have to be? Is there only one Truth? Where do you even begin to answer?

Our world is manifesting the existence of a variety of “truths” in very dramatic ways. How can a person walk into a room filled with people, young and old, and begin to fire an automatic weapon? That person is empowered by personal truth. How does one person in that same room lay their body down over another in hopes of shielding a stranger from certain death? That person is also empowered by personal truth.

I cannot claim to have all the answers. There are, however, some things I have come to understand through personal experience. My Personal Truth is only truly mine if I have journeyed in and through what I have been taught or told to believe. The courage to question with an open mind and an open heart, fearlessly and without guilt, can only lead to deeper understanding, higher wisdom, and an ever-unfolding path of enlightenment. There is only one truth I am responsible for and that is my own. This process can include intellectual pursuits but I find these necessary mainly to clarify and help me to articulate what I have come to know in ways that transcend the intellect. I simply know something is true because I came to know it as Truth within the very essence of my being. I know that I know.

What I experience on a spiritual level refines, matures, deepens and expands this consistently and without ceasing. Enlightened teachers open my mind and heart to newer levels of understanding and more expansive ways to live and share what I have come to know. Students bring my gifts into the light by asking questions and trusting my guidance. Their seeking stimulates my intuition, my knowing, my wisdom to come forth as I honor their path, their journey to their Personal Truth. And yes, their path may be very similar to mine, our Truths will resonate at high levels, our love and respect will be mutual and still this may not mean that we believe exactly all the same things, concepts, ways.

Personal Truth empowers the believer to walk their path with faith, clarity, strength, and commitment. The Truth that a person embraces as their own can also limit them and create judgement, separation, fear, anger, and destruction. Why is there such a stark difference in truths? Beloved, we live in a world, a dimension governed by duality – magnetic polarity of positive and negative forces hold the material world together, reproductive polarity of female and male recreate the material world in the vast majority of cases, belief systems draw us to the light of love or the darkness of fear. We are taught that there are winners and losers or those who are right and those who are wrong. This illusion we are living is based on these concepts.

Does this have to define me as an individual? Does this have to be my Personal Truth? Of course not! Look how many of us have already expanded beyond these beliefs while still accepting the precepts of this physical existence! Balance, oneness, wholeness do not necessarily require sameness, complete agreement in every detail. There is only one me and there is only one you. Each of us is divinely and wonderfully unique and rare in this moment. Together we are more than we are apart. Aren’t you glad we don’t all look the same and have the same-sounding voices? Not only would that be confusing, it might be quite colorless and boring.

What is my point today? I think it is to get you thinking about what you believe and how you came to believe it. You might even consider the idea that you are not yet finished discovering what you believe and where you can go with what you believe. Keep unfolding, keep expanding, keep becoming more and more the Truth of Who You Are!

Love abounds.

Living Relentlessly

Like so many, I am still processing the events in France four days ago. My meditation this morning calls me into the Oneness of All That Is. I am reminded that my brothers and sisters are suffering – some from bullet wounds and/or the loss of loved ones, others from the profound sense of separation that allows them to go to the extremes of mass murder and suicide.

It occurs to me that terrorists have a deep and relentless desire to live what they believe. They demand to be seen and heard as separate, profoundly different, right, and better than those who do not embrace their beliefs. They are the other side of the coin of oneness, the polar opposite.

The question I ask myself this morning is “Am I, as an enlightened being in human form, living what I believe as relentlessly as my separatist relatives are?” Am I as relentless in seeing them in oneness as they are in seeing me as separate from themselves?

I set this intention this morning:

It is my intention to live relentlessly from the Truth of my Soul. I am dedicated to living from the peace and equanimity of my Soul. I understand that Oneness does not imply sameness and that there are all levels of enlightenment, awareness, and unfolding in my human family. I love those that I am not aligned with and I send them blessings of love and light. I am humbled by their confusion, pain, and sense of separation and alienation. I long for their Souls to find true peace in the Oneness and Wholeness of All That Is. I live relentlessly from the Truth of my Soul.

Aum shanti shanti shanti. Aum peace peace peace.

My Heart is Heavy

Yesterday brought sorrow to my heart and mind. I wept as I watched the reports from France. During 9/11 I realized the importance of only taking in enough of the images and sounds to know what had happened so that I could be a loving and compassionate presence in the midst of such terror and fear. For any of us to bombard ourselves with the videos and witness descriptions is self-destructive. In yoga we are called to ahimsa, to do no violence. This applies to ourselves as well as others. The terrorists brought injury and death to a specific number of people. That violence extends outward to families, witnesses, and to all who let themselves feel the sorrow and fear. We hurt for each other. BUT, if I subject myself over and over again to all of that, I am now doing violence to myself. My brain doesn’t know anything about past, present, and future. It only knows right now. Every time I watch or listen to this, my brain thinks it is happening all over again and my body releases the chemicals and experiences the emotion over and over again.

So, who is doing the violence now?

Dear hearts, those directly traumatized need the rest of us to stay calm and turn within to the Source of Love, Compassion and Healing. They need us to radiate the Divine Love and Light that we are. They need us to send them Love and Compassion so that they can heal and be restored to health emotionally, mentally, and physically. Visualize the Love and Radiance that you Are radiating out and blanketing our world – and France in particular right now. Love yourself in the process by being in your moment, in your life as fully as you can. Be at peace, dear hearts, be at peace.

Now is the true challenge. Send love and compassion to those who are taught and who embrace the beliefs of separation, anger, fear, and hatred. Can you even imagine what their internal dialogues and feelings must be like? I hope not. If I even begin to go there, I shudder and pull away. They have no concept of what I know to be true:  when I harm another, I harm myself. They do not understand what they are doing to their own Souls. How does a mother give over her son to these beliefs, to these actions? How does she raise her daughter to do as she has done. How does a father close his heart to the consequences of what he leads his family into? How does he tell the mother of his children this is a worthy thing? I don’t know and I am grateful that I cannot understand.

What I do know is that I cannot go where they go so I must be All That I Am. I must send Love and Compassion to All even as I weep in the process. I must go deep within to the very heart of my being, to the very Essence of my Soul and I must live from there, from my Truth:

We Are One. Aum shanti shanti shanti. Aum peace peace peace.