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September 11th, 2011 at 7:08 PM - In Memorium

The words below were written for the first anniversary of 9-11. It seems appropriate to reprint them today on the 10th anniversary of that event that changed all of our lives.

They were human beings having normal Tuesday morning experiences.

They were men and women who had just stepped onto airplanes and out of subways and parking garages, busily packing their brains with thoughts of the work to be done. The were focused idealists and distracted materialists. They were cock-eyed optimists and grumbling pessimists and arbitrary agnostics and devout atheists. They were Christians and Jews and Muslims and Buddhists and Christian Scientists and Religious Scientists and Scientologi8sts and scientists. They were gay and stright and stright-laced and lesbians and labor leaders and hedonists and humanists and humanitarians and vegetarians and vagrants.

Chances are that no noble cause sent them to work or to the airposrt that day. No brass bands marked their march into that war zone. No parades heralded their sacrifice. They walked innocently, stumbled awkwardly, all the way to glory.

When the call came they were waiting for elevators, and email, return calls from clients they talked to on Monday, and seat belt signs to go off. They were laughing, and grumbling, and praying for raises, and telling bad jokes, and some, most likely, were even taking the name of the Lord, someone's God, in vain.

They were involuntary heroes. God bless them. And God bless the families and loved ones who mourn them. No one asked them if they were willing to make the sacrifice.

And God forgive the spiritual arrogance of those who, in the name of God, took their airplanes and stopped the laughter and interrupted the prayers, and the jokes, and the future. They thought they knew what they were doing but they could not have known. They could not have known; not one life at a time, one laugh interrupted, one punch-line left hanging. They could not have known the stories of the lives unfinished. It is too terrible a thing to know, too much for a human heart to hold.

They could not have known. And, if in the moment before impact, they were given a glimpse into that window through which all is seen and known, if they saw through the eyes of any God and they knew, then God bless them, for surely, in that moment they understood hell. It is a terrible thing to have to be right.

We are called now to pick up the banner, to say the prayers, to move forward. It is not they who call us, their voices are stilled; bhut it is their memory that unites us, and more. There is much to be done.

Let us pray. In prayer we will come to know what is ours to do and what is God's. Then let us do what we are called in prayer to do... to make this world a better place, not just for ourselves, but for everyone.

This I know, we are all called to be heroes and this time, we must volunteer.

March 15th, 2011 at 2:23 PM - Winter Weight

A friend commented that she was bothered by the winter weight that she had put on, and had yet to take off. I wonder how many of us are carrying around "weight", heaviness, residue of another time, that we haven't yet shed?

My thought is this.. things that "bother" us - things that weigh on our minds and hearts - are there to nudge, not to guilt us. They are meant to be motivators, not guilt producers.

We enjoyed every bite of those winter comfort foods, but spring is only days away and it, by its nature, is a time of greater light and lightness.

If we allowed ourselves the warmth of the comfort food in winter, we can equally allow ourselves the lightness of spring.

It is always more about mental attitude than anything else.   

Step with me into springtime and watch the weight of winter fall away.

 

February 13th, 2011 at 4:18 PM - Fixing Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is such an interesting holiday.

If you have a Sweetie you have a slight chance of having him/her actually saying or doing what it is you would really like to have him/her say or do. Unless of course your Sweetie is a psychic.

If you don't have a Sweetie (and you wish you did) you have a good chance of spending the day thinking there must be something wrong with you, the world, or God. After all, God is Love, isn't that right. And if God is Love, shouldn't God be able/willing to put a little more of that Love into your life?

But have you considered:

†  God/Love is the life within you... if it isn't showing in your daily life could it be that you are not letting what is "within you" out?

†  The gifts of God are not limited to Valentine's Day (or other Love related holidays and celebrations) but rather are instantly available every day, regardless of weather, world conditions, or your mood.

†  The gifts of God are much more precious than a greeting card or a box of chocolates. And as for flowers, you want flowers? Then it might serve you to consider the lilies of the field, and the roses in your garden, and the wildflowers, and even the errant little blossom that works its way up through the pavement... get my drift?

If you want love, look around. You have Divine Love in abundance.

Now, if its acknowledgement you want on Valentine's Day (or any day for that matter) then may I suggest that you take matters into your own, perfectly capable hands.

Steps you can take immediately:

†  If you feel bad because you didn't get a Valentine Card, fix it. Send yourself one*.

†  If e-cards aren't good enough, go out and buy yourself the perfect card and mail it. So what if it arrives a little late... caring, not timing, is what is important here.

†  Give yourself a present: flowers, chocolate, a great book? What would you really like?

†  Take yourself to dinner (invite a friend or two, it will be even more fun).

†  Start knowing that you are, and always have been, God's Valentine.

OK, so isn't the same as having a Sweetie who buys you Valentine gifts. But it might just be better. You won't have to pretend to like something you really didn't want, there are only calories involved if you choose them, and there won't be an unrealistic expectations on anyone's part.

 

* Click here for lovely, romantic, humorous or just plain mushy Valentine's e-cards.

 

February 1st, 2011 at 6:19 PM - Love Month

February is, I've been told, Love Month.

It all has to do with Valentine's Day, and flowers, and chocolates, and greeting cards, and sweethearts.

As if one month could really contain Love.

I mean, isn't Life really all about love?

The things we have done, and are doing, and will do, for Love... ahh.

This I do know, if I really make it all about Love, February is bound to be a great month.

Imagine:

In the forefront of my mind... Love

Motivating my desires... Love

Inciting my passions... Love

Behind every action... Love

Within every gift... Love

Lighting every fire... Love

Calming every fear... Love.

You get the idea, don't you?

Start with Love.

Come from Love.

Act with Love.

Think loving thoughts.

Be Love in expression.

 

Trust me, Love, it's going to be a great month.

 

January 10th, 2011 at 2:35 PM - How are you doing?

The first month of 2011 is now more than a week old. How are you doing with those New Year's Resolutions?

Ø  A number of people are still trying to keep their resolutions.

Ø  A number of people have already given up on their resolutions.

Ø  And a number of people didn't make any resolutions at all because they didn't want to live with the guilt and frustration of not getting them accomplished.

 

While the third option may be the most popular, it really isn't conducive to getting things done or making the changes that we envision for our lives.

Here's a better idea: Forget "resolving", or "trying", or feeling guilty and frustrated.

Decide what it is you want and, in the words of the Nike, the Greek goddess of Victory, "Just do it!"

It really can be that simple. 

 

January 7th, 2011 at 4:31 PM - Personal Epiphanies

I had an Epiphany yesterday. Actually, we all did.

Yes, yesterday was January 6 and yes, that is the day that "The Epiphany", the day that the Three Wise Men encountered the Christ child, is celebrated.

Historically the date is suspect, but that isn't terribly important. What is important is that an epiphany occurred.

