An Ego Free Day

This Wednesday, UN Peace Day Sept. 21st

Choose to be ego free! 

The International Day of Peace, sometimes unofficially known as World Peace Day, is observed annually on 21 September. It is dedicated to world peace, and specifically the absence of war and violence, such as might be occasioned by a temporary ceasefire in a combat zone for humanitarian aid access. The day was first celebrated in 1982, and is kept by many nations, political groups, military groups, and peoples.  Source Wikipedia

This year the theme is “The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks of Peace” a worthy goal however in 2017 or the near future the theme could be: “The Sustainable Individual:  Take Your Peace Temperature.”    The UN could lead the way in encouraging the practice of personal peace and promote the daily “hygienic” practice of taking one’s peace temperature everyday like brushing teeth or combing hair.  Are you a peace maker or a trouble maker? We know Global Warming is heating the planet with dire predictions but something that we can do something about is the temperature of our mind.  

For example, on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being peaceful, what is your temperature today?  If encouraged to perform the task of accessing our daily inner temperature we would look inward: Happy or sad; upset; what can I forgive or accept; what do I need to do; a walk in the park; write an apology or thank you; what am I thinking and should I believe it; what I am judging; projecting and can I find it also within myself so I can let it go. 

In taking my temperature I am responsible for looking at my thoughts and change them if they cause pain, grief or misery of any kind.  Who or what part of my mind is running the show that translates into my judgments and thoughts?  Unless I choose differently it’s the ego.  I don’t have to believe every thought or the drama attached to it that can escalate to a war pitch in my mind.   When we are aware of the escalation and how we feel and think we can say:  “Do I want this thought; is it true? Can I refuse to believe it or see it another way?”  

Question every thought and when a judgmental thought crops up (and it will) say: “Oh there’s the ego again – no big deal” merely look and let it go.  If  I take the time to look within and name the annoyance or the judgement and acknowledge it is also in myself, it has to be otherwise I would not see it out there, then I can let it go or see it another way.   All condemnations are from the ego, a master in projection, if we let it be chairman of our thoughts.

Salvation from the ego is within your powerful mind.  You are the decision maker and can put the controls on the ego; switch channels.   Go to the sanity within and say “I choose peace; I want to see this differently.”  Find the “mute” button and turn off the ego insanity.  Maybe carry a small symbol as a reminder in your pocket to choose peace.  This practice of watching the mind will reduce the ego.  It is imperative for inner peace.  

The ego is not your friend.  You are a loving mind, a higher Self, a Spirit and you have done nothing wrong.   As we become less identified with the ego, the quiet truth will emerge from the Love within the One mind we share.   We live in a world that screams of distraction and misery, especially with the current war in the Middle East, refugees flooding Europe and the general election.  But there is always something screaming at us.  A mind at peace will find the loving thing to do when called upon and if we don’t buy into ego doom and gloom we will see clearly what the right thing is.   No longer living as a puppet of the ego we take our inner peace temperature daily allowing the love within to be projected outward to do the good it will.  Take your inner peace temperature next Wednesday September 21 and have a nice day!

Sally McKirgan facilitates one of several ‘A Course In Miracles’ study groups in the Rogue Valley and the Ashland Daily Tidings inner peace column and community blog.  Contact her at innerpeaceforyou@live.com

 

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Celtic Evensong, Sunday, September 18

A CELTIC BLESSING  by Bert Anderson

 

Church is not the first place most people go to today to find inner peace. They might go to be inspired by the sermon, a personal witness, or outstanding musical performance, but I seldom hear people who do attend report they are touched at the level of soul or spirit.

Fewer people go to church these days, even though a majority say that they believe in God. One woman I talked to recently said that she was lapsed Unitarian and was now a  Buddhist.  Others in my group of friends do not deny their Christian heritage, but they are more likely to attend a Thich Nhat Hanh mindfulness meditation than a church.

I’ve been a member of the Episcopal Church for eighty years. I love the prayer book services, and here in Ashland, the music is excellent, but I am one of those people with an active mind, always on the go, needing to do the next thing.  I don’t have the patience to keep a daily routine of meditation and prayer and going to church has often become an obligation. Not until recently have I found the quiet, meditative atmosphere that I crave in a service.

I began attending a monthly Celtic evensong at Trinity Episcopal Church, an unusual service for Episcopalians.  When I enter on Sunday evenings, I am handed a folder so I can follow the service. An offering plate sits on a chair to one side for anyone who wants to make a donation.  Candles flicker in the church and lights are low. A Celtic harp is played. I light a votive candle to remember someone who needs healing, or for myself, and then I slip into a pew and become part of the meditative silence.

