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Author: Subject: Daily OM

Zen Peach





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  posted on 7/4/2011 at 12:44 PM
July 4, 2011

Conditioned Response
Reactions to Life Events

Our past experiences can and do influence our emotional reactions and responses to present events.

Our experiences color everything. The events of the past can have a profound effect on how we see our lives now and what we choose to believe about our world. Our past experiences can also influence our emotional reactions and responses to present events. Each of us reacts to stimulus based on what we have learned in life. There is no right or wrong to it; it is simply the result of past experience. Later, when our strong feelings have passed, we may be surprised at our reactions. Yet when we face a similar situation, again our reactions may be the same. When we understand those experiences, we can come that much closer to understanding our reactions and consciously change them.

Between stimulus and reaction exists a fleeting moment of thought. Often, that thought is based on something that has happened to you in the past. When presented with a similar situation later on, your natural impulse is to unconsciously regard it in a similar light. For example, if you survived a traumatic automobile accident as a youngster, the first thing you might feel upon witnessing even a minor collision between vehicles may be intense panic. If you harbor unpleasant associations with death from a past experience, you may find yourself unable to think about death as a gentle release or the next step toward a new kind of existence. You can, however, minimize the intensity of your reactions by identifying the momentary thought that inspires your reaction. Then, next time, replace that thought with a more positive one.

Modifying your reaction by modifying your thoughts is difficult, but it can help you to see and experience formerly unpleasant situations in a whole new light. It allows you to stop reacting unconsciously. Learning the reason of your reactions may also help you put aside a negative reaction long enough to respond in more positive and empowered ways. Your reactions and responses then become about what’s happening in the present moment rather than about the past. As time passes, your negative thoughts may lose strength, leaving only your positive thoughts to inform your healthy reactions.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!


 
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Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/4/2011 at 01:45 PM
Ah the Daily OM

 

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If we practice and eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, soon the whole world will be blind and toothless. -Mahatma Gandhi.

 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/5/2011 at 11:27 PM
A rather strange one today but I'll post them as I get them.

July 5, 2011

Panchakarma
Five Actions

Cleansing and eliminating toxins from our bodies can help slow the aging process and allows for clearer thoughts.

“Panchakarma,” a sanskrit word meaning “five actions,” describes a series of gentle, natural therapies that boost the body’s ability to detoxify and rejuvenate. As an essential part of Ayurveda, India’s ancient holistic system of medicine, it is used to maintain the body’s balance to prevent illness or as the first step in holistic treatment. Panchakarma’s incredible purification improves healing throughout the body, mind, and spirit, clearing the way for the body’s healing intelligence to flow freely.

Today, an oil massage, steam baths, and a special diet prepare your body for several days of relaxing, healing therapies at a spa-like medical clinic. A precise sequence of soothing treatments is then applied in such a way that brainwaves are stimulated and synchronized, creating deep relaxation and an expanded state of consciousness. At the same time, herbal therapies help flush toxins from the body’s systems and tissues while massage soothes the body and balances its energy. Profoundly rejuvenating, Panchakarma can increase energy and mental clarity. It has even been known to slow the aging process and heal diseases previously thought to be incurable according to Western medicine.

Depending on the needs of the particular individual, a series of five basic therapies are used: Vaman purges toxins from the sinuses, lungs, and stomach; Virechan flushes toxins from the small intestine; Vasti removes toxins from the colon; Nasyam is herbal therapy applied through the nose for head and sinus conditions. The fifth therapy can be one of three methods: Rakta Moksham removes the excess toxins in the bloodstream, while Shiro Dhara uses a hot-oil head massage. A second form of Vasti can also be applied. Along with a relief of symptoms and improvements in physical disorders, many people, after experiencing Panchakarma, feel lighter, more energized, and look younger. The body’s ability to heal itself is deeply enhanced with the techniques of Panchakarma. By embracing its methods, we eliminate obstacles to complete balance in our bodies and allow the powerful flow of our healing energy to restore our health, our natural glow, and our zest for life.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/6/2011 at 03:32 PM
July 6, 2011

The Music of This World
Natural Sounds Meditation

Meditating with the natural sounds of nature will help you connect to something larger than yourself.

The tool most commonly used to focus our minds in meditation is the breath. When we sit down to meditate, drawing our attention inward counteracts our habitual tendency to be scattered. Meditation on the breath helps us gather our energy into our bodies, centering and grounding us in the present moment. Almost as readily available as our breath are the sounds of the natural world. From rain to wind to the ocean and birds, meditating on these aural manifestations brings us not only a sense of peace, but also an experience of connection to the physical world.

It is easy to get stuck inside our own heads and our individual lives. We get caught up in our goals and plans and almost forget that we live in a world that is always there, humming away in the background. There is an internal shift that occurs when we tune into that background and really give it our attention. It’s as if we are discovering a more expansive world, because we are. We are also experiencing ourselves in relation to something larger. This discovery makes us feel rejuvenated and more expansive.