Epiphany is a glorious moment of revelation; an ah-ha moment of the highest order.

What is interesting about epiphanies is that they seem to appear out of nowhere, light up the sky (or our lives, or our minds), pull back the curtain of doubt or confusion, and bring us to a new level of enlightenment!

Like a bolt of lightning an epiphany comes - and then, like a bolt of lightning, it is gone; leaving behind a new awareness and a sense of awe. And then life goes on.

While the moment may reveal something fantastic and be heavenly, it isn't the moment itself that is important (pleasant though it may be). What is important is what one does with the revelation. If we get too caught up in the glory of the moment, we can end up spending the rest of our lives waiting/wishing for its return (or mourning its loss). But if we allow the revelation to be paramount, if we take the information or the insight or the ah-ha and use it to motivate our ongoing thoughts and actions, then the revelation can take us to new insights, new understandings, new moments of epiphany.

Some epiphanies seem greater than others. But I suspect that we rarely know how much of an impact an epiphany  can have upon a life until we actually put the information to use. I had an epiphany yesterday. I'm sure we all did. One glorious moment of awareness.

I know what I'm doing with mine. What are you doing with yours?

 

November 11th, 2010 at 5:39 PM - Honor the heroes

Lincoln said it best:

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate -- we cannot consecrate -- we cannot hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

 

Some words should never die.

 

May we honor and appreciate those whose lives and dedication insure our freedom; not just today, but every day.

 

November 10th, 2010 at 8:55 AM - The world is altered today

The world is altered today.

In ways seen and unseen, directed by forces known and unknown, the world is richer and poorer, broader and narrower, safer and more challenging, filled with opportunities and obstacles, blessed and cursed.

What we choose to see, what  we choose to focus upon, what captures and holds our attention, what we give credence to, determines how this day will be.

We can see the glass as half empty or half full. We can see the donut or the hole. We can choose the light or the shadows.

Life would be easier with specific guidance, but some choices are so obvious that directions really do seem unnecessary.

Nonetheless, if you are still looking for specific direction you could look here.

 

November 3rd, 2010 at 12:50 PM - So goes the nation

It is all over but the shouting.

The votes have been counted. The winners have been declared. The multi-million dollars worth of television commercials have (thank God) disappeared into the nothingness from which they came.

Now the work begins. Will the campaign promises be kept? Will the sides put away their differences and work together for the common good? Will seemingly bright people assume responsibility for the position they are in and find a way to solve the challenges that face our communities, our states and our nation?

Time will tell. This I know: just as each of us had a voice, through our vote, in determining the results of the elections, so too now we must not abdicate the responsibility for our lives to those who are assuming office.

Whether or not the candidates and the propositions that we voted for were victorious, the die is cast and the winners will write the next chapter in our history.

On a personal level, much is the same. Now is the time for each of us to put away our differences and work together for a common good. Now is the time for us to remember to keep our promises, to claim responsibility for the position we are in and to find the ways to solve the challenges that we face.

As the individual goes, so goes the nation. How will you write the next chapter in your history?

 

October 30th, 2010 at 1:14 PM - What are you supposed to be?

The streets will be full this weekend of ghosts, ghouls, witches, pumpkins and politicians. This is not a commentary on next Tuesday's elections - but simply a warning that it is Halloween weekend and, with all the costumes that will be on parade, if you really want to stand out, dare to dress as yourself.

I wonder how often we do that; show up as we really are.

In her monthly newsletter Carolyn Myss seems to say the opposite. She writes, "We really don't need costumes to scare people on Halloween. We just have to take a real look at the values in our society that are possessing us like lab rats - that should scare the best of us.  Let's just go as we are....".  (Read the whole article here)

What I believe is this, too often we dress for what we believe is success: the face we show to the world is what we believe the world expects, or wants to see. We base our idea of "who we are" and "how we should be/behave" on ads in GQ, commercials on American Idol, or pictures in People Magazine.

We forget that there is more to us than that. We forget that under the costumes, under the glitter, under the glitz, each of us is, first and foremost, created in the image of Creation Itself.

We don't need to pretend to be someone, or something, else. When we remember who we really are, when we remember the power we possess, when we remember that with that knowledge all things are possible, we don't need pretense. When we remember that where we are God is, it is enough.

You are enough. When you care enough to send the very best, go as yourself.

 

October 28th, 2010 at 3:32 PM - Friendly Fire

There are many military phrases that fascinate me.  Many more baffle me.  I am particularly challenged by the concept of lives lost to “friendly fire”.

 

Fire, in my experience, can cook your food, it can warm your home, it can create a setting in which you may cuddle up with a good book, a good friend, or a romantic interest.  That’s a friendly fire.  How friendly is any fire that kills – even though it may have been launched with the best of intentions?

 

That question challenges me.  It is that concept that must be dealt with, not just on the military battlefield – but in the day to day skirmishes and battles of our daily lives.

 

How much friendly fire are we responsible for?  How many sniping words, thoughtless commentaries, and arbitrary accusations have we launched – with the best of intentions, of course.

 

When military “friendly fire” hits an inappropriate target the usual explanation is “We didn’t know they were there.” But when we are taking verbal pot shots at people in our own lives, when we are demeaning people in our offices, when we are fault finding in our families, even though we may believe that it is “for their own good”, we cannot deny our awareness of their existence.

 

And we might just want to consider the repercussions. The military brass or the media may be able to suppress or “clean up” the details of “friendly fire” from the general public but we cannot hide our “friendly fire” from Spirit, nor can we be excused from accountability.

 

What goes around comes around  What we send out, fire-off, put-out, comes back to us.  That’s the way it is in war and in peace.

 

Let us keep our sights high rather than low.  Let us maintain our thoughts and words in a spiritual high-ground.  Let us cease launching mental and verbal attacks (even though we may have the best of intentions).  Let us return to that warm and friendly fire in which the intellect and friendship and peace and even love may meet.

 

October 23rd, 2010 at 6:01 PM - Thinking and then some

Einstein called it  "gedankenexperiment". Great word, it means an experiment carried out only in thought. Might have worked for Einstein... most of us need to do a bit more.

I believe in the power of an idea. Everything begins in a thought. No man made article, service or near-miracle would exist if it hadn't first been an idea in mind.

But it can't stop there. A good idea is only as good as the action that follows it.

Is there something you want? something you need? something you deeply desire? Then go do what you need to do.

You know what that is. You really do.

Now just go do it.

 

October 20th, 2010 at 2:05 PM - Good advice

I'm a huge fan of Seth Godin's blog, I read it daily, both for entertainment and inspiration. He is, after all a very bright and successful writer with a proven track record. I consider him my on-line mentor and muse. Today he really hit a nerve.

