Life Has A Crush On You

Falling in love with Life one day at a time…

Tag: inspirational

Soul Rain

We so often hide from the rain. We cover ourselves from its sprinkles. We put concerted energy into preparing and planning strategies for traveling outside in downpours. We get annoyed when we get wet. But tonight I smelled the earth as it received the rain and my whole body let go of something. My heartbeat found some place in the orchestra of the weather and I felt more at home. I felt safe. I ventured out without a raincoat.
What is it? I couldn’t help but think. What is it that is so refreshing as millions of detailed water drops hit the earth? What is it about the pause and drink the ground seems to take? What is it about the joy the early spring sprouts radiate that I am so attracted to?
The answer I heard was that here you were watching full acceptance- and only with this acceptance can you be fully alive. I thought of my work, how for months I have been resisting more work. Resenting “too much” and struggling to balance. Each raindrop I equated to another detail I needed to tend too. We are watered by these details. We grow by their contribution, but in nature in no way are they a hindrance. No, they are necessary and part of growth. The inundation of every unique drop to the earth is an example of how it all can work out, from the minutest drop to the largest tree. All are necessary. The soil doesn’t resist the rain because it’s too much. No. It accepts it. The animals don’t complain or revolt against the wet. They accept it.
So why don’t we take a lesson from nature for the times in life when everything seems to be showering down on us? Why don’t we lay back with arms wide open and accept it. Why don’t be live like the birds and sit through it? Why don’t we make like the ground and let it change our consistency, structure, and worth to everything depending on us? There are seasons and forecasts for every stage of life, it’s ok to be in a rainy season, it’s a season for acceptance before tremendous growth.

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Time Affluence – Developing a Practice of Experiencing Awe

Drew picked up on it this morning.

“Are you ok?… Are you happy?”

I had to face the question with honesty. In truth, the underlying current of my being really wasn’t happy. It was muddled. Overwhelmed. Being beaten up by my own self-criticism. By looking at myself honestly, I knew exactly what he felt- I had lost a sense of myself.

We took some time to describe what exactly it was – why wasn’t I happy. I went through a laundry list of tasks at work and we talked of chunking it down and making it manageable. And, as always, when you continue to talk and really look at the issue, the superficial reasons began to peel away and the heart of the issue emerged.

“I haven’t written.” I finally realized a deeper issue. “I haven’t written because I don’t feel connected to God.”

And that’s the truth. The laundry list of tasks has become a tool of the ego to keep me from living in the present, from dwelling in awe, from trusting in someone and something greater than myself.

Could I flip this around? Could I look to the directives of “my tasks” as coming from the Divine, even if they are presented in a secular world?

The truth is that I knew when I accepted and took this job that it was aligned with a Divine plan. There were signs and perfections scattered throughout the days. Now that it has revved up, I seem to have forgotten the tremendously powerful perspective that it is Divinely Perfect. I seemed to have forgotten how to remain alert, assiduous and diligent – and happy, carefree, and joyous.

The solution, for today, suggested by Drew was to have a happy day. A day dedicated to finding and living in that balance again. I couldn’t agree with him more.

But the tool that really helped me begin this day was an article posted by a friend entitled, “How to make time expand”. Everything within me knew that this was really the issue. It wasn’t the work, the tasks, the job, my overwhelm (I am excited to finally be doing so many things that I love to do) – it’s that I had lost my sense of having abundant time.

When I was intensely practicing yoga last year, I remember the message being delivered that there was more than enough time to do everything. There was more than enough time to accomplish your dreams and your goals. To love those that you love. To transform your mind, body and spirit to be its best. There was so much freedom in this idea. I swam in it. I drank it up. And remarkably, by living in this place of abundant time, I accomplished more. I was more productive, happy, aligned than ever before. The article calls this “time affluence”, a recent term that directly corrects the other aspect of “time famine”. It is rare when you are looking for a term, a phrase to encapsulate what you are struggling with, and then it comes in the most unusual channels to you, but that is exactly what happen today.

Time affluence, and what creates it, is being studied now and I look forward to hearing their research and trying it in practice. But the two things they suggest to create more “time affluence” in the article are giving time away and experiencing awe.  Not only do we have the satisfaction of helping others, of feeling useful and productive when we give our time away to others, but there is also a sense of definitive ending. The tasks we see for ourselves can drag on forever, and this creates more time famine than time affluence.

