Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Moments of Oneness

Have you ever felt a moment of one-ness?

Like watching a sunset and feeling the expansiveness of that gorgeous sky inside of yourself?

I'm sure you must have.
These moments are precious. But not few. They surround us. They are right there in the beautiful moments and even underneath the ugly ones.

Did You Feel That?

We have small earthquakes from time to time where I live, and people always ask the next day, "Did you feel the quake last night?"

We are lucky that they are small quakes. Most of the time, I don't notice them. It feels like a semi truck drove by and shook the walls a bit. Twice in the last 40 years, we had rolling quakes. I felt those. They were like being on a boat with a wake crossing under it. I guess that it's more like what I expect an earthquake to feel like. It's definitely different from a truck driving by. So I notice it.

So how often do I miss the moments of subtle beauty in my life?

And too often we let the moments of Peace and Beauty slip by without savoring the moment. Or sometimes even noticing them. I missed the chance to wake up just a little more.

Aren't these the moments that give life meaning?
Aren't these the things we all want?

We work, maybe have a family, have a long to do list.
But underneath all of that, isn't the goal to have peace, love, and joy?

Isn't that what we all want?

A Suggestion

Next time you notice something beautiful, whether it is the scent of a rose, a child's beaming face, a beloved pet, or a magnificent thunderstorm... Stop a moment and notice the beauty and peace around you, and take a breath. Ask yourself, "Isn't that what it's all about?"

Give yourself permission to drink it in fully. To allow more Beauty and Peace in your heart that you ever believed you could stand. Stay long enough to feel that space and Joy and Magnificance inside of you.

Blessed be.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Align with the Divine

How do you align with the Divine?

And while we're at it, what is the Divine to you?

What Do You Call the Thing That Gives Us Life?

Do you call it God, Spirit, Infinite, Source, or one of the dozens of other names used around the world? Or maybe you like Deepak Chopra's term: the Field of Infinite Possibilities, or Einstein's term, according to Wikipedia: a comprehensible mystery.

Whatever you call it, there is something going on beyond what we can see, hear, observe with our five senses, or measure with current scientific instruments.

That something is what allows us to know that we are conscious beings, to have an awareness of ourselves as a person.

That same something tells us who we are, what we want in life. What we don't want. It's more than our own brain. If you don't believe that, who is it that knows that you had that thought?

Change Your Thinking - Improve Your Life

So if you would like to improve any area of your life, where do you start?
If you are stuck in a rut, what do you do?

If you keep thinking the thoughts you've been thinking, you will get the same results. Your life will be the same next year and in ten years as it is today. So if you want to change something in your life, start by noticing your thoughts and choosing more effective thoughts.

It's Bigger Than Denial

Turning away form the condition does not mean being in denial that it exists. It is remembering that the Infinite is much bigger than whatever is going on right now.

You are the landscape. The events in your life are the things that pass through it.

How About You?

How do you align with the divine?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Feminine Power

What does word feminine mean to you?
What does the word power mean to you?

Do they go together in your mind?

The Western Woman Will Save the World

Back in 2009, the Dalai Lama said that he is a feminist, and said that he believes that Western women will save the Western world.

For more on that comment, click here.

I think that he means that it is the feminine, life-affirming side of us that will save the world from the masculine profit-driven side of us.

Unchecked greed and consumerism is killing us. Respecting and caring for our home – this planet – and for each other, is the only thing that will save us. That is traditionally a feminine role.

Survival of the fittest doesn't mean the strongest or meanest or fastest. It means survival of the most cooperative, the most adaptable, the most intelligent. I don't mean book-learning, which is also vital for solving the problems we as a species have created. I mean being able to see the consequences of our actions and our attitudes, our thoughts and our deeds.

In Spite of Or Because?

Women have been allowed to vote for less than 100 years. And at the same time, we have the power to save the world form the path of destruction we seem hell-bent to follow.
Isn't that interesting? We got the vote just 5 years before my mother was born. We went into the work force during World War II. We got birth control in the 60s. These three milestones have allowed us so much freedom.

So how will we use that freedom?

Change begins in our own minds. So every day I have hundreds of opportunities to choose peace, kindness, and life. To trap and carry that spider outside instead of squashing it. To use vinegar instead of insecticide. To pull weeds rather than spray toxins on the ground, allowing them to seep into the water table. To put on a sweater instead of turning up the heat. To plan my errands so I make a loop once or twice a week instead of running to the store every time I need something.


For me, mindfulness is a big form of power. It keeps me centered and calm. It keeps me aware of the big picture in my life and in the world. Not so ironic that going inside myself makes me feel bigger, more expansive.

