Monday, October 27, 2014

What's Under Your Halloween Mask?

Do you enjoy dressing up or wearing a mask for Halloween?
Letting your alter-ego shine?

Do you wear a mask at other times in your life?

How About at Work?

Perhaps you need to conceal at least some of who you are at work, or in certain situations. Or with certain people.

Halloween is coming. Will you be wearing a mask? Do you wear a mask even when it isn't Halloween?

Early in my work life/ career, I worked for a corporation. In that world, you need to look a certain way. It went deeper than wearing professional clothing. It meant behaving a certain way, following the unwritten rules. I wasn't going to get very far in the company because I drive an import. I could fit into that world, but it never fit me. I was me at home, and another version of me at work. I appreciated it, but eventually I left.

What's Under the Mask?

We often mask fear with anger or confusion. Or grief with other emotions. We may mask almost any emotion that we don't want to feel.

I grew up with several brothers, and saw the social taboo against showing emotion in public, or at all. I adopted that survival technique, feigning indifference, or simply isolating myself to avoid conflict.

As adults, we are often expected to have a public persona. Even if you had the most idyllic upbringing, many workplaces have a culture of stoicism or formality. Who we are to ourselves may or may not be how other people perceive us.

And if you wear a mask too long, you may start to believe that that’s who you really are. Underneath all the roles, responsibilities, and stuff, who’re we really?

Do I remember who I am without all that?

Sitting with My Unmasked Self

I find meditation a wonderful way to remember who I really am. As I breathe deeply and feel the
Presence within, I feel more of who I am at a core level.

There is the impersonal side of that: the felt sense of the bigger I Am from which I appeared and
continue to manifest each day.

And then there’s the personality of me. Kind of the prism through which Spirit shines Its Light.
As I sit in silence with this Presence, I cannot help but feel more in tune with that prism. With the felt sense of I Am.

Without labels. Without roles. Without responsibilities. Without rules, without ideas, without politics, without any of the layers I have learned over the years. Just the Is-ness of Being alive.


After all, I am living with me for my whole life. I may as well give myself the gift of attention, and learn who I really am inside.

Sometimes three deep breaths is enough to center and come home to myself. It’s the best possible mini-vacation, and all it costs is a few minutes of my time.

Ahhh... that's better.

Monday, October 20, 2014

You Live in Infinity

I live in Infinity. In an Infinite Oneness.

If I ever doubt that, I can always look at the word. The letter or word "I" appears in "Infinity"3 times.

I Am Made of the Infinite

I am part of that One Infinite Being in which all things appear. A vast ocean of invisible Presence. I am a sparkle on the surface of that infinite Ocean.

That Infinity is all around me. It is inside me. It is what I am made of, and what created the stars that exploded millennia ago and came to this planet to create my physical body.

I breathe in and feel that Life Force. Where does it end and I begin?

It is the Force that holds this form together. It holds the planets in their orbits. It holds the physical world in its shape. It created the laws of physics when it created this world.

I Am Not Really Solid

When science examines subatomic particles, they are found to be fast-moving energy. There is no
actual physical substance in our physical world. Imagine that for a moment.

And all that energy and illusory form is held together by invisible forces. Life itself animates us and clothes our energetic body in our physical form.

We think with our portion of the Mind of the Infinite, as though we were a radio receiver and transmitter, in constant communication with the One Mind that created and creates every thing.

That's why we can create with our minds. We are created in the likeness of our creator, and have Its attributes, including creativity.

We can pretend that we are separate. And we certainly learn that growing up. We learn it from others who learned it from others, down through the generations. We simply forgot who we are.

So take a moment to feel that you are made of the one infinite Being. Enjoy it. You have been given the gift of life. You have been given the gift of awareness.

How cool is that?

Monday, October 13, 2014

Feeling Without? Look Within

Like everyone, I've had moments when I have felt without.

My entire adolescence for example.

Whether it's a feeling of being without friends, without cash, without understanding, or without a clue, there is hope for change.

