It's easy to forget that we are all perfect in our own design. Sometimes we muck it up with habits and choices that do not serve us. 

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From an adrenaline-based system to a heart-based system: Anchoring the Deep Heart

meditating-guru-boy-picture-id1015300864 From an adrenaline-based system to a heart-based system: Anchoring the Deep Heart

As I now awake to the melodious sound of happy birds instead of rushing people, to the Earth taking a deep breath, the Sun rising up on a new changing planet, I am in gratitude. We have all known that the pace and the impact of humanity without connection consciousness, without care to all beings or one another had to cease somehow. Little did we envision it would come in the form of a tiny particle. Yes there is tremendous hardship and for that my heart goes out. As we deepen together and awaken to the always connected universe, we are transitioning in force and unprecedented collective from normal to natural, from adrenaline-based stress-based living to a true sense of the underlying connection, love and universality based in the heart, our portal of oneness, of love at its highest singularity. We have the opportunity now more than ever to step out of normal which was devastating the planet into a more natural connected, radically inclusive, resonant relationship with our world, all of Creation and the Cosmos.

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373 Hits

Only a Silent Mind Can Be a Healing Mind

Only a Silent Mind Can Be a Healing Mind Only a Silent Mind Can Be a Healing Mind

Crises call for action, and the COVID-19 crisis has triggered global action, much of it motivated by alarm, fear, and the dread of uncertainty. But what about the individual person who feels afraid and uncertain? I’d like to propose an answer based on the silent mind. I realize that this approach might sound a bit alien and “spiritual” in the wrong way, but building castles in the air or retreating into yourself isn’t what silent mind is about.

Silent mind is about reconnecting to your source. Everyone relies on the top layer of the mind, which is active, constantly thinking and feeling. But when these feelings get fixated on anxiety, alarm, dread, and uncertainty, the active mind cannot pull itself out of its own spiral. Mental activity becomes useless to heal itself, just as a runaway car cannot apply its own brakes.

What is needed is a reset. The reset isn’t just mental. Your thoughts are received by every cell in your body, and in turn all kinds of processes are affected—the immune response, hormonal cycles, sleep, and overall mind-body balance, or homeostasis. If the active mind becomes confused and chaotic, balance is disrupted everywhere. What to do? 

Centuries ago, in every culture, a deeper level of mind was discovered, and the usual expression surrounding this level, which is silent, calm, and undisturbed, became religious, as in the Old Testament injunction, “Be still and know that I am God.” If we replace God with “your source,” the message comes through to modern ears: Be still and know that I am your source. The most direct result of heeding this message would be to meditate, because meditation gives direct access to silent mind.

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The Virus Can Give Your Life More Meaning

breathe The Virus Can Give Your Life More Meaning

One way to respond in a crisis is to reduce its threat. The other way is to add to the threat. The coronavirus COVID-19 might be the first collective crisis that many people have faced, and it poses an uncertain future in every country that confronts it. But this doesn’t change the two choices just mentioned. Know that your individual actions will have an impact on countless other people.

 

No matter how the COVID-19 pandemic resolves itself—something no one can predict—you can personally choose right now to reduce its threat. If you consciously make that choice, three positive things will happen. You will feel more in control; you will be on the side of healing; and you will add to the meaning of your life.

 

How to be more in control:

This begins by acting responsibly, following what the experts in disease control advise. By now everyone is aware of the need to stay at home, self-quarantine if you show any symptoms, keep 6 to 10 ft. away from other people in public, don’t take long plane flights, and wash your hands frequently (the medical school routine for scrubbing up applies here: Wash your hands vigorously while singing “Happy birthday to you” twice—and don’t forget your thumbs and between your fingers). The active ingredient in effective hand sanitizers is isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol, which you can also use by itself in at least a 60% solution with water.

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374 Hits

How To Spiritually Surf These Crazy Times

woman-meditating-in-the-nature-in-a-flower-field-with-closed-eyes-picture-id1161250308 How To Spiritually Surf These Crazy Times

I hope you are safe and staying healthy as we all deal with this life changing time we are in. Brian and I are isolating ourselves at home, we’ve stocked up on lots of Amy’s canned organic soup (which I hope tastes good as I’ve never eaten it before), and we are checking in with friends and family by phone, Facebook and Skype.

For the past few days I have been blessed to have the time to listen and read a variety of meditations and blogs that have been comforting and calming.

