We’ve been sold a story. It goes something like this: you are small, you are weak, you’re just one person, what difference can you make? Besides you are unworthy, you’re too this or not enough of that. You’re broken, a victim, so shut up, stand down, be submissive and struggle through.
The main intention of this story is to draw attention to our powerless over our own lives and over the events taking place in the world. If we believe the prescribed narrative we spend our time focused on our lack or smallness. In doing so we become saddened, frustrated, depressed, angry and hopeless. Our individual realities grow bleak as does the world’s condition. This particular story goes round and round upon itself with never a happy ending.
Fortunately, that story is false! It was concocted to keep us from remembering our truth. Pulling away the veil of illusion, we see clearly that we are powerful beyond measure! We are strong and vital. We effect change every moment by virtue of our being here. We are whole. Our bodies are made of the same substance as is contained within the stars of the Universe. We are indeed magnificent!!!
Claim your power now! Use your voice, stand up and be bold. Think about what is right and just for all. Let compassion, love, hope and kindness be your guides. You can offer these and like qualities silently or with actions each day.
Set intentions for the world through prayers, meditations, or with wishes. Focus your mind, heart and emotions on what you’d like to see for all. Send it out into the world with love. Start and end your day in this way. Know that it will be made manifest.
Quick, tell the others.
Something pretty amazing took place in my life several years ago. I can not recall the circumstances of my life and what was taking place at the time. The only thing I remember is the hearts.
I began to notice heart shapes in nature. Several times a week I would see a heart. They could be anywhere; in a cloud formation, in the separation of bubbles as I did the morning dishes, in the shape of leaves.
Once I was sent into the woods to sit quietly for an hour. When I looked up there was a leaf directly above my head. It had a heart-shaped hole in it where some tiny bug ate the leaf away. The shape was a perfect heart! I recall that I had difficulty not laughing out loud when I saw that one! I was supposed to be silent while there, so I laughed inside.
There was a time when I didn’t notice them at all, but I’m sure they were still there. After the flood of seeing them every week for several years I did not see them as frequently. I lost my awareness of them and the gift that they brought me for a while. During that time I was working on internal baggage. I did see them but it was much more rare.
The other day I went for a walk and noticed a heart-shaped leaf. Actually, it was a leaf that had been walked on and was broken, but the shape the pieces of the leaf took was a heart. I’ve been seeing them again for quite a while now. So long, in fact, that I can’t pinpoint the exact time that I began to notice them again. I see them everyday now, usually several different hearts in a day.
I’ve never questioned seeing them. I did not ever feel the need to ponder why they showed up for the first time or examine what is happening that I still see them today. There could be some deep message from them that I don’t yet understand, but it is a mote point to me. Here’s why: every single time I see them; whether it was the first time or is ongoing; regardless of if I share that experience with someone or not, I smile.
The hearts make me smile because it is like Mother Nature, the Universe, and the Divine, are sending me a message of love. A reminder that love is here right now. This is not even a conscious thought when I see them. I know, understand and receive the message of the hearts at a level of sacredness contained inside of me. My response is to smile. You may have guessed that the smile is from my heart. It is my answer to the hearts sent to me.
A Native American Elder once told me, “If we would remember to say thank you, we would never need another ceremony.” I’ll never forget him telling me this because it was also an instruction. I knew that at the time. We were sitting inside the tepee before the prayer ceremony began. It was just the two of us. He looked across from me and offered his statement about saying thank you.
I pondered this for some time. Over the years there were many traditional ceremonies that I was fortunate to attend. Actually, that is not accurate. Those teachings and ceremonies changed my life and that of my family deeply. We were all enriched. This reality was part of what prompted me to look hard at what I had been told by this Elder. There were people from all walks of life who came to the ceremonies. They prayed about themselves, their family, the tribe & they prayed for peace in the world.
Did this mean that people’s lives, including mine were a mess because we forgot to say thank you, I wondered? Was the lack of peace in the world and within ourselves related to our ineptitude in offering thanks? Could the answer be this simple, I wondered?
