“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” Wayne Dyer
Radio announcing was one of the most fun jobs I’d ever had until corporate mergers and automation radically changed the industry and I left to reinvent myself. I was sad for what I’d lost and even somewhat bitter for a few years. One day, I finally realized that I’d actually had the opportunity to work in radio while it was live, connected to the local audience, and FUN! That was something my predecessors would not get to do. My perception changed from one of loss to one of gratitude! I was thankful to have ever had that experience which many won’t have.
We spend a lot of time working to earn money to pay for things we already have, yet how often do we stop to truly appreciate them? Do we really love everything that we spend so much time and money to buy, maintain, decorate, clean, and house, or are we just caught up in the routine of it all until it’s more bother than reward? What if we sold or donated what we don’t want/need to recycle it back into the world for someone else to love it, and we actually committed ourselves to spend time/money only on what we really love? This applies to work, leisure, home, romance, friends, possessions, etc.
Life is too short to spend energy on less than what we really love! What else actually matters anyway? If we love it (them), do we appreciate it (them) every day, or instead spend our energy worrying about how to keep it or get more?
Let’s try the trick I discovered about my radio career. Let’s give thanks for having experienced all that we have to this point in our life, and then release our need to hold onto it or control our own destiny long enough to see what else the Universe has for us. This shift immediately increases our abundance as we recognize all that already IS in our life, choosing then to either continue holding and perpetuating that or releasing it for whatever else the Universe has for us, re-opening the flow of energy in our lives.
JOIN US for our first Sacred Wisdom Circle of 2013 from 12:30 to 1:30 PM on January 13th at White Eagle Lodge in Montgomery, Texas. All are welcome as we gather to support and encourage each other during this time of great change. Call 281.252.6600 for details.
So much fuss that the world would end on December 21, 2012…and yet, here we are! Most who found this notion absurd in the first place cracked a few final jokes and went back to life as usual. However, many others wondered at this buzz and began to dig deeper, trying to understand what was really happening. Did the Mayans really mean that the world would end?
I had the pleasure of attending a Shift 2012 ceremony that day as the planets shifted into an alignment not held for thousands of years. Paiute Ceremonial Elder and Mayan teacher “Golden Eagle” Marshall Jack, Hopi Grandmother Pat Fleury, Lemurian Elemental Alchemist “Earth Star” Camilla Blossom, and Seneca Wolf Clan Teaching Elder John Maisel led this New World ceremony and spoke about this new time. My vision of a world reawakening was coincidentally similar to the beautiful New Year’s Eve ball that descends at midnight each December 31st, pictured left.
We were reminded that billions of people live on this planet who, at any given moment, have the most basic needs: food to eat, clean drinking water, a place to go to the bathroom, and shelter over our heads. We have not solved this most basic need in a way that is sustainable on our world. Ironically, not even the ‘wealthiest’ nations in the world have a sustainable solution that does not rely on someone else’s resources (or money) to function. The question was posed to us all: what part will you play in restoring harmonious life between the human, plant, and animal kingdoms upon Mother Earth?
For some of us who were born into this industrialized, credit-driven rat race, that seems a daunting question. Yet, we are the ones who can make the most significant difference! Shifts begin as everything else, with one small step. Use less water. Collect rain water for plants, Grow one thing that is edible…maybe two. Use less energy. Find more energy efficient means of getting around. Carpool more. Go less and relax more. When those things become simple habits, expand. Grow a full garden. Acclimate to using a bit less heating and cooling. What ideas do you have? Google conservation or environment and see what comes up. Find some way to reconnect with Mother Earth on a routine basis so we can disconnect a bit from our concrete jungles and reconnect with the real ones…in whatever forms they take where we live.
The energy has shifted, and for those of us who meditate, we can feel it. Enjoy that support which will ease us in transcending some of the old familiar ways and stepping into some new habits. Meditate and invite yourself to feel the difference. It’s real; so is what we’re doing to our planet. I’m in for some new ways! What about you?
“Nothing exists except atoms and empty space; everything else is opinion.” ~ Democritus, Greek Philosopher
Don Miguel Ruiz writes in The Four Agreements about how we are “domesticated” by our parents, schools, and society into a story about how things were, are, and will be. We’re rewarded for complying and punished for rebelling until we are finally fully domesticated, or locked away in either a prison or an insane asylum. How depressing to finish 18 years of school and realize I’d been a great drone programmed to succeed in the current story. After living the corporate story, the marriage story, the community leadership story, and ending up unfulfilled, I knew I’d lived everyone’s story but my own!
