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Hello, I'm Dan Om. A spiritual companion in cooperation with Life's spiritual Awakening. Together we discover freedom from suffering. We may have experienced depression, anxiety, complex-ptsd, dysfunctional family systems, shame, trauma and existential crisis yet we come to realize That which never suffers and the Unconditional Love we are. I love learning with you as Awakening unfolds.
Life Coaching
Cognitive Psychology
Personal Development Coaching
Spiritual Healing
About DAN OM

Hello, I'm Dan Om.
A spiritual companion in cooperation with Life's spiritual Awakening. Together we discover freedom from suffering. We may have experienced depression, anxiety, complex-ptsd, dysfunctional family systems, shame, trauma and existential crisis yet we come to realize That which never suffers and the Unconditional Love we are.

I love learning with you as Awakening unfolds.

6 years of practice
On Core Spirit since September 2021
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"Difficult People" as Egoic Reflections can Bring Us to Freedom

This physical human experience within its dimension of duality is both phenomenal and weird.
The spiritual Awakening process is not easy and the perceptual shifts ego-mind goes through is nothing short
of amazing. It’s wild, it’s wondrous, it’s confusing. The ego-mind is based on an either-or orientation and it can only see either this or that. It cannot hold both without rejecting one or the other. The expanded perception
of Awareness is oriented towards both-and. It can hold seemingly opposing views without rejecting either, because it can see through both. Awareness recognizes the validity of both on differing “levels” and arranges
an integration point for handling situations in the physical dimension.

We experience clear moments of Awareness each day. Imagine seeing a child wearing a SuperHero mask, running at full-tilt with out-stretched arms through the house. The adult mind sees the child’s mind is absorbed
by imagination, he believes he’s “flying” because he is a SuperHero who can fly. When the child says he’s wearing his “invisibility cloak”, the adult sees the blue and purple beach towel knotted around the child’s shoulders and understands. The adult may even play along. “I wonder where Timmy is, I could have sworn I heard him
fly into the kitchen, but I don’t see him. Where did he go? Oh, well, I guess he’s flown away.”

This is Awareness, able to “hold”* both* imagination and fact, which don’t “match” in this moment.
The adult can hold both the flying, invisible SuperHero and the child wearing a mask and a beach towel without needing to prove one is factually valid and the other to be imaginative.

As we spiritually awaken, perception expands to include seeing through even more of the human dream.
That which was previously believed to be “factual” is realized to be part of creative mind’s imaginative play
or illusion. We may have heard it said that “others” are “us”, we are One. When perception is limited to duality, this causes confusion. “But there are 2 bodies, not one. There are 2 minds, not one. Their feelings and thoughts are not my feelings and thoughts. This is crazy.” The egoic mind can only see duality, a “me” and a “him/her/them”.

Awareness, which enters this physical dimension from the Transcendental, sees the Oneness
of Beingness. That essence of consciousness which is beyond all objects in form: bodies, thoughts, emotion. This common essence or Consciousness beyond the human experience is that point of Oneness.

Ego-mind is described as unconsciousness, sleep, being lost in the dream or illusion.
Awareness is described as being awake, Conscious Consciousness, seeing through the illusion or dream.
During spiritual Awakening perception will open to reveal not only moments of recognition of the dual state
and the state of Oneness, but there will arise a point of integration. This is both-and state of mind, where the human dream and That Beyond overlap in gentle harmony. One can see their egoic-personality “me”,
their essence of Beingness which is One and their form-identity of thought-emotion stream plus a physical body, simultaneously.

How is this expansion helpful in everyday human life? Seeing through Awareness rather than seeing
only through the ego-mind’s duality is a return to our inherently natural state of Freedom, Wonder, Peace and Joy. The dual state of ego-mind is the viewpoint of suffering which is a limited experience of the Truth of Who We Are. It’s not bad nor wrong, it’s just limited. Like wearing clothes we’ve outgrown, it pinches, binds, chafes,
is uncomfortable and even hurts.

As perception expands, we better understand cause/effect and we recognize functional human behavior
and dysfunctional human behavior within a world of duality. When we “look” through the dual perspective,
we understand which behaviors result in positive outcomes and difficult consequences within the context
of cause/effect. We’re also able to “transcend” the dual perspective and view Life through the Transcendental perspective of neutrality. The Free mind sees only benevolence and can “hold” the viewpoint of unpleasant or difficult consequence without reactivity. This is Freedom from the attachment and identification with ego-mind
while still seeing the ego-mind dance its dance.

While the Transcendental is moving to expand dual perception during Awakening, we can practice, use certain tools to help our adjustment. When we learned to swim, we might have started out using “floaties” or a life jacket to increase our buoyancy and decrease our drag until our muscle became stronger. This tool of owning ego’s projection and reflections is one such aid.

When we see “other” and become frustrated, ego-mind is firing negative thoughts about “their” conditioned behavior. Ego-mind is doing what it does best, projecting the upset caused by its thoughts “outside”. It overlays its perspective onto “other” and becomes upset. This is not to say the “other’s” behavior may not be an expression of unconscious conditioning in some way; the “upset” about it or the interpretation, is ego-mind’s perspective, believed thoughts, alone. As the spiritual teacher Byron Katie says, “This is earth school; this is where we learn cause/effect.” Our negative experience of this dimension is the result of ego-mind’s imaginative play in its playground - our out-pictured world.

The next time we notice we’re upset over something someone else has done, we can look to our thoughts.
What thought(s) is mind “attaching to” (believing)? Awareness can see the thoughts generated by mind. We can notice how believing these negative thoughts create a following negative emotion. Awareness can “hold” this negative emotion without being swept up in its momentum. This emotion which feel negative, is centered around “a me”. This is ego-mind’s identification with a “personal sense of self”. The egoic “me” believes “me/I” is separate from “other: him/her/them”.

We can recognize that ego’s attachment and identification are happening. We can recognize the ego
feels separate and fearful. We can watch how ego-mind mounts a defense to protect its “me” identity.
We can watch the ego-mind attack by going “outside” to project blame onto the other:
“He’s lying, she’s not being responsible, they are taking advantage, he’s addicted,
she’s being vindictive, they are being greedy…” Awareness can see unconsciousness.
Awareness can notice conditioned human behavior. Awareness sees actions which create cause/effect
difficulty. There’s nothing wrong nor right about what Awareness sees, this is neutral Wisdom.
This is the understanding of cause/effect as it plays out within the context of human behavior.

What’s often “missed” is the ego’s investment during this process. When the ego believes the “fault” of its upset
is “out there”, this is its error. When the ego believes the unconsciousness is only in “other”, this is another error. The ego is coming from separation, not Oneness. The ego is coming from fear, not Certainty. These errors
of simple confusion tend to override the arising Awareness, not because the ego is strong but because it’s murky.
It’s hard to see clearly with mud in our eyes.

We can address the upset within our own experience by addressing the ego’s believed thoughts and the
emotions they create. “But what about the other person, who’s gonna stop them from doing what they’re doing?!” The ego will continue to “leave it own experience” to obsess “outside” on “other”. If we stay within our business
of our own experience, Life will rebalance what’s needed within Life’s experience. The “other” will experience what’s needed within their own experience. This is cause/effect within the experience of duality. Leaving Life’s business and “their” business alone will allow full focus on freeing ourselves from our own suffering arising within our own business.

“Okay, so I’ve focused on my own business and I’m back to a sense of calm. If ‘I’ saw unconsciousness ‘out there’, as ‘someone else’ aren’t ‘I’ supposed to do something about it? If I just leave someone else’s conditioned behavior alone, won’t it continue? Doesn’t that affect ‘me’ or someone else in some negative way? I’m calm but I still feel like I should ‘do’ something.” This is a beautiful moment. The recognition that change might be necessary is the moment of quantum motion. The ego’s mistake is that the movement of change must be carried out by “other”.

We’ve often heard it said, “Be the change we wish to see in the world.” This is our grandest opportunity, for inner change will reflect outwards in this dual context. The tug that we feel “inside” is where the change wants to manifest. This is why we feel it, within our own experience. Can we truly know the other is supposed to change? Do they feel it? How can we know for sure? If we feel it, this is the where the change is to happen. The dual mind is confusing and we can be guided through it using what we’ve learned about cause/effect,
the staying in our own business and the Transcendental flow of Awareness which can see unconscious conditioned behavior and nothing but mind play happening.

“How can I do this, how do I use the tool of Reflection?”
Imagine the “other person” as a mirror. Use the dual perspective, allow ego mind to believe
the “other” is separate for the moment. This allows and accepts ego without fighting it.
See “him/her/them” as a mirror, not a person. Know ego is projecting this image of him/her/they as it they’re separate. Listen to Awareness point out the unconsciousness conditioned behaviors that are seen:
“His lying; they’re acting vindictively by spreading lies that aren’t factual to influence opinions; throwing a temper tantrum; not paying her bills on time; indulging an active addiction; passive-aggressively showing up late and laughing about in hostility to prove no one has control over them; her bulldozing to get their way by using demands and force instead of making requests and letting go of expectations; his complaining and blaming as a means to fluff up ego instead of taking assertive, empowered action…etc.”

Now take a deep breath and “own” the ego’s projection that it is attempting to lay onto the
“other person.” Gulp! This is going to be very hard and it’s going to take maximal openness
and courage. This is inner work, this is looking the ego in the eyes without flinching.
This is bringing the ego’s denial to its knees. We are fully capable because Awareness is Here.
When Awareness is seeing through ego, there is no blame, no shame, no punishment,
no contempt, no guilt. There is complete acceptance, allowance and neutrality.
There is innocence, just an oops of misunderstanding, not intentional, not personal, not at fault.

The ego will react and react with the full force of negative attack and defense.
“But I don’t do that! I don’t lie, I’m not vindictive, I don’t gossip, I don’t try to manipulate opinions, I don’t throw temper tantrums, I pay my bills on time, I don’t indulge addiction, I don’t show up late, I don’t bulldoze, I don’t complain and blame!...” Let the ego voice its reactivity without acting it out. Let it silently rage, blow its top, scream, defend, deny, avoid, attempt to prove it’s right. Like every outburst, it will eventually subside.
Awareness is not threatened. Awareness cannot be harmed. Just wait the ego out.
The Wisdom from the depth of our Beingness will arise to meet the ego in a welcoming embrace
because it recognizes the ego’s pure innocence of misunderstanding.

This is not denial of any behavior of “other”, this is the world of duality. This is intense focus on ‘here,
this experience, not the experience of ‘other’.” This owns ego’s projection. This is the ultimate ownership
of all responsibility and accountability for inner experience. This deflates and collapses ego’s ability
to “go outside”, to project responsibility for inner experience where it doesn’t exist.

Now we can use the world of duality to learn cause/effect from the reflection of unconsciousness which seems
to be in “other”. We can spot the reflection in “other” of “ego-here”. Where, in this experience of egoic conditioning, arising within, can I find even 1% of that conditioned behavior? If not in behavior, can I find it in the mind as egoic thought? If I’ve not spread gossip, have I had a negative thought about someone in my mind as a thought? Did that thought in my mind, once I believed it, spread to other negative thoughts in my mind about that person? This is a type of “mental gossip” not so unlike the physical gossip “they” did. Can I own that outer reflection within this experience here? This is where the change happens. No blame,
no guilt, no shame, just recognition.

Our Freedom is at stake and we deserve our Divine Inheritance of the ego-less state.
Each egoic strand of conditioning recognized is another layer of Freedom from the limitation created by ego.

If I’ve paid my bills on time, where have I not done something “on time”? If I don’t complain and blame out loud like so-so does, are there complaining thoughts in my mind? Just that tiny % is unconsciousness and it has its cause/effect within our own experience. This is where our work begins, with clear seeing. We might find it’s not so easy to turn that conditioning around “on a dime” as we may have expected “another” to be able to do it with a snap of our fingers. It’s humbling yet it’s Freeing.

“What if I go through all of this and something still needs to be done to address a situation?”
Only after going through this can the “something to be done” be carried out with the power of unconditional love. This is appropriate or “right” action. This action will be infused with Goodwill and it will be carried out in peace even if the answer is “no”. Peace doesn’t mean no-action. Peace means action devoid of war, of negativity; without egoic motive of attack nor defense. When a child reaches for a hot stove and your hand quickly, gently guides the child’s hand away from the stove, this is a type of “no”, coming from unconditional love. There is no slap, there is no anger, there is no berating nor shaming, there is no blame, there is just swift action coming from Goodwill, peace, wellbeing and harmony. When the ego is not driving action, Wise action will manifest. Wise action may be a “yes” or it may be a “no”. Peace can be found in both.

When we reclaim ego’s projections and reflections, our interactions with others improve.
We stay within our business, our actions come from peace, our actions are unconditionally loving,
mind is quiet and calm. We work with duality without being bound by ego’s limitation as a “me” absorbed
in duality. We realize even deeper depths of Freedom from suffering, Freedom from cause/effect.
We become more Aware of the flow of Deepest Wisdom for our recognition is clear and unimpeded
by the restrictions and limitations of ego.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Freeing Ourselves from Ego's Chain of Blame

No one likes to be chained to bitter resentment, hopelessness and powerlessness.
It hurts, it burns, it’s maddening to twist in fury and despair while feeling unable to control
nor change a situation. Ego mind loves the drama as it demands what it thinks it needs,
insisting that a situation be different than what Life is offering right now.

Since we know our Truth is Peace and Unconditional Love, how can this be arising within our experience?
Why can’t we shake it off? Why does this seem to show up in behavior that creates guilt? Where’s the relief,
why does it not make sense, what is going on?

We know we don’t want to feel this way, yet it’s happening. We try to blow it off, we attempt to push this boiling steam onto something “out there”: another person, a situation or event, God, Life, something… has to take the blame. Someone or something “out there” has to be responsible. Does it work?

If it did, all negative feelings would go away, but do they? They cycle, circle and come back with renewed fury. So, we blame, again. Negative feelings return. We’re bound by the chains of blame. The resentment doesn’t
go away, that’s our clue. This doesn’t work, we know it, we feel it but we don’t know a better way to step out
of our own imprisonment.

Relief is close by, closer than we’ve imagined, it’s not “out there”. It’s waiting deep inside us.
We’re not at fault, we’re just misinforme d.We’ve been innocently confused and have misunderstood.
No one can cause our feelings. No situation, no event, no other person, not God, not the Universe, not Life.
This is good news. This means we are not the powerlessness that we feel. A suffering process of bondage is happening and we’ve been asleep on our prison cot. We’re quivering, tossing, turning in a nightmare.
We can awaken from the pain.

Mind is Creation in motion and it generates thought. Sit up and notice. What thoughts are running
through the mind when negative emotions are intense? Write them down, put them to paper as you
catch each one. “They should, he shouldn’t, she shouldn’t have, I must, I can’t, he’d better…, if she wouldn’t…
I should/shouldn’t”. They’re all there, little sour bites of mental confection tumbling down the conveyor belt of the toxic candy factory called ego-mind.

Without a negative thought, where is the negative feeling?

“But…they/he/she caused it!” How can it be? Where is the thought and feeling arising?
In “them/him/her” or within our own experience? Where it’s generated is where it is felt.
This is owning our power. It starts and ends within our experience, nowhere else.

As long as we believe something “outside” has the power, we twist in helplessness.
We cut off our Awareness of Life’s vitality that flows from within us to and through our world.
No wonder we feel helpless, powerless and vulnerable. We’re innocent. Mind is doing what mind does,
it “goes out”, but we are not the mind. We are That which sees the mind, see mind’s thoughts, feels mind’s vibrations in the physical body called feelings. This is the True Power Generator, the Spaciousness
within our Beingness, so much bigger than mind, thought and feeling yet encompassing them all.

We’re ready to recognize the Source of Power and it is not the mind, thought nor feeling.
It’s not a person, a situation nor an event. It is the Awareness which can see mind, thought
and feeling; people, situations and events. This has always been with you and will always be.

“Okay, I caught the thoughts. What do I do with them? The situation’s not changing!”
Leave the situation alone for the moment. Consider, just for a second, that the interpretation offered
by the thoughts is causing the stress, not the situation. “That’s crazy, I know the situation is making me upset.” Watch the negative emotions build, they’re responding to ego-mind’s proof, all of the thoughts which are building momentum. Breathe. Could it be true, just consider for one tiny moment, could it be true this interpretation
of the situation is creating this pain?

Before believing any “answer”, just wait. Sink down into the deepest part you can reach.
Breathe. Wait and trust that your deepest Wisdom will respond to relieve the pain.

Isn’t this why we want the situation to change? We want the Peace that somehow seems to be gone.

Wait for it, listen with every cell of your body, wait for Peace to rise into Awareness.

Breathe, slow down, feel the hot and cool areas within the physical body.

Watch, wait, breathe.

This is the deep dive below the boiling steam to reach the cool inner core.

“But…he/she/they…” Wait, it’s just a bubble, let it pass. “If they’d just…” Wait, let it pass.

Breathe. Feel the heart beating, feel the blood pulsing, find the most open peaceful point deep inside
and hold to it with attentive focus.

Thoughts aren’t personal but they feel very personal. Thoughts are mind, they just come. We don’t do it
on purpose. We can’t help it that thoughts burst upon our scene. We’re innocent. We get swept into the momentum of thoughts so quickly we don’t even know it is happening.

Are we okay, right now? Breathe. Just this moment, is the body supported? Is air flowing through our lungs? Just right now, am I okay? Not later, just right now? This is the Present Moment. Ego-mind’s thoughts take us away from Here. Just for now, sit in the okay-ness of this moment, right now.
In this moment, without the situation having changed…are we okay?

Could thought’s interpretation be creating this stress?
Breathe. Stay with being okay.
No one to blame, nothing to blame, just negative thought creating negative emotion.
It’s just a process called ego-mind and it has no more power than this. It hurts.
Without thought, where is our nightmare?

We’ve stepped out. We’ve stepped into True Power, the okay-ness of the Present Moment arising from within. This Presence is always here, always available, a standing invitation, ready to burst forth as Awareness.

To see interpretation as the cause of stress and pain, rather than the situation, is to allow the Power of our Wisdom to inform Awareness. Now, we’re open. The chain of ego-mind’s momentum of blame is broken.
This sliver of Freedom will grow. Expansion can “step us” beyond the temporary limitation of egoic thought.
It’s natural to want to expand into our full potential, this is Awakening. The Realization of All that we’re created
to Be.

It may occur to us, in the form of a question, what should I do?
Byron Katie describes 3 kinds of business:
*Our business
**His/Her/Their business
***God/Life/The Universe’s business

A mental health counselor, Shawn Eves, describes our business as that which extends from the tip of our nose
to our out-stretched fingertips. This includes the thoughts and feelings which arise in our own experience;
the words we voice, the actions that move through our own physical bodies. That’s it. That’s our business.