Then the idea of experiencing more awe is fascinating. Awe brings us to the present moment. Awe creates a sense of time loss – expanding time to be eons within a moment. We lose ourselves (including our “to-do” lists) and we feel happy. But can we do that without going to a waterfall, or meeting a baby for the first time?

Yes, we can. It’s all a matter of perspective, and stopping to see what really is around and within you.

When looking at this concept of awe, this morning, I realize the real reason I write. I write because each day there are hidden pockets of awe waiting to be dwelled in, discovered, played with and lived. I experience loss of time when I write because here I am truly in awe. I am in awe of the workings and perfection around me. I am in awe of the emotions I experience, the thoughts that I have, the ideas I am exposed to.  Writing is my practice of experiencing awe.

I had been pushing writing away for the past few weeks, so no wonder I have been feeling pressed for time and not connected with God. The short 20 minutes I take to write on something remarkable, on some Divine aspect of life that is around me seeps into all other aspects of life. By expanding time just once a day, in one way – I can expand it in everything.  Writing takes me out of living in the future and puts me immediately engaging with the present. This, the present moment, is the only dwelling place of endless possibilities, love, grace and joy.

I can see now that I am not a writer. I am a discoverer. I am an observer. I am a lover. I write because I cannot help but to share what I discover and observe. I write because this is my processing tool. Writing enables me to play and interact with the Divine that is all around me and within me. It is in writing,  in these moments of expanse, that I catch the most wonderful, awe-inspiring, True Life I can ever imagine. And it is in writing that I hope to share, to give this to you, too.

 

 

Following your own blueprint at work

It is interesting moving into February and March. This weekend marks the beginning of a downhill slope for me of event after event. All I can think of when August finally does come is that I will have gotten at least 100 times better at all my jobs with all this practice!

But the question- the balance- lays in the approach. Will I derive a judgment of my work by the approval of others? Will success lay in the hands of my colleagues, bosses and general opinion? Or will I so dare to acknowledge the one true judgment, the one true standard, the one that lays within me?

It is an act of vulnerability to fearlessly pursue the tasks before you with your own personal blueprint for joy and unique expression. You are taking off the cloak of business, of stress, or being overburdened, which in some work environments can be measurements of your effort or even success at completing the job.

It is radical to find joy where others find stress. It is radical to trust when typically we try to control. It is radical to move from your heart not your head at your desk.

Like most radical things this new movement of yours will either die of its own accord- or change the world- your world- in deeply moving and profound ways to produce a life you were destined to live.

So yes, there is risk at working according to your own blueprint. But there in also lies the risk of never trying, the pain of conforming to a shape that isn’t yours, and a life spent worrying and stressing over the fickle opinions of others.

I hope as I begin this busy season of work that I remember my own orientation. That I make decisions aligned with the Divine that lives within me and that I remember this guidance is always available so I too can relax and enjoy this marvelous ride.

From “A Course in Miracles”

 

To heal is to make happy. I have told you to think how many opportunities you have had to gladden yourself, and how many you have refused. This is the same as telling you that you have refused to heal yourself. The light that belongs to you is the light of joy. Radiance is not associated with sorrow. Joy calls forth an integrated willingness to share it, and promotes the mind’s natural impulse to respond as one. Those who attempt to heal without being wholly joyous themselves call forth different kinds of responses at the same time, and thus deprive others of the joy of responding whole-heartedly.

 

To be whole-hearted you must be happy. If fear and love cannot coexist, and if it is impossible to be wholly fearful and remain alive, the only possible whole state is that of love. There is no difference between love and joy. Therefore, the only possible whole state is the wholly joyous. To heal or to make joyous is therefore the same as to integrate and to make one. That is why it makes no difference to what part or by what part of the Sonship the healing is offered. Every part benefits, and benefits equally.

 

You are being blessed by every beneficent thought of any of your brothers anywhere. You should want to bless them in return, out of gratitude. You need not know them individually, or they you. The light is so strong that it radiates throughout the Sonship and returns thanks to the Father for radiating His joy upon it. Only God’s holy children are worthy channels of His beautiful joy, because only they are beautiful enough to hold it by sharing it. It is impossible for a child of God to love his neighbor except as himself. That is why the healer’s prayer is:

 

‘Let me know this brother as I know myself.’ “

Chapter 5, “Healing and Wholeness”. A Course in Miracles. Volume 1

 

 

 

 

For every dream of yours you have the tools…

A moment ago I read this from the blog of Paulo Coelho.

