As difficult as the news is every day, as much as the media has a need to keep us informed of dark, depressing matters, there is equal goodness all around us. (I know that a good deal of us have suffered losses that can only be measured in tears, and that the pain can linger. When enough time has passed, we take little steps back into life, working up the courage to take a swing at living again. I guess that’s the point–that we all know what loss is and yet, most of us get through it and carry on anyway. Really, what are our alternatives?)
Here my amazing online friends share here their tender stories of connection, compassion and love, for wherever there is union and healing, there is Love. We must all remember our own stories of care and goodness, both given and received, and we must share them, for they are needed now. We must share our stories until they become a Love-tsunami more powerful than any of the physical kind. The miracle of being alive now is the miracle of healing. We are all called to share great Love and oneness with each other and All That Is. We are called!
Here is a correspondence between Mike Hopkins, Michael Brine and Maggie. Continue reading
Oh, such beautiful and wise words, Mike Hopkins!
Original Post: http://mnhopkins.blogspot.se/2016/07/go-forth-this-day-poem-by-mn-hopkins.html
I’ve written about love and compassion here quite a bit, so it’s to be expected that I would have to face my own fears and shadow self, and see my own doubts and then, to be honest with myself and you, share them along the way. Though my childhood in this life would not be called easy, I sense that I brought some darkness with me, a darkness that has shown itself as nagging doubts about my self-worth, my spiritual commitment and whether or not I am truly loved by God. In the past, the feeling has come as an overwhelming wave of self-hate. I’m writing about this because this blog is a part of my journey.
Years ago I made a necklace that came into being looking like a simple Native Indian work. It prompted me to pull a box off my bookshelf book called Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams and David Carson, which includes a wisdom-book and a smaller box of Medicine Cards, painted by Angela Werneke, of a variety of animals. Drawing the cards from the deck with a spiritual purpose, I am tapping into Native Indian philosophy and wisdom.
The authors of Medicine Cards explain,
“Our intention, as shamans and healers, is to begin a process for many people who have never understood their connection to Mother Earth and her creatures … [and] of what it means to walk in balance on the Earth Mother. Our dream animals have asked for our assistance in spreading the understanding that all life is sacred.
When calling on the power of an animal, you are asking to be drawn into complete harmony with the strength of that creature’s essence. Gaining understanding from these brothers and sisters of the animal kingdom is a healing process and must be approached with humility and intuitiveness.”
I had used this book before and looked through a bunch of files and I found my notes, dated April 24, 2001. That day, I found my nine Totem Animals (guides that remain the same for a lifetime); used the Pathway Spread to learn about life-lessons patterns; and the Moon Lodge Spread, to learn the state of my personal unconscious, to uncover the lies and self-deceptions I had been using to thwart my spiritual growth. I guess that explains why I didn’t pick up the book again until ten years later. Chicken wasn’t one of the totem animals, but, cluck-cluck, it applies here.
I looked inside the book and found another spread called the Medicine Wheel. ‘Medicine’ in the Native Indian way is defined in the book as:
“Anything that improves one’s connection to the Great Mystery and to all of life…Medicine is also anything that brings personal power, strength, and understanding. It is the constant living of life in a way that brings healing to the Earth Mother and all associates, family, friends, and fellow creatures…it is an all-encompassing ‘way of life,’ for it involves walking on the Earth Mother in perfect harmony with the Universe.”
Wow–walking on the Earth Mother in perfect harmony with the universe. How many of us walk in this manner, giving thanks to the Great Spirit for everything in our lives and to the animals and plants who give their lives to become our food? It is a worthwhile goal, one I hope is not impossible.
The Medicine Wheel spread is used to reflect on the personality and to see how we learn from ourselves, other people and animals. Sounded good to me. After shuffling, I drew five cards and placed them on a table in the four directions, East, South, West and North and one in the center, which is the Sacred Mountain Card. Each direction has its own meaning.