The service begins with a familiar hymn and a reading that draws on wisdom of the ages, perhaps that of Rumi or another Sufi poet. Thich Nhat Hanh would not be out of place here. After a short reading from the Bible, one of the church members tells a personal reflection of his or her faith. A few minutes 0f silence follow. Then comes a brief communion, where everyone is welcome to join in or not. After a final hymn, the service ends as it began, with silence. People leave as they will, no minister is at the door, and one walks out into the quiet of the night.

Celtic Christianity is about “original blessing,” instead of “original sin.” There is no contrition, confession, creeds, or long litanies.

One member writes, “I love the quietness, the candles, the music, and the words said. I feel at peace with myself and God. It is hard to explain the whole sense of spirituality that I feel, but when I leave, my cup is full.”

Another writes, “The solemnity of the Celtic service urges me to set aside my daily complexities and invites me into God’s love.”

The Celtic evensong and communion originated as an alternative to morning worship at St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia. Members of the group that plan the Celtic services at Trinity, have visited St. Stephen’s and have gone to the island of Iona, Scotland, a center of Celtic spirituality, to learn more about this form of Christianity.

People from all faiths or none are invited to find inner peace at the next Celtic Evensong, Sunday, September 18, at 7:00 p.m., Trinity Episcopal Church, 44 North Second St., Ashland.

 Bert Anderson is an assisting clergy at Trinity Episcopal Church. He has written four plays since he retired in Ashland, including Mister Brightside and the Bonfire Nights, and TRaNZ. Currently he is working on a memoir.

 

 

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I don’t know by Dan Fischer

My core philosophy: I don’t know  by Dan Fischer

“There is no hole in the bottom of the universe out of which you can fall.” I am alive. Someday I will be dead. I am not going to speculate on what happens after I die.  I don’t know. If there is a life after death we don’t know anything about it because no one with any credibility has come back and told us about it. So, I’m not going to talk about it. I’ll deal with it when I get there. . .  Or, I won’t. . .  Meanwhile, I’m alive and I’m going to die. I can enjoy the ride or complain about the ride and the scenery.

For years I remembered John Merritt, with whom I shared a hospital room back in the spring of 1959. He had bone cancer and was dying a terrible, painful death. His wife was sweet and gentle. Neither of them deserved the pain they were enduring. It frightened me. And I stayed frightened for years. 

After many kidney stones and intestinal blockages I have learned that pain is inevitable but suffering is a choice. I have chosen not to suffer. (Most of the time.)

When I was young and starting into the world I spent some time leaning about goal setting. Goal setters and their gurus make rules for goals. Like: Goals must be positive. Goals must be measureable. Goals must be specific. Etc.

“I will make a million dollars by five years from now.” Meets the criteria for a good goal but it didn’t satisfy me. It was incomplete. So I took it a step further. Why do I want a million dollars? What would I do with it? What would it do for me? A million dollars is a pile of paper or a bunch of marks on paper. It only has value if it does something. So I sought what I really wanted. After careful and long search I found that what I want and wanted is internal Security, personal peace and joy. Oh, and a million dollars couldn’t buy them. There is some security in owning a lot of money. It can provide some peace (or anxiety). And it may provide some joy, . . . or not.

When I got, really got, that there is no hole in the bottom of the universe out of which I could fall I understood that my goals were in my reach. My kidney stones and intestinal blockages helped me to understand that pain does not necessarily stand between me and my three goals. I can feel pain and have my internal peace. I can have joy. My internal security is in knowing that I am, nothing can change that until I am not. And then I won’t care!           

This seems so simple to me. It is so clear. I am reminded of a time when I was working for Univac and learning their 1108 super computer. It had a concept that was strange to me. The manual explained it on about two pages. I read them and didn’t understand. I re-read them and still didn’t understand. I went to my boss and asked him to explain it. I spent more than two days struggling with the concept and finally got it. It was simple. I could summarize t in about two sentences with which my boss agreed. 

One of my General Semantics gurus said “I’ll see it when I believe it.”  The simplicity of my three goals is like that. I didn’t see it until I believed it.

