Saturday, February 17, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-17-18

"Enveloped in Your Light, 
may I be a beacon
to those in search of Light. 
Sheltered in Your Peace, 
may I offer shelter
to those in need of peace. 
Embraced by Your Presence, 
so may I be present to others." 

-- Rabbi Rami Shapiro 

[Classic post from 11-22-16]

I would like to share just a bit of my day yesterday when I was out doing errands. I needed just a few things, so I stopped at the grocery store. The parking lot was almost full, and still, I found a spot near the door. I went in, pulled out a cart and was a bit surprised how many people were in there. It was actually kind of crowded, so I thought, well, this is interesting, and it must be people getting ready for Thanksgiving.

I have a smile on my face and I am having a good time being courteous to cart traffic, looking people in the eye and smiling at them. Almost everyone in there had such a serious look on their face. This made me smile all the more. To be so serious looked out of place. A few who recognized that I was looking at them smiling, chose to accept some of that love and smiled back, if even for a few moments.

I wasn't trying to change them. I was enjoying watching them. I wasn't smiling at them so that they would smile back, I was appreciating each one, as each was unique. It was fun for me, and it was also pleasing when one would return the smile.

I got what I needed, check out was busy yet timely, and I got in my truck to go home. As I pulled out into traffic there was enough space in front of me that I had the opportunity to look up. We've had a bit of rain and cloudiness for the last few days, and today was mostly sunny, but in the afternoon, there were some clouds coming through the area.

As I looked up, in one moment I took in a cloud formation in front of me that the setting sun's light hit just so that it was like the grandest painting you could imagine. Parts of the cloud formation were shaded and part was brilliantly lit up, and it took my breath away. It's funny how clouds do that quite often to me these days.

My day, although very good, instantly went from a seven to a ten. And, it was only a moment because I had to watch the traffic in front of me. As I drove, I wanted more, but it wasn't the same. It was good, but nowhere near the spectacular sight, I saw just moments ago.

Then I thought, isn't that fascinating! It is amazing how much power, joy, and depth of experience I can notice in but one single moment. It caused me to think of so many things that I experience and how when something feels really special in some way that I want to experience it longer, wanting it to last, to savor it. Sometimes I can and do, because, why not? But, what I realized during this experience is that I don't need to. Yes, I want to, I would love to extend that joy, but even only to touch it for a moment is a full experience. I had never realized that fullness before. And as I contemplated all of that, I was in pure joy.

I experience these events throughout my day now. Whether I am glancing at the squirrel in my courtyard chewing on a succulent, birds feasting, the sun setting, the sun rising, the rain--it pretty much doesn't matter what I see anymore--I see beauty, magnificence, and I'm enchanted with it all. It makes me feel like I have arrived at this place where I want to savor it all, even if many are but moments in time.

"Every Natural Object Is A Conductor Of Divinity." -- John Muir 

Spread Some Joy Today--by finding things to appreciate that are all around you every moment of every day. Delight in them or not, but joy is in the delight.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-16-18

"There is such a thing 
as a life without fear." 

-- Michael A. Singer 

[Classic post from 10-31-16]

Perhaps my teacher, Tony Robbins, was the one who opened my mind on the idea of choosing a different and more helpful and even healthy perspective rather than accepting fear, despair, and the practicing of denial. He used a few simple questions to do this. Here's two of them:

1. What is great about this problem? 
2. If there could be something great about this problem, what might they be? 

Number two is after the typical denial that there isn't anything great about the problem. He calls these Problem Solving Questions, and they are on page 201 of his great book, Awaken the Giant Within. The book was published in 1991 and ever since reading it way back when and I am faced with a situation that is commonly responded to with pity, or feeling sorry for myself, or fear, I would remember that I don't have to follow the norm of how the majority might respond to one of these events. No, I can choose to respond differently. I cannot express with enough enthusiasm how empowering this has been for me. 

Death is the biggest fear in life for most everyone, and when someone close to you dies, you're supposed to mourn and feel sadness, cry, seek the sympathy of close friends, and more. That's what we're taught; albeit, mostly by copying what we see of our parents or on TV, etc. But, there are so many other choices than this.

The same is true for any major life event, such as a diagnosis of a major disease, or so-called incurable disease. As the one getting this news, we could choose the typical responses we've seen on TV or in our family, or we could choose something else entirely. There is no requirement to be sad. Equally, there is no requirement to be happy. We get to choose how we will feel in any situation. We can go with what we've learned, or go on auto-pilot with the norm, or we can begin a celebration instead.

