The Choices You Can Make and How To Make Them
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Does a butterfly crawl along a leaf thinking to itself “I was a caterpillar therefore I must only crawl along this leaf”? No - while it might acknowledge what it was, it does not let that dictate what it has to be now.
I remember when I first gave up electronic engineering to walk a Spiritual/Therapy path and telling my mother what I had decided to do. She asked why I would want to look inside myself as all that was there was trouble. She was right, there is trouble there but there is also great healing. We are generally frightened to look inside ourselves because we believe what we find there will only confirm to ourselves our discordant self-judgements and weaknesses.
The first part of any healing is acknowledging what needs to be healed and then working through it, all the time understanding, that is who we were but not who we have to be.
Our behavior is a direct manifestation of our consciousness. While we might wish to be better humans by trying to think in more enlightened way and then trying to behave in a more enlightened way, the real test of our progress is in our lives with the situations that arise and how we behave in those situations.
Our life situations are the universe's way of setting our exams, enabling to prove to ourselves that we have mastered that thought/feeling/behaviour lesson. Of course there are always re-tests if we do not pass!
When we look around we can see that there are so many changes in our life, our jobs, our technology, the growth of our children, our bodies as they age, where we live and our relatives and friends as they leave this mortal coil to move on. With all this change that we know and accept, why is that we still try and resist it? Of course, there is a difference between change we instigate and change that is thrust upon us.
However, change happens, trying to be the boulder rolling up stream against change, is exhausting. Allowing the stream of change to push us along is not good for us as individuals as we do not feel as though we have any control over our lives, a truly bitter medicine. Allowing the stream of change to flow around us means that we are being a part of the evolution of this great universe while maintaining our-self. As a species and as individuals we are so extremely resilient, we can adapt. Our belief in ourselves is one of the key things that will mitigate how we manage change.
The flowing stream of change brings new life, experiences and growth, while the still pond is stagnation and well …… just a lot of mosquitos!!!
Faith should never be blind. Faith is always objective and empirical.
That is how a solid foundation is built and a validated connection to spirit is made.
When you have headache you do not give a pill to someone else. When you have a stiff back you do not pay for your friend to and get a massage.
Peace in this world will only start to coalesce and grow when people stop looking outside of themselves for a solution and start looking within.
A leaky vessel will never maintain its water level unless it is continually replenished. So it is when we seek overtly or covertly self-worth. Only by finding our own self-worth and sealing the leak will we feel full and then be able to overflow with any additional praise.
We should be focussing on how can we rediscover our own self Worth. It is not like we never had any, it is just that our life experiences have buried large swathes of it somewhere inside us. We can start by looking at our good qualities no matter how small and ‘feeling’ what they are like as we completely immerse ourselves in one them at a time. Do not dismiss even the smallest quality off hand, by paying reverence to even the smallest is the first step in growing our own self worth.
This #RenovatioSutra explains how there can be four voices with which we can talk. Generally speaking (most of the time) we use one of them unless we do our internal work and then we move from that ‘level’ to the next one, that is, movement from the timid to the compassionate. Many times we think that if we are not being timid then we must be standing in ‘our power’ and that will mean standing in our discordant energy and interacting from that place. In other words jumping into the same grumpy feelings as the other person, so now you are both thrashing around in the mud together.
There is a third option apart from the fight or flight (timid or aggressive) options that we are so accustomed to hearing about and that is the compassionate and wise choice and that will be covered in the next #RevovatioSutra release in the form of a parable called “The Boulder in the Stream”. In the meantime take a look around at the people you know and reflect and see who generally speaks with what type of voice and when.
When you give your heart to someone it is never selfless.
You are always expecting something in return. How loving is that? If you offer to share something with someone then it is a pleasure when accepted and no big deal if not accepted. Doesn’t that sound more like the love we should have between people?
As we walk our spiritual path by shedding the parts of ourselves we thought we were, it is all to easy to start telling others what they must and must not do to ‘become’ as happy as us.
We can not push people to peace and fulfillment they must be drawn to it, like a humming bird is drawn to nectar.
The more we allow our soul nature to shine out past our personality the more people will be drawn to want to discover their own soul nature.
Imagine that you never judged yourself, then where in your heart would you find a place to judge others?
In those dark times in our lives it can seem that all we are doing is having to make sure we survive from the current moment to the next. We can find ourselves asking the question — “Why is this happening to me?”
We might also find ourselves asking another question — "Why am I here, apart from breathing, eating and propagating, do I have a purpose and what is it?" This of course is a question that has been asked for many an age. I believe that we do. Not necessarily to save the planet or some other exalted purpose but a more personal journey. A journey to discover how to be a better human by either learning how to behave in certain ways or how not to behave in certain ways, which leads us to ask the question — "why bother at all?" For what reason do we even need to learn this? Is there another aspect of ourselves that we do not pay much attention too, an aspect much deeper than the one we see when we look in the mirror and is this deeper aspect the reason that we have a purpose? Does this deeper aspect get created when we are born and then cease to exist when we die? If that is the case, then what is the point of learning anything at all? If however it continues beyond this mortal coil, then is it in a state of learning and growth?