So, how do my three goals fit into the greater world? How do they relate to morality, to family? I get joy from doing, doing for others, doing for myself, sometimes, just doing. My joy is greater when I do for others than when I do to others. When I was a little boy I pulled the wings off flies, (didn’t we all?). When I reached a certain level of enlightenment, I no longer took pleasure in torturing lesser or weak creatures. Now, when I find a spider in my sink, I gently catch it and take it outside to freedom.  I do to it what I think it would like me to do to it. It brings more joy than hitting it with a magazine would. It could be considered a selfish act. (But, not to the spider.) Morality is its own reward.

Internal security comes from knowing that I will endure and I can endure until I am no more.  I know I can focus on the pain or the pleasure. I can enjoy just being alive. If that gets too tough and I’d rather not be alive I can just stop breathing until I remember how wonderful a full breath can be. This is how heroes survive torture and imprisonment. I’d rather live without pain but I’m not going to let my pain interfere with my pleasure.

I can know no one like I know myself. We are locked in an existential aloneness. I can appreciate your pain or pleasure but I can’t feel it like you do and you can’t feel mine.  When I finally got that, I relaxed into my personal peace.  (I wish I could always get it. Sometimes, I forget.) It is still a goal.

My three goals: Internal Security, Personal Peace and Joy. I achieve them and then I lose them. But they are always my goals.

Dan Fischer lives in Ashland. He occasionally teaches at OLLI at SOU. His blog is www.danielcfischer.com or google “The Crazy Mud Caper.” —–

 

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Beware of What you Tell Yourself – by Summer Raven

Beware What You Tell Yourself  

By Summer Raven, 1975

 (Thanks to Dan Fischer for sending this to the inner peace blog. 

It comes from a song that was sung at The Living Love Center in Berkeley in the 70′s)

Beware what you tell yourself,

Children of light.

Demanding and judging

Will alter your sight.

And forcing your way

Always leads to a fight,

’Cause nothing is wrong

More than anything’s right.

 

Wherever you wander,

Don’t leave love behind!

Whatever you’re giving

Is what you will find.

Accept what life shows you

Or live like the blind.—

The beauty or ugliness

Comes from your mind.

 

When life didn’t please us

We made ourselves sad.

When we couldn’t control things

We made ourselves mad.

This kept us from loving

What we already had.

What we want we call good,

What we don’t we call bad.

 

Remember our spirit

And follow your heart.

We can make our own troubles

Or take them apart.

When the tragedy ends,

Watch the comedy start.

In the story of life

You’re just playing your part.

 

 


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Love or Hate? You decide!

 

During this political season you probably “hate” one candidate and “love” the other

or maybe you like neither?

Right?

We harbor both love and hate within our Mind however, your true identity is attached to light and love.

Go through the clouds and enter the light that is your guide to peace.

Hate is the unwanted intruder into your beautiful mind.  You are in “charge” of what you thin.

You are the boss!  You can decide not to hate anyone – including yourself.  You have that POWER!  You are the decider!

Say: ”I refuse to hate myself or anyone – it makes me miserable and I let all the grudges and judgments GO!”  Really!  You can do this.  Why do you hold onto the old grudges that make you miserable.  Do you like being miserable?  Nope –  so let it ALL Go!

It is that EASY!  TRY IT!!

For example – Decide you will be happy for the next hour!  Look at the clock – write down the time.  State your decision….I will let go of thinking about _______ and worrying about ______ or fretting about ________.  I will spend the next hour releasing and breathing and focusing on being pleasant.

You are the Decider!  You are the Boss of your thoughts.  Oh yes  you are!  Don’t believe every thought that occurs to you.

Sally McKirgan facilitates the Tidings Inner Peace Column and a study group on the spiritual book:  A Course In Miracles.

Contact her at innerpeaceforyou@live.com  or visit her blog at www.innerpeaceforyou.com

www.facim.org   for more information about A Course In Miracles

AND If you or anyone you know is contemplating suicide visit: www.suicideishurtful.org

 

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Is Eternal Life Possible by Jim Hatton

IS ETERNAL LIFE POSSIBLE?

By Jim Hatton

 The prospect of eternal life is a very attractive one. Especially when it is combined with the idea of living in a peaceful, blissful state with endless beauty and all the material items one could want. As Morgan Freeman pointed out on his recent television series, the Story of God, on National Geographic, many of the great traditions has used the offer of eternal life as a tool to draw people into the tradition and a Heavenly State will be achieved if one acts in certain ways and professes certain beliefs. Mr. Freeman also demonstrates the idea of someone or something keeping track of the actions and deeds in our lives helps to control the masses into conforming to a pre-subscribed group of ideas and beliefs.  I call this the “Great Scoreboard in the Sky”.  It is a common belief both in and out of religion especially in western society.

