Saturday, December 31, 2016
I have had the honor of working with many people of all ages and backgrounds over the years. I always keep in mind that the objective of my working with them is their growth and development not my own. My objective is to serve their needs, an idea expressed nicely by Walsch when he commented that "A true Master is not the one with the most students, but the one who creates the most Masters. A true leader is not the one with the most followers, but the one who creates the most leaders. A true king is not the one with the most subjects, but the one who leads the most to royalty. A true teacher is not the one with the most knowledge, but the one who causes the most others to have knowledge." The other idea I keep in mind is that "a master craftsman leaves no trace", meaning if they do well and think I had nothing to do with it, I have done my job well.
Thursday, December 29, 2016
During the past twenty-eight year of my disability I have encountered and overcome many difficulties and when in the midst of those problems I certainly did not recognize them as gifts or see any benefits. At this point I can see that because of those difficulties I am much further along in my spiritual journey. I am reminded of the comment by Walsch, that "each circumstance is a gift, and in each experience is hidden a treasure." For example, I found many years ago that I could use deep meditation to overcome the chronic pain and some of the spasticity of my disability so I do. I now use the same meditation for many things.
Tuesday, December 27, 2016
I have moved from Arizona to Maryland and I am poised to be of service to the people in this area. As far as I can tell, what seems right is to settle in to this house and establish myself in this area while also being a quiet but positive presence of love, connection and forgiveness. That’s enough for right now. In the words of De Mello "God weaves perfect designs with the threads of our lives," he said. "Even with our sins. We can’t see this because we’re looking at the reverse side of the tapestry." Using prayer, meditation and contemplation I can discern what is right for me today.
Monday, December 26, 2016
Today I exercised, grocery shopped for the week, sanded a developing bread board, cleaned toilets, did a load of laundry and assisted with dinner. I felt tremendous gratitude throughout remembering that in 1988 I was in much worse shape and could not have done any of those things. I had just been diagnosed with a chronic, progressive neurological disorder and told I would never improve, but continue to worsen. I owe my partial recovery to holistic healing and unconditional love. In the words of St. Faustina "Neither graces, nor revelations, nor raptures, nor gifts granted to a soul make it perfect, but rather the intimate union of the soul with God [love]."
Sunday, December 25, 2016
Today was Christmas, a day to celebrate Christ’s birth, which I do. Having spent a good part of the day socializing and talking about technology, food, work, cars and weather I have to admit that I feel lost since those things mean little to me. I keep talking about, living and contemplating love, connection, eternity and the Absolute. I am reminded of the words of Thomas H. Green, S.J. "The life of prayer is perhaps the most mysterious dimension of all human experience. We come to be at home with a God we cannot see. We discover that it is only by giving ourselves away totally that we truly come to possess ourselves, that we are most free when most surrendered. We begin to realize that light is darkness and darkness light. We become lost in a trackless desert — and then, if we persevere despite our disorientation, we begin to realize that it is only being lost, in losing ourselves, that we are found. The whole of our life and not just our prayer life, becomes a paradox, an apparent contradiction concealing and revealing a deeper truth, because we begin to realize that we must live as we pray".
Saturday, December 24, 2016
Given my comments and the quote from Mother Teresa yesterday, I have to say that I even love our president elect. I delight in his antics and comments, realizing at the same time that he is in a position to cause a great deal of hurt and even destroy the planet. He has done and continues to truly stir things up causing a tremendous backlash of love and connection. He is certainly "unreasonable, illogical and self-centered", at times, as I have been. My hope is that the backlash of love and connection will prevail in the end. Love is, after all is said and done, much more powerful than fear.
Friday, December 23, 2016
A couple of days ago I spoke of myself as being an "old man", which I am (68). I also commented that I’m "not nearly as old as I hope to become" and, by today’s standard, I’m not that old anyway. At any rate I have been "up, down and around" a few times. I have done many silly, hurtful, very human things while trying to do my best. Given that, I am not likely to judge anyone. I have long appreciated the comment by Mother Theresa, that "People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered; Forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; Be kind anyway. If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true; Succeed anyway. If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you; Be honest and frank anyway. What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight; Build anyway. If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous; Be happy anyway. Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough; Give the world the best you’ve got anyway. You see, in the final analysis, It never was between you and them anyway.
Wednesday, December 21, 2016
I am now an old man, though not nearly as old as I hope to become. I have accomplished many things, hoping that they would fulfil me. Nothing did until I found out about prayer, meditation, unconditional love and the eternal Absolute. I now identify with the comment made by Thomas Dubay, S. M. When he wrote "The unending yearnings of the human spirit are satisfied by nothing that can be measured, seen, heard or touched. To focus selfishly on anything in the created order is to be restricted and thus to fall that far short of full freedom." I have found peace and fulfillment.
The other day I spoke of viewing "the world’s events through the Absolute lense of unconditional love", which I do. I have spent the last couple of days involved in the final preparations for moving in to my new home, with Maria. As usual, I have been meditating and contemplating a lot and I feel a strong sense of rightness and peace around the move. My feeling is described very nicely by Dubay, S.M’s. comment that "He should learn to remain in God’s presence with a loving attention and a tranquil intellect", even though this seems like idleness to him. Soon he will find little by little that a "divine calm and peace with a wondrous, sublime knowledge of God, enveloped in divine love, will be infused into his soul", a good feeling.
Sunday, December 18, 2016
Maria and I attended the Friend’s annual Christmas pageant, a nativity celebration put on by children of various ages, very moving. During much of the ceremony I felt the powerful presence of the loving force I call God. As Dubay, S.M. puts it "A mystical touch is a deep, intimate contact-union-experience of God in one of His attributes such as power, light, goodness, beauty, or joy." I was reminded of a similar feeling and experience I had many years ago while attending a Native American Sundance ceremony, also very moving. I doubt that I will forget either experience and I feel deeply grateful for each.
Saturday, December 17, 2016
Today was a quiet day, a day of freezing rain, ice, staying indoors, resting and meditating. During my meditation I was very aware of how different my outlook on life is from that of most people. I view the world’s events through the Absolute lense of unconditional love, meaning I can be at peace and enjoy the antics going on around me, while also seeing their self destructive nature or recognizing that we are destroying the planet. The fact is that I have done many foolish things in my life and now choose differently. In many ways we are all kids in a sandbox learning to be decent, loving humans.
Friday, December 16, 2016
For me the highlights of the last couple of days have been the periods of connection before, after and during the Friend’s and recovery meetings. This time of year I do not by gifts, cards or support the commercial aspects of the season. I do support the love and connection aspect now and through the year. I am also involved in unpacking boxes and setting up our new kitchen - trivial but enjoyable.
Thursday, December 15, 2016
Maria and I have now had the big items moved into our new home and we are now unpacking boxes. The technicians come on Monday to hook up our computer to the internet and set us up with a land-line phone. So, the final actions of the moving in process are finally happening. On the one hand I will be very glad to leave our current living situation at my mother-in-law’s house. I want my privacy, quiet, solitude and my own office and kitchen. On the other hand I will miss the family atmosphere and constantly being around my ninety-one year old mother-in-law. It’s good to have mixed feelings and it is time to move on.
Wednesday, December 14, 2016
For the last several years because of age and life experience, I have changed in the direction of love and spirituality. The change I have gone through was described very well by His Holiness The Dalai Lama when he wrote "Spirituality I take to be concerned with those attitudes of the human spirit----such as love and compassion, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, contentment, a sense of responsibility, a sense of harmony----which bring happiness to self and others.......Thus spiritual practice according to this description involves, on the one hand, acting out of concern for others’ well being. On the other hand it entails transforming ourselves so that we become more readily disposed to do so." The change has led to a wonderful life which I wish to share.
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
As are many people, I am concerned about what I see in the world in general and this country in particular. There is a lot of fear, hurt, violence, ego, emphasis on short term gain and denial of warnings. I am passionate about love as a force that could turn things around. "If you can rise above the fear in your life and live the love within you, and if I can rise above my fear and live the love in me-----if that drama is reenacted enough times by enough of the world’s people-----then we will pierce the cosmic darkness and tip the world in the direction of light" (Williamson).
Monday, December 12, 2016
"Every circumstance------no matter how painful-----is a gauntlet thrown down by the universe, challenging us to become who we are capable of being" (Williamson). Inside each of us is a seed - that small quiet voice, the Love or God seed. It is time to nurture and develop that seed, that is what circumstances are calling us to do. I plan to answer that call by doing everything I can. Because of life circumstances, I have been developing that seed for years and I will continue.
Sunday, December 11, 2016
The technological and scientific advances of the past decades are certainly exciting, engaging and distracting. However, by themselves they do not lead to a peaceful, serene and well balanced life. They are not a complete picture of what will lead us out of a life of stress. I strongly believe what Williamson says, that "The world we want for ourselves and our children will not emerge from electronic speed but rather from a spiritual stillness that takes root in our souls." The sort of approach to life that I write about in my book "Three Simple Questions: Being in the World, But Not of It. My approach is based on three questions to consider when planning any sort of activity. The questions are: would I do this in front of God, or whatever you call that power/force?; is my name really on it or is it really my responsibility?; will this increase the integrity of the universe, or is this loving? I wrote and published the book as part of my effort to change the world in the direction of being peaceful, serene and balanced through increased spirituality.
Saturday, December 10, 2016
I had commented many times that "time is an illusion", meaning it is really just an agreement we have all made to act as if it is linear and sequential. Then one day, several years ago I placed myself in a position where I would be killed - in that instant I was jerked out of the time-space continuum and placed nearby out of harms way. I was traumatized and no-one around me was aware of the shift. At that moment I knew the truth of what I had been saying. Since then I have become aware that "The great scientific minds in physics, including Albert Einstein, Richard Feynman, and Stephen Hawking, have theorized that time is actually timeless." (Borg) I wonder in what other ways we are fooling ourselves.