Michael A. Singer said it this way: "The natural ups and downs of life can either generate personal growth or create personal fears. Which of these dominates is completely dependent upon how we view change. Change can be viewed as either exciting or frightening, but regardless of how we view it, we must all face the fact that change is the very nature of life." 

The more I learn about life, the more fascinated I become. It seems to me that there are things I can control, and things that I cannot, but there is one thing I can always control, and that is my perspective, how I view an event, situation, person, or thing. In this way, my feelings become a guide to know what my thoughts are meaning to me.

We all get to choose our perspective. Choosing the norm is fine. Being sad is fine. Being upset is fine. It is all fine. As well, choosing to think and feel different than the norm is fine too. They are all real. And, the best part of that reality is that we all get to choose as we will.

One of the best questions that I think we could ask is this: If I were given six months to live, how would I choose to think and feel about this? What would I choose to do? How would I live the rest of my life?

What if I got excited? What if this caused me to realize what is really important in my life? What if what I've been doing was not nearly so important as I thought? What if I changed? When you have six months to live, would you spend that time in fear and despair? Wouldn't it be so much better to get excited?

Sometimes Getting Excited, IS The Cure. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by falling in love with yourself and your life. What a glorious day that will be!

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-15-18

"Who are you? 
Who, who. . . Who, who?" 

-- Pete Townshend 

[Classic post from 10-30-16]

After almost 40 years now, I still love the chorus of that song, Who Are You? by The Who, released in 1978. Plus, it is among the greatest questions we could ever ask of ourselves and others. Who Am I? Who Are You?

Most people would answer the question by stating something about themselves, such as, their name, what they do for a living, something they have done to make a name for themselves, and more. But, none of that would be them. We are all so far beyond all of that trivia. In truth, we simply are.

I want to share an insight of the many insights I gleaned from Michael A. Singer's powerful book, The Untethered Soul. In this book, he gets to the simple depth of answering who am I, and in a very short book, explains so much about understanding ourselves, and aims to help encourage a much more satisfying journey for each of us in our lives.

To simplify who we are after we let go of all the layers of labels we have for ourselves, he says, "Eventually you will get to a point within yourself where you realize that you, the experiencer, have a certain quality. And that quality is awareness, consciousness, an intuitive sense of existence. You know that you're in there. You don't have to think about it; you just know." 

And here's the part that I want most to share this morning. He says:

"To make this more experiential, let's try a consciousness experiment. Notice that with a single glance at a room, or out a window, you instantaneously see the full detail of everything that's in front of you. You are effortlessly aware of all the objects that are within the scope of your vision, both near and far away. Without moving your head or eyes, you perceive all the intricate detail of what you immediately see. Look at all the colors, the variations of light, the grain of wood furniture, the architecture of buildings, and the variations of bark and leaves on trees. Notice that you take all this in at once, without having to think about it. No thoughts are necessary; you just see it. Now try to use thoughts to isolate, label, and describe all the intricate detail of what you see. How long would it take your mental voice to describe all that detail to you, versus the instantaneous snapshot of consciousness just seeing? When you just look without creating thoughts, your consciousness is effortlessly aware of, and fully comprehends, all that it sees."  

I was fascinated with this paragraph--fascinated because it resonated within me. Right after I read that, and ever since I read it, I often just look and pay attention to see, hear, feel, smell, and yes, even taste all that I am aware of in that moment, or as I string moments together into larger blocks of time. It is a glorious, mind-opening sense of awareness that is bordering on magical.

It doesn't matter if I am in or near nature, or I am in my truck, or at an event, or our doing errands, or sitting here typing. There is so much around me wherever I am, and now I notice it all without thinking about it or trying to explain it. It simply is. Certain things get more of my awareness or attention, but even without turning my head, moving my eyes, I sense this grand awareness of being.

Try it for yourself. Look without thinking and sense the depth of your own awareness of all the intricate detail all around you. I'll bet that you too will sense it all in that moment without needing to describe anything. It just is. I'll also bet that this will change the way you look at things, and especially expand your wonder and delight, as it absolutely has for me.

"Behind It All, There You Are." -- Michael A. Singer 

Spread Some Joy Today--by allowing your awareness to help you find joy where you only saw issues and problems before.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-14-18

"Words are but the vague shadows
of the volumes we mean. 
Little audible links, they are, 
chaining together 
great inaudible feelings 
and purposes." 

-- Theodore Dreiser 

[Classic post from 10-28-16]

Long ago, I read that you can count your intimate friends, those with whom you can speak your heart without fear of embarrassment or other concerns, on just one hand. I now understand this more completely.

I attended an annual event yesterday where I know a lot of the people there, and many I have also worked with, and some are active clients in my business.