Anything else is “his/hers/their” business or the business of God/Life/The Universe.
What she thinks/says is her business. What he does, is his business.
The weather is God/Life/The Universe’s business.
All outside of our business is egoic-thought playing games of interpretation to create stress.

Where are the thoughts going through our minds jumping their fence into another’s business outside of our own? Do we give those thoughts power by believing them? Do we give the power over thought/feeling arising in our own experience to someone else or to a situation or event “outside of” our own experience? This is how vulnerability and helplessness take hold. We’re “outside of ourselves”, lost in thought, this is a vulnerable
place to be. Who’s living our life when we are “over there”?

Come home, back to the inner experience. Back to the place of business where stress is created so we can address it from where it is “born”.

If we drink soured milk from a milk carton, do we yell at the cow that produced the milk in order to get rid of the yukky taste in our mouth? No, we spit out the sour milk. We handle it, where it’s happening, within our own experience.

Negative thoughts, when believed, become sour feelings, no matter the situation, person nor event.
This sour experience is our business. Awareness can show us ego-mind’s attachment
to thought. We can explore the ego’s identification with a “me”, a personal self.
This is the starting point where sour feelings can be resolved.
This is awakening to our True source of power.
We can live free from the ego’s chains of blame.
It starts within, informed by the okay-ness of our own peaceful Presence.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Noticing the Hassle-Maker

There’s a silly little voice in the head that distorts the Beauty of everything.
It can feel like a sour mood that taints our day just as a few drops of soured milk changes the taste of our coffee. This little voice is the Hassle-Maker, the one in the head that says, “I don’t like”, “I don’t want”, “If only I didn’t…”, “I wish that…”. It compares, judges, criticizes and rejects whatever is arising in the Present Moment as somehow less than. Ego mind is persistent, always ON and it tangles all that it interprets into a problem, a hassle, unless it’s recognized by conscious Awareness.

The Hassle-Maker works best in secret, operating just underneath our conscious attention.
This problem-spinner is attached to a “past/future” and identified with a “me”.
Watch for any images that arise in the mind based on something of the past.
Watch for the Hassle Maker to jump into “a future”. This is how the hassle-maker presents proof
that this moment pales in comparison for the past was “better” or “the future is going to be better”.
Every mental image it conjures can feel like a barb, a painful jab to the emotional body.

Perhaps those past times are images of “failures” and we innocently watch then get caught in this guilt-making film and become depressed. Maybe those past times were glorious so we feel disdain for what’s arising right now in our Present Moment. If the Hassle-Maker is turning this moment into a hassle, it will jump towards an imagined future and promise wondrous things “out there yet to come”. Find the negative judgment and criticism, they’re always hiding there. The Hassle-Maker must negate the Now. “This isn’t right, perfect, okay…in some way.”
It cannot be content right now. Its very existence depends on sliding into the “past” or jumping into a preferential “future”. Innocently, it cannot see the gifts and opportunities arising Now.

The Hassle-Maker needs to resist and reject. How else can its imagined outcome “live”?
Look for rejection, what arising is being pushed away, as if it could be separate? Is an emotion being repressed? Is a person being criticized? Is a situation being judged? Is an action being refused? Ego-mind is fearful, imagining itself to be separate from all of life. Its entire thought system is built on protection and defense. It cannot see blessings and gifts, it cannot recognize opportunities, for it is closed.

The Spaciousness of our Being is Life Itself. When Aware, we revel in opportunities, see blessings and give
and receive easily. This is openness, this is Freedom. This is the Present Moment where thinking mind is Still; where Life is embraced, welcomed, accepted, allowed, joined, no matter which form its energy takes.

So what can we do when the Hassle-Maker is front and center and ruining our day?
Notice, the constriction and find the tightness within the physical body. Breathe into this tightness and allow.
The Hassle-Maker must dissolve in the brightness of our Presence.
Watch thoughts as they bounce from past to future, just recognize hassling is happening.
If ego’s thoughts are so strongly believed that we can’t watch them without being swept in their current,
we can use The Work by Byron Katie to unwind each specific negative thought.
If we have enough distance to observe without being caught in thinking’s momentum, we can focus on the inner energy field of the body or the breath and just relax into our Beingness. It will pass.
Without resistance, this jagged energy stream will simply pass through.

Look for the ego’s ever-present “little me”, the personal sense of self that is identified with each negative thought. Who doesn’t like, who doesn’t want, if only who didn’t have to do…, who wishes?This is the egoic “I” that is upset, discontent, dissatisfied, unfulfilled, attached to negative emotion. It’s okay to see the egoic little me, just open
and allow it to be seen. No wrong/right, no guilt/shame, no blame, just a persistent point of view.

It might feel disheartening, “I got caught up in ego, again, I should be beyond this!”
Seeing ego is stepping out of its clutches. The Seeing is the waking up. “But I’m so tired of the ego!”
Watch ego circling back to blame even itself, who is the “I” who’s so tired, Hassle-Maker is trying to breathe
life into its own collapse. We Are That which can see this, That which includes all appearing.
Sleep, Waking, No Sleep, Never Having Slept.

If our emotional history has been one of repression, the allowance of any arising negative emotion will end the repressive patterning. Allow and accept that negative emotional energy is surfacing. Watch it with detached curiosity as one would watch a spider on the sidewalk. One might not like spiders but in that moment,
there is no danger. One needn’t stomp the spider for it is simply going about its life just as we are.
There’s no attack, no real risk, just an object sighted and an emotional reaction. It may not be pleasant
nor comfortable but it is temporary and moving on. Just as the spider, as a focal point of consciousness,
is not separate from the essence we are, the negative emotional energy as a vibration is not separate.
When we can welcome even this, we are open, willing, meeting the ego as a temporary part of the Oneness
we are without fear nor rejection.

If we’re truly desire Freedom, we might notice that Awareness wants to discover more about ego’s rejection
of What Is. Why is there rejection here, in this form? We may dive into the fear to find what’s causing a negative emotional reaction around this particular topic. We may contemplate in quiet Stillness, asking the Heart and waiting for revelation. We may laugh as we realize the Hassle-Maker’s obstinance and feel compassion for this, too. We cannot prevent the ego’s rejection but we can wake up to it and step out, disengage with ease without rejecting it. The Hassle-Maker loses all power and simply subsides. It has served a deeper purpose, to raise
Awareness, to awaken consciousness.

Even the Hassle-Maker is a gift, when seen clearly.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Ego leaves the Okay-ness & Peace of the Present Moment by "reliving a past" & "picturing a horrid future"

Spiritual Awakening involves the sharpening of Awareness. The more attentive we become to the habits of thinking mind, the more Freedom we experience from ego-mind’s suffering. Ego-mind is a movie-maker, a usurper of Creation’s ability to out-picture believed thoughts as if “outer reality”. We might pay for a movie ticket to a horror show and enjoy the voluntary frights we experience while we munch popcorn in suspended disbelief. Daily life, however, is no fun when the ego-mind plays a horror show in our mind and we cannot shake the fear we innocently believe is “true”.

We may innocently fall for the ego’s dance of terror that flashes across the screen of our mind, yet we do not have to be its captive audience. We can walk out of this “movie” at any time. How might we know we’re being played by the ego’s shenanigans? Check for emotions which feel negative: resentment, bitterness, anger…is ego-mind playing a re-run of unresolved past situations where we experienced pain?

The argument that wasn’t peacefully resolved; the relationship that ended on poor terms; the “failure” or discontent held over from a “past”. Notice the movie running in the mind. Can you see the situation, the people involved, your “self”? This is the movie, a memory trace dancing on the screen of mind. This isn’t Now, this isn’t “you, them, him, her”; it’s an illusion, creative play of mind.

Is there a purpose for the replay or re-run of ego’s past episode? Meditate on this, ask within, go deeper than mind and thoughts to the core of your innermost Being. Allow Awareness to answer. Let Spaciousness reveal if this past situation needs any present action. If not, this is ego-mind attempting to avoid the Present Moment. Come back to your breathing, come back to peace. The journey into the pain of the past keeps the ego’s personal sense of a suffering “self” alive. It strengthens the attachment and identification with a “me”. To stay Present is to snip the film like a skillful editor. Return to Now.

The ego has 2 modes of “time”: Past and Future. Ego cannot “live” in the Present Moment. What if anxiety and fear arise? Ego-mind has skipped over the Present Moment to “build” a “future”. It’s not bad nor wrong for imagination to out-picture “future” as play. When “play” hurts, as anxiety and fear often do, it’s time to return to the Present. Presence, our power of Beingness beyond thought, is Here, Now, where thinking mind is still.

Fear is propped up by thought. Fear depends on thought, believed, out-pictured into a future; this is the imaginary space in which there is no control. Believed-thought is its “life source”, its vitality. Fear can't exist in the Present.

Watch the mind’s pictures: the scenario, the situation, the people who inhabit the future plot, the “me” that is at risk and struggling. This isn’t “you, me, us, them”; it’s an illusion. It’s ego’s movie, step out, come back, return to the Present Moment. Anxiety will decrease, for the future cannot “be”. Anything which seems to be “future” can only arrive in the Now. The Now is where all ability and resources are available to handle whatever arises. Control isn’t necessary Now, it’s a trick of “future”; what arises Now is handled by That Which Is, the Truth of Who We Are. There is no “problem”, just handling of a situation.

Creativity uses the mind’s out-picturing imagination to form something new. Mind is not an enemy, it is a mighty creator. Ego-mind, however, is a distortion of Creation’s impulse, centering its imaginatively negative movies around a vulnerable little “me”. If the movie isn’t fun, step out.

If the movie is enjoyable, play, create. “Hurting” can’t happen with Awareness, only during unconscious absorption. Our ability to voluntarily become Aware is our greatest strength. Catch the ego-mind’s imagination as it moves into “past” and “future”; bring attention to the Awareness of Now, Be Present, this is where Peace exists, where we discover the depth of That which is True, beyond imagination. Our Presence, Awareness of the Present Moment is the Certainty for which we've always searched for as safety, for fear is powerless, Here, Now.

How Can We Lessen Suffering When our Pets Die? (photo: Alec Favale,Unsplash)

It’s true that each of us deals with grief in different ways. It’s also true that grief has stages of shock, denial, bargaining, anger and acceptance. This article is written in support and encouragement for the unspoken question of wondering how to grieve without suffering.

Our empathetic and compassionate friends may offer well-meaning platitudes that feel okay on the surface but don’t reach the depth of our experience. “At least (pet’s name) is no longer suffering.” “He/she is in a better place.” “He/she was just an animal, y’know, they don’t feel like humans do.” “You can get another pet, that will make you feel better.” “He/she lived a good life, it was time.” We know that our pet is now beyond the physical, but we feel we’ve been “left behind”. The pain we feel now encircles us. We know our pet was an animal and not human but we’re flooded with intense human emotions which feel negative and heavy. The mysterious processing of loss is upon us.

The natural course of change during grieving is “missing” our pet’s physical presence. Every time we see their crate, cushion, food bowl or collar, it feels like a punch to the gut. Filling out our shopping list, we might wince to catch our auto-pilot mind as it writes down the pet supplies that we will no longer need. Our routine is disrupted for we no longer have to go for the walk, throw the toy, nor pat the seat cushion next to us. We might have flashbacks to the vet where we heard the shocking news or we might see our mental movie of the exact moment we witnessed our pet’s bodily death. Change doesn’t come easily, especially when it’s unwanted and unwelcome. Innocently, ego-mind recoils from emotional pain, fearing powerlessness.

We’re innocent, we want physical things to last forever. Why isn’t love enough to surpass the limitations of physical form? We don’t want our pets to leave our side. We want to hold on. We’d invested so much love and received so much joy, so much humor, so much playfulness, so much loyalty, so much companionship, so much acceptance and so much unconditional love.

The inner depth of us, our inner Being-ness which lies deeper than our thinking mind recognizes that pain is not the same as suffering. Humans cope and deal with pain every day. We make it through the physical pains of illness, surgery and accidents. We make it through the mental pain of frustration, irritation and annoyance. We stumble and wonder how we’ll make it through emotional pain, yet we manage. Why does pain surrounding death seem so impossibly difficult?

Unresolved pain can fester and become suffering, much like unattended tooth pain can develop into abscess. If we notice that the pain is not lessening, if it continues to throb with intensity, we can seek the help of our own inner guidance which comes from our Transcendental Nature. This is the assistance which is deep within, beyond the thinking mind.

The ego-mind, when unrecognized and misunderstood becomes a trouble-maker, a suffering-generator, a spinner of sharp yet sticky stories which cut and bleed through emotions which feel gut-wrenchingly negative. We feel heartbroken, yet the True Heart, our innermost Stillness, rests in Peace, always available, supporting and comforting, unconditionally loving and more powerful than the mind can possibly imagine.

Suffering, unrecognized, will build to its peak as thinking mind actively avoids, represses, denies, resists, projects and fights the arising pain of grief. This is to be expected for this is simply the limited design of the thinking mind. Our True Nature is not the thinking mind. We are That field of Stillness, the Awareness of the mind (its thoughts, its emotions) and all of the physical things the mind can define in the present moment in which they arise.

Diving into grief from the point of our Beingness is a gentle way to drain the emotional abscess of suffering.
The ego-mind will refuse and this is okay. The thinking mind is not needed for this process.

Sit in nature or find a comfortable quiet place. Release the thinking mind, allow it to spin. Focus all attention on feeling the inner aliveness of the physical body. Closing the eyes might deepen the concentration. Feel the heartbeat and the breath. Watch an arising thought and allow it to pass without engaging with the thought. Be like a detached witness watching "an emotion cloud" float through a calm, open "sky-of-mind". Listen to the Stillness with every cell of the body.

Emotion might arrive, witness and allow it pass without “falling” into the feeling nor attaching to the feeling. Notice the stomach and chest as each breath rises and falls. Listen, deeper still, as if every cell of the body is watching and waiting. Focusing within, find a part of the body that feels open and free. Concentrate on this part of the body to notice how expansive it feels.

Find a part of the body which feels contracted and tight. Bring the breath into this part of the body, as if you’re breathing into a crumpled rubber glove to expand its size like an inflated glove-balloon. Breathe into the contraction until it feels open and free.

Go through the body with attention and breathe into the contracted parts until all areas feel open and free. As the last area of the body expands, ask: “Am I okay in this one present moment?” Allow the thinking mind to resist; come back to the open freedom , notice the breath, listen to the heartbeat, feel the Spaciousness. “Am I okay, right now? Here, just in this present moment? Not later, just now. This one moment... is there a sense of calm? Could it be called peace? Comfort? Spaciousness? Okay-ness?”

Back and forth, the mind will arise as thought or feeling. Awareness will arise as a space around pain. This space is felt most keenly when thinking mind goes silent. This sense of calm or peace is always available, right here, right now, when thoughts are allowed to pass by. This Peace is present even while suffering arises. Suffering is just louder, fed by the energy of swirling, screaming, resistant thinking mind. Peace has no problem with grief. Peace allows and accepts all things which arise.

To feel Peace during grief is to able to withstand temporary pain. The Wholeness Which We Are “honors” pain’s presence as it moves. Honored pain does not stick, bind, sicken, nor wreak havoc, it releases its vibration and dissolves. When we ask, “how do I make it through this pain?”, we are spiritually Awakening.

We recognize pain, we become aware of suffering and we look for a better way to meet grief. The allowance of grief becomes part of the expansion of Who We Are as consciousness. Thinking mind will argue in its effort to prove its suffering. Allow the sound and fury, return Awareness to physical sensations within the physical body. Find the Spaciousness, the heartbeat and the breath.

Awakening might address the pain-body, the ego-mind’s collection of past pain which is made of beliefs tied to specific emotions that have yet to be investigated, resolved and released. If so, each thought which brings suffering can be teased out of the knotted thinking mind through compassionate inquiry. The spiritual teacher Byron Katie’s website: www.thework.com offers a brilliantly simple way to question the untruth of egoic thoughts.

Sitting in Stillness with a question is to enter contemplation from within. This practice uses the Intellect to comprehend revelations from our inner Wisdom. This is the use of mind in service to our Being-ness, as a tool for Awakening, rather than being pulled along by unconscious thinking mind. Certain beliefs will appear time and time, again, increasing our suffering with each appearance. These “emotional knots” are ready for final release.

We might ask deep questions which lead us to Truth previously hidden yet known through direct experience.

• Does my pet’s physical death in any way mirror the fear of my own physical death?
• Is thinking mind telling me I’m responsible and should have been able to keep my pet alive? Is the life span of
any organism,
even that of my own physical body, really under my control? Is this a thought, a believed story?
• Is there a “self” which feels it did something wrong or didn’t do something right?
• Did I mistakenly believe that the love I felt with my pet, came from my pet? Is fearful thinking saying I’ll never
feel that love, again, since my pet’s physical body is absent?
• Has the mind believed that there’s non-existence or nothing after the physical body dies?

Bring each of these into the spacious Stillness in reverent contemplation. Awakening will unwind the innocent ignorance of ego-mind which comprehends only separation and fear. Our True Nature reveals Itself in Stillness, the place of union without fear, the presence of unconditional love and peace.

Thinking mind can only argue with That which it cannot understand. We can allow, Knowing we are not our conditioning, we are not just the human experience. We find the Transcendental essence beyond the physical where sweetness envelops bitterness.

Suffering cannot exist in the presence of our True Nature, pain simply passes through our Beingness. This moment is where we find this Presence, the consciousness We Are. Presence animates our pet's form and arises from the depths we call our Heart after our pet’s form dissolves. Presence has no end.
Consciousness survives the death of the matter on which it rides.

We can allow our hearts to be broken wide open, so we might see all beliefs of thinking mind which stand in the way of our recognition of That which cannot suffer, that which cannot be damaged, That which never changes and That which can never leave.

We can go through the stages of grief and experience temporary pain instead of suffering.
We can remember time shared with our pets and find celebration. We can adjust to change. We can mourn and setup a memorial. We can talk with friends and loved ones about our pet. We can sit in the Stillness of our Being and willingly open to our Awakening as That Which We Are, while we experience grief. This “dive” into the pain from the starting point of our Being-ness is tapping into the power of our Transcendental Nature.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Hope While Grieving Estrangement

Awakening is a multi-faceted process that includes spiritual revelation and euphoria yet also includes confusion, uncertainty, times of “no-available-answers” and the absence of “light”. Is there hope, here, even during these moments - which seem to stretch longer than we’d wish -and are “darker” than we’d prefer?

We’ve heard it said in human terms that these times “build character”, they’re the growing-pains of maturation and development. It can be difficult to “see progress” when the topic is ethereal and as subtle as spiritual development or the expansion of consciousness. We can’t see progress, we can’t “touch it” nor measure it. We can only feel the effects of suffering and notice the speed through which we move through it and rate the intensity of reactivity compared to our past conditioned patterns.

What about when we’re estranged from someone we love?