When we live outside what Democritus calls opinions, we can create our own reality. While many talk of living in faith, how much do we honestly trust our hearts and Divine Guidance, and fully surrender to find our own unique Path? We have all these stories about how we can’t just expect money to show up without working really hard for it, the right people aren’t simply going to show up in our lives, etc. Ironically, those things are completely possible when we live in faith and trust our spirit to guide us in the right way. Letting go and surrendering is the challenging part! It’s so much easier to believe the 401K, ‘secure’ job, married-with-kids, socially popular, and materially successful life we’re programmed to seek will make us happy. If so, great! If not, time to change it!
These stories are chains that bind us into lives that are not our purpose. We are here today to write our own story, and the only one who can author our happiness and best path is US. We must trust and have the courage to follow our inner compass to our own happiness, for if we live others’ stories for us, we actually prevent ourselves from getting there. I for one am happier than ever not having any idea what tomorrow brings, for even though I have my scary and insecure moments, the joy is off the charts!
“The Masters accept that Buddha represents the Way to Enlightenment, but they clearly set forth that Christ IS Enlightenment, or a state of consciousness for which we are all seeking – the Christ light of every individual…” Baird T. Spalding (Forward, Book I of the excellent series Life and Teaching of the Masters of the Far East)
All around me lately it seems that folks are beginning to awaken to magical, overwhelming, and even at times scary powers that we have. These are in fact Divine gifts possessed by all of us, and gifts which Christ came to show us how to activate and use for good. They are beautiful, amazing gifts that give us the power to activate the Divine within us to heal ourselves and others, and work other “miracles” once believed to only be magically possessed by Christ. However, there is no mainstream avenue to learning about these in our society. Many are scared that the most common people might begin running around healing themselves and others. Not only would that reduce profits to all who benefit from providing these services to a helpless public, but discovering our innate powers would reduce our dependence and surrender to other human authority.
In this powerful 2012 year, the energy is shifting. People are awakening with some delight and much confusion to the idea that they have gifts and powers never before realized. There are people and organizations to assist all who awaken to step into their Divine power and purpose. A beautiful new age is upon us. Let’s stay in communication as we embark on these new paths, and love one another to a brighter and more empowered and Loving tomorrow.
Something about walking in the purity of the Amazon Rainforest last spring really brought home to me how disconnected we have become from our planet. We talk about this in bits and pieces, but when we really look at the totality of our disconnection, it is startling! No WONDER we are sick and tired of being sick and tired. Isn’t it time to slow down and ground ourselves in a more sustainable way of living?
When I talk this way, I tend to get strong reactions from people who fear I’m suggesting we revert back to covered wagons crossing the plains. Nothing of the sort! However, as with anything, there must be a comfortable balance outside this extreme lifestyle we’ve adopted. Somewhere in the search for comfort and bliss, we went straight to craziness!
Since the industrial era, the American Dream has shifted to higher education, a cushier office, six-figure+ annual incomes, a couple of kids and pets per family, one or two houses, two or more cars, the possible boat or airplane, etc. How many hours are we willing to sacrifice to make this happen? Why is it ok that we stay tethered to work all the time now? Is all this stress worth the seemingly incidental rise in illness and disease that goes with it? When is enough enough?
Outside of just the busy-ness factor, let’s talk about all that accompanies that. Take for example mass-production of food. When I was in the Amazon, I ate native grown foods, and the flavors exploded in my mouth. Even our “organic” produce no longer tastes that way after being grown in our overworked and nutrient-deficient soils. When would we try to amend that by growing our own foods and enriching our own soils if we are busy working all the time? Worse yet if we are living on chemically processed foods and not even trying to get any nutrients from Mother Earth.
What about the air we breathe? Even that is artificial and processed. I stood in the jungle and inhaled as deeply as I could the earthy smells and fresh air. I’ve never smelled air like that! Most often it is filtered, air-conditioned or heated air in office buildings, homes, gyms…or air that has been filled with the waste fumes of automated vehicles and technology. Where can we go for truly fresh air here?
As most of us work or attend school during the week, our primary exercise is done indoors in a gym or at home/work. Where would we go into nature for a brisk hike to experience the wildlife and enjoy the sights and sounds of Mother Earth? The token ‘natural areas’ left behind by subdivision builders hardly qualify as nature!
Where is the balance? How can we get back to some of that? Can we not restore some semblance of man/nature harmony in our “civilized” lifestyles? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, or ways you may be restoring some of this balance into your life!
Is it just me, or have you felt like you can’t quite find your place in this world? Maybe you struggle between what you have to do to make a living or sustain yourself and what you love to do and do instinctively well. Maybe you relate much better to the music, styles, interests, and culture of another time or place? The more I talk about this with others, the more I realize I am definitely not alone in this challenge. Sadly, most of those who relate to me on this have also shared my struggle with self-esteem since we discovered early in life we didn’t fit in.
