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Be the change – A meditation for the end of suffering

Be the change – A meditation for the end of suffering

 

There are many suffering right now.

Families in China, and Newtown, CT.

Those displaced by war and famine.

Hungry children.

Elephants and lions creeping towards extinction.

We must not shield our hearts from this knowledge. We need to inquire purposefully into the cycles of destruction and violence, so the endless play of victim and victimizer can finally cease.

It doesn’t take much investigation to notice destruction and violence are as old as our origins. But that is only one part of the story.

If we look deeper still, we can clearly see that we would not have survived had we not cooperated, collaborated and cared for one another. Compassion, love, and kindness are part of our evolutionary success story.

I think our continued success depends on further nourishing these traits. When we take care to develop them, we begin to see the interconnectedness of all life; that everything is sacred. That child. That lion cub. That forest. That body. That mind. All of it is sacred.

And so today, as we walk and move in our lives, let us remember we can make a difference. We have the power to heal, to nourish, and to offer friendship and shelter to all of humanity through our thoughts, deeds and actions.

When we do that, we begin a new cycle of sacred responsibility, anchored in our kinship.

And now, a meditation for you – a nurturing exercise for healing a hurt heart, a broken spirit, or a confused mind.

Take a moment and register what you are feeling. Allow yourself time to identify the deeper currents of your emotions. Breathe deeply into your body, pause a moment, and then slowly, deliberately exhale. Repeat this a few times until you feel yourself relaxing.

Now make your hands into cup shapes (as if you were about to cup some water to drink), and begin to pat your body gently but firmly. Start wherever you feel the your body most needs attention. It could be your chest or your solar plexus. Continue with the rest of your body, making sure you pat everywhere; including your bottocks, the back of your shoulders, legs, feet, etc. This will take some time, but it is worth every second.

This exercise brings blood up to the periphery of our bodies, and that in turn communicates to the body that it is safe. When our circulation moves in such a way, we can let go of contraction, fear, confusion, and even our struggles.

Once you have patted your whole body, inhale deeply and close your eyes. Feel the soothing, energized waves of energy flowing through your body now.

On your next deep breath, ask your Higher self, the wisest, most loving part of your self, to touch your body where it holds the essence that transcends the victim/victimizer equation. You may feel or see the body part.

Breathe into this space, and sense the essence radiating from it. It may be a tingling sensation or a warm feeling. Give yourself a moment to fully connect to it. Now, begin to expand this energy throughout your body.

How does this essence feel? Is it peaceful or loving? Is it a calm awareness. Allow yourself to discern this quality that will transcend the victim/victimizer scenarios.

Now, take another deep breath, and ask your Higher Self to give you a message that will help you understand your part in healing this world. Listen carefully. Ask questions until it is quite clear to you.

Breathe quietly and purposefully, and then open your eyes.

We must be the change we seek in the world. When we recognize this truth and apply it every day of our lives, we become more powerful than governments, corporations and the darkness that destroys our truth.

Be true. Be willing to shine.

Many heartfelt and warm blessings to you.

 

Be the change – A meditation for the end of suffering

Can you ask for what you want?


It seems such a simple thing to do, yet the terrain is riddled with potholes.

Have you ever felt you deserved better pay, or more time off? Are there moments when you want to be heard, but are too afraid to speak?

I think I see a few hands going up.

It’s tough to watch opportunities pass by because we never reached out to grab them. We steadily fill up with regret, resentment and disappointment, and resort to dissing or downplaying others’ successes to cover up our own insecurities. But as we tear down those we consider ‘above’ us, we’re also shredding any positive sense of  self-worth left within us.

So today, we’re going to practice pushing past any obstacles or blocks that get in the way of our desires. We’re going to open up our minds to the wonderful world of YES.

Here we go.

Think of something that you truly want. A pay raise. More attention. Lots of money. A loving partner.

Part One

Take a deep breath in, and breathe out slowly. Do this a few times.

Now ask your body where it holds a conclusion or thought form that says “You won’t get what you want,” or “You don’t deserve to get what you want.”.  It may be a sensation like a knot or a blockage. Expand your awareness into the feeling of this conclusion or thought.

Take a deep breath now and go to the “gut” of this fear. Breathe into the place that blocks you from moving forward. On your next deep breath, ask this place in your body what color it wants to be dissolved and released into the light. Take the first colour/s you perceive, and imagine drawing them directly into the place where your body holds the fear or conclusion. Keep drawing in as much color as your body wants until you feel yourself begin to relax.

Inhale deeply, open your eyes, and shake or jiggle your body to bring yourself back into the present.

Part Two

Take another deep breath, and imagine someone is asking you for the very thing you desire. How would you answer that person?  Visualize yourself replying yes to them with joy, and a sense of, “Of course you can have it, because you so deserve it.”.

Now, imagine another person asking you for something else. In your mind’s eye, see yourself saying yes to them too, with an open heart and gladness.

Envision yet another person asking you for help. Respond again with a loving yes. Share with them how happy you are to be helping them.

This exercise will begin to unlock the manifestation channels in your body that invite possibility and abundance into your life. As with anything, the more you practice saying yes, the easier it will become – not only to give, but also to receive.

Giving and receiving are not distant cousins. They are like yin and yang – one cannot exist without the other. Each requires a willing and welcoming heart.

 

Be the change – A meditation for the end of suffering

Touch the source of life

Cups chip. Flowers blossom. The sun becomes dust and particles.

The cycles of life move always and forever onward. Within this ever-mixing motion of light and dark, creation and destruction, are the seeds of life itself.

It’s amazing how much life is packed inside a seed, no?

Do you ever wonder how much life is packed inside of you?

I hazard it is a great deal more than we will ever utilize or know to celebrate.

