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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A New World Needs a New Worldview

protecting-world-from-coronavirus-covid-19-novel-corona-outbreak-picture-id1212579812 A New World Needs a New Worldview

It is very rare that human beings have a chance to rethink our place in Nature. The modern world is the fruit of a worldview that has placed Homo sapiens reigning supreme over all other life forms.  This worldview seems only right and proper to the vast majority of people. In the course of just a few weeks, however, over seven billion people’s lives changed for the worse.  Economies were halted, global transportation and supply chains were shut down to a crawl, and hundreds of millions of jobs were lost. More money has been lost globally than in any other moment in history. Amid the shock and panic, the catastrophe of COVID-19 has prompted some radical rethinking. Can a new and better world emerge? Not unless our worldview changes, because in many ways the virus isn’t a mindless primitive life form ravaging us, “the most superior life form on the planet”. Nor did Nature strike back to punish us. Something deeper is going on. To see what it is, we need to consider a worldview based not on humans-as-supreme, but on life-as-supreme.

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A Guided Meditation for Happiness

meditatingmountain A Guided Meditation for Happiness

With all of the anger, strife, and anxiety in the world today, it can be difficult to find the joy in life, but that is where meditation for happiness can help.

With so much suffering and conflict, sometimes it might seem like the world has no joy to offer.

You might ask yourself, “How can we be happy when others have it so bad?”

Other times, we’re so focused on the negative things that are happening in our own lives, the challenges we’re dealing with, and the potential catastrophes that could arise at any moment, that we simply block our capacity to feel joy. 

But joy is what gives your life sweetness and meaning. If you want to fulfill your destiny and become your best version of yourself, it is imperative that you take the time to cultivate your joy.

So today I’d like to share a simple meditation that you can use at any time to create the experience of more joy in your life.

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Where All Souls Meet

dawid-zawila--G3rw6Y02D0-unsplash Where All Souls Meet

After being born physically, we unfold within a second womb, meant to incubate our better angel. The second womb is an experiential one that, through the labor of a lifetime, births the soul on Earth. This journey opens us to a process of transformation that is mysterious, difficult, and inevitable. This dynamic transformation is how we are revealed and shaped by experience. By living the one life we are given, we release the wisdom that waits in our heart, and that tender, human process leads us to the way under the way, the place of true meeting. When we commit to these holy engagements that join who we are with the world, we discover that the temple is the world.

Eventually, all the love, suffering, and humility we go through wear away our walls of resistance until Spirit shines from within us like an inner sun. This is how Spirit is revealed on Earth—as the coverings we carry are worn away by life, the light we carry can pour into the world.

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183 Hits

Love the World

saveearth Love the World

Are we really so separate?

The Practice:
Love the world.

Why?

To simplify and summarize, our brain has three primary motivational systems – Avoiding harms, Approaching rewards, and Attaching to “us” – that draw on many neural networks to accomplish their goals. 

Lately, I’ve started to realize that a fourth fundamental human motivational system could be emerging as well.

Our hunter-gatherer ancestors depended upon their habitats for food and shelter. Today, over 7 billion of us are pressing hard up against the limits of Lifeboat Earth. To survive and to flourish, cultural and perhaps biological evolution are calling us to love the world.

The world is near to hand in the food you eat, the air you breathe, and the weather and climate in which you spend your days. And then in widening circles, the world extends out to include complex webs of life and the physical characteristics of the land, the sea, and the sky.

When you love the world, you both appreciate it and care for it. Each of these actions makes you feel good, plus they help you preserve and improve everything you depend on for your health, livelihood, security, pleasure, and community.

During most of the last several million years, our human and hominid ancestors did not have much capacity for harming the world. Nor did they have much understanding of their effects on the whole planet.

But now, humanity has great power for good and ill. And we have inescapable knowledge (no matter how much some try to deny it) of what we are doing to our own home. As the earth heats up, as many species go extinct, and as resources such as fresh water decline, it is critically important that a fourth major motivation guide our thoughts, words, and above all, deeds:

Love the world.

How To Deal With Fear

How To Deal With Fear How To Deal With Fear

We are going through some intense times right now in the world.

Many of us are worried about our safety and how we take care of ourselves and those we love.

I believe that we will get through this together, and we can get through these times stronger.

In dealing with COVID-19, it is important to be smart, discerning and intentional in doing our part to ensure we take care of ourselves and those around us, our loved ones, our elderly and our children.