I have almost always been a quiet type of person, uncomfortable in social situations. I used to see these gatherings as a sort of competitive environment of who's doing well, growing, becoming more, and who is not, who is popular with the many and who is not and so on.

I can make small speak and listen to small talk, and yet it satisfies me not a bit. So, when I am not being engaged, I've done something new. I look at each person in the room and feel love for them. Some of them I hug and feel deep love for, and others I may only have just met, or didn't even get around to meeting them, and I love them already.

If you've been reading any of these Daily Inspirations for a while, you know that this idea has been coming to me and in practice for quite some time, but when you realize that you are actually doing it without even thinking about practicing it, well, this is a whole new feeling, and yesterday, this feeling came alive in me.

I think the change within me that has caused all of this to come to pass in all its glory to me is that of those that I can count on one hand, the number one is my inner sense of connection with God, or All-That-Is, or the Universe. From this one connection which I find any time I desire by simply relaxing, letting go of resistance, dropping the rope, I feel somehow connected to all, each in their different bodysuits, and manners. It is a strangely mystical and absolutely delightful feeling.

That feeling goes beyond being intimate with anyone, sharing inner feelings or secrets, to the point that there is no need for any of that because that is at a somewhat lower level.

I love Theodore Dreiser's quote above because it speaks to me of how I used to feel at these kinds of events, seeing people once a year, or with even more space in between sightings. And, even though mostly those inaudible feelings and purposes go typically unexpressed, I find a way to express some of those feelings and thoughts with one or two or three regardless. But, even that doesn't really matter because they already knew.

There Is A Far Deeper Connection With Each Other In All Of Us. Relax In Its Glory. 

Spread Some Joy Today--OK. Let's call today, Joy Day 1. Tomorrow will be Joy Day 2. String a few more of those together and you've got a Joy Month, then a Joy Year, then a Joyous Life.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-13-18

"Example is not the main thing
in influencing others. 
It is the only thing." 

-- Albert Schweitzer 

[Classic post from 10-29-16]

Perhaps you've had an experience as I have recently where a place you've been doing business with for quite some time has a manager change, and then the entire feel of the place is off from what it was. It is said that as goes the leader, so goes the pack.

I go to my bank at least ten times per month and sometimes more. It is a small branch of a manager and typically three tellers. Earlier this year the branch manager moved to another location and one of the tellers was groomed for that position and it was given them. He was a very happy man, always smiling or laughing, had great banter, had a unique way about him and it seemed that the whole place was in that flow with him. He was also a wandering leader in that he was not holed up in his office most of the time.

I was happy for the person who moved up, and at first, there wasn't much of a change, but then it came to feel quite different.

Because I am a happy man, I bring that into the bank with me. I aim to be bright, cheery and have an enthusiastic, yet calm manner. One of the tellers used to be very light and happy and now has a busy, serious look. I used to love to go to her window, but now she's always busy and I have to go to the others. They are all great, so that is fine.

Yesterday, my ego was saying to me, "did I say or do something to offend her? Her demeanor has changed significantly." So I let it rant just a little. I wondered if I should say something to the new manager or the old manager even. I wondered for the first time, what they might be saying or thinking about me after I left. Then I quickly put my ego back in his cell where he belongs and asked, "what is my best role here?"

Here's what came of that. My role is to be the best authentic me that I can be. My role is to be happy. My role is to send love to all of them, lifting them up in my mind. That's pretty much it. Simple. 

Here's why: First, it is none of my business what anyone else thinks or says about me. I cannot control that, and if I ever tried, it would only mess it up. I have no power there. Second, I can't control how anyone else acts, or how they do their job, or how they choose to respond to the demands of their job, or how they choose to feel. I have no power there. 

Where I do have power is here: I can only control myself. I can only control my own thinking. I can only control my own actions. I can only control my demeanor. I alone choose how I will feel in any situation. 

So what's my best role? To be me. To love. Without conditions. To not try to change others for my benefit. To keep my ego on a short leash and not let him rule because he is a chaotic leader. Love is a better leader. I learned this long ago being a manager since I was twenty-five. Love is the best leader. It never fails.

We Can Be So Much More Valuable By Focusing On The Power We Do Have Rather Than The Power We Don't Have. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by letting love be your leader.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-12-18

"Seemingly all of a sudden 
I realized that I had the capacity 
to love every person and thing." 

-- Albert K. Strong 

[Classic post from 10-26-16]

More practical Spirituality, which I now realize is what I've been sharing all along.

Compassion. It's a word that is bandied about with ease. And my understanding of the word is different than the definition in the dictionary that I just read: "a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering." That's like saying, "I feel sorry for you and your affliction(s), here's my ten-step method for curing your ills and releasing your suffering." Silly.

