From Distractions

Pre-summer Energy-clearing Sale!

Garden

Hi, are you already galloping toward summertime? I know I am! Here in Chicago we’ve been enjoying weather bliss this week, with lots of sun and nature a’bloom. Hope you had a good Memorial Day weekend.  Now is a perfect time to honor your own inner-soldier.

It feels to some of us that 2017 has been one long battle to maintain inner peace and harmony in a world gone pretty darn crazy and unstable.  Violence, politics, chaos, the environment…hot issues that steal our sense of safety, grounding, connection, and peace.

I’m offering you a chance to quickly reconnect with the “home” within – that place where you can always find refuge, comfort, and connection.  Your Inner Essence at “home” is steady. It is not combative. It knows only one truth, and whether you call that truth Love, Peace, God, Spirit, Higher Self, or Consciousness, its nature is bliss, peace, and higher intelligence. Connecting back to “home” is reconnecting with the beautiful flow of life – of miracles and joy, your birthright.

Connection to our inner “home” can get lost in the shuffle of distractions, stress, other people’s energies, confusion, and collective fear. Even thinking too much, and certain foods and environmental toxins can affect our energy field!  We can become unable, or forget how to find our inner balance and peace. To do that, we need to clear out the energy of blocked and stagnant energies in our field, often caused by not fully processing our feelings or taking on the feelings of others.  The energy of unprocessed feelings and thoughts clog up our aura and chakras, and can lead to disease, pain, emotional triggers, lack of sleep, unhealthy coping mechanisms, and more.  Like a dirty house that needs cleaning, the solution to finding harmony, clarity, and order again is cleaning.  That messiness doesn’t walk away on its own!

So how about an offer you just can’t resist?  Spend 1/2 hour – or one hour with me over the phone, getting all the layers of your aura and chakras quickly cleared out.  You’ll feel lighter, clearer, more energetic, and more present. I’m throwing a sale:  Purchase and book by June 16 an energy clearing session done over the phone (that must be used by June 30) at 40% off the regular price. Good as a gift certificate too!

Half-hour energy clearing will be only $45 (a savings of $30)  or

One-hour energy clearing will be only $75  (a savings of $50)

As an extra gift, I’d like to offer you a Oneness Deeksha at the end of the session, if you’d like a beautiful transmission of sacred energy.

So start getting your summer glow on now. Contact me to make arrangements at paula@fromtheheartcenter.com or call (773)-791-8425.

One last thing, a gentle reminder that the Chicago Phenomenon & Gift weekend is coming here July 1 and 2.  There’s still time to register, but the discount rate for the hotel ends June 9…so don’t delay.  You can register for the weekend and get details on the hotel and pricing HERE.

 

 

New video about Oneness Awakening Course

photodune-6777212-paradigm-shift--xsCan you feel the shift we’re in? It’s dazzling at times and may also feel terrifying, depressing, or chaotic…and maybe all at the same time!

How to be? What to do? How to connect and anchor in these shifting times? If these questions are on your mind, please consider attending the upcoming Oneness Awakening Course at Infinity Foundation on Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 11 and 12 in Highland Park, IL (a suburb of Chicago). Out of town? Fly, drive, bus, or train it in – it will be a powerful boost of energy, insight, and growth for your awakening journey.  You’ll have the opportunity to go very deep in connecting with whatever is sacred to you (whether you call it Spirit, the Universe, Source, God, etc) – which is what makes it possible to hear clear guidance and manifest your heart’s desires. The course includes experiential, healing processes to break through areas of blockage in all relationships, as well as in financial, health, and career challenges. Plus, you will be initiated to give the very powerful energy transmission that is sweeping the globe – the Oneness Deeksha (also known as the Oneness Blessing).  Deeksha is known to quickly catalyze a lifting of vibration, an expansion of consciousness, an opening of the heart, an increase in self-awareness, and a quieting of the chattering mind.  You’ll be able to give Deeksha to yourself, loved ones. children, pets, and everyone your life touches! It can be given hands-on or by intention – you don’t need to be physically present with anyone to give it.

