Saturday, November 26, 2011

Almost a month later

I used to attend a church with a woman who was more than 60 pounds overweight, irritable and unhappy. In a YEAR she had a major transformation to a svelte, happy, easygoing, conscious and loving human being. I asked her the secret? She said that it was just about changing her consciousness.  For me, it is yet another 30 days of exercise and (mostly) vegetarianism and, again, my body resists. 


Rhonda Britten says, 'Letting go is having the courage to give up dreams that no longer serve you and to look around at reality.'


I realize that it is my ego that is resisting. It's not me. And I realize that my ego wants to 'go back' to the past. My dreams are often of what 'was', not what 'is.' Yes, it has been a month, but until just recently my intention was set on 'repeat' not 're-create.'


Today I look around and let go of the dreams that no longer serve me, and I begin anew. Let the Universe decide. Who Am I? I will no longer allow the faded pictures in my head dictate who I am today. 


Today is the first day of the best of my life. See it, Say it, Know it, Believe it.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Nothing so far

Went 21 days of vegan until I left for Texas. Ate lots of non-vegan food but only for one day. Exercised right up until I left for Texas. Lost no weight. What was my expectation? But I feel like my body may be changing shape. 


My therapist said that I had too many restrictions, too many 'boxes.' I know it's because I have had too many experiences with my various addictions. That seems to be my greatest fear - every time I think I have overcome one addiction, another one appears. Shopping, Sex, Alcohol, Gambling. Geez. What's next? 


Met a man and fell in love for 24 hours. That was fun.


Discovered a guy who wrote a book called 'The Cause Within You.' I might start teaching adults how to read. I might even consider teaching those same folks how to dance.


I'm going to L.A. in November. It seems imperative to me now. I have two places to visit. Agape and the Dream Center. Maybe my motivation is just around the corner...


Don't give up!


November 1st I begin my next round of spiritual exercises. Debbie Ford has a 21 day Consciousness Detox. That's what I'm doing next. Will continue to pursue vegetarian and vegan food options. Another 21 days. Watch what happens...


I am Divine Order Now Expressing.



Saturday, October 8, 2011

And on the seventh day...

On October 1, 2011, I began a 90-day commitment to meditation, exercise, and veganism. Doing the meditation has not been a challenge because I am currently doing one of Deepak Chopra's guided meditations. Exercising has not been a challenge because it's part of being a coach for Team Beachbody so I would be doing it anyway. And the Veganism has not been a challenge because I was a vegetarian before so this choice not to eat meat is not unfamiliar to me. Since it has only been a week, I don't have much to report. It was not hard replacing meals. The meditation helps me focus for the day. And the exercise is doing - well, just what exercise does!


I attended a fabulous event last weekend. It was the VMSN Gala. My doctor has initiated a project that she is passionate about and she is thriving! They are the Volunteers in Medicine of Southern Nevada. I am so proud of her. And I had a wonderful time at the event. Got all dressed up in my 'Shakespeare' best and even had my picture taken several times, including a copy to bring home! I even bought a claddagh ring from the Silent Auction.


I had to move my location at work this week because they broke down the cubicles we were sitting in. It was Billy, Me, Mary and Steve Casey. I now sit in Judy Ellzey's old seat. Mary is sitting where one of the RDS computers used to be. I'm the only one sitting two rows away. I like it.


I am ready for the discipline required to live a Spiritual life. I am ready for the discipline required for a commitment to leaving less of a carbon footprint on this planet. I am ready to be all that I can be!


Your life is God's gift to you; what you do with it is your gift to God.

Friday, September 30, 2011

And so it begins

It has been an interesting time these past few months. Sorry that I left. I'm back now. There is so much to tell, much of it unrelated to everything else, but with a common theme. The Magic is Back! For the record, one of the reasons that I am here is that I want to chronicle an adventure that I am about to pursue for the next 90 days. Meditation, Exercise and Veganism (based on a book of the same name by Kathy Freston.) I was a vegetarian for much of my youth, so it's not such a big leap. It's mostly about commitment. So I have given myself Oct 1-Dec 31 (give or take a day or two) to discover if a major shift can/will take place based on my making a disciplined commitment to peace, harmony, laughter, love, joy, celebration and gratitude!


Stay tuned!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Prayer without Ceasing

For a long time now, I have endeavored to discover what 'Prayer without Ceasing' means. I have taken classes, made marvelous discoveries, and been moved to laughter as well as tears. Meditation has brought me closer than I ever imagined to Spirit within. I have even had moments at work where I have spent 2-3 hours so intensely engaged that when I am done it is as if I have just woken up!