Compassion to me is a grand word, filled with practical and powerful selfless love without any agenda on repair. What a radical difference.

I have to share this beautiful and insightful quote by one of my favorite old "new age" thinkers, Albert Einstein.

"A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty." 

I take issue with only one short phrase: "Our task must be to. . ." There really aren't any rules, and any observant person of the world around us can see that not so many are accepting this task, regardless of the stature of the person suggesting it. No, it's not a must. It's a potential choice. I say potential because we can choose yes and we can choose to ignore it completely.

I have been on this journey of learning to make use of what Abraham, Esther Hicks calls the Art of Allowing. This art or activity is the essence of compassion to me. As I allow others to be what they choose for themselves, and as I don't insist that they be a certain way on my behalf, I am loving them without condition. There is no better way to define the Art of Allowing to me. 

I've been practicing for a long time, but it is only in the most recent years that I have taken off the training wheels so to speak. In releasing myself to practice my own version of compassion in the Art of Allowing, and in expressing and feeling unconditional love, I have come so much closer to the person I truly want to be inside and out.

I'm not 100%. Even so-called Saints have an ego that sometimes pretends to influence. There is no end to the journey as in reaching the destination, but there is greater and greater allowing, becoming, expanding. I would even say that in just the last year, there has been a substantial expansion in me. It is ongoing, and I am in love with the process.

So where's the practicality in this? Let's say you're a salesperson, and do you suppose there would be value in loving your prospect that is in front of you, allowing them to be who they are as you do for yourself? As you are choosing love, the other cannot help but feel it in some way. This helps bring you together in purpose as co-creators of the event called the sale. I know a lot of salespeople look at the transaction with the prospect as overcoming objections, using manipulative words and phrases, with self-focused motives.

Let's say you work on a team, and something comes up that isn't your job and yet you have the opportunity to serve the team or not. What does love do? It serves. Easy choice from a certain perspective. These are just a couple of ways your Spirituality can be made practical.

What about homeless people? Criminals? Terrorists? Heads of State? The neighbor who refuses to take care of his lawn? The potholes in the streets? The flat tire you notice as you're in a hurry to get to an appointment? The guy driving slow in front of you? Friday afternoon traffic? A mistake on your paycheck? A leaky roof? A power outage? Can you love them? Love those things and events? You can if you choose to. Some may be a bit easier than others, but all doable.

Whatever is going on in and around our lives, we always have and always will have the choice of our perspective on them. We can exercise compassion, love, acceptance, allowing, appreciation, or we can choose fear, disgust, hatred, violence, irritation. I have chosen them all and many more. I now practice my definition of compassion. In doing so, I am changed and have released myself from my own prison. The vision of that is like after a week of rain, the sun is shining in all its glory with the clearest deep blue sky, and that sweet smell of that change.

"One Man Practicing Kindness In The Wilderness Is Worth All The Temples This World Pulls." -- Jack Kerouac 

Spread Some Joy Today--by turning your love light on high beam.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-11-18

"Keep a light, hopeful heart. 
But expect the worst." 

-- Joyce Carol Oates 

[Classic post from 10-24-16]

Continuing with the idea of practical Spirituality.

I love the quote above because it is so silly, but I don't think she was laughing when she wrote it. Sure, "keep a light, hopeful heart," is a grand platitude, but then to negate it with, "but expect the worst," is bizarre, and yet, it is how many of us live in the world today.

It is said that we get what we expect, and so to expect the worst is to attract it to us and then how long do you suppose a light, hopeful heart will last? Until you turn on the news? Pick up the newspaper?

Does it even occur to us that to expect the worst and then try to keep a light, hopeful heart is so much work? It's got to be tiring, stressful to contradict ourselves all day long. A house divided cannot stand?

We think, 'well, this is life. This is how it is. This is my lot. I can't imagine how I could _________. There's no use in ____________ because ________ is ________.' And, all of this is trying so desperately to have a light, hopeful heart while expecting the worst, isn't it?

That's when people say, 'all that Spiritual stuff sounds good, but it isn't real, and it isn't practical. All that philosophical stuff is bunk.' They agree with Amit Kalantri when he says, "lovers tend to be philosophical, achievers are practical." We want practical. It's like Tony Blair, when he said, "What matters is what works." 

So one of those Spiritual, philosophical things is that Law of Attraction idea: What is like unto itself is drawn. Yeah, so why isn't the money in my bank account yet? Why hasn't my life changed for the better? I've been thinking positive thoughts. . . well, sort of. . . I mean when I think about it I do. . . when I have time to set aside to think. . . but I'm so busy. . . I got so much to do. . . I gotta pay the rent. . . I don't have time for this crap. . . I want results! Now!