My co-facilitator of the course, Savita Laura Jachim, and I were interviewed on the Inner Quest Cable television show this week about Oneness, Awakening, and the Oneness Awakening Course.  Savita demonstrates how Deeksha is given in this video. You can watch the taped interview here

Click here to see the course flyer.

Don’t delay! register now with Infinity Foudation here.

Any questions? Send me an email: paula@fromtheheartcenter.com

Boo! Halloween Channeling

Halloween design with haunted house

Are you frightened my darling? On top of it being Halloween, a time when the veils between dimensions are most thin, the world seems to be spinning out of control. Along with rampant Cubs frenzy, my neighborhood is littered with skulls arising from still green lawns, bed-sheet ghosts floating above RIP gravestones, and other charmingly deathly décor. But none of these things are as scary to me as my desk stacked high with unfiled papers, reams of never-to-be read emails piling up in my mailbox, dishes in the sink, and the constant ding of texts claiming residence on my cell phone.

I know the speedy intensity of these times is both alarming to some and to others, incredibly exciting and stimulating. There seems to be a regular state of chaos flowing through torrents of unexpected events happening quite regularly most days: Airplane disasters, news-breaking crimes, record-setting storms, relentless Wiki-leaks and cyber-attacks, car, phone and toy recalls, and other endlessly alarming global events. There are also incredible stories of miraculous healings, poignant tales of inspiration and hope, scientific discoveries, and breakthroughs in medicine. There are also so many of us now talking about peace and Oneness, which is thrilling!

Through the media, we hear it all. Are you overwhelmed? Do you find the “unexpected” nerve-wracking or does it excite or energize you? I confess I’ve been in the overwhelmed camp lately.

I’ve been watching the World Series on television. I don’t usually watch t.v. much, but as a Chicagoan, I’ve been feeling anxious for days for the Cubs, and glued to the television each game night…and I’m not typically a sports fan! Still, I’ve been choosing to watch the games, rather than attend to the slew of other things in my home that need doing. There is something incredibly addictive and distracting about the anxiety-inducing World Series and the general chaos going on in the background (called LIFE). Even with an impressive meditation routine (if I must say so myself), and an equally diligent exercise and healthy-eating regimen, I am feeling both hyped up and tired at the same time.

This is coming along with the tsunami of presidential and political campaigns and upcoming election day – so nerve-wracking. Observing the constant tension in myself and those in my sphere fills me with compassion for humanity’s vulnerability; for the speed and quantity of stimulation is so ramped up that many of us seem over-run by it. Lateness, snappish driving reactions, missed appointments, forgotten tasks, menopausal moments, little mistakes, drinking too much, eating too much, not sleeping enough…feeling tired; This is what I observe in people around me.

Are we supposed to be getting used to this intensity as the new normal? Is there really no going back to feeling calm, well-rested, organized, and innocently optimistic?

The other day, I was discussing with someone whether the upcoming winter might be colder than normal, as has been predicted. The woman said, you can look to a horse’s winter coat as a sign – a thicker coat means a colder winter ahead. Evidently, horses are able to  instinctively grow more hair. That’s how connected these beautiful creatures are. We are animals; I wondered what my body might subtly be communicating or if I could even hear or see its message amidst the loud clatter of society’s group mind nowadays.

What I know with certainty is that my body is craving orange vegetables; for I had a dream about sweet potatoes the other night and butternut squash the next! That was bizarre and exciting to me because it’s an easy message to decipher: eat more sweet potatoes and squash, which I’ve been doing with pleasure. Either that or the Great Pumpkin has invaded my dream life!

Unfortunately my body is actually communicating very audibly, now that I think about it, when I’m around too many people and too much traffic – which is most of the time. It’s grumbling irritably, “I can’t stand all the noise! I want to be alone!” This particularly high sensitivity lately, despite the usually balancing routines and patterns, alarms me, for being a hermit doesn’t fit my image of living in Oneness. So I asked one of my Spirit Guides, the Cosmic one, for some higher guidance. This is my Guide’s response and I’d like to share it in the event that it might speak to you as well:

“Get real and come down from the clouds. This is your world now. Put one foot in front of the other and slug through this soup of stimulation. It’s a great way to discern what, and who, is yours. You will bounce off what is not meant to be yours – whether people or things – and by letting go of your previous self-image, you’ll end up with a new you, at least the authentic ‘you’ of this moment. Yes, life is speedy now and you can’t keep up with all the change. But open up to it anyway. You’ve lost control of your email and you’ve lost control of your time – in fact, perhaps you’ve lost your very mind. Good for you!

