The Empty Threats of Fear
A recent experience taught me how quickly I can fall into the deceiving grips of fear and how important it is for me to practise awareness. For several weeks, my left leg has been swollen from the knee to the ankle. I convinced myself that it was a muscle spasm or cramp that wouldn’t let go, and I kept thinking that I would be able to work it out… or it would just disappear because I wanted it to be gone. It certainly didn’t seem like something I should see a doctor about, or so I thought.
New Year’s Resolutions with a Twist
I would like to propose a new kind of resolution as we begin the new year — resolutions that have none of the guilt that most of our pledges arise from after the weeks of excess during the holiday season. We feel guilty about all the rich food that we have eaten, our lack of exercise and physical activity, all the liquid Christmas cheer that we have imbibed, and all the money that we have spent. Our guilt inspires impassioned vows to exercise regularly, to eat a healthy diet, to detox our bodies, to live within a budget, to pay off our credit cards… to make any number of surface changes that we hope will make us feel better about ourselves.
We Can Choose to Feel Lonely, But We Are Never Alone
Perhaps you think I am playing with words or trying to be clever. I can assure you that I am not. I know what it is to feel lonely. I know how easy it is to believe that I am alone and that no one cares — that it is just me against the world. I know how quickly I can allow myself to have a full-out pity party of one. All this can happen in the blink of an eye when I buy into the story that my ego wants me to believe — that I am separate from everyone else and that I am on my own in this world.
Do I Choose Engagement or Observation?
I always thought that I wanted to engage fully in life and to experience each moment to the fullest. I always believed that it was better to be fully engaged in every experience that life brought me than to be an observer of life. I thought engagement equaled active living and observation equaled passive living, and in my mind, active living was the only choice. I find myself questioning what I always thought and believed.
We Are Anything But Small
We strive so hard to be worthy and to “make it” in this world. We expend huge amounts of effort to attain levels of achievement or positions that our egos tell us are markers of success. Many of us even overextend ourselves financially to buy what we can’t afford in order to project images of success. We push ourselves to do more and acquire more so that we can be more. The question is why? Why do we work so hard to meet these arbitrary standards of worth and success? Why do we fall prey to extrinsic measurements of our worth? The answer is a simple one — we have forgotten who we really are.
Learning to Be
I want to celebrate an important milestone on my inner journey with you. I am opening into just being, and it feels wonderful! I have always allowed myself to be ruled by a steady stream of “shoulds” and “have tos” in my mind, and at long last, I am able to release and allow myself to just be. I sensed that I needed to do this as summer holidays beckoned and colleagues talked about their summer plans. Whenever I was asked about my plans, my answer was always the same, “I want time to just be.” I hadn’t given my response a lot of thought; it just rose from within me. As it was expressed, I knew it was what I needed to do. And that is exactly what the first two weeks of my summer break have been all about. Extended periods of time along our walking paths every day have provided me […]
Honour Your True Self
When you get an opportunity to have time to yourself, do you struggle with a seemingly endless list of things you think you should be doing? What is there about caring for, and spending time with, ourselves that sends our self-guilt into overdrive? Has our family and social conditioning been so effective that we believe that our first priority always has to be something or someone else? Or, are we avoiding the most important relationship in our lives — the one with ourselves?
“A-HA” Moment Two — Gaining Insight into Awareness
In my last post, I shared with you the first of two “A-Ha” moments I experienced during the past week. In this post, I want to share with you the second one, for which my gratitude goes to Michael A. Singer, author of the untethered soul — the journey beyond yourself. His writing led me to a profound realization that has freed me from worrying about the emotional pain and anger that continues to arise within me from time to time. Because it continues to be triggered by people and events in my life, I have worried about the extent of my healing and my ability to forgive. I have stressed about my seeming inability to move forward on my spiritual journey. Through Michael’s words of wisdom, I have realized that this pain and anger arises, but it also fades. It comes and it goes, but it isn’t who I […]
You Have Power Over Your Thoughts
A line in Lesson 44 of A Course in Miracles struck a deep chord within me this week: “Your thoughts cannot hold you to the world unless you give them the power to do so.” Left unchecked, our ego minds play endless tapes of criticism and judgment. How often do our unconscious thoughts assign blame and try to make someone else the “bad guy”? How frequently do we look for what’s wrong with others? This stream of blame, criticism, and judgment reflects our ego’s insatiable need to build up its shaky sense of self. We have to remember that all judgement is part of the ego’s world. The ego mind uses judgment to create separation between itself and others. It casts blame with the insane belief that it has to attack first to ensure its survival. The ego mind recognizes only other egos, and being like itself, the ego mind believes that if it doesn’t attack first, other egos will […]