He undoubtedly sensed my struggle to understand because he went on to say, “In the beginning the people, the Native people, looked around. All they saw was beauty. Everywhere they looked they encountered beauty. They thought about how to express to Creator what they thought and felt about being gifted with beauty everywhere. After much thought and discussion they decided that all the could say that was, thank you.”
I thanked him for sharing this with me. I’m sure he knew that I would continue to work with the concept of saying thank you and the critical value it has on keeping life in balance. I looked long and hard at prayers and ceremonies. I saw the people requesting them or participating in them and their suffering. It opened me to compassion for them and myself. I have a practice of offering thanks many times throughout each day. Doing so has me discovering or rediscovering some of the beauty that those original people knew was imbued in all of life. I still have the opportunity to attend ceremonies and pray. When I get to do this I remember to say thank you, for the teachings, for the love, for the well-being of all the children of life yet to come.
The practice and remembrance of saying thank you may seem small but I have found it to be powerful. Offer thanks from your heart, from the wholeness of your being, from your Divine internal spark, as I imagine those Native ancestors did. Maybe one day we will gather only to offer thanks because all we see, feel and experience is beauty everywhere. Never underestimate the value of saying thank you. Let it restore you to beauty. Aho!
Ah, the many shades of green. Recent rain has awakened the Earth all around me revealing astonishing hues of green! At first glance it may seem that the land is simply green. Closer inspection led me to discover that the hills, the trees, and even some of the flowers flaunt their distinct color of green. Taken all together they create a symphony of green that is quite marvelous to behold!
They have worked some magic upon me, these subtle tones of green. I find myself observing them and noticing a gentle smile on my face. The muscles in my body seem to ease. I feel a gentleness come over me as I breathe deeply and smoothly surrounded by green. I would go so far as to say, I have fallen in love with the many shades of green.
This green manifestation is present for a brief moment in time, then a deeper green permeates the whole. I encourage you to take some time to lift your head up and look around. See how many varieties of green you find. Let them fill your senses. It may be that you engage their magic too!
The true nature of any spiritual journey is one that leads to the self. This essential goal is often elusive. How does one find the self, that inner place of infinite stillness, silence and connection? There are many paths and modalities that guide one toward self-discovery but how do you know which to choose? That is part of a process of finding the self. Does that sound like a riddle? It is not meant to be one. All of this points to the starting place.
Most of us don’t embark on a journey to find our self because we want this above all else or because our life is going so great. Quite the opposite is true. The search may begin as a result of our life falling apart; everything known has been removed or morphed into something foreign and scary. Or it may be that we are carrying a weight on our heart, mind or emotions. In short, what we have been doing is not working to bring us peace. We are desperately unhappy and likely overwhelmed.
This is a critical time! If you find yourself in any of these places or a similar place don’t give up since this is the very time that avenues to finding the self begins to present themselves. They are not always readily apparent because during this time we are absorbed with is happening to us rather than noticing what about us is unchanging. Don’t worry; the Universe is sending us things designed to capture our attention. These are the prompts to follow as they direct us to a path that can assist us with finding the unchanging inner part of our essence that is the true self.
The prompts may arrive in a multitude of ways. Perhaps you have a dream that shows you doing something that you have never done before like yoga, or you receive mail for a meditation class, a friend asks you to attend a workshop or spiritual gathering with them, a book falls off of a shelf in front of you, the radio plays a song or advertisement that gets your attention. The possibilities are endless. What is important is that you take the initiative to investigate, follow up and show up for these offerings. For example; if a book does fall off of a shelf in front of you, READ IT! Don’t put it back on the shelf; it is without a doubt meant for you to help you with what is happening in your life and within you. Consider these happenings as guidance from the Divine to lead you to finding and loving yourself.
With so much information coming into our senses each day it is important to know what to act upon. This is true for many aspects of our lives but it is imperative in the quest of discovering our true nature or self. Proceed with the understanding that the prompts from the Universe have a different feel to them. They cause you to notice and if you pause for just a moment you will likely feel something within you that connects with whatever the prompt happens to be at the time. This is how you begin to cultivate awareness. Over time the simple act of pausing, listening and responding to this assistance offered by the Universal Divine will guide us unfailingly to our true self.