Friday, December 9, 2016
According to Borg I am a spirit person, meaning that I have "an experiential awareness of the reality of God." I am not sure how it happened but I am aware of God/love in everything I do and say, an indescribable feeling. One fact that I have come to understand is that it makes no difference what name you use or no name at all - the love is still there. I have a deep understanding of another of his comments, that "Finally, the image of Jesus as a spirit person has implications for how we think of the Christian life. It shifts the focus of the Christian life from believing in Jesus or believing in God to being in relationship to the same spirit that Jesus knew. It is the claim that I emphasized at the end of chapter 1 and that will emerge yet again in this book: that the Christian life moves beyond believing in God to being in relationship to God."
I have commented before that I conduct my daily activities within a "bubble of love". I also rely on daily on the healing powers of the plenum or loving force of God, which seems to have a very positive impact on my health. I believe very strongly that "Without the healing power of the numinous realm, our wounded psychological patterns will prevail." (Conrow Coelho). Meaning for me that I would not be doing nearly as well as I am.
Thursday, December 8, 2016
Quantum field theory seems to be where modern reductive science and spirituality meet. Love can be considered as a force within that field that then has an influence on the particles of everyday life. Mary Conrow Coelho refers to that field or space between particles as the "plenum" and then comments that "it might be proposed, in addition, that the plenum has powers and modes of influence within the manifest world, influences that are experienced in subjective ways that are not the subject of science. These various attributes may include what we, subjectively, recognize as numinosity, an alluring quality often experienced as love and powers of healing and centering (through the ordering of the Self/Soul) as well as creativity ---- qualities of experience some religious thinkers have attributed to God." I have certainly seen evidence of this influence in the physical healing I and others near me have experienced. I make use of this numinosity on a daily basis.
Tuesday, December 6, 2016
Today I momentarily forgot the words of Sogyal Rinpoche when he wrote "Listening is a far more difficult process than most people imagine; really to listen in the way that is meant by the masters is to let go utterly of ourselves, to let go of all the information, all of the concepts, all the ideas and all the prejudices that our heads are stuffed with." My ego wants me and my ideas to be right, in spite of the fact that they are wrong. That part of me makes it hard to listen. Fortunately I did not speak or take action, but the thoughts were there. Now it’s time to quietly contemplate.
Monday, December 5, 2016
I began the day by making several calls to service providers in order to change their record of my address. This was a difficult and challenging process, especially interacting with computers and my speech impediment. I do pretty well as long as I place my speaking difficulties right up front and simply accept the challenge whether talking to a person or computer. It was also important that I knew when to quit and begin the simplicity of yard work. A difficult day but successful.
Sunday, December 4, 2016
The magic of publicly responding to fear and violence with Love and prayer has been quite evident recently. The most obvious are some of the responses to racist or terrorist attacks, some responses to the rhetoric of the president-elect and possible changes in the route of the Dakota pipeline. I have also seen the power of Love in my own life - my life depends on it. As Sri Nisargadata said "Love says ‘I am everything.’ Wisdom says, ‘I am nothing.’" Living in Light and Love feels right and true. It’s a joy to be alive.
Saturday, December 3, 2016
In my opinion, acting according to the Love and peace of the true Self that I have spoken about for the last couple of days is the best way to defuse or calm virtually any life situation. This includes situations like are going on at Standing Rock or potential problems coming from the decisions of our president-elect. Behaving in that way requires strength and focus but responding to fear and violence with love can change things, is magical. Living within that Love has changed me and it can change the world.
Friday, December 2, 2016
As I commented yesterday "The true Self, the "I am" within me and every person has power strength and wisdom." The Self is eternal and rooted in the Absolute of Love, not the drama, fear and anxiety of everyday life. It is the part of each of us that is connected to the Source, Love or God. I find it possible to reach that part of me through meditation and then I can live that part during the day if I keep my focus there. If I do that I go through my life with a sense of love, peace and enjoyment.
Thursday, December 1, 2016
As Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj says "Get to know that "I am" without words which arises in the morning. Knowing the Self, abiding in the Self-knowledge, is not a mere intellectual knowing. You must be that, and you should not move away from it. Remain firm." The true Self, the "I am" within me and every person has power strength and wisdom. It started out with me as "that small quiet voice", which I usually ignored. That voice got louder the more I listened to it, usually through meditation. At the present time I know that Self but still find it easy to become lost in one of the many distractions (T.V., internet, the drama of life, etc.) provided every day.
Wednesday, November 30, 2016
I lead a life based on love or light, which comes from a source I call God. It seems important to know that the love or light does not come from me. That love or light is a force which can change the world, as it has changed me. This reality is summarized very nicely in the words of Dillard: "I cannot cause light [love]; the most I can do is try to put myself in the path of its beam. It is possible, in deep space, to sail on solar wind. Light [Love], be it particle or wave, has force: you rig a giant sail and go. The secret of seeing is to sail on solar wind. Hone and spread your spirit till you yourself are a sail, whetted, translucent, broadside to the merest puff."
Tuesday, November 29, 2016
I have developed the habit of getting up, contemplating, praying and meditating between twelve and one in the morning, then staying up at times until four. I also do my best writing and reading between those hours. At around four I begin some deep meditation or "zoning", which resembles sleep. At that quiet time I feel most connected to God and my true being, a sacred time for me. When I was working full time it was five then four. As I worked less my getting up spontaneously got earlier. I have heard something similar from other spiritual seekers and leaders. "In the stillness, you will find your true being. In the silence you will hear the breathing of your soul ---- and of God.
"I have told you many times, and I tell you here again: You will find Me in the stillness."
"I have told you many times, and I tell you here again: You will find Me in the stillness."
Monday, November 28, 2016
Today I have been dealing with pain, which I do quite differently than most people. In this case it is lower back, nerve pain and minor sciatica. Rather than taking medication to reduce or eliminate the pain so I can continue whatever activity I was involved in, I purposely avoid taking medication so that I can "listen" to the pain and act accordingly, usually halting the behavior that I was doing and that caused the pain. I was doing a lot of raking and other strenuous activity and the pain was telling me to slow down, take it easy and get more in touch with my emotions (fear of possible outcomes after the election, in this case). As a result my behavior changes and the pain diminishes, going from a 4 or 5 to a 2.
Sunday, November 27, 2016
On the one hand I fully recognize the problems and disaster that we could be approaching with our president elect. When I focus on that I feel the fear of anticipation - my human side - and it is important for my balance to be aware of that feeling. On the other hand, through my meditation I feel the Absolute of unconditional love and know that everything is just perfect. That is my God or love side and is the other side of the balance. "Once you’ve had such a magnificent experience, it can be very difficult to go back to "real life" in a way that blends well with what other people are calling "reality". That is because your reality has shifted. It has become something else. It has expanded, grown. And it cannot be shrunk again. It’s like trying to get the genie back in the bottle. It can’t be done."
Saturday, November 26, 2016
I spoke a few days ago about Thanksgiving as a time of connection. I have realized through my recovery process and life experiences over the last decades that I am connected energetically and emotionally to everything and everyone. Daily, being aware of that connection is a wonderful experience or, as Walsch puts it "The highest feeling is the experience of unity with All That Is. This is the great return to Truth for which the soul yearns. This is the feeling of perfect love." Within that feeling it is impossible to treat other people or the earth in a destructive manner.
Friday, November 25, 2016
Today was what is called "black Friday", a day of retail sales and marketing which marks a day that stores move into the black as far as sales. I consider it as a day to avoid going shopping! I prefer to go into a store, buy what I need and leave, a process I call "buying not shopping". That sounds trivial, but I choose to participate in activities that do not disturb the peace within that I feel. I recall a comment by God in one of Walsch’s books "If you believe the noises of the world rather than the silences of your soul, you will be lost."
Thursday, November 24, 2016
As expected this was a day of connecting with individuals from the family of my wife, gratifying and tiring. I noted that most of them are very good at talking about nothing, meaning sports, weather and jobs, socializing. This talk is something I was never good at. I did manage to take advantage of quiet, alone times with each of them to begin talking about deeper personal subjects and beam love at them. At these times I noted that it made them very uncomfortable and that they wanted to return to simpler topics, which we did. It was a very good day.
Wednesday, November 23, 2016
During my recovery meeting today I was reminded that this is a time of family, love and gratitude. I have experienced many losses in my life and finally realized that most of my losses were just part of the process of becoming who I am today - a person I am pleased with and proud. Many years ago, during the four years I was still on crutches a person asked "How can you be grateful, you can’t even walk" and I replied "You can’t fly and it doesn’t bother you!". Meaning, if I accept my condition, I can be grateful.
Tuesday, November 22, 2016
I frequently wake up in the morning with a feeling of dread, in part due to my own anxiety disorder and in part due to these stressful, chaotic times. To get past the anxiety to a feeling of love and well being I begin the day with a period of cardio exercise, using an exercise bike. I begin by feeling and releasing the anxiety and finally, by the end of the exercise, feeling peace and love. I think of the words of St. John of the Cross "He should learn to remain in God’s presence with a loving attention and a tranquil intellect", even though this seems like idleness to him. Soon he will find little by little that a "divine calm and peace with a wondrous, sublime knowledge of God, enveloped in divine love, will be infused into his soul".
Monday, November 21, 2016
I have many imaginings about what my role and activities will look like in MD. We moved here from AZ in response to a spiritual need that we sensed, a "calling". Having arrived in MD and purchased a home, I have worked on that home (mostly the yard), meditated, communicated with the spirits here, communicated with the people and explored life in the Eastern U.S. My communications and finding out about the people here have revealed things I did not expect, would not have imagined. The imaginings I mentioned in the first sentence are rooted in my past and the things I know. Behaving according to those imaginings could restrict my activities here and limit my usefulness. Forgetting those imaginings and simply being open and listening would be better in determining my role here. It is time to meditate!
