Sunday, October 24, 2010

Parasite or Pearl?

When we go through hardships in life, it is easy to feel broken or battered. Sometimes it is difficult to see any possible benefit from the hardship, especially when struggles seem to follow one after the other. But our difficulties help us create pearls from our lives - pearls of both wisdom and beauty.

Consider how a pearl is formed in an oyster or mollusk. It is from a parasite that presents itself within the oyster - an irritant that the oyster must protect itself from. By protecting itself from the parasite or irritant, by forming a barrier around it, the pearl is comes from within the oyster, and from what was previously just a parasite.

If we apply this to our lives, we can more easily understand and appreciate our own hardships. We are the oyster. We are given irritants in order to bring out our gifts of beauty to the world. Our hardships allow us to create magnificent works of art from our lives. Without the parasite, the oyster would still leave a lovely, even if more ordinary, shell behind; but with the irritant, it produces a rare and wonderful jewel for the world. Our irritants help us produce pearls that enhance the beauty of the world.

One thing that stands out to me, beyond the usual pearl analogy, is that the oyster must protect itself from the parasite. It cannot just live with it as is and produce a pearl, but must form a barrier to protect itself from the harm that might be done by the irritant. In forming that protective barrier of calcium carbonate, the oyster produces the beautiful pearl. If it had not protected itself, it would become diseased and die.

We sometimes feel guilty for shutting out the parasites or irritants that surround us, those situations or persons that attach to us and hold us back, causing us dis-ease. But each such obstacle allows us to produce a work of art if we protect ourselves from it, and essentially shut it out from harming us. We should not feel guilt for creating barriers of protection in our lives. Our purpose is to create beauty through love and through finding our gifts and using them. If irritants attach themselves, it is also our responsibility to shield ourselves from their harm. When another has introduced friction or situations that can hurt us, we must protect in love, not attack. Like the oyster, if we simply isolate the parasite in such a way that it can no longer harm us, we are forming pearls in our lives, we are using the abilities and gifts that God gave us in a way that brings beauty. We are not only helping our own situation, but we are turning a parasite, an irritant, into a work of art. We help ourselves, and we transform another to a state of beauty.

Find ways to peacefully and lovingly address the irritants in your life, things that you might only have seen as parasites or difficulties that you were burdened with. Consider that each is an opportunity to build a pearl, if you will only see it as such and quietly, peacefully shield yourself from its harm. Create the pearl through embracing your hardships, through seeing them as gifts, as foundation for your unique work of art that will contribute breathtaking beauty in the world. By seeing in this way, you can release yourself from being a victim and understand that you have everything you need within you. You can be grateful for your hardships, realizing that they are gifts - and that realization is the greatest gift of all.

May love and light shine upon you today. Namaste.

Monday, October 18, 2010

God's Will Be Done

I was thinking about the phrase, "God's will be done" and what it really means. It is one of those phrases that has been pounded into our heads through repetition, but that we may seldom really think through in any way other than on the surface. I truly believe that God's will is for us to have joy, and that we are fully connected to God only when we are in that energy of bliss. But when we are confused or not committed to that, or sending out mixed messages about what we want (or thinking that we don't deserve blessings), God still tries to get us to joy. His vision or perspective is much greater than ours - so the path may be different from what we see. When the path seems foreign or unlike what we envisioned, we think it is bad, that things are going wrong - or that we are being punished - but it is really just God's direct route to get us there.

If we remain in joy no matter what is happening around us - if we find that place of peace within our souls knowing that God is always with us and is trying to send us deeper happiness and love - then we can cruise through the difficulties much more effectively. We don't need to ask "why me?" because, on a deeper level, we know that we are safely on the route to that joy that is Heaven within our souls, that place we have become so detached from in this world. God's route is the most direct and quickest path. Along the way, we may have upheavals, but these are merely signs of things that we need to address, or perhaps change in our lives, letting go of baggage or things that are holding us back from that heavenly peace.

If you begin to look at each hardship as a sign, or something that you need to learn or to let go of, then the path becomes so much more clear. These negatives will pop up to give you a chance to release them, or to change your thoughts about them, each one as a gift to allow you to progress in your consciousness, to allow you to more quickly be what you came here to be, do what you came to do -- to allow you to find your joy to fuel it. When the "problems" get more absurd, or seem as though you keep having the same sort of issues pop up over and over, then it is God's message to you even more loudly and clearly.