 In doing spiritual counseling I find that, the greatest fear that many have is the fear of Death. That fear of death is not so much the fear of eternal punishment but the fear of Non-Existence.  In other words, many have the fear of after this physical life is over, we “go blank” or ‘wink out”. There is nothing left of us, we go unconscious forever.

 I recently attended a Celebration of Life service.  During the service the following passage was read:

 And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have not hope. For since we believe that that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died.

Christian Testament: Thessalonians 4:13-14 NLT   

 As I listened to these words being read, I had the thought that in order to have the prospect of eternal life, we must assume that we are not eternal already. The common fear I spoke of earlier of “winking out” must weigh heavily and consistently on many people’s consciousness.

 But what if we didn’t have to worry about doing the right things, and believing the right way to obtain eternal life?  What if we already knew that after we are done with this “space suit” body that our awareness, soul, consciousness, or whatever we want to call it is, in fact, eternal?

 In the tradition of the Kabbalah, we humans are all Emanations of the Divine.  That is the qualities, likeness, presence of the Divine are part of our inherent nature.

 Earnest Holmes writes:     Man is born of eternal day, not because he wills or wishes it, not because he labors or strives toward it, not because he earns it as a reward, but simply because the Spirit has breathed life into him. And the Spirit which has breathed this life into him has breathed Its own Life and cannot unbreathe It or take It away.

 You Will Live Forever-Holmes Star Publishing 2012

 The idea of eternal life is not one that we live in our current physical bodies forever, although ancient texts elude to living 800 years or more. Our current bodies are a specially designed “space suite” in which to enable us to experience the physical world.  Although closely tied and connected, our bodies are not “Us”. We will eventually discard this magnificent vehicle to move on to greater and greater expression; much like a lizard out grows and sheds its skin as it grows in stature.

 If we can accept and embody that what we are, which is pure consciousness, does not have to do anything to obtain immortality, but that we are already immortal, we can set aside all fears and live with a deeper inner peace.  

 Jim Hatton, is the author (under the name James Apollonius Alan) of “A Spiritual Master’s Guide to Life” available on Amazon or at SpiritualMaster.co.

 

The above article appeared in the Ashland Daily Tidings, Inner Peace Column on Saturday July 30, 2016

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Quieting the Mind by Lucie K. Scheuer

Quieting the Mind produces peace 

by   Lucie K. Scheuer

I recently completed a 21-day, guided meditation provided by Deepak Chopra and the Oprah network. As I opened my eyes on the last day, I felt empty, almost let down. I asked myself: “why?” The answer came very quickly. It was the first time, in a long time, I had allowed myself to really relax and let go. I actually had set aside half an hour each day to just be quiet and listen.

It wasn’t easy at the start. Thoughts would swirl up like a swarm of bees. I had to gently brush them away.

It wasn’t until ten minutes or so into it – that I could feel the tightening in my arms and legs begin to give way.  As I followed my breath, I noticed it became more regular. As the air flowed in and out, I began to realize how out of sync I had been with my own existence. Eventually I jump-started the practice on my own, and it has recharged my life.

We are bombarded on a daily basis, by sounds, requests, demands, obligations and news. These ever-present stimuli can be extremely stress-producing. It is easy – not only to become distracted, but to become used to the negative feelings all this bombardment produces. Adrenaline and cortisol begin to run our lives. Stress becomes less of a motivator and more of a curse.

With these daily meditations I realized, I was barely getting things done; while playing catch up all the time.  It was like sitting at a red light with my internal engine in overdrive. I knew if I continued in this manner, I would eventually burn out.

I think sometimes we forget that stress is an energy created from many sources: our thoughts, our assumptions, our environment, the weight of our responsibilities and our relationships.  If we don’t take the time to occasionally examine these sources, we run the risk of becoming addicted to the stress they create, or worse, losing ourselves and a sense of purpose.

Ask yourself, “Do I have a safe place in my home to unwind? Do I take time during the workday to unplug from the noise and hectic schedule? Am I able to say “no?” Are my expectations of myself and others causing me to feel a constant sense of disappointment and/or frustration? Have I lost interest in things that I love or that used to matter?” Your answers should tell you a lot about what you need to do next.

