Take a break from thinking

Who has ever tried to take a break from thinking?  Certainly anyone who attempts to meditate is trying to stop the thoughts or at least notice the gaps between thoughts.

Are you the voice in your head? Or are you beyond the voice in your head?  I’m sure you’ve noticed that there can be one or more voices inside offering different or even conflicting view points.  I’m sure you have attempted to shut off the voices that cause you disturbance.  Like the one that admonishes you for eating that piece of cake or critiques your behavior at a party.  Or how about the one who reviews how you handled a challenging situation?  These are just some of the voices that can show up regularly.  These are the voices that cause us suffering especially when we believe what is being said.

Then there are other ones that make us feel good about ourselves.  Like, “hey, you resisted the urge to have that cake; way to go!”  Or the one who pats you on the back for saying just the right thing to a friend in need.  I’m sure without even asking, that the voices are constant, all day long, and don’t stop until you are unconscious when you sleep. It is considered normal to live this way but it is exhausting!! It’s like living on a rollercoaster, one moment feeling like the dregs of the earth and the next feeling elated.   I’m feeling tired just writing about it!!

Michael Singer in his book The Unteathered Soul says;  “if you’re saying, what voice? I don’t have a voice in my head. That’s the voice! “   You may ask why am I making you aware of this.  Isn’t it normal?  It is normal for us to think and to be aware of our thoughts.  In fact we do this all the time without effort.   Problems arise when we get overly identified with negative, self critical or habitual thinking that keeps us caught in an unending loop of suffering.  It is this very suffering that causes us to seek and find relief from our own mind.  As a result we grow in ways that we would never consciously choose.

The major point I want to make here is that you have a choice.  You can choose to pay attention to the thoughts or you can choose to allow them to pass.  It may take some practice to be able to watch a strong habitual thought and not go with it but I recommend giving this a try.  Your freedom lies on the other side of these thoughts that are designed to keep you in suffering.  This does not mean that feelings will not arise.  Strong thoughts generate strong feelings in our bodies and that can make it more challenging.  Can you allow the feelings state to be there but not indulge the negative thinking that accompanies it?  If you can practice this and not believe the thinking pretty soon the feeling state will also dissipate.  Eckhart Tolle’ says, “take one conscious breath.”  Remember you are not your thoughts and you are not your feelings.  You are the one who sees both therefore they cannot be who you are.

Why is this helpful?  When you remember that you are the one watching than a tremendous  unburdening can occur.  You recognize your true position and you don’t have to identify with the unending thoughts and emotions.  You are greater than all this.  It is difficult to explain how this has an effect on your being.  You have to practice and have an experience in order to understand its true power.

If this is of interest to you and would like to explore this topic in more depth please check out Mooji at mooji.org or Eckhart Tolle’ at eckharttolle.com or contact me and I will help point you in the right direction lmalfaoneheart@gmail.com.

The Attitude of Gratitude

imagesDuring the holidays it’s especially timely to talk about gratitude.  Energetically it opens energy and allows for greater flow because resistance is gone.   Without resistance life can flow and synchronicities can come to you with ease.  You will find yourself in the right place at the right time and meeting just the right people when you need them.  Gratitude puts you in harmony with whatever is unfolding in your life.  It’s like a big “thank you”  or “yes” to the universe.  

Even when life is challenging there are always things to be grateful for.  Simple things like; a hot shower, the way the sun streams through the window or a loving pet.  When you shift into looking at life this way its like moving from manual to automatic.  You are changing your state out of a heavier more stagnant energy to a lighter more flowing state.  

The reason that you will experience greater flow is simply explained and has to do with the universal law of attraction.   This universal law states that like energy will attract like energy, “like attracts like.”  If you are feeling low, worried, fearful or angry on a regular basis then this energy will attract the same from the world around you.  Many of us are unknowingly in this place and contributing to our own suffering but not really aware of it. This is why to looking with more gratitude can begin to make a change. 

The last point I want to make is about tracking what you are grateful for.  A gratitude journal can be a very powerful tool for this.  I know what you’re thinking and probably have some resistance to this idea but you didn’t get into your current state overnight and it will take some effort to get out of it.  Each night review your day, pick out the at least  3 things that made you feel grateful and write them down.  Reading them when you feel down or anytime you feel called can help you shift your energy.  If possible when you review your gratitude journal try and remember how you felt about the things you wrote down.  Feel the feeling in your body and allow it to chase away the blues. It’s like downloading new software to a computer and replacing the old feelings with the new.  This step of “feeling it” is vital for manifesting the new in your life.  Try it for a month and see what happens. You might actually enjoy it! 

When you start doing this you will feel uplifted and energized.  Change is an inside job and you can begin today by looking at life through the eyes of gratitude.  

Peak Experience – A sign post to the Divine

Have you ever had a peak experience?  You would know it if you had because it is such an exhilarating experience that you wouldn’t forget it.  