But that’s unconscious. And when I’m conscious my brain plays reruns of all kinds of negative experiences and harmful, depressing thoughts and ideas. 

How do I overcome this?

I have discovered that 'Prayer without Ceasing' is personal. It is whatever you say it is. Everyone has their own understanding, beliefs, and faith and definition of 'prayer.' For this reason, this is going to be MY definition of 'Prayer without Ceasing.' For me, this is about Awareness, Clarity and Unconditional Love. To me, Prayer without Ceasing means to overcome negative self-talk with a prayer of forgiveness; overcome negative reruns in our brain by invoking the power of the spoken word (albeit softly!) because it is difficult to run a movie in our head and talk at the same time. We overcome sadness with thoughts of gladness. We dispel the intense negative energy with positive passionate thoughts and words. And we must do this all day – every day.

Awareness – In the course of a day they say that (find figure) thoughts go through our minds. If we could just let them go, that would be okay. But we stop to think about what we’re thinking about and the next thing you know – you’re thinking negative thoughts about your thoughts. So, you must stay alert and aware of what you are thinking all the time. Sometimes we are concentrating on our work and we think about what we are doing or what we have to do next. It is in the spaces between, when we are doing things that do not require our total concentration that we begin to get in trouble. Memorize a few mantras, a couple affirmations, a chant or two, and when you notice that you are not thinking about what you’re working on, say these to yourself over and over until you are again focused either on what you are doing, or your mind is just drifting – clouds, sea, ocean waves – easy stuff.

Clarity – It is important to get clear about what you are thinking about when you are not thinking specifically about what you are doing. For example, I am concentrating very carefully about what I am saying in what I am typing. Part of my consciousness is aware of the location of the keys while I type; another part is developing what I am going to say next. Total Concentration.  However, if I were just sitting and staring at my computer right now, what would come into my mind? It is imperative that we begin to follow these thoughts. Are they good thoughts? Planning dinner with friends? Replaying positive conversations with co-workers? Or are they negative thoughts about negative conversations with co-workers – about another co-worker; or how to get back at someone for something they did? Or are you predicting how you are going to respond to a situation that might happen when you get back from break/class/lunch? Are you thinking about why your boss has called you to their office? Worrying? Beckwith says ‘worrying is rehearsing for something you don’t want to have happen.’ This would be a good time to call in a favorite chant or prayer. This would be a good time to say ‘Thank you’ and then begin to tick off a list of things you are thankful for, beginning with your five senses and your Third Eye. Try listing non-material things in your life – love, friendship, joy, laughter, grace – and if you run out of those, you can list material things – food, shelter, clothing – then you can start singing/saying the words to a positive, uplifting song. And then, if you must, start all over again.

Unconditional Love – The phrase ‘Let Go, and Let God’ usually refers to situations where we don’t have control. We think we do, but individually, without great perseverance, we cannot influence the Federal Government, the State, the Police Department, or the guy driving down the freeway like a lunatic – we can only Love. Beckwith says that if we use the intensity and passion with which we disparage to uplift, our lives would change dramatically. With the same intensity or passion that we want to call out and shout obscenities, or disagree with the Police Officer, or badmouth the President, Beckwith suggests that what if instead we said, ’Why am I so damned blessed?’ ‘Who knew how great my life could be?’ ‘Look at all these blessings raining down on me every day’ ‘How wonderful it is to be loved by God.’ Scream, Shout, Cry or Chant these things instead of the negative things you might say instead. Think 'Unconditional Love' instead of anger, vengeance or hate. Prayer without Ceasing. Try it. Let me know.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

How do you define your feelings?

Thomas Hardy said - "It is difficult for a woman to define her feelings in a language which is chiefly made by men to express theirs."

When I was a child, my mother sent me to ballet school so I wouldn't walk with a swayed back. When I was old enough, I chose to take Modern Dance and, at the time, Afro Jazz, and then Modern Jazz. I ultimately joined a dance company in my early 20s.

I danced a lot and did a lot of amateur performing whenever I had the opportunity. I wanted to be a dancer in college, but my mother discouraged me. Arguably, that could be the reason I dropped out the first time. In my next round of college, I often auditioned for plays as a 'dancer', but soon they started casting me as an 'actor.' I was still the Dance captain a lot of the time, but I started to get speaking parts!