Perfect. Results are what the Law of Attraction is all about. It always, unerringly, unfailingly produces results. You think thoughts, and more thoughts like that are drawn, and the more focus or attention is given to a thought to the point that emotion is felt, the more like it are drawn. You could think of that as the gas pedal in a car. The more you press the gas pedal, or the stronger the thought, the faster the car goes, or the faster and more powerful are the like things drawn. 

A strong thought doesn't just draw another like thought, but it also begins acting on the strength of the thought by helping to create opportunities, ideas, circumstances. In other words, those thoughts now become things and those things that match the strong thought become new circumstances, meeting people with similar goals, opening doors that we didn't even know existed.

However, as we work so hard to keep a light, hopeful heart, but expect the worst, we immediately negate the idea of improvement. Instead, the more powerful thought, which in this case has to be to expect the worst, the Law of Attraction goes to work on that, or best case is that we simply stand still and nothing much happens to change. We desire to change, and then we expect to not change if that makes more sense.

Simplicity is the way the Universe works. Simplicity rules. So to keep it really simple, as we focus on what we want, more of that is drawn, and as we focus on what we don't want, more of that is drawn. We can go back and forth, back and forth at will. We can wonder why these bad things keep happening to us when that is not what we want and wonder why our positive thoughts don't seem to help. But, that doesn't change the fact that the simplicity and consistency of the Law of Attraction are at work 24/7/365.

Realizing this is always working on our behalf is all that is needed to understand what we are getting. If we are not getting what we want, follow the trail to our thoughts and expectations. Expectations are only thoughts that have more power, and that is why we get more of what we expect than what we think. 

Practicality and the Spiritual Law of Attraction are one in the same. It is eminently practical, and it is also completely Spiritual. Make use of it or ignore it as one might wish. It doesn't care. Use it to benefit yourself or bring more and more hardship. It doesn't care. It is completely and exquisitely neutral.

Your Wish Is Its Command. Wish For. Wish Against. Your Choice. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by making the simple choices. I recommend the ones that feel good.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-10-18

"Many think Spirituality 
is a buzz word 
for that mystical unknowable 
 which is beyond 
that which we live, 
but Spirituality without practicality 
is impotent." 

-- Albert K. Strong 

[Classic post from 10-23-16]

When I think of Spirituality, I think not so much of some idea to attempt to explain the depth of our being, or even the connection of all beings, or even the eternity of life, but I like to see how I can have it relate to my actual living day to day on this blue planet called Earth spinning in space in the middle of nowhere.

In other words, how does considering Spirituality help me in my daily life? So, as I study this thing called Spirituality, I seek to use that knowledge in my life to improve, grow, expand, understand. As well, when I write my thoughts out here, I always try to say it in a way that can be useful right here, right now to help us live life more fully. And, last, it has to be simple to be practical, otherwise, it will remain esoteric, or only for those who are enlightened and have risen above the practicality of the life most of us live.

The only prerequisite is to realize and accept that there is something more than we. I didn't create me that I am aware of, nor did I create you, nor any other, so there is something going on beyond us.

Regardless of our age, if we but allow, we can sense within us that there is some kind of connection to something more than we are. Some call it a soul, some Christ Consciousness, others call it Spirit, the Universe, All-That-Is, God, and hundreds of other choices. What we call it is not important, only that we recognize that there is some sort of connection however mysterious that may be to us or not fully understanding it. We all know it is there.

As well, in realizing this connection, we sense without a doubt that it is benevolent and that it is like love, even a very deep love, as we allow ourselves to feel more of the intensity of our inner Spirit.

So here's the simple practicality in its simplest form to consciously connect that mysterious Spirit with our practical mind and body: It is our guide. It doesn't control. It is not like an auto-pilot, or a dictator, however benevolent. All it does is give us advice via our feelings of what might work for us rather than against us. A guidance system so to speak.

Wayne Dyer in his book, Living An Inspired Life, says it this way: "It's important to understand that each and every one of us represents God or Spirit revealing Itself here on our planet." He then demonstrates the practicality by asking, "In what direction are you moving? Being in-Spirit is a direction we take, rather than a destination to be reached. . . It's imperative for all who seek an inspired life to assess the direction of their thoughts and behaviors in terms of going toward, or away from, Spirit." 

Abraham, Esther Hicks uses the analogy of being in alignment with or out of alignment with our Inner Being, or our Inner Guidance System. I love both Wayne Dyer and Abraham's visual explanations, and I have come to use them both in my daily life, every single day now.