There are two messages for each card, one if the card is right-side up when you pull it out and one if the card is upside-down, which the authors refer to as ‘Contrary.’ My shadow-self doesn’t want to share the cards I drew, but my Higher Self does:
**The first card, East, represents where our spiritual strengths lie and the challenges to seeing clearly in the present situation.
EAST: Moose. Is about not needing approval, and experiencing the joy of a job well done, about the joy in giving encouragement but also in warning. Moose is about a new sense of self and accomplishment. Contrary Message: Ego can ruin a sense of accomplishment. It is about tooting my own horn and failing to be interested in others. It is a need to recognize that everyone is a teacher for everyone else, and there is a need to grow quiet for a while to let wisdom enter my heart.
**Second is South, with the animal guide helping our inner children learn what we need to nurture and to trust ourselves.
SOUTH: Blue Heron. Blue Heron indicates an unawareness of who I am and where I belong. Follow intuition and begin the journey of self-realization. Low self-worth and self-pity means I will never truly understand my true potential. A lack of courage in facing the critical enemy within. See my motives, actions, feelings, dreams, goals, strengths and weakness. Contrary Message: Too much self-reflection can lead to self-obsession. If criticizing self, watch out! It is imprudent to drown the sense of joy that accompanies the journey of self-discovery. Perfection leaves no room for being human. Our most valuable lessons are learned from our mistakes. Balance the desire to change with gentle discernment. Dive deep into feelings and emerge renewed, not judgmental, rigid, and flat, which breaks the spirit. Do not expect to find the many layers of truth and wholeness in one dive. Don’t hold my breath for enlightenment or let the collective feelings of humanity drown me.
**Third is West, showing the internal solution to present life challenges and what we need to reach our goals.
WEST: Dog. Serving others or humanity in some way. The guardian embodies the loving gentleness of the best friend with the protective energy regarding territory. Delve deeply into my sense of service to others. Have I forgotten that I owe allegiance to my personal truth? Have the opinions of others jaded my loyalty to a friend? Have I ignored someone who is trying to be my friend? Have I been loyal and true to my goals?
**Fourth is North, which integrates the other cards and is the key to walking in wisdom by connecting to our highest purpose and intentions.
NORTH: Antelope. Knowledgeable action. Symbolizes the antenna of the hair, which attaches us to the Great Mystery. Action is the key and the essence of living. Antelope medicine gives strength of mind and heart. Call on antelope when balled up. Antelope sends ingenious solutions. Antelope indicates a higher purpose and forces action for self, family, clan, nation and Mother Earth. It is time—do it now.
**Fifth is the card in the center of the spread; it shows how to see the present as a crossroads of spiritual and physical realities and how they have melded, to show whether or not we are in balance and what to do about it.
CENTER: Deer. Deer is the gentle spirit, filled with love and compassion for all. With love, deer moves the bullies away from the door to the Great Spirit. Creates safety. Contrary Message: Means I’m courting my fears by fighting the internal demons of negative ideas. Need to love myself enough to deeply feel my fears and let them go. The balance to power is the love and compassion of Deer, who teaches unconditional love, accessed from the heart space of the Great Spirit who loves us all.
I really love these cards. With them, for whatever the reasons, I can count on honest guidance from the Divine, even if it’s hard to face. This is a priceless gift and I give my gratitude to Jamie Sams and David Carson, their mentors and all of dear Mother Nature’s Creature-Teachers. Thank you, Friends.
Medicine Cards is a book of sincere and profound wisdom, for all who want to see the truth of our personalities and our spiritual natures; and to make more meaningful relationships with nature.
I’ve gathered posts (from this blog) about my spiritual journey back into the Light into an E-book called “Seek Find Be Light.” I pray reading it will help others the way receiving these loving messages helped me to heal. It can be downloaded, free, at Smashwords.
If you don’t have an ebook reader, and would like to read this ebook (or any other) on your desktop computer, you can download these free reading programs:
No download required for Google. You can read online from any device.