It’s time to go with the flow and don’t judge it. Relax into the roller-coaster ride because, yes, there is no going back. It’s time to let go. All you truly have right now is this unique moment, so enjoy it to the fullest. See your fear of unpredictability. See what falls away. Go easy on yourself. Your life can’t be perfectly organized and efficient if you say you want to live fully. Enjoy your anxiety, your imperfections, and the miracles too – watch it all with humor and appreciation. Don’t resist the flow of life. Oh yes, and breath deeply.”

So it’s that again – breath deeply. Why do I forget that so often? I tend to hold my breath when anxious. Thank you Cosmic Guide; I needed the reminder. We’re all having a human experience … and this is what being human is like now. It’s intense, exciting, scary, and often unpredictable. It’s especially miraculous too!

So pardon me Cleveland, but ‘hey Chicago, what do you say, Cubs are gonna win today!” I’m a sports fan and I didn’t even know it. If that can change, what other miraculous possibilities does the future hold, I wonder! Hello Great Pumpkin, bring it!

 

Radio Interviews about the Oneness Blessing!

Radio interviews now available for listening

I’m having a wonderful time being interviewed about Deeksha and my new book The Oneness Blessing. If you are curious and want to learn more about the Oneness Blessing phenomenon that’s sweeping the globe, I’m now posting these recordings on my website. Click here to listen to some of the interviews I did in the month of May.  Scroll down toward the bottom part of the page that pops up. More media to come!

 

New Year’s Resolution: Giving Up Resistance

I did a radical thing yesterday; I cancelled my cable television and Tivo service. I needed to do something to dramatically shake up the entrenched viewing habits I’d acquired while writing a book these past six months.

If you know me, you probably heard that I’ve been purposely living a pretty cave-like existence in order to meet a publisher’s strict deadline. I worked long hours, over many months, refraining from much socializing and consciously limiting distractions. I got into a work routine that typically allowed relaxing only late at night with just a few friends: primarily Oprah, the Channel 7 news teams, and the wildly entertaining cast of Dancing With The Stars. Thanks to Tivo, I was never at the mercy of prime-time television schedules, but I’d begun to forget what real, interactive fun feels like. I got lonely at times, but I also realized I can be quite solitary and be just fine…for a while.

Like most things in life, timing is always perfect, though not always comfortable. Thankfully, the book is terrific (as you’ll find out when you read it) and it will be heading toward the publisher’s office in just a few days. I’m almost feeling free again and can’t wait to get out of my apartment and spend time relaxing with real live people! My constantly hovering cats and I really got to know each other too well, if you can imagine what I mean!

I’ve come to the end of one adventure and the beginning of a whole new phase — right along with a brand new year. 2014 was a year of intense change and transformation for many of us. There’s so much global change going on now. We know that transformation is not necessarily easy or comfortable. It’s human to try to escape at times; most of us also try to fully experience the “what is” of the moment as best we can. But for many of us, we’re in a constant state of low-level resistance and denial of the unpleasant aspects of what’s going on. We’re really not experiencing the “what is” very much at all and much more like unconscious resistance “machines.”

When an experience or phase of life is completed, can you feel satisfied with the ending of what was and fully let it go? Or do you resist endings too? Many of us struggle with that. Do you hang on to the past, re-living it in your mind or secretly hoping for a different outcome? All of these mental acrobatics prevent us humans from simply being with “what is.” If we just let go of our resistance to reality, we can much more comfortably embrace the exciting unknown of what is now. When we stop resisting, we’re in the flow, which is a natural state of joy, lightness, and inner freedom.

