New Thought

Want Spiritual Experiences? Do This!

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If you’ve ever spent any amount of time in a stream of seemingly bad luck, you know how hard it is to stay positive.

If you’re there right now, I feel your pain.  I’ve written about losing my job six weeks ago and a bit about the accompanying crappy details like being denied unemployment, scheduling and preparing for an appeal hearing, finding out my insurance has lapsed in spite of COBRA and the grueling process of debt consolidation.

The icing on the cake was last week’s unexpected but typical family drama.  The proverbial straw . . .

I know, poor, poor, pitiful me.

It’s tough being spiritual, isn’t it, when you’re clinging to a log in the middle of that rough-water stream?

Tough, but not impossible.

You and I know that the logs we metaphorically hang on to–the ones with the claw marks–represent the stuff that’s hurting us, the circumstances or people we must let go.

But before you can let go, there is something that needs to happen.

You need to become willing.

Huh?

That’s right.  Everything you experience in life is about the decisions you make.  You either made a decision already or you need to make a decision and think you can’t.

Do you know why you can’t?  You haven’t become willing.

I’ve spent the better part of the last six weeks terrified that the money will run out, we’ll become homeless and begging with Jazzy on a street corner.

Well, maybe I’m not quite that fearful.  But I have been clinging to a big ‘ole log of fear even as I’ve known that I need to let it go.

But there was a piece missing.  The piece was willingness.

Willingness precedes every growth step.

I was having a conversation over the weekend with friends about spiritual experiences and how to know if we’d had one.  Several people said they only learn to appreciate an event as a spiritual experience after they became willing to open themselves to having them.

Do you agree?

Reading in the text of A Course in Miracles confirmed the piece about decisions.  “If you cannot hear the Voice for God, it is because you do not choose to listen.  That you do listen to the voice of your ego is demonstrated by your attitudes, your feelings and your behavior,” reads ACIM.

Choosing to listen to the voice on your spiritual path or to your ego is your decision, of course.  That’s why we have free will.

And free will decisions are always about either fear or love.  Will you continue to clutch the log in fear or are you willing to let go and open yourself to your cinema of spiritual experiences?

Give it some thought, and if you’re willing, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

B Well & Willing!

Photo courtesy of renowiggum

 

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Are You Priority One?

Today,IMG 0531 224x300 Are You Priority One? the day that begins the second week of 2012 finds me in a totally differet place than on the first day of last week.

Today I choose to be easy with myself and with each person and situation I encounter.

Today, I release, I let go, I let Spirit run my life (to quote one of my favorite Unity songs). I am now free to hop and skip and have fun with my day.

My early morning dreams started the ball rolling. I was with Oprah at a huge party/event she hosted to help women learn to nurture and honor themselves. Not a big stretch, right? Here’s the cool part–Oprah had a zillion people pulling her in several directions but before she did any of those things, she grabbed a nice paper shopping bag and excused herself. She was gone for several moments and when she returned, she handed the bag to me and said, “Please enjoy and please take good care of yourself. You are the most important person in your life.”  Inside the bag were beautifully wrapped pampering goodies.

Do you think there are messages in dreams? I do! My Oprah dream tells me that taking care of myself is Priority One.

Are you your Priority One today?

As we begin this second work week of 2012, please savor these five quotes about self-care. Yes, we all have our goals and ambitions for the year, but let’s remember to balance the outer with the inner.

B Well & Present,

Beth

The name of the game is taking care of yourself, because you’re going to live long enough to wish you had.
–Grace Mirabella

People often say that this or that person has not yet found himself. But the self is not something one finds, it is something one creates.
–Thomas S. Szasz

We need to find the courage to say ‘NO’ to the things and people that are not serving us if we want to
rediscover ourselves and live our lives with authenticity.
–Barbara De Angelis

Ninety per cent of the world’s woe comes from people not knowing themselves, their abilities, their frailties, and even their real virtues. Most of us go almost all the way through life as complete strangers to ourselves — so how can we know anyone else?
–Sidney J. Harris

I was always looking outside myself for strength and confidence, but it comes from within. It is there all the time.
–Anna Freud

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Happy Is . . . What Exactly?

guard dog 300x225 Happy Is . . . What Exactly?Rawhide treats make our 10-year-old Greyhound, Baylor, really happy.

He made that point with gusto following a recent early morning walk. As I watched him devour the Christmas-decorated bone, I pondered the state of happy and what it means.

Pretty broad–and deep–subject for 7 a.m., wouldn’t you say?

Happy is a slippery word, I think, and is hard to define yet most of us are quick to respond to the question, Are you happy?

For me, at least at first blush, the word happy seems superficial. Who says, No, I’m not happy when asked?

Personally, I would rather someone ask me if I’m at peace, than whether I’m happy. The peace question seems a little easier to answer.

Maybe I’m just uncomfortable with the word Happy. I mean, think about how easily it gets tossed around. People are always throwing out Happy Birthday or Happy Anniversary or Happy New Year.

Have a Happy Day, a Happy Life.

But what does that mean?

Maybe we need to think about what causes happiness. Is it the source of satisfaction? Comfort? The ease with which we move through our days?

Maybe happy is a summation of being kind and gentle, thoughtful and charitable.

Perhaps the state of happiness is the absence of tension and envy. Sometimes I realize I’m empty of certain emotions, so is it at that point that other emotions–like Happy–can enter my consciousness?

