Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Rose, By Any Other Name

William Shakespeare’s character Juliet made the point so aptly…
...that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet

A rose would still be the sweet and beautiful flower that it is no matter what name was assigned to it, or what we call it. If we applied this same thought to the concept of God, we could eliminate many of the differences in the world. All too often we look at religious ideas only as they relate to our own rituals or specific belief system, names, and stories. We sometimes forget that our widely chosen book, the Bible, tells us, “God is Love”. And God, The Almighty, The Creator, under whatever name is assigned or what specific rituals are attached, is still wherever there is love. Likewise, anything that is in the energy and emotion of pure love must be the same as that entity or being that we choose to call God…Our sweet rose (God) will remain just as sweet if it is called by any other name. What matters is what it IS (love), not what it is called.

We should understand that God exists in all things that are born of the essence of love, even if it this love is practiced under the names of Allah, Buddha, Krishna, Universal Life Force, Reiki, or any other label that might be comfortable and true to others but unfamiliar to us. Even if it has no name at all, but is simply the energy of pure love, then God is there. I believe that healing comes from that pure love energy – what I like to call “God-energy” (but can respect under any other name). When we are in the presence or vibration of pure love, our healing will occur…we will have our miracles. It is for this reason that Jesus was such a powerful healer...He could love all beings, without judgment. He possessed the knowledge that we are capable of creating our own miracles, and gave the directive to, “Ask, and it shall be given you". That statement leaves little wiggle room and is very emphatic about what it says: that we should ask and know that it will be given…to KNOW that…to EXPECT it….to consider nothing less. It is our tendency toward judgment that prevents our healing, not just the judgment of others (although that is damaging), but also the judgment we put upon ourselves internally …that we are never quite worthy of God’s love, we are never quite good enough, that we probably don’t deserve what we have, that there is probably some punishment awaiting us for not measuring up. In our search for God, we often look for our flaws rather than our goodness, which is opposite of what He does, and therefore only leads us away from feeling that unconditional love that is ready and waiting for us. In seeing our shortcomings, we cannot begin to imagine that God would bestow upon us any gifts of healing…any ability to create miracles for ourselves or those around us…so we rarely ask and expect it. We entirely forget to ASK, so that it can be given to us, but instead wait to see what comes our way.

Our path to true healing (of body and soul) begins and ends with love… casting out judgment and loving ourselves, loving one another, reaching out to another in need without expectations or demands in return. It is not an easy thing to do because our minds have been trained to measure ourselves and each other, but it is our true path to God. We cannot reach God through reciting scripture, or simply following rigid rules…if God is love, we can only reach Him through love…pure love deep in our hearts, unencumbered by judgment and fear. Open your heart to unconditional love and you will open your life to God…to miracles…to your greatest self. Allow yourself to love the stranger, regardless of perceived flaws, and to love yourself, in spite of your assumed mistakes or inadequacies. Focus simply on the sweet smell of the rose, rather than what it is called or the details of how it got here, and you will find your joy.

Monday, July 20, 2009

The 2012 Debate

A friend and fellow "spiritual seeker" emailed me last night to ask about my take on the 2012 debate...Will it be a time of spiritual awakening on a large scale?...Will it be Dooms Day? For those who are not familiar with this subject, 2012 marks the end of the Mayan calendar and ancient predictions for this powerful time and what it would bring. Some have come to think of as the potential apocalypse, giving ample opportunity for speculation. This topic is getting increasing attention, because many people feel very strongly about it on both sides, while others attribute it to being merely another Y2K "scam". I will say that, like Y2K, the outcome will be a result of our attention to it. The preparation leading to and attention shown to Y2K meant that a situtation that could have created chaos ran smoothly instead. Many chose to attach to the fear element of Y2K, rather than just preparing for it in such a way that it could go as smoothly as possible. In that fear, many moments of their lives were lost because they chose to focus their energy on how bad it was going to be. It is a testament to how we, as a society, choose to cling to the negative rather than the positive. A quick surf through the television lineup or our news programs makes that very clear.

I believe that the 2012 experience will be determined by how we look at it and what we do to prepare for it. But unlike Y2K, which was an incident of preventing a breakdown that would bring on disaster, 2012 may be an opportunity to create a breakthrough that would bring on a new world and new paradigm. Certainly, it is worth exploring and considering that possibility, or contributing to it, each in our own way.