This morning's blog, Deliberately Uniformed, speaks to what appears to be a conscious, intentional, dumbing-down of humanity. He calls it a rant, but it really is a call to conscious awareness.

What I know is this, whether we are talking about spirituality or business, the principle remains the same: we have to stay awake. We have to be consciously aware, not only of the world around us, but of the power that surrounds us.

We cannot buy into appearances, mass hysteria, bad news bearers, or commercial come-ons. We have to think for ourselves. We have to think.

Godin writes, "more people than ever are creators. More people than ever go to work to use their minds, not just their hands. And more people than ever have a platform to share their point of view. I think that raises the bar for our understanding of how the world works".

His outlandish suggestions include reading blogs (I suggest  you start with his), reading books, and watching TED videos.

I agree with all of them.

 

October 19th, 2010 at 1:52 PM - Are you connected?

For centuries the great minds and mystics have told us that with God all things are possible. And for centuries humanity has turned in that direction, hoping and praying that the Infinite would in fact do the impossible in our lives.

 

And sometimes it worked.  Sometimes.

 

It’s all about connection.  Like latent electricity, the power is there and it is pretty much unlimited, but until we tune in, turn on and connect its not much use to us individually.  That’s the way it is, and complaining about it is about as useful as complaining about your lamp, or television, or coffee pot not functioning when you haven’t plugged them into the power.  All it does is aggravate you and it doesn’t effect the appliance at all.

 

Spirit is unlimited.  But this unlimited Spirit does not express itself in our lives without our consent or participation.  It is up to each of us to recognize it, tune into it and connect with it if we wish to use it in productive, constructive ways in our lives

 

If you wish to use the Unlimited Power that is at your disposal make a conscious effort to connect.

 

Connect to the energy mentally: pray, read, meditate, and contemplate the presence of Spirit in and around you.  Do whatever you need to do to convince your mind that “things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” (Hebrews 11:3)

 

Connect to the energy physically: consciously practice the Presence – especially when you can’t see it at work. Get to work at being the presence of God on earth.

 

Connect to the energy emotionally: create spiritual “family” for yourself.  Connect to like-minded individuals.

 

Your connection to Spirit is the greatest connection you will ever make.

 

October 10th, 2010 at 4:31 PM - Practice

Facias ipse quod faciamus suades.  (Practice what you preach.)

Titus Maccius Plautus (200 BCE)

Do not let your deeds belie your words, lest when you speak in church someone may say to himself, “Why do you not practice what you preach?”

St. Jerome (400CE)

There is the world of ideas and the world of practice…neither is to be suppressed.

Matthew Arnold (1840)

One of the great difficulties in the new order of thought is that we are likely to indulge in too much theory and too little practice.

Ernest Holmes (1927)

 

Apparently great minds really do think alike.

 

There’s an old adage that “Practice makes perfect” and even a casual glance at many great lives does seem to prove the verity of that phrase.  Edison made hundreds of bulbs that didn’t work before he finally did en-lighten the world.  Lincoln lost several elections before he became President.  Sometimes you just gotta learn what you don’t know before you can prove what you do.  That takes practice.

 

In order to be, do or have anything we wish to be, do or have, we must practice being, doing or having that.

 

As much in warning as in instruction, Epictetus (c 100) wrote: Whatever you would make habitual, practice it; and if you would not make a thing habitual, do not practice it, but accustom yourself to something else.

 

Why settle for being something else when it is just as easy to practice what we wish to become?  If we wish to experience a different reality then we must practice a different way of being in the world.  We must come off of automatic and become aware of how our words and actions betray that which we would claim for ourselves – and change. That which we wish to create, demonstrate, or replicate in our lives must become our daily practice.

 

Let us really begin to practice that which we preach as gospel (good news) so that we have a good deal more good news to share.

 

We are all learning.  Keep practicing.

 

October 4th, 2010 at 2:00 PM - Circles

“Everything an Indian does is in a circle, and that is because the power of the world always works in circles and everything tries to be round.”      -Black Elk

 

“Spirit”, Ernest Holmes said, “is the center and the circumference of our lives”.  “Life,” he wrote, “is an upward evolving spiral”.  So, it occurs to me, that ideally we are each Spirit-centered circles, joyously spinning through the days of our lives in the realization of our Divine Truth.

 

In support of that idea, Emerson wrote, “The life of man is a self-evolving circle.” So, I wondered, why does it not always look like that?  I found what I consider to be a good answer in the words of William James:

 

“Most people live, whether physically, intellectually or morally, in a very restricted circle of their potential being.  They make use of a very small portion of their possible consciousness, and of their soul’s resources in general, much like a man who, out of his whole body organism, should get into a habit of using and moving only his little finger.”

 

Well now, isn’t that just an annoying concept?  Just when I was finally adjusting to the idea that I was probably only using 10% of my mental facilities, along comes James to point out that I may only be utilizing one little finger’s worth of my spiritual potential… a very restricted circle indeed.

 

If Holmes, and Emerson, and Black Elk, and James are right – and I hesitate to argue with that group of spiritual heavy-weights - I suspect it would serve us all to draw the circle bigger; to keep in mind that at the center of our being is the Power and Presence that created the Universe, a power which is probably quite capable of creating, or recreating our lives.  And to know too, that at the circumference of our lives is that same power – because God really is all that there is.  Looking in or looking out, all that there is, is God.

 

August 11th, 2010 at 8:55 PM - Free Steven Slater

"Free Steven Slater"  the email messages said. "Your friend(s) liked Free Steven Slater on Facebook and suggested you like it too."

Steven Slater, for those of you who don't watch any news programming at all, is the flight attendant who had an encounter with a rude passenger who (in spite of requests to remain seated while the plane taxied to the gate) insisted on going for her overhead baggage. During the encounter with the passenger, Steven also had an encounter with her baggage (in more ways than one). With no apology forthcoming and sizeable lump growing on his forehead, Steven finally had enough. He grabbed the plane's PA system, told the passenger off in simple 4 letter words, commandeered a couple of airline beers, deployed the planes emergency exit chute, and slid out of the plane and into the headlines.

Of course you can't do that. There are all sorts of laws that were broken. Steven was arrested and spent a couple of nights in jail. He's out right now on $2500 bail. But I don't think anyone is concerned that he's a flight risk: this flight attendant probably isn't going anywhere but to the tabloids.

It seems Steven is a folk hero now. Anybody and everybody who ever wanted to make a grand exit while walking off a job is cheering him on. There is even a Facebook page for contributions to the Steven Slater Legal  Defense Fund.

Now, I don't recommend that we all follow Steven's example. While his behavior was certainly preferable to going postal or doing bodily harm to the inconsiderate passenger, there are several scenarios that I can imagine that are more spiritually enlightened (and more legal) than the one that transpired. Nonetheless, I wonder how many of "us" are one lump on the head, or one caustic comment, or one more disappointment, or one more pushed button away from deploying the chute.