A friend, a spouse, a parent, a child, estrangement can take many forms, even space and distance from a pet, from a job, from a former habit or routine. We may view the separation as involuntary if it wasn’t our choice or perhaps necessary albeit undesirable, even if it were our choice. We hurt. We wonder if we’re doing the “right” thing. We worry if perhaps
we’re “wrong”. We may feel ambivalent, sorrowful and yet relieved; self-righteous yet guilty; resigned yet depressed.

There are times during Awakening when we feel alone, as if no one seems to see what we see nor understand what we’re beginning to comprehend. It might feel as if we’ve suddenly awakened one morning speaking a new language. No matter how hard we try, everyone with whom we attempt to communicate, cannot understand us.

It’s one thing if we try to explain the inner workings of a diesel engine to someone who knows nothing about trucks, at least we can draw pictures or use metaphors to get our point across. But, spiritual awakening? No pictures work, metaphors seem to fall short, belief systems and narratives might clash. We have many experiences where we simply cannot “get through” to someone for whom we care so much.

The frustration of “bumping up against” differing levels of consciousness can create overwhelming feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. It might feel as though the person we’re attempting to converse with is blocking open communication; it feels as though emotionally, their heart is shut-down; a closed mind is causing conversational gridlock. We feel separate, alone, stymied, at a loss and desperately wanting some type of agreement to feel that we’re still “close”, that we share some type of common ground. Egoic mind needs agreement so that “self” doubt doesn’t arise.

Grieving is perceiving loss. It’s not “good, bad, right, wrong”, it’s simply a slant on a story believed by mind. Grief is part of the human experience. “Loss” is part of mind’s attachment, an element of change within our physical, mental, emotional dimensions. Thinking mind attaches to people, animals, the physical body, clothing, houses, relationships, cars, money, body-weight, body-health, favorite foods, sex, drinks, habits, routines, preferences.

Our pain-body, the collection of innocently ignorant, uninvestigated and often repeated actions and reactions which creates suffering bonds with these attachments to form identification. This is egoic suffering, the “personal me”, the identity that “hurts” when changes happen at unwanted times, in undesirable ways, to the attachments within mind - to objects - in our physical or emotional worlds.

For example: When mind attaches to hot chocolate there is an experience of pleasure. When we become stressed and rely on hot chocolate to self-soothe and the coffee-shop is sold out of hot chocolate, we hit-the-roof with anger or feel we can’t cope with the depression, shock or loss of having to go without “what we need”. This is our pain-body’s identification with the mind’s attachment to hot chocolate/self-soothing and the identification of “me” who is hurting right now and in need of relief. There’s no problem with mental attachments, no problem with pleasure, nor self-soothing, no problem with an angry
nor grieving “me”, it is just emotional suffering - when it goes unrecognized.

The egoic mind, attaching to objects and forming identifications around a “me” is convinced that a specific circumstance is causing pain. It cannot see that it’s mode-of-operation is the cause of suffering. Egoic mind substitutes a piece of cake for hot chocolate, a cigarette, a different drink, or a release of pent-up frustration by cursing the coffeeshop staff. The pain-body seeks relief in any way it can. If there were no loss…where is the suffering?

This is why we can say that grief is a perception of loss, a slant on a story or narrative about loss created by thinking mind fueled by the pain-body. If there were no (story of ) “me”…where is the suffering?

Estrangement could be said to be separation from someone/something we love/need which feels in some way undesirable, it is tinged with loss. The pain-body might have other emotions bonded to the loss such as righteous anger, shame/guilt, jealousy/rage, bitterness/resentment, depression/despair. Negative emotions have their energetic vibration and tend to “clump up” in pairs, triples, multiples. Each emotion is “tied in place” or justified by a story.

The ego’s pain-body tells its angry story, we believe the story and the emotion anger is felt. The ego’s pain-body tells its resentment story, we believe the story and the emotion resentment is felt. The pain-body shares its perception of loss, we believe the narrative of loss and grief is felt. None of this is wrong nor bad, it’s the way of the thinking mind, the egoic mind,
the pain-body as they make up the human emotional-mental experience in the context of relationship.

That Which We Are - beyond yet including our human experience- is immensely Wise and vastly Intelligent. Awakening brings recognition or Awareness of this depth of Intelligent Wisdom that is beyond mind yet It expresses through the mind to dawn as revelation or intuition.

During Awakening we become more aware of:

• Emotions; intensity, frequency, positive/negative “spin”, reactivity
• Thoughts, individual thoughts which when believed, create a particular emotion and patterns of thoughts, which when woven together create mental-emotional themes
• Patterns of thought-belief-emotion of the pain-body based on past pain which, when repeated, innocently, re-create suffering
• The “personal me”, the stories believed which create an egoic “self” or story
• Positive “happy stories” and Negative “sad stories” of a “personal me”
• The Intelligent Wisdom that is beyond thinking mind and all stories
• The Unshakable Peace and Certainty beyond the “personal me” and pain-body’s suffering

Awakening offers opportunities to recognize Freedom and this may come by walking through the dark alleyways which frighten us. Grief can be scary. Estrangement can be frightening. Loss can feel overwhelming. Confusion and the vacillation of changing perception can feel worrisome. If we dive into That which arises, whether it is grief, estrangement, loss, confusion, worry, anger, resentment, uncertainty…we let go of egoic thinking mind and all of its attachments and pain-body identifications…into That Intelligent Wisdom within which all forms appear. This Spaciousness has no separation for It is Our Very Beingness. This Knows there is no true loss of any kind. This is beyond story, beyond pain and contains no suffering.

We face Grief in Estrangement so that it can lead us through the portal of suffering into That which is Peace, Itself, Our True Transcendent Nature, while we’re experiencing the human condition. This transforms human suffering, itself. We can directly experience this for ourselves although words are limited to describe what we witness.

We can walk directly into the darkness of grief during estrangement, fall into its shadows to discover the “un-darkness” it contains. It only looked dark because we’d not directly-experienced it. Fear made it look “dark and black”, it was colored by a fearful ego’s negative story

“But, this is so airy-fairy, you’re not describing anything concrete in real world terms, I’m looking for answers for how to deal with no longer being able to get along with my family member. What am I supposed to do? Do I stay distant and not contact them or am I supposed to forget it all and just call them and get over it even though I know the drama is gonna start all over, again?!”

This is how the thinking mind, the ego and its pain-body approach its “problems”. Not wrong, just notice. The “cause’ for its suffering is “out there”, someone else, a circumstance. The cause is the ego-mind’s story about the circumstance and the way the pain-body is identified with a “me” and its suffering. There’s no wrong answer, even no answer is okay if no-answer comes.
Just watch the egoic mind look “outside” rather than at its own method of operation by demanding an answer. Rather than being pulled along by the momentum of thinking mind’s obsessive need to problem-solve, dive into the formless beingness of the present moment.

Watch the mind’s movement. The mind’s movement is then entered contemplatively by Awareness which refocuses mind on identifying egoic thought and emotion. Awakening will release the conditioned patterns of thinking mind. The starting point is the Stillness beyond mind and moves through mind instead of starting with the twisting and spinning point of reactive egoic thinking mind. Start from Stillness, intense Presence. Awakening will guide the use of mind as a tool. (The shovel doesn’t create a garden, the gardener uses the shovel as the tool to create the growing area of the garden).

Identify what the pain-body considers to be a “loss” of estrangement. The pain-body will speak in terms of “I/Me”. “I” miss feeling supported. There’s no one left to validate “me”. “I” miss feeling close. “I” feel all alone without them. “I” can’t be around that person anymore, it stresses “me” out. “I” miss feeling whole, like a family. “I” need their company. “I” need them to encourage “me”. The ego always wants/desires something and the pain-body always needs/is lacking something. No judgment, no criticism, just observe, see if you can determine what feels like loss, which seems to be “caused” by the estrangement.

Notice this “loss” is being told by the egoic personal me; it is a created story. Allow the story yet don’t completely believe the story. Be willing and open for the Wisdom of the Transcendent dimension to see through the story. Let the Truth of Who You Are see through the suffering. This is the void which gives way to the “Peace that passeth understanding” as mentioned in the bible. The thinking mind is bypassed and Wisdom dawns, clearly with powerful Certainty which is full, alive, lacking nothing, undisturbed, filled with pure unconditional love and goodness.

How This shows up within our experience will be tailor-made to our Awakening. What actions might follow this direct experience to take place in the physical dimension will be tailor-made to the people/situations involved. Some might call that person and forgiveness might flow restoring contact and communication. Others might allow estrangement to continue yet will feel a shift of compassion within their Hearts so the grief becomes “sweet” rather than bitter-reminding them of the depth of love they have for that person every time a thought of them comes to their mind, yet no contact is resumed. The “how’s” and “what’s” are as varied as are the variety of human experience, yet each of us will experience that which is perfectly suited for us at the appropriate time in the most loving and beneficent way intended specifically for us.

Awakening cannot be described like a cookbook or a textbook with steps 1, 2, 3. Recipes and stair-stepped solutions are creations of thought, of mind which work on objects within the physical dimension. Since we’re not only the physical form called a body, we are offered the much larger all-encompassing Wholeness expressed recognized during Awakening. The Transcendental realm is of direct-experience which reveals Itself to Itself-as-Who-We-Are.

Conditioned behavior can be managed using steps, such as certain recovery solutions, healing strategies, adaptive behavioral change, etc... Consciousness expands when the innocent ignorance of conditioning begins to awaken. The seeming “change” in consciousness is seen on the physical level as “change” to conditioned patterns. By tuning into the Transcendental, the physical process of change is seen to be already taken care of within the larger process of Awakening to the Wholeness of Who We Are.

Diving into the grief of estrangement will reveal the egoic thinking mind’s story and the pain-body’s identifications causing the suffering blamed on the estrangement. We can allow even this to deepen the experience of the Truth of Who We Are. The grief will give way to a deeper and stronger experience of unconditional love of which the thinking mind doesn’t know.

The Truth of Who We Are cannot be separated nor estranged, only in the physical experience of the human can egoic mind believe itself to be “separated” from “another”. The pain-body is needing something, the egoic personal self is wanting something. That something is being perceived as being “over there” or “given by them”. This is an innocent yet ignorant attachment and identification made by thinking mind and pain-body overlayed onto that other person.

Since the other person is “separate/estranged”, it seems to be “missing”, hence…the “loss”. Seen clearly, what is needed/wanted is here, already, within, right here, right now, not dependent on anyone else. No circumstance has the
power to cancel the Peaceful Wholeness available in this Present moment.

We are courageous enough to question the validity of “loss”. As the spiritual teacher Byron Katie says, “I don’t let go of my stories, I meet them with understanding. Then they let go of me.”

There is hope while grieving estrangement. We step into the depths of Who We Truly Are, undisturbed, to discover our wholeness, completely at peace, right now.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Weebly Wobblies: Facing Anxiety of "a Future"

Awakening provides many opportunities to “purge” conditioned mental habits. We can wake up one morning absorbed
in fearful anxiety and not know from where this comes. Our mind searches for a “cause”. “I don’t understand, yesterday
I felt great, I had no fear, I faced some challenges and sailed right through them. So, what’s going on?” Just being aware
of anxiety as a feeling is a major accomplishment. This is stepping back and viewing the mind as it races and runs.
This is Awareness.

We can ask, “what is the problem at this very moment?” There won’t be one, not in this Present Moment. This is our clue, fearful mind is projecting a fearful future. We can dive deeply into Presence and allow the mind to jump and spin while watching it from a “distance”. The body may shake with pent-up nervousness. The breathing may be shallow and fast from the
adrenaline of fear or anxiety. We can watch and wait for the body to settle down.

Find the gap of Spaciousness and rest within. If the body has too much energy to sit still, we can move into some activity which requires no thought. We have regular routines we perform on auto-pilot. We clean, we organize, we pick up sticks in the yard, we gather and take off the trash. We make the bed and wash the dishes. These will release the excess energy without engaging the thinking mind.

Awareness will notice when the anxiety passes, the body breathes deeply, there will be sighs of relaxation. There is an inner release. The “past” is purged and we “wake up” again in the present. Staying out of the “future story” which fuels the anxiety will allow the pattern to dissolve so that it doesn’t renew itself. This is the release of karma or conditioning. It’s just an energetic wave which passes through us like a whirlwind blowing leaves.

The “future story” will seem to be “reality”, it will attempt to pull attention to itself. If we refuse to believe the story, just allow
it to be without resisting nor indulging it, the story will collapse. The belief in future is deeply ingrained in the human collective consciousness. The momentum is strong and the attraction is intense. Future is a mighty fable which is seductive to worry.
Simply seeing its movement is all that is necessary.

Future comes as the Now. Refocusing attention Now, allows all to unfold in perfect timing. This step, this one step, we can take. The next step will arise when we are ready, in the Now. When we walk to the mailbox, do we become fearful that suddenly half-way, we will not be able to reach the mailbox? Do we worry that the left leg will not follow the right leg to make
its next step? No, we simply walk, we move forward without undue concern that each step will happen.

There may have been a time in our past when we reacted to anxiety with movement to “secure” the future. We may have obsessed about finances, we may have taken a 3rd job, we may have brainstormed a new venture, we might have bought
extra insurance, we might have gone on vacation to run away from anxiety. We could not face the uncertainty arising within. We may have tried to exert some type of control by refashioning our 5-year plan. It’s innocent, this desire to find security
in the physical world where things constantly change.

Each moment is full in and of Itself. Breathe into, step into the Uncertainty and allow it to be. This little death of “thinking mind’s dependence” is a deeper movement of the allowing of Awakening. The dying of attachment to mental objects of thought.
The arising of formless Presence which is secure and safe, as It is, freshly alive and whole, right Here, right Now.

Breathe, take a step, breathe, take the next step. We are unfolding in perfect timing and the most perfect of ways. It’s happening Now. Eckhart Tolle says, “Stillness is the death you move into voluntarily, if you’re ready.” We’re not falling
“off the planet”, we’re moving deeper into That Which We Are and All is Well.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Thriving During Panic Attacks

Another mystery of the human experience is feeling flooded with emotion without
knowing from where nor why it has come. Panic attacks aren’t pleasant nor comfortable.
The mammalian brain spontaneously goes into hyperdrive, to fight or flee some unknown danger, to ensure physical or psychological survival. When we cannot identify the thoughts or past references which escalated into high anxiety, it feels as though we’re under siege and it’s happening without our permission. We feel we have no control; the best we can manage is
to “hold on” while our world is spinning, threatening to throw us off its axis.

Confusing, frustrating, worrisome, our emotional reactions resist the unwanted adrenaline
spike. We hear inner thoughts, “am I going crazy, what is going on?” We tighten in fearful contractions while the thinking mind tries to interpret, judge and desperately seeks to understand in efforts to “make it stop”. We search for ways to self-soothe as we ride out the panic attack.

Awakening is a time for these types of “emotional clearances”. Our backlog of forgotten, repressed emotional suffering
rises to the surface for release. Our repetition of conditioned patterns in the present are teaching cause and effect.
It’s okay to not know the why’s and the how’s. It’s fine if we caught a few thoughts and can see clearly how our belief
in them allowed anxiety to build. Panic cannot last, it is temporary, it will pass.

The more deeply we sink into the Present moment during the attack, the more aware we become of the Spaciousness
which “surrounds” the panic. If panic happens, we can allow it, too, to live and die, to arise and fall away. Only our fear
of it prompts the thinking mind to believe it needs to be able to control it. Imagine trying to control the falling of a raindrop.
It simply does what it does, part of the natural cycle of falling rain within the framework of weather.

The pattern of conditioned mind would have “us” believe that “we” are the panic. This is mind attaching to its objects.
Thoughts and emotions arise within mind. The egoic sense of personal self is ego-mind attaching to its story of a “me”,
tied to ego’s identification with the physical body. When mind “moves” into thought and emotion, the story says “mine”,
“my thought, my emotion” which builds to become “I’m anxious, I’m panicking”.

The ultimate Truth of Who We Are is the Awareness of thought and emotion arising; the field of consciousness
within which objects of mind can appear and disappear.

”But it feels so real…’I’ feel like a ‘me’ to which this is happening.” I get it, I’m right here with you and have believed
the very same thing. It has to feel real when thinking mind is believed, this is the power of consciousness, Itself.

“So, what can I do?” Just breathe and watch. Rather than contract, open, allow.
When thinking mind is firing fearful thoughts, allow them to pass without believing them nor resisting them.
Dive into the Spaciousness of the moment with curiosity and discovery.
Fully feel whatever comes rather than pushing it away. The observation through Awareness will delight
in watching everything unfold. We get a glimpse of Freedom, the unlimited ability to honor subtle energetic
forms such as thoughts and emotions without mind attaching to them in support of ego’s story of “me”.
The repetition of panic attacks can be reframed from a tale of woe and suffering to be active spiritual practice.
We can observe the refinement of Awareness as the egoic story of me unwinds and further detachment from thinking
mind occurs.

Awakening is a mystery, benevolent with highest intent for greatest Goodwill.
Cooperation through open willingness speeds the process and smoothens the rough spots of conditioning.
As we safely sail through panic attacks, compassion flows for the innocence of fear and the reactivity
of physically-dependent perceptions of survival. We find the balance of resting in Peace even while panic
seems to flail for a tiny while.

Soon, the dread of attacks turns into welcome anticipation.
The unconditional love of acceptance allows for this, too, as part of the Wholeness of Being.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

DISCOMBOBULATION: Weathering Mental Windstorms

During Awakening, the mind’s attachment to “objects” of thought and emotion are being recognized in more and more situations. The identification with a “personal me” is coming into Awareness. The dependence on thinking is seen. Spaciousness as consciousness expands. The creative impulse is noticed as well as the intellect’s assistance as a tool for relating with objects and forms for “doing “on the physical level, meeting goals and accomplishing tasks.

Vacillation will occur where mind becomes too attached and then, is recognized. This will feel like the proverbial “two steps forward, one step back”. Have patience, this is a mighty task, The disidentification with mind. Mind enjoys “mind-ing” and the pattern is deeply entrenched. There is no need to “stop” the mind’s mind-ing. Just noticing is enough, for conscious Consciousness allows what arises. The “stopping” is an inner directive to pay full attention in bright, alertness rather than
to be swept away in mind’s current without any notice.

The mind is beautiful, creativity is magnificent, there is no need to deny its movement. Being conscious is about Awareness rather than control. Unconsciousness is simply full absorption in the mind with no Awareness of the fullness of formless Being. Integrating Awareness with mind’s movement is to be Aware, conscious, fully attentive and alive while mind does what it does.