Below is my email response to my friend to summarize how I feel about 2012. I get this partly from reading about 2012 theories, but mostly from feelings that I have deep inside about it. From my experiences, when we make attempts to get deeply connected, we can feel information in a sense of "knowing" that goes beyond just thinking or intellectual debate. These are simply my thoughts and feelings...you may have your own, or you may find that these thoughts resonate with you as you go into your deeper, knowing state. Here is my response:

2012…I definitely have thoughts and feelings about it and believe that it is indeed a turning point and shift. I have read some about it, but most of my feelings are more from internal things and vibes than anything else. I think that the things that are happening now, with so many people feeling an awakening or a calling, have to do with this energy that is increasing – leading up to that time. I think that we can make it happen in a fantastic way or we can prevent it from happening (“we” meaning the collective consciousness). I think that is why each person that we can touch in such a way as to “get them on board” so to speak, to encourage to open their mind, the more likely we are as a society to make wondrous things happen...to usher in a New World...A New Eden. I think you probably know what I mean…you meet someone and have the urge to share certain things with them…like Reiki, or angel talk, or new ways of looking at God… yet with other people, you don’t have such an urge. I think that once we get ourselves more “in tune” to the new energy patterns, the better we can identify others who may be on the verge of some kind of awakening or ready to connect. I believe many of us are here for that purpose and know it deep down inside….like we came here for this time and this transition and have to help each other awaken to remember that.

I actually believe the concept of 2012 is very much like the concept from the prophecy in the book of Revelation…”one will rise up from the field, and one will be left standing” (to paraphrase a little). Our human brains and religious training tend to make us try to translate that literally, thinking that God will come around and “snatch” up the good people to heaven, and then just leave the bad people behind. But I think it is more of a symbolic rising up…rising to another energetic dimension where the perception shifts to a more peaceful place – and place more in tune with God (heaven on earth). It is "ascension" to a better place within ourselves, and one that will change our lives.

I also think 2012 will feel like “Dooms Day” to many who are afraid of a shift in the old paradigms, or who resist it entirely. They will cling to the old ways afraid of the new, and may feel frantic about the loss of control or power in those paradigms. I even think that things like the economic troubles we are having are part of this shift…an opportunity for us to become less dependent on “stuff” to make us happy, so that we can get back to ourselves…back to our spirit...more truly back to God and our Oneness with Him, but in a new and more meaningful way than we have ever known. Those who embrace the challenge and just get real again and back in touch with themselves will rise above the economic troubles, those who stay fearful or bitter will get stuck. Likewise, those who find peace within themselves will contribute to peace in the world, but those who cannot find peace within themselves will feel the need to stir up and keep angst and trouble going. Their inner turmoil will contribute to outer/worldly turmoil, while those with inner peace will contribute to outer/worldly peace. It is simply a matter of which collective energy we, as individuals, choose to contribute to. If we can reach that magic "critical mass" number, whatever that may be, where the positve and loving energy is greater than the negative and judging energy, then we will arrive at that new place. 2012 and these years leading up to it may present a unique opportunity within elements of the universe which could make the task easier (going with the flow of the universe rather than against it...riding that powerful tide).

I see 2012 as a real opportunity for the world to change – but it is not just going to happen because it is that “time”…the opportunity will happen…the universe will be ready (astrologically, etc)…but we, as a collective consciousness, will have to usher in the new paradigms and the shifts through our own individual shifts.

That’s just my 2 cents worth!

Each of you reading this may have your own ideas about 2012...that it will be a mass awakening...that it will be Dooms Day...or that is is much ado about nothing. But if there is indeed an opportunity for it to be a mass awakening or Dooms Day, which would you prefer, and which would you want be part of? Whether 2012 exists or not, we each have a daily choice of being part of making something good through pure, unconditional love that is not based on judgment or control, or making something not-so-good through our fear-based thinking that generates a need to control and condemn.

Which do you choose? Which have you chosen in your actions thus far today? Which will you choose in your actions for the rest of today...for tomorrow...for the future? Will you simply wait for the world to change or will you be part of that positive change? The choice, as always, is yours.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Be Still and Know...