Here's my thought for today:

In the moment: (when you are reaching for the PA system to tell the world about your woes, or reaching out for the handle of the emergency exit) Count to One. There's One life. It's the life of Spirit. It is infinitely creative. And you are One with it. Take a breath. Remember what you really want. Act on that.

In the long run: (if you are in a job you can barely tolerate, or aren't appreciated, or not fairly rewarded)Take some time to decide what it is you really want. The take some time to find out what you are really worth, really deserving of. What I'm talking about here is your understanding of what you are as a spiritual being, an heir of the kingdom; a worthy, possibility laden, unlimited child of Creation itself. Find a teacher, a spiritual center, a really good book* that tells the Truth about you and study until you've got it.

When you are clear about all of that, start looking for a situation that befits you. You don't need to do anything rash, but you probably need to do something productive: get a newspaper and check the want ads, call friends with connections, take that course you need to qualify. Move and the world will move with you.

My way may not get you on the front page of the Enquirer but it will get you out of where you are and into a better place. What Steven Slater did was outrageous, outlandish, entertaining. And, bottom line, he said, "enough of this, I have to change something." On that point he was absolutely right.

Whatever you think of his style, Steven has had more than his 15 minutes of fame (and more atta boys than most people get in a lifetime). And I don't doubt that the passenger, wherever she is, still has her baggage.

You don't need to keep holding on to yours.

 

July 8th, 2010 at 8:36 PM - Can We Save the Planet?

Can We Save the Planet?

 

Good question, don't you think?

 

Is it too late?

 

Do we have the resources?

 

Do we have the discipline to change lifetimes of habit?

 

Are we willing to do what it takes?

 

Saving the planet: it's a lot like saving our own lives... and the questions are pretty much the same.

 

Just something to think about.

 

PS: For those who are interested, here's a great, thought provoking link:

Humans vs. The Environment: A Thought Experiment

 

June 16th, 2010 at 3:49 PM - Father's Day 2010

Father's Day 2010. Is this a day to celebrate? For some yes, for others perhaps not. If father was present and loving, if father provided, if father was "there for you," then Sunday may well be a day to remember and celebrate the first man in your life. If father was absent, absorbed, addicted, or otherwise distracted, then it is likely a day of remembrance and regret. Unless of course you have grown up.

We didn't all have Norman Rockwell fathers. Some of us had no father at all and many could only wish they had none. Most of us did assume however that everyone else had the perfect father, the perfect family, the perfect life.

That assumption did what assumptions so often do... lead to even more erroneous assumptions. The thinking is something like this, " If everyone else has the perfect father, the perfect family, the perfect life, and I don't, then there must  something wrong with me." Forget that father had his own problems, or was over worked, or didn't have his head on straight: children don't understand that.

All children really understand is that everybody else seems to be happy and they are not. They don't know how to fix the problem and that just leads to more angst. Angst turns to anger, anger turns in on itself and becomes resentment, resentment eats away at innocence, and too often the sad child becomes a sorry adult who still believes, as the child did, that there is "something wrong with me."

It's too bad. It doesn't have to be that way. There is another way to look at it, even as adult, that can not only change the way you feel about Father's Day, but can change your life.

I'm not going to give you metaphysical platitudes about everyone having the perfect father: the father whose abuse or absence, or ignorance made you stronger, or taught you to stand on your own, or "made you who you are today" - although all of that may be true. I'm not going to sermonize about everyone having the perfect family; the family that shaped your values, or lack of same, or the family that toughened you up for life - though that too may be true. And I'm not going to lecture about having had the perfect life; some lives have really sucked, so far. Nonetheless, whatever it has been, it has brought you to this moment, and in this moment it can all change, if you are willing.

What we didn't know as children, and many of us still do not understand as adults, is that we are part of something much larger than our biological families. Perhaps our father wasn't  the greatest, but there were others as we grew up, who stepped in and filled the roles that we thought our father should fill. There were teachers who taught us about life, and the value of learning. There were friends who taught us about love. And there was, and is, a Spirit in life that provided for us and brought us this far.

Two thousand years ago a young rabbi sought to teach the people of his time about the Spirit of Life. God, who up until that time had been addressed as a monarch (King of Kings), he called Father. It  was a giant leap in consciousness. The Spirit of Life he said, is within me - even as my human father's lineage is within me. Had he known about DNA I'm sure he would have used the analogy.

Here's what I know: we do all have, or have access to, the perfect father, the perfect family, the perfect life.

The perfect family: the family of humanity. The family that can support and nurture and inspire and motivate and walk with us on this journey of life; if we will let it. The scriptures say ask, seek, knock.

Ask for assistance, ask for support, ask for what a family can give. Seek out those who think as you do, who support you in being great, who believe in you. Knock and expect the doors to open, expect that there is a family that will welcome you in.

The perfect life awaits you. However, you may have some work to do. Given that life is the mirror of our beliefs and expectations, the life you have now is, in fact, perfect: a perfect reflection of what you have believed and expected up until now. Want it more perfect, start expecting more, start believing in something better.

That's the "grow up" part. Let go of what wasn't yesterday. It wasn't, or at least you didn't believe it was, which amounts to the same thing.  One of the perks of growing up is that we can see things from a more adult perspective. Dad was what he was, you don't have to be. The family was what it was, good or bad; take the good, let go of the bad. You were what you were, you can choose to continue to be that, or you can evolve into what you dream of being. The past has no real hold on you... if you let go of it.

And, the perfect father may not be the man whose biology brought you into this world. It doesn't have to be. The perfect father is the Spirit of Life, the Source, that brings forth everything. It creates, it supports, it provides. When we are willing to let go of our assumptions that one man was supposed to do all of that, and claim our divine parentage; when we are willing to let Spirit be our Source, then we will truly will inherit what we were meant to inherit: the kingdom.

And we will celebrate Father's Day as we have never before.

 

 

 

 

June 6th, 2010 at 4:45 PM - The Art of Giving

In 1990 John Denver sang:

What one man can do is dream

What one man can do is love

What one man can do is change the world

And make it work again

Here you see what one man can do



That was 1990. Today, with the enormity of global challenges: oil gushing in millions of gallons from the ocean floor, economic meltdown, global terrorism; and what seems like unprecedented need everywhere you turn, it's really hard to believe that one person can make a difference; that one person can "change the world and make it work again."

One trip to the mailbox, one hour of late night television, and it is clear that many deserving causes are in need of support. The pleas for financial aid to worthy endeavors are nearly overwhelming. Closer to home the need is equally great. Local homeless shelters, animal rescue sites, food banks, your spiritual home, all are worthy and in need of support.

You want to change the world and make it work again, but how in the world does one person respond to all of the need, not just financially, but mentally, emotionally and physically as well? What do you do? What can you do?