The vast and ceaselessly churning ocean is an ideal place for meditating on the sounds of nature. Sit quietly and surrender to the sounds of the thundering, crashing waves. Let go of your ambitions and listen. Rivers and lakes also sing their own songs. Even if you live in the middle of a city, the wind howls and whistles and the rain taps out a variety of sounds depending on where it falls—on the sidewalk, a tin roof, a car window, or a muddy slope. Tune into these sounds next time you hear them instead of letting them fade into the background. Stop and listen as if you are hearing a sublime piece of music. Let the music of this world take you on a journey of natural sounds.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/7/2011 at 05:04 PM
July 7, 2011

A Self-Created State
Worry

Worry is an extension of fear and can also set you up for attracting that which you don’t want in your life.

We have all had the experience of worrying about something at some point in our lives. Some of us have a habitual tendency to worry, and all of us have known someone who is a chronic worrier. Worry is an extension of fear and can be a very draining experience. In order for worry to exist, we have to imagine that something bad might happen. What we are worrying about has not happened yet, however, so this bad thing is by definition a fantasy. Understood this way, worry is a self-created state of needless fear. Still, most of us worry.

One reason we worry is because we feel like we’re not in control. For example, you might worry about your loved ones driving home in bad weather. There is nothing you can do to guarantee their safe passage, but you worry until you find out they have reached their destination unharmed. In this instance, worry is an attempt to feel useful and in control. However, worrying does nothing to ensure a positive outcome and it has an unpleasant effect on your body, mind, and spirit. The good news is that there are ways to transform this kind of worry so that it has a healing effect. Just as worry uses the imagination, so does the antidote to worry. Next time you find that you are worrying, imagine the best result instead of anticipating the worst outcome. Visualize your loved ones’ path bathed in white light and clearly see in your mind’s eye their safe arrival. Imagine angels or guides watching over them as they make their way home. Generate peace and well-being instead of nervousn!
ess and unease within yourself.

Another reason we worry is that something that we know is pending but are avoiding is nagging us—an unpaid parking ticket, an upcoming test, an issue with a friend. In these cases, acknowledging that we are worried and taking action is the best solution. If you can confront the situation and own your power to change it, you’ll have no reason to worry.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

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  posted on 7/8/2011 at 08:21 PM
July 8, 2011

The Ways We Love
Choosing to Have a Mate or Be Single

Being single or in a being relationship are both valid options for living life and one is not better than the other.

The way we choose to love can be as unique as the way we choose to make a living, maintain our health, or entertain ourselves. Some choose to seek out a mate and enter into a partnership with a special individual, while others find immense satisfaction in staying single. There is no right or wrong way to be in your life when it comes to deciding whether or not to be in a relationship, even though society tends to put an emphasis on romantic partnerships. Whether you choose to go through life as part of a romantic relationship or live as a single unit, there are benefits to both. Feel free to be comfortable with whatever choice is right for you.

Choosing to be single is a wonderful way to spend time discovering yourself. You have more time and space to figure out what and how you want your life to be without having to keep someone else’s choices in mind. Being single gives you the freedom to do what you want at a moment’s notice and the pride that comes with facing life on your own terms. Companionship, support, and affection can be found while spending quality time with friends, colleagues, and relatives. There is also the fun that comes with being able to date many different people without having to make a commitment. Choosing to have a mate, on the other hand, brings with it an opportunity to share your life with another person. There is comfort in the knowledge that you are facing the world with someone as a united front. When life is challenging, you are in a position to strengthen, as well as give each other comfort. There is also the inevitable transformation of self that comes from allowing another person t!
o so intimately be a part of your life.

Remember that what is right for one person may not be right for another, and people can transition between wanting to be with another person and wanting to be alone many times over the course of their lives. Whether you seek out a mate or live the single life, embracing it fully will ensure that either choice is as fulfilling as possible for you.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/11/2011 at 01:37 PM
July 11, 2011

Working through Silence
Noise as a Distraction

Distracting yourself with talk-radio and television can become mind-numbing if not taken in moderation.

Our lives are typically filled with noise. There are the noises from the outside world that we cannot control, and there are the noises we allow into our lives. These noises, from seemingly innocuous sources like the television and radio, can actually help us avoid dealing with uncomfortable thoughts and emotions. However, using noise as a distraction hurts more than it helps because you are numbing yourself to what may be internally bubbling up to the surface for you to look at and heal. Distracting yourself with talk-radio, television, or other background noises can also prevent you from finding closure to issues that haunt you.

Noise as a distraction can affect us in many ways. It can help you stay numb to emotions that you don’t want to feel, allow you to avoid dealing with problems, distract you from having to think, and make it easier for you to forget reality. Drowning out the thoughts and emotions you find uncomfortable or overwhelming can complicate your issues because it allows them to fester. By tuning out noise and relishing silence, you create the space to experience and express what you are hiding. It is only then that self-exploration can begin in earnest and you can stare down frightening issues. In silence, it becomes easier to let your strongest feelings come forth, deal with them, and find new ways of resolving your problems.