Awakening brings revelation of the formlessness of consciousness, That which cannot change and is ever Present.
The conditioned mind will recoil at times from the Awareness of formlessness. Egoic mind will assert the personal-self story
as part of the momentum of the human dream. The pull of unconsciousness, falling back to sleep, has its cycle of surging
and easing. This isn’t failure in any way. We wouldn’t say that rain is sunshine’s failure. Rain is part of the total wholeness
of weather. Being Present and then having conditioning arise and pull us into sleep is part of the cycle of the expansion
of consciousness. Watching the mind attempt to reincarnate within the human dream by jump-starting the “personal me”
is simply what mind does. Mind moves and attaches to subtle and gross forms. The very fact that it can be seen proves
the existence of Being, the field of Awareness within which mind and its movement appears.

"But how does knowing this help me? ‘I’m’ being tossed around by the mind. One day I wake up and feel clear, as if I’m pure Consciousness. The next day my head is jam-packed with desires and fears. I feel an urge to do something, anything and I wear myself out’ doing’ but it feels like it’s all for naught. I don’t know what to believe anymore. I don’t understand the point of anything. Every human activity feels devoid of true meaning - the way I feel as Consciousness - human stuff just doesn’t compare. This surge of creativity comes and I don’t know what to do with it. I accomplish things and the edge wears off but then I get sucked into the personal me story about what ‘I’ve’ just accomplished.”

“How do I reconcile all of this? It’s like there’s 2 layers, the physical and the spiritual and they’re all jumbled together and I can’t see straight. I feel horrible, like half of me is spinning as a human and half of me is free watching it all happen yet there’s no sense of being able to control any of it. Part of ‘me’ is grasping, trying to hold on and feels terrified while the other part is at peace with everything, just as it is, having absolutely no needs at all.”

Just the fact that this is seen, is Awareness. This active seeing is Consciousness being integrated within your human form.
This is the expansion of Consciousness into humanity. Yes, it’s confusing. Yes, it’s discombobulating. This is the newest creation, having never happened, before. Let it be, just as it is, just what it is. Fear, as a conditioned pattern, will remain
for awhile.

Fear rears its head when things move in new ways, outside its “rut”, its normally conditioned route. That brings the desire
for control. Let it feel messy if that’s what is arising. Nothing is truly at risk. During these times it may help to concentrate
fully on just what is happening in this Now moment.

Imagine walking through a heavy windstorm. The winds are so intense they pull your jacket open and both sides of your coat are flapping. Off goes your hat, it’s flown 50 feet behind you, sliding away from you across the pavement. Your eyes are tearing as the cold wind whips your face. Your body is stumbling, you bend forward into the wind and your thighs burn with effort to keep pushing forward. There is no control, here. Everything feels “out of control”, even your hair and eyelashes are being rifled by the wind. Just allow. The mind’s need to control will cause anxiety.

If you relax and focus on just one thing, the anxiety will release. Focus on your breath, focus on your right foot moving forward to take its step, just one thing comes into Awareness in the moment. The beauty of that one thing under focus will blossom and the “rest” will simply fade away in importance.

This doesn’t mean that you might not take shelter around the corner of the building to step out of the wind for awhile.
This doesn’t mean that you won’t back-track to retrieve your hat. This doesn’t mean that you won’t wipe your eyes.
This doesn’t mean you don’t grip your jacket tight to keep it closed. It doesn’t mean you strip naked and let the wind
carry you into the middle of the busy street directly into the path of zooming vehicles.

It just means through present moment attention on one thing will blur the overwhelm the mind experiences when realizing it has no real control. What makes the experience so unpleasant is not the actual events which are happening. Mind’s resistance to what is happening is what feels so unpleasant. The ego so quickly blames the happening circumstances as “the cause”,
the “problem” that this subtle resistance through blame usually slips by unnoticed. Blaming of outer circumstance happens lightning-fast.

Imagine a free mind, completely open-willing-non-resistant. This mind would be ecstatic in the windstorm. WHOOSH! (heavy winds) “WOW!” says the free mind. FLAPPP! (goes the coat) “Oooh, check that out!” says the open mind. TEARS FALLING “that wind is super strong, my eyes are watering” says the open mind. ZIP! (off goes the hat) “WHOA! Ha-ha-ha!” says the free mind. STRAIN “look how strong these thighs are, making progress forward even with the strength of this wind, holy cow!” says the open mind. SHHHOOOOO! (hair whips in all directions) “well, here comes the wind-tossed look, haha” says the free mind. The open, free mind loves it all and rejects nothing.

Each arising thing is accepted, allowed and joined with delight. There’s no thought of control because there’s no resistance, there’s no desire that things be different than just how they are, right in the moment. There is a delicious openness where anything could happen and discovering it as-it-happens is paramount and fun. One might duck into a kiosk and feel the drop
of the wind and enjoy that still 30 seconds of respite. One might sit down and hold on, just feel the might of the wind’s intensity. Who knows, only You as Life can reveal Itself in that Now moment and only You as Life can witness it how and why it shows
up within You as Conscious Consciousness, fully aware and alive, as an experience of a human form.

Compare this with the closed, unwilling, conditioned and resistant mind:
WHOOSH! (heavy winds) “Oh no! This is awful! This wind should stop! I need to get out of here!” FLAPPP! (goes the coat) “I’m gonna freeze! I’ve got to get this coat buttoned/zipped” TEARS FALLING “noooo, this is ruining my eyeliner/I hate when this happens! I’ve got to keep my eyes closed” ZIP! (off goes the hat) “Damn it! Now I’ll have to circle back and find my hat,
that hat cost me $15, that car better not run over it!” STRAIN “I hope I don’t fall down, this is ridiculous, I bet I look stupid, why me, why today, what a mess, I hate this!” SHHHOOOOO! (hair whips in all directions) “My hair is ruined! I have an interview, what shit-luck is that?!”.

Look at the stress, the simple appearance of a gust of wind to a resistant mind has created the emotions of fear, negative criticism, judgment, worry, sadness, anxiety, anger, frustration, concern, grief, resentment, bitterness. This is suffering.
Each arising thing is refused, rejected, disallowed and held as separate and unwanted. There is anger around desire
to control thoughts because there’s maximum resistance. Every desire is for things to be different than just how they are
in the moment.

So, the mind is spinning while the two layers of human doing and Being are filtering through integration. Just notice what arises in each moment, focus on it, breathe and let go. You can even name what arises if it helps you to focus. Confusion…breathe and let go. Spinning…breathe and let go. Moving to the sink…breathe and let go. Washing my coffee cup…breathe and let go. Thought: what am I supposed to do next…breathe and let go. Worry thought: next month’s storage bill…breathe and let go. Only one thing is to be done at a time. The mind, however, will be throwing multiple things out at once, many more than could even be accomplished. Just let mind throw thoughts around. Identify, breathe, let go. Re-focus on what one thing is here,
right now.

“But what if I’m supposed to be doing something else?” We can only do what is arising right now, it’s just the mind that is racing elsewhere. You are not the mind, You are That experiencing the mind. If there really is something to be done, it will become so obvious that it will feel impossible not to do it. The knock will appear at the door – there’s the thing to do, open the door to see who’s there. The phone will ring, there’s the next thing to do, answer the phone. The dog will bark, there’s the next thing to do, fill the bowl with dogfood or take the dog for a walk. A person enters the room, there’s a greeting to give. Even though the mind is spinning, the body won’t fall off the earth…even though it feels like it might. Breathe. Awareness is allowing for the process of dis-identification with the firing thoughts of mind.

The mind is an object, a very subtle object, but it has form, nonetheless. It, too, goes through cycles just like weather.
We have windstorms where leaves are blown around. Mind has windstorms where thoughts are blown around.
Imagine trying to catch all of the leaves and hold them down so nothing moves. That’s what we try to do during a mental windstorm, round up all the thoughts and do something with them but it’s not something which can be controlled.
Relax, let the thoughts whip around. Breathe. The whip-around won’t go on forever.

“But I can’t sleep when I feel like this! I get insomnia.” Then sleep isn’t what’s happening, can you relax into not sleeping
rather than resisting it? The thinking mind will demand “why?!!!” followed by all the reasons why what’s happening shouldn’t
be happening. This is a prime opportunity to watch thinking mind’s throw its temper tantrum over control. Meet the thinking mind, exactly where it is. Allow it to rage, allow it to want, allow it to resist. Just breathe. Observe it’s proof: “but I’m going
to be tired, but if I don’t get 9 hours I’m going to be a wreck, this is stupid, this is not productive, this is wasted time.”
Don’t defend, don’t rationalize, don’t judge. Just watch. Breathe. Allow.

I get it, easier said than done. Be gentle and open. Join the thinking mind rather than judging it. When you focus
on your breathing, even if it’s rapid and soaked with anxiety, move so deeply into your breathing that you catch a glimpse
of Spaciousness, even if it’s just half a second. Move deeper, find the space or gap which is free from thought and watch
it expand. It may open and expand into 15 seconds. Keep following that openness which feels peaceful.

Mysteriously, Presence will surround the discontented thinking mind and hold it in loving embrace. Your body will register
a sigh and relax. Keep focusing on your breathing and dive even deeper into the calming release of acceptance. Feel this Spaciousness “surround” the mental windstorm. Look for a feeling of compassion, of tender acceptance. The whirlwind
of thinking mind cannot continue to swirl in the Presence of the embrace by That Which We Are.

The bible mentions the miracle of Jesus when He calmed the stormy Sea of Galilee. This is a story of a physical miracle dealing with wind and water. Since we embody the Christ-Spirit or Awakening Consciousness, we can witness this miracle for ourselves as our Presence calms the mental windstorms comprised of subtle energy as thoughts and feelings.

The biblical story tells of Jesus and his disciples crossing the Sea of Galilee to expand His ministry to the Gentiles. Soon after their launch, Jesus laid down to sleep and a violent storm arose. As waves washed over the edge of the boat and filled it with water, the disciples began to fear for their lives.

Mark 4:37-41: “A furious squall came up and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped.
Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him, ‘Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?’ He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, ‘Quiet! Be Still!’ Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.
He said to His disciples, ‘Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?’ They were terrified and asked each other,
'Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey Him’!” Jesus demonstrated Certainty and encouraged Faith, that all is well, even during wind, waves and boat-rocking.

This is the same miracle happening in the bedroom when anxious thinking mind is storming and the rocking body cannot
sleep. Focusing on the breath concentrates Awareness. Present Moment focus moves our inherent divine identity as formless consciousness into Awareness. Presence, the active aware aspect of Conscious consciousness surrounds the “storm”
of thinking mind. This Stillness, this gap of quietitude and peace is the “call” for the thinking mind’s storm to cease.
The collapse of the storm, the end of resistance, is thinking mind’s release of its contracted energy into the welcoming
embrace of the Present Moment.

Our Presence or Awareness is the “control” through non-resistant clear seeing which the thinking mind attempts to replicate with doing-behavior to dominate and overcome circumstances. We don’t have to understand the process for it to work. Breathe, allow. No windstorm lasts forever. Energy builds, erupts, then settles. We can weather the weather and we can weather the windstorms, on the physical levels and its subtle levels of thinking mind. It simply is, this Awakening process, breathe, cooperate, let it do what it does.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Giving from Being: an Antidote for Loneliness

As we go through the Awakening process, we will face the conditioned ways we’ve connected with others through our lifetime. We will become aware of the ego’s desires, manipulations, defenses as well as early childhood programming where we searched for approval, permission, praise, and love from our care-givers.

Conflict in friendships and relationships point out the cause-effect nature of the ego’s personal sense of “self”.
We experience turmoil when we believe thinking mind’s negative thoughts and act out reactively. We reach the point
where we are very weary of war. We will do anything to experience peace. We move past denial and open to the
inner-correction of ways we’ve behaved through dysfunctional emotional reactivity; we learn about emotional health.
We address feelings and learn to communicate with transparency.

We question codependence and begin to learn assertiveness. We move out of enmeshment and step into empowerment.
We turn within rather than expecting or demanding that others do for us what we’re able to do. We give outer support and learn to request support. We tune into inner validation and encouragement as we work through fears. We notice what needs to be done, we do what is necessary in each moment, we watch our skillsets improve. We experience greater ease achieving specific goals in our physical world. We learn to balance doing with spiritual practice or sitting in the silence of being-ness.
We participate and we contribute, yet we let go of results.

Awakening has its times of gentleness and fierce strength. Some conditioning dissolves, mch like cotton candy when it meets the moisture within the mouth. Other patterns of conditioning are cut clean through with one slicing blow, like a razor-sharp sword. The ego’s restrictiveness, limitation and bondage are no match for the sharp edge of Awakening. One glance from pure seeing brings Awareness of the Freedom which has always been, newly recognized and eager to be explored.

We might reel in the discovery of our level of dependence on others and the conditioned ways we’ve related with friends, family and the people around us. We might see how we’ve “used” others to validate our sense of self. We may see how we’ve manipulated to gain attention or affection. We might realize we’ve used force, violence, or angry demands to ensure we get
our way.

We see how we fear abandonment and rejection and beg, plead, cling, feign or lie. We notice the ego’s strategies to hold others close and our attempts to gain control. We might be shocked to see the ways we’ve avoided feeling our darkest fear of being alone, the fear of loneliness and separation. We are emotionally maturing and spiritually expanding.

We may discover the many ways the ego ensures abandonment won’t happen. We might maintain the status quo in unfulfilling relationships/friendships because at least it’s better than being alone. We may boost ourselves with facebook friend counts although we rarely communicate more than a few “hey, what’s up’s’/happy birthday. We can fill our spare time with binge-watching movies to feel involved in a virtual community. We could over-invest in social activities that leave us burned out. We might fill our home with pets to replace the closeness with family or friends we’ve “lost” along the way. We may turn on the tv, the radio, music, news to fill our living space with “people sounds” even when we’re not really interested, we just need it so being alone doesn’t creep into Awareness. So innocent is so much suffering.

We’re innocently searching for connection and the mind searches “out there”. We’ve temporarily lost our Awareness of Who We Are, the deepest connection with All. We’re desperately afraid of the emptiness we feel inside, so we cover this seeming void with distraction.

We’ve had and continue to have so many opportunities to be in the company of others. People are everywhere. So is nature, so are plants, rocks, grass and animals. The problem isn’t opportunity. The problem isn’t “them”. The trouble-maker is the ego which judges, criticizes and misinterprets every contact and interaction. The thinking egoic mind and its collection
of past pain gets in the way. Next time we’re out running errands, we can check witness this for ourselves.

Observe the thinking mind as it comes into contact with others. Listen for the negativity it generates. Count the thoughts which judge, criticize, or assume in some light that is less than complimentary. It may be a surprise, to see how fear and separation are “affirmed” by egoic mind upon every contact with another human being. The ego is simply doing “its job” to maintain separation and stoke the fire of fear.

Whatever ego can define, it holds itself separate, “not me”, “I’m” this but not that.” Ego cannot join, it can only stand against. We, however, do join, for the unlimited freedom of That Which We Are turns nothing away. Being can find Itself in everything and sees everything as Itself.

Watch how the ego defends, attacks and runs its program of warfare. See how believing these thoughts affect our behavior: the smile we don’t give; the hug we refuse to fully embrace; the compliment we don’t give nor do we really “let in” if it’s offered to us; the sharpness to our tone of voice; the side-ways glance we give (the look); the way we bristle and speak abruptly; the air of suspicion through which we view the interaction; the sigh of sarcasm and the roll of the eyes; the curses under our breaths.
The strategies of warfare are many; we not only pay the inner price of losing our sense of peace but we lose sight of our connectedness, our Oneness, our Hearts hurt.

Be gentle as these come into Awareness, this is innocent ignorance and there’s no need for blame, guilt, nor shame.
Just seeing the cause-and-effect chain of events is enough. This is mental illness within the context of social interaction,
for the ego is insane. This negativity robs us of the recognition of inherent preciousness, intrinsic worth and our root essence
as unconditional love. This ages the body, depletes our energy level and compounds the backlog of our pain-body’s burning resentment. We miss the fountain of goodwill available in our hearts because of the incessant monologue of the ego’s insanity in our heads.

“But what can we do about it, we can’t just wish the ego away”. This is true, the ego is part of human conditioning and it need not go away. It just needs to be recognized, this is the step out of warfare; this unplugs our emotions from its strong grip and lessens the collateral damage.

Would we believe the thought that we’re pink-and-purple polka-dotted hippos? We would laugh at this thought and it would go away just like it had appeared; it might even be surrounded by the cushion of peace which comes with good-natured humor.
But how do we hold onto the negative judgments that spring to mind when we’re in the company of another person?
Can we allow them to pass with a tiny smile of recognition of the ego’s silliness? Can we find the field of Unity as Being?

How often are we in the company of someone else in silence? How often do we spend time with eachother simply being?
What usually happens is that two minds are “minding” - while bodies are doing. Mind is running the interaction. When what
we believe are “our” thoughts meet agreement by the other person, we are “getting along”. When thoughts disagree,
we experience conflict. Mind is meeting mind rather than the spaciousness of That Which We Are, our truest essence of formless beingness.

One spiritual practice is to ground in the Present Moment as one’s essence of being-ness while meeting another person
from that field of alert Awareness. Allowing what words arise while focusing on the spaciousness from which breath comes, envelopes the interaction in peace.

When a reply comes out of the mouth from Being-ness, it often surprises us with its tenderness, gentleness and on-target timeliness. We’re awed by Its skillfulness in both context and content. Genuine unconditional love speaks without egoic agenda. Disagreement, coming from Being, is free from warfare. A fact is spoken and all outcome is released. Even a “no”
to a request coming from Being is kind, considerate and very wise.

This field of being-ness offers no conflict for it accepts and allows. The egoic mind has not gone away, it is transcended in that moment. While being included within Beingness, ego can no longer dictate nor control the interaction. When everyone with whom we interact is met with the peace of Being, where is separation? Where is fear? Where is loneliness?

Consider why we enjoy being surrounded by nature. A walk focuses the mind on the breath and the senses. Eyes drink in the scenery, the nose soaks up woodsy odors, the skin registers sensations of warmth and cold, the body balances then steps forward. The egoic mind becomes quiet when Present Moment Awareness is primary. Relief, sweet relief from the spinning of thinking mind. There’s no argument with the tree, the flower, the bird, they simply arise in appreciative wonder and joy. Nature gives us a direct experience, the gift of being led into Presence, being-ness.

The next time we feel lonely, we can choose to either fire-up the engine of thinking mind which seeks someone’s company
to “mind-with” or we can enter Presence. We can meet another person from our being-ness and observe the gifts the interaction brings. The gift we’re giving is the same as Nature, we are sharing being-ness. Sharing the mind through “minding” cannot compare. Minding’s benefits wear off quickly for validation, praise and agreement must constantly be renewed through another person. Being is unlimited and always available within each of us; Being is shared in silence even if words appear and disappear.

Sharing being-ness strengthens Presence for all involved. It’s the gift which when shared, multiplies, without depletion. Presence or being-ness is received as and while it is given. The bible mentions in Luke 6:38: “Give and it shall be given to you.” Offering Presence is to receive Presence. This is where giving and receiving become One.