Sunday, November 20, 2016
I have had many fears about the life that awaits me in MD, having moved from AZ. I feared what challenges I would face and what I would be called upon to do, as if having fear would help or protect me. Today during an encounter group with some Friend’s (Quakers) I commented that fear was hollow and has no substance, while love has depth and is a genuine force. The fact is that fear speaks within and with a loud voice. However, if I face the fear, act lovingly and simply go about my day, the fear evaporates. At the same time love grows and spreads. As I sit and write this tonight I think "can it possibly be that simple?". Yes
On the eleventh I commented that I generally had the options of responding to a given situation as a mature, loving adult or a hurt and angry child. Today I felt like the hurt and angry child though I did not lash out, other than expressing frustration. I have been inconvenienced because of a computer problem that has been going on every few days for close to two months. The situation was made worse by my poor communication skills. It even sounds trivial as I write that! I need to remember that "noting matters very much, and most things don’t matter at all".
Friday, November 18, 2016
Daily I feel and live within a very strong and unconditional love for everything and everyone, an attitude that arises through my relationship with the force I call God. Life is also very difficult for me, being older, disabled and having a speech impediment. I work constantly to balance the two - my challenge. Just the same, it is a wonderful life. I find myself wishing that others could experience the love and peace that I feel. That love and peace requires focus, concentration and de-emphasizing the importance of the recent worldly accomplishments, enjoying them but not believing in them, a way of life I suggest in my book.
Thursday, November 17, 2016
Today and ever since the election I have been reflecting on lessons contained in the movie "Avatar". In that movie people with short term financial interests wanted to take over the planet, Pandora. The residents of that planet had a very spiritual and connected way of life, honoring everything and everyone on the planet. The residents had a very special relationship with a particular tree they called the "home tree". At one point one of the potential invaders commented that "it’s just a tree" and later in the movie destroyed it. The residents then threw the invaders off of the planet. Thinking of the movie as a metaphor and Earth as our Pandora, we did not throw the invaders off of the planet - we put them in charge of it, with the expected consequences. As I point out in my book, the spiritual life requires focus but is also magical, like Pandora.
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
Yesterday my wife, Maria, got upset with me for being to abrupt, even harsh, which she took as personal criticism. I definitely was overly abrupt, though my behavior was a result of my own frustration over my poor communication and not directed at her. I kept thinking of a phrase that I have heard in recovery meetings "if I am not at fault, there is no solution". I modified my behavior to be more pleasant. Today we dealt with a difficult bureaucracy (M.V.A.!) and I maintained a pleasant, less abrupt attitude for which she commended me. My challenge now is to keep it up.
Monday, November 14, 2016
Today I became lost, frustrated and angry because of my efforts and eventual failure to navigate through technology, supposed technological advances. This condition is short-term, trivial and will pass shortly but is increasingly common in a world that is becoming more technological and lacking the love I mentioned yesterday and speak of in my book. On the other hand there was the young man who stopped to offer me help this afternoon, the laughter of the plumber who fixed my toilet and the love of my wife. This was a day of contrasting options and my choice is obvious.
Sunday, November 13, 2016
I am not very political since politics does not meet the need, nor is it responsive to the general public. I care, very passionately, about all people and this earth that supports us. Recent events in this country are and have been very reactive and fear-based, an approach that I used with limited success for many years. I now use a love-based approach, which I explain in my book, Three Simple Questions: Being in the World, But Not of It. My approach is based on three questions to consider when planning any sort of activity. The questions are: would I do this in front of God, or whatever you call that power/force?; is my name really on it or is it really my responsibility?; will this increase the integrity of the universe, or is this loving? I wrote and published the book as part of my effort to change the world.
Saturday, November 12, 2016
It is clear to me that the world is in need of healing and that it will come about through loving responses like the second option I spoke of yesterday. Lashing out and being angry is easy, being loving is not. However, "My experience is that the second option feels a great deal better and adds to the integrity of the universe. It is also my experience that acting out of love causes others to do the same." Love is a force and it spreads.
Friday, November 11, 2016
In my case it is quite clear that I have a choice between two potential approaches to most situations, and that the two responses are quite different. The first option is to act as if I am a hurt and angry child and in that case my response is likely to be some form of lashing out at the person or situation. The second option is to take the approach of a loving, compassionate, empathic adult and in that case my response is likely to be constructive and supportive. The various video clips suggest that our president elect has both sides as well. My experience is that the second option feels a great deal better and adds to the integrity of the universe. It is also my experience that acting out of love causes others to do the same.
People on all sides of the political spectrum are expressing anger which is actually rooted in fear and hurt. The fear and hurt is frequently caused by either some form of oppression or the fact that, economically, they are not doing well, both quite understandable. This was clearly expressed in the recent election and can result in violence and divisiveness if a person remains at the level of anger and its expression. On the other hand, if we can focus on the hurt and fear at the root of the anger, we can address the anger with love and compassion. If we focus on the anger we are likely to stay angry. However if we focus on the fear and hurt we may come to a resolution.
Wednesday, November 9, 2016
Since the election I have seen strong expressions of fear, anger, love, compassion, togetherness, concern about the environment and a "wait-and-see attitude. We need the love and healing. I like the approach suggested by Walsch several years ago "Embrace every circumstance, own every fault, share every joy, contemplate every mystery, walk in every man’s shoes, forgive every offense (including your own), heal every heart, honor every person’s truth, adore every person’s God, protect every person’s rights, preserve every person’s dignity, promote every person’s interests, provide every person’s needs, presume every person’s holiness, present every person’s greatest gifts, produce every person’s blessing, and pronounce every person’s future secure in the assured love of God."
Tuesday, November 8, 2016
Today was election day so I did my exercising, voted, went shopping and set aside a lot of quiet time to reflect on recent events. I would like to see changes in this country in the direction of love, inclusiveness and connection as I describe in my website and book. I see evidence that these attitudes are supported by the people but not the political process. In fact the political process promotes the opposite while paying lip service to love, inclusiveness and connection. Regardless of who wins, the country will need some healing after this election.
Monday, November 7, 2016
Maria and I attended a special meeting of the Friend’s on this evening before the presidential election. The reason was the anxiety, accusations and chaos this election season has caused. Several people in the meeting spoke of the need for us all to be models of love, peace, well-being and acceptance, "The Light" as Quakers like to call it. I was thinking the same. Regardless of who wins the election the populous will need a greater feeling of love, peace, well-being and acceptance since this election season has been so divisive.
Sunday, November 6, 2016
I went to a Friend’s meeting this morning and, as I usually do, I spent most of the hour of silent worship broadcasting love, peace, well-being and acceptance, "The Light" as Quakers like to call it. The people and spirits in that meeting seem to be responding with greater depth of worship and the words they say. My wife and a couple of other people know I am doing that and tell me it is making a difference. One person even commented that she was channeling "Charlie energy". My contribution feels right at this time.
Saturday, November 5, 2016
As various spiritual leaders have pointed out and I agree, we have incarnated and are here to learn and grow in love. This process is sometimes hard to discern but as Williamson puts it "We will be given every opportunity to learn through joy, and when we deny ourselves that, we will learn through pain. But we will learn." I can see the reality of this in my life. I have learned and grown through many painful situations and I now choose to learn through joy, a much lighter touch.
Friday, November 4, 2016
Maria is sick with a gut virus so I, once again, went to the new house by myself. I had another simple day without chaotic, anxiety producing news reports and doing simple things like gardening. While doing simple, basic things I feel love, gratitude and connection. I keep in mind the words of Meister Eckhart; "A man should receive God in all things and train his mind to keep God ever present in his mind, in his aims and in his love. Note how you regard God: keep the same attitude that you have in church or in your cell, and carry it with you in the crowd and in unrest and inequality.....In your acts you should have an equal mind and equal faith and equal love for your God.....If you were equal-minded in this way, then no man could keep you from having God ever present.".
Thursday, November 3, 2016
Today was simple, quiet and peaceful - very pleasant. I went to our new but still vacant house by myself today. I walked down to the lake to eat my lunch while also watching and greeting people as they strolled by. There is a path around the lake that people use for exercise. There were also three deer, one male and two females, that accompanied me as I walked. I then came back to do some weeding of our yard and gardening. All during the day I had feelings of gratitude and connection to everything and everybody. This was a good day.
Wednesday, November 2, 2016
In a recovery meeting today I found myself talking about the fact that when I go deeply enough into meditation or working with another all of my pain or disability "vanish", as I also mentioned yesterday. Early in my recovery process my mentor showed me that as Kopp says "The decisive step toward God consists of letting go of all worries, that is, all fears and attachments. This step requires a foundation of complete and unreserved trust. We can only release our fears in proportion to how much our trust in God has grown, deepened, and ripened into an unshakable faith. The more we abide in living faith, the more we abide in divine love. And where this is, there is no room for fear." or pain.
Tuesday, November 1, 2016
I did a healing for someone today and the feeling of heat and energy exchange was intense, causing me to sweat and breath heavily. I especially took note of the fact that whenever I do such an exchange, while working with someone else, all other concerns vanish from my thoughts and my focus is complete. It is an ability, a gift, for which I am extremely grateful. It feels like I am being a channel for a higher level source of energy. I choose to call that force God.