You cannot do it all. One person simply cannot do it all. The job is too big.

John Denver's song paid homage to R. Buckminster Fuller. The man was an author, an architect, an inventor, a visionary. He accomplished a great deal in his lifetime but will likely be best remembered for designing the geodesic dome and coining the phrase "Spaceship Earth."

He changed the world, but he didn't try to do it all. He worked within the framework of his own talents and abilities. And that is what we all must do.

When faced with a request for your time, treasure or talent, before you start feeling guilty about what you cannot do:

Stop, take a ask yourself, "Is this a real cause? Is it something I truly believe in? Is it something I want to be involved in?" Don't worry, if you don't believe it is a legitimate cause or at least one that you can believe in, release it. If it is legit others who are drawn to the work it is doing will support it.

If you do believe in the work it is doing, choose it. Decide that this is the one you want to support, then ask yourself, "What can I do?" Be honest with your answers. If you really want to do something, then do something. Everyone has something to give.

It doesn't have to be all about giving money. You can give "stuff." My local pet shelter is always in need of old towels, bleach, cans of pet food. You can recycle things that you aren't using and put them to work for a greater good.

Want to help the homeless but don't know who is legitimately in need, or where the money would really go if you gave it? Give goods or time to a shelter. Or go to McDonalds and buy a few $1 gift certificates - McDonalds has $1 meals these days. It isn't a huge investment and you'll know that the only thing it will buy is food.

If the economy has fallen hard upon you there is still much you can do. You are reading this, you have access to a computer and there are many online sites where you can click and support a good cause. Start here and see where it takes you: http://www.TheAnimalRescueSite.com (you will find links there to support World Literacy, Save the Rainforest, End World Hunger, the Breast Cancer site and Children's Health).

People power is always needed. You can volunteer time and talent when appropriate and you can pray for the causes you believe in; the people who can will write checks that will help, but nothing is more powerful than prayer. Who is praying for them?

Dream of a better world. Love in the best way you can. And pray... you might just change the world.

May 10th, 2010 at 3:41 PM - Preparing for Miracles

A miracle is coming, are you prepared?

Miracles are perfectly natural occurrences that we just didn't see coming. But if you don't open your eyes you might miss the whole show.

It isn't difficult to prepare yourself for a miracle; there are only three simple steps:

Get ready: Stop telling yourself it can't happen (or can't happen to you). Start expecting that miracles can happen to you. OK, so it didn't work out before, it couldn't; you didn't know then what you know now. You weren't the person then that you are now. Let go of your attachment to being a failure, or not having what your heart desires, and decide right now that is a new era of unprecedented good.

Get set: Create the perfect landing place for the miracle. Do what you know you need to do. (Yes, you do have a part in creating your miracle). Do what you've been putting off. Line up your ducks. Pick up the pieces that need to be picked up, mend the parts that need to be mended, and throw out the parts that are getting in the way of your desire.

Go for it!: Expect the miracle. Keep your eyes open. Miracles move quickly and it's up to you to pay attention to every open door, open window or casual comment. Start looking for subtle signs. Walk through doors that open, and don't worry about ones that seem to close. Sometimes what looks like a wrong door is just an opening into a hallway that can take you straight to Miracleville.

Trust the process. Miracles are waiting to happen in your life. You have to let them.

 

April 28th, 2010 at 2:42 PM - Passion

Many of you already know that I've entered my newest book, Relevant Spirituality: The App for Your Life, in the Next Top Spiritual Author contest.  With a week to go in Round 1 I'm in the top 150 vote getters (out of 1,500 contestants). The top 250 will go on to the next round. It's American Idol for those of us who don't sing but do like to write about matters spiritual.

The contest has turned out to be much more than I originally anticipated. Isn't life like that? What appeared to be a interesting undertaking in the beginning has evolved into a major life commitment. I love to write, no real hardship there. But writing is only the beginning. Because the first round is so focused on getting votes (gathering support for the book idea), I have been nudged, none too gently, into several new arena: learning about social media, creating a "traffic stream", and actually asking people to support me (and get their friends to do the same). The secret it seems, is going viral (which sounds bad but is actually good).

Given that everyday life and it's agendas doesn't stop just because I've added a new piece to the puzzle, I've been working much harder than I have worked in a long time. I'm getting up earlier, staying up later, and I'm having a ball! Why? Because I'm passionate about this thing called Relevant Spirituality, I want everyone to know how really available and immediate spiritual power is, and I see this as an amazing opportunity to get the word out.

The passion drives me, motivates me, inspires me. Passion does that. It fuels our creative engines. It provides a reason to get up on the right side of bed in the morning. It helps us see doors and windows where otherwise we might see walls.

Here's what I know: without passion your life is work, with passion your life's work is fulfilled.

What we need to know is that passion not only get's its own job done, it get all the work completed. I can't wait to finish the mundane chores of the day so that I can get to the labor of love that is waiting. It is rather like eating your vegetables before you can have dessert; although my passion is my first priority I know that there are things I "must do" to keep my world tidy and spinning in the right orbit. So, after taking time to connect with Spirit, I make a daily list of to-do's, making sure that my passion has a prominent place on it. I schedule my assignments to make sure that I don't get caught up in, or detoured by, the lesser details. I commit a block of time to my passion and I keep my commitment.

Realizing your passion is about discipline. The word discipline itself comes from disciple and to be a disciple is to be passionately committed to a cause, to dedicate your life to that which you believe in. What better cause than that which inspires and motivates you?

Live with passion. Follow your inner urgings. Do what Spirit calls you to do.

Oh yes, and please vote for Relevant Spirituality. Round One doesn't close until midnight May 3 and a lot could happen between now and then. Here's the link: www.NextTopAuthor.com/?aid=52

 

March 29th, 2010 at 5:06 PM - Passion Week

Around the world people are observing Easter Week. Those who practice traditional Christian religions are focused on the last week in the life of Jesus: from his triumphant entrance into Jerusalem , through the dark night of betrayal, the trial, his death, and finally resurrection. Those who are more inclined to think of themselves as spiritual rather than religious, are focused on the meaning of this season in terms of personal renewal and rebirth. And some are happy with spring cleaning and coloring Easter eggs with little concern about the pagan roots that the practices reflect.  It is an interesting time and, with a little awareness, there really is something for everybody in it.

This time of transition is about moving through the darkness of winter into the promise of spring. And, whatever your religious beliefs, the events of this Easter week emphasize, as does no other time of the year (liturgically or otherwise), the power of spiritually walking through times of crises - into the glory of new beginnings.

Looking at the story of last week in the life of Jesus is like watching a life moving toward its destiny at warp speed.

ü  Celebration: Palm Sunday. The jubilant entrance of a man whom many called The Messiah into Jerusalem - just as the prophets foretold.