Luckily these days, those times are few and far between. But when I was stuck in that deep hole in my mind, it wasn't easy to find a way out. After all, staying in that rut is only going to keep producing the same thoughts and same emotions, and so the same results.

A Mental Shift Gets Things Moving

If I mentally change empty hands into receptive hands or giving hands, that changes everything.

At those times, I have found it helpful to reach out to others. Do some volunteering. Go out for a walk in the woods, or go to the ocean and breathe the fresh air while looking at that vast horizon. That reminds me that there is so much more to life than whatever put me in that mental hole. It takes my mind off myself, and with any luck, I'll start to change my thinking.

Another helpful thing is to go within. It's great when I need clarity about something, or when I need to make a decision.

Here's one way to go within and get clarity:

  1. Find a quiet place and get comfy.
  2. Close your eyes and breathe deeply at least three times. Listen to your breath going in. And out.
  3. Think of something that makes you happy. I like to think of hearing my cat purring or snoring. That always puts a smile on my face.
  4. If you want, invoke the help of your inner guidance or higher knowing.
  5. Bring your question to mind. Gently. No worries. No push. Just let it sit in your lap a moment.
  6. Then ask yourself, "What would I feel if this were solved?" or "What would the perfect outcome look like?" or "What if I knew the perfect response?" Something like that.
  7. And listen. Inside. Imagine your heart to speak to you. What would it say?
  8. If you need to make a choice, it might be helpful to put the choices side by side and sense which one feels right. Or lit up. Or try holding one option in your right hand and the other in your left hand. Which one feels better or lighter?
  9. If you still don't have an answer, affirm that you will wake up easily & clearly knowing what you need to know for the situation.
  10. Thank your inner knowing, your heart, or whatever you touched to get the answer, even if you didn't get one yet.
  11. Breathe a nice sigh of relief, and off you go.


How About You?

Let me know how it works for you, or if you have another favorite way to get clarity in your mind.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Slippery Slope of Holidays

I need to be extra aware of how I eat this time of year. It's a slippery slope of food and parties from my October birthday through the winter holidays.

It Starts With Birthday Cake

Oh, it's your birthday. Have a slice., Indulge. It's a special occassion.

And it's hard to imagine saying no to chocolate decadance, multi-layer with fudge icing.
Even though the sugar rush will make my eyelids sweat.

And It's All Downhill From There

If I'm not careful, it's all downhill from there. The Halloween candy comes out right about that time. And even though I usually eat very healthy, organic, mostly vegetarian diet, I have my guilty pleasures. If they were occasional, that would be fine. But I have this little problem with sugar. It really is a legal drug. Not as bad as narcotics, of course, but it affects the same places in the brain.

Then comes Thanksgiving. With so many opportunities to overdo it.

Then Christmas, with its special candy and treats everywhere for weeks. If I'm not careful, I can easily add 10 pounds in those three months. Can't say it's without noticing, because my clothes don't fit if I do that.

Then there's a brief respite until the Valentine's Day candy comes out. Then Easter. Well, you get the picture.

A Lot Easier

It's easier to avoid these sugary treats now that I am not working in an office every day. When I worked, there were treats everywhere. People brought them in frequently. And if I got started on them I could go for weeks eating way too many every day. I never kept them in my house, so now it's easier to avoid them.

Redefining Treats

Since I feel physically awful after I eat that way, I cannot call them treats any more. And I was pre-diabetic last year and had to get a handle on it. So even though these sugary delights were treats as a kid - rewards really, for eating the stuff I didn't want to eat - I have learned to see them as pretty decorations that really are not a treat at all. The real treat is eating healthy, nutritious food that supports my health and well-being.

And as I avoid sugar, I don't even really like it much when I eat it. I have found that raw cacao mixed with honey tastes infinitely better than any dark chocolate bar.

When I get off-track, I join my friend's e-cleanse program, where she sends a daily email about healthy eating. It's fun and easy.

I'm not saying I always eat healthy, but when I do indulge, it's at a more sensible level and amount. And I feel better physically and emotionally for it.

How About You?

What do you do to help yourself get through the holidays?