Psalm 46:10, Be still and know that I am God, is a very common verse in the Bible, known by most who have had any connection to religion. In our culture we are not still for very long, in fact, we often refer to those who are not not constantly in action or not constantly working toward a goal or outcome as slack or lazy, applying a derogatory connotation. We do not encourage quietness, stillness, or emptiness, nor do we understand that these things may be our way to know God more fully...just "being still" in order to connect with God in a way that is full of knowingness - beyond any need for proof or logic. This knowingness is where our faith truly begins, because it is without need for proof or evidence.

The Biblical phrase, "be still" is from the Hebrew root rahpah, with meanings such as, be slack, stay, be still, be slothful, fail, forsake, leave, let alone. By applying these possible variations on the translation, the meaning expands greatly. It is as if the Bible, in its earlier translation that was closer to the real language of its origin, is telling us to let up, to forsake our patterns and methods for seeking God or thinking about God, and just "know" that God is there. In a deeper sense, I like to also consider that these words may have had the meaning of telling us to "let go" of our limiting thoughts by stilling our minds away from the process of thinking, at which place we can know and feel that "I AM God"..."I" meaning ourselves...understanding that we have God in us at all times and can therefore never be separated from Him. The perceived separation from God, as in "I am not good enough, I am not worthy enough" is what has created our problems. Simply remembering our Oneness is all that we need to return to the Divine.

If we can overcome the wordly ways of needing to constantly be doing something or accomplishing something to validate ourselves - and learn to just "be still" - be slack, do nothing - for significant periods of time, we can attain a significant connection to God and to our holiness. It is that simple. Find quiet time where you allow yourself to do nothing - to take a nap even when the laundry needs to be done, the kitchen cleaned, the beds made, or the lawn mowed. But instead of ignoring these things to go shopping, watch TV, or do something else, just do nothing. Let the worldly "to do list" disappear and just "be slack... slothful...fail." In that quiet and pure space of non-guilt, feel God and feel the power of knowing that you are one with God. It is likely that you will feel a physical shift in energy and a sense of peace within you. If you do not feel this right away, do not give, up...simply continue and try to let go even more. In time, if you are sincere in your efforts, you will begin to "know" even if in only tiny bits. A simple flash of knowing God in this very personal a direct way can be all you need to lead you on your way to a more fulfilling connection. Any of us, in spite of all of our excuses, can surely find small bits of time to be still and ask for God to truly come into our presence. The benefits are simply too great to ignore.

Be still...and know.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Declaring Independence

Today is Independence Day here in the United States, which marks a remarkable moment when our forefathers stepped up to seek something more...to want a greater freedom to pursue their personal passions and happiness. It was remarkable because their foe was a much mightier and formidable opponent, yet these brave souls had the courage to want more and believe in something greater. In spite of conventional wisdom at the time, and although 80% of colonists were against this declaration and the impending fight, those few brave souls believed that they could win independence.

We are living in a time where much information is available to allow us avenues to declare our own personal independence...freedom from limiting thoughts that have been programmed into us by non-believers who cannot dare to believe in something greater, a power within us which can change our lives, heal us, and create miracles before us. Science and faith are converging in such a way that if we examine them, there is little doubt that there is a greater power accessible to us, within our grasp and control, which will allow us to create our greater destiny in ways we may never have imangined.

With this new wave of energy and faith that asks us to be more, there will be many naysayers, just as there were so many years ago when Independence was declared by the colonists...but the faithful prevailed, and greater things came of it. In 1776, the Declaration of Independence necessitated that a war be fought by those faithful, but our independence from limitation in this day can be won through peace, through love and acceptance shown to each other, through minds willing to lay down previous thought patterns and open to the possibility of more...more miracles in abundance.

You can take your own steps to join in the revolution of thought...by reading more, trying new things, opening your mind to new ideas, telling God and your angels that you are ready for more, ready to move into your real purpose in this life. If you ask sincerely, you will be shown opportunities for growth and new thoughts...open your mind and you will receive them.

Let this July 4 mark your Day of Freedom, the day that you declare your own will to move forward and be more.

Happy 4th to all!