When you go within without the veil of noise to shield you from yourself, you’ll be able to figure out what you need to heal. Embracing silence and introspection allows you to work through your thoughts and emotions and transmute them. Free of the need for noise, you can accept your pain, anger, and frustration as they come up and turn them into opportunities to evolve.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

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  posted on 7/12/2011 at 02:46 PM
Open Vessels
The Power of Not Knowing

There is freedom in admitting that you don’t know something as that allows for a new learning experience to emerge.

There is wisdom in not knowing, and it is a wise person who can say, "I don't know." For no one knows everything. There are many types of wisdom - from intellectual to emotional to physical intelligence. Yet, even deemed experts in their fields do not know all there is to know about mathematics, yoga, literature, psychology, or art. It is a true master who professes ignorance, for only an empty vessel can be filled.

There are many things in life that we don't know, and there are many things we may have no interest in finding out. There is freedom in saying “I don’t know.” When we admit that we don't know something, we can then open ourselves up to the opportunity to learn. And there is power in that. We can’t possibly know everything. And when we think we do, we limit ourselves from growing and learning more than what we already do know. A person who can admit to not knowing tends to be more intellectually and emotionally confident than someone who pretends to know everything. They also tend to be more comfortable with who they are and don’t feel the need to bluff or cover up any perceived ignorance. People can actually end up appearing more foolish when they act as if they know something that they don't.

We would be wise to respect people who freely admit when they don't know something. They are being honest, with us and with themselves. And we, too, should feel no shame in saying, "I don't know." In doing so, we open ourselves up to the unknown. We can then discover what lies beyond our current levels of understanding. It is the wise person in life that answers questions with a question and inspires the pursuit of internal answers with a funny face, a shrug, and a comical, "I don't know."

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/13/2011 at 03:51 PM
July 13, 2011

Pity Party
Releasing Negativity

Having a pity party for yourself is alright as long as you learn from it and don’t dwell in it for long periods of time.

We all have days when the bad things seem to outweigh the good ones and we begin to think that life isn’t fair. You get stuck in traffic, which makes you late for an important meeting, and then your car gets towed. You might ask yourself, “Why me?” Events like this one can test anyone’s ability to be grateful and feel optimistic. If you have a tendency to feel sorry for yourself, and many of us do, things usually progress to the next stage: the pity party. You begin to feel like the innocent victim of a dismal fate because you are seeing your life through inaccurate lenses. Most of the thoughts that run through your mind at times like these are not helpful, and they mainly serve to increase your indignation and feelings of powerlessness. What these feelings and thoughts don’t do is change your circumstances or make you feel better.

When you have a terrible day, there should definitely be a time and place to have your feelings so you can process them. It’s important not to pretend that you are fine with things when you aren’t. It’s also important, however, to notice when you’re having a pity party. It’s a good idea to set a time limit in which to fully express your emotions and not feel guilty, ashamed, or judge yourself. Having a friend witness you during this process can be helpful. You may also want to write about your feelings. When your time is up, let go of the negativity you just expressed. You can declare your intention to your friend. If you’ve written down your feelings, you can burn the piece of paper or throw it in the recycling bin.

Try not to dwell on unpleasant experiences and do everything you can to avoid holding on to negative emotions. When you indulge in self-pity, you only make a bad day worse. Stop feeling sorry for yourself, release the notion that you are a victim, and notice the good that exists in your life.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/14/2011 at 03:32 PM
Having spent the past year trying to clean out my mother's house, this OM speaks volumes to me and this next year I'm going to spend letting things in our house move on!

The Weight of Objects
Clearing a Space for Change

We hold onto material objects because we think they make us feel secure, when in reality they are cluttering our lives.

In life, we tend to have an easier time acquiring possessions than we do getting rid of them. Just as we harbor emotional baggage that is difficult to let go of, our lives can tend to be filled with material objects that we may feel compelled to hold on to. Most people are not conscious of how much they own and how many of their possessions are no longer adding value to their life. They fiercely hold on to material objects because this makes them feel secure or comfortable. While it’s true that the ownership of “stuff” can make you feel good for awhile, it seldom satisfies the deep inner longings that nearly everyone has for fulfillment and satisfaction. It is only when we are ready to let go of our baggage and be vulnerable that it becomes possible to recognize the emotional hold that our possessions can have on us.

It’s not uncommon to hold on to material objects because we are attached to them or fear the empty spaces that will remain if we get rid of them. Giving away the souvenirs from a beloved voyage may feel like we are erasing the memory of that time in our life. We may also worry that our loved ones will feel hurt if we don’t keep the gifts they’ve given us. It’s easy to convince ourselves that unused possessions might come in handy someday or that parting with them will cause you emotional pain. However, when your personal space is filled with objects, there is no room for anything new to enter and stay in your life. Your collection of belongings may “protect” you from the uncertainties of an unknown future while keeping you stuck in the past. Holding on to unnecessary possessions often goes hand in hand with holding on to pain, anger, and resentment, and letting go of your material possessions may help you release emotional baggage.