Love is a perfect example of being in alignment, and fear being out of alignment. As well, love is moving toward Spirit and fear is moving away. Appreciation is in alignment, while complaining is out of alignment. Peace is moving toward Spirit and feeling despair or unworthiness is moving away.

This is not religion. There are so many religious beliefs. My experience with religion is that more often than not, the Spirit is lost in the dogma, although religion can be helpful for many, and Spirit is within all because Spirit is within us all. Each of us will know whether the rules, laws, and dogma are helping us connect within to our Spiritual connection, or not by how we feel. Feeling good is connecting, feeling off is disconnecting.

So the key or the communication aspect of our inner Spirit is our feelings. As we feel good, relief, improvement, we are moving toward Spirit or coming into alignment with our Spirit, and as we feel not good labeled in so many ways, we are moving away from our Spirit, or out of alignment.

The simple practicality of Spirit is paying attention to how we feel when we say something, do something, think something. How do we feel when we complain? How do we feel when we dis somebody, put them down, talk behind their back? How do we feel when we appreciate someone, something someone did or created? How do we feel when we are saying yes to love and no to hate? How do we feel when we are afraid? How do we feel when we are at peace? Moment by moment, we know where we are in relation, in conjunction, in partnership with our physical mind and body, and our Soul, Inner Spirit, Immanuel or God within as we accept this very simple understanding of practical Spirituality. 

"Out Of Clutter, Find Simplicity. From Discord, Find Harmony." -- Albert Einstein 

Spread Some Joy Today--by realizing that joyful connection to All-That-Is within yourself. You only have to let go and breathe.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-9-18

"Inspiration has nothing to do 
with whether we win or lose." 

-- Wayne Dyer 

[Classic post from 10-22-16]

In his wonderful book, Living An Inspired Life, Wayne adds, "Attempting to do something, even if it doesn't succeed is inspiring because we don't tend to regret what we do, we regret what we didn't do. Even following a futile attempt, we're inspired because we know that we gave it a shot. It's wondering whether we should or shouldn't try something that leaves us feeling stressed and incomplete." 

Who won the World Series in 1935? Who lost it in 1947? Does it matter? Does it really even matter who made it to the World Series, or the Super Bowl? What really matters is that people showed up, and came together to do, to be a part of doing.

What does it mean to be number one? It means nothing after the contest is over. What does it matter if you got into the Hall of Fame? After you got there, it doesn't. It really doesn't matter what we did, but only matters what we are doing. I have, as all others have, a long list of things we have done. We have judged them while doing and after they were done. Sometimes we hold on to them and carry them like baggage for long periods. Some feel good, some don't. And, none of that really matters because it is over. Done. Used to be. Was. Not today. Not now. History.

What matters only is now. What are we doing now? Are we bringing the fullness of ourselves to what we are doing right now? The more we let go of what was, and what may be, the more fullness we can bring to what is. 

When we connect with the fullness of who we are in the moment of now, we cannot help but be inspiring to others. What is important in the now moment? Pure experience. Learning. Loving. Being. Caring. Respecting. Sharing. Giving full attention to others. Enjoying. Whatever the tasks in front of us, they are no bigger, nor any more important than can fit in the moment. There is no stress because stress is a reflection of the past and a projection of the future. Stress cannot exist in the present moment.

What is interesting to me about the present moment is that it contains all of time. It is as if time is vertical rather than horizontal. It is as if there is no such thing as time. There is only experience, awareness, and as we are in this physical body, there is doing, and the only time that we can do anything is the present moment. I cannot do anything in the past. I cannot do anything in the future. I can only do right here, right now.

This is the value of inspiration. It is being in the present moment as much as possible. To practice it, to live it. The future which doesn't really exist will take care of itself. It will do that in the present moment. The past which is sort of an illusion--a memory will be what it was when we release our hold on it. The only time we can do that is right now.

There is nothing but now. Now is the place we live. If we are actually present in the now moment, we are inspired, and we are inspiring. As we drag around the past and project the future, we are cloudy, uninspiring, out of sync, and we miss the fullness of ourselves and the fullness of the present experience.

What will people remember most about you after you're gone? They will remember when you were present with them in the moment, and the more of those moments you were present with them, the grander the memory. Will they care if you were number one in your job? Will they care how hard you worked, and how many hours you put into it? No. They will remember when you were fully present with them.

The Only Real Value Of Living Is To Be Here Now As Freely And Fully As Possible. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by paying attention to your moments as they are here now.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-8-18

"Hate, it has caused 
a lot of problems in the world, 
but has not solved one yet." 

-- Maya Angelou 

[Classic post from 10-21-16]

The word Semite has come to mean Jew or Jewish, but the word began to describe a wide area of people who spoke certain languages, and interestingly enough, the majority is Arabic.