Science mentions our bodies receive a “hit” of the pleasure hormone dopamine when we give gifts. In some psychology circles it’s encouraged to give what you wish most to receive (if you want appreciation, give appreciation). Watch how it feels to give from Presence, from your essence of being-ness. Can the union between you and the other be felt more strongly than separation? Is there a calming Certainty felt more deeply than thinking mind’s fearfulness? Does the chattering negativity of ego calm down?

When we’re in touch with the deepest Truth of Who We Are, we’re tapping into all of the qualities we most want
from human connection: Peace, Joy, Unconditional Love, Certainty, Power, Connection, Unity, Generosity, Kindness, Goodness, Gentleness, Honor. These flow from being and when given, multiply. In the fullness of Presence, where can loneliness abide? Loneliness can only “live” within the depleted state, cut-off from our own hearts and essence, our well-spring of Being-ness.

The photo at the top of this article shows a candle offered in open hands. This week, could we imagine each interaction with another person to be our offering of Light, from the Unconditional Love We Are, given freely-openly-willingly? We offer Presence. We share from the fullness of our Being-ness.

We can observe how this affects the ego’s interpretation of loneliness and separation through our direct experience of Connectedness through Being.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

If It's Falling Apart...Let it Fall

It’s normal for the human thinking mind to try to juggle Life to keep all of its “spinning plates” spinning.
Humans in doing-mode, driven by busy minds, want to keep those plates in the air to keep the momentum
going and have nothing change. This takes a lot of time, energy and effort.

In the world of objects and forms, there is change. Change for a spinning plate might mean a stumble, jostle or slip
which disrupts momentum, allowing the plate to drop, fall and break into pieces on the floor. Whatever we were doing
is interrupted, our project collapses, our way of doing things might no longer be possible. We’re faced with the unforeseen circumstances of change.

The human mind resists the changes which arise. “What If” fears flood our confused minds.
Disappointment and frustration come as the desire to hold-on meets the realization that this change
might mean we cannot move forward in the same direction, operate in the same way nor continue along
the path we’d been traveling.

Every “spin” started in the past. Imagine spinning a basketball on your finger. It took an action, now in the past,
which started the basketball’s spinning momentum. If we want the basketball to continue to spin, we must push
against it, again and again. Spinning needs repetition of the past action to keep it going. This is the natural course
of interaction between objects and forms in our physical world. The thinking mind needs repetition of its past,
a renewal of its past, to drive its momentum.

Part of the mystery of Life is the “when and the why” spinning objects stop and momentum ends. It may feel unfair
for things to end while we’re still enjoying them. We feel disappointed with unanswered questions of “but why”.
If we cannot restart the momentum, we feel confused. “Now what?” We’re faced with not knowing what to do once
this specific type of “doing” ends. The thinking mind can no longer find its path, it cannot see from starting point A
to its end goal of point B. Fear arises. The thinking mind can become frantic in its search for new end goals,
the next replacement of “what”. It can become obsessed with choosing various starting points and planning new
pathways of “how to get back to what.” “But how?!!!,” it demands.

This is the time to stop, to step back, to breathe.

2022 is a time of uncertainty. The Pandemic brought the spinning to a stop and plates crashed to the ground.
We may have lost our earning momentum. We might have lost our goals for achievement in career. We may have
lost our perception of personal power or sense of direction as plans fell by the wayside. We may have lost loved ones
and are facing change to the structure of our family units. We might struggle as we redefine the receiving and giving
of social support. We might no longer be able to gather as before in ways we enjoyed our social interaction.
We may struggle with health/medical bills, aging, employment, or housing.

We may feel the blanket of distress in the universal emotional field of mankind and suffer the collective anxiety as
nervousness building within our spiritual bodies. Our economy is changing, the structures around employment are
changing. Upheaval is a word which fits massive change on all levels within the world of humanity. This is no little thing
and we’re not going crazy. We are facing change.

The infinite details to which Life attends would easily swamp a tiny, human mind and the egoic part of mind fears
not being in control of what it thought was “its universe”. Disruption to the human dream, the doing mind’s goals,
can feel unwelcome, unwanted, a pain in the ass, a punishment, a block or obstruction in our path towards progress.
We suffer as we hold onto the ego’s “wants” while the ego resists arising change. We don't want a "new" normal.
Our schedules have been interrupted, our accomplishments have been delayed, our patterns and routines of normal have ground to a halt.. “But…why, how, what, when, where…” the ego questions in reactive resistance to the request from Life
to stop, to be still, to wait, to BE rather than to DO.

Looking at our daily schedule through the eyes of balance, what is our measure of our being in comparison to our doing?
When we sit, are our minds still doing-thinking, planning, watching a program? Do we rest when our body stops or do we collapse?

Just for today, can we set aside 15 minutes to sit with a warm cup of our favorite beverage and just rest? Just “switch off”.
No phone, no pen and paper, no electronic device, just be. Watch the mind spin without being pulled in. This will be easier
if we’ve chosen a spot outdoors, surrounded by nature. Observe the birds, listen to the sounds without following the mind's attempts to build a story around the sounds. Listen for the moment of Spaciousness from which each sound is birthed
and into which each sound “dies”. This gap, this space, is the ground of Being.

Feel the internal arising of mind’s momentum as it builds in an effort to move you from your chair. “But, I need to do….”. Breathe, deeply, stay still and allow it to pass, this is only fifteen precious minutes. Witness the inner struggle as mind
builds and falls, spins and slows, attaches to thoughts and lets go. Observe the self-soothing desires arise to watch
a movie, read a book, call someone on the phone, eat something, workout, take a nap. These are the patterns mind
has used to avoid the Present moment. Don’t judge, just see and breathe.

If we follow this “precious 15” for a week, we will begin to notice the imbalance of thinking mind. We will begin to recognize
why we are so tired; the mind's following of thought consumes much energy; doing takes great effort. The more deeply
we dip into Being, the more balanced our Doing becomes. Life will guide our way towards greater balance. Life will support
our tiny openness to be shown the way forward through the changes we face. Willingness is the current which powers the
inner generator of Life force which is of immense strength which the thinking mind cannot comprehend.

What if more could be accomplished by Being rather than Doing? What if the quality of doing- arising-from-beingness is
far superior and more encompassing in range than we’ve ever actively witnessed? What if inherent unconditional
love is ready to flow through new channels to replace the dying ways of fear, worry and discontent? What if our growth
is overtaking the dying conditioning to which we’ve been chained for so very long? Would we not wish to experience
every moment of unfolding sweetness rather than be distracted by the off-kilter spinning of conditioned mind?

“But, what about…?” I know, I too, hear conditioned mind’s questioning, for it simply does what it does and knows not
what it cannot know. We’ve gone this route so many times before. Can we rest, during this time called “change” to witness
our own unfolding? What a treasure this moment, even if it feels like “waiting”, can we dive deeply into this moment
and leave the mind behind -just for an instant- for one loving glimpse of Freedom?

How does fear hi-jack Awareness of our beingness? “I can’t possibly stop such and such because…what if?”
Is thinking mind struggling to hold onto the pattern of the past rather than waiting for guidance, for the arrival
of a new direction? “But, I don’t want to lose…” What of the gain, here-Now, of abundance unrecognized?

Look to this Now moment, how are we supported? Is there a floor holding a foundation beneath our feet?
Is there a chair supporting our body? Are there clothes keeping our bodies warm? Is there one bite of food to sustain
our body’s energy? Is there one sip of liquid to quench the thirst arising now? “Yeah, but that stuff doesn’t really matter,
what if…..?”

The spiritual teacher Byron Katie says “if you want a little fear and terror, get a future”. Thinking mind always escapes
the present into a fearful story it calls the future or it dives into pain it remembers from the past. The egoic mind lives
by past/future, only our Being-ness delights in the Present moment, recognizing the gift of Itself.

Spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle mentions, “sometimes letting things go is an act of far greater power than defending
or hanging on.” We are that courageous. We are this power. The fearful human mind doesn’t want to let go for it fears
failure and sees threat to survival. What if there is no failure and survival is a matter of perspective?

Have we survived so far? Are we surviving Now? How many times have we faced danger and with no independent action
of our own, have we survived? Can we say that survival happens? “But there are people who didn’t survive…
and that is horrible.” Can we really know, absolutely without a shred of doubt, that this is true? Have there ever been times when we felt physical death might just be merciful or even beneficial? Can we really know what is of the utmost greatest goodwill for someone else?

If we are here, we are surviving and this is meant to be…until it’s not. Can we rest in the safety of our own Being-ness
without allowing egoic mind to cloud seeing with panic and distress? Have you ever watched a nature program such as
National Geographic and observed a squid, in the ocean, as it leaves an ink-trail when startled by a predator?
This defense mechanism confuses the predator so the squid has a split-second to reach a cave or crevice within which
to hide, to achieve its “get-away” to instinctively maintain physical survival.

The thinking mind “squirts fear trails” to escape the Present moment. In this Present Moment there is no real risk nor real predator. A Course in Miracles says, "Nothing real can be threatened, nothing unreal exists." The bible mentions, "Fear Not."

The Present Moment is a way to focus attention on the Awareness aspect of mind which matures, strengthens, expands
during spiritual Awakening. This is an inner embrace of Life. When thinking mind turns attention outwards, it attaches
to physical objects in physical life and is no longer aware of the inner dimension of Being-ness. When we hear the word
stop, we might mistake stopping for physical stopping, for stopping all “outer” action in the world. “I won’t eat, I won’t talk,
I won’t move” is an exaggeration of the misunderstanding of inner/outer awareness.

We can “stop” on the inside while we observe the outer aspect of Life continuing, including the movement of our body
and the thought processes of mind. The more we practice tuning into the Present moment and sitting in Stillness,
we begin to discern the subtleties of our “inner/outer” dimensions. We can watch our physical life-form without being
caught up in the egoic identification with a personal “self”. We begin to see ourselves as consciousness which includes
our physical form without thinking we are only the physical form.

The Consciousness of Which We Are includes experiences of multi-dimensionality, simultaneously. Expansion during Awakening brings this Awareness to our attention in richer ways than we could have ever imagined. We will miss it,
if we’re embroiled in the momentum of thinking mind. No opportunity is ever wasted, it will come, again, yet these are
available for direct experience, any time the mind is quiet.

If we’ve ever wondered, what is physical earth life, the life of the human all about, “what is this life for?”, the Present Moment
is the spaciousness in which this answer is revealed. A specific way for each of us to comprehend is offered-according to our recognition of our own essence. Don’t let any words bother nor concern you. There is part of you which understands, even without the use of words as descriptors for language. This part is what speaks, what listens, what comprehends,
is aware and That which Knows. This is what reveals Itself in stillness, inner stillness, through Awareness which can be
aided temporarily by achieving outward stillness, such as in the “precious 15” minutes of stillness surrounded by the being-ness dimension anchored by nature.

If we’re willing to “stop” on the inside, the slowing down, stopping or new direction for the “outside” will take care of Itself.
The inner stopping allows us to face Awakening with less fear, less chaos, less drama, less discontent, less suffering.
Open willingness is cooperating with the expansion of the consciousness of which we are, called Awakening, as a return movement of recognition of all of the inherent qualities of our being-ness: Unconditional Love, unshakable Peace,
uncaused Joy and unfathomable Wisdom.

Isn’t this what we hoped earth things and human life accomplishments would bring?
These have never been absent, only hidden, beneath the “fear-squirt trail” of egoic mind.

If it feels as though our earth-life “plates” are falling and crashing to the ground, we can let them fall.
We accept the opportunity to watch the process of our True Being unfold. We allow plates to break.
We become willing to sweep up the pieces, throw them out and wait for direction. We open to change
as the arising of the new. We allow the death of old ways which no longer serve wellness.

New direction might emerge which thinking mind judges or interprets negatively. Sit with it, allow whatever arises
and give time for things to “shake out” and “settle”. The egoic mind will misinterpret and judge and cause itself to suffer.
Let this arise and pass. As we step onto new pathways, we might not see the “end” and wonder what we’re doing.
Allow the uncertainty without judging nor interpreting. Deep inside, we Know what feels true and we have the courage
to take each step which comes. This is the walk of faith many religions describe, allowing consciousness to act even
while thinking mind does not understand.

Awareness will bring the encouragement and the recognition that intellectual comprehension plays but a tiny part
in the expansion of That Which We Are. The body will survive or it will not, aspects of the human dream will die or continue,
yet We Are, simply and eternally. All we need know will be revealed in just the right timing for the unconditionally loving wisdom of beingness will take care of doingness.

We can rest in Freedom, even in the midst of change.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Unlocking Capability

How many times have we wanted to do something but we didn't try; we were too afraid we'd fail?
We might think that fear is powerful, yet the power of our belief is that which is mighty.
Where we invest belief is what shapes the outcome that we reap.

How might we know the range of our capability unless we make an attempt? Is perfectionism serving us well
or has it become an obstacle to testing our skills, trying new activities, or experiencing new outcomes?
Would we be as intolerant and critical of our best friend's performance as we are when we listen to the inner criticism
within our heads? How might we offer ourselves courtesy and support as we navigate life challenges?

The one thing we can adjust when faced with a challenge is our perspective. If we are practicing the acceptance
of What Is and are consciously staying Present, then we will not resist what arises in the Present moment.
We will ask, deep inside, how might I reframe this obstacle as a challenge of discovery aimed towards my greatest good?

This approach will end any past habits of blaming and complaining. The thinking mind is re-focused to engage with What Is,
to be open to creative solutions. The realm of infinite possibility cannot be fathomed by the thinking mind. That's why the
doubts and negativity flood our attention, the challenge has no successful past precedent. Yet, we are in the Present,
the place of pure Potential.

As we befriend fear and allow the doubts to pass, the remaining Spaciousness of Potential within our very Being is waiting
to be tapped for the pure discovery of our inherent capability. We are ready, open and willing to discover the gift of the
power of creation. An open mind is a courageous, capable, cooperative, creative mind. We might discover new talents;
improve our native skill-sets; gain new information to increase our learning which widens our knowledge base; we might
experience new outcomes and find new avenues for service or contribution.

Our past efforts may have come from fear, survival, lack, shame but they hold no bearing on our Present unless we
continue to rekindle our belief in them. Each intake of fresh new breath is our new beginning.

This week, we can allow ourselves the gift of expansion by granting permission to rediscover capability. We can transform
fear by asking: is it true? Can I really not do "such and such"? "How do I know, have I tried?" "Am I listening to the past
or am I embracing the Present?" "If I were to believe that I will learn something beneficial no matter the outcome,
how might I proceed?" Willingness allows the benefit of creative effort to manifest. When we learn something new
or increase in skill, we become Unconditional Love’s outlet to flow through us, to serve and contribute to our world.

Awakening is creative, Consciousness is becoming Conscious of Itself. Capability is an intrinsic part of the discovery;
beliefs are waiting to be unlocked. Will we open to receive and pay forward the benefits of our direct experience
of expanding capabilities?

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Befriending Fear

As we awaken spiritually, our Awareness sharpens. What would have slipped by unnoticed in our unconscious past is seen more readily. We notice contractions within emotional energy, we more keenly experience fluctuations. We become more sensitively attuned to temporary departures from our center of inner balance.

We notice the arising of vibrational energy including seemingly polarized extremes such as bliss and fear. We might ripple
with joy one week only to have mysterious shudders of terror to follow the next week. We might wonder, "What is going on?
I thought I'd have only Peace if I opened to spiritual Awakening?"

Awakening affects all "bodies" comprising the human experience: mental, emotional, physical and spiritual. We might be new
to the experience of feeling fully the entire range of human emotion. We might have backlogs of suppressed negative emotional energy.

Remember the silver lining that is often discovered after going through tough times? This is no mistake nor coincidence.
This is Wisdom arising following expansion. Regardless of the "why", we can trust the Awakening process to clear obstructions and process/integrate what's needed for the expansion of consciousness.

Psychology, counseling and mental health advocacy encourage us to face fears, to use gentle exposure, habituation, familiarity and adaptation to reprogram our nervous systems' response to fearful stimuli. The way out of fear is through fear.

During Awakening, the pure Wisdom of our Transcendental nature will guide our journey through fear. Awareness may flash intuitively that we need some help, we might seek out a counselor. We might be guided to start a meditation or mindfulness practice. We may feel drawn to crystals, gemstones or aromatherapy. We may use weighted blankets for self-soothing support as we work through extreme anxiety. Some people might chant, pray aloud, practice tai chi or walking meditation.
Regardless of the outer form our practice takes, moving through fear is the inner "yes” to What Is once fear arises.

We can direct thinking mind through inner Stillness. Contemplative thought will offer questioning to our Beingness which communicates in Silence. We might discern the pattern where egoic contractions are immediately followed by extension
and growth. We feel encouraged, hopeful and courageous. The undoing of egoic beliefs is a mighty process,
one for which we are divinely prepared. The process is perfectly designed. We need not know how nor why
for thinking mind is not in control. Inherent perseverance will carry us through Awakening and deepen our Certainty
that even this tough moment is part of All That is Well.

How can we cooperate with Awakening during an experience of fear? By simply being open and willing.
The tiniest sliver of willingness is more than enough for the Power of Which We Are to move through fear.
Eckhart Tolle describes the ego as "an insubstantial phantom which cannot prevail against the power of Presence."

We can try this for ourselves the next time fear arises. Step out into nature, and sit within the fear. Be still yet alert, stay open and willing. Observe and breathe. The fear will not kill the body. The ego will scream "I can’t take this!"; be willing and open
to even this, breathe, breathe, breathe.

Watch the ego's defense system attempt to mobilize. See the arising desire to avoid, to run away.
Watch for addictive impulses and avoidance strategies to kick in (wanna spend, gotta eat, gotta drive,
gotta smoke, wanna snort, gotta drink, wanna workout, gotta leave, need to repress, wanna run and hide).
"Hold them" within Awareness without acting them out. Let them arise and just watch without judging, without indulging,
without criticizing nor interpreting, just breathe.

No matter how real thoughts and feelings appear to be, they are energy forms, subtle contractions which will explode into Awareness and then dissipate. Just allow, accept, keep breathing. Nothing has to be "done" in this moment, no decisions
need to be made in this moment, watch and wait in inner Stillness. If thinking egoic mind bombards us with thoughts just open to silent curiosity, "ah, I hear this thought, what next?" Each movement will begin, build, surge, peak, decline and dissolve.

This is psychological birth and death. "We" aren’t at risk and aren't going anywhere. Just be Present with each "thing"
which arises, an emotion, a thought, a physical sensation...look for the space around each "thing or object". Breathe.
This is Awareness-as-You, Spacious Beingness, within which thought, emotion, physical sensations arise.

Have you ever looked at a painting which concealed a hidden message? Remember how you stared at the image and waited? Once your vision shifted, you could clearly see the message that wasn't visible just minutes before.

