Friday, May 25, 2012

Which of Your Selves Is More Sacred to You?

You have a spiritual self and a material self that operates in the world. Which do you nurture first? How’s that working for you?

You have a “foot in two worlds.” One foot is in the spiritual world, which is where you come from, where you return to, though, that world stays with you through your human experience. The other foot is in the material world that is heavily influenced by society. Which world is more sacred to you? Are we meant to choose one or the other?

Society tells you that it is the authority about who you are and how you can define yourself. It tells you what you deserve based on its material-world view. It tells you what you can have and what you have to do to get it. Basically, society “allows” you to be, do, and have based on its viewpoint that changes with the wind. And that wind blows in a circumscribed area. This means society decides, describes, and defines limitation for you. It convinces you that validation comes from outside you; that it comes from society, which is comprised of far too many others to know whom to please and in what ways.

Your spiritual self recognizes there is a divine order at work at all times, and that the Divine is without limitations. It recognizes that this divine order means there is a divine purpose in and for all things. The more engaged with your spiritual self that you are, the more these aspects resonate within you and ripple outward into and through your life experience.

Your spiritual self is aware of and uses – to the degree you allow it – intuition. This means you can tap into, flow with, divine order and purpose, as often as you allow yourself to do this. In this state of Mind and Being, you don’t always need to understand what the Divine is doing, or why, when, or how – until you do.

In the spiritual world, you have experiences that are personal and valid – and validated by Spirit, experiences that many in society wouldn’t validate as “real” or worth pursuing. But, kindred others who follow a spiritual path would understand.

Each of us always has a choice as to whether the material or spiritual world is more sacred to us. This doesn’t mean we are to shun the material world. After all, we live in it. We use it and contribute (hopefully) to its existence. The material world is part of our sustenance just as we are part of its sustenance.

But, which world nurtures you first and most? Which one encourages you first and most to be, do, and have in the ways you desire? Which one encourages you first and most to be your authentic self? Which world is the source of your authority? Which one do you usually choose as your source of authority in and of all things?
Society is like your body. And though the body is an amazing compilation of cells performing specific tasks in order to support the “whole,” it is nothing – it cannot exist – without consciousness. It performs and functions even better with conscious awareness.

One of these worlds holds the frequency of love in greater, natural abundance and asks you often, What is sacred to you? The one that is more sacred to you is the one you will nurture first and most.

We too often hold onto what keeps us unhappy or discontent or unfulfilled, because we may have to really look at ourselves and change something. Society has predominantly taught us to value and rely on the known, according to its definitions of acceptable “knowns.” This is why the unknown frightens us so much – more than it needs to, more than it was meant to, especially when it comes to knowing ourselves.

When you’re clear that your spiritual self is more sacred to you, you can let go of some of that fear, or at least explore the unknown knowing you can rely on divine order, divine purpose, and on yourself as an integral part of that larger aspect you come from and return to. This also means the energetic frequency you transmit as a result of your expanded Knowing, to others and to Law of Attraction, will create more experiences you desire, as well as allow you to experience all of life and yourself more in the way you desire.

Albert B. Simpson said one of the signs of a spiritual life is enthusiasm. This makes sense. If you feel connected to and in flow with your spiritual self and the spiritual universe, how could you lack enthusiasm, at least a good deal of the time? Trying to appease society or even ego only, can drain or deplete enthusiasm. You can be enthusiastic about what you do in the world, but that feeling is amplified if inspired and supported by enthusiasm that springs naturally from spirituality.

Harmony is meant to exist between the two worlds, but this is to be a result of your spiritual development that allows you to contribute authentically to society, not by you or your spirituality being dictated to by society. Your spiritual self gives you your voice in your life and in the world. It encourages and inspires head-and-heart alignment in decision making. It leads you into integrity.

Through the sacredness revealed through spirituality, we can extend sacredness to the Earth and those we share it with. We open the doorway of the future we desire when we realize and take ownership of our spirituality in the now. Inner guidance is the most profound and effective tool, method, or system you could ever use, especially as the foundation of your Mind and Being. Spirituality is the keeper of these ways.

If you want your experience of both worlds to keep you in a state of appreciation, make your spirituality the world you nurture first, then bring the result of how this influences you into the world. This allows you to make both worlds a sacred experience, in the way this was always meant to be for us.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, May 11, 2012

Reduce the Drama in Your Life and Become Your Own Healer

Do you make a genuine effort to process through and beyond negative emotions? If you don’t, and these emotions get stuck in your energy field, life can become one drama after another.