I’m finding that as I’m going through transformational experiences, it’s helpful to consciously intend to open to change. Change can feel downright scary. Releasing habits, friendships, jobs, or old ways of being can cause ripples of fear and resistance to change. The only solution is to face our fear head-on. That fear lives deep within each of us, among many other buried emotions, though they’re all often held unconsciously.

If you look within, you’ll see feelings such as fear, anger, sadness, and frustration living in your body as muscular tightness and pain, shallow breathing, inner conflict, headaches, stomach aches, fatigue, judgment, depression, apathy, or the desire to distract or numb oneself with substances or activities (just as I did with television watching for a while.) All of the things we do may temporarily help us cope with the uncomfortable feelings….until they just don’t work anymore. We can run from fully experiencing our feelings, but we can’t hide forever.

The question is, can we consciously and courageously let buried feelings express and move through us? Yes! When we feel our feelings fully, they energetically move, lift, and leave us light and unburdened. With the release of energy blockages due to stuffed feelings, comes clarity. We come to see that change is the absolute, fundamental nature of all life and ultimately, resistance is not only futile, but quite destructive to health and happiness.

Experiencing the emotions brought on by change can free us. We can observe our life and choose a new direction when we’re ready (or at least a little willing) to let go of what was. We can experience fear and move through it. We are not our fear.

Who are we then? After or during a period of intense change, it pays to stop and just entertain that question for a while. It’s good to pause, and allow the essential you to breathe in the stillness; to let go of resistance and thus allow life to flow through you. Don’t try to force an answer or slap on a pretty bow. Just be with what’s there. Become aware of resistance. You might find that layers of unpleasant feelings have been stuffed down, needing to be experienced and released.

We don’t need a big “dark night of the soul” to feel the fear of not being sure of who we are anymore, where we’re going, or what our purpose is, – unsettled feelings are so often lurking just below the surface of consciousness in times of heightened change, even good change. We can just hang out with our evolving beingness (as in meditation) and we’ll experience all the “gook”we try hard not to see. Looking inward, breathing deeply, experiencing what’s there and relaxing into it … that’s all we need do to keep ourselves flowing.

It’s natural to possibly feel frightened and perhaps overwhelmed at times with the vulnerability of the undefined, unpredictable, and basically empty/full nature of the Self. That vulnerability is probably why the mind resists feeling so much. That’s why our egos have us trying so hard to be perfect and to feel in control. That’s a good reason to meditate or get some coaching, healing, or help – to move through the machinations of the fearful, controlling, distorting mind that prevents inner peace.

I was in an uneasy place these past few weeks, as the writing of the book was winding down. Like a baby in the womb, the book had grown within my care, and then suddenly passed through me, fully birthed, and leaving this body to the essential stillness that was there all along. I evidently felt an unconscious loss and tried to avoid feeling that for a while….I’m human. But running from feelings never works (how well I know that!) and I asked my Divine for help when I became aware that something was off kilter.

Besides the guidance to shut down t.v., I was Divinely reminded of a beautiful poem by Mary Oliver that movingly speaks to letting go, to self-acceptance, to knowing our natural connection to all life – and to allowing life to live through us, as it always does. The poem is called “Wild Geese” and begins like this:

“You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.”

You might want to “google” the whole poem; I find it a gentle, healing experience to read it. Like much beloved art, poetry speaks to my heart, reminding me of what I already know. I love that phrase she uses, “let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.” It’s a gorgeous message to simply allow your primal, instinctual and authentic Self to just shine. It knows what to do. It knows what it loves and needs. It connects you to all life; it allows life to live through you. There’s nothing to figure out with the mind. In fact, we can’t figure out this mysterious thing called life. We are simply one with it and can experience it through the primal senses. We can trust that everything is perfectly moving us toward love and goodness...we can relax, let go, and allow something greater than our minds run the show. So will you join me in giving up resistance for 2015?

I wish for you a sense of safety, love and goodness, no matter what is expressing in your life right now. May you know you don’t have to be perfect to be loved. May your holidays and every day of the year be filled with the blessings of grace. May your consciousness transform your life. May you allow life to flow through you as love.

COURAGE!