ü  Connection: Passover Dinner - the observance, with loved ones,  of deeply held common beliefs

ü  Abandonment: The Garden of Gethsemane, when even those who were closest could not stand by and keep watch.

ü  Betrayal: The Judas kiss.

ü  Judgment: Cheated by the system, unfairly accused, rejected by popular vote.

ü  Humiliation: The long walk to Calvary, hanged with thieves.

ü  Death: "and he gave up the ghost"... but not before saying "for this I was born."

ü  It would all seem a tragedy, if not for the rest of the story, the last piece of the chronicle:

ü  Resurrection: Rebirth, renewal, redemption.

The circumstances are not unique to this story; scholars tell us that they mirror even older stories from other times and places. But the lessons remain the same. The lessons in the story are about spiritual courage: about believing in something greater than the circumstances, even in our moments of greatest fear and loneliness, in the face of betrayal, abandonment, humiliation and unfair judgment.

The lessons tell us that if we stay with what we know in our heart and soul to be true; if we are true to our spiritual passions - to what we believe in - and keep moving forward, however we can, we will not simply endure, we will overcome.

Take a stand this week for what you believe in; for your own divine calling; for your destiny. Resources beyond your imagining will be brought into play. Miracles will happen.

They call it Passion Week:  and so it is meant to be.

 

March 9th, 2010 at 1:39 PM - Your Questions Answered

Based on the replies to the email I sent out last week, the biggest questions, spiritual or otherwise, in most of our lives are: Why me? Why this? Why now? What's happening?

Although the specifics of the individual questions differ, the bottom line is pretty much the same: Why me? Why this? Why now? What's happening?

In the interest of doing some actual (and possibly immediate)good, I'm going to cut through the platitudes and get right to the point.  And besides, you asked:

Why me? Because at some level we all feel guilty about something. Something we did, or didn't do; something we are not doing that we believe makes us wrong or bad or inconsiderate. And, spiritually speaking, as long as we feel guilty about something (note here that we do not actually have to be guilty of anything, we just have to feel guilty)we leave an open invitation for the universe, or life, or someone, to punish us for our perceived misconduct.

Why this? Because guilt is a smart bomb that knows exactly where to go and what to do to create the greatest impact on our lives. It knows how to get our attention and so it sabotages the most important, critical, or weakest link in our chain of defense. If health is an issue, it creates disease. If finances are critical, it creates crises. If relationship is an issue, it creates discord or confusion or lack of understanding. What do you least need? Guilt will serve to up to you.

Why now? Because now is all there is. If not now, when? Is there a good time to feel bad? You can't expect guilt to be considerate or polite or to wait it's turn. That isn't it's nature. It is not going to wait for a more convenient time. The whole purpose of its existence is to make you feel as bad as possible at the least favorable moment - that would be now.

So, based on your questions, your concerns, as what really appears to be a desire to get past whatever is going on in your life and get on with the peace, love, joy and overall happiness that you really do deserve, I have decided to take action:

I've just declared a holiday (holy-day): Forgiven Day!

Forgiven Day is officially any day you choose. Pick one: Your birthday, the first day of spring, April Fool's Day, Tuesday. You choose. You can do it today or you can put it off for as long as you are willing to be unhappy. Forgiven Day is your own privately celebrated  holiday (holy-day) and the exact date is no one's business but your own. I would however suggest getting on with it.

Here's the justification for Forgiven Day:

Most of the world's great spiritual traditions tell us that we are forgiven for our transgressions by a Spirit that not only lets them go, but remembers them no more forever. We are likewise admonished to forgive seventy times seven the errors of others (who you will remember we are told to forgive "as we have been forgiven"). With all that forgiveness going on around us, who are we to not include ourselves in a circle that God has drawn us into?

Isn't it time we stopped looking skyward and murmuring Why me? Why this? Why now? and instead took responsibility for our own actions and misconceptions?

Here's are the Forgiven Day rules:

You don't need an outfit (though you may create, design, or wear one if you choose). Sack cloth and ashes are NOT required.

No special diet is necessary (the eating of crow or humble pie is not part of the process but is an acceptable practice if you insist).

The guest list is limited to One.

The agenda is short: Forgive yourself.

 

Further action: If there is something you know you need to clear up/clean-up/set up, or make right, do it. If there is someone you need to make things right with, handle it.

You know if there is something you need to do, so go do it.

If you still have doubts about all this, go to www.RelevantSpirituality.com > Spiritual Guidance> Relationships>Forgiveness

Otherwise, just lay down your guilt, pick up your power, and walk on.

 

Oh, yes, the final question: What's happening?

Simply, you are being given the opportunity to change course; to go in the direction of your highest dreams and deepest calling, to follow a spiritual course rather than to stay in an all-too-human rut.

The choice is yours.

Let me know how it goes with you. 

 

Forgiven Day: Because there is nothing between you and the highest expression of your humanity and your spirituality but an idea.

 

February 22nd, 2010 at 6:58 PM - We Are the Champions

As I write this the 2010 Winter Olympics are more than half over. Over the past week and a half many dreams have been realized; many dreams will yet be; and many more will have been postponed: pending the dreamer's willingness to get over an apparent loss, learn from the experience, and persevere.

Such is life.

It is thrilling to watch an Olympian realize his or her dream; to see a man or woman who has worked so very hard achieve this great goal, this shining moment. Excelling at this level requires courage and dedication. The personal stories of these athletes are often heroic.

This week the focus of much of the world is on the Olympians and their stories. This week our individual circle of life is widened by the lives of those we watch on our televisions. This week we grieve with the family of the athlete who was killed in a practice run and with the skater whose mother died unexpectedly on the day before she was to watch her daughter compete. We are saddened by the ice dancer who fell, the skier who didn't make the jump, the speed skater who stumbled, the veteran who didn't qualify for his event.

As the victors take the platform and receive their medals who could deny them that moment of glory? Yet, while we applaud their accomplishments, others who have worked as hard (perhaps harder), for as long (perhaps longer), whose stories may be even more courageous, stand in the wings and watch as the gold, silver and bronze are placed around the necks of their competitors.  What thoughts must be filling their heads at a moment such as this? Why them? Why not me? Where did I go wrong?

We've all been there: worked hard, gave it our all; only to stumble at the last moment, only to watch someone get past us to take the prize, to watch someone else get the glory. We've all had those thoughts: Why them? Why not me?

We watch, we sympathize, we empathize, because we know that they are us. They are dreamers who are living their dream. dream. They seem bigger than life for a moment, but they stumble, they fall, they are us. Ultimately they are individual aspirants who are playing their stories out on a very public stage. We may not have the attention of the whole world, but we certainly have attention in our own. We may have doubts about our ability to succeed, none-the-less we all dream, we all strive.  And, we all stumble, we all fall behind,  we all know what it is to not qualify, to come in fourth place; we all know what it is to feel that we have lost.