Monday, October 31, 2016
I have largely avoided the rancor, chaos and accusations of this election season since most of it is word-play and non of my business. However, I cannot and do not wish to avoid knowing something of what is going on since some knowledge is required for awareness. I keep in mind two quotes from St. John of the Cross; "He should learn to remain in God’s presence with a loving attention and a tranquil intellect, even though this seems like idleness to him. Soon he will find little by little that a divine calm and peace with a wondrous, sublime knowledge of God, enveloped in divine love, will be infused into his soul" and "Immersion in God entails a being filled with Him, a divine inflowing. Biblical men knew well enough that this self-communication of God is the sole destiny of men." I find both to be true and important at this time.
Sunday, October 30, 2016
Lately I have been very distracted and involved in moving and setting up a dwelling in MD, having moved from AZ, worldly concerns. That is what is on my plate right now and I wish to stay in the present. I also continue to write, contemplate and meditate several hours each day. I continue to attend recovery meetings and other spiritually oriented meetings several times a week. My balance point has shifted but I continue to focus on love, peace forgiveness, gratitude and connection. Life is good.
Saturday, October 29, 2016
I believe very strongly in the ultimate goodness of humanity, knowing that love is stronger than hate and that right is stronger than corruption. I support very passionately actions born of love, connection, respect, honor, etc. I see these actions every day in the people around me, neighbors or on the news - actions that fill me with emotion. These ideas and actions are supported by my book (Three Simple Questions: Being in the World, But Not of It), a book I self published as part of my effort to change the world. If they were universal these ideas and way of life could change the way we treat each other and this earth.
Friday, October 28, 2016
All the questions are still out there. I have no idea if I am following the right path, making the right decisions or know where the path will lead but I am acting out of love and doing my best so I suspect everything is fine. Today I feel good and figure that the force I call God is on my side. I feel the love and will go with that. I look at my life with a sense of wonder.
A day of contemplation, meditation and assessment of our current situation. I wonder if we should consider doing things differently, like modifying our plans to own and maintain our own home in light of my disability and inability to do the required maintenance. Difficult decisions! Meanwhile I planted some bulbs today and continue to do my best with what is presented to me each day. Life goes on.
Wednesday, October 26, 2016
Maria and I just returned from a few days of traveling up to visit in Pennsylvania, an intense few days. We took the opportunity to spread the message of love, peace and harmony to the spirits and people we encountered. That felt important and the least we could do. I am, of course, aware of my physical limitations, but, particularly during this trip, the limitations did not seem as important as my gifts and abilities. I am reminded of the comments of St. John of the Cross from some years ago "Speaking of touches, the delights they engender more than compensate for all the trials suffered in life, even though innumerable".
Sunday, October 23, 2016
Maria and I attended a half day Friend’s workshop on spiritual development today in which the subject of childhood came up numerous times. I was reminded of two things, the first being how difficult my childhood was and the second being that we are not our stories. I have learned about and now promote the power and importance of love, in spite of my difficulties and miss-direction in those early years. Several times, I found myself saying "What better way to learn about the importance and power of love than through the total absence of it".
Saturday, October 22, 2016
I lead a life which, to many people in the world, would appear privileged. Indeed being concerned about which house to buy or which neighborhood to live in would not even be in their radar for many people. Many of my other struggles like life and death or chronic pain are a concern for many. Therefore, conclusions or observations may not apply universally. In my life it is very clear that I have been carefully molded and taught about the power and importance of spirituality, love and connection. My belief is that these are things we ate all learning, each in a different way
Friday, October 21, 2016
Our new home is in Columbia, MD, which Maria, my wife, refers to as a "Zootopia for humans", meaning an ideal environment. It is indeed apparent that our neighbors realize in their actions that we are all connected, and that things like skin color don’t make much difference. One of our neighbors mentioned that all of the neighbors "look out for each other". There is also an obvious respect for the environment. Our house is also very nice and we just had the carpeting in three rooms replaced by wood floors, much better for my allergies. Most importantly the house and neighborhood look like a good place for me to experience solitude, nature, prayer, meditation, quiet and connection.
Thursday, October 20, 2016
Part of my disability is that I am overly reactive. This gets expressed in extreme reflexes and also extreme emotional reactions to life’s situations, both fueled by an exaggerated physiological (stress) response. I also have a long standing anxiety disorder, complicating the situation. The increased energy I mentioned two days ago add to the difficulty and, as I said at that time " The feeling/energy is intense and hard to cope with". I have not learned to deal with it yet and today I overreacted to a simple phone call and having Maria take the call. I need to keep in mind that "Nothing matters very much and very few things matter at all". Love and my relationship matter ........ the call does not.
Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Yesterday I spoke of the God/love energy that is within me and today I, once again, got in touch with that very human fear of becoming all I can be. The God/love part of me is "absolute" and only has the very positive feelings of unconditional love. On the other hand, I became aware that my human fears of my own capabilities and the world’s reaction to them are based on the ever changing, fragile dualities common to the human condition. By dualities I mean situations like the mixed or conflicted feelings of being my best and making people angry, jealous or envious. Today I could feel the difference of switching back and forth from the absolute of God/love to the dualities of being human. I am trying to allow both and balance them.
Tuesday, October 18, 2016
Today I was very aware of the increased God/love energy that is within me and results from prayer and performing actions that "feed" my love or God seed. The feeling/energy is intense and hard to cope with. I also keep thinking of the phrase "you’ll get used to it", that I was told many years ago. I’m definitely not used to it yet, though some of my activities help me deal with it. The activities that work best are actions like the dawn ceremony and blessings I do. In general it helps to do actions that "increase the integrity of the universe", like I mention in my book.
Monday, October 17, 2016
The last few days have been a time of working out worldly things like a new phone, shopping and working on our new house before moving in. For all of the activities Maria and I both focus on being a positive force in the interactions involved, even when the interactions are not going the way we planned. For example, yesterday I went to a dealer to get some service for my phone and nothing worked out so I laughed, joked and found out what I needed to do. I did those things today and took care of my phone. I was pleased with how I handled that situation since I got the job done and everyone felt good in the process. I contributed to the integrity of the universe.
Maria and I attended a Friend’s (Quaker) meeting this morning and, as usual, I chose not to speak. Maria and several others did speak briefly, having felt a calling to do so. I remained silent and instead blessed everyone there and radiated a powerful feeling of love, peace, joy, forgiveness and gratitude. I wondered why I felt no calling to speak, but later realized that it was more important for the people to feel the feeling s of "The Light" which I radiated, rather than any specific words I could have said.
Saturday, October 15, 2016
For me, in my life, love changes everything. The love I am speaking of is both a feeling and the actions due to that feeling, directed at everything and everybody. The feeling is an overwhelming mixture of gratitude, compassion, connection and joy. That love also includes the more negative emotions like jealousy and other forms of self-centered fear that seem to be part of the human condition. However, for me, those negative feelings are mere shadows in the presence of the positive ones. That feeling impacts my health, the way I treat my body, the way I treat everything and everybody else, the way I drive my car, etc.
Friday, October 14, 2016
I feel at peace right now in spite of the chaos and anxiety all around me in this time of leading up to the presidential election. The peace results from knowing that regardless of the outcome of the election, the earth and its inhabitants will be fine - in the eternal sense. We may go through an unpleasant period but ultimately life will be good. I feel confident in saying that because of my meditation on the subject as well as the fact that I have been through many hard times leading to a good life, in the present..
Thursday, October 13, 2016
Tonight Maria and I attended a Friend’s meeting. There were only five of us at the meeting. The meeting consisted of one hour of quiet meditation, allowing the presence of spirit, with one of us speaking very briefly. I used the time to invoke the spirit and bless everyone there including the unseen spirits in the church. Everyone felt the blessing and the strength of the presence of "The light", each in his or her own way. It was a very moving time for all of us.
Wednesday, October 12, 2016
In my book, Three Simple Questions: Being in the World, But Not of It, I present three questions to consider when planning any sort of activity. The questions are: would I do this in front of God, or whatever you call that power/force?; is my name really on it or is it really my responsibility?; will this increase the integrity of the universe, or is this loving? I also present several meditative and contemplative practices to help a person answer those questions. The practices I suggest are ones that I use, and they do indeed provide a great deal of guidance. There is also a level of uncertainty in what I suggest since there is no dogma or hard and fast rules. I keep in mind what Shepherd Hoodwin says that "Love has a quality you can learn to discern. It 'feels right'. It is truthful and inclusive. There is no objective measurement to confirm that you are experiencing love. You can only trust your intuition and do your best. If you do, your capacity to discern love will grow. We are all learning this skill."
Tuesday, October 11, 2016
I did take it easy today, cooking, writing, some exercise and a lot of meditation and contemplation. It felt very good and I feel good as a result. I did send out another "query" letter, trying to convince a literary agent to represent me. Overall, my life process feels right to me - but I have no idea where it will lead. The best I can do is to stay present and aware through meditation and contemplation.
Monday, October 10, 2016
I have been pushing myself to be more physically active, functional and less disabled, rather than giving in to my disability. The results have been positive overall and I am feeling more comfortable with being more active. However, today I over did it. I went shopping at an unfamiliar very large grocery that is on a corner between six and eight lane roads. I am not yet used to the crowds or driving here. I also did several hours of raking, weeding and general yard work. I will take it easy tomorrow. Being disabled it is important for me to be as active as possible, while also staying within my limitations.
Sunday, October 9, 2016
I attended the Sandy Spring Friend’s (Quaker) meeting this morning, a meeting that I find to be a tremendous source of strength. Various members mentioned the chaotic, negative and destructive actions that are going on in the world today saying that each of us can be a source of peace, love and healing in the face of the problems. They were speaking about what I refer to as the love or God seed in each of us and the fact that if we act out of that seed it will grow and spread. The result could be magical and magnificent. Like I said, I am a dreamer but as John Lennon said "I’m not the only one".