My experience of a peak experience seemed to be inspired while I was riding my motorcycle.  I was riding in the beautiful countryside with fields on either side of me and the sun was low and golden and illuminated everything.  The next thing I knew I was aware in a way that was completely different from my usual sense of perceiving. It was IMG_0995heightened, alert, peaceful and the joy that welled up inside is difficult to describe.  All was not only well but perfect in my world!  It left as mysteriously as it arose but I felt somehow shifted  and changed by it.  Later I came to understand that this experience was a small glimpse of my true self and a sign post  pointing me directly to my divine essence.

Abraham Maslow discovered this concept  and describes it this way:    

A peak experience is a moment accompanied by a euphoric mental state often achieved by self-actualizing individuals. The concept was originally developed by Abraham Maslow in 1964, who describes peak experiences as “rare, exciting, oceanic, deeply moving, exhilarating, elevating experiences that generate an advanced form of perceiving reality, and are even mystic and magical in their effect upon the experimenter.                                                                                                                                         -Wikipedia


A peak experience can’t be brought on through any kind of effort, they just happen. They can be inspired by incredible beauty, awe, very intense emotions or a near death experience to name a few.  My understanding, now, of what happens is that the personal lens, memories, conditioning and beliefs, completely drop. You are thrust into the present moment so powerfully that nothing remains to block your true self.  The true self can be referred to as the God-self, divine self, pure being, brahman and many other names but the important thing to note is, you won’t  ever forget it.  Why?  When you have an authentic experience of your true nature it needs no explanation or confirmation. It is completely unique against the backdrop of your usual perceiving.  

It seems to be like a mini experience of self-realization. Unencumbered by personal projections; we have direct access to the pure being.  Masters throughout history have pointed  to this undeniable truth but it is most powerful when you identify this direct experience in your own life.  

I have heard many people say, “I’m not a spiritual person” and I would beg to differ.  Since I have had a few of these experiences in my life I have asked others if they have had similar experiences. Universally almost all have responded that “yes” they have experienced this in their lives.  It is the divine dimension knocking on your door and saying,  “Hey, there’s more where this came from.” 

I can only imagine what the world could be like if we where all ready to embrace this simple but profound truth.  That who you are is already perfect but is covered up by your ego.  Maybe it would be good to get curious about this.  

The Spiritual Living Room

Here is a short recap of last nights Spiritual Living Room. I hope to see you next month.

The evening began with a meditation bringing us into presence. When we all settled and became still the energy shift in the room was palpable. Space opened up as our awareness shifted away from doing to simply being.

We talked about how creating the time in our busy lives to “be” had to be scheduled in and given priority. Everything has become so immediate and fast paced that we have to remember to take time for ourselves and unplug. The gifts of this practice can be felt quickly with less stress in the body and clearer more spacious thinking.
We allow thoughts and feelings to move through and focus on the the knowing “I exist”, “I am.” This is the life force energy that we share with all living things.    It is here that the true self can be revealed spontaneously giving rise to clarity, wisdom, joy and healing.
This is why we are here to remember who and what we really are. I hope that the Spiritual Living Room becomes a sacred space for spiritual discovery.
The next meeting will be on Thursday Dec. 19th at 7pm and I will send out an announcement in early December.
With Love

What you Resist Persists

What to do with strong emotions and feelings that feel like they take you over and disrupt your peace?

Our instinctual response is to try to get the uncomfortable feeling to go away or stop as soon as possible.  We try to push them away, suppress and otherwise distract ourselves from our feelings. Addictions of all kinds are also often connected to suppression of feelings. 

This approach actually works in the opposite way in which it is intended.  Our feelings seem to intensify and gain strength when they are resisted  because they are fueled by the very energy we use to resist them.  In case you haven’t noticed it takes a lot to hold back a strong feeling that is trying to arise.

Instead try something a little different and allow the feelings to be there and even invite them to wash over you and to fully feel them.  They really can’t hurt you.  They can be uncomfortable but they do more harm when they are suppressed and not allowed to come up and be fully felt. In fact it is well known that ongoing suppression can be a very unhealthy way to live effecting us emotionally first and then if that outlet is shut down it can manifest as an array of physical symptoms from back pain to headaches.  Of course, not everyone is effected the same way but you can be sure if you are holding something in you are paying some price either energetically, physically or emotionally.   

Many times I hear people saying they are afraid of what will come out if they really let it be there.  Do not believe this thought it is meant to keep you stuck and unable to move forward.  The ego and mind simply wants to maintain the status quo and help you to survive and if that means staying stuck forever than so be it.  Fortunately these feelings will persist until felt and understood or until whatever needs to be learned is learned.  So if something is to scary  then I recommend that you seek help so that you can finally fully witness and allow these feelings to move all the way through you.  This will free you and energize you to move forward in your life.

“If you want to be free of energies, you must allow them to pass though you instead of hiding them inside”

-Michael Singer                                                                                                                                                –  from the book “The Untethered Soul”