Masculine and Feminine Kinds of Power

As you probably know, we all have both masculine and feminine inside us. So this is not to say that only men use masculine power and only women use the feminine variety.

Claire Zammit of Evolving Wisdom, has a beautiful list of words that compares commonly-held assumptions about masculine and feminine Power.

Which Kinds of Power Do You Choose From This List?

For 2 free audio downloads, and for more information about Claire's Feminine Power program, click here.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Did Hachi Suffer Needlessly?

Have you seen the movie Hachi? Do you feel for him? Do you think he suffered needlessly?

It's a heartbreaking story about a man whose dog greats him at the train station each evening.
(not Hachi)
One day the man drops dead at work, and the dog continues to wait for his master at that train station every day for more than a decade until his own death.

It's complete with violins and attempts to stop the dog from waiting. The man's wife moves away, and the dog keep escaping the back yard and going to the train station a few towns away.

Everyone I know - including me - tears up at the thought of such devotion, such loyalty, such hope and such love.

It is a very bittersweet movie. You know the story from watching the previews. If you like tear-jerkers and dogs, this is a movie to watch with a whole box of tissues.

Is It Just Me?

But I find that when I watched it, I wasn't just sad. I was also angry at Hachi's family. It didn't have to be that way for him. I was sad that the dog went through that when he didn't have to.

Getting Closure

If the dog had had a chance to see his master's dead body, of he had attended the funeral, then he
might not have gone to the train station to wait all those years. If the dog had had a chance to see the body, he would have known that his master was not coming back. He would not have wondered all those years. He might not have ached and waited and worried and hoped for all those years. To me, that's cruel to put the dog through all that. They have minds. They know what death is. We've seen videos of animals sitting with their dead friends. Why do we insist on thinking that they cannot reason on this basic level?

It's That Way For Humans

I know that my experience of grief was quite different with my parents. One died suddenly, and was cremated before I flew out for the service. The other died after a long illness, and had an open casket. I had never seen a dead body before, and it was strange seeing his dead boy at the service.

But it really allowed me to see the reality of his death in a way that wasn't possible when I didn't see my mother's body. My mother died so suddenly, she probably didn't even know what happened at first. My dad definitely had time to adjust to what was happening.

We Love our Dogs and Cats Because They're Like Us

 Mammals care for their young. They have the same emotions as we do. That's why we are so connected to our pets. And it's why they are connected to us if we spend time with them. We have empathy for our pets as they do for us. They know what love is better than most humans. They know what devotion is more than most humans. So I think it's only fair to the animal to give them a chance to understand, in their own way, when they lose a master.

How About You?

Has your pet lost a family member? How did s/he respond?

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April Fools' Day

Have you ever felt like a fool?
Even if it's not April Fools' Day?

If you are human, chances are it's happened more than once in your life.
At some point, we all get a little lost in the moment, or a thought, or a person.
Know what I mean?

But I am learning, after a few decades on the planet, that I don't need to be fooled by my old patterns and programming. What's that you say? I mean the thoughts that are the background of my mind. My emotional landscape. 

Your Set-Point

We have a happiness set-point, like a thermostat. We have a Love set-point, a trust set-point, a money
set-point. We have a set-point for just about everything you can name.

It's like the upper limit of what is normal to us.
So if your life until now was not happy for example, you may not know any different. You may not have what we call a Mental Equivalent, a living example of what happiness (or money or trust or health) looks like.

Hanging out with people who are focused on improving their minds really helps! I appreciate my spiritual community for being that place for me.

So How Do You Change That?

My favorite way is to look for people who have what I want, and then notice whatever I can that can add to my own picture of happy. Or love. 

I worked in an office where nearly all the men were married, and I worked with up to half dozen men who seemed quite happily married. I was single, and hoping for a good relationship. So I just let myself be aware of the men's energy, presence, attitudes. In that way, I started building an idea of what a man looks like who is committed, happy, and friends with his wife. I also practiced feeling that I already WAS in a committed, happy relationship. Those are both ways to build a Mental Equivalent. It's a way to teach your brain what you want. To install a new normal in your subconscious so you can recognize what you want when you see it. That's courtesy of your Reticular Activating System.

Young kids are also great examples of happiness, cooperation, love, and tolerance. I mean kids young enough that they haven't been taught otherwise.

Back to Happy

If you are interested in a great resource for re-programming your happiness level, I suggest Marci Shimoff's book, Happy For No Reason. Google her, and you'll find some free resources.

So have fun! And don't worry too much about looking a fool!

How About You?

How do you like to outwit your obsolete mental programming?
How do you install upgraded mental software?