KOBO’s electronic reader
I pray these compassionate words make a difference. 🙂
If you have any comments, questions or other thoughts, I hope to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org. God bless us, every one.
At times like this, when nine people are slaughtered because of the color of their skin while praying in their church, words are hollow. But I remember fifty years ago when it seemed, from the outside at least, that light was being shed on the forces behind racism, and new understanding and acceptance were taking root. I thought it was the dawning of the Age of Aquarius.
I was wrong. For the sake of all the families who have lost loved ones to fanaticism, isn’t it time we identify the root cause of intolerance?’ This dangerous emotion lives in feelings of superiority, pride, fear and hate. Why has racism become so dangerously common? Is it the acceptance and fanning of extremist ideas? Is it mental illness? Why and how have the many facets of human existence—religion, politics, economics, education, health, culture—all become so polarized? Aren’t we responsible for this? Why is it now the norm NOT to cooperate for the higher good?
There is a fascination today, and I am not digressing here, with the paranormal: ghosts, vampires, demons, etc., in novels, TV shows and movies. On some level, we humans understand there is more to these stories than meets the eye. Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925), was an Austrian mystic, philosopher, social reformer, architect, and esotericist who saw into spiritual worlds. He consistently spoke of the battle between light and dark forces and the effects of spiritual beings on the physical world. If we don’t reverse the trend of the ever-expanding problem of violent intolerance, Steiner says life could end in a War of All Against All.
Steiner, the founder of Anthroposophy (a path of insight which leads the spiritual in the human being to the spiritual in the cosmos), was a deeply devout man and while it may not be fair to him or to the reader to pull out a few paragraphs of his spiritual lingo from the book NATURE SPIRITS, his ideas are pertinent to the heart-wrenching issue of the growing and violent partisanship of our times:
“Matters which have a harmful result on the etheric body are bad laws, or bad social measures prevailing in a community. All that leads to want of harmony, all that makes for bad adjustments between people [causes] the accumulation in the etheric body . . . [of] detachments from beings working in the spiritual worlds [which are] now found in our environment—they are ‘spectres’ or ‘ghosts.’ We see [them] grow out of the life of human beings . . . For one who is able to see things spiritually, [the] physical body is crammed with phantoms, [the] etheric body crammed with specters. As a rule after a person’s death, all this rises up and disperses and populates the world.” Continue reading
“From his clairvoyant reading of the Akashic Record — the cosmic memory of all events, actions, and thoughts — Rudolf Steiner was able to speak of aspects of the life of Jesus Christ that are not contained in the four biblical Gospels. Such research can be spoken of as a fifth gospel. After an intense inner struggle to verify the exact nature of these events, and checking the results of his research, Steiner describes many detailed episodes from the Akashic Record. This new edition has been retranslated and features six lectures that have never before been published in English.”
Review Reprinted From: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/627391.The_Fifth_Gospel
Author Page at Goodreads:
Steiner led this movement through several phases. In the first, more philosophically oriented phase, Steiner attempted to find a synthesis between science and mysticism; his philosophical work of these years, which he termed spiritual science, sought to provide a connection between the cognitive path of Western philosophy and the inner and spiritual needs of the human being.
In a second phase, beginning around 1907, he began working collaboratively in a variety of artistic media, including drama, the movement arts (developing a new artistic form, eurythmy) and architecture, culminating in the building of a cultural center to house all the arts, the Goetheanum.
After the First World War, Steiner worked with educators, farmers, doctors, and other professionals to develop Waldorf education, biodynamic agriculture, anthroposophical medicine as well as new directions in numerous other practical areas.
Steiner advocated a form of ethical individualism, to which he later brought a more explicitly spiritual component. He based his epistemology on Johann Wolfgang Goethe’s world view, in which ‘Thinking … is no more and no less an organ of perception than the eye or ear. Just as the eye perceives colours and the ear sounds, so thinking perceives ideas.’ A consistent thread that runs from his earliest philosophical phase through his later spiritual orientation is the goal of demonstrating that there are no essential limits to human knowledge.”