Saturday, October 8, 2016
Every morning recently I have spent some time watching a beautiful and colorful Marbled orb-weaving spider (Araneus marmoreus) which has been making her web near my front porch. She makes her web shortly after dawn each morning, attaching a single signal strand to the center of the web. She then retreats to some folded up leaves to hide for the day, patiently waiting for flying insects to be captured by her web. She keeps contact with the web through the signal strand in order to detect any captured insect. She is a good metaphor for me since she regularly puts a large amount of effort in order to make her web, having no idea what the outcome will be that day. She simply acts according to her nature, trusting in the outcome.
Friday, October 7, 2016
I would like to see everyone act according to the three questions that are the central focus of my book: (would I do this in front of God, or whatever you call that power/force?; is my name really on it or is it really my responsibility?; will this increase the integrity of the universe, or is this loving?). I would also like to see people act according to the knowledge that each of us is emotionally, physically and spiritually connected to everything and everyone else. To do so would mean an end to much of the chaos and destruction that is happening. I am a dreamer! The least I can do is "be the change I want to see in the world".
Thursday, October 6, 2016
In his book Ethics for the New Millennium, His Holiness The Dalai Lama calls for a spiritual revolution very similar to what I describe in my book, a fundamental shift in attitude. He suggests "Spirituality I take to be concerned with those attitudes of the human spirit----such as love and compassion, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, contentment, a sense of responsibility, a sense of harmony----which bring happiness to self and others.......Thus spiritual practice according to this description involves, on the one hand, acting out of concern for others’ well being. On the other hand it entails transforming ourselves so that we become more readily disposed to do so." He emphasizes the way we treat each other, while I include the entire planet, but the approach is similar.
Wednesday, October 5, 2016
A good day, I was able to act according to the three questions that are the central focus of my book: (would I do this in front of God, or whatever you call that power/force?; is my name really on it or is it really my responsibility?; will this increase the integrity of the universe, or is this loving?). I found myself being judgmental and angry at a person I was living with so I talked about it, laughed at myself, let it go and did not act on it. I also made several loving and supportive comments to people during the day.
Tuesday, October 4, 2016
Today I pushed myself physically, doing quite a bit more than this sixty-eight year old, disabled body is used to - good for me! I did some cleaning, walked down to the lake near our new home and did some yard work. Before becoming disabled, when performing physical activity my muscles would get tired but felt like they were working smoothly together. At this point my muscles always feel like they are quarreling with each other, more so when they get tired. Taking the physical activity and combining it with the fear and pain I have talked about recently, the result is that I am drained and exhausted - time to rest.
Sunday, October 2, 2016
Maria and I began doing some work on our new house in preparation for moving in. She prepared one room for replacing the carpet with wood and I did some cleaning, primarily in the kitchen. The work we did was very grounding while I also dealt with the existential fear of becoming all I can be. I welcome the fear, feel it (very unpleasant) and eventually I will let it go, but I am not there yet. The words of Williamson come to mind; "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us."
Saturday, October 1, 2016
Today I am dealing with pain, something that happens to me quite often. Pain, for me always has an emotional and often spiritual aspect as well as the physical reality. I’m not saying the pain is not real, hysterical or caused by me for emotional reasons. The physical basis of the pain can often be clearly shown as tissue inflammation or damage of some sort. What I am saying is that there is an emotional and often spiritual component as well. Using meditation and contemplation if I can find the emotional/spiritual root of the pain, that will promote healing of the physical aspect or, at least, reduce its impact on my life. Time to meditate.
Friday, September 30, 2016
We did a final "walk through" of our new house since the previous owners have now moved out. It is now time to have some work done and for us to do some work to make the house our own. This stage will involve switching the flooring in three rooms from carpet to wood (less dust!) and installing sturdy railings any place there are stairs, for my balance. There will be other jobs over time, "feathering the nest". This is a nice stage that feels like a gift - a pleasant place to live while we do the work of being of service to others.
Thursday, September 29, 2016
Two issues come to mind which occupied my thoughts today. The first is that, like it or not, I have a very close relationship with the force or entity I call God. That closeness causes my life to be very different from most people in that they can sense the love and knowingness which stems from that relationship. That closeness also carries the responsibility of acting accordingly. I identify strongly with Jesus and really like the comment by Borg that "Finally, the image of Jesus as a spirit person has implications for how we think of the Christian life. It shifts the focus of the Christian life from believing in Jesus or believing in God to being in relationship to the same spirit that Jesus knew. It is the claim that I emphasized at the end of chapter 1 and that will emerge yet again in this book: that the Christian life moves beyond believing in God to being in relationship to God." I am inviting everyone to have that relationship, not just Christians.
The other issue which occupied my thoughts is that I have as a result of my history been only minimally socialized, meaning I don’t do well in social situations and come across as rude or uncaring, at times. I am asking for help and guidance and doing my best.
The other issue which occupied my thoughts is that I have as a result of my history been only minimally socialized, meaning I don’t do well in social situations and come across as rude or uncaring, at times. I am asking for help and guidance and doing my best.
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
The topic for today’s recovery meeting was the importance of love and connection for healing, especially quitting illegal drugs or alcohol. Someone brought up that, for them, love had a sexual connotation. They were referring to what I call "country song love" which is not at all what I mean at all. I do mean truly wanting and being willing to support their emotional and spiritual development. Like I said yesterday, using the words of Williamson "Not a silly love. Not a childish love. But a powerful love, an awesome love so aligned with God that it will change all things." As I said in the meeting, the presence of that love promotes healing.
Tuesday, September 27, 2016
My response when I encounter someone doing self-centered, destructive and/or illegal behavior is to love them anyway, truly wanting and being willing to support their emotional and spiritual development. I love them even if what they are doing is hurting me, which is, to me, the nature of unconditional love. My response often includes seeing that they are stopped and in some cases fined, jailed or prosecuted. In the words of Williamson "Not a silly love. Not a childish love. But a powerful love, an awesome love so aligned with God that it will change all things." In general people do not hurt other people unless they have been hurt in the past so hurting them more is not likely to help. Hurting them more will not "increase the integrity of the universe".
Monday, September 26, 2016
This morning I received an e-mail from my credit card company detailing their concerns that someone was fraudulently using my card number, which they were, so I discontinued the card. This was just another example of someone acting in a very self-centered manner at the expense of someone else. In the general sense of self-centered behavior at someone else’s expense, this type of behavior happens frequently. The point I wish to make is that their action is the natural consequence of their emotional and spiritual development, combined with the cultural milieu they were raised in. They need to be stopped and in some cases fined, jailed or prosecuted but they were also just doing their best. Altering the cultural milieu would also be a good idea.
Sunday, September 25, 2016
I don’t normally watch the news on TV since I do not own one. I read the paper and listen to the radio just enough to have some idea of what is going on. In the place I am staying the news is frequently on the TV and the other news outlets are much more pronounced than I am used to. Consequently, I am much more aware of the chaos, anxiety and mindless violence in the world today. I feel a great peace inside, knowing that in an eternal sense everything is moving along just fine and that the chaos, anxiety and mindless violence are all transient, not meaningless but also not terribly important.
Saturday, September 24, 2016
This morning I attended a community acupuncture session and toward the end of the session a man who was in charge in some way gave a "speech" for several minutes. He talked primarily about the fact that we are spiritual beings having a physical experience and encouraging us to remember that fact and to act out of that higher energy state, never realizing that the very act of talking about it brought our energy down. He also promoted himself and the healing sessions he conducts. During his talk it was clear that he was quite proud of himself and the talk contained a lot of ego and spiritual materialism. I took away two important messages from the encounter. One lesson is that the world is full of that type and I just need to attend to my own affairs - that is none of my business unless asked. The other important message is that I have the same tendencies and to be careful!
Friday, September 23, 2016
This morning I sent out my first query letter as a major part of my effort to obtain a literary agent. This action was remarkable in that I do not do well with self-promotion, preferring instead to stay quietly in the background while letting my actions speak for themselves. A query letter is all about promotion, an attempt to convince a potential agent that my book is a good one, that I am highly qualified and uniquely suited to write my book, all true. Until writing my book (Three Simple Questions: Being in the World, But Not of It) my effort was to change the world - one person at a time. This book is an effort to go beyond that, reaching many people. A literary agent could help me do that.
Thursday, September 22, 2016
Yesterday’s blog is a good example that I need to keep in mind that I know my way, what works for me and I frequently express it as such. I actually spend a fair amount of time daily to keep abreast of what is right for me and my life path. I do not know what is right for anyone else so my letting them know that they are doing things wrong makes no sense. Additionally, if I attempt to alter or control someone else’s behavior, I am likely to waste my energy, hurting them in the process.
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Today, during my recovery meeting one of the other members interrupted the person speaking in order to stop him and tell him that he was not following the rules. He did do it politely and carefully, even apologizing after the meeting. I have often been in a position to do the same and, at least recently, have decided not to impose my rigidity and ideas on someone else, that it would not "increase the integrity of the universe". My view is that what they say could help themselves or someone else, so I leave it alone. I do sometimes talk to them after the meeting so as not to appear the authority during the meeting.
Tuesday, September 20, 2016
The main event of the day was that we went to White’s Ferry, toward the west end of the state. It was, indeed, beautiful and we sat at the landing for a while before a short walk and sit along the old C. & O. canal at the same location. We had a wonderful time connecting with the land and local spirits but they were not the events that caught my attention. Two things really got my attention. The first was the traffic and the number of people on the road, making driving stressful and tiring. The second was the quiet of White’s ferry versus the almost constant loud noise of the place we are staying. I much prefer the quiet, it is only then that I can truly connect.
It’s yesterday now since I couldn’t figure out what to write, but it was a quiet "beginning of fall" day. When doing my dawn ceremony the trees, shrubs and land felt like an ending or completion. The leaves have begun to fall and it has become cooler, it even smells different, less green and growing. I am in the process of beginning so the fall of the year is not what I am up to - but it does feel like I should slow down. The fall of the year feels quite a bit stronger here than it did in Flagstaff - the seasons are more pronounced.