As expressed in A Course Of Miracles, the only thing that’s real is love.  The rest, basically, is fear. The emotional roller coaster we ride daily amounts to reactions to the illusions we project onto life, which are based on the skewed perceptions of our survival-obsessed minds.  Given that most of us get so bogged down in the fearful thoughts and feelings generated by our judgmental minds, how can we wade through the thick muck of fear and egocentricity to get to the love part?

In my own travels along the spiritual path, I recently hit a hugely dark and ominous cavern, smack dab in the middle of a steep and narrow trail to happiness.  When I first encountered it, I shuddered in fear and repulsion.  I realized that it had been there for decades, or maybe centuries, but I wasn’t ready to see it before.

Now, there would be no way to avoid it if I wanted to claim my natural state of authentic joy.  After years of diligently slugging along the winding road of transformation, Divine Grace brought me here, and despite the challenge of staring down the darkness inside, I knew this opportunity was a huge gift.  

The gift came along with the possibility of actually achieving a long-held dream.  This is how it happens, sometimes.  We may be on the brink of getting something we long for, or maybe we’re standing right in it, but we need to grow in order to fully receive it.  Maybe our heart needs to be cranked open a little further so we can hold the big bundle of happiness that the universe is offering.

If left unchallenged, our minds may find a way to sabotage our happiness. The mind is typically hell-bent on clinging to it’s comfortable level of victimization.  Don’t underestimate the power of the mind to create problems, illnesses, miscommunications, addictions, and other obstacles to happiness!

So after staring into this black hole for a few weeks (nervously dancing around its edges, and then retreating), and after finally accepting that there was no means to get around it, I prayed deeply to the Divine for the courage to move through it.  I sucked in some air, prepared to dive head-first, and walked to its edge.

Looking in, my stomach lurched.  I could feel terror and loneliness emanating from its smoky epicenter.  I prayed for courage and then jumped in.  I felt the darkness rise up into my throat and I stayed with it the sensation of being choked.  To my relief, the discomfort of some unconscious childhood or past-life wounding moved through me in a matter of minutes.  And then there was nothing left but peace.

Who knows what it was, but I can tell you it was really primal.  I’m happy to report that my Divine came through for me, of course, and that particular black hole evaporated like the desert illusion it was.  There may be more black holes to traverse, but having vanquished this one, I’m celebrating now.

And that’s how it goes when we need to look at the unconscious, ancient terror of being alone, separate from Source, unloved, and unlovable – which the collective mind tries, with all its might, to suppress.  

The “what is” of life is really love, but to live in it, we have to breathe our way, and  feel our way, through the illusions.  We need to embrace the trapped emotions in our bodies.  We need Grace to do that, so I urge you to call on your Divine for help with this. 

I use my tools of prayer, meditation, shamanic journeying, and, especially because it is a fast shortcut, Oneness Blessings,  and the teachings of Oneness, to move closer and through inner darkness.  I find the courage to transform so that I can be happy, so I can lighten the world with radiance, and because there is really no other way to make this world heaven on earth.  

Peace and love,

Paula

2014 Predictions!

Get ready, my dear, because I have a feeling this year is going to knock your socks off.  I sense something really great is emerging. It may be nothing short of a brand new paradigm, in which the old rules and habits are falling away and giving rise to whole new ways of being!

There is so much rapid change and information happening now, that I can barely handle my highly skillful multi-tasking.  Some days, it’s all I can do to feed myself, meditate, pay the bills on time, and get some work done.  Feeling overwhelmed, throwing caution to the wind, letting go, losing track of time, taking leaps of faith, feeling victorious at times, feeling embarrassed at times, re-grouping, reassessing…this has been the intense “stuff” of life in 2013.

I believe that 2014 is delivering us into a more clarified and  buoyant consciousness — wiser, and in some camps, a lot more willing to allow a power greater than ourselves to take the reigns.  As a global community, we might just be soon admitting that life is completely uncontrollable.  Dare I use the word “surrender?”  Might I say that spiritual surrender is rising like the long-awaited Phoenix?