When you make a conscious decision to fill your personal space with only the objects that you need or bring you joy, your energy level will soar. Clearing your personal space can lead to mental clarity and an improved memory. As you learn to have a more practical and temporary relationship to objects, positive changes will happen, and you’ll have space to create the life that you desire.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/15/2011 at 04:13 PM
July 15, 2011

The Most Fulfilling Road
Finding Your Next Step in Life

It is when you are willing to listen to yourself and be fearless that figuring out your next step becomes easy.

Our lives are made up of a complex network of pathways that we can use to move from one phase of life to the next. For some of us, our paths are wide, smooth, and clearly marked. Many people, however, find that they have a difficult time figuring out where they need to go next. Determining which “next step” will land you on the most direct route to fulfillment and the realization of your life purpose may not seem easy.

There are many ways to discover what the next step on your life path should be. If you are someone who seeks to satisfy your soul, it is vital that you make this inquiry. Often, your inner voice will counsel you that it’s time for a change, and it is very important to trust yourself because only you know what is best for you. Personal growth always results when you let yourself expand beyond the farthest borders of what your life has been so far. When figuring out what your next step will be, you may want to review your life experiences. The choices you’ve made and the dreams you’ve held onto can give you an idea of what you don’t want to do anymore and what you might like to do next. It is also a good idea to think about creative ways you can use your skills and satisfy your passions. Visualizing your perfect future and making a list of ways to manifest that future can help you choose a logical next step that’s in harmony with your desires. Meditation, journal writing, taki!
ng a class, and other creative activities may inspire you and provide insight regarding the next step in life that will bring you the most satisfaction.

It is when you are willing to listen to yourself and be fearless that figuring out your next step becomes easy. Beneath the fear and hesitation and uncertainty lies your inner knowing that always knows which step you need to take next. If you can allow the taking of your next step to be as easy as putting one foot in front of the next, you’ll notice that your next step is always the one that is right in front of you. All you have to do is put one foot forward and on the ground.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/18/2011 at 12:54 PM
July 18, 2011

Evolution through Exploration
Purpose

Humans for the most part are not born consciously knowing what their purpose is and it must be found through exploration.

Most living things belong to a particular soul group and are born knowing their purpose in life. An animal will spend its day foraging for food, taking care of itself and its young, and creating a home. No one tells an animal to do this, yet it instinctively knows how. Humans, for the most part, are not born consciously knowing what their purpose is.

Purpose gives our life meaning. When you discover your purpose, you can live your life with intention and make choices that serve your objective for why you are here on the planet. Finding your purpose is not always easy. You must embrace life wholeheartedly, explore many different pathways, and allow yourself to grow. Your purpose is as unique as you are and will evolve as you move through life. You don’t need anyone’s permission to fulfill your purpose, and no one can tell you what that purpose is. Finding and fulfilling your purpose can be a lifelong endeavor. To figure out what your purpose is, ask yourself what drives you – not what forces you out of bed in the morning, but what makes you glad to be alive. Make a list of activities that you wish you were involved in or think about a career path that you would love to embark upon. These are the endeavors that can help you fulfill your purpose and bring you the most satisfaction.

Picture yourself working on projects that don’t interest you or fulfill your purpose, yet they help satisfy your basic survival needs. Imagine how living this way each day would make you feel. Next, picture yourself devoting your time to projects that spark your imagination, inspire, excite, and satisfy you. More often than not, these activities are some of the ways that you can fulfill your life purpose. Time spent on these endeavors will never feel like a waste. Live your life with purpose, and you will feel significant and capable because every action you take and each choice you make will have meaning to it.

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____________________
Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/19/2011 at 06:46 PM
July 19, 2011

Staying Afloat
Riding the Wave of Life

While riding the wave of life you must also practice stillness so you can flow with, rather than resist the wave’s motion.

Our lives are continually in motion, buoyed by the wave that is the universe’s flow. As the wave rises and falls, we are carried forward, through life’s high and low points. The universe’s flow may take us to a place in life where we would rather not be. As tempting as it can be to fight the direction and size of this wave that propels us, riding the wave is intended to make life easier. When you ride the wave, your life can evolve naturally and with minimal effort. Riding the wave, however, is not a passive experience. It is an active process that requires you to be attentive, centered, and awake. You must also practice stillness so you can flow with, rather than resist the wave’s motion.

Because life is dynamic and always changing, it is when we try to make the wave stand still or resist its direction that we are likely to get pulled under by its weight. If you try to move against the wave, you may feel as if you are trapped by it and have no control over your destiny. When you reach a low point while riding the wave and find your feet touching bottom, remember to stay standing so that you can leap forward along with the wave the next time it rises. Trying to resist life’s flow is a losing proposition and costly because you waste energy.