It is important that we focus on what we can control, not on what we cannot. This will only create more fear and panic. We can take responsibility for building up our immune system with rest, sleep, hydration, supplements (i.e: Vitamin C, echinacea, ginger, turmeric, oregano oil, etc.).

What you focus on expands.

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How to Stop the Fear Virus

concerned How to Stop the Fear Virus

I’m sure you’ve noticed no matter where you live in the world that a great big inconvenient and temporary change is upon us. Certainty is a scarcity and everything is swirling in a vortex of unpredictability. 

We’ve all become susceptible to a virus … but not just the one in the news. Sure we all know about that one and there is tons of good information—a mix of medical and common sense about how to deal with Coronavirus (COVID-19). But what about the Other Virus? 

Think about it. COVID-19 is not just a medical emergency affecting our bodies. It’s a symbol of something deeper. The more powerful other virus I’m talking about is a thought virus that didn’t come from a foreign country. It rises up through our primitive fear and panic and takes its shape in separation, expresses in fear and hatred of the “other”, and conjures nightmares of scarcity. 

This thought virus causes more damage than the one that spawned it. 

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A Theory of Love

love-in-the-air-picture-id620384420 A Theory of Love

A few years ago I came upon the letter below that was supposedly authored by Albert Einstein written to his daughter Liesel about love. I have since discovered that Einstein did not write this and the original author is still unknown. That said, when I re-read it again, I was still moved by the wisdom, poetry, and truth it contains and thought you might enjoy it as well.

“When I proposed the theory of relativity, very few understood me, and what I will reveal now to transmit to mankind will also collide with the misunderstanding and prejudice in the world.

I ask you to guard the letters as long as necessary, years, decades, until society is advanced enough to accept what I will explain below.

There is an extremely powerful force that, so far, science has not found a formal explanation to. It is a force that includes and governs all others and is even behind any phenomenon operating in the universe and has not yet been identified by us.

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A Brave New World, and How to Get There

newworld

If you find yourself living in a troubled world, what should you do? The question is as old as recorded history, but over the millennia only three basic answers have emerged. If you find yourself living in a troubled world, you should A. Turn to God or the gods, B. Place your trust in science and rational thought, or C. Renounce the world and retreat inward.

These answers have practical outcomes, which is why we have cathedrals, space programs, and monasteries. But what if none of the three time-honored answers works anymore? That’s the general situation most modern people find themselves in, and so they retain a diluted loyalty to old answers in the absence of a better one.  For example, most Americans do not believe the creation story in the Book of Genesis, but neither do they completely believe Darwinism, telling pollsters that in some undefined way God enters into evolution despite the view among evolutionary scientists that Darwin’s theory is completely valid.

The third option, retreating from the world, is actually the one most of us have chosen more or less automatically. We lament the state of the world but spend every day occupied with our personal affairs. If you do nothing to improve the world, you are for all intents and purposes reliant on your own thoughts and actions. A higher authority or proven worldview is irrelevant.

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When the World Stops Working, We Will Know the Truth

cosmos When the World Stops Working, We Will Know the Truth

Everyone looks at the world, and their lives, assuming that they know the truth. This isn’t truth with a capital T but simply the truth about everyday things, like how to drive a car, buy groceries, and do one’s job. We know other basic things that are true, such as when we are awake as opposed to being asleep. In other words, the world works, more or less to our satisfaction.

Somewhere beyond everyday affairs there are experts, professionals, and thinkers who deal in deeper truths, still not with a capital T but getting closer. Scientists especially are trusted to give us the truth about Nature from the most microscopic regions of quanta to the most cosmic regions, where quasars and black holes exist. We trust that if the everyday world is working, science must have a handle on why it works, operating from its deeper perspective.

So it comes as something of a shock, even though it doesn’t touch us personally, that the scientific view of the world is so wobbly that it is on the verge of becoming either untrue or obsolete or both. At the farthest edges of exploration, the basic elements of physics—space, time, matter, and energy—vanish, either because they disappear into a black hole or because the scale of measurement reaches the limit, known as the Planck scale, where there is no way to calculate anything. At the same time there is the whole issue of dark matter and energy, which are barely known and may not be knowable by the human mind, since our brains are set up for regular matter and energy.

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264 Hits

How to Tap into the Strength of Your Truth

strengthofyourtruth How to Tap into the Strength of Your Truth

My writing has been described as lyrical or even whimsical.  I know my words as truth; they carry an awareness of a kinder and compassionate world.