I know a lot of you don’t care for that word, surrender. Surrender implies, for some, defeat.  But I deny that interpretation and, instead, embrace the notion that surrender is the release of the illusion that my mind can logically control the chaos that is life.

Surrender is the letting go of believing I am solely in charge of my success or failure — or that there is even such things as success or failure.  Surrender is seeing that I am not my fabulous mind.  In truth, I exist as a being who is awash in judgments, outmoded concepts, unexamined habits, automatic assumptions, clinging to the past, fantasizing about the future — the everyday fruit of my over-thinking mind.   Peel all this thinking back, and what you have is the pure consciousness that animates this body.

In meditation, I’ve come to clearly witness that my mind isn’t trustworthy.  My mind is a wild animal that is constantly busy distracting itself from the present moment, trying to control and make sense of this unpredictable world.  But in back of my mind, there is a presence, THE Presence, which is eternally good, loving, constant, and true.   I experience it as every day magic, synchronicities, blessings, love, joy, and the present moment.

This appears to be a year that the Presence is becoming clearer and clearer.  It’s revealing Itself. The clouds are parting, the false beliefs lifting, and the long-predicted Phoenix is starting to  arise.  Rebirth! I can feel the huge bird rattling its chains in restless anticipation.

We may just watch as our personal chaos starts repositioning, moving into new manifestations of inner peace and love.  Our precious life may not look like we want it to look, but when all is said and done, we might just find it suits us, after all.

For me, it’s been a long period of being in my cave — hope you didn’t feel neglected by my lack of communication, but I have needed to flounder about in non-doingness for quite a while.  Just like that proverbial fish out of water, I’ve been trying to get my land bearings while the tides were churning up clouds of foam all around me.

If truth be told, it’s been pretty darn uncomfortable.  Cast from the sea of my illusions, I’ve been sitting (meditating tons) and observing the dark and the light reverberate through me, shaking out the old ways, burning up the fantasies, rattling the ghosts of past relationships, and reviewing the previous choices that chose through me.

When a dear friend kindly lent me Thomas Moore’s book, Dark Nights Of The Soul, I realized that  my inner darkness and turmoil was more transparent than I thought.   Thus, all the more reason to fully give myself over to it!  So here it is, New Year’s Eve, and my big plans tonight are to happily burrow deeper into my cave.   What’s different today, however (and thankfully has been mounting since the Winter Solstice’s return of light),  is that joy is afoot.  Hope is present.  Snow is falling, and home never felt cozier.  Gratitude is here and I’m down on my knees appreciating it’s sweet face.

So, for all my sisters and brothers who are “caving” it tonight, and all the others who are partying in the new year, I send my blessings.   I pray that 2014 brings divine order to your chaos and the world’s vast and perfect imperfection.   I pray we all come through our suffering and find comfort and freedom in awakening to love’s magic, power, and eternal truth.

I predict more change ahead and no where to go but deeper and more fully into it.   This is what we signed on for when we incarnated onto to this baffling planet.  Let’s find the peace and joy in the midst of all this experience.  It’s there, so hang in and keep showing up.

Meeting the Divine In Meditation

Depending on the tradition, there are a number of ways to practice mindfulness meditation.    One style of mindfulness meditation that I like asks us to keep our attention on our nostrils, the place where breath flows in and out.   In a previous post, I outlined the simple steps for doing this type of meditation.

Why focus on the nostrils?  One of the reasons is because that is the place where we can be very fully present to the moment, for life requires breath, and to be aware of breathing in and out is to be aware of life occurring right here, right now.

The place where the breath goes in and out of our bodies, at the nostrils, is so taken for granted, but what a sacred spot that is!   Of course, our entire body is a sacred and mysterious temple, but this one little spot is where we can consciously intersect with the present moment, bridging the gap between what is seen and what is unseen, the manifest (our bodies) and the un-manifest (the Divine).

When we remain steadfast in our determination to focus on the breath at the nostrils, the practice becomes like a “home base.”  Each time our concentration is led astray by the wild thoughts constantly generated by the mind, we can gently return our concentration “home,” back to the infinite harbor of the present moment.