I never stopped writing. I moved from being onstage to backstage. I stopped dancing. I stopped performing. But I never lost my muse. I do not purport to be an actor, but I am, and I will always be, a dancer. It's in my blood. And I am and will always be, a writer. What I can no longer say with my body, I must say with my words, for it must be said!


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

She said

It may well be that in a difficult hour I might be driven to sell your love for peace, or trade the memory of this night for food. It may well be. I do not think I would. - Edna St. Vincent Millay

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Abandonment - Faith

Today, I will use two quotes from Anaïs Nin that are perfect.

"We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are." – Anaïs Nin
I have been journaling for most of my adult life. I actually started journaling as a teenager.  I would buy random notebooks and keep copious notes and messages, commenting on the state of my life on a fairly regular basis and evaluating it as well. My mother worked for the Federal Government and they used to have hard bound green ‘Record Books’ which I would get one or two of a year and I often  used those.
I started to journal in formal, decoratively designed books with lined pages in my late teens. My boyfriend bought me my first fancy journal for my birthday when I was 19. I subsequently bought them for myself, or was often given one for my birthday or Christmas. When the pages would run out at a non-gift related time of year, I would buy one for myself.
I kept these journals faithfully until the summer of 1975 when my Mother died. It wasn’t until the spring of 1977, and after I had relocated to the West Coast, that I felt I could even journal again without crying. And I made many of those notes in other places, because it was as if I didn’t want to record any part of what I felt like that year in a ‘formal’ journal. It was many years later before I even felt comfortable to write it down and make it a permanent part of my ‘real’ journal. I had recorded lots of impressions and emotions elsewhere – on legal pads, in spiral-bound notebooks, but not anywhere that I might find it if I was accidentally flipping through pages of my ‘formal’ journal, lest it remind me of the pain.
But once I wrote it in my ‘formal’ journal, I decided I wouldn’t go back and read it. And after a while, just to be safe, I decided that once I recorded anything, I wouldn’t go back and read any of it again. That was my first mistake. And how do we learn from our mistakes without hindsight?
I would write in my journal for days or weeks at a time, but I would not go back and re-read. I felt like writing it down was enough, and that would make whatever it was go away.  Rumpelstiltskin - If you name it, it goes away, right? Wrong. Once you name it, you have called it into existence, and then it is there for you to deal with, come to terms with, work through, and come out the other side of or have it haunt you into eternity. That was the painful yet glorious lesson I only recently realized.

"And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." — Anaïs Nin
After one traumatic day where I drank myself into a stupor and literally passed out on my bathroom floor, and another day in which I literally sobbed, wailed and cried for hours, I knew it was time. But to do it, I had to go back. Not so far back as to re-live past traumas, only far enough for me to see a pattern. And I found it. I have spent most of my entire adult life claiming lack and limitation. There it was. Abandonment - lack of Love. When my Mother died, emotionally I also lost my Dad and both of my sisters.  That was my initial entry into Lack of Love. But I had rebuilt that support system and I was thriving, things were going well and then, the unthinkable, I had to move away from the system that it had taken me so long to rebuild. Since I hadn’t dealt with the initial abandonment issue, it reared its ugly head again. And that’s when it began to manifest in all of my subsequent experiences. It manifested itself as lack of Money, lack of Support, lack of Job, lack of Self-worth and lack of Faith - all stemming from the original declaration of Abandonment - the lack of Love.
I knew I had issues. I made a list. I wrote how I interpreted each one with their own singular issue of Abandonment. Each one was post-mortem of my Mother and an unresolved event in my life.  I went back.  I re-examined my part and decided that none of the situations had anything to do with me personally.  I did not leave them, they left me. I am alright. I am perfect, whole and complete. I lack for nothing. Then I finally realized…
The Universe is my Source. I know that there is no lack.  There is no abandonment. I know that there is only Peace and only Love. I claim Peace and Love. I know that there is no fear, only Faith and only Joy. I claim Faith and Joy. I know that there is none other than Divine Spirit as the One Source of All. I now claim that I am One with that Source of All. There can only be One.