You’re here to live and to learn from your day-to-day experiences. You can allow your experiences to be toxic to you energetically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and bodily, or you can transmute your experiences into opportunities, especially to expand conscious awareness and Knowing.

Ernest Holmes wrote: “Life is what consciousness makes it,” meaning our individual consciousness, followed by local and global consciousness, based on the individuals who comprise it. If you reinterpret or shift perspective about what happens – your experiences that is, on an ongoing basis, you become your own healer. Then you can become a healer-helper with others to assist them to become their own healers.

Just as with physical wounds, we are meant to heal our inner wounds, not cause them to linger or fester, and rob us of life force. Through this healing, we are meant to increase our understanding and compassion for wounds, the wounded, those who wound – even if we have to choose to no longer associate with them, and better understand and appreciate the dynamics and importance of healing.

Getting stuck in anger and resentment keeps us wounded and leads us to be stuck in drama mode. Our bodies get addicted to the chemicals released when we experience any emotion often, positive or negative. As a result of chemicals released often in response to negative emotions, we experience a predilection, or addiction, to trap anger and resentment in our energy field. We imprison ourselves with them, like cell bars on our psyche. We watch the fun side of living and creating from within our enclosure, too invested or embroiled in dramas to let them go.

Imagine that energy field around you. It’s with you everywhere you go. Picture all those angers and resentments like various sizes and shapes of debris – like debris and trash thrown into a stream – that snags and hangs up and blocks the flow. We are designed and entitled to feel unpleasant emotions because of the vital messages ALL of our feelings convey, but not to give negative emotions a permanent home in our energy field, which then becomes a field of dramas, past and attracted. Getting stuck in drama keeps you from perceiving, feeling, knowing - a Bigger Picture, a Larger Truth – best examined, processed, and integrated from a spiritual perspective.

An important part of what you’re here to do is to expand your conscious awareness, which includes changing inefficient thinking and emotions that keep you from living your best inner and outer life experience. The more you do this – make these changes – the more Law of Attraction can cease to create matching scenarios to what’s negative in your energy field. Think back over the last three to six months, or longer, and ask yourself how many unpleasant scenarios were either repetitions or variations on a theme.

If your dramas tend to repeat or drama seems to be how your life experience goes, you can pause and really look at this. You can remind yourself that your thoughts directly contribute to your manifestations, just as your perceptions and interpretations of happenings contribute to how you experience them. You can look at what needs to change. Start with your thoughts and emotions then move this change outward, into your life, based on what you learn about yourself.

You may have to release addictions to ways of thinking, perceiving, believing you need to or must feel a certain way, behaviors, and actions you take. You may have to flip what you believe about reality. You may have to see that you create and co-create unpleasantness to get your attention on something within your belief system that needs to change so that you can experience more of the unsullied you that you came here to be, and share what you came here to share rather than live holed up inside yourself… to choose wholeness instead of holed up in drama.

Some events and moments in your life will be dramatic (it isn’t about the false belief that if you just do something the right way, you’ll never have a problem ever again – it’s about practicing to the point of knowing you can manage yourself well – trust yourself to act from integrity - through any such times – and learn from them, whether just irritations or truly dramatic). Maybe your initial reaction will be to respond with more drama or from your conditioned drama response. However, if you practice pulling back to re-vision, re-perceive, and re-frame, you can then approach such experiences from a what-productive-thing-can-be-done-or-learned mode. This may be outward, but it will always be a seed at the inner level first.

The seed of who you are – your best self and best life – is inside you, possibly buried under a lifetime of beliefs that misdirect you, which in turn misdirects your energy causing you to “misdirect” Law of Attraction. Begin the practice of noticing this. Appreciate that you can choose to change what’s in your energy field, which will change your life, how you perceive drama, and how you respond to it.

Understand that what you feel – your feelings – are messengers and not to be controlled. Your emotions are what you do with or about what you feel, and can be managed. Though some people avoid it, processing negative emotions is necessary, but for the purpose of traveling through the process and arriving somewhere, not processing to the point where it becomes a way of life, with no progress made. People addicted to drama tend to allow identifying with and processing dramas – or not processing them at all - to replace healing and living.

Make an effort to cease anticipating future experiences based on any negativity from your past, or creating, by default, negative experiences that are within your control. Appreciate that every experience holds something for you to see and learn about you. Appreciate positive potentials and possibilities so they become probabilities. Believe in possibilities – without a need for drama, and your reality changes – starting at the most important, vital place – within you.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer

Friday, May 4, 2012

How Important or Easy Is It to Choose Better Behavior?