Sunday, September 18, 2016
Yesterday I spoke of connecting with the people, land, plants and spirits in this area and how important that connection is to me. Those connections give my life depth and meaning. It’s similar to the connection I have with my wife, Maria, but all of the time, with everyone and everything. That connection requires focus and attention and can be disrupted by the distraction and noise of TV, i-phones or the internet. I like the quiet times, which certainly makes me a misfit here!
Saturday, September 17, 2016
A few days after arriving in MD from AZ I went to a recovery meeting and began connecting and making friends. In the two months since then I have gone to several meetings a week and begun several friendships. I have done similarly with Friend’s (Quaker) meetings, though only twice a week. The connections are vital to my approach to life. That is when I feel the power of love most clearly. I have also begun connecting with the land, plants and spirits in this area. I am still new to that type of connecting so it is a bit tentative, but it seems equally vital to me.
Friday, September 16, 2016
I read my journal and also recall that yesterday I felt inadequate and that I could not do the task at hand. Today I feel like "I got this". The difference is a couple of days of not doing anything challenging and a lot of self-care. Two points come to mind. The first is that feelings are not facts, they are temporary and they pass. The second lesson I need to be aware of is the importance of being gentle with myself. In this case I took it easy for a couple of days, even if that did not seem reasonable.
Thursday, September 15, 2016
Today I felt inadequate to the challenge at hand. I was also aware of being in the seeming (though not real!) chaos of a new environment. I commented to Maria that I just had to become "all I could be". Some of the words of Marianne Williamson, in The Gift Of Change: Spiritual Guidance for Living Your Best Life come to mind "It is time to die to who we used to be and to become instead who we are capable of being. That is the gift that awaits us now: the chance to become who we really are. And that is the miracle: the gift of change". Another of her comments ring true to me right now "If you can rise above the fear in your life and live the love within you, and if I can rise above my fear and live the love in me-----if that drama is reenacted enough times by enough of the world’s people-----then we will pierce the cosmic darkness and tip the world in the direction of light." Very simple - just not easy so I spent a good part of the day making spaghetti sauce and taking it easy.
Wednesday, September 14, 2016
I have a desire to reach out to the people I contact daily and offer them a more fulfilling life through spirituality and connection in general - or am I just being a bit arrogant. Other people being receptive to my message depends on them believing that something is missing from their lives - which many (perhaps most!) people do not believe. The difference between us is shown nicely by the driving attitudes I spoke of a few days ago. My tendency is to drive at a moderate speed, be present, be relaxed and connect. While their approach is to get where they are going, as quickly as possible. They see me as an impediment and in need of speeding up. My best approach is to respect where they are coming from, get out of the way as much as possible, and leave them alone as long as their life is working for them.
Tuesday, September 13, 2016
On our way traveling across the country we stopped for the night at a camping area in Oklahoma. As is my practice, I got up to pray, meditate and contemplate in the middle of the night and there in the glow of my headlamp, right in front of our tent an orb-web spider was making her web. She worked very hard, made a beautiful web and caught a few insects by morning. She did not become famous and the only people who knew of and appreciated her labors were my wife and myself. I was emotionally and spiritually impacted by the sight, taking it to be symbolic of the work I was about to begin in Maryland. Today I was reminded of this experience and my role here by a beautiful orb-web and spider in the backyard, glowing because of the sunlight(?) on it. The strange part was that it was not there when I tried to show it to Maria a few minutes later. Understanding is not required.
Monday, September 12, 2016
In my quest to be of service to the people in this area I am trying to understand them. Most of them, though certainly not all, are very immersed in worldly things, anxious and angry, more so in MD than they were in Flagstaff. This attitude is quite apparent when driving. I generally drive at two to three miles per hour above the speed limit. I usually gather a line of cars behind me that want to go faster and, given an opportunity, the drivers let me know of their displeasure and tell me I should speed up. When this happens I have a very strong urge to speed up and join them so I set my cruise control to my standard two to three miles per hour above the speed limit, relax and be present.
Sunday, September 11, 2016
I have been reading, studying and contemplating modern physics and considering how to reconcile it with the spiritual realities and ideas that I am familiar with. Sean Carroll points out that "In modern parlance, Laplace was pointing out that the universe is something like a computer. You enter an input (the state of the universe right now), it does its calculation (the laws of physics) and it gives you an output (the state of the universe one moment later)." Then on the other hand he comments that "There is much we don’t know about how the world works". It’s clear that the core theory of physics explains the vast majority of what happens in this world, but not everything, the force and power of love comes to mind, along with various phenomena.
Saturday, September 10, 2016
I must have really listened to the words I wrote for the last few days because I feel a great deal better, though nothing has changed, it is still too hot, too humid and I still have mouth pain. Journaling certainly helps pull the truth out and clarify issues. During my writing or working with others I frequently say or write things I need to pay attention to. I also stay open to the comments of others. It often helps to quiet the ego in the process.
Friday, September 9, 2016
After a period of some self-centered stewing about the negative aspects (too hot, too humid, mouth pain) of my current situation, I realized that I needed to pay attention to the words I said yesterday. Additionally, I needed to acknowledge my own difficulties while focusing on the needs of others. It also helps to be grateful for my gifts. That all sounds easy but I don’t find it so.
Thursday, September 8, 2016
My comments of two days ago about embracing my "defects" or the undesirable aspects of self came up again several times today. The source of that comment is that if I accept those parts of myself, admit them openly and apply a little gentle loving laughter when I spot them, they lose their power over me and can drift away like clouds in the sky. On the other hand if I fight them they are likely to get stronger and, at the very least, have power over me as I oppose them. Once I accept them, they become shadows of their former selves, or go away.
Tuesday, September 6, 2016
Today I was very aware that I am not the person I would like to be. I am the inspiration and model for a goodly number of people and that is quite genuine. I freely and openly admit to my many less than loving thoughts and attraction to distractions of all sorts. I also get embroiled in day to day activities, thinking them to have some importance. These are all wonderful parts of being human - including the inspiration part. This is all part of being "Charlie" and a good part of why I write this blog rather than sequestering myself from life’s process. I embrace all I just spoke of.
Monday, September 5, 2016
Today was a "taking care of business" kind of day and, as often happens during this sort of day, I note how easy it is to be pulled off of the spiritual, love-based path. I paid bills, took the car in to get it worked on and answered correspondence. I had to keep reminding myself and bringing myself back to feelings of love, peace, well-being and compassion, feelings I identify with God. A comment by Saint Faustina helped me a lot; "When a soul has come out of these tribulations, it is deeply humble. Its purity of soul is great. It knows better without need of reflecting, as it were, what it ought too do at a given moment and what to forbear. It feels the lightest touch of grace and is very faithful to God. It recognizes God from afar and continuously rejoices in Him. It discovers God very quickly in other souls and in its environment in general." It’s good to cherish the gift of life.
Sunday, September 4, 2016
I have been feeling grateful for the several people I have connected with during the last few days. Yesterday I went to a new (good meeting - but way to big!) recovery meeting with one of the people I am getting to know. We also talked for a while. She is helping me fit in to the recovery community here. Today I spent some time with the Friends, talking and connecting. It’s really nice to have these groups and be open to their welcoming assistance. Not surprisingly, they are wanting to talk about life’s struggles since they sense me as a safe person who knows about struggling.
Friday, September 2, 2016
I have been working on my next book today, a book based on the empty-fullness of life on this planet. The book will be based on the observation that as Beattie put it "life isn't just mysterious and unpredictable, it can be unbearably cruel and breathtakingly wondrous, sometimes at the same time." The book will be based on the paradox of life on this planet. A paradox that the pain and discomfort in my own life has driven me to become familiar with. I now see life as a beautiful process of growth in love, a profound shift in thinking, but then years ago I did ask to see things the way God does.
Thursday, September 1, 2016
I continue to push forward as far as writing a query letter and getting a literary agent. Doing so still sounds and feels right amid the chaos of setting up my new life in Maryland. It’s engrossing to observe myself go from grandiose, overly confident thoughts to feeling worthless within a matter of a few minutes. The transition is not quite fun - but certainly entertaining. I realize that I am between the two extremes.
Wednesday, August 31, 2016
Today, in addition to minor activities like ordering checks and paying bills, I closed on a house in Columbia MD. The actual closing was logistically simple and only took a few minutes. My tendency is to consider the process as being emotionally "not a big deal". However the tension in my neck and not sleeping well lead me to the realization that it was a big deal. I need to allow any emotions to come up, limit my other activities and get more rest. Basic self-care.
Tuesday, August 30, 2016
I have now written the central core of my query to literary agents and selected three agencies to target. The whole process is a blend of reading, listening to human advice and asking for spiritual guidance, all the time reflecting on the three questions that are the central focus of my book (would I do this in front of God, is it really my responsibility, will this increase the integrity of the universe). I don’t take any action until it feels right.
Monday, August 29, 2016
Earlier today, on our way to getting more keys for our newish truck, I commented to Maria that I "just felt good", meaning enjoying harmony and being in the flow of life. I am reminded of the comment by Green S.J., that "if we persevere despite our disorientation, we begin to realize that it is only being lost, in losing ourselves, that we are found." This move has been difficult, no question. I am beginning to see an opening and feel some clarity - in the fog. For today I will take that and enjoy it.
Sunday, August 28, 2016
This was another day when I felt harmonious and on track. It is a good idea for me to stay active and focus on things like gratitude and love. Alternatively I can focus on pain, limited physical capability and the physical discomfort of heat and humidity. Neither choice impacts on or changes reality. However the former feels a great deal better.