Reprinted From: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2593.Rudolf_Steiner
STEINER RELATED LINKS: http://www.anthroposophy.org/, http://www.rudolfsteinerweb.com/, http://www.anthromed.org/, http://www.rsarchive.org/, http://www.thechristiancommunity.org/, http://rudolfsteinerquotes.wordpress.com/
I am very happy to post this information about a new film that details the life of Paramahansa Yogananda. I cannot wait to see it myself, for it was the writings of the Swami from India that opened my heart to Jesus Christ. Just as Christ did, Paramahansa Yogananda embodied divine love on Earth.
On January 5, 2015, tens of thousands of yogis and spiritual seekers around the world will commemorate the anniversary of Paramahansa Yogananda’s birth. Yogananda (author of the acclaimed spiritual book Autobiography of a Yogi) has been hailed as the “Father of Yoga in the West” for his pioneering role in making known India’s ancient philosophy of Yoga and its time-honored tradition of meditation.
Just as Yogananda (1893-1952) filled lecture halls to capacity across the country in the 1920s and 1930s to teach the techniques and benefits of yoga meditation, the film about his extraordinary life, AWAKE: The Life of Yogananda, is drawing thousands of filmgoers to theatres around the country today.
The award-winning film, AWAKE: The Life of Yogananda, which debuted in October 2014, details the human struggles the Swami from India faced as he traveled across the U.S. during a time of religious intolerance and racism, as well as the profound impact that his teachings still have today. He made an indelible impression on the spiritual landscape of the United States by encouraging people to seek a more personal relationship with God through meditation, a radical idea in the early 20th century. The film’s success continues to grow as spiritual seekers, yogis, and film fans alike flock to theatres across North America.
With so many seekers focused on this beloved spiritual figure’s yoga teachings as a result of the film (which has screened or is scheduled to screen in more than 85 theaters in the U.S. and Canada), the following excerpt taken from his published writings is especially relevant as we enter the New Year:
“If you want to be loved, start loving others who need your love….If you want others to sympathize with you, start showing sympathy to those around you. If you want to be respected, you must learn to be respectful to everyone, both young and old….Whatever you want others to be, first be that yourself; then you will find others responding in like manner to you.” – Paramahansa Yogananda
Another timely work is Paramahansa Yogananda’s unprecedented masterwork of inspiration, The Second Coming of Christ, which takes the reader on a profoundly enriching journey through the four Christian Gospels. Verse by verse, he illumines the universal path to oneness with God taught by Jesus to his immediate disciples but obscured through centuries of misinterpretation: how to become like Christ, how to resurrect the Eternal Christ within one’s self.
This landmark work transcends divisive sectarianism to reveal a unifying harmony underlying all true religions. A groundbreaking synthesis of East and West, it imparts the life-transforming realization that each of us can experience for ourselves the promised Second Coming — awakening of the all-fulfilling Divine Consciousness latent within our souls.
Yogananda said, “In titling this work The Second Coming of Christ, I am not referring to a literal return of Jesus to earth. He came two thousand years ago and, after imparting a universal path to God’s kingdom, was crucified and resurrected; his reappearance to the masses now is not necessary for the fulfillment of his teachings. What is necessary is for the cosmic wisdom and divine perception of Jesus to speak again through each one’s own experience and understanding of the infinite Christ Consciousness that was incarnate in Jesus. That will be his true Second Coming.”
For more information about the movie, click on www.awaketheyoganandamovie.com. To learn more about Paramahansa Yogananda and the organization he established, the Self Realization Fellowship, go to http://www.yogananda-srf.org.
A Course In Miracles teaches that there are only two ways of seeing in this world. Through the eyes of Love which is God or through the eyes of the ego which is fear. What you call dark forces, I would call ego misperception. Since God is only Love and God is all there is, anything that is not of God cannot really exist. Yes, it looks and feels real and can be very distracting when we are experiencing it, but if we remember that it isn’t God and therefore is only a harmless illusion we can take our power back and choose to see this through God’s eyes. When we look at everything with God and lift up all fear and darkness to Him, He then can shine His light into the darkness and show us it is nothing.