I have found that my best strategy right now is to stay in the present moment as much as possible and to not let my monkey mind get caught up in “what if” scenarios. Below are links to three free resources that I have found helpful:

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420 Hits

If You Aren’t You, Then Who Are You?

meditating If You Aren’t You, Then Who Are You?

Whether you call it your spiritual life, your inner journey, or a search for a higher power, there is a necessary process, known as waking up. It consists of no longer being unaware. By growing more conscious, you give up many things you once took for granted. You recognize that they were illusions, unproven assumptions, and second-hand opinions.
 

You can take a major step toward waking up right this minute. All you need to do is answer one questions: Who are you? This question is about your identity, which everyone takes for granted –so much so, in fact, that we lose ourselves in an illusion without ever realizing it.

Let’s start without any assumptions. Drop your assumption that you already know who you are, because what people really know is not who they really are but their story. Your story consists of everything you have amassed in the past through experience, belief, successes and failures, likes and dislikes. When you identify with these things, you mistake a dead relic of the past for who you really are. Your story might be good or bad, something to be proud of or not, filled with experiences you want to hold on to and others you would rather forget. None of this really matters when you want to know who you really are. You are more than your story.

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477 Hits

Hide-and-Seek with God

IMG_1855-1200x900

“I Am Loving Awareness”
—Ram Dass

Over the past decade, I have experienced divine connection in a variety of ways—in Nature, in solitary or group meditation, and with spiritual teachers who helped facilitate that falling away of form into formlessness. In spite of any longing on my part to hold onto it permanently, however, my experience of God came and went, arose and then receded. Repeatedly, I vacillated between the appearance and disappearance, almost as if I were playing hide-and-seek with God. Then Ram Dass died.

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396 Hits

Get Busy Being Still

being_still Get Busy Being Still

Get Busy Being Still… and be still while you’re busy.

When you still yourself from the turbulence that the mind creates, you have an opportunity to be present, to be Here.

We have to build a sensation at the protective personality level that knows there is more to the picture. We can dissolve more and more of that protective personality each time we sit and meditate. I recommend that you do some kind of meditation every day. We can then begin to develop some mastery about staying centered, staying in the awareness of the truth and the stillness within.

In the quiet space at the core, while we look out at the world, hear the sounds and see the activities, we can insist that it happens through a filter of okay-ness:

I Am the One. I Am the One who gets to have the various parts of me come together in one synchronized reality…

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955 Hits

How do we optimize our connections to ourselves and to the world?

galaxy How do we optimize our connections to ourselves and to the world?



I’ve been asked many times whether this is the aquarian age and it’s all just beginning, or if this is armageddon and this is the end, and I have to admit I don’t know.

The way I’ve usually copped out in dealing with it is saying, “Whichever way it goes, my work is the same. My work is to quiet my mind and open my heart and relieve suffering wherever I find it.” That seems to be what my life is about, and it doesn’t matter which it is- it’s the beginning of everything or the end of everything – regardless, that’s still what I gotta do.

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524 Hits

Find Your North Star

dipper Find Your North Star

Where are you headed?

The Practice:
Find your North Star.

Why?

I did a meditation retreat (at Spirit Rock, wonderful place, including for workshops). One evening as we walked out of the hall after the last sit, I was feeling rattled and discombobulated. (One of the benefits of a retreat – though it can be uncomfortable – is that it stirs up of the sediments of your psyche, which can muddy your mental waters for a while.)

I looked up at the stars shining brightly in the cold clear night, and soon noticed the Big Dipper. My eyes followed its pointing to Polaris, the North Star, and a wave of easing came over me. The star felt steady and reassuring, something you could count on. It connected I think with a young part of me who loved the outdoors and learned to believe that as long as he could locate the North Star, he could find his way out of the tangled woods and back to safety.

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441 Hits

Two (free) Fun Baby Steps to More Love, Better Health

babysteps Two (free) Fun Baby Steps to More Love, Better Health

As part of my commitment to stay healthy and get healthier this year, before I get out of bed each morning I begin each day listening to my Morning Love Raising feelingization.

This 14 minute audio is focused on bringing love, light and healing to my body, mind and spirit and sets me up to have a great day.

In the past I used to start my day looking at my email on my iPad (while still in bed) and depending on what kind of emails I had gotten over night, my day could easily be energized or ruined pretty quickly.

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401 Hits

Change Your Entire Life with this Simple Technique from Thích Nhất Hạnh.

man-standing-on-jetty-picture-id172467357 Change Your Entire Life with this Simple Technique from Thích Nhất Hạnh.