That is why I believe that the real heroes of these, and all life games, are not the multi-medalists (though I admire their talents), nor the come-from-behind winners (though I applaud their achievements) , nor even the "playing through the pain" wounded: my heroes are those who don't necessarily win in the eyes of the world, but who come back and try again - and sometimes again and again - not just because they love what they are doing, but because they understand that, even in apparent failure, they are growing, they are becoming greater.

The network reporters have commentated several times during the Olympics on competitors who were "seeking redemption." Their meaning was that an athlete had somehow failed to achieve the glory that was expected of them in a previous event and that they had returned to "prove themselves." The suggestion was that, by winning a medal in this Olympics they will have saved their reputation, or enhanced their standing in the eyes of the world.

I see it differently. I believe that simply by virtue of our willingness to keep learning, to return to a place of former defeat and compete again, regardless of the outcome, we become winners. It is not the medals that make us heroes. It is not the public acclaim that defines who we are - or who we would like to become - it is our own willingness to keep learning, to keep growing, to keep striving for the dream that is within us, regardless of apparent loss, regardless of apparent defeat.

The games of the Winter Olympiad will be over in a few days, but for the real winners, the dream, and the work, goes on.

Such is life.

 

January 28th, 2010 at 6:55 PM - 7 Steps to Create the Life of Your Dreams: Part 3

For the last two weeks I have been blogging and talking (Weekly Talk>Past Talks>7 steps) about the 7 Steps to Create the Life of Your Dreams. I promised that I would review each of the 7 Steps in more detail and this is the final installment. If you didn’t read the last two blogs, they are still on line below this one so you can follow the entire plan. I complete my promise with steps 3-7:

 

3. Create a support team. It is difficult to get great things done alone: Edison had Watson to call out to; Cecil B. DeMille had a cast (and crew) of thousands; JFK had his "fellow Americans"; Martin Luther King had an army of marchers. Whether the goal is public or personal, it takes a team. When you know what your dream is, and you have a solid plan, you need to create a  dream team to help you get it done. What talents do you need to attract? What moral support will keep you going? Who do you need on your side? Don't be afraid to ask for help, tangible or intangible.

Ministers, spiritual counselors, pray-ers, errand runners, longtime friends and perfect strangers, teachers, mentors, apprentices, writers, illustrators, graphics designers, wood choppers and water carriers may all have their part in your dream team. If God has angels running errands and taking care of parts of the business, why shouldn't you? Decide what/who you need on your side.  Know that once you dedicated to the accomplishment of your dream you will attract everything you need, and then send out a casting call. Create an "inner dream circle" and invite people you trust to support you and become part of the process.

4. Accept spiritual support. Prayer is a non-negotiable imperative for accessing and directing your spiritual power. Pray - not begging some outside Deity to "pretty please" give you what you want - but claiming the reality of the substance of your dream. If you haven't already watched the video on "How to Pray" take the time to do that so that you really are clear in your communication. (click on Spiritual Guidance>Faith>How to Pray).

Above all, know that the Universe really is on your side: it wants to say yes. In fact, all it ever says is yes. Be conscious of what you are saying to it. Allow The Unlimited to remove your perceived limitations. Pray yourself and ask others to pray with you - there is no such thing as too many people knowing the truth about your dream.

5. Commit to a test period. Look at your plan, what can you accomplish in 21 days? What can you accomplish in 42 days? Break your plan into bite-sized, doable, measurable increments. Set your heart on the final goal but set your sights on what can be done in the first 21 days to move the dream forward. Commit to the first 21 day action plan. Three weeks: not forever, you can do it. Three weeks: do not allow yourself to become discouraged or panicky. Three weeks, 21 days: promise yourself you won't measure your progress until the time is up (which even gives you some procrastination time if you are a last minute, under the wire, achiever.

At the end of 21 days take stock of where you are and how much you accomplished. Revise your plan if necessary, redesign your participation if necessary, revamp your pace if necessary. Then recommit to the next 21 days.

6. Exercise your plan daily. Every day do something, no matter how small, to move you forward and build your faith in the accomplishment of your dream. Make this exercise  a priority. One thing, minimum, every day. Remember you are only committed to 21 days at a time, so this need not be overwhelming. At the end of 21 days you will have done at least 21 things to make your dream come true. That's pretty impressive.

And don't let other people's agendas to cancel yours out. Remember, this is the realization of the Divine Plan within you - what could be more important? Big dreams take big commitments and big commitments take priority over everything. To put it more simply: Your dream trumps your neighbor's laundry crisis.

Life happens, necessity and crises occur; we don't live on the planet alone and, since that is true, and since we care about one another, we often set aside our own agendas to care for one another. There is nothing wrong with that - just don't let it become a major detour on the road to your dream.

However cluttered with the unexpected a day may become - before you call it a day take the time to do one thing for your dream. And, keep a log (your planner is a great place to do this) of your daily achievements. Don't make a list and cross things off - all that does is leave you with a list of things you haven't done yet. Make a list and highlight what has been done so that those things stand out and encourage you.

7. Choose your dream anew every day.  Every day consciously choose to be the greatest supporter and the hero, or heroine, of your dreams. Be your own knight in shining armor - the guardian angel of your own future. If you put the dream on a back-burner that's where it will stay. Keep it fresh. In For the Inward Journey the mystic philosopher, Howard Thurman said it far better than I ever could:

Keep fresh before me the moments of my high resolve.

Despite the dullness and barrenness of the days that pass, if I search with due diligence, I can always find a deposit left by some former radiance. But I had forgotten. At the time it was full-orbed, glorious, and resplendent. I was sure that I would never forget. In the moment of its fullness, I was sure that it would illumine my path for all the rest of my journey. I had forgotten how easy it is to forget.

There was no intent to betray what seemed so sure at the time. My response was whole, clean, authentic. But little by little, there crept into my life the dust and grit of the journey. Details, lower-level demands, all kinds of cross currents -- nothing momentous, nothing overwhelming, nothing flagrant -- just wear and tear. If there had been some direct challenge --a dear-cut issue -- I would have fought it to the end, and beyond.

In the quietness of this place, surrounded by the all-pervading Presence of God, my heart whispers: Keep fresh before me the moments of my High Resolve, that in fair weather or in foul, in good times or in tempests, in the days when the darkness and the foe are nameless or familiar, I may not forget that to which my life is committed.

Keep fresh before me the moments of my high resolve

 

 

January 22nd, 2010 at 1:35 PM - 7 Steps to Create Your Dream: Part 2

Last week I both blogged and talked about (Weekly Talk>) 7 Steps to Create the Life of Your Dreams. Since then I’ve promised several people that I would review each of the 7 Steps in more detail. If you didn’t read last week’s blog, it is still available (just look below)and you can see the whole plan. This week I’d like us to focus on the first two steps.