We are living in a time that allows our actions and reactions to be far reaching into our world.  Humanity has documented challenges and successes of our planet throughout the ages.  Our ability to be aware of current situations across the oceans has gifted us a unique knowledge and challenge. The media is sharing terrifying footage of fires, wars, and other devastating events that are portrayed as out of control.  It might appear like humanity is being brought to our collective knees….

I choose to look at this moment in history as an opportunity to gain a higher perspective of our options.  We can unite, bring light, and vibrancy to the areas where fear has trapped us.  To achieve this, we need to look deeper into every image.  For example, we see animals fleeing the fires in Australia.  This has triggered emotions for many of us.  Seeing the animals loosing lives to an out of control fire stirs up grief, fear and sadness.

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711 Hits

Love the World

love_the_world Love the World

Are we really so separate?

The Practice:
Love the world.

Why?

To simplify and summarize, our brain has three primary motivational systems – Avoiding harms, Approaching rewards, and Attaching to “us” – that draw on many neural networks to accomplish their goals. 

Lately, I’ve started to realize that a fourth fundamental human motivational system could be emerging as well.

Our hunter-gatherer ancestors depended upon their habitats for food and shelter. Today, over 7 billion of us are pressing hard up against the limits of Lifeboat Earth. To survive and to flourish, cultural and perhaps biological evolution are calling us to love the world.

The world is near to hand in the food you eat, the air you breathe, and the weather and climate in which you spend your days. And then in widening circles, the world extends out to include complex webs of life and the physical characteristics of the land, the sea, and the sky.

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317 Hits

Three Extraordinary Ideas to Help You Realize Lasting Freedom

sunlitforest Three Extraordinary Ideas to Help You Realize Lasting Freedom

In those silent, but magnificent moments of life––where we are suddenly given a glimpse of something so beautiful that it quiets the mind––we know that we stand in the presence of something that represents a new and higher order of ourselves. What we've yet to understand about these fleeting experiences is that they are an invitation to become fully conscious of these timeless and vital forces as a living part of who and what we are in reality. In such moments we know, without having to think about it, that as beautiful as the world around us may be, it pales in comparison to the world that awaits us within us. Let's illustrate this last idea.

If you've ever taken a walk through a deep wood on the sunlit day and stood in the silent shafts of light streaming down and through the trees, then you know, even though these bright beams seem to appear randomly and separately, each ray of light comes from a common source: the sun. The same holds true with these beautiful timeless qualities that sometimes streak into and through our hearts and minds. These celestial characteristics are the too-fleeting expression of our own yet to be realized True Self. But if this is true, which it is, what is it that keeps us from permanently entering into this extraordinary life? As you’ll see, the answer is surprising!

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A New, Improved Reality Depends on You

reality A New, Improved Reality Depends on You

How do we know that anything is real? This isn’t a question that usually bothers most people, because we’ve all been brought up to look upon the physical world “out there” as a given. But let’s say that someone actually asks you the question, “How do you know the physical world is real?” What would you answer?

If you pause for a second, there are only two kinds of answers to this question: Either you tell a story or you refer to your own experience. Stories used to be collective myths, generally based on religion, about how God or the gods created the world. But any story, including the most advanced scientific models, depends on belief. If you believe in the Book of Genesis, you will see reality very differently from someone who believes in the Big Bang. To sort out which story is actually true, the second kind of answer arose, defining reality according to our experience. A rock is hard because two people who kick it agree from their experience that it is, in fact, hard.

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Don’t Take it Personally: The Protective Personality

unhappy-woman-looking-through-the-window-picture-id806822594 Don’t Take it Personally: The Protective Personality

There are more than seven billion people living on this planet which means more than seven billion personalities, opinions and ways of seeing the world. With so many diverse and varying ideologies and socio-cultural milieus, someone is bound to act in a way, or say something that upsets another.

The question is: Do we always have to take everything so personally? If not, how do we make what seems personal, impersonal?

Ego: Why We Take Things Personally
From the time we are young, usually before we’re even ten years old, situations or moments in life occur where we feel unsafe or insecure, or someone says something that makes us feel unlovable. When this happens, we begin to develop a second self, or a false self. That false self is often the “ego,” which I like to call the “protective personality” because no one likes to have an ego, but people don’t seem to mind having a “protective personality.”

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What’s the Matter with Matter?

cartoon-humpty-dumpty-vector-id119141760 What’s the Matter with Matter?