While fear is experienced, we can refocus the mind by our asking, "where is peace right now"; "where is unconditional love right now?"; where is WellBeing right now?" Don't answer with the thinking mind, just wait and breathe. Waiting for Peace, Unconditional Love or WellBeing allows them to reveal their presence. They will come without words, for they are beyond thinking mind. They will respond with Certainty upon our invitation.

Doubtful thoughts may flood in, let them come while paying no attention to them. Keep breathing and wait patiently for Peace, Unconditional Love, WellBeing, Certainty-As-You to arise in Awareness. Awakening opposes nothing. Awakening works with all structures and systems. Psychology tells us that the emotional flooding of the fight or flight responss takes 20 minutes for adrenaline from a stress reaction to work its way through our body.

Awakening cooperates even with this system. Keep breathing, stay vigilant, open in earnest. Fear will peak and dissolve.
It only takes one successful "sitting through" of a surge of fear to reveal the oasis-like mirage which fear represents.
Catch the glimmer of Peace, WellBeing or Unconditional Love as it begins Its flow. Awareness will see the tiny first shimmer
and we will catch it. Watch it build, expand, extend. See the gentle way which fear is surrounded and "held" without force
nor rejection. Watch as fear is met and joined, find the gap of space around the fear. Breathe deeply.
Very quickly, Certainty will be all which remains.

Thinking mind's memory can recall the prior fear but there will no longer be any emotional charge. This Awareness, Peace, Unconditional Love, WellBeing is our Being nature - within which -fear arose and dissolved. Each revisit by fear will be met
by Presence through inner Stillness. Fear's density and intensity will decrease even more quickly with the Light of Awareness “seeing through it”. Befriending fear in the Now it arises through Presence is our new normal. Suffering cannot perpetuate
in this climate of acceptance, it can only yield to the union with That Which We Are.

Fear is befriended, its energy is transformed into the expansion and extension of Who We Are. This is the power of Presence, its union with all of that which arises and its remaining as all forms dissolve. This Certainty is the transcendence of thinking or egoic mind. Our true nature, no longer clouded by dense egoic fog, is experienced deeply and directly.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Relief from Complaining's Cry of Powerlessness

The Awakening process is undertaken with the greatest of courage. It is courageous to look directly at thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, to face suffering, fear, the arising of the ego while peering over the edge of the unknown.

Awakening is the time for conditioned mind-emotional patterns, egoic patterns, to intensify. As denial cracks, the ego’s dysfunctional status quo is rocked. As Awareness expands and sharpens, there will be less tolerance to continue doing the same ole thing, the same old way. Although this is good news, change is on the horizon, fear will arise because the ego mind only knows how to do the same ole things in the same old ways. Turbulence arises as ego asserts yet cannot fully mobilize because Awakening’s change has arrived.

This is the time when the old pattern of complaining becomes intolerant. Awareness recognizes how painful complaining is,
how much suffering is generated. We might recognize an aspect of childhood pain, the yearning for unconditional love which
we thought could only come from the outside source of our parents. We might see how this dependent child state is still active in our adulthood, demanding “others” remove our pain by fulfilling our assumed unmet needs.

If past childhood pain is not a motivator, we might simply become aware of inner turmoil. Recognition may dawn that egoic mind is arising. We watch ego attempt to control life events. We watch ego, hungry with desire, grasp for things which cannot truly satisfy nor bring long-term, unchanging peace. Awakening uses whatever perception exists for expanding comprehension needed for the next step of expansion. Relief is on the way.

Suffering is simply what humans go through during unconsciousness, it’s what the ego-the misunderstood mind-does.
It recoils from pain, misunderstands the longing for Wholeness, it goes outwards to search for satisfaction and fulfillment.
It misunderstands, it stomps, throws tantrums, cries and complains. These are the growing pains of expansion, the transition from unconsciousness to consciousness.

Why does egoic mind complain? What else can an innocent mind under the influence of misunderstanding do?
The egoic mind suffers in ignorance. We can look at ego’s misunderstandings and compassionately see why suffering exists:

A) “Pain is scary, needs to be avoided, covered up, removed, or gotten ‘rid of’; it is of no benefit”
B) “Happiness will bring peace and this desired object/thing will give me happiness!
I need ‘it’ so finally I can have peace!”
C) “Outside, that’s the place to find ‘it’, that’s the direction to go, ‘outside’ is where to find ‘it’!
D) “Oh no, here come feelings of vulnerability and powerless, they must be real! Who feels these feelings, ‘I’ do, so ‘I’ must be vulnerable, ‘I’ must be powerless.”
E) “Pain is here so ‘others’ must be responsible for causing it;
‘they’ can/should/must do something/or change so ‘I’ can feel peaceful.”

Awakening’s intensification of complaining breaks open its very momentum. We realize we are suffering, we see complaining
to be causing our suffering, we realize it’s attempts to bring peace simply don’t work. We surrender the pattern. We open.
We yield. Awareness dawns to reveal both the illusion of control and the victim mindset fueled by powerlessness spearheads complaining. Perhaps for the first time we might wonder, am I truly powerless? Is powerlessness real? Who am I? Who or what feels powerless?

There may be words, there may be no words but there will be a dawning or recognition of struggle, of fighting, of resistance, some impediment blocking Life’s flow. The fire of curiosity is lit: what is this struggle, why is there a battle, who is battling,
I feel resistance, resistance to what?... Deep internal questioning signals receptivity, the pattern of momentum is interrupted. Awakening cannot resist willingness and will move with comforting guidance.

Every complaint is resistance to What Is. The ego’s fight for control is on, it desires to change Life-as-What-Is.
We can check our own experience: at the heart of each complaint, where is the resistance to What Is? We can investigate
any negative emotion - where is the resistance to What Is?

If jealousy is present, there is a fight to “have” what the ego mind sees “out there” which it fears it does not have “here”.
If anger is present, ego mind resists What Is by using demand+force to change What Is.
If sadness is present, ego mind resists What Is by pulling away using hopelessness and despair.
If grief is present, contracted defense resists in the attempt to hold What Is at bay, “stay over there”.
Criticism resists through the attempt to destroy What Is through denigration while attempting to “get” what is wanted instead.
If rage or aggressiveness arises, force is the resistance used to overcome What Is through dominance.
If fear is present, withdrawing, freezing, fawning passively resists What Is.

The root of complaint’s desire to resist What Is holds a thought which says “I can’t do this”, “I don’t want this”, “I can’t handle this”, “I won’t accept this”, “I’m not doing this”, “I won’t/I can’t/I don’t”. A victim arises to resist What Is by refusing what Life offers. Ego mind, innocently ignorant, misunderstands Life’s gifts/blessings to be unwanted, incomplete, not enough, not right, threatening, boring, etc. None of these fights for control through resistance are wrong, they simply “hurt”, they causes suffering.

When we find a complaint’s resistance to What Is, we can look deeper to find complaint’s belief in powerlessness, fear or separation. “Where is the fear? What is the fear? Where is the belief in powerlessness? Where is there a victim belief?
Am I separate? Can I find where power is projected “outside” onto someone or something else? Is there a perceived unmet need? Is it true that this need is unmet? Is this need really not provided right here, right now in this Present Moment?

Gardeners know that snipping the top few inches of a weed will not accomplish the task of weeding. They know they need to dig deeply to pull the weed out of the ground from its root. This is the way to weed so weeds don’t grow back. Fear lies at the root of complaints for fear creates powerlessness. We can trace any negative emotion back to its creator, Fear – in the form of a fearful thought. We can trace the fearful thought back to its creator - a personal “me”. We can trace the “me” sense of powerlessness to the fear that “lack” exists in the form of an assumed need that is going unmet. We can discover what we thought was missing is here right now.

Without fear, where is powerlessness? Without fear, where is separation between a “me” and “other”? Without powerlessness, what remains but the Inherent Power of the Truth of Who We Are? All roads lead back to the Source, whether it’s through emotion, thought or action.

Letting go of our belief victimhood and powerlessness feels like letting go of the cracking branch to which we’ve desperately clung, as our feet swayed in mid-air and our body dangled over the edge of a cliff. What remains is feared …a fall.
The fall is to look directly into fear without turning away. The fall is nothing else but facing fear without resisting.

Victimhood is an innocent reluctance and unwillingness to face the pain and fear driving resistance to What Is. We project the “cause” of our pain/fear onto someone or something “outside” of ourselves whom we then attack. If we did not believe in the powerlessness of a “me”, where is the “survival” that is feared to be at stake?

We trade our inherent Divine Empowerment for fear. We’ve imprisoned ourselves. We’ve limited ourselves. We’ve mistakenly believed in vulnerability, in powerlessness. Ego then blames others or situations for “having done it to us”; having made “me” vulnerable and powerless. We deny the ego’s accountability, the innocent ignorant belief in fear, separation and powerlessness.

For a while, this denial feels satisfying. The attack of blame feels powerful to ego’s powerlessness. The seeming cleverness of deceit, manipulation, deception, mischief, sabotage and all egoic defensive strategies are designed to feel powerful to the victim-mindset and become a source of pride for the martyr. Like any addiction, victimhood, once pleasurable, becomes unbearably painful.

We wake up along the way, we realize complaining is not righteous, is not powerful, is not clever, is not justice, is not
strength but a cry of powerlessness. This is the equivalency of spiritual infancy, where we’ve assumed that our needs
are unmet. We innocently believe the illusion that attempts to exert control are not only necessary but possible.

If we were to let go of “who did it to us”, we might realize we have mistakenly believed in powerlessness and this belief has created a “victim”. Divine Power has been traded for fear. By believing in the illusion of powerlessness and its illusion of control, a “me” -as the innocently ignorant misunderstood aspect of mind called ego- has created a “victim” and the crushing weight of suffering is upon us.

This will be quite a shock to realize that we have suffered without true cause. To realize no one and no thing is to blame, not others, not events, not even “ourselves”. We see the desire to be in control and realize, finally, control is the illusion which supports powerlessness. Courage arises buoyed by magnificent Power. We face the fear of not being in control, never having been in control and never being able to control anyone nor anything, not even the experience of the ego’s projection
of a false self, a “me” which we ‘ve mistakenly called “ourselves”.

We face surrender, we choose to fall, to yield to That Which Is. Ego will surely counter, asserting that surrender is weakness,
that surrender is death, that yielding is letting down the defensive guard which holds annihilation at bay. Attempts of illusory control may try to return. Complaining, like all egoic strategies, may continue until its momentum is spent, yet they no longer hold a “full charge” and can no longer be fully believed. Attention will no longer be pulled completely into complaining’s momentum.

Awareness will “see clearly” , remain detached, to watch the complaint with neutral observation. Awareness will see the negative emotion, will find the negative thought, will discern the fear, will find the mistaken belief of an unmet need, will disbelieve powerlessness. Awareness will awaken to Its Inherent Power.

Unconditional Love, the Truth of Who Are will inform Awareness that surrender is simply opening to receive the Power from the Truth of Who We Are as Unconditional Love. This is when spiritual infancy lays down the toys of childhood to step into maturity. Awareness reveals That which cannot ever be victimized. The nightmares of spiritual childhood, full of monsters and zombies are seen to be dreams.

The illusions of survival and unmet needs felt to be true, believed by a false powerless “self” mistaken to be a “me” are revealed to be an innocent error, a misunderstanding of temporary ignorance…nothing more. Relief has come.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Oneness: The Direct Experience of Formless Being While Awakening

Awakening offers many tiny glimpses of One-ness during everyday life.
These small, quick openings are like looking through the tightest, tiniest aperture setting of a camera lens.

In these moments, Awareness sees with clear seeing. In this one moment, the thinking mind, egoic mind -is still, no thought,
no emotion. There is no remembrance of a physical body, no physical sensations register in the brain. There is a silent Stillness that is aware, alive, vivid and full of Life.

Whatever the body’s eyes had been focused upon (a person, a tree, an animal, a landscape) is temporarily transcended and
the separation between “ourselves” and the object viewed - dissolves. There arises a feeling of Oneness, deep unfathomable, uncaused peace and joy. The body might relax with a deep sigh.

In that moment, we directly experience the Truth of Who We Are, the Spacious Beingness, our True Identity as Essence.
These glimpses may pass without conscious recognition by the thinking mind, for ego mind’s passive use of denial is deeply patterned in its immediate rejection of unity. The opposite polarity might also occur, egoic mind may stir in active resistance
by quickly filling the Spaciousness with thoughts to renew the separate personal self of "me".

Whether recognition occurs or not, Oneness imprints upon the awakening consciousness of form.
The stirring of egoic mind reveals it has been invalidated by recognition of Oneness in that instant.

Perhaps we've experienced this many times before. Reflect on these times, now.
How would you describe the direct experience?

One person who’d taken psychedelic drugs said, “I realized everything was alive, everything was vibrating.
I could feel colors and smell sounds, there was no boundary between myself and everything I saw.”

A person who stood at the mountain’s summit at the end of her ascent said, “I felt at One with the entire universe,
it was like my body melted and I was just One with all of nature.”

A public speaker said, “I was speaking and it was like ‘I’ dissolved, my body was gone, but the words kept flowing
and it was if ‘I’ was floating, but there wasn’t a body and ‘my’ mind wasn’t mine, there was just intelligence talking.”

Without getting caught by the idea that our experiences have to match these descriptions, how would you describe the
direct experience? What did it feel like? Were there sensations? Was there a physical body? Was there a “me” personality? Was there any problem in that moment? Did a feeling component arise (Peace, Joy, Unconditional Love)?

Afterwards, was there a mental or emotional reaction as the egoic thinking mind rushed in to explain or resist the experience?

Common egoic reactions include fear:
“I felt like I was losing my mind, I became afraid.” ; “I thought maybe I’d had a seizure.” ;
“I was worried I was disappearing.” ; “There was nothing, it was like a black void.” ;
“I was afraid because I thought maybe I was dying.”

Other egoic reactions may come in the form of arguments:
“I guess ‘I’ just checked out for a second.” ; “It couldn’t have happened because it doesn’t make sense.” ;
“I must have fallen asleep for a second”.

Some egoic reactions may form as urgent attempts to define the direct experience of non-duality using the ego’s thought system of duality: “It was an out-of-body experience, ‘I’ left ‘my’ body.” ; “It was though ‘I’ was no longer here”; “It was like ‘I’ was invisible and ‘I’ became whatever ‘I’ looked at, ‘I’ took on its form and felt what ‘it’ felt, 'I' thought what ‘it’ thought.”

No reactions are wrong, they are simply thinking mind’s attempts to quantify/understand/explain what cannot be contained
in words or language. Just notice the conditioned patterns of thinking mind. We are not the conditioning, the conditioning patterns arise as an experience within Who We Are.

Language, by its nature, is an expression of duality, a subject followed by an object. “I” grabbed the “apple”.
There is this time of confusion during awakening as thinking mind’s duality is used to attempt to comprehend the non-duality
of direct experiences of Being.

Take heart, be comforted and encouraged. The Wisdom guiding Awakening is the perfect Interpreter. This Wisdom will
inform the intelligence aspect of thinking mind through expanded perception so that direct experience can be understood
and communicated using the duality of language and words.

How can we know this is so? If we gain comfort using religious references, we might remember the bible verse recording
Jesus' words in John 14:16: "I will pray to the Father, and he will give you another Counselor/Comforter, that he may be
with you forever."

If we prefer direct experience, we can remember the times we "just knew that we knew what we knew”,
even if we couldn’t explain nor “justify” it to anyone else. We simply were Certain without knowing how nor why.
Some call this Knowing by the label of Intuition or inner Wisdom, Inspiration or Clarity.

Regardless of what words we use to describe it, we have this direct experience of Knowing. This is the place through
which the Intelligence aspect of thinking mind is informed by That which is beyond the thinking mind’s egoic belief system.
This is the beginning of the shift from dependence upon thinking mind’s “evidence” to being informed from within our innermost depth of Knowing-ness.

If we're struggling with egoic thoughts The demanding concrete "proof", we can allow this inner conflict to arise without attempting to stifle it, repress it nor indulge it through further “thinking”. We can open to questions and “hold” them in Stillness, the quiet spaciousness within the depths of our Being or inner Heart.

There is no conflict in our innermost Being. Although the egoic mind or thinking mind cannot see Truth nor understand it...
We can.

An intentional practice used to experience the Spaciousness of Being is described by Eckhart Tolle as:
Feeling the inner energy field of the body by starting with our hands.

Take this moment to focus all attention on the hands. Eyes can be open or closed. Feel the energy coursing through the hands. Without moving, touching nor looking at your hands... how do you know your hands are "still there"? Can you feel their inner aliveness? Just watch in alert, aware Stillness without thinking. Can you feel the aliveness in other parts of your body?
This aliveness is our Being nature, our very existence beyond our physical form, That within which forms arise.

We can try another exercise:
As you are listening to someone speak, pay attention to the small gaps between their words.
Pay as much attention to the gaps of silence as you do to the sound of the words.

If no one is speaking, we can pay attention to the gaps of silence between the words which appear as thoughts within our mind.
If there are noises in the environment, we can intensely listen with every cell of the body to the point where the sound dies off into Silence. When another sound arises, watch for that moment this sound also dies or fades out into Silence.

These are direct experience of formless Being using the energy field of the inner body to "pull focus", (like a camera's aperture). Energy is removed from thinking mind and channeled through the physical senses to catch the glimpse of Life vibrancy beyond physical form.

Awakening is our opportunity to consciously realize our True Identity, our Being-Essence beyond our physical body
and to directly experience all of the Freedom and Peace this discovery entails.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Spiritual "spf"

Awareness Sees the Peeling Away of Egoic Layers of Perception

I was fishing from my kayak in the summer heat and I noticed the color of my legs (still shiny with ghostly-white) beginning
to give way to rosy pink. I remembered I'd failed to rub in sunscreen before I set out. I considered paddling back to shore
but the fishing bite was fire-hot and I chose to stay.

Today, the last remaining ruffled edges of the sunburn is peeling and fading away. I shake my head and laugh at the
ridiculous pull of the fishing's excitement which overrode my common sense to get out of the boiling sun.

I remind myself "it only happens once". In my mind's eye, I now see the tube of 70 spf sunscreen that is grab-ready in the top compartment of my kayak. As the Awakening process unfolds, our broadened perspective offers many opportunities to gently laugh about our past errors of egoic perception. We might realize that we're currently reacting to situations very differently
from our past, more peacefully, demonstrating greater emotional health.

We may remember our old reactions, the ways our conditioned patterns had fired without conscious choice, creating conflict
and drama for ourselves and others. Standing within our expanded spiritual perception, on the firm footing of newly-adjusted behaviors, we notice the peeling away of older layers of egoic perception. Awareness has deepened.

We may feel amazed about how far we've come, how much we've grown, how innocent our previous misunderstandings.
We may feel awed by Awakening's opening of the Heart.