For it is in the present moment that we experience freedom.  It is in the present moment where we meet the What Is.  It is in the What Is that we come to know the divine nature of our consciousness.

What an adventure to hang out with the What Is!  In the space of your meditation practice, it is a quietly thrilling ride that is unique each and every time you sit down to meditate.   Its nature, while eternal, is also infinitely unfolding, infinitely creative.  It is your consciousness.  It is the One consciousness.  It is alive.  It is bliss.

Do some of you think meditation is boring?  Stay with the practice!  It is a practice that develops and deepens with repeated use.  I recommend creating a new habit of meditation.  Choose a regular time of the day to do it.  Start with as little as 10 minutes and expand from there.  Set a timer, focus on your breathing at the nostrils, and allow whatever happens to happen.  Let go of judgment.  Be curious, and as you notice your focus straying, gather up those wild and random thoughts and bring them home.

 

One more suggestion:  Perhaps begin your meditation session with a prayer or intention.  Call on a power greater than yourself to meet up with you in your breath and ask It to reveal Itself to you.  Then let go and allow the What Is to be present.

   

I would love to hear your thoughts or questions if you care to share them here.  Our sharing and questions help us all to learn from one another.

Wishing you great adventures in consciousness.  By the way, you’ve probably heard that the “veils” between dimensions are thin around the time of Halloween.  So take advantage and be a fearless explorer of your own inner dimensions.  Inner worlds yet unseen await!

Love,

Paula

 

 

Have a meditation break!

With all the research out now about the huge physical, mental, emotional and spiritual benefits from meditation, are you doing it every day? Meditation relieves stress, clarifies your thinking, changes your brain, helps to deal with pain, possibly lowers blood pressure, and can deeply impact your spiritual development.

I generally do some form of meditation once or twice a  day.  Here’s a very easy form of mindfulness meditation* that can be done, anytime, anywhere, even at your desk in the midst of a busy work day (one of the best times to take a short meditation break!).  No need for incense or special music:

 

 

  1. Sit up straight in your chair, with your feet flat on the floor and your hands resting comfortably in your lap. Close your eyes.
  2. Focus on your breathing, taking slow, deep breaths, and exhaling fully. Place your attention right at the tip of your nose, at your nostrils, where the air comes in and goes out.
  3. As you focus on your breathing, count each inhale and each exhale, counting from 1 to 10, and then from 10 to 1. In other words, first inhale is “1”, exhale is “2,” next inhale in is “3,” exhale is “4”, and so on, up to “10.” Then count inhales and exhales in reverse, from 10 to 1.*
  4. Repeat step 3, and watch your breaths begin to become softer, and seem to merge.
  5. Stop counting after two rounds, but continue gently breathing, noticing your belly and chest rising and falling with each breath.
  6. If your mind becomes distracted, as it will, just notice that you’ve become distracted and return to focusing on your breath.  This is what the mind does – it is unruly and will take us into the past, the future, or into a daydream.  With practice, you will train this wild beast!
  7. Keep focusing on your breathing in this way for 5 or 10 minutes, or as long a time as you have. See if you can work it up to 20 – 30 minutes every day.
  8. Enjoy the refreshing calmness you feel after meditating!  You may notice how your life begins to flow easier, how you get to know yourself much better and have spontaneous insights, and how your compassion for the struggles of others begin to grow!

* Meditation counting technique taken from the wonderful book Mindfulness in Plain English by Bhante Gunaratana.

 

 

cruel month

Once in a while, my English literature bachelors degree rears its mighty head, and I’ll think of a line from the poetry I love so much. What’s coming up for me now is a few lines from T.S. Elliot’s The Waste Land. He wrote in 1919:

“April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.”...

Yes, the month of April is once again upon us, a bittersweet month for its one last chance to both let go of what is passed and dead, and, at the same time, welcome the renewed stirrings of our heart’s desires.   The dead growth of winter becomes washed clean by rains of rebirth — but maybe not without some pain and grieving for what was.

