Saturday, December 24, 2011

Contemplation

Contemplation is the practice of stilling ourselves before God, moving ever deeper into the core of our being and simply offering ourselves to God in a totally vulnerable, loving way.  By offering ourselves to God in this way, God leads us into a life of amazing centeredness.  Each day, in this way, we experience a life through which God LIVES IN US for others.

Thomas Kelly (a Quaker missionary, writer, & scholar) explains this concept further: 
"What is here urged are secret habits of unceasing orientation of the deeps of our being about the Inward Light, ways of conducting our inward life so that we are perpetually bowing in worship, while we are also very busy in the world of daily affairs.  A Practicing Christian must above all be one who practices the perpetual return of the soul into the inner sanctuary, who brings the world into its Light and rejudges it, who brings the Light into the world with all its turmoil and its fitfulness and recreates it."
I keep finding myself drawn to the spiritually delicious phrase "the PERPETUAL RETURN OF THE SOUL into the inner sanctuary".  Kelly is describing WHERE contemplation happens.  And then he details HOW: rejudging the world with the Light of the Soul (I read this to mean 'discernment of the Truth rather than past bias') and bringing Light into the world to recreate reality in a positive way.

Whether you are Christian or not, I hope you discern the value and weight of Kelly's words.  We each have the personal responsibility to create our own reality and therefore our own personal happiness and unhappiness.  We also have the added bonus of spreading Light into the world for the greater good.  And this can be done regardless of what human circumstances we find ourselves in.

A loving union with God is the indwelling presence of the Divine in our hearts.  This is not merely a theological concept; it is a vital, intimate, relational reality at the core of our being.  Experiencing the Divine is about practice, rather than dogma or creed.  And daily contemplation is a way to practice the presence of God and to allow God to live through us.

So let the Light of YOUR Soul be filled with the humble awareness of God today.  You are a wonderful expression of Infinite Intelligience and you are awakening to "the breadth, length, height, and depth" (Eph 3:18) of God's true being as well as your own.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

A whole new life

While in the midst of holiday shopping, I had the pleasure to speak with someone whose life is changing in a couple of weeks.  This particular young man is excited to be moving onto a better life and enthusiastically shared the details with me.

His car was recently totalled.  Most people would feel devastated if their car was totalled.  Not this young man - he sees it as an opportunity - now he has a great new car! And this attitude paves the way for more good to come into his life.

After working in a small mall shop for four years, his 'ship has finally come in' and he has been hired to be a professional web designer in a different city.

New job, new home, new car. 

In a matter of weeks, his entire life has changed dramatically.  Opportunities have showed up in definitive ways.  He followed his intuitive hunches, labeled his life a SUCCESS, and now has a manifestation of good, happiness, and supply!  He is an example of attunement with Spiritual Natural Law. 

If you are in need of an positive affirmation for Success at this time, here is a great one:

"I make friends with hindrances and every obstacle becomes a stepping-stone.  Everything in the Universe, visible and invisible, is working to bring me my own.  What is rightfully mine is given me under Grace.  The tide of Destiny has turned and everything comes my way. 
 And I give thanks for my whirlwind success!" 


Blessings of Abundance to You All!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Decentered human existence vs. embracing true Divine self

Definition of DECENTERED HUMAN EXISTENCE:  having lost the true center of human identity in loving union with God, attempting to determine for itself the nature of its own being.*

Each one of us is created to experience our truest Self and deepest purpose through an intimate and loving union with God at the core of your Being.  When we play god in our lives, this union is lost.  We become self-referenced beings who have abandoned the center of our true identity in God.  And we see ourselves as APART FROM God instead of A PART of God.

Many biblical stories share this theme of decentered human existence.  In fact, a main example of this happens in the first chapters of Genesis.

After Cain murders his brother Abel, he "went away from the presence of the Lord, and settled in the land of Nod, east of Eden".  Notice that God did not abandon Cain.  Cain turned his back on God and the result was extreme decentering in Cain's life.  He finds himself in a land of wandering (the Hebrew term Nod means "wandering").  He has no firm center of identity, no solid foundation of meaning, and no root of purpose.

When we identify our Self as separate and apart from God, we distance ourselves from others and the consequences of our destructive actions.  We can see in our world today the consequences of this kind of thinking.  The FALSE SELF is fearful, possessive, manipulative, destructive, indulgent, and self-promoting.  This is why abandoning the False Self in order to cultivate conscious awareness of our true nature is essential.  We must move beyond the wounds and agendas and entrust ourselves to God's flow.

By finding and maintaining our relationship with God, we know our relationship to all things and we wander no more.  We are practicing the presence of God. Our loving union with God is put first and foremost ("You shall love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength"). 

When we embrace our true Divine self, our souls know the healing, love, and light of the Divine.  We are beholding the Lord.





* = This is a term I became more acquainted with as I read M. Robert Mulholland Jr's book The Deeper Journey: The Spirituality of Discovering Your True Self.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Empty bowls

I had the opportunity today to attend the Empty Bowls fundraiser.  What a wonderful event!  A friend and her daughter accompanied me and my son, and we saw many familiar faces. [Hi, again *smile* you know who you are!]

Do any of you have Empty Bowl fundraisers in your community? In case you are interested in finding/creating such an event in your community, I have located a helpful website: http://www.emptybowls.net/

What is the Empty Bowls fundraiser?  It is an event sponsored by the local potter's co-op and all monies raised go entirely to local food pantries.  Volunteers and businesses have generously donated the time, material and food. 

Local potters have donated bowls in a variety of shapes, colors and styles, which sell for $10, $20 or $30.  Also available is a simple meal of bread and soup. Purchased bowls are wrapped and taken home or washed and sanitized for a serving of delicious soups prepared by the BOCES Culinary Arts Students.

When I unwrapped our bowls at home, I noticed a small piece of paper that stated:

"This bowl was handmade using food safe clay and glazes.  It is both dishwasher and microwave safe. It was acquired at the Fredonia Potter's Co-op sponsored Empty Bowl Fund Raiser.  WHEN YOU FILL THIS BOWL, PLEASE KNOW THAT THERE ARE MANY HUNGRY PEOPLE NEARBY WHO'S BOWLS ARE EMPTY."

I love that this bowl is a vessel of Nourishment and Awareness of Many Blessings (Yours and Mine).  Gratitude and thankfulness fill my being and I send love, light, and healing to all those who are in TRUE NEED of basic survival things such as Food and Shelter.

Please join me in the World Hunger Grace now [that another friend reminded me of recently]:
For food in our world, where many walk in hunger,
For peace in our world, where many walk in fear,
For hope in our world, where many walk alone,
For light in our world, where many walk in darkness.
We give You humble thanks, O God.

Abundant blessings to All!