Years ago, my husband, formerly a photo-journalist, decided to take up landscape painting. With his photographer’s eye it wasn’t long before he was sharing his views of the Ashland rolling foothills in beiges, browns, violets and greens. My favorite still hangs in our bedroom.  It is a simple painting off Eagle Mill Road looking towards Mt. Ashland.  At the base of the painting sits a familiar octagonal sign. It reads STOP – sending a bright red message with a sense of urgency. And then you see the hills rising above the sign and suddenly – there you are – in the present.

Find your now; it is in the afternoon pauses; the short walks; music in the headphones; a half-hour comedy; maybe dinner with good friends.  Don’t forget to play. Run with the dog.  Play hide and seek with the cat. Read to your children. Make S’mores. And on a daily basis, don’t forget to put the work away and if you can, learn how to meditate.

As the mountains reach up into the clouds gathering water from the sky to send

down to the lakes and rivers

to flow into streams

bringing renewal

thank the mountains and the heavens

thank the clouds for their benevolence

earth molds and forms according to the laws of the universe

as do we

Lucie K. Scheuer is a Writer, Substance Abuse Counselor, and owns a consulting business to nonprofits in the Rogue Valley, “Silver Lining Solutions.” Contact her at:  lucieintheskye@msn.com

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On Prayer by Dan Fischer

 

On Prayer  by Dan Fischer

 

Here are four possibilities:

1) there is no god, no spirit, just a mechanistic universe that is open to scientific thought.

2) There is a benevolent god who takes an interest in what we do and think .

3) There is a god who created everything and let it go and is disinterested in us. And,

4) there is a malevolent god who toys with us and gives us suffering.

One and three are easy to deal with. If there is no god, or a god who set the universe in motion and is no longer involved, our prayers are not heard.  That does not mean that prayers are of no value.  Prayer helps us get clear about what we want.  A clear “want list” is helpful for personal happiness. Without it there is a general malaise, a feeling that things just aren’t right. Prayer can help to crystallize one’s thinking. Prayer can help us to see what we want and how to get there.  And prayer can help us see that what we want is out of our reach and if we need to find a way to deal with the loss. In these ways prayer is of value even to the atheist. 

If there is a malevolent god who toys with us, our prayers aren’t going to be answered. Personally I don’t believe in the possibility of this type of god.  It makes no sense to me that someone powerful enough to create the universe would want to interfere with the creatures in it. There is order in the universe.  If it was created, it doesn’t make sense that the order of the stars and galaxies would remain but the personal lives of intelligent beings would be tampered with in a malevolent way.

Now let’s suppose there is a benevolent god who created the universe and everything in it.  . . . In catholic school I was taught that God is perfect, that God loves me, that God watched over me, that God cares about me, that God takes care of me. This is the God that I choose to believe in.

We love our kids. We try to do what is best for them. We give them food and shelter. We send them to the best schools we can afford. We take them to the doctor, not only when they are sick, but when we think they need a checkup or a shot.. We love them and we treat them as if we love them. We grant them some of their wishes and deny others. We try to anticipate their needs and desires and grant them before they even know them.

If god is all wise and God loves us, wouldn’t God give us what we need or want before we even know we need or want it? Wouldn’t God allow pain if it was in our long term interest like we allow the doctor to give our kids shots?  God allows our pain for reasons we do not understand. If we really believe in God’s greatness and caring should we not be grateful for all we have, both the joyful and the painful?  My cancer may be God’s equivalent of my kid’s flu shot.  Cancer may be just what I need, even if it kills my body.  If I believe in a caring personal, loving God I must accept what happens to me as God’s will. God being perfect and all knowing and caring and loving, what is happening to me must be good and right even if I don’t understand.  Whatever I’m given is given with love. I should be grateful. I should pray “Thank You!”

 I do not understand poverty, disease, war, child suffering or other unpleasant things that happen to people. But if I have faith in a loving God I must accept things as they are. If I am inspired by a loving God I must do good as I see it. So I contribute to alleviating suffering to whatever extent I can.

So, the only two prayers that are appropriate are “Thank you.” and “Thy will be done.”

Praying for God to be different or to act different or to give me something else is fruitless. It is even arrogant. God is perfect, I am not. What right have I to ask God to change?

  ——————————————————————————————————————————————

Dan Fischer lives in Ashland. He occasionally teaches at OLLI at SOU. His blog is www.danielcfischer.com or google “The Crazy Mud Caper.” —–

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Imagine by Jim Hatton

IMAGINE

Thank You John Lennon for the Inspiration

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And you will be free

 

 Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will be no Judgement

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will no Punishment

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will be no Heaven or Hell

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will no need to Worship

           

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there be no religion

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will be nothing to kill or die for

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will be no need for greed or hunger

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will be no need for countries or borders

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And there will be no possessions

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And that will be the reward itself.