I now claim Joy, Faith, Peace, Abundance and Love in my life.
Where? Right here.
When? Right now.
And so it is.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Synchronicity

I've been taking classes at church for a while now and tonight is the last night of my most recent undertaking. It's interesting that this class was about the answer to the question of who and what we are in and of God. It is a measurement of how far we have come from our first Recognition to our final Realization that who and what we are IS God.
So I get a daily reading from Iyanla Vanzant and it's always timely. My cousin once said that if you pay close attention, you'll see that it is ALL related. And I found that to be true. One week, back in college, my Journalism class, my Anthropology class, and my Science class were all studying the same indigenous group of people for different reasons seeking different conclusions, but it was the very same group in every class! It was my 'Aha' moment.
Back to the subject, it is interesting to see the synchronicity in things, because the more you see it, the more it happens. One recent experience was that we were studying Unifying our relationship with our Higher Power and I was surfing the net, came upon a site for A Course in Miracles and the message for the day that I clicked on was "I am One self, united with the Creator." Duh!
And tonight, as our class ends, and we talk about what we've learned and how we've grown and what we know for sure, Iyanla's message today:
Today I am devoted to experiencing and expressing the powerful and peaceful presence of God in me!

Get it? Got it? Good...

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Today, a quote from Thomas Merton

Beloved Creator... I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you
does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this you will lead me
by the right road though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore I will trust you always
though I may seem to be lost
and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for you are ever with me,
and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.

Thomas Merton, 1915-1968 (Adapted)
Trappist Monk, Author, Poet and Social Activist

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Biscuits


We made biscuits, my mother and I. It was a Saturday morning ritual. I was living with my boyfriend in West Philadelphia and she was still living up in Mt Airy. We might talk for a minute now and then during the week, but always, our catch up call was Saturday. She would tell me the trials and tribulations of work, or my sisters, stories about family members and stories about people that we were both aware of through our weekly conversations. 
I would call around 8 A.M.
“Good Morning,” I would say cheerfully.
“Good to hear your voice,” she would reply.
“So, what do I do first?” And she would instruct me to measure flour into the bowl and then knead the shortening into it with two knives. I’d cradle the phone on my shoulder and our stories would begin. When the biscuit dough turned to pebbles, she would advise me to turn on the oven.
We had an interesting oven. It didn’t have a thermostat. The way to decide at what temperature to cook things was based solely on the length of the flame. I would look at the flames and decide that ‘blue’ was for stuff that was frozen that just needed to heat up. “Yellow tips” was the ‘standard’ baking temperature for most things - chicken, fish, meat loaf. ‘Roaring Tips’ was for fast cooking things like French fries or if we wanted to grill something (like fresh fish) in just a few minutes. So I set the oven on ‘Yellow tips’ and continued conversing with my Mom.
“Only add a couple tablespoons of buttermilk, you want it to be the right texture when you begin to knead it.” And I would dutifully count out the tablespoons of buttermilk – I think it was 6 – and then turn the mixture out onto the bread board.
We would continue to tell stories as I punched and kneaded the dough.
“So, are you ready to cut the biscuits?” she would ask. That meant that if I had been kneading the whole time, the dough would be ready. If not, I would answer, “Not quite,” and then impart one last short story. At last, I would roll it out flat.
I’d get a glass and dump a stack of flour on the countertop. I would twist the top of the glass into the flour and then twist it into the rolled out dough.
“Well,” she would say, “that’s about all the tales I have to tell today”; or she would say “Call your sister today”; or “Come over for dinner next weekend”; which would indicate that it was time to put the biscuits in the oven and that our conversation was coming to a close. If I had one last story to tell, I would tell it then, or I would agree with whatever her request and sign off the conversation as I put the biscuits in the oven.
It was a wonderful time of my life. I always remember it fondly. I always remember her fondly. I love my Mom, even though she’s gone, I’ll always love my Mom.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Knowing


When we look into the sky, we are also looking out of the sky. There is sky above and below us, all around us. We are a speck in the eye of the Universe. We are but a blip on the radar of the One. The One Divine Spirit through which all things are and do and have their being. 

When we touch a thing, does it not touch us back? When we see a thing, does it not see us back? Life is a cycle of giving and receiving. We do not interrupt this cycle. If we do not see a thing, that someone else sees, does not negate its existence. If we do not have a thing, that someone else has, does not automatically give it value. Not having it or not seeing it is irrelevant. 

KNOWING is what matters. Knowing that there is a power greater than ourselves behind all that there is. Knowing that there is a Spirit inherent in all things, is all that there is to know. Knowing that there is One Source of All Creation, One Presence and One Power and knowing that power is ours to manifest what would be our highest good is all that there is to know. 

Releasing control of that power is the same as unleashing that power to do what it does best. It is not for us to see, it is for us to know. It is not for us to question, it is for us to believe. Believing in a thing is what makes it real. It is done unto you AS you believe – as YOU believe – and as you BELIEVE.

I believe in Fairies. 

Won’t you clap your hands as hard and as loud as you can with me and help me bring Tinkerbell back to life?