Riding the wave allows you to move forward without expending too much of your own efforts. When you ride the wave, you are carried by it and your head can “stay above water” as you go wherever it takes you. It can be difficult to trust the universe and let go of the urge to fight life’s flow, and you may find it easier to ride the wave if you can stay calm and relaxed. Riding the wave will always take you where you need to go.

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____________________
Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/20/2011 at 03:37 PM
Memories of the Soul
Past Life Regression

The effects of a past life can manifest in your current life in many ways but should be used as a tool, not an excuse.

Inside our subconscious lie our memories from past lives. Though we seldom remember even having lived these past lives, the experiences we had living them have had a hand in shaping who we are today. The effects of a past life can manifest in a later lifetime in many ways - phobias, self-limiting beliefs, physical problems, or innate creative abilities. Violence, death, and trauma in a past life may show up as fear, uncontrollable anger, or low self-esteem in this one, while positive experiences from an earlier lifetime may cause you to feel strongly drawn to certain people, places, or objects without knowing why.

Many people turn to past life regression therapists to revisit their past lives. Past life regression allows you to recall the memories and emotions associated with a past life that continue to exert an influence over your present reality. You may not have even been aware that these experiences are still affecting you today. Past life regression therapy can offer you a unique opportunity to reconnect with these memories so you can understand them and free yourself.

To discover more about your past lives, consider keeping a notebook where you can record anything that could be a memory from a different lifetime. You may also feel drawn to a particular period in history, a seemingly unfamiliar locale, or a new person you’ve met who seems oddly familiar. Pick a time and choose a place where you can relax. Envision your body being filled with healing white light. Remember that nothing you see or hear will harm you. Ask yourself what you hope to achieve through regression and connect with your inner vision. Observe what you see without judgment. When you are done, think about how what you experienced relates to your present life. There may be beliefs from a past life that you are still operating under but are now ready to let go of. The significance of your past life memory may not be immediately obvious until much later. You can make the most of your past lives by learning from them. While past life regression can be an exciting journey, it!
is not a substitute for living in the present where we are most needed right here and now.

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Sometimes we can't choose the music life gives us - but we damn sure can choose how we dance!




 

Zen Peach



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  posted on 7/21/2011 at 04:34 PM
July 21, 2011

Things We Can’t Control
Allow, Trust

We develop grace as we learn with the guiding hand of the universe, life will unfold exactly the way it should.

The idea of trusting the universe is a popular one these days, but many of us don’t know what this really means and we often have a hard time doing it. This is partly because the story of humankind is most often presented as a story about struggle, control, and survival, instead of one of trust and collaboration with the universe. Yet, in truth, we need to adhere to both ideas in this life.

On the one hand, there is much to be said about exerting control over our environment. We created shelter to protect ourselves from the elements. We hunted for animals and invented agriculture to feed ourselves. We built social infrastructures to protect ourselves and create community. This is how we survive and grow as a civilization. However, it is also clear that there are plenty of things that we cannot control, no matter how hard we try, and we often receive support from an unseen force – a universe that provides us with what we cannot provide for ourselves.

It is a good idea to take responsibility for the things in life that we can control or create. We work so we can feed, clothe, and shelter our loved ones and ourselves. We manifest our dreams and visions in physical form with hard work and forethought. But at a certain point, when we have done all that we can, we must let go and allow the universe to take over. This requires trust. It requires a trust that runs deeper than just expecting things to turn out the way we want them to. Sometimes they will, and sometimes they won’t. We develop equanimity and grace as we learn to trust that, with the guiding hand of the universe, life will unfold exactly the way it should. We are engaged in an ongoing relationship with a universe that responds to our thoughts and actions.

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  posted on 7/22/2011 at 05:25 PM
July 22, 2011

Expanding Their Vision
Nine Ways to Help Others Awaken to Consciousness

By simply being yourself, you can help the people in your life see a living example of consciousness.

1. Living by your values allows you to become a positive source of inspiration for others. Don’t hide – express yourself and embrace life without reservation. By simply being yourself, you can help the people in your life see how one person can make a difference by being a living example of consciousness.

2. When you communicate your views, do so casually and in a nondogmatic manner. Allow the people you speak with to ask questions. Offer only as much information as they are ready to hear.

3. Igniting the spark of consciousness can be as easy as giving someone a gift. A favorite book, a medicine bag, or a beautiful gemstone can pique your loved ones’ curiosity and prompt them to begin an exploration of the soul.

4. Teaching a friend, relative, or colleague to meditate or chant can put them on the path to consciousness while simultaneously reducing their stress levels.

5. Others may want to know more about living consciously but are unsure of how to begin. Starting a discussion group – even a virtual one – can help you reach out to individuals that are eager to learn.

6. By recognizing and acknowledging the inherent value in everyone you encounter, you can teach them how to value others. Sometimes, the easiest way to encourage people – even challenging ones - to respect others is to respect them first.

7. Invite people from your personal and professional lives to join you in attending a ceremony or ritual. The experience may touch them in a profound way or introduce them to a new spiritual path.