Although human conditioning may continue, there is spaciousness, an unconditional acceptance of "this, too" -
the temporary egoic sunburn that will hurt, will peak, will give way to expansion. Awareness notices with deeper
understanding the conditioned patterns. We see-hear-heed the call to more quickly let go of ego mind's "tug",
it's pull...away from Peace.

Awakening, although fierce during purification, reveals Its gentleness. It offers yet another just-in-time lesson or reminder
of the way of Peace. Gratitude arises for the rebalancing influence of Awakening on emotional health. The mistakes which
come less frequently, the spinning momentum which slows down, the less frenzied and intense our drama.

With each expansion of the Heart, the ego's contractions ease. The return to Being is alive within as the Stillness, the Silence,
our "spiritual spf" to soothe the painful effects of ego's imbalanced use of the mind. Wondrous awe and growing appreciation for Awakening's gift of release from suffering fills the gap of dissolving ego.

With You as Awakening Unfolds
Photo Credit : Daoudi Aissa @ Unsplash

Awakenings' Humble Empowered Service

Awakening's Humble Empowered Service

Have you ever been rushing around and stepped through a doorway on your way to another room but snagged your shirt
on an exposed nail? Remember how you spun around, 180-degrees, as your momentum was redirected by being hung-up?

As Awakening intensifies and we experience shifts in our perception, old remnants of past fears spin us around.
They create questions from the egoic thinking mind which snag our attention as worries. The ego-mind’s momentum
pulls our attention away from "resting" in present moment Awareness.

"But... what am I supposed to be doing? I need to know my purpose, what am I supposed to choose?
Do I need to change my job? I need to know what to 'do'?"

The present moment, our very Beingness already Is. Awakening, the integration of our divinity or Being with our humanity,
is Life's purpose. In Awakening, our being and doing is becoming integrated through our active recognition of the Truth of Who We Are and through Its expression in form.

Awakening presents exactly what-to-do each day on the "doing"-level. Life situations need not be searched out,
they simply arise. Every arising life situation within the present moment is our chance to provide humble empowered service. No matter what might be our work or if we are currently without a "job". We are demonstrating and expressing That Which
We Are, through our body-mind form. Any unexpected life situation is our Awakening's opportunity presented at the
"doing-level" of the present moment, the "Being-level's" life purpose.

What about the customer outburst that happens while we're working? We didn't plan it, we couldn't have foreseen it
and our ego-mind surely doesn't want to experience it, yet this is arising in the present moment.

Another person's unconscious temper tantrum is partly-removed from our 1st person experience. It is our opportunity
to view unconsciousness as if it outside ourselves, like a 3-D learning challenge. We're offered the chance to witness
it with our Conscious Presence.

Eckhart Tolle:
"Somebody says something to you that is rude or designed to hurt. Instead of going into unconscious reaction
and negativity, such as attack, defense, or withdrawal, you let it pass right through you. Offer no resistance.
It is as if there is nobody there to get hurt anymore."

In the days of Jesus, his act of humbly washing the feet of others demonstrated the integration of his humble humanity
with his divinity. When we "see through" another's temper tantrum to be innocent unconsciousness, the ego's pain expressed through the temporary power of rage without our reacting in fear, condemnation, anger or disgust, we are washing the feet of others.

ACIM: "Those you do not forgive you fear. And no one reaches love with fear beside him; you need forgiveness of your
brother, for you will share in madness or in Heaven together."

As we remember times we've been overcome with pain and anger we "join" with the other, in the humanity of human emotion,
in the unconscious suffering of the human condition. When we recognize rage is covering up hurt, we acknowledge our own past pain. This could be called forgiveness. A Course of Love: "... to forgive all others for being as you are. They too cannot be separate..."

As we stay non-reactive, we stay attuned to our Beingness, fully in touch with peace that is present even in the midst of
seeming turmoil. We are demonstrating our divinity. As we focus on our breathing, the Peaceful Calm intensifies and
cannot but help to be felt by all in the vicinity. This grounding of the power of Presence sparks, boosts and stabilizes Consciousness in manifest form.

As we see the innocence of unconsciousness in the disgruntled customer, we're moved by the unconditional love
we feel for them. Byron Katie: "... when they see the innocence of their children, their parents, their partners,
they come to see their own innocence."

Eckhart Tolle: "...you realize deeply that nothing you ever did or that was ever done to you could touch, even in the slightest,
the radiant essence of who you are".

Right action might arise to flow through you in action, or you may be called to continue as the silent witness, holding the frequency of Awakened Consciousness. St Paul: “Everything is shown up by being exposed to the Light, and whatever is exposed to the Light itself becomes Light.”

This is the new inner-to-outer way of being-doing "daily life" which manifests through our Awakening.
Our attunement to the peace underlying every situation in the present moment is the unraveling of the ego-mind's
search for something “outside ourselves” in pursuit of "a future" to find happiness. The goal of the search, true peace,
is within, right here, right now.

This is Awakening's integration of our divinity and humanity. The next time worry pops up, wanting “to do”,
just remember: your Awareness in the present moment is as honorable and valuable as Jesus’ action of washing
the feet of others. Your humble empowered service is not only your offer, it is Who You Are - unconditional love,
expressing through form.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Am “I” Losing Control?

Am “I” Losing Control? A Confusing “Shift-Happens” Part of Awakening

As we Awaken, our egoic minds may spin and reel with the changes brought about by our spiritual growth.
Many thoughts may arise in the form of questions about our very sanity, “Am I losing control? Am I going crazy?
I have no idea, no clue, what’s happening, why am I so confused?”

This temporary confusion may feel uncomfortable, scary, intimidating, and unwanted.
To not-know is a place of great strength, one of tremendous openness. Can we become comfortable with not-knowing,
just for this moment? There is power in that gap of understanding as the old perception withers and the new, broader,
deeper, freer perception takes its place.

The human reaction to change is understandable. Think about a time when you’ve nearly lost your balance - how you
may have spun or jerked your body in counter-balance so you wouldn’t fall. If you could have seen yourself, you would
have laughed at the way your body flailed around. It probably looked pretty silly. In actuality, there wasn’t anything ridiculous going on, just the body’s wisdom kicking in at the last second to rebalance its equilibrium to avoid a fall.

Imagine that same thing going on within the mental or emotional subtle "bodies" rather than the physical body.
A mental spin or a fearful mood may be a herky-jerky moment. The egoic mind cracks and perceptions shift as the
rebalancing of our spiritual growth happens, deep within. When we lose our physical balance, stumbles, slips and tumbles happen so fast there's no time to panic...we're down on the ground before we know it. When moods or confusion last awhile,
it can feel unsettling, disruptive or worrying. We can rest assured that mental-emotional re-balancing is also part of Awakening's process to establish equilibrium.

The matter of control, sanity and confusion are perceptions. It could be said that the egoic mind thinks it is a separate entity
and is therefore, the “doer” of all action. Awakening reality-checks the ego-mind by undoing its belief system. Ego “falls-cracks-crumbles" and tumbles off its autonomous pedestal causing temporary imbalance.

The Beauty of the process is in the absolute and complete safety within which we rest. This spaciousness, Awareness,
is That in which the ego mind arises and dissolves. Awareness goes nowhere and suffers no damage.

Try this mental exercise, find an object that is red that you can put in front of you. Now, close your eyes.
Think of that red object and “see” it, visually in your mind. Then, open your eyes and look at the object in front of you.
After 10 seconds, close your eyes and see the mental visual image of the object in your mind and hold it for 10 seconds.
Then, open your eyes and look at the object in front of you. Do this a few times by moving your concentration back and forth. Do you feel slight “shifts” or changes in perception as you switch from visual focus to mental focus?

As we awaken, our old conditioning patterns shift in the Light of Awareness. This may take time or it may happen quickly.
We may not notice it happening or we might feel confused while changes take place. The egoic mind is attached to its
beliefs, it will not appreciate changes for it imagines itself to be separate and desires control. When we willingly cooperate
with Awakening, the ego’s rituals and routines become fair game. Not to be destroyed, not to be killed but to be released
so more freedom can be experienced.

Beliefs and concepts become like worn-out bridges that undergo construction during the Awakening process.
Our ego may be standing on the first 1/3 of a dilapidated mental bridge and may freak out because the last 1/3 of its bridge
has been dismantled. Our Awakening is under the guidance of the Ultimate architect, Consciousness Itself, which knows
our exact blueprint. The ego fears the loss of control, yet the hugeness of That Which We Are holds and handles it all.

If we compare our present level of consciousness to our “past” selves of 15-20 years ago, we may recognize change.
It’s as though we’re not the same person we used to be. It’s true, we’re not, we’ve experienced shifts in consciousness.
We now see situations differently and we respond in new and more peaceful ways. Off-balance moments are part of the process of Awakening and are nothing to fear. “Shift-simply-happens” within the unshifting Awareness that we are and all
is well.

A story of fear and doubt as described in the New Testament of Matthew 14:22-32:

22 "He made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of Him to the other side, while He sent the crowds away.
23 ...He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone.
24 But the boat was already a long distance from the land, battered by the waves; for the wind was contrary.
25 And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea.
26 When the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out in fear.

27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”
28 Peter said to Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.”
29 And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus.
30 But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
31 Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”
32 When they got into the boat, the wind stopped.

In the story, fear arose with its perception of the wind and waves as dangerous and blown out of proportion.
Doubt took hold even while there was no true risk. When there was a call for help, the call was answered, assistance
was provided. A question also arose from Awareness to ask ‘why…did you doubt?’, like a good-natured friendly ribbing
to point out where things went awry.

The ego will doubt and fear, it does its job like wailing wind and rocking waves. We can ask Who is This which can see
the ego fearing and doubting? Awareness, The Truth of Who We Are, witnesses the ego’s fear and doubt, answers the call
for help. It rescues and questions gently to point out where the ego-mind went astray. Seeing the ego’s error is our “rescue”. The ego-mind, like wind and waves, dissolves in the Light of Awareness to rest in stillness.

Awakening, at times, is an uncomfortable experience, yet much of our human existence is discomfort. Ever worn wet socks? Ever taken a drink from a milk carton and gotten a swig of soured milk? Mental or emotional discomfort, similar to physical discomfort, has a feel and taste of its own.

Somatic Experiencing is a body-based approach to recovering from trauma created by Peter Levine, Phd.
This approach uses techniques of Pendulation and Resourced States to regulate the nervous system.
The mind/body are invited to move back and forth, much like the red object exercise, between feeling “not okay”
to a resourced state of “safety-goodness-and-okayness”. The nervous system becomes attuned through pendulation
from alertness/action to calm/rest. This avoids “hanging up” at either end of extremes.

When we meditate or pray, our nervous systems experience a peaceful reference, like a resourced point.
We can access this peace by staying attuned to the present moment. During the Awakening process,
we can allow fear/panic/anxiety to arise (we pendulate) by offering it to our Awareness in the present moment.
“Not okay” pendulates to “safety-goodness-okayness”.

Moods that sink or minds that spin can be compared to Peter, sinking in the waves with outstretched hand or to the
ego’s off balance fall. Awareness will answer, just like the hand of Jesus grabbing hold of Peter, our perceptions shift.
This pendulation from fear to okay-ness in the present moment, from panic back to safety in the Now rebalances our
nervous systems.

The next time you have an off-balance mental or emotional moment, if the ego fires its favorite question, “but why?!!!”,
Know that Awakening is doing its job, working with the mind, the emotions and the body. All is well. We can bear the discomfort, it will soon pass. Unpleasant, yes, but it’s a good thing.

If we wonder about going crazy, we’re not – if we were, it wouldn’t even occur to us to ask, we’d simply be…
however crazy looks. Control? Well, the ego’s control is readjusted as perceptions, beliefs and concepts shift,
yet That Which We Are is in control. "Shift-Happens" and we can handle it.

With you as Awakening unfolds (Photo Credits : James Owen and Austin-Kehmeier @ Unsplash)

A Power Like No Other

Awakening is the direct experience of Divine Power. This is the power like no other, yet it includes all other experiences
of strength which manifest in form within the human experience. We know the mind is powerful, we love the strength and beauty of its creativity. Have we stopped to wonder, from where does this power come?

I turn on light-switches, lamps, my laptop and my oven roaster in full expectation that bulbs will energize to offer light
and electrical appliances will whirl to life giving heat and mechanical performance. How many times do I contemplate
from where this does this power come?

The power of electricity is invisible, it escapes the attention of the thinking mind which has raced from “finger-click” on power button to “what’s next”, what will be accomplished when the laptop powers up, the roaster temperature reaches 350-degrees Farenheit?

The thinking mind, attached to and completely absorbed by the drive to achieve an outcome from use of electrical power completely misses the multi-step process involved in the delivery of residential power to my home. The power generation, transmission, increases and step-downs of voltage through transformers, the distribution, measuring and metering,
the protection of breakers and fuses, the access points of wires, outlets and switches.

“Who cares as long as it works?” I hear the thinking mind’s attempt to brush aside any deeper reflection. A deeper understanding of how-things-work becomes very important when we turn on a switch and nothing happens. When the laptop won’t power up, when the roaster doesn’t become hot, when the lightbulb stays dark, when the washing machine won’t cycle. Trouble-shooting relies on a deeper understanding to isolate components which no longer work so that repairs can restore service.

Awakening could be seen as a spiritual reconnection service which uses Awareness as an in-built tool for trouble-shooting.
We reach a point in our human lives when “things just don’t work.” The forward momentum is interrupted. We experience this disruption with the emotional reaction of “crisis”. The egoic identity of “me” sees Life only in terms of an outcome, its plan
called “my life”. Its imagined success as the human dream, much like the life of an appliance. Flip this switch, light comes on. Turn that knob to cook dinner.

The egoic identity is very much like a computer program, having inputs and outputs which achieve the goal of its software.
Find a partner, build a coupled unit or family system to secure emotional security. Pursue a career to build psychological prestige, to increase mental knowledge, to lock-in the security of planned income to support a human lifestyle.

Have we ever wondered, what lies beyond the programming, beyond the superficial yet very compelling agenda of the egoic “me”? What might be a higher purpose of the momentum of a human life? As we awaken, we begin to see the interplay of multiple layers of Consciousness. Psychologically, we begin to recognize parts of our human conditioning that have been hidden in unconsciousness as if we have been sleeping. We see the defensive mechanisms of denial and repression that
held unconsciousness in the grip of sleep. We might feel its energetic movement “upwards” as it breeches the surface of our subconscious, we might notice it play out in our dreams or fantasies. We may watch it flow into conscious awareness,
reflected in our social interactions like a 3D-training role play.

In spiritual terms we might recognize where we’ve been asleep, where we’ve been dreaming, how we appear to be awakening. We may burst with laughter to see We Are That which never slept. We may be filled with awe to see the creativity which creates the human dream. We might experience “openings” or mystical experiences where the human life is observed with neutral detachment so that it appears to be an illusion, a dream against the backdrop of the Formless essence of our Being.

We may feel relief and gratitude that we’re not imprisoned by human life. We might feel overwhelmed by the inherent Power
of the Truth of Who We Are. We may finally see that every discontent is an innocently-believed, uninvestigated, fearful egoic thought and yet be transfixed by the momentum of the human life which seems to continue.

A turning point arrives in Awakening, when Awareness discerns its Source of power. This “clear seeing” arises
from the formless dimension, beyond intellectual thought. Although we might be more accustomed to the thinking mind,
we’ve never been separate from Being. When we’re ready, when we’ve suffered enough, when we are willing and open
to find a better way so that we might live from the core of our Beingness in peace, we will transcend the suffering of the
human condition. This mysterious process will happen in appropriate timing to manifest in a way tailor-made for each of us.

Call it a miracle, call it Grace, call it spiritual evolution, the expansion of Consciousness is available and waiting for our earnest call.

Volumes have been written about spiritual awakening. Each word is “pointer” to That which cannot be adequately described with language, yet it can be directly experienced. The tiny version of power we’ve experienced as a human being using our intellect is like a birthday candle held next to the sun. Wisdom, the Intelligence of the Universe is so much more vast, deep
and powerful than the little human mind can grasp.

It would seem to be too big but it remains accessible, available and ever-ready to make Itself known, realized and recognized. Inside each of us is a sacred center, that inner core of Spaciousness that is connected to That Source of Power, which is never separate from Who We Are.

What does it take to reach this power, to experience our Source?

Just a moment of Stillness. We can turn within, focus on our breathing, feel the inner energy field of our bodies and wait,
in earnest. This is becoming Present. That Which We Are awaits our invitation to arise. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle describes Presence in detail as well as the human conditioning which covers over our awareness our essence as pure,
formless Being.

Take a moment to listen to the Power of Now on Audible, youtube or grab a digital copy from the amazon kindle store or your
favorite digital outlet or listen to podcasts featuring Eckhart Tolle. If you don't feel a connection to his work, remain open.
What's destined for you will find you, for Awakening is available in as many ways as there are manifestations of form.
You might experience peace as you sit in nature. You might be inspired by a verse from a song. You might be given a book
or run across someone you feel drawn to because of the peace which radiates around them. If you feel a sense of aliveness while listening, reading or being in the Presence, Awakening has already begun within you.

This beautiful mystery of spiritually Awakening leaves no one out and the process will unfold through unimagined serendipity.
After all, Awakening is not separate from Who You Are, It serves That of Which You Are. It just takes a moment to tune into the Present Moment, to reconnect with your inherent Power Source.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

I'm Big Enough to Hold All That I Am When I Turn From Shadows to the Light

How much can we open to true Unconditional Love?
How many opportunities pass by us each day without notice?
How many times does our thinking egoic mind dismiss the bigness of Love or and turn away opportunities to receive
or express it?

When we feel depleted, empty, under-nourished, we are like a clogged pipeline, a kinked waterhose, unable to channel
the fullness of the Abundance and Love which we are. What stands in the way of the recognition of Unconditional Love?

Is there a niggling doubt in the background that we don't deserve that much Unconditional Love?
Are there emotional residues of blame and guilt, so that we turn away from the mightiness of Love in shame?

When we focus only on our human conditioning we begin to see shadows as if they are real, we are enveloped by darkness
and fear the darkness to be what we are. Oh, how innocent our confusion! Nothing could be further from the truth, yet fear
feels so real that we believe the egoic mind's negative voice of punishment, separation and condemnation.

A wise recommendation from Christian literature can be found in Matthew 7:7-8:

"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.
For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened."

When we ask for greater understanding of the Truth of Who We Are, we lift our eyes above our human conditioning
to see with the Loving vision of our Creator or Source, who looks upon all and is well pleased. If we find inspiration
outside of religious wording, we might realize that Life is not happening to us, but is us. That Creation or Life is That
in which bodies appear, thoughts and emotions appear, physical forms and events appear and We Are That Life Energy, witnessing the dance and play of forms. This is where we find the peace that is unaffected by the changes in temporary physical forms.