Saturday, August 27, 2016
Today felt harmonious, like everything was in order, from blessing the land and trees this morning to wiring the money for our new house to making deviled eggs (yum!) this afternoon. As I have mentioned in the past, I have been feeling lost, frustrated and in the midst of change. Today I was alright with the changing nature of everything. I have been reflecting on the comment by Walsch that "There is nothing scary about life, if you are not attached to the results". Very true. I have and continue to be attached to the way things were. It’s time to just enjoy the feeling of harmony.
Friday, August 26, 2016
I have been crafting a query letter to be sent out to potential literary agents in the hope of attracting one to represent and promote me and my writing. My letter is an attempt to convince them to take a chance on me, basically a one page letter promoting me and my writing. I do not do well with self-promotion. I have great difficulty in seeing my own gifts and unique abilities clearly. I also tend to get down on myself about my feelings of anger, frustration and impatience about my physical condition. I want to be better than I am and do not fully recognize how good that is! Being all too human comes to mind.
Thursday, August 25, 2016
This evening Maria and I attended a weekday meeting at the Sandy Springs Friend’s church and before the service we walked around the attached cemetery. While walking around the cemetery I felt drawn to a huge, very old, beautiful tulip poplar near the center. I felt the tree call to me, inviting me to be with it and, at the same time, Maria suggested I do the same. I went over and connected with the massive presence of the tree. My impression was that it had been watching over the cemetery, a sacred place, for a long time. The spot had been made sacred by the people and spirits who treated it as such, a valuable lesson for me.
Wednesday, August 24, 2016
The most important activity today was to re-organize my computer files and get rid of most of the files I used for my previous career, very cathartic and meaningful. I do have to keep my client files for six years, but that is a separate issue. It felt important for me to do this in recognition of the change and I feel very good about it, sort of a symbolic rite of passage. I have also begun a query letter in my efforts to find a literary agent. I keep thinking of the comment by John C. Sawhill, that "To attain excellence, you must care more than others think wise, risk more than others think safe and dream more than others think practical".
Tuesday, August 23, 2016
Given the love for all that I spoke of yesterday, I also trust people completely - to be themselves. Thinking of the story of the man who rescues a snake only to have the snake bite him when it became healthy, I love the snake and assume it will bite me if it has the opportunity. Similarly, I feel a great love for my fellow humans but know we will do silly, shortsighted, destructive things out of a confused self-interest. I have certainly done that in my past. The love I now feel is unconditional. However, I also strive to not let it color my perceptions, rather to clarify them.
Monday, August 22, 2016
Many years ago I asked, in a sweat lodge, to see things the way God does. Then again several years ago I returned from my meditation and found that I retained the loving attitude I found there. Seeing and connecting with everything and every body in a loving way is a major part of what I asked in that lodge years ago. "We read the papers. We grieve the suffering. But many of us think, God has a plan, and we believe----still----that its name is love. Not a silly love. Not a childish love. But a powerful love, an awesome love so aligned with God that it will change all things" (Marianne Williamson). Given that, I see reality and people for what they are and love them in the process. I love the trees for being trees, ants and cockroaches for being themselves and all individuals for being themselves. With some individuals that means that I don’t want to be around them and, sometimes, that they should be behind bars.
Sunday, August 21, 2016
It is Sunday evening and I have been spending most of my time these last couple of days performing mindless tasks like shredding or just sitting, staring and contemplating my situation. These days have been sorting time, resting time. As I rest I can feel myself getting emotionally and spiritually stronger, feeling gratitude and love for all things. We have also been looking into some of the available trucks and will, hopefully, buy one tomorrow. Life goes on - just slowly and carefully.
Saturday, August 20, 2016
I seek to reduce my emotional attachment to any material object, idea or attitude. When I say attachment I mean a desire or belief that it is important that something should remain or become a certain way. For example, the desire that a certain team should win a sporting event or a desire to have people think me intelligent. Attachments tend to cause fear of change and reduce my openness and appreciation for the present. This has been on my mind lately since I am temporarily staying in a home where they have a TV and it is quite clear that the TV promotes attachment as a potential source of enjoyment. I find just the opposite, as have many spiritual leaders before me.
Friday, August 19, 2016
Yesterday we went to check out our new home in Columbia Maryland. We actually met a professional home inspector there and I wanted him to do his job, but I was more interested in spiritually connecting with the trees, other plants and, it turned out, dogs in the neighborhood. All of my connections felt very positive. There are several, large oak and maple trees on the property and several smaller plants as well as an adjoining "wild" area. All the plants felt happy, solid and welcoming, a good "retreat" area for me. I also encountered several dogs of various sizes, some quite large, strong and young. They were also quite welcoming.
Thursday, August 18, 2016
The "I am" or God part of myself is very powerful, other directed, focused on gratitude and aware of my connection to everything and everyone. It feels great to be in that space. However, I have difficulty maintaining it when I am physically run down, in physical pain and/or in physical discomfort. The physical pain and discomfort both seem fairly constant and part of my reality right now, things I cannot change, but being run down is something I can guard against. It is curious to watch my thoughts slip momentarily into that negative space, just long enough for me to realize that I would rather not be there.
Wednesday, August 17, 2016
Today, I did pretty well at staying in that transcendent place - at least until the evening when I slipped back into the negative part of self, but even then I kept it to myself. During most of the day I kept reminding myself of the things I was grateful for and also kept reminding myself of the loving, eternal, God part. I kept reflecting on the words of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj when he commented "Get to know that ‘I am’ without words which arises in the morning. Knowing the Self, abiding in the Self-knowledge, is not a mere intellectual knowing. You must be that, and you should not move away from it. Remain firm." I much prefer that part. In the evening I allowed myself to get run-down and negative.
Tuesday, August 16, 2016
Recently I have taken an excursion into a very human, hurt and somewhat angry part of myself rather than living out of the loving, grateful, peaceful, transcendent part. I have, understandably, focused on physical discomfort, pain, difficulties and feeling totally lost. I say "understandably" because those factors are totally real and part of my world right now. I am disabled, have pain much of the time, am in a totally new environment, have just given up my recent career and it is very hot and humid. The excursion has been useful in showing me the way some people live and the attitude I could have. However, it is time for me to live out of the transcendent God part of myself, the place I go to each morning in prayer and meditation. In that place my pain, disability and difficulties are mere shadows or do not exist at all. There is only love, gratitude and peace.
Monday, August 15, 2016
Today I blew up at someone from the Chase bank back in AZ and, given the chance, I will make amends and, at the very least, do things differently. Right now I am attempting to look at the situation honestly and without simply justifying my behavior, which would not be helpful and would definitely not "increase the integrity of the universe". I am reminded of a comment by St. Teresa of Avila that "I never seem unable to find a reason for thinking I am being virtuous when I make excuses for myself. It is better, then, usually to abstain from self-justification under accusation except when failing to explain will cause either offense or scandal." In this situation it is easy for me to self-justify, which helps no-one and pulls me away from a loving response. It is better just to admit that my behavior was not helpful or appropriate and seek to do things differently. I need to meditate on that.
Sunday, August 14, 2016
Today was a very busy day. The day began with doing a dawn ceremony, doing some exercise and then going to a Friend’s meeting, an important beginning to prepare myself for the rest of the day. The most time consuming part of the day was a visit and meal with seven of my in-laws. During the visit the talk was almost entirely about trivial topics, which is difficult for me and I don’t do well with large groups. I kept asking for guidance, beginning with the dawn ceremony. The dawn ceremony consisted of me blessing the plants and environment by feeling grateful, loving, smelling the morning smells, listening to the morning sounds and telling the plants they are beautiful. I felt totally connected.
Saturday, August 13, 2016
I have been reading The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself, by physicist Sean Carroll. He and some other physicists seem to have the point of view "that the universe is something like a computer. You enter an input (the state of the universe right now), it does its calculation (the laws of physics) and it gives you an output (the state of the universe one moment later)." Personally, I have tried this point of view and found it inadequate to explain the unusual metaphysical phenomena such as those I mention particularly in the second chapter of my book (Understanding is not Required). On the other hand the force and power of love fits nicely into the field theory of quantum mechanics.
Friday, August 12, 2016
The activities of today remind me of comments like "split wood and carry water" or "first the ecstacy then the dishes". The fact is that the intensity yesterday’s experience of communicating with the spirit of Peter was all I could take for a while, so today was a grounding day. I spent most of the day exercising and cleaning toilets, very down to earth and humbling. I also had periods of prayer and meditation, contemplation and planning for parts of my next book.
Thursday, August 11, 2016
Maria and I attended a Friend’s worship session tonight which also turned out to be a memorial service. I ended up communicating with the spirit of the dead person during the proceedings, a very moving experience. During his life on this planet the deceased, Peter, had numerous challenges and a very difficult time. He was now within the love, connection and eternity of the Absolute, doing very well and his troubles were over. Several people spoke of their experiences with Peter, with his brother and a long-time friend really standing out to me. The friend described a time when Peter came to his rescue during a painful social event and how grateful he was. Peter wanted me to convey to the friend that the instance and love of his friend was also a gift to Peter. In my typical manner, I spent quite a while explaining to Peter’s spirit that I could not do that since I did not know either of them and it would be weird. After considerable urging, I finally talked to the friend who was very grateful and did not question or doubt me at all.
Wednesday, August 10, 2016
I watch people dealing with their fear and insecurities in a variety of non-functional ways, usually while also not admitting the driving force. For example they can appear very erudite, using big words, work all the time, have a lot of money, always be active or talk loudly and a lot, all in an attempt to feel happy and cover up the fear and insecurity they feel. I refer to these responses as non-functional because they work minimally, for a short time or not at all. I recognize the pattern, in part, because I used to do the same. I was and they are simply doing the best they can and doing what the culture tells them what will make them feel better. At this point I readily admit my fears and insecurities. I also embrace and love them as a charming and sometimes silly part of my humanity. I then attempt to focus on love, peace, connection and eternity. My approach feels very real, present and fulfilling.