8. Casually point out the interconnectedness of all living beings using concrete, everyday examples. Many people are unaware of how their actions affect the world and are intrigued when they learn of the power they hold.

9. Introduce your loved ones to conscious living in a lighthearted and enjoyable way. Serve delicious organic recipes at gatherings, volunteer as a group, and show them how wonderful it can feel to be truly aware and connected to the universe.

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  posted on 7/25/2011 at 02:36 PM
July 25, 2011

Objects Of Power
Talismans

Having a talisman imbued with your intention is yet another tool you can use to assist you in your journey.

For millennia, mankind has found peace and solace in objects of significance. When cleansed and consecrated through ritual, such objects – be they gems, amulets, herbs, or written words – become talismans. A talisman is any item imbued with a specific power by its bearer to serve a specific intention. Ancient Egyptians used massive stone tablets as healing talismans while the Greeks and Romans used lead talismans to communicate with the spirit realm. Traditionally, a talisman acts to anchor energy in the physical plane. That energy may be protective in nature or may be intended to draw abundance, wealth, or a wide variety of blessings to its user. Today, a talisman may be made of wood, metal, paper, stone, or natural elements such as plants. Often, talismans are small enough to be easily worn or carried, and they may be marked with words or symbols that the talisman’s owner deems meaningful.

Creating and owning a talisman can reassure you and also serve to aide you in attracting what you want in life. You may use your talisman to help you attain health, security, or good luck. Or you may simply want to carry an object with you that will remind you of your search for soulful tranquility. In order to create a talisman, you must first determine its physical properties. This can be as innocuous as a strip of paper bearing the word “Love” and carried in a wooden box or cloth sack. You may prefer a more visible talisman, such as a metal amulet or a gemstone worn as jewelry. Before your object becomes a talisman, however, it must be charged. This can be done by cleansing the object – with water or with incense – and holding a ritual of your own making. Or, you can leave the object in moonlight or sunlight or bury it in the earth for a time. To preserve its effectiveness, talismans should be reconsecrated regularly.

Almost any object can be transformed into a talisman of protection, good fortune, health, love, or serenity. It may be strung on a cord and hung around the neck, worn on a belt, or carried in a purse or pocket. But the physical properties of the talisman are not as important as the intention of its bearer. If you are grounded in your desires, your talisman will give you a focal point that you can concentrate on to affirm your intention and help you achieve your goals.

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  posted on 7/26/2011 at 03:54 PM
July 26, 2011

Restorative Slumber
The Importance of Napping

A short nap during the afternoon is common in many countries and can provide an energy boost and clearer senses.

As we focus on the many obligations we gladly undertake in order to create the lives we want, sleep is often the first activity that we sacrifice. We’re compelled by both external and internal pressures to be productive during many of our waking hours. While this can lead to great feats of accomplishment, it also disrupts the body’s natural cycles and leaves us craving rest. Napping represents a pleasurable remedy to this widespread sleep deprivation. Though judged by many as a pastime of little children or the lazy, the need for a nap is a trait that all mammals share and an acceptable part of the day in many countries. It is also a free and effortless way to improve our health and lift our spirits. A nap is relaxing and can improve our mood, vision, reflexes, and memory.

Lack of sleep, whether ongoing or the result of a single night’s wakefulness, puts stress on the body and mind. It can negatively impact your physical and mental health. At one time, napping was considered a natural part of life. In the past hundred years, however, electricity and modern conveniences have provided us with more time to engage in personal and professional activities. Consequently there is now less time for sleep. A mere ten minutes of sleep in the middle of the day can leave you feeling more cheerful and alert. A half-hour long nap can sharpen your senses and refresh your energy reserves, and a shorter nap can even sustain you through a long day. Napping can help you make up for lost sleep and serves as a supplement to your usual sleep schedule. You may need to give yourself permission to nap by making naptime a part of your day.

Feelings of guilt about napping or being preoccupied with other activities can keep you awake when you are trying to take a nap. If you need help, surround yourself with soft pillows and blankets or soothing music. Try to take a nap at the same time each day and use an alarm clock to ensure that you don’t fall into too deep a sleep. Learning to nap and enjoying its benefits can help you reclaim your natural right to nap. You nourish your being every time you take a nap.

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  posted on 7/27/2011 at 03:31 PM
July 27, 2011

Spirit of the Sea
Whale Medicine

Like the whales each of us has a unique song or gift to offer the world as is meant to be heard by others.

Native Americans teach us that the Great Spirit speaks to us through our animal brethren. The whale is one animal that we can learn from. Whales have existed for over 50 million years and are considered to be record-keepers who possess knowledge of the past.

It is through the vibrations of their unique sound that they release this ancient wisdom to us. At the same time, their sound carries across such great distances that whales can enter the realm of the future where they can acquire knowledge of what is to come. Every whale sings a song, and they never repeat the same pattern when they sing their song. Since whales must be conscious at all times in order to breathe, they cannot afford to fall into an unconscious state for too long. Never completely asleep, their brain has constant access to the collective unconscious where all answers lie. Whales float peacefully, secure in the ocean environment that supports and sustains them.