So who is it now we see when we look in a mirror and deep into our own eyes. While not everything that happens to us might be preordained, there might just be a reason some things happen and while the reason might not be initially obvious if we have the courage to look at how we can be a better human during and because of the experience then maybe, just maybe, we will be able to answer the question, "Why is this happening to me?"
So many times and in so many ways we try to improve who and how we are with ourselves and the world around us. Initially we try the easiest way then gradually more and more 'challenging' ways all up to our internal comfort zone limit and then perhaps only with limited or no success.
In the end we might just accept or learn to live with who and how we are. Profound growth only happens when we go to the edge of our internal confront zone and take a step outside it.
Awakening does not mean having to settle for less.
It means accepting with grace what we can and can not have.
Why is it what offends one person another can ignore? What is it in us that is so fragile, so insecure of it being threatened such that when we observe something that comes into conflict with it, we react by being offended? If we were supremely happy or confident with that little piece of us how could anything be perceived as threatening.
These questions first came to my awareness many many years ago while still living in the UK. There would be a program on the TV and a few days or a week later there would be have to an apology by the network as they had received many letters from people writing about how the program or a part of it had offended them. I remember sitting there wondering why if at the first moment they felt offended they did not change the channel? Why did they feel obliged to continue watching it? Was it to make sure that they were properly offended and not just a little bit?
While I was reflecting on these questions I started wondering at why we even get offended at all. There must be a perception inside us so when we observe something we compare it to that part of us and then decide if we are to be offended or not.
The elephant in the room is of course judgement, judgement that we are better than others. At this point I asked myself -“What gives me the right to assume that I am better than someone else?” I found myself saying - “It is my morals and my beliefs” but morals and beliefs are not the truth, they vary between friends, between people within a country and between countries. I contemplated that I did not want to be someone based on what was true (unique to me) but wanted the truth (universal). I did not want to create myself based on parochial non-spiritual judgements. I wanted to be a better human and that meant standing up in my awareness and using that view to create myself and not lying down on the ground and using that as my perspective view.
So when ever I feel offended by something I consider that I have been given a gift, as a light as just been shone inside me on a part of me that makes me smaller than who I want to be. A part of me that I can contemplate and work through.
Our behavior with respect to revenge can be as obvious as a “slap around the face with a wet fish” (expression from my local area in the UK) or as hidden as the noise a tree makes when it falls in the forest when there’s no-one there to hear it. Meaning how we behave, can vary from us making a very obvious overt choice to seek vengeance, to believing that we are behaving from another less destructive aspect but really are still seeking revenge in a way that is more covert to our awareness. This way is rationalized away with some logical arguments based on our own discordant perceptions.
An example might be how some people react when a perpetrator is brought to justice and the victim or relatives are not satisfied with the result and are “seeking justice”. At this point they have the justice from the legal system but are not happy with it and want more of a punishment. So are they seeking justice or greater revenge? Perhaps they start to protest peacefully, then maybe a faction feels as though more violence is needed. Cars get burned and shop windows broken and shops get looted. Then some one gets badly injured or dies. Have they got their justice now or just become a different aspect of the original perpetrator?
There is a beautiful piece of land atop a hill, sheep graze on it, lovers share a sunset and individuals contemplate their life and where they are in the universe. It is open to all to share and enjoy.
One day man declares it as sacred and now only a select few are allowed on it. It can now be desecrated and becomes okay to violate one’s fundamental belief of not killing to seek vengeance for the land’s sake.
How fortunate for the land that once shared itself with so many and on so many different levels that it now has people who will kill and maim in its name.
The most enduring lessons we learn are the ones that we practically experienced for ourselves, not the ones that we were told to believe or have faith in. Why shouldn’t our spirituality be any different?
It can seem that from the moment we wake up to the moment that we drop off to sleep we are thinking - endlessly. Sometimes our thoughts are useful because we are planning what to do at home or at work and in those situations we are focused and on a ‘particular train of thought’.
In times like this the constant thinking does not seem to be tiring as we are riding the crest of a very productive wave. But what happens when we are not focussed or keep drifting off our ‘train of thought’ because we are worrying about the future or are dragging the past with us into our future like a ball and chain. These types of thoughts are not conducive to our well being and drain our jus d’vie, our energy, our enjoyment of life.
So how can we stop them? How can we claim back some inner peace? Trying to stop them with our will is a bit like herding cats. We need to come at the solution from a more circuitous route. A technique that works for me is to imagine that my thoughts are a ticker tape flow of words. Initially moving very quickly past my eyes and then I’ll slow down my thoughts in order to be able to actually see the words that make up the thoughts. Once I have them slowed down enough that I can see individual letters, I visualize that I am holding two consecutive words in my right and left hands and then force them apart. I then use my strength of will to hold them stationary and look into the gap between them. As I look into the gap my mind becomes still and in that silence I can feel the stillness that is always within me and in the universe around me.
Our voice is a direct expression of our consciousness. Do not tell the world who we want to be, show the world via the words we choose, the feelings behind them and the way in which they are said - our voice