If someone invited you to live in a world where every physical thing—granite, stars, trees, the bones in your body—lost their thingness, would you accept? The fact that things exist is very reassuring, so reassuring that we can hardly do without it. Unfortunately, this reassurance is false. We live in a world where things aren’t really things, whether we choose to or not.

Matter, the physical side of matter and energy, is one half of a duo act. We are told matter is what the universe is made of, and energy is what puts matter in motion. The dance between them constitutes the reality we inhabit, a fact so obvious that modern science relies upon it as the unquestioned basis for doing science, not to mention for leading our everyday lives.

If matter and energy are not what they seem, science could be rocked to its core—but great care is taken for this not to happen. Strangely, a nursery rhyme tells the tale. Like Humpty-Dumpty in the English nursery rhyme, physical matter—solid, tangible inert matter composed of atoms and molecules- took a great fall over a hundred year ago, when quantum mechanics demolished every one of those qualities. It is entirely inaccurate to envision the universe being built up from bits of solid matter—or bits of anything.

The ancient Greek notion that reality can be reduced to a minuscule speck of matter (the atom) was a delusion of logic, and therefore a mental construct only. In reality the elementary particles that comprise the atom have a mysterious existence. They have no measurable weight, position, or any other characteristic until they are observed. Before that, they exist as waves that extend infinitely in all directions. These waves have no properties you can assign to any solid object. They arise as ripples in the quantum field, and the entire structure of the universe is mathematically described as interference patterns among these ripples, like the pattern formed on the surface of a pond if you throw two rocks in at the same time.

The dissolution of physical matter isn’t controversial—quantum mechanics is the bedrock of modern physics--but it turned out to be intolerable for working scientists. They rely upon the reassuring nature of thingness just as much as ordinary people. Theoretically, doing away with thingness should have been the end of the story. As every child knows, all the king’s horses and all the king’s men couldn’t put Humpty-Dumpty together again. Physics, however, managed to do something more mysterious. It ignored that matter fell and broke in the first place.

The billions of dollars spent on high-energy particle accelerators shows the lengths to which jobs, budgets, and complex projects rest on an ability to ignore what quantum physics actually means. There are now eighteen basic particles, with the hope that more will be discovered in the future, dependent on building even more mega-accelerators. But when these vast machines cause a new particle to bounce out of the quantum field for a fraction of a millisecond, using huge amounts of energy to accomplish this, where is that particle really coming from?

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Start Being The Light Of The World

light of the world Start Being The Light Of The World

Every journey of genuine self-discovery, and the subsequent changes this process produces in us, must begin somewhere. We begin our journey with a great but unrealized truth: within each of us resides a power that can change the whole world. It’s true; we each have a secret character hidden away in us that is created for just the alchemical purpose of transforming any dark influence into a beneficial force. And yet, as appealing as the idea of such a power may sound to us, to take conscious possession of its strength is not that simple.

Becoming an instrument of this higher power takes more than merely wishing for its entrance into our life. To realize such a viable wisdom requires action in the Now. So let us be clear: we are created with everything that we need to transform and transcend the shadows of fear, regrets, and resentments that prowl the corridors of our sleeping consciousness. And when these secret seeds of conflict have been revealed and released, we are as well, for then nothing negative remains within us to goad us into acting against ourselves. Multiply this possibility by billions of beings and gone are the mindless wars and all the selfish acts of socially accepted gluttony.

Perhaps you are wondering, what is this great power entrusted to us by which we may overcome all of our interior adversaries? Here is the answer:

Each of us is created to be the Light of the world.

Within each of us resides a nascent Light born into this world with us. We can think of this as being the Light of higher conscience by whose compassionate intelligence we are empowered to discern what is helpful from what is harmful, to intuitively know the difference between a genuine act of kindness and a kindness done for selfish reasons. By this Light we are able to tell what is true and what is false. When we do our part to live in the awareness of this Light so that its presence becomes an active power within us, then what is there that can remain with the power to hurt us? How can any unseen darkness prevail if its character is revealed before it begins its punishing action? Just think of such a power and the freedoms it must bear.


 

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Seek to see the world through the eyes of God

Seek to see the world through the eyes of God Seek to see the world through the eyes of God

The world is made up of perceptions

It has been stated that the world is made up of perceptions. Perceptions, points of view, beliefs and opinions. In other words, we see the world as we consciously or unconsciously seek to see the world. For an individual who looks at the world as being a hostile and unfriendly place – they will come to see the world as just that. For another individual who looks for Love, joy, generosity, abundance and wholeness in the world – that is the world they will come to see. As an awakening individual we want seek to see the world through the eyes of God. We want to activate our Right seeing – which is seeing beyond circumstances, appearances and effects.