 

“Our dream, the desire that is in our soul, did not come out of nowhere.
Someone placed it there.
And that Someone, who is pure love and wants only our happiness, did so only because he also gave us the tools to realize our dreams and our desires.”

(The rest can be found on  http://paulocoelhoblog.com/2013/01/11/our-dream-2/)

My soul took a breath for a moment with this beautiful reminder. It seems that January has started in full force. The rest and break the holiday afforded has refreshed us and propelled us into many new endeavors on top of all the projects we were already doing. For me, I love it. There is something that is always comforting about the fact when I am doing a lot, and doing that which my soul has whispered for me to do for years. It makes me focus on the necessary, and when I focus on the necessary, then I sense the efficiency of nature coursing through me. I feel that I am being an instrument for good and joy in the world.

As Paulo Coelho reminds us, the ideas and dreams that we have come to us for a reason. They were planted in us, intentionally and with full purpose. And just like any good gardener, this Someone does not just let the seed have to fend for its own water and sunshine and nutrients. All that is needed for the dream to grow and fruit is provided – we already or will have the tools to accomplish our growth and soul’s work. While you have to do your part of allowing the essence and path of the seed take place, we are all given all that we need to accomplish what is being asked of us.

So often when we sense a calling, a dream, a desire of the soul, we hesitate. We think of all the other things that are urgent and necessary and that take up so much of our time. Yet the truth is that the easy fulfillment of this desire is before you. You have all the resources, all the tools, that you need to “hammer” it out. Your life, your experiences, the hidden tools you already possess will make themselves apparent and useful.

So what?

So don’t delay! There is no time like the present. There won’t be “more” time later. There will be the same crunch. The same hesitation. The same “overwhelm”.

Today, instead, lets change our focus. Let’s see the wealth of resources before us – even if it’s the five minutes we drive in the car alone that allow us to make a phone call, or the extra $100 that you can spend on doing that which you thought of doing years ago to spread a message you believe in. Perhaps its the fact that you have paper and a pen (resources that not many people have). Perhaps its a gift of music, or inspiration that you can offer someone. Perhaps its an excel spreadsheet where you can lay out a plan. While this spiritual truth of having all the tools needed to realize our dream is true of everyone, it is only bestowed on those who realize it. Pause. Breathe deeply. See the depth of resources before you and within you. And recognize how you and your life are perfectly aligned to the accomplishment of that which you think is “too good to be true”.

True Delight in Others Success

Today was a great day! The day stands out among the rest because there were multiple huge successes for people I know and care about. I had chills at the perfection of the day. Most of all, I had the best time celebrating the good fortune of others.
It’s hard to describe the sense of pure joy you get when you are truly excited for someone. You jump and scream and congratulate and are left humming, knowing that the good that transpired today will change their future forever in wonderful ways. For the first time in a while I felt that these successes were truly my own as well. I was just as excited, if not more, to hear the news.
This I am starting to understand is the true meaning of delighting in others. It’s days like today when I know we are all one. Their joy is my joy! What a wonderful way to live.