Remember no matter how it looks, no matter how it feels, no matter how it manifests itself, in your body or in your life, IT IS NOT GOD. If it were God you would be peaceful and filled with love. God is only Love and God is all there is. And so when you call it names like a dark force, or when you see dark faces coming at you, you must believe that whatever this is, it cannot harm you and it cannot interfere with God’s Love that lights you from within. If you can, smile gently at the faces and ask silently, “How can I help you?” Then lift them up to God so He can make the correction from fear into Love. Since you are clearly a visually sensitive person, visualize light around the faces and then visualize them fade into the light and disappear. And then visualize something beautiful like a garden or a rainbow or whatever you find beautiful in this world, a snowy mountain top, a green park with children playing on the playground. You are a writer with a wonderful eye for beauty so choose your place or space and see that instead of the darkness.
The ego is simply a mistaken thought system that we made up to separate ourselves from God. It didn’t work, of course, because we do not have the power or the ability to separate ourselves from our Source, but we can certainly believe that we have. What you are experiencing right now is either your own ego energy trying to distract you or the ego energy of others or a combination of both. I always believe that the fear is mine and in that way I know I made it up and so I can let it go. It often gets so strong that I am tempted to think it is separate from me and outside of me, but I remind myself that there is nothing outside of my mind because I am God’s Creation and there is nothing outside of the Mind of God. Either way, you have the power to choose God in this and free yourself of this experience. GOD’s LOVE IS ALWAYS MORE POWERFUL THAN FEAR.
A Course In Miracles teaches that the only way to weaken ego’s hold on us is to look at it and calmly say, “Oh, there it is again. Fear is back. So what’s new?” and then surrender it. What I do after I remind myself that it isn’t real is to ask God to help me see this through His eyes. Then I can smile gently and let it go. Sometimes it hangs on for a while after I have surrendered it, but then it fades and disappears into love. Of course it will come back and I will have to repeat the process. We must understand that we have accumulated a lot of fear in this lifetime and in past lifetimes. We aren’t going to eliminate it without some work. But at least now we can recognize it as harmless and an illusion and choose God each time that fear arises.
When we are on a spiritual path, ego gets a bit more persistent. It understands that we are releasing our attachment to fear and that makes it more fearful. Without fear the ego cannot exist. It will try to keep our attention and the more we turn to God, the more it wants us to see it instead. But now we can see the ego’s persistence as a good thing, because every time fear arises we are given another opportunity to see what pushes our buttons and where our weaknesses lie. It is only when we are willing to look directly at the fear, understand it is nothing and then surrender it that we can ever be free of it.
Remember, there are only calls for love and extensions of love. A call for love is any brother or sister who is experiencing fear in any form. And if a brother or sister calls for love, it is our function to extend love and as we extend love to another so do we offer it to ourselves. As I offer these words to you, so am I choosing to see my fears another way as well. And thank you for reminding me of what God is teaching us every moment, we are here to be happy and peaceful and joyous and loving. We have no other purpose because that is how God created us. Together let us extend love to the faces and the fear you experience. We are the light of the world and twisted faces and dark forces cannot interfere with that. The laws of God transcend the laws of the world and the laws of dark forces. Now our Love has washed away all fear. God’s Light has shined away all dark forces.
Now, envision yourself as healthy and strong in mind and body. Feel what perfect health would be like and allow yourself to experience the joy of perfect health. Do this any time you think of it and be sure to do this at night before you fall asleep and again in the morning when you awaken.
REMEMBER: FEAR IS NOT REAL! ONLY GOD IS REAL! I CHOOSE GOD NOW AND IN ALL THINGS. And then simply be grateful. Let gratitude flow over you like syrup over pancakes, like sunshine over shadow, like crystal spring water over rocks, like Love from a healed heart.