It’s become too easy to forget or to ignore the Golden Rule. We can choose to follow the behavior examples we see on “reality” shows or we can be examples of better behavior.

A light rain - more like a drizzle - began to fall as I sat reading on my sofa. It was ideal: a good novel, a soft rain, and quiet. Then a young boy walked by my window and stopped. A second young boy joined him then a third and a fourth. The first boy saw the birdseed on my window sill, commented on it, and pretended to eat it. The first boy was also speaking loudly, as though his friends were down the street instead of near him. The third boy said, “Be quiet. Someone may live here.” The second boy rapped on my window. He and the first boy laughed. The fourth boy was leaning against my front door and kept thumping on it. They were in no hurry to go elsewhere. My quiet had been disturbed.

I opened the door and looked at each boy in turn and said to all, “Hi. How’re you doing?” They looked surprised, but they didn’t run. The third boy, the tallest, said, “We’re staying out of the rain.” I didn’t point out that he was the only one standing in it, I just said, “That’s a good idea.”

Most of the birdseed had been knocked off the sill when the first two boys had seated themselves on the brick, and I couldn’t see the water dish. “You saw the birdseed?” I asked. “Is the water dish still there?” The second boy said it had fallen, which really meant it had been put or knocked down. Without my asking, he picked it up and put it back on the sill.

I told them the birds sing to me and I feed them and make sure they have water. The second boy said, “There’s a bird’s nest in there.” He pointed to a gray mass draped on limbs and I told him it was moss that I’d placed there, that I would love if the birds used it for their nests. He asked what moss is and I asked if he knew what pineapple was. He did. I told him that although it didn’t look like it and you couldn’t eat it, moss was a member of the pineapple family.

The fourth boy, silent up to this point, said, “People used to use moss because they didn’t have toilet paper.” (I did mention they were young boys; and, I did tidy his actual statement.) I told him that moss had also been mixed with mud to make insulated walls for houses. He repeated his statement about moss, which he probably found more interesting and definitely more amusing than architecture, and I added that people once used corncobs, as well, which got their attention and them into animated conversation.

A woman’s voice called out. It was the mother of the first boy, poking her head out of their front door. She said something to him in Spanish. I smiled at each boy and said, “I’m going back to what I was doing. Stay dry.” They lingered for about a minute after I went inside then quietly went their separate ways.

I could have yelled at them to get away from my house, and for disturbing the birdseed and water – but I also recall being that age and believing any land with grass growing on it was public domain. I could have scolded them for discussing a nature’s-call matter, but instead gave them more info. I could have gritched about this to others, not to mention replayed it in my mind as a reason to be angry or upset. Instead, I have a much more pleasant memory to replay. They may never mention our several minutes together to others, but I could just as easily have given them a reason to talk unfavorably about me to their families and neighborhood friends. Instead, we engaged in a friendly and somewhat informative chat.

I’d shared with them about exchanging something (seed and water) with the birds for their songs, something unique about moss, and some pre-modern hygiene trivia. They’d reminded me that we really can choose how we engage with others, that courtesy doesn’t have to be a lost or forgotten or ignored art. And, that we more often than not find what we look for – in ourselves, others, and life.

They gave me the opportunity to practice the Golden Rule… to remember that each of us wants to be recognized as a member of the human family, whatever our age… to remember that children and adults benefit from positive examples, even if we never see the results. That in each and every moment we are an example of something for someone – or can be.

Interestingly, using courtesy is one way to simplify our lives a bit. It’s far too common for people to fly into fits of temper over matters that don’t really merit it, an act which usually creates an even bigger and unnecessary disturbance. It’s far too easy to forget courtesy can go a long way, with strangers, associates, and especially people we’re in our closest relationships with. Too easy to forget the Golden Rule is a facet of Law of Attraction: treat others as you wish to be treated… because you WILL be, if not by them, by others… because we wear our energetic vibrations like invisible clothing, which is “seen” and responded to by others and considered an instruction by Law of Attraction.

The boys gave me an opportunity to enter a state of appreciation that I can remember common courtesy should be used as often as possible and is rewarding on many levels. That use of it more often than not creates outward ripples. Courtesy costs nothing; and the significant returns can be great, starting with how we feel about ourselves, as well as the memories we create for us and others.

Practice makes progress.

© Joyce Shafer