For today’s meditation, let’s explore and revel in the mega loads of energy inside of us.

Take a deep breath, and close your eyes.

Listen to your body for a few moments. Your heartbeat. Your breath. Inhale deeply, and feel into the life that is moving in your body, thoughts and feelings. Become aware of the life force that makes you, you. Can you feel its power, its magnitude, its infinite potential?

Breathe into the life force energy that powers your body and moves your imagination. Extend your awareness into the energy that fuels all life. It knows no boundaries or limits. Tap into the boundlessness, within and without. Breathe and expand, and become the energy of life itself. Fecund. Awake. Radiant.

Take a few more deep breaths, and sit in silence – at one with the source of life.

We often forget that this astounding force lies within us, just a heartbeat away, pushing us constantly forward. When we take the time to observe, feel, and acknowledge it, we can begin to truly understand our own incredibly powerful potential.

Be the change – A meditation for the end of suffering

The Freedom Exercise

This week I am very excited to introduce you to my husband Britt Griscom. He will be spearheading the Monday Meditations for Mindfulness session. Take a deep breath and dive in!

In the ordinary man when a thought occurs the ego takes delivery of it as ‘my thought’ and gets involved… In the enlightened Sage, when a thought arises, witnessing happens and involvement with the thought does not take place. – Ramana Maharshi

One of the main causes of suffering for us is that we identify with our thoughts. Each thought hypnotizes us and persuades us that it is the only possible thought, when the truth is that it is just one possible thought among many that we could have. Our identification with our thoughts pulls us into one tunnel after another, and we live at the mercy of these thoughts. This is true of all the objects of our awareness, including sensations, emotions, desires, and memories. To be free, we need to recognize that the tunnel we find ourselves in is actually inside of us.

The exercise below is adapted from Roberto Assagioli’s Disidentification Exercise. The purpose of this exercise is to extract us from whatever tunnel we find ourselves in, and to position us in the meta-tunnel that includes all of the other tunnels.

Let’s begin.

As you go through your day, notice the sensations in your body. As you become aware of each one, ask yourself, “Am I inside of this sensation, or is it inside of me?”

The sensation is inside of you, right? You don’t need to identify with it. It is just a small part of you. You are much larger than any sensation.

Notice your emotions. As you become aware of each one, ask yourself, “Am I inside of this sensation, or is it inside of me?”

The emotion is inside of you, right? You don’t need to identify with it. It is just a small part of you. You are much larger than any emotion.

Notice your desires. As you become aware of each one, ask yourself, “Am I inside of this desire, or is it inside of me?”

The desire is inside of you, right? You don’t need to identify with it. It is just a small part of you. You are much larger than any desire.

Notice your memories. As you become aware of each one, ask yourself, “Am I inside of this memory, or is it inside of me?”

The memory is inside of you, right? You don’t need to identify with it. It is just a small part of you. You are much larger than any memory.

Notice your thoughts. As you become aware of each one, ask yourself, “Am I inside of this thought, or is it inside of me?”

The thought is inside of you, right? You don’t need to identify with it. It is just a small part of you. You are much larger than any thought.

If you are larger than any sensation, emotion, desire, memory, or thought, what are you? You are the field of awareness in which they arise. You do not need to identify with any of them. They are inside of you; you are not inside of them. They are part of you; you are not part of them. Each of them is a  tunnel, and you are the meta-tunnel that includes all of them.

As you go through your day, you’ll still get pulled in to one tunnel or another, but with practice you’ll be able to extract yourself more and more quickly, and you’ll spend more and more time in the pure light of Being.

Be the change – A meditation for the end of suffering

Be. Here. Now.

Anytime I feel overly entwined with my mind, work, or chores, I will literally burst out through my doors and breathe in the universe through my eyes, lungs and skin. When the vastness of life enters my awareness through all senses at once, I let go. I feel less fragmented, and expand my sense of self in life.

A walk. A swim. A jump. A sigh.

I love the outdoors, because nature (be it trees, rivers, or the sky) connects me to the unlimited universe. Because indoors for me means containment and focus, the outdoors is the expansion and play I need to nourish my spirit. It realigns my mind, and brings me back to a calm space of creativity and alertness.

For today’s meditation rush out of the doors of your home, office, or car and find yourself met by the vivacity of life – think fresh air, trees, desert, and sunlight. Drink it in, breathe it in, allow it to wash off all the things you’ve been carrying in and around you today.

 

Be. Here. Now.

 

Enjoy.

 

Photo Credit:
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Be the change – A meditation for the end of suffering

Giving until it hurts?

The needs of others can seem endless. We wake up fatigued, yet we soldier on; focusing all of our care and attention on the people & problems around us.

We do not have time for meditation or mindfulness, so we switch into autopilot to deal with our chores and projects. We prioritize family and work first, and leave ourselves for last… if we ever get that far down the list.

Everyone burns the candle at both ends from time to time.

We have all been taught that to give is selfless, and to place oneself before others is selfish. We associate unflagging selflessness with goodness, and are told offering up our energy and happiness to others is the path to grace.

I disagree.

I find the idea of selflessness very unsatisfactory, and reeking of martyrdom. Consider this idea: we can treat others well, and support those in need better when we take the time to nourish and satiate ourselves – in body and spirit.

The season of giving is about to begin, but you cannot forget to give to yourself. The holidays should be celebrated with laughter and cheer, instead of exhaustion! So for today, let’s find out what you really need, and help you make a commitment to giving to yourself.

Listen to today’s audio to check in with yourself emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually. This exercise will help you discover the truth about where you are on the map of your life.

Do you give to yourself enough? What are some ways you’ve brought yourself back to focus with your own self-care? I’d love to hear your ideas & experiences.