You can learn from the wisdom of whales by remembering to express what’s uniquely yours. Each of us has a unique “song” or gift to offer the world. Your song is meant to be sung by you and heard by others. No one else can sing this song but you, and your song is medicine for the healing of the planet. Like whales, you can choose to access information about the future when you go into a meditative state. Whales teach us to look at where we came from and where we are headed. Knowing that our past helps shape our future, we can remember to make positive choices regarding our lives, the environment, and our world. Like whales, we can remember to stay awake and actively engaged in a universe that supports and sustains us. When we express ourselves and share our unique gifts, we add our wisdom and vibration to the planet.

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  posted on 7/28/2011 at 03:18 PM
July 28, 2011

As Blessed as You Want to Be
The Power of Staying Positive

Positive thinking dramatically increases your chances of success in any endeavor.

Our thoughts are not simply ethereal pieces of information that enter our minds and then disappear. The words and ideas that we think can shape our lives and drive us toward success and happiness or failure and distress. How you think and feel can have a profound effect on your ability to recognize opportunity, how well you perform, and the outcome of the goals that you’ve set for yourself. When you maintain an optimistic outlook and make an effort to harbor only positive thoughts, you begin to create the circumstances conducive to you achieving what you desire. You feel in control and few of life’s challenges seem truly overwhelming because it is in your nature to expect a positive conclusion. An optimistic mind is also an honest one. Staying positive does not mean that you ignore difficulties or disregard limitations. Instead, it means spending time focusing only on the thoughts that are conducive to your well-being and progress.

Positive thinking dramatically increases your chances of success in any endeavor. When you’re sure that you are worthy and that achievement is within your grasp, you start to relax and look for solutions rather than dwelling on problems. You are more likely to imagine positive situations or outcomes and disregard the thoughts related to giving up, failure, or roadblocks. What the mind expects, it finds. If you anticipate joy, good health, happiness, and accomplishment, then you will experience each one. Thinking positively may sound like a simple shift in attention – and it is – but it is a mind-set that must be developed. Whenever a negative thought enters your mind, try immediately replacing it with a constructive or optimistic one. With persistence, you can condition your mind to judge fleeting, self-defeating thoughts as inconsequential and dismiss them.

It is within your power to become as happy, content, or successful as you make up your mind to be. Staying positive may not have an immediate effect on your situation, but it will likely have a profound and instantaneous effect on your mood and the quality of your experiences. In order for positive thinking to change your life, it must become your predominant mind-set. Once you are committed to embracing positive thinking, you’ll start believing that everything that you want is within your grasp.

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  posted on 7/28/2011 at 04:27 PM
Thanks Ann...................

 

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  posted on 7/29/2011 at 04:46 PM
July 29, 2011

Simple Serenity
Navel Meditation

Navel meditation is one of the easiest ways to introduce yourself to quieting your mind.

Journeys of lifelong evolution often begin simply. No matter how complex the goal or desire we have nurtured in our souls, the first steps we take are nearly always basic and uncomplicated. Navel meditation, a creation of the Taoist tradition and the oldest form of meditation recognized in China and India, is a simple practice suitable for those experienced in the art of meditation, yet it is also a wonderful introductory meditation for novices. It utilizes the natural rhythms of the breath and the regular movement of the abdomen as a means to focus awareness and rid oneself of extraneous thoughts. As you concentrate on the breath, the chaos within reveals itself, allowing you to gently train your mind to accept stillness as its natural state.

To begin, assume a comfortable and natural seated position容ither cross-legged on a cushion on the floor or on a chair with your legs facing forward. Maintaining an upright, balanced posture will ensure that you are physically centered and prevent fatigue. Close your eyes and relax your body gradually, starting at the toes and ending at the crown of the head. Take a moment to note any physical sensations you are feeling, such as the hardness of the floor under your legs or the weight of a piece of jewelry. When you are relaxed, breathe through the nose at your natural pace. With each inhalation, draw air deep into the abdomen, allowing the area surrounding your navel to rise and fall. Gradually focus your attention on the sensations caused by the inhalation and exhalation of breath. Feel the air flowing in and out of the nostrils as well as the expansion and contraction of the abdomen. If you find it difficult to concentrate on both sensations, concentrate only on the moveme!
nt of the navel area.

As you endeavor to commune with the breath, you may notice that your mind strays. When this occurs, do not attach any significance to your thoughts. Simply bring your attention back to the flow of air into and out of your body and the rise and fall of your navel. Eventually, the torrent of mental noise flooding your mind will slow to a trickle, and you will learn to control the current of your thoughts until you are no longer at the mercy of your reactions. The more you practice this meditation, daily if possible, the more you will be able to get back to this relaxed state easily throughout your day.

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  posted on 8/1/2011 at 01:27 PM
Staying Conscious
Staying Grounded in a Big City or Busy World

For a more grounded life, choose not to get caught up in the fast-paced world around you.