I'm reading a huge and fascinating book by Ron Chernow called, The House of Morgan - An American Banking Dynasty and the Rise of Modern Finance. The history of that family and others in their association spoke often of being anti-Semitic, or hating to deal with Jews, and avoiding any association with them and making that clear with all of their partners.

I've read or heard that sentiment many times, and I have never understood what it means. So I went to Google search and typed in, what are the reasons for Antisemitism? I didn't even have to go past page one as I printed out about 20 sheets of paper from three different sites explaining it as best they could. I was amazed that after all the Antisemitism in the world to know that the reasons were just plain stupid and had no merit that I could find. There was a long list of potential reasons, and not one reason had merit to me. Not one. Yet, all this hatred for a group of people sharing a religious idea and a certain heritage, and there was no difference between one who was devout and one who barely recognized the Jewish faith. All thrown in together in the hate room.

Of course, this has been going on for so long, even if there was a valid reason, no one can remember it. And, to this we have added anyone in the Muslim or Islamic faith, whether devout, or barely recognizing there is the Islamic faith, there they are all in one hate room, but a separate hate room from the Jews because we certainly don't want those two huge groups plotting together!

Then there were the Japs, the Nazis, the Protestants vs. the Catholics, the Filipinos, Mexicans, South Africans, Indians, and well, this list is pretty much endless, as well it comes back on the Americans from other countries. It is simply amazing how much hate there can be in the world.

And, here's the best and worst of it: it begins and ends with me. And you. And them. Every bit of it is in our mind. We created it, or we believed it when someone else made it up and passed it along. And, each and every one of us gets to choose to believe it or to turn away from hate. 

This is also the complete silliness of war. Military generals in our own armies have said, "let's go nuke 'em!" As if that would make their mind clean. We cannot make something on the outside of us into the scapegoat for what we are thinking. We must begin inside ourselves. Do we really want to hate other people? Are there really good enough reasons for hatred? I could find none in history for hating Jews, and none for hating Muslims, or any others. Even if that reason did exist, it would exist only in our own mind.

Just writing this makes me tense inside. So, I relax, let that business go, fall away, be not part of me. Instead, I turn on my love light and love them for the specialness that they have and of the grandness of who they are. I appreciate their diversity, their differences. I have no need to join them in their thinking, but I can appreciate it, as I appreciate the diversity in Mother Nature, all the thousands of varieties of plants, trees, grasses, fruits, vegetables, dirt, rocks, mountains, all around me.

I don't hate the mountain and love the valley, or hate the so-called weed and love the so-called good plant. They are all creations by whomever, or whatever our Creator is, long before I came to be here. Who am I to hate the Creator? But, the hatred of people has nothing to do with the Creator, except in that we have been given the free will to think on our own and make choices on our own. We choose. We choose to hate. And, we choose to love. What does hate serve? Maya says that hate "has not solved one [problem] yet." It never will. It never will. It cannot.

This all applies on a global scale, as well as on the scale of our daily living. We get to choose what we will think and believe. A belief is simply a thought we keep thinking. We get to choose how we want to feel. We don't need reasons to make a choice. We can choose to feel good for no reason and we can choose to feel bad for no reason. How do I want to feel? Great question. What is the reason I feel this way? Does it really matter? What is the value of hate? Hmmmm. Good question! Nothing on my list. What is the value of love? Well, to me love is all.

Whenever some thought or a thought from someone else makes me tense up, I recognize it doesn't feel good. This is our perfect guidance to lay down the rope, relax, breathe deeply, and release. It takes only a few seconds. Once the tenseness is gone, love automatically fills in for me. It is something I have learned to value and practice. It now guides my entire life.

Worldwide Hatred or Worldwide Love Begins With One Person's Thinking And Feeling. Choose As You Will. 

Spread Some Joy Today--as you make that choice.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-7-18

"Knowledge is a priceless gift. 
But the illusion of knowledge 
can be more dangerous than ignorance."

-- Pico lyer 

[Classic post from 10-20-16]

This wonderful quote that I gleaned from a TED Talk reminds me of the final 2016 Presidential debate last night.

But, more than this, so many of us might think we know when we don't, and for a variety of reasons, we feel that we should know, and that we will fail, and look stupid if we don't know, so we might then be encouraged to pretend we know, to use sound-bites that demonstrate that we have control of some of the words of knowledge, and sometimes we are even successful at fooling people. But, alas, we don't really know.