Tuesday, August 9, 2016
It’s very easy for me to get "off the beam" spiritually, to start believing in the chaos, disorder, pain and fear of this world rather than the peace, love and connectedness of my God nature. Listening to the news, paying attention to Facebook or even attending to the chatter of the announcers during a ball game all tend to pull me toward trivial worldly concerns. Their "call" is loud, I don’t even have to believe in them. On the other hand sitting and quietly meditating or walking around this property blessing the plants as I go brings me back to the "I am" I wish to be. I would rather base my life on love and peace rather than fear and pain.
Monday, August 8, 2016
My wife and I are staying with her mother in her home in MD while we look for a home of our own. The property is not densely wooded but has a number of large trees and several bushes, of a variety of species. Tonight, at my wife’s urging, I went out to bless the trees and bushes. Much to my surprise, I automatically went into a very powerful, connected and loving consciousness with the plants. I became the same person I become when doing a healing or during an intense therapeutic session, the person I think of as the "I am" part, the God part. I recall the comment by Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj; "Get to know that "I am" without words which arises in the morning. Knowing the Self, abiding in the Self-knowledge, is not a mere intellectual knowing. You must be that, and you should not move away from it. Remain firm." Staying in that place and being that person is a challenge for me.
Sunday, August 7, 2016
Today I found myself getting angry at silly little things like the post office not forwarding our mail "correctly" or the computer not behaving the way I wanted, a clear sign that I was overly tired and needed more relaxing and sorting time. I need to realize that recent life events like this move or yesterday’s deciding on a house to buy, are big deals emotionally. I need to do things like going to recovery meetings and relaxing.
Saturday, August 6, 2016
We made our initial offer on a house today and were assured by our realtor that it was a solid offer that the sellers will take seriously & then counter. In the end we had a choice between two very similar houses. One house was actually a bit larger, with a smaller lot and was recently fixed up to sell. The house was several thousands cheaper and the smaller lot size meant lower annual taxes. That house was also more stark and less soft and welcoming in ambience. The second house, and the one we chose, had more of a relaxing, welcoming, retreat atmosphere primarily because of its lot, trees and deck. The second house was more expensive but less fixed up and it was clear during last night’s meditation that it was worth the extra expense. We chose the less practical and more expensive option since it felt right to do so.
Friday, August 5, 2016
Things seem to be coming together here, a good feeling. We now have two houses that we can afford and look like good choices. We have also found some stores with decent prices and the, mostly organic, food we like. Most important of all I am gaining some clarity about the need here for my message of spirituality, healing, love and connection. I have begun connecting with the people at a place in Columbia where I suspect that I will be able to present workshops in spiritual connection, a place where I can volunteer and be of service.
Thursday, August 4, 2016
This was a day very similar to yesterday in terms of prayer and meditation, exercise, simply doing the next right thing and exploring a potential new house. I did not make it to a recovery meeting but instead went to the silent meditation of a Friend’s meeting. The main difference is that I was very aware of my intimate and firm connection to everything and everybody. That sense of connection gives my life a joyful depth and is part of the loving presence I call God. That sense was strongest with the plants and trees at that potential new house and then with the spirits and people at the Friend’s meeting. I am aware that joyful depth is missing from the lives of many people.
Wednesday, August 3, 2016
It felt like a good day, a day of doing the next right thing and moving forward a bit. I did my prayer and meditation, exercised, did some driving on new roads, went to a recovery meeting and began exploring a potential new house. I am still impatient but also actively doing the next right thing. I was reminded to enjoy the process I am in right now, an important thing to remember. Being "lost in a trackless desert" is perfect for right now and there is a sense of peace in that.
Tuesday, August 2, 2016
I spent most of the last two days feeling anxious, hopeless and restless, feeling "lost in a trackless desert" and doing a lot of prayer, meditation and quiet contemplation. I would like the process of transition that I am in the midst of to be easy - it is not. It’s time to take action in becoming and establishing "Charlie" in MD. In the process of doing that I need to continue being surrendered and being of service. The process is summarized nicely by Thomas H. Green, S.J.; "The life of prayer is perhaps the most mysterious dimension of all human experience. We come to be at home with a God we cannot see. We discover that it is only by giving ourselves away totally that we truly come to possess ourselves, that we are most free when most surrendered. We begin to realize that light is darkness and darkness light. We become lost in a trackless desert — and then, if we persevere despite our disorientation, we begin to realize that it is only being lost, in losing ourselves, that we are found. The whole of our life and not just our prayer life, becomes a paradox, an apparent contradiction concealing and revealing a deeper truth, because we begin to realize that we must live as we pray." Simple, but not easy and, as I said a few days ago, I will persevere.
Sunday, July 31, 2016
This morning at the Friend’s meeting several people brought up families or individuals who were very angry, addicted to crystal meth, alcoholic or just had a very dysfunctional approach to life. At that time, I mentioned that I was a mental health therapists who worked with young, recovering addicts and that I had been successful in connecting with them through their God or love seed. I have also worked with very angry, dysfunctional people, many of whom were in jails. I have always been able to find and connect with their love or God seed, their good part. That part is always there. I can find that part if I approach them with love, understanding and compassion rather than judgment, criticism or condescension. Having connected with that part, it is then possible for them to look at alternative behaviors.
Saturday, July 30, 2016
Maria and I came to MD from AZ, began staying, temporarily, in Maria’s mother’s house and looking at house of our own. There have been many minor realizations along the way, such as gratitude and anger at the movers or that in many ways we do not fit with today’s culture. We have also been looking for a "sign" about where to live. The fact is that we have been presented with a very good realtor who has shown us many affordable housing opportunities. We have been shown houses in many neighborhood and some very rural all in various states of repair. I take that to mean that, to some extent, it does not matter where we settle. Each area will present its own gifts and challenges, different but all possible.
Friday, July 29, 2016
The topic for the recovery meeting today was "prayer and meditation", a topic and practice I feel passionate about, and depend on. The importance of prayer and meditation also keeps coming up in my life. Practicing prayer and meditation daily has changed my life, particularly during times of turmoil and stress like right now. I have found true the comment by Dubay that "When one is anchored deeply in the divine solution to all problems, outer turmoil cannot disturb the inner tranquility. It is a peace that surpasses all understanding." During the day and in other recent conversations it is apparent that most people find similar benefits from prayer and meditation. It is also apparent that they consider the practice to be an optional part of the day. I do not consider it optional.
Thursday, July 28, 2016
I recently read an article comparing life to a series of trapeze swings. The article suggested that we go through periods of relative comfort during which we have become familiar with the predictability of a given life situation, or trapeze bar. We then go through periods of change during which it seems that we are "hurtling through space" on our way to another trapeze bar. The author suggests that the period of transition between trapeze bars, like I am going through now, is extremely important, which I have found to be true. The author summarizes his point nicely; "And so transformation of fear may have nothing to do with making fear go away, but rather with giving ourselves permission to hang out in the transition between trapeze bars. Transforming our need to grab that new bar, any bar, is allowing ourselves to dwell in the only place where change really happens. It can be terrifying. It can also be enlightening, in the true sense of the word. Hurtling through the void, we just may learn how to fly."
Wednesday, July 27, 2016
I am in the process of forming a physical, emotional and spiritual foundation for the life adventure I have begun and, as with the beginning of other adventures, this is not easy. I have to continually ask for guidance and support and, as has been written by Thomas H. Green, S.J., "The life of prayer is perhaps the most mysterious dimension of all human experience. We come to be at home with a God we cannot see. We discover that it is only by giving ourselves away totally that we truly come to possess ourselves, that we are most free when most surrendered. We begin to realize that light is darkness and darkness light. We become lost in a trackless desert — and then, if we persevere despite our disorientation, we begin to realize that it is only being lost, in losing ourselves, that we are found. The whole of our life and not just our prayer life, becomes a paradox, an apparent contradiction concealing and revealing a deeper truth, because we begin to realize that we must live as we pray." I will persevere.
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
Today I saw a video of a small bird landing on his podium while Bernie Sanders spoke and then a second video of a bald eagle being agitated by and then attacking Donald Trump. The differing responses of the birds to these two men reminded me of the fact that before recovery and shifting to a loving attitude, bees of all kinds used to leave their nests, seek me out and sting me, sometimes up to thirty times. At that time I was angry, judgmental and confused. I have not been stung once since entering recovery and shifting my attitude. In fact, twice now, I have walked into nests of hornets and wasps only to have them leave their nests and warn me by head-butting my glasses. They did not perceive me as a threat and chose not to sting me. In each case I was startled and simply backed off, quickly! To me these examples demonstrate that we are all connected, energetically, and that we can be sensitive to the intentions of others.
Monday, July 25, 2016
Today I was very much aware of being a source of love and peace in the midst of the fear, negativity and chaos of day-to-day life. Nothing particularly remarkable happened, I just encountered various circumstances and people who were a bit negative and fearful in their approach, in an attempt at avoiding potentially negative outcomes. My approach does not change the outcomes at all - life just happens. I just approach life with a more loving attitude described well by Walsch when he wrote "Embrace every circumstance, own every fault, share every joy, contemplate every mystery, walk in every man’s shoes, forgive every offense (including your own), heal every heart, honor every person’s truth, adore every person’s God, protect every person’s rights, preserve every person’s dignity, promote every person’s interests, provide every person’s needs, presume every person’s holiness, present every person’s greatest gifts, produce every person’s blessing, and pronounce every person’s future secure in the assured love of God."