1. Live simply and live deliberately. By choosing not to get caught up in the details of this fast-paced world, you are doing your part to slow down. You will discover that you have more time to enjoy being alive.

2. Stay in touch with yourself. Soul searching, meditation, and journaling are just a few of the many activities you can take part in to stay aware and learn as much as you can about your emotions, reactions, likes, dislikes, dreams, and fears. Having a solid sense of self gives you a firm foundation for living in this world.

3. Support or teach others as often as you can. This can help you form connections with people while also giving you an opportunity to make the world a better place.

4. Consciously choose what you will allow into your being. The media bombards us with visions of hate, war, and pain. Be judicious about what you read, watch, and listen to.

5. Acknowledge the beauty that resides around you. Whether you live in a sprawling metropolis or a stereotypical suburb, there are natural and man-made wonders just waiting to be discovered by you.

6. Nurture your ties to your tribe. If you don’t have one, create a community that you can belong to. Modern life can be isolating. When you have a tribe, you have a circle that you are a part of. Its members – loved ones, friends, or neighbors - can be a source of support, caring, guidance, and companionship.

7. See the larger picture. Remember the way that you choose to live is not the only way to live. Widen your perspective by exploring other modes of being through research, travel, and discussion.

8. Embrace the challenges that life presents to you, and challenge yourself often. After a time, even the most exciting jobs or lifestyles can seem routine. Never stop assimilating new knowledge about whatever you are doing, and your life will never seem dull.

9. Move your body. In this busy world, it can be easy to live a sedentary life. Movement reacquaints us with our bodies and connects us to the earth in a visceral way. It also restores our vitality.

10. Make time for stillness, silence, and solitude. The world can be noisy, and we are subject to all kinds of noises nearly every waking hour. We are also often “on the go” and unable to relax. Being alone in a peaceful place and making time for quiet can help you stay in touch with yourself.

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  posted on 8/2/2011 at 04:31 PM
August 2, 2011

Surrender Box
A Place for Worries and Fears

A surrender box is a tool to let go of our burdens so the universe can take care of them for us.

There are times when our minds become too full. Our to-do lists, worries, plans, and dreams may be so crowded together in our heads that we don’t have room to think. We may believe that we are somehow taking care of our desires and concerns by keeping them at the forefront of our minds. In maintaining our mental hold on every detail, however, we may actually delay the realization of our dreams and the resolution of our worries because we won’t let them go. At times such as these, we may want to use a surrender box.

A surrender box allows us to let go of our worries and desires so the universe can take care of them for us. We write down what we want or need to happen and then place the note into a box. By writing and placing our thoughts in the box, we are taking action and letting the universe know we need help and are willing to surrender our feelings. We give ourselves permission to not concern ourselves with that problem any longer and trust that the universe is taking care of it. You may even want to decorate your box and place it in a special place. Your surrender box is a sacred container for your worries. Not only do you free up space in your mind by letting go of our worries and desires and dropping them into your surrender box, but you are giving your burden over to a higher power. Once we drop our worries and desires into the surrender box, we free our minds so we can be fully present in each moment.

Surrendering our worries and concerns and placing them in the hands of the universe doesn’t mean that we’ve given up or have been defeated. Instead, we are releasing the realization of our desires and the resolution of our worries and no longer concerning ourselves with their outcomes. It’s always fun to go back and pull the slips of paper out of the box once your requests have been granted. And it’s amazing how quickly problems go away and dreams come true when we finally let go and allow a higher power to help us.

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  posted on 8/3/2011 at 03:28 PM
August 3, 2011

Cultivating the Seed Within
Peace

We can learn to locate the seed of peace inside ourselves in order to have a reliable source of serenity.

In our noisy world, we often find ourselves longing for peace and searching to find it somewhere else. While it’s true that there are places we can visit where we can experience peace, such as sacred sites or buildings, we do not need to wait until we get to one of these places to feel at peace. Instead, we can learn to locate the seed of peace inside ourselves and cultivate it so that it grows into a reliable source of serenity that we can always access, no matter where we are.

We experience peace when we are in a state of mental calm and serenity. It might surprise you to notice how infrequently you allow yourself to be free from anxiety. Realizing this is the first step to inner peace. If you wait until all the details of your life are taken care of to allow yourself to experience peace, you will never feel peaceful because there is always something that your mind can grab onto to create anxiety. It is important to consciously set aside your worries and make time to cultivate inner peace.

Ideally, you could schedule time each day to meditate on peace and experience what it feels like to be calm and serene. It takes practice to learn how to let go of your worries, so give yourself some time. Inhale deeply, and feel your worries dissolve with every exhale. Remind yourself that soon enough you will be able to take care of everything you need to, but right now you are taking a break. As the clutter of your thoughts and concerns clear away, you will start to feel more serene. Allow yourself to move deeper into this state with each inhale. Realize that you have the power to free yourself from anxiety simply by deciding to do so. The more you practice feeling peaceful, the easier it will be for you to feel at peace.

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