Maybe I need to drain first, fill second.

All this really makes no sense, and truthfully, I’m started to remind myself of the late Andy Rooney delivering his closing comments on 60 Minutes.

Except . . .

Maybe the purpose of contemplating the meaning of Happy is merely to point out my incessant need to define my feelings.

There it is. The crux of discomfort. That old ugly urge to harness my state of mind.

Well, I say phooey to that today. I have only one need that can make me happy.

I just need to be; be in this moment because in this minute space of time, I am everything and anything and fine.

I may even go so far as to say I’m happy. Happy as a dog with a rawhide bone.

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Take a Flying Leap (of Faith)

 Take a Flying Leap (of Faith)Happy 2012!

Most of us, thankfully, have a good number of changing-of-the-annual-calendar events under our belts. For me, most years can be categorized in one of two ways: those I remember (post drinking) and those I don’t (obviously not post drinking).

The majority were pretty unremarkable: party in some fashion, watch Dick Clark’s Rockin’ Eve ball drop (or go to bed), then do the New Year’s Day thing with parades and football and blacked-eyed peas.

There are remarkable standouts–the bicentennial (that would be 1976 for you youngsters), my first sober New Year’s celebration at the end of 1991, a special ceremony in Colorado as the clock turned to 1996, the change of centuries, and my first Texas New Year (sick but still walking the beach in Galveston at midnight).

Some new years have been approached with eager anticipation, some with regret, some with dread, and some with all-in, full-on flying leaps of faith.

2012 is a Flying Leap of Faith year for me. I am butterflies-in-the-stomach excited because of the possibilities this year holds. All kinds of good stuff lie in wait for moi to uncover.

I love the number 12 (12 Disciples, 12 Steps, 12 Powers) and I figure with the number 2 in front of them, it’s going to be a double-time good year.

In honor of Flying Leaps of Faith, I offer these five quotes for the first Mindful Monday of 2012. Regular readers know that I encourage you to use them as you like, whether it’s one a day for each workday of the week or all five each day. It’s a personal kind of thing.

Read, savor, enjoy! Cheers to Flying Leaps!

We must walk consciously only part way toward our goal, and then leap in the dark to our success. — Henry David Thoreau

Leap, and the net will appear. — Julia Cameron

Sometimes your only available transportation is a leap of faith. — Margaret Shepard

Faith is walking face first and full speed into the dark. If we truly knew all the answers in advance as to the meaning of life and the nature of God and the destiny of our souls, our belief would not be a leap of faith and it would not be a courageous act of humanity; it would just be . . a prudent insurance policy. — Elizabeth Gilbert

When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth. So what the hell, leap!  — Cynthia Heimel

(And an extra as my New Year’s gift to you):

First you jump off the cliff and you build your wings on the way down. — Ray Bradbury.

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Love is All That is Within Me

IMG 0613 224x300 Love is All That is Within MeMy sweetie and I are just back from our fun-in-the-sun Christmas beach vacation.

Our five days of toes dipped in sand, fresh seafood and Atlantic sunrises filled us to overflow with gratitude and delight.  We arrived home last night wrapped in bubbles of peace.

Have you ever experienced that super-cool feeling of complete inside-out peace?  I’m pretty excited that on this 29th day of December, my personal 2011 is easing–not hurtling–toward completion.  For me, the year is not expiring in a big blob of trauma drama, as it has in the past.  Instead, I’m blessed that these remaining days are alive with love.

Love is All That is Within Me.

My prayerful wish for you is the same.

I know that we each have the ability to let go of anything that doesn’t serve our highest good.  A wise man on the beach taught me a simple surrender process (more to come on both the man and the process) that allows me to control not only how I choose to feel but also how I share those feelings.

We each have the ability to choose love in any circumstance.

You too can say,  Love is All That is Within Me.

Choosing love takes preparation.  I began to prepare on Christmas Eve by focusing on a simultaneous new birth within me as a part of the Christmas story.

I prayed this simple prayer, “Dear God, may Christmas Day be the first of all days that I live with conscious poise.  May I focus on honoring God-thoughts and forgive myself those thoughts that are less than honorable.  May my growth be deliberate and authentic and focused on love.  Thank you, God.  Amen.”

When I woke on Christmas morning, in my bed perfectly positioned to view the colorful palette of a breathtaking sunrise, I knew I was different.  I felt a sense of mindful connection and today, four days later, I remain plugged in to love and peace.

The probability is high that God and I can take this sense of mindful ease into the first hours, and perhaps days, of 2012.

With All That is Within Me, I make that my intention.

There will be no resolutions and no goal-setting for 2012.  Instead, I resolve to be as fully present to each day as I can knowing that how I approach my day is a conscious decision.

If you’ve chosen that Love is All That is Within You, I’d love to hear about your preparation process and about your intentional resolve.  Please leave a comment here.

In this, my last B Here Today post of 2011, I leave you with a gift and a promise:

My gift to you is a new and improved B Here Today, a 2.0 version, if you will.  The re-tooling is underway and will unveil in mid to late January.

My promise is to lovingly devote more peace, passion and presence to you in the new year.  I read recently that discipline + passion = magic.  2012 will be our year to make magic happen together.  

Until then, my mindful friends, B WELL and B LOVE.

BIG Holiday Hugs!

 

 

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