For me, this journey has led me to explore and deeply resonate with teachings and beliefs about reincarnation. Many faith-based organizations and churches either don’t discuss this or they denounce it. So for me, I didn’t begin to actually have feelings and memories that validated my reincarnation until I allowed myself to consider the possibility. I was raised in churches that denounced it, but in adulthood I gave myself permission to openly reconsider possibilities. Now, I have been shown several past lives, and even find that some of my closest friends and relatives in this lifetime have been with me for a very, very long time as our souls reincarnate into different roles and experiences throughout time. (A good book on this is Little Soul in the Sun by Neale Donald Walsh.)
When I began asking to be shown more about this, answers would come in dreams, meditations, and new found spiritual guides and teachers. One thing I now know is that I lived in South America as a Native American Indian, and I discovered more of this during my recent trip to the Amazon in Peru. I also know that I played drums then, and have discovered that I’m not too bad at it now, either! Another friend instinctively knows a lot about a country she’s never visited or read about, and when she researches, she’s right. The difference is that she is vividly describing it historically in another time.
Some healers spend their childhood discovering they are born with gifts they now fear to reveal because they don’t want to be labeled as crazy or feared as we have historically done in the past with witches and the like. In adulthood, they become trained and certified in their natural, innate gifts to lend credibility to themselves, even though they were born knowing what to do. Sadly, most were loners in childhood, as are many ‘old souls’ who can’t relate to others who have not been here a multitude of times before and don’t instinctively know all that they do.
My compulsion in writing this was to start a conversation about how normal it is to be different….in fact, everyone is. Our truest beauty is in our uniqueness, and we are the only ones who can reject mainstream stereotyping and programming to decide that we are most beautiful when we let our own diverse and beautiful uniqueness shine.
Mainstream adult America has been programmed to have a certain level of education, job, house, marriage, family, bank balance, status, appearance, etc. We can’t wait for the media and business to change the model we strive to emulate; we must change it. When enough of us decide that being unique and authentic IS fitting in, the model will change.
I see how not honoring all of myself led me to gain weight, be unhappy and unhealthy, fear rejection, withdraw, and more. I am in the process of changing that and allowing myself to fully be me, and do you know what? I’m attracting others like me – the real me – and having the time of my life! We attract what we put forth, so conformists attract conformists, and authenticity attracts authenticity.
Enough about me…the purpose of this was to start a conversation, so how do YOU feel about all of this? Can you relate to feeling like you don’t fit in? If so, how could you start to express more of your true self without fearing isolation? If you have worked through this yourself, how do you allow yourself to be fully expressed in a culture that encourages cookie-cutter living? Please comment below so we can end this isolation and loneliness to come together in our individuality!
My Mom was definitely an expert at judging everyone and everything from angles most people would never even dream of, so I consider myself well trained. In fact, at 46 I can still hear her voice (in my mind as she passed away 18 years ago) judging many of my actions. An interesting thing has happened over time, though. Her voice has turned into my own, self-judging everything until at times I simply stop all action because I don’t know what to do next. Lately I have been hyper-conscious of the little judge inside me, what she does to my relationships when I am critical (“helpful”) toward others, and how to distinguish the difference internally between the voice of self-judgment (“reason”), and the voice of spiritual Divine guidance.
To start, I am shocked at how much of what we think and say is a judgment. Our mind has nothing else to do, so this goes on 24/7! This is good. That is bad. This is stupid. That is ugly. Oh how beautiful! Isn’t so-and-so ridiculous/brilliant/lazy…why don’t you do this faster/slower/softer/louder…it never ends! It isn’t so harmful running a-muck in the mind, but then we are gracious enough to impose these judgments on those we to us. You should…you ought to…have you tried…why don’t you…??? Oh, but it doesn’t stop yet. Next, we get insulted, offended, or puzzled when they don’t take our well-intended advice, as if we are inside of them and know exactly when they should do what for their Highest good. My favorite action that I have observed is to then repeat myself as if they must not have heard me the first time(s). What is that all about? We humans are really funny critters.
What about what we do inside ourselves to ourselves? How harshly we criticize ourselves because we don’t think we’re up to par. I’m not sure what gauge we are using, but often it is perfection itself, and it becomes obvious why we never measure up. (Possibly we again had some helpful family members in childhood measuring our progress against perfection and letting us know how we were doing…like teachers with grades, parents with unrealistic goals, etc.) Then we run around feeling unworthy or inadequate. There is that insecurity and absence of self-love in every aspect where we harshly judge ourselves.