It’s been about 6 weeks since my shift in consciousness, and the awareness of “reality” just keeps getting stronger and stronger. No longer bound by the illusions of who I thought I was, instead, there is mainly the reality of what exists right now. Any self-delusion covering up defensiveness and projection, any excuses or judgments masquerading as victimization and projection – the gauzy layers of these illusions are getting peeled back. And as I partake in reality as never before, my heart both breaks and bursts with the fullness of this thing called life.

Seeing the choices made in previous years, the suffering that ensued, the helplessness over those choices, and yet, the Divine Hand in it all – that is the stuff of awakening and the mysterious paradox of the birth/death cycle that holds us tenderly in its grip while we have our human experience.

Like the month of April, this seeing of the paradoxes of reality is both cruel and sweet. Ultimately, the evolution of consciousness promises a synthesis of the grand illusion of duality – a rebirth, free of illusions, in which we are living in a state of bliss with an experience of Oneness. With grace, we experience the illusions of duality dying and we surrender to the letting go process that delivers us into joy.

So, letting go in order to be reborn….a timeless theme of religion, literature, nature, life.  Since I’ve been back from India, I’ve been sharing my story of embracing helplessness and the necessity of surrender in order to receive the grace of the Divine. A number of people have expressed their fear about this process…. inspiring a reminder for all of us that a crucial step in the shift from fear to surrender is cultivating faith and trust.   Without faith and trust, our minds fear we will be eaten alive by pain. Our minds feel responsible for protecting us from pain – that’s the job of the mind and it works very hard at this task.

But how do you make the leap to faith and trust when you are caught in the grip of the mind, that lifeless terrain of fear? How do the lilacs get bred from the dead land in which they grow?

The answer is: The sun shines, the earth rotates, the moon and stars revolve, and weather cycles change.   Our mind can’t coerce the shift of faith to happen even as we can’t control the shining of the sun. Like the natural laws of astronomy, physics and math, faith happens naturally, but by a higher power than our mind. If you willingly open your eyes to see it, if you become conscious of a greater truth at play, then you set the stage for the natural event of grace to swoop in and transform your perceptions from fear to faith.

By observing and experiencing the phenomenon of grace in your life, the trust happens and the faith grows.   So, it’s merely about showing up and seeing what there is to see and feeling what there is to feel..

So you may be wondering, what does “showing up” involve? I can only speak from my own experience of showing up, and for me, it involves a couple of things:

One thing I’ve learned to do is to pay attention to my pain with the intention of fully experiencing it, fully seeing what it is.   By not running from the pain, by embracing its physical and emotional experience so I can know it consciously, it inevitably leads to transcendence from its limiting grip.

Pain has driven me to seek awakening. Pain has motivated me to find better ways to relate to loved ones. Pain has led me to stop projecting my judgments and blame on others and to see the truth of my own crazy beliefs.   Pain has been the number one reason my Divine has answered my calls of help. Pain is my Divine’s magical seed, implanted in me so that I can spend a lifetime searching for the bliss my heart desires.

If I were to have kept running from pain using the various coping mechanisms I have explored at various times (smoking, drinking, over-eating, over-working, blaming, resisting, hiding, lying to myself, trying to fix others, etc.), I would have still hit a bottom at some point and would have had to ultimately experience surrender.   In truth, I’ve hit numerous bottoms and I’ve learned, and continue to learn, to surrender over and over again.

The other thing I’ve done to “show up” is to seek conscious contact with my Divine. I’ve spent years doing shamanic journeying to connect with the Divine, years meditating, praying, serving, energetically clearing, and experiencing the Divine through all its beautiful forms, such as art, music, nature, poetry, love, sex, and delicious food!. For whatever karmic reasons, conscious connection with the Divine is a driving force in my life, that has brought tremendous joy and spiritual growth.

I want the bliss so badly. Even awakened, the journey of Oneness continues.   The longer the journey, the even more willing I become to leap into the transmuting fire of consciousness in order to experience the freedom of bliss – the rebirth into Oneness.

May your April be filled with the sweetness of rebirth. May your lilacs bloom with the waters of consciousness and faith! May you find your freedom in all the glorious, mysterious, complex and fantastic manifestations of the Divine!

 

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