To be beautiful means to be yourself. You don’t need to be accepted by others. You need to accept yourself. ~ Thich Nhat Hanh

I was visiting a friend in New York City this past weekend as we discussed various elements of all things spiritual. Discussion of teachers, techniques, paths and so forth culminated into some personal and candid sharing with one another. She knew some of my past but not all of it. She’d never heard the stories of my self-inflicted cutting, or that I used to sleep on a dozen sharp knives because it gave me a sense of being alive in an otherwise empty and fleeting day to day reality. Then there was the suicide attempts, numerous trips to emergency rooms, rehabs and psych wards, all of which she took in stride.

As I went to sleep in my friends cozy guest bed, I reflected on those dark times and how truly transformative the following technique taught by Thich Nhat Hanh has been in turning my life around. I also thought that since it’s worked so well for me, it may work well for you too.

It’s extremely simple and can be done anytime, anywhere and in virtually any circumstance.

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766 Hits

A Brief Meditation: Gathering and Arriving in Presence (3:34 min.)

flowerr A Brief Meditation: Gathering and Arriving in Presence (3:34 min.)

A brief meditation to gather the attention, loosen and soften the body, sense your intention for being here, and feel the quality of presence of an awakening heart.

I invite you to sense what it means to you to arrive into presence.
You may take a few long deep breaths.
Just feel the movement of the breath collecting your attention.
And letting the breath resume in a natural rhythm.

Let your senses be awake so you’re listening to the sounds around you.
Listening inward so that you’re listening to and feeling the body.
As you do, you might notice the places in you that might want to let go a little bit right now.
Maybe there can be some loosening and softening in the shoulders?
Maybe you can soften your hands?
Relax down through the belly?
You can feel the breath deep in the torso.
Become aware of sensations throughout your body.
Listening to and feeling the whole moment.

Gently bringing your attention to the area around the heart.
So you can feel the heart, whatever mood is here,
And also listening inwardly for whatever longing…

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349 Hits

How to Create a Life Changing Mantra

How to Create a Life Changing Mantra How to Create a Life Changing Mantra

Mantras are honored in a vast variety of spiritual practices and traditions, through many centuries. They elevate daily lives, and have an important place in both mindful and intentional living. Mantras are also one of the main ingredients in successful manifestation. They can be words, sounds or even repetitive actions.

Many people experience life without recognizing their personal power.  The words and thoughts we repeatedly tell ourselves are basically mantras that are void of sacred energy and intent. I invite you to take charge of your life by using intentional mantras. Follow these simple steps and get ready to celebrate your dreams:

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958 Hits

Vodka, Cops & the Bhagavad Gita.

closeup-of-a-buddha-statue-picture-id143174943 Vodka, Cops & the Bhagavad Gita.

“The Edge…there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over.”

~ Hunter S. Thompson

As I sat in meditation recently, I had one of those experiences. It’s something I’ve learned to laugh at now, the absolute ridiculousness of it in a very Bukowski sort of way, but there’s of course a small part of my stomach that still knots up when memories like these rear their ugly heads.

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420 Hits

Are you looking for peace in an uncertain world?

peacedoves Are you looking for peace in an uncertain world?

Did you know that forgiveness, peace, love and joy are inextricably linked?

It is only when we’ve experienced true inner peace that we understand there is another world that exists beyond the ego mind’s comprehension.

It’s an awesome world of wonder and the bliss of pure love. Sounds good, doesn’t it?

Imagine waking up tomorrow morning… your to do list is full… family is on the way…

The demands of life just keep coming…

and you…

you are completely at peace.

How good would that feel?

As we enter the holiday season, peace is often the gift we most desire. 

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812 Hits

The Paradox of Planning for the Future

futureclock The Paradox of Planning for the Future

When you initially arrive into a new situation, the optimum strategy for dealing with that situation is to quiet down and hear the totality of what’s going on around you. To hear all of the variables and how they are all working together, just in a quiet intuitive way, out of which will come an optimum action. That is, the more fully you are present in that moment of decision making, the more you can expect an optimum response. Optimum in the sense of it being in the deepest harmony on the most planes of reality.


The best practice for being fully present at that moment of choice is to practice being present in this moment.

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1072 Hits

The Butterfly Effect

butterflyeffect The Butterfly Effect

The art of becoming is accomplished through an act of rebirth. As you continue to evolve as a spiritual creation that is constantly seeking growth and a heightened sense of awareness, the ability to navigate the process of rebirth becomes vitally essential.