Next, along come a few well-intentioned friends and loved ones to tell us what they would love to see us do differently/better/faster/slower…and if we think they know better than we do what is best for us, we may even try their advice. However, at some point we are designed to live our lives according to our internal compasses and to fully have the experiences we chose in coming here. How can they know what those are or how we could best manage our life? Simply, they can’t. Their opinion is just that, an opinion!
We must turn inward on a regular basis through meditation, prayer, journaling, etc. to bring to light the internal judge and to clear the way for Spirit to guide our thoughts and actions in ways of service for our Highest good. Spirit is the only Source we can respectfully surrender to and find the guidance we so desperately want and need in this world. Our well-meaning loved ones really can’t know what is best for us, just as we have absolutely no idea what another person is here to experience or their best course of action.
In Buddhism, they talk a lot about being the observer of ourselves. That is a great way to detach from our overly stimulated minds and allow the thoughts to come as they do without reacting unconsciously to them. The mind is a busy organ, and a great resource, but it is not the best navigator to happiness, for it is unable to feel happiness. It is the ego keeping us safe by judging everything around us and remaining on guard for possible danger, threats, opportunities, etc. Watch with amusement and gratitude at how well it operates, and then turn within to heart and Higher Mind for the answers Spirit knows are best for our unique individual Path.
How did we get so caught up in judging each others’ paths to consciousness that we forgot the purpose? Within each religion are factions or denominations arguing over rules and interpretations of their holy scriptures. On a broader level, we fight wars over who has the right God or savior. I don’t claim to be an expert in such matters, but to me this really seems to miss the whole point! We can’t be loving and supporting and encouraging if we are busy dividing, judging, and condemning.
Religion failed me as a child, and for years I blamed God. I thought that the differences and disillusionment that had left me church-less had actually left me Godless, but then how much clarity would a hurt 12 year old have about such matters?
Over the years, I have explored a lot. Like clothing, I try on belief systems and teachings and ideas, keeping what fit and discarding the rest. Possibly more importantly, I found great peace and healing in the Journey to consciousness itself.
I don’t claim to have all, or more likely hardly any, of the answers to life, faith, or Divinity. However, what I do have is a deep joy in that I have never known before, and that I would wish upon every person. We all deserve happiness and peace.
Whatever your Path, know that the choices you make and how you arrive at them matter little. It is the Journey itself that means everything!
Pine trees grow in groves and forests rather than being sparsely scattered across the landscape. They drop a lot of needles and quickly grow tall enough to hog the sunlight, leaving only their trunks at our eye level and crowding out slower-growing hardwood trees that struggle for light and space. Since the hardwoods are typically fuller and more popular, many people chop down pine trees to make space for other preferable trees. I love all life too much to do that and have mostly pine trees around my home. And then there are the ants…
Ants have taken over my lawn! No matter how much I try to rid myself of these stinging pests, I am apparently outnumbered. Fire ants bite me each time I mow the grass. Tiny ants continue to find a way into my kitchen and bathroom. Many people would have declared chemical warfare by now, but I don’t like to distribute poison and most natural remedies have as yet been ineffective.
Yesterday I was considering these generally unwanted ‘pests’ of the insect and plant kingdom and found it interesting that we humans deem ourselves worthy judges to remove all that we feel doesn’t belong. We do it with ants and pine trees and people. We do it with old architecture and natural wonders and pretty much everything else. This us-and-them mentality of competition and judgment is rampant. Why does the human ego need to be judge and jury? Could we learn anything important from our unwanted nuisances?
Pine trees are amazing to observe. Despite a relatively shallow root structure, they can live for many, many years through adverse conditions. Watching them whip about with their long trunks to survive hurricane season after active hurricane season, I see how flexibility and endurance help us win in the game of life. I watch hardwood trees fill in around them to happily coexist with their lanky friends. Pine needles protect the ground during seasons when it should be covered. Who am I to come in and remove the natural order of things to replant what I deem desirable? Isn’t that behavior rather odd when we look at it?
Ants are experts on community living. They work tirelessly together and operate as a collective in everything. In the Amazon, I observed a freeway of female carpenter ants (see photo) carrying leaves tirelessly for about a mile to the colony in their nest. Our guide informed us that the females work 24 hours a day doing that! Ants provide a service in the greater ecological synergy of life. Who am I to poison any because I want them gone? Why would I do that?
Some of the most amazing people I have ever met are outcast by mainstream society. Their beauty standing in their own unique personality, gifts, potential, and self-expression are the finest anywhere. No society can manufacture anything more perfect. Maybe the reason we humans struggle to obtain an abundance of artificial comfort and beauty is that it isn’t honoring to who we are anyway.
An important aspect of learning to love ourselves is learning to love all that is…as it is! The more I accept life and see the beauty therein, the more beauty and possibility I see within myself. May nature teach us well in this journey of possibilities we call life!