 

1. Design a Workable Plan. Too often the biggest obstacle to creating the life of your dreams is that the dreamer enjoys the dream so much that he/she doesn’t want to wake up. While it is great to dream, and dreaming is certainly where all great things begin,  nothing is really going to change in the real world until the dreamer arises from the dream state and tackles Reality head on.

Here’s the spiritual truth: Your dream, if it is genuine (not just an advanced ego trip or a wanna-be something because it looks like it would be more fun than what you are doing now) comes from the highest place within you. Your desire to change the world (your individual or our collective world) is the spirit within you nudging/urging you toward the realization of your unique expression of the Infinite.

You may think you are not smart enough, clever enough, gifted enough or good enough. Get over yourself. Spirit has chosen you to be the greatest expression of Spirit-as-You. You already have, or will attract, all you need to do that perfectly. No one is better equipped for the job. No one else can gather the material resources necessary to be the greatest You. No one else will garner the spiritual support that will be yours the moment you commit to using your full spiritual potential.

So, get it into your heart and head that your dream is yours for a reason bigger than you are, and then sit down and figure out what you need to be/do/attract in order to accomplish that dream. Be as detailed as you can. Pretend you are an architect drawing the blueprint for a dream house. What foundation material do you need? If you need to learn more, find out what, where, and how that happens and write it down. OK, so it’s going to take time to get it done… what else do you have to do that is more important than becoming what you were born to be?

How long is it going to take? Get out a calendar or a planner and start marking target dates and milestones. Create a clear, measurable, exciting plan that will, by its nature, keep you enthusiastic (which means filled with spirit) and moving forward.

Everything you can dream really is do-able, and in this case, the doer is you. Be reasonable. If you want to be a beauty queen and  you are over the age limit for Miss Universe, look at the Mrs. Pageants, or start your own. If you want to sing at the Met, can you sing? Do you need to take singing lessons? Do you need to get real about your expectations? You are equipped to be the greatest YOU, if you are trying to be someone else, you probably are not going to succeed. Miracles happen, but they are more accessible to those who approach life honesty and openly.

 

2. When your plan is clear, sum it up in one simple, present-tense sentence: as though it is already a done deal. Call it an affirmation, or a mantra, or a motivating phrase; everyone needs a mental reminder to stay on course for the dream.

Make a list of what the final product “looks like.” Are you thinner, smarter, richer, more enlightened? Are you in a new house/job/relationship? Decide what the dream looks like as an accomplished fact and  write that down. Put your dream into the present tense (I am … I have … I do… it is… NOW!) and use  fun, exciting, descriptive, wonderful words that make you excited just to say them. No negative statements: just powerful, present-tense, personal, exciting, done deal words that fire your mind and stir your spirit.

If you want to, set your words to music. Pick a familiar, easy tune that is memorable and that you can hum. Every time you hear the melody your mind will fill in the words… it’s easy, it’s fun, it works! Repeat the sentence, hum the tune, sing the song out loud. After a while you mind will absolutely believe that what you are saying/singing is a reality… and it is done unto you as you believe.

Next week: the rest of the list. This should keep you busy for now. Contact me if you have any questions or thoughts to share.

To the dream!

Marlene

 

 

January 13th, 2010 at 3:54 PM - 7 Steps to Create Your Dream

(The talk posted on Sunday January 17 on www.RelevantSpirituality.com (Weekly Talk Tab>Current Talk) supports the ideas in today's blog.)

This time of year television and the internet are full of handy-dandy "tools" for accomplishing your New Year's Resolutions. Whether you want to lose weight, stop smoking, exercise, finish that novel, or find a new job; there is a long-lost secret, a proven plan, a magic talisman, or a sure-fire cure that will get 'er done! Trouble is, most of them, although they may have a little information, or a "free trial" up front, ultimately have a target in mind - and the target is your credit card. Once you've given them 16 numbers and an expiration date, you're pretty much on your own.

Here's a different plan. No up-front costs; in fact no cost at all except the time and energy you are willing to invest in your own life. And you don't have to go it alone. With this plan you create support in the physical world as well as the spiritual realm. With God and a few friends on your side, what could you accomplish?

So here's the plan: 7 Steps to Create a New Life; or a new body, or a new relationship, or a new job. You decide what you want, and know that the only thing that can stop you is not following the steps.

1. Design A Workable Plan: Sit down and write out what you want to accomplish. Be very specific about your goals. If you want to lose weight, how much? by what date? If you want a new job, doing what? what salary do you require? If you want or need to get an education to further your career, what is your game plan? Who do you need to contact? How long is it going to take? Lay out all of the details so that you can see what needs to be done and can be realistic about doing it. If you need more information, this would be the time to get it.

2. When your plan is clear, sum it up in one short , present-tense sentence, as though it is already a done deal. "I am ten pounds thinner." "I am well paid in my new job." "I am a healthy, happy, former-smoker." Consider this your new mantra. Make the phrase as catchy as you'd like, it is intended to be repeated freely and frequently and should not only remind you of your intention, but motivate you to accomplish it.

3. Create a support team. Who do you need on your side? Your family? Your local gym? An educational counselor? Your health practitioner? It is challenging enough doing what you need to do to change your life, get other people on board. Tell your family what you are doing - and tell them you are going to do it, with or without their support, but you'd prefer to have them pulling for you. Enlist a friend or two who are willing to be part of your pep squad.

4. Accept spiritual support. The Universe really is on your side: allow it to help you create your heaven-on-earth. Pray, ask for prayer support, know that, in addition to the visible, you have invisible means of support as well. Stop arguing with Life and simply accept the good it has to offer.

5. Commit to a test period. Set a specific time frame for Stage 1. Three weeks, 21 days is a good start. Promise yourself you will not go off-plan, nor will you expect unreasonable results during that time. What can you reasonably accomplish in 21 days? Commit to that goal and measure your progress at that time. Reassess your plan in 21 days, adjust if necessary, then commit for the next 21 days. Repeat until your dream is a reality.

6. Exercise your plan daily. Just like exercising your body, exercising your plan (which is the key to accomplishing your dreams) must become a daily practice. Do not let a day go by without doing at least one thing that will bring you closer to the accomplishment of your dream.

7. Choose your dream anew every day.  Make the accomplishment of your new reality a top priority. Every morning look in the mirror and recommit to the dream of that person looking back at you. Consciously choose to be the greatest supporter and the hero, or heroine, of your dreams. A new life is not created by wishing it were so, but by the choices you make moment to moment, one conscious day at a time.

Over the next couple of weeks I'll go into more detail about each of the steps and if you have questions, please feel free to contact me. But don't wait for all of the answers, get started, the beauty of a plan that includes the spiritual is this: in the perfect time, all will be revealed.