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And you will live in the Now

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And you will start to see the Divine in all.

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And you will live in Joy

 

Imagine a God who loves all unconditionally…

            And you will see God see Itself in you

 

 Imagine a God who loves you unconditionally…

            And you will find Peace

 

God loves you unconditionally……

 

 

In Love and Peace,

 

Jim Hatton 

 

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Joy is Infectious – by Victoria Leo

Joy is Infectious, Part I  - By Victoria Leo

 What do you think is the most popular category for re-pins on Pinterest and for responses and shares on Facebook?  Inspirational sayings, right?  Part of it is a reflection of economic realities.  Having economic fears and anxieties simply means that you’re aware and paying attention. Our health is a legitimate concern as well.  For the first time in history, life expectancy and overall health measures of adult Americans are declining.  [If none of these categories apply to you, have compassion and generosity for the rest of us.]

In a reality where glib “don’t worry; be happy” platitudes are lacking in wisdom as well as empathy, how can someone like me insist that Happiness is the goal of ALL of my programs? 

The first reason is physical health.  Anxiety and worry depresses your immune system, raises your blood pressure (which damages kidneys and arteries and leads to premature death and an end to sexual function), and wrecks your skin. 

The second is that joy is infectious.  All your other problems start easing, when you approach other people with a glow.  You can talk your bankers into outrageous rule-changes, you can encourage discounts and more-time-to-pay from nearly everyone, you can blind hiring managers to your flaws and weaknesses, and you can convince everyone else to have hope for their future as well.  You can even have the faith to commit to healing of long-festering problems if your expectation for your future changes.  One caveat:  Don’t allow a preference for a positive twist on your situation to morph into suppressing your first duty to tell yourself and others the truth about your life.  But joy can be part of Truth, too.

Carve out time in your day, every day, for joy.  Joy is your natural state when you are fully present in your body, in your reality.  So –

  • Stop rushing from place to place, so you have time to breathe deeply and look up at the clear blue sky or the new daffodils or the cute dog walking your neighbor.
  • Have less things on your to-do list, if you have to, but make time for Reiki, tapping (EFT), yoga and meditation.
  • Give yourself time to breathe and be still, accomplishing nothing tangible, unless you count better physical health, sharper thinking and – joy.   As one of my Pinterest pins reminds me, “It’s just a bad day, not a bad life.”

And make time, at least once a week, to be creative. 

  • Build something.  Go to a craft shop, just walk around and when something catches your heart, don’t talk yourself out of it, second-guess or shame yourself.  Buy it. Take it home.  Try it out.  When you let go of the desire to “do a good job,” and get others’ approval, not only do you create great art – because “great art” is anything that is an authentic reflection of your feelings and your vision – but you will feel such an intense upwelling of pure joy, it will take your breath away.  Keep going into mindfulness, to keep the critical voices at bay.  It is the PROCESS of the creation that reduces stress, gives you new insights into your life and makes you bubble with joy.
  • Learn a new skill.  There are hundreds of tactile skills like crochet.  Sign up on www.Coursera.org  for free online courses,  the local SOU OLLI, or another learning site.  When you are learning, your pre-frontal cortex lights up, and when it lights up, so do your joy circuits.  And your Pride in Yourself circuits.  You deserve to feel that good. People like the Dalai Lama, who encourage you to seek joy in the midst of your troubles (while also having compassion for your legitimate pain and difficulty), are your true North Star if you want a life that soars.

Next week – Joy Part II

Bio: Victoria Leo offers both science-based and spiritual solutions that really work! Visit www.soaringdragon.biz and choose the program that will transform your life.  You deserve to soar with dragons! Victoria’s Facebook group Healing Minds, Healing Bodies welcomes you, as does her blog SoaringDragoninJapan.blogspot.com. You can find her books on Amazon or at Bloomsbury Books.

 

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    The Inner Peace blog is a place to share wisdom about peace practices and inspire, learn and explore all aspects of inner peace. A team of writers will discuss varied qualities –€” intuition, courage, fearlessness, friendship, forgiveness, gentleness, giving and receiving, tolerance, faithfulness and kindness –€” that help us all through the tough times, the challenges, the joys and the sorrows with inner peace as the ever-shining goal. Whether 2 or 92, your inner peace is up to you.
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