When we seek to know more deeply of our inner truth, we open willingly for new heights and depths of our Beingness
to be revealed. We signal our receptivity. When we knock, we take the action step in faith that we are not limited by conditioning although we experience its limitations of human experience in the forms of thought, emotion, behaviors.
When we attune to our formless Being-ness, we step out of the shadows and are open to the Light of revelation.
We sense the mighty essence of our true identity as unfolding consciousness.

There is a comforter deep within our Hearts that is our connection to our transcendental nature as a focal point of
Consciousness coming from our Creator, our Source. This connection is real, alive and very active. This inner guidance
is always available, here, Now, in the Present Moment. In Christian terms, this is called The Holy Spirit. Outside of religious reference, this might be called Wisdom, Intuition, Attunement.

Isaiah 42:16
"I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn
the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do;
I will not forsake them."

If in doubt, become quiet and still deep inside. Open to listening intensely with every fibre of your Being. Know that
what is to be accomplished will be revealed. Feel the rejuvenation awaiting your earnest call. Ask to be shown the
Truth of Unconditional Love, to be filled to the brim with the recognition of the Truth of Who You Are. Allow the shame
and guilt to be washed away in innocence, for human conditioning nisn’t “personal”, it is simply unconsciousness,
part of the human condition.

Byron Katie, “Love is so vast within Itself that it will burn ‘you’ up. It’s so vast that there’s nothing ‘you’ Can do with It.
All ‘you’ can do is Be It.”

The Light of Truth, the revelation of That which Is beyond the human form, is of the Love of Which We Are.
We are worthy to receive this conscious realization for human conditioning is temporary, innocent ignorance, not the sum
total of What We Are. Our Divine or inherent birthright is the peace which comes from seeing ourselves as this Love,
not just receiving Love but Being Love, at One, in conscious Awareness.

Glenda Green (Love Without End): “The most important right is to have a relationship with our Creator. The connection
with your Source is never broken…your core connection is always sustained. Your Relationship with the Creator is immediate and everlasting. It is a relationship not dependent upon the Consent of anyone else, nor is it controlled by conformity of beliefs. All you have to do is act upon your Immortal right to be restored in a relationship with your Creator. No matter what condition
in which you might find yourself, the tie has never been lost.”

Shadows dance but they cannot truly block nor deny the Truth. We will be shown what is real and that which is not.
We will notice the stories the egoic or thinking mind tells and we will feel the suffering that our belief in those stories creates.

Byron Katie, “We are really alive only when we live in non-belief – open, waiting, trusting and loving to do what appears in front of us now.”

That which feels too small to contain the mighty fullness of Love will crack and dissolve, for it was just a tiny clog or kink believed to be a vulnerable tiny separate "me". The egoic mind creates the personal self, a “little me” seen in our heads
like a movie projected on a screen. This personal self is attached to a body and called a “me” while our Being-ness,
That beyond form, goes unnoticed.

We can offer the “little me” concept for review. We can look upon its tiny-ness, its doubts, and allow it to be enveloped
by Truth. This is turning away from the shadows and facing the Light, this is true freedom.

Eckhart Tolle, “Through ‘you’, Consciousness is awakening out of Its dream of identification with form
and withdrawing from form.”

Ephesians 5:13-14
But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.
This is why it is said: “Wake up, sleeper, rise from the dead… "

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Actively Opening to Opportunities

When we're feeling lost, we might wonder, "*Where are all of my life opportunities?"

If we stay focused on our thinking minds in hopes of an answer, we are going to swirl around and around in the thought system that has created a sense of lack. We can move into the still part of our innermost space within, that place where Wisdom speaks. In this quiet space, we can use the mind for contemplation rather than for generating "thought". This is the wise use of mind. We can ask deep questions and allow the "answer" to arise from the depths of our Being-ness, That which is beyond the mind yet expresses through the mind.

We might ask:

  • What is the relationship between my degree of openness, a sense of lack and my outlook on Life?
  • How does my outlook affect the flow of opportunity?

We can "wait", bypass the immediate "answer" the egoic or thinking mind offers and just sit in the un-knowing awhile.
We can focus our attention on our breathing, slowly witnessing the in-breath, the out-breath and just watch "being-breathed".
Our breathing will deepen and our bodies will shift into open expansion. We become attuned to the Present Moment.
What arises will come from the Truth of Who We Are beyond our conditioning. The content that comes through our mind
will ring true and we will feel a vibration of alive peace. We will Know that what we "hear" can be trusted when peace
is present and there is a feeling of unconditional love which cannot directly be explained.

Two physical side-effects of trauma, wounding or emotional suffering are a heightened nervous system primed for
fight-flight-freeze and a hyper-vigilant approach to life events. Pete Walker, author of Complex PTSD: from Surviving
to Thriving says we become "stuck in an adrenalized state...the sympathetic nervous system is locked 'on'... cannot toggle
into the relaxation function of the parasympathetic nervous system."

When we anticipate conflict or danger, our muscles contract in readiness to run, hide or duck out of harm's way.
Laurence Heller, PhD mentions in Healing Developmental Trauma, the S.A.M System, "Sympathetic-Adrenaline-Medullary System... increases the level of tension in muscles, constrict blood vessels, divert blood away from the viscera...necessary for survival should there be injury."

How might the imprint of our past suffering be branding our current outlook on life? How might it skew our discernment
of the availability of opportunities? How might it cancel our natural anticipation of Life's abundance as incoming opportunities?

If we remember the last time we felt defensive, what mind patterns do we notice? Is there a sense of shutting down or closing off? Is there withdrawal? Is there avoidance, denial or retaliatory counter-offense? Are there ingrained assumptions such as "something bad is going to happen"; "this is not going to turn out well"; "nothing works out for me"; "may as well not even try";
"if I delay long enough it'll go away"; "this pre-emptive strike will keep me safe". How might negative prediction patterns affect our ability to recognize opportunities riding on the wave-crest of this present moment?

This type of contemplation is not the squirrel-cage thinking mind which generates suffering. This type of deep questioning
is bringing the squirrely-ness of egoic mind to freedom, the freedom from suffering. Bringing the conditioned mind to the
Light of Awareness allows the power of Awakening to dissolve past pain. Is there pain in this present moment or is there
a pressure that we can't put our finger on? Emotional pain, moving from the unconscious up through the subconscious to
arrive in conscious awareness is a journey. It is a vibratory energy that sometimes cannot be named nor explained until
it breaks open within our conscious attention. It may be uncomfortable pressure, but the pain is "remebered", through
memory, of a past time in a past situation. We can bring that painful energy into the present moment to be dissolved
within the direct experience of our Beingness, in stillness, in silence.

Just for today, when we notice a negative prediction, we can set it gently aside with an understanding the past where pain
has been experienced, is gone. This moment - is fresh and new. We can step into experimental openness.

We might let go of the old habit of scanning for signals of danger. We might venture one step forward with alert, active readiness to recognize and reeive opportunity: the dawning of revelation, the inspirational insight to fuel creativity,
the realization of an overlooked ancillary income stream...however opportunity might "dress itself" for Its meeting with us.

Might the very action of "active opening" offer opportunity's helicopter-circling a landing pad?

For those of us facing health challenges, holistic medicine teaches that our outlook, our approach and degree of receptivity
and our ability to release stress has a direct influence and impact on our bodily tissues, organs, lymphatic and endocrine systems affecting hormonal balance, blood pressure, digestion and metabolic process, all physiological processing.

Others of us may face financial hardship, relationship difficulties, emotional/mental disturbance, behavioral imbalance,
addiction, crises of faith and any other rebalancing and integration of the mind, emotion, and physical bodies.

Psycho-neuro-endocrinology, the branch of science that studies the relationship between the endocrine system,
the nervous system and psychology recognizes that psychological stress impairs wound healing. Dr. Gabor Mate,
a Hungarian-Canadian physician with special interest in trauma's potential lifelong impacts on physical and mental health mentions, "the word for healing comes from the Anglo-Saxon word for wholeness and the essential nature of trauma is that
it’s a loss of wholeness. It’s the impact of what happened and how that’s manifesting as a disconnect right now in our lives.
How can we reconnect with wholeness? A proper understanding of trauma actually says, ‘This happened inside me, it’s with
me in the present, and because it’s with me in the present, I can do something about it'."

I would suggest an interpretation that trauma is the ego's reaction to unconscious human conditioning. Pain, unrecognized
and misunderstood goes "underground" until it can be dealt with later, with greater skill, so that we may survive our present
circumstances. What happened, happened within the Wholeness That I Am. In this present, although the situation has
gone, the energetic residue of pain still resides within me and it's coming up to be released, so that I might remember my
Wholeness, which has never gone, but has been covered over by the thoughts from pain. To "do something about it",
is to bring the suffering to Stillness. To allow the Peace that I Am to enfold and dissolve past pain.

For those of us who are spiritually-inclined, we might remember the teachings of wise ones who've transcended human suffering. Matthew 6:34 "Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for. the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself."

A Course in Miracles: " The sudden expansion of awareness takes place with your desire, for it is the irresistible appeal the holy instant holds. It calls to you to be yourself, within its safe embrace. There are the laws of limit lifted for you, to welcome you to openness of mind and freedom." Every flower opens to the sun in perfect readiness. Might today be our day of readiness to open to unimagined opportunities?

Matthew 6:8 "Your Father knoweth what things ye have need of before ye ask Him."

Eckhart Tolle: "The ego is an insubstantial phantom which cannot prevail against the power of Presence".

With You as Awakening Unfolds

It's OK to Slow Down

We humans are a speedy species. How many times have you heard or said, “hurry up”, “let’s get going”, “gotta run”. It’s innocent, many of us were reared on go-go-go with the only slow-mode reserved for colds, sniffles, illness or recovery from accidents.

How quick is a thought? Science says that some well-insulated nerve pathways receive information at up to 120 meters per second. There’s a clue in there…speed… and when the mind is driving, we accelerate “Vrooom - We’re off! In go-mode, we can be way “off” the natural pace of Life with its ebb and flow, the to and fro movement of outward action and inward rest.

What happens when an engine “red-lines” for an extensive period of time? It overheats as it exceeds its maximum capacity, it loses its structural strength as components are torn apart. Yes, these are machines yet human minds use bodies that also experience wear and tear when the stress caused by the squirrely-thinking mind red-lines on a daily basis. We’ve heard the reports from Mind and Body Science that chronic stress decreases immune function when stress hormones are over-produced for extended time. So, why do we do it?

Innocence. Deeply-ingrained conditioning patterns drive the thinking mind. Thoughts fire, they’re believed to be true and off we go. What do we do? We attempt to outrun the “past” or chase a “future” moment of fulfillment.
We try to catch up, we strive to get ahead. We’re driven by these thoughts and miss the moment of Right Now, which doesn’t seem too very important.

This one moment, Now, doesn’t seem to be enough. And yet, Now is What Is,
All That Is and we completely miss it.

Remember those moments when we’ve been sick. When life had to slow down,
and our daily routine came to a halt. What thoughts coursed through the mind?
“I wish this was over, I gotta get back on track, I don’t have time for this, I’m getting so far behind…”. Sometimes Life responds in mysterious ways to restore balance.

Could we consider that these “delays” might be little gifts of Grace? Small stretches of time to catch our breath, to ease into the inherent timing and rhythm of Life? Can we recognize this opportunity? Could we allow ourselves to gear-down, to look, listen, watch and observe? Life’s timing as the Now is not motionless. Moments approach, crest and fall, just like the tide with waves rolling in followed by the tide going out. Just like the breath, the beautiful rhythm of inward inhalation and outward exhalation, movement wrapped in oxygenated stillness.

Gone are the days when we were children attempting to match our parents’ stride with 3 running jumps of our own. “C’mon, don’t dawdle!” Perhaps we heard innocently ignorant feedback that we were “too slow”, “being lazy”, “daydreaming like a ninny”. Our adult sensibility has the right to investigate its rhythms, to question whether these thoughts-now-on-a-mental-feedback-loop are true.

Negative judgments need comparison for validity. What if Life – As Us – is perfectly content with how it’s showing up in this Now moment, with nothing extra needed? How might our pace change if there’s no comparison with another? If there is no need to disprove the negative feedback from the past? Who might we be were we to let go of our mental picture of “a future” we’re striving to “get to”?

It’s OK to slow down, to breathe, to take it all in, to simply Be, Present, Now. We are the permission we’ve always sought. If the Now wants to hug you, will you open your arms?

If the Now wants to speak to you, wouldn’t you be curious to hear what It wishes to say? No need to believe a word you’ve read, test it for yourself.

Slow down, take the nap, rock in the hammock, lie back and find the shapes in the clouds. You won't be kicked off the Earth, you're not being "lazy". The deepest and closest part of You is waiting for your invitation to reveal Itself and it does so in the Now. It can’t help it because the Truth of Who You Are is irresistible.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

Why Am "I" Spacing Out?

There will times during Awakening when it feels as though we "can't think clearly" and this will bring up tremendous fear. To feel confused, while the attachment to thinking mind is strong, is uncomfortable. "Am I losing my mind", "am I losing the ability to reason?" Questions like these will come to Awareness.

We can relax into these moments rather than fighting or resisting them. There is a purification and integrative process during Awakening which is happening. There will be a temporary suspension of thinking while the power of Being or spaciousness expands, strengthens and stabilizes.

We could think of it as "construction", where traffic is re-routed to another road while a bridge is being repaired. The re-routing feels foreign as we struggle to read the detour signs, yet if we follow them, we will find our way.

The former pathway now under construction was to turn to thinking mind which used judgment and negativity to build a story around happening events.
This is undergoing change.

The "new" pathway, which is our original inherent pathway, is the openness to the flow of Wisdom as discernment.

The construction process is the weakening of attachment to thinking mind, the openning to the flow of Wisdom coming forth from our Being-ness.

The thinking mind is obsessed with "objects" of mind, its thoughts, its emotions, its stories about "things". Like seeing only clouds in the sky and never taking in the vast spaciousness of the sky, itself.

We can rest in the open "sky", the spaciousness of Being, unattached to objects such as thoughts and emotions.

This may seem scary at first, this Freedom, the Bigness of it. As we dip into it, we come to know It as That Which We Are, welcoming with no-thing to fear.

We can rest assured that all is well.
We can allow the process to take place without worry that we will "lose" the ability "to think". We can dive deeply into the Spaciousness of formless Being without fear of it, we can embrace the unknowing.

The time will return when thinking happens smoothly again and we will notice that thinking has become more efficient. Pure thought, devoid of egoic distortion is free and very skillful.
The mind, as a tool, serves beautifully the inherent Wisdom of the Truth of Who We Are.

We will notice that we did not need negative judgment, that Wisdom is capable of discernment without any negativity. We begin to rely upon the power of unconditional love rather than judgment. Love flows freely as ego dissolves.

We begin to realize through direct experience the marvel of the integrated mind, where mind is used as a tool informed by Wisdom and Truth rather than mind being "attached to or identified with" in support if a "little me" egoic concept needing to attack and defend.

We can allow the unwinding of the identification with thinking mind by braving these moments. This is cooperating with Awakening. The old is passing away and the new is arising.

2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

With You as Awakening Unfolds

How Do Your Feet Hit the Floor Each Morning?

A few seconds every morning, awakening consciousness looks through your eyes.
There’s no “you” in this moment, not yet, there's just seeing - hearing.
There’s peace, calm, a feeling of everything being okay.
This is the tiny time-frame before the thinking mind starts firing. Have you caught it?

Think back to this morning, what was the driving force that lifted your body from the bed?
Can you remember the first thoughts?
Where was your identity as a "person" in these thoughts?

“I" have to get up, now, or I’ll be late for work”; “I’d better go check…”; “I wish I didn’t have to…”; “If only I could lie here for another couple of hours”; “What’s for breakfast?”.

What were the emotions that followed those thoughts as you rose from your resting place
(Irritation, Anxiety, Sadness, Disappointment, Excitement)?

What happened to that comfy sense of peace? Where did it go?

Can we hold onto this perfect peace?
Can we prolong this sense of wide-eyed wonder, this feeling of care-free floating with the natural rhythm of Life?

Have we considered that the emotions we feel have little to do with whatever is happening “out there” in the world,
but a result of “the world” coming into being when the thinking mind wakes up to high-jack our attention?

Where was the world while we slept?
Where was the sense of “I-as-human-personality or little me” while we were sleeping?
Where was the thinking mind? Hmmm....thinking mind and world appear and disappear together.

What if we could rock that sense of peace all day long, uninterrupted by any external events, no matter which situations arise?

The next morning you awaken, see if you can catch that moment of inherent Glory where all is well and all is clear -
without thought.

Marvel and revel in it.
The thinking mind will inevitably fire.
We can use any of several techniques designed to turn the mind’s attention inwards rather than attaching to the
thoughts that signal the mind is moving outwards. We can turn the mind inwards by focusing our attention on the
inner energy field of the body. Imagine lying in bed.

Now turn up your sensory perception like a dial from 0 to 10.
Feel the coolness of the sheets, the snuggly-ness of the comforter, feel the air on your cheeks,
listen for any sounds and follow them to the moment they trail off into silence.

Without moving your hands, without looking at them, see if you can determine if your hands “are still there”.
You’ll be feeling the aliveness within them, the inner energy field of your body coursing through your hands.
See if you can feel the inner aliveness of other parts of your body.

Go deeply into feeling this inner energy – this will pause the thinking mind.
You’ll have pulled energy from the thinking mind and directed into your body.
You can follow your breath with your attention, focus on the inhalation then the exhalation.
As you become Present, the thinking mind stills.

Feel the sweetness of being conscious, without thinking.
This is tuning into the Truth of Who You Are as consciousness, as Being, without the identification with the
personality, the egoic little me, the human identity attached to thoughts. If Awareness of the Now moment wavers,
the thinking mind will come back in and you’ll notice its thoughts.

You can choose to follow those thoughts or allow them to pass by like a twirling leaf on the swirling current of a stream.
The more we disengage from thoughts, the less their vibrational “stickiness” or attachment. This is similar to meditation practice, disregarding the thinking mind’s momentum. With practice, Presence "power" grows and Awareness deepens. Thoughts have a lesser hold on our attention, less able to impact our sense of peace.

How do your feet hit the floor each morning?
Give this direct way of experiencing your Beingness a try.
How does this compare to past ways when thoughts seemed to drive us from peaceful slumber?

Why does this matter?
This attunement to the deepest “I” (before attachment to thoughts “I am man, I am woman, this is my place in the world)
is the very wellspring of contentment. This deepest "I" is the source, our Source. Bathe in this Source first thing in the
morning and let your feet lightly touch the ground for a day of amazing discovery. There are no boundaries for this peace.
It is the "peace that passeth understanding" according to the words of Christ, a peace that words cannot describe yet it can be directly experienced.

The very Truth of Who We Are, this Peace cannot resist our earnest invitation to delight in the discovery of Itself.

With You as Awakening Unfolds

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