The Last of this Year’s Visitors- God

A standard was set tonight for what I would consider an ideal New Year’s Eve. Set out to the yoga ashram just outside of town there was to be a three hour ushering of the new ear and celebration of the last year in the yoga yurt complete with direct intention setting, Kirtan, or sacred chanting, meditation for world peace and a fire ceremony. It sounded sacred. It sounded fun It sounded perfect. Yet Drew didn’t care to go and no matter how perfect an evening we were invited to for me it is a no brainier that it would have been a horrible night without him.
I got my perfect evening, though, and was taught at the perfect moment how God will always come to you.
It began by watching a particular a movie that I rented that opened my eyes and, most importantly my heart, to the pain, the disruptive mess and wars abroad. It was a stark contrast to my life, the safety I take for granted and the innocent bubble I can and do create for myself by not watching the news or reading the papers. Although what I watched was fiction, just the thought that such happens abroad and domestically is enough to shake me awake. I saw and could swim in the millions of blessings I experience on a daily basis. Above all, I saw the need for peace and I prayed a true prayer for peace for all people. I prayed that everyone would be given the freedom, the safety and the love the needed to lead their lives. I prayed that all should be as blessed as I have been.
But this was not to end the evening. God came to my door, not ready for me to settle out the year quite yet. After undressing for the day, stripping off the hundreds of dollars of clothes I had just bought today, a man knocked. We thought it was fireworks at first. But then we heard how it was at our door. Drew answered and it was a man who a few weeks ago came around on a Sunday afternoon asking for work and food. I had given him a fresh loaf of bread and he came back, at 10:30 tonight to see if we had any more to spare. Although we didn’t have bread we gave him some crackers and food we did have. Yet it was a few minutes later that all the pieces came together. I couldn’t help but look at and see the need too that exists in our own town, on our own front porch. There were knocks on the door and on my heart.
There have been a few nights over the past couple of years where I have dreamed of using our resources to help those who need it. I have laid awake in bed running over the details and strategies of allowing homeless people use our backyard, water and firewood. I have written out and thought time and time again of somehow using the small yet powerful skill I have learned of making bread to help others and improve the lives of those who we know and don’t. Yet it wasn’t until tonight that I felt what I dare say was a call. Without a doubt, just as He planned the man to ask for bread, my heart to be awakened and compassionate, He too planted the Divine Thought and connection in my mind. This man came asking for bread. And what did I see? I saw God on my front porch saying, “Yes. It’s time. Make bread. Fill the hungry with food and work. Give what you can and what I am asking of you, so you can become who you are.”
It didn’t take a yurt or chanting or a fire ceremony for me to find God tonight. He came to me. He found me. And this is how I enter the New Year. On my knees. Head to the ground and in awe of the good and the hard, with a prayer asking for strength to carry me and you through the work before us.

True Christmas Gifts

I recently heard Cheryl Richardson advise us all on becoming comfortable with “wanting something when we know or understand it’s not our time to have it”. This is a powerful idea. Can we sit and become comfortable with our own wanting?
I think this is pertinent around this holiday season when we are asked what we “want” in a material sense, and then are asked at New Years what we are resolved to committing to in order to get rid if other wants. It’s a time when we are face to face with the exchange between us all. We can face it with anxiety, with hope, with love or peace, but time an time again we are thrown back into the wanting.
Starting seven years ago every Christmas what I really wanted was a miracle. I wanted the Spirit to fix a wound that hurt us all in my family. I wanted this more than any present imaginable. I asked every year for this miracle and not only around Christmas and yesterday it happened.
Wrapped nicely in a 3 word text, “He did it” the Christmas gift I have asked for with my heart and soul came just a few days early.
It’s hard to describe the fulfillment one has after a seven year wait, but to be perfectly honest the gift came a while ago. The gift came when I became peaceful with the wanting. This year I did not pray and plead for this gift. While my desire for goodwill, health and all good things for my family is still very much with me, I am comfortable with it. God heard my prayers. He got the request from me the very first time my heart ached for it and I asked for it. It was coming, it has come. It’s just on His time. It was this Christmas that was meant to get this gift of fulfillment. The six before have us other important things- patience, faith, a recognition of love, joy in the unseen, detachment of the material, strength in family, release of wanting. I can see so clearly now how it was these other gifts with this year’s answered prayer that constitutes my Divine wealth- that which is unshakable despite circumstances and appearances. It is with these gifts that I have been truly blessed and been given things I didn’t even know I needed much more than my own prayers. This is the Christmas miracle- not that my prayer was answered- they always are- but in the mist of our many year long dialogue I was given Life.

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In Advent this is the week dedicated to Joy. A whole week where we consciously, prayerfully and merrily seek to find the bliss of being alive- fully alive. Yet I know pastors everywhere struggled to incorporate such joy with the sorrows of the news as we all did ourselves. How can you live in both […]

I Believe the Unbelievable

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I believe the unbelievable, not because it’s wishful, but because it’s spiritual truth. If we depend upon our own minds too much then there is no room for God to come in and adjust our limited perspectives. We do not know everything. We cannot see everything and must acknowledge our limits and depend on the All-Knowing to alter us, surprise and and leave us in awe. I repeat to myself, “I believe the unbelievable” because it is my invitation to God to show me His presence and power in days when I trust too much on the things I see around me. I believe the unbelievable because I believe in God and I believe in Life and its endless and boundless abilities and Forms. I believe the unbelievable because I am honest and believe in the Truth.