For example, it may seem to you that others take advantage of you regularly...but what you should ask yourself is why you keep getting in that position, then learn to say no once in a while. It is not about them, it is about you. You may also feel intensely negative vibes when around certain people that seem to get stronger and stronger. Consider that you may be progressing to higher vibrations, making their negativity more noticeable and less tolerable to you. Instead of getting angry at them or expecting them to change, remove yourself from its vicinity, even if only from the standpoint of emotional attachment. Begin to release yourself from these old destructive patterns, and you will feel your spirit rise.

Remember that each piece of this puzzle is God speaking to you...the things that frustrate you may be God showing you where you need to shift your own thoughts or attention. When you step out of the victim position and feel empowered by setbacks, knowing that they are guideposts for your change and your awakening, your world will change. From that, you will also change what you are putting into the world and will begin to make a more positive contribution from your new energy of joy.

God's will be done!...Be joyous! BE LOVE! THAT is God's will, and the will that you should have for yourself in order to align with God and experience the miracles that he offers. Go out and have a joy filled day, listening to God's clues for the direction toward your bliss.

Peace on earth begins with the joy and peace in your heart.

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Beauty is in the Doing

I have been absent on this blog for the last couple of months, but I have not been dormant. I have been completing something that was important for me to complete. I have finished writing my first book, Setting God Free.

Sometimes the importance of doing something is simply to have done it. It doesn't matter the accolades or the outward rewards, what matters is that you went beyond the place where you might have given up, that you stayed committed to something you believed in, even when the odds were against you or the cost was high. I feel that way now. This past week I completed the book that I have been writing, off and on, for over two years. The process has been hampered by all kinds of obstacles that made it seem I might never get it finished. Many times I wondered why I was still at it, why I was putting so much on the line. My finances were thin, my support system slim. But then I realized that the obstacles were all part of the book itself, part of my growth, part of learning things that created spiritual expansion.

We are always given the lessons that we most need to learn from in order to complete our purpose more effectively. I think we have tests, but not in the sense of passing them or failing them as we have come to think of tests -- with that negative feeling if we fail them -- rather, that we have opportunities to gauge where we are in our journey or readiness. These obstacles, if we look at them with an open mind, are really gifts to help us know where we are on our path or purpose, to help us understand where our faith is.

It would be hard to write a book about faith and letting go if one could not continually demonstrate greater faith and a greater willingness to let go on every step of the way. My journey has been such. I had powerful and awe inspiring spiritual experiences that began a few years ago, and from the first moment, I knew that I would write about them - knew that doing so was part of my calling. But also from the first moment, I had fears...Fears of challenging religious thinking, fears of backlash, fears of being different. I also faced fears of what it would mean to my livelihood if I continued on that path. All of those fears have been fed and challenged greatly over the last few years - to the point that I know my conviction, no matter how it may have wavered in moments, is deeper than ever.

My book will be available for distribution in about two months. My doubts have settled, my mind instead fixed on the beauty of the journey. I DID IT! I finished this task, this important hurdle along my journey - I made that step even through doubts, even through obstacles, even through moments of uncertainty or fear. It feels good!

When we are living out our true purpose, we feel good. It doesn't matter if the world is falling apart around us, we still feel good. I have experienced this along the way. When I would retreat from focusing on my purpose, or this particular aspect of it, I was miserable, fearful, waiting for the next shoe to drop. When I stayed committed to my purpose, I was joyful even amid the chaos. It has been an important lesson, a valuable test that has left me more confident on moving forward, excited about what I might bring to the world from here on out. My book is about Setting God Free to be all that He can be in our lives, rather than living with a limited version of God; but writing the book set ME free, released my own ideas of limitations.

Think about the things that make you feel good - the things that give you joy. They will help you figure out what may be a better path for you in living who you really are or finding what you are really meant to do in this life -- because we all have a contribution to make, and one that will help make the world a better place. It does not have to be grand on a worldly scale because sometimes the smallest gestures tip the balance in the right direction to cause great impact, like a domino effect. Be part of it. Find something that makes you joyous - no matter how small - and do it. That energy of joy will lead you to another thing, and another. Soon, you will begin to see what your calling is...You will find your true and bright soul, you will reunite with God and your own perfection and beauty.

That will bring Heaven on Earth. You may not think it is possible in your current surroundings, but try it, sincerely, and you will see how very possible it is. You will create Heaven in your life, and bring Heaven to others. Collectively we will shift the world.