I am so grateful to discuss rebirth and how the evolution of a butterfly’s journey from caterpillar to cocoon to gaining its wings to flying can provide important key aspects to our own journey as we manifest the life we want to live! I want to start with a quote from the great Maya Angelou…It reads,

“We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.”


Let’s think about that for a minute. How do you feel about this statement? Can anybody relate? You know you are destined to soar yet you have been just crawling along not realizing nor expressing your full potential. Don’t get me wrong…the caterpillar stage is fine and is important. And I don’t want to negate the importance of the caterpillar experience. You can have joy here. You can have success, happiness, abundance, and love. I am sure if you ask the caterpillar, they are happy moving along eating leaves. I mean what do caterpillars eat anyway? I mean I don’t even know... but and it’s a huge BUT…if you are longing for more or you know there is a greater something that is seeking to be born, in your heart of hearts, you know you have more to give this world then it’s time to be brave and enter into your cocoon phase. You willing enter because you know it’s time. You begin to trust in the magic of rebirth. Maybe you have even had visions of flying and landing on flowers. You can even see what colors your wings are. Have you had that experience? You know where you been, you know where you are right now, and you have seen the vision for the future. The vision is in 3-D Pixar color and it’s clear. You want it. I often say…I want that.


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578 Hits

6 Mindfulness Practices from Around the World

6 Mindfulness Practices from Around the World 6 Mindfulness Practices from Around the World
Many cultures around the world have deep traditions of mindfulness practices. Learn how mindfulness is practiced all around the world.

If you look at any culture throughout history, you’ll find that their traditions include some form of meditation or mindfulness practice.

Christians and Muslims pray. Catholics recite rosaries. Buddhists meditate. People in India practice yoga. Native Americans perform sweat lodges…

…and so on.

So why do so many different societies evolve some sort of practice dedicated to helping people clear their minds, and access deeper levels of awareness and consciousness?

It’s because the wisest people in every culture understand the same profound truth: that the quality of our thoughts create the quality of our reality.

So if you want to experience a more peaceful, joyful and fulfilling reality, you must learn to raise your consciousness and access a higher level of thoughts.

But not all mindfulness practices are tied to religion or take the form of prayer or meditation.

Today I’d like to share some of the other interesting ways people around the world cultivate mindfulness to maximize their happiness and fulfillment in life.

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481 Hits

Finding Balance Between Mind and Heart on the Path to Liberation

flowerbuddha Finding Balance Between Mind and Heart on the Path to Liberation

There are many tools that all serve the process of awakening or liberation, and when you listen inward you can feel – or situations present themselves to show you that your energies are out of whack, or that your heart is too closed off.

Your mind can be full of high wisdom, but that’s in your head. There are times when I listen to somebody, and I can hear with my body. I hear in a certain way in which I’ll feel pressure in my head, or I’ll feel tightness in my chest.


There are two theories about how you do this: One is that you go for broke with whatever you do. For example, if you focus on quieting the mind, and the mind gets quiet enough, at the latest stages the heart will automatically aline and the energies will aline. The first strategy is to find your method and just keep doing it, and wait for the others to all fall into place behind it. There will be tremendous imbalance until very late in the game. The other is where you keep correcting the inner process along the way. I don’t really know that one is better than the other – you have to intuit which way to go.

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488 Hits

Finding Faith When You’re Freaking Out: You Couldn’t Be More Loved

keepingfaith Finding Faith When You’re Freaking Out: You Couldn’t Be More Loved

When it comes to creating the work you love, it's all about learning to cultivate faith. I'd say having faith in your journey is more important than brushing your teeth. Then again, I do much of my work on the phone. "But how do I have faith when things don't work out?" my clients ask. "Where does Spirit go, when I'm freaking out?" I have a gazillion answers. But this month I want to tell you about a miracle I had years ago. I'm hoping it will nourish you and help you become the unstoppable agent of love that you are meant to be.

Years ago, I facilitated a workshop at a women's retreat held at an eco-resort in the breathtaking Mayan Riviera, in Mexico. I remember the moment I arrived. I stared at this remote beach of glittering aqua blue water and untouched white sand. I began to cry. The beauty stung me. It rattled me and stilled me. My travel sweat evaporated. I felt naked and robed at the same time, emptied and filled. And most of all, I felt very, very loved. I felt loved in that moment, loved in the past, and loved for all time—because that’s the nature of real love.

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423 Hits