There is nothing but Divine order in all of the cosmos. This means that nothing just happens but everything happens just. Whatever it is we are seeking to find, is what we will find. Whatever it is we are looking for, we will see. Regardless of whether we are looking consciously or unconsciously.

The world is made up by our chronic perceptions, beliefs and conversations.

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Letting Go of What No Longer Serves You

butterflyspring Letting Go of What No Longer Serves You
Spring is a time of renewal in nature. As the cold retreats, it leaves behind the detritus of winter.

All the junk that collected under the snow and the now-sodden leaves from last fall makes the outside world look like it needs a good washing. Now, think of a spring rain. As it falls, it carries away the dirt and the grit and the grime. It leaves behind a clean slate that’s ready for the fresh greens of spring.

The custom of spring cleaning is an imitation of nature’s seasonal house cleaning. The weather is finally warm enough to throw open the windows. The sunlight and the fresh air remind us that now is the time to get rid of all of our own dirt and junk that has accumulated during the cold and dark of winter.

In my house, that’s a lot of junk. You can’t believe the stuff that accumulates with four little ones. Developmental toys, parts and pieces of games, board books, broken crayons, markers long-since dried out. Baby blankets, soft toys, dolls, and piles of stuffed animals that somehow keep getting bigger. Then there are the piles of outgrown clothing, shoes, and accessories. (Please tell me, how did the time go by so quickly?) When it comes to this stuff, there isn’t a stage that I don’t adore. Newborn, 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, one year. I swear, by now I’m capable of starting my own Salvation Army Surplus Store.

I admit it, I’m a collector. I’m also unabashedly sentimental. I have a penchant to pack away everything in order to save it from the dumpster, the recycling center, and the second-hand store. In the wee hours of the night, I’ll gently unpack a box of old baby clothes, hold them to my heart, and reminisce about the old days. And then the tears are unleashed. My husband always says that if we lived in a smaller house, I could qualify as a true hoarder. He says it with love, but if I’m honest about my “collecting” tendency, it might be more than a little true. I think saving stuff is my way of trying to stop time from stealing away the present and turning it into the past.
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1276 Hits

How to Be Good - A Very Tough Problem

How to Be Good - A Very Tough Problem

At the turn of a new year it’s natural to be reflective about the state of the world, a gloomy process this year. The world is filled with bad actors, who are easy to condemn. But complaining about them does us very little good, while a great deal of good can be done by flipping the coin and asking what it takes to be good.

 

To have a grounded sense of self, it’s necessary to feel that you are a good person. People who consider themselves bad are generally defeated and abused, wracked with guilt and shame. So where does goodness come from? This turns out to be one of the toughest problems tackled by religion, philosophy, and now science. Finding a scientific way to make people act morally is a long-standing dream going back at least two centuries when Utilitarians tried to base morality on a calculus of pleasure and pain. The notion that making goodness a pleasant experience seemed fruitful, especially combined with painful punishments when someone disobeys the moral rules.

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What I Learned During My Spiritual Break

What I Learned During My Spiritual Break

I’m writing this as I would write a note to a friend who I haven’t spoken to in awhile. I’m back from my self-imposed spiritual break and wanted to check in. How are you? How is your world? How are you feeling on this day about our larger world?

I know I don’t have to ask that question of Mother Earth. She feels as angry as she’s ever been. But, I hope those living directly in her path feel supported by the outpouring of love, unity and assistance that is coming their way.

At a time like this, it almost feels mundane for me to talk about my time away this past month. But, The Sunday Paper is dedicated to trying to provide a sanctuary and a moment of reprieve from the storms that surround us — be they climate-related, political, or otherwise. So, if you don’t mind, I’ll bring you up to date on my last few weeks.

My time away in August was wonderful and productive. Before I left, I wrote down a list of intentions for my break. I wanted to step back from the noise of our world so that I could reflect, reconnect and approach my life and work with a renewed sense of passion and purpose.

There were so many times along the way that I wanted to jump back into the world of social media to comment on this or that (North Korea, Charlottesville, Heather Heyer and her inspiring mom, Houston and Hurricane Harvey, etc…) So many times that I wanted to drive my car back into the office so that I could feel plugged in, connected and purposeful. But, I didn’t.

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30 Simple Ways to Create Balance and Connection

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