As long as we realize we don't know, even if we think we should or need to pretend that we know, we are far less dangerous than when we don't know and have forgotten that we don't know, and have adopted with some authority the illusion of knowledge, or the illusion that we know. In this case, we've gone beyond thinking that we know into the place of knowing, and yet it is still true that we don't know, it's just that we no longer care.

What is wrong with not knowing? What is wrong with admitting that we don't know? What is wrong with being open to being taught? What is wrong with allowing others to help us? What is wrong with feeling vulnerable? Why do we think we have to know when we don't? What value is there is pretending we know when we don't? Hmmm. Interesting questions. 

I own a business that works with the Internet. The Internet is a humongous thing. It is vast. It is complicated. It is ofttimes very technical, and even that is complicated. At the same time, it is simple. We all make use of the Internet in one or more ways and may not have any technical knowledge, or need any. To know the Internet fully is not necessary to make use of it. In fact, to know the Internet fully is pretty much impossible.

Yet, that being said, there are a lot of people who pretend to know, who have the illusion of knowledge, and they can be dangerous. Sometimes I have pretended to know more about it than I do and every time I've been caught not knowing. So, I pretty much have stopped pretending. I admit that I don't know.

Of course, there is much that I have learned about the Internet in the process of doing business within that realm, but pretty much what I have learned is that there is so much that I don't know, perhaps a million times more than I do know.

It's funny sometimes when I'm talking to a knowledgeable Internet person who is surprised when I don't know something, and so they wonder how I can be in business and not know. I have to say that this is an interesting concept, but it works. I'm certain that the seemingly knowledgeable person that I refer to also knows many times less than he or she claims to know. It's just that they have the illusion of knowledge maybe or they could have gone beyond to not caring what they don't know.

Well, I could go on, but I'll stop here. What is wrong with not knowing? I don't think there is anything wrong with not knowing. Besides, there are numerous people who know more than I who have been willing to share their knowledge. I think we each are in these same places in our lives. We help fill others, as they help fill us. It is only in our ignorance and being closed because we think we know that gets us in trouble. As we admit, even celebrate that which we do not know, we are open to the truly magical world of learning. 

"You're Only As Strong As Your Readiness To Surrender." -- Pico lyer 

Spread Some Joy Today--by chilling with your killing and becoming more willing.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-6-18

"The way to work with resistance 
is by relaxing." 

-- Michael A. Singer 

[Classic post from 10-19-16]

This morning I'm taking part of one page in easily one of the most powerful books I have ever read, The Untethered Soul, by Michael A. Singer. If you haven't read it, I absolutely recommend it. I've sent it to my entire team and many other friends to share the love just a bit. And, this post is meaningful to me because I have figured out what Michael is saying here, although we use different words in some of it. It is about resistance and what it does within us and how to deal with it. In essence, the quote above says how: by relaxing.

I've called it letting go of the rope. I'm a very visual thinker I guess, and when I can 'see' a thought, it helps me understand it better. When we are holding that rope as if we are in a tug-o-war game with another opponent or multiple opponents, or it is also true that our opponents need not be people, but can easily be thoughts, beliefs, ideas, scenarios, and more. As we hold that rope, there is a great deal of resistance within our body and our mind too.

We're tense, our muscles are taut, we are struggling for our space, where we want to be, to hold on to our point of view, or any number of reasons that we are holding that rope. We are resisting the pull of our opponent(s) and often those opponents are within our own thoughts.

I usually say to drop the rope, let go, lay it down, turn toward peace. This is exactly what Michael refers to using the word relax. We simply and exquisitely relax. As we relax, all that chatter becomes white noise, and as we return to our inner peace, even the white noise disappears.

Michael says, "This process of relaxing through resistance is beneficial to everything in your life." I agree. By making the choice to relax, let go of the rope, turn toward my inner peace, this act has dramatically improved my life. Major.

He adds, "Deep inner release is a spiritual path in and of itself. It is the path of nonresistance, the path of acceptance, the path of surrender." Another word I use often that I learned from Abraham, Esther Hicks is to allow. They call it the Art of Allowing. Learning to allow everyone and everything around you to be what it is without my needing to attempt to direct or control it.

Michael adds, "The key is to just relax and release, and deal only with what's left in front of you." In other words, ignore, or rather, release allowing the noise around you to control because it is way too much. Overload. Bring it to a simplicity by giving your attention to only what is right in front of you--here and now.

Here's the best part. He says, "You will feel much more love than you've ever felt before. You will feel more peace and contentment, and eventually, nothing will ever disturb you again." I wholeheartedly agree. As I have practiced letting go, I have experienced love as never before, and it is the unconditional love that blows me away. And, peace? Oh my goodness, yes. Love and peace together is I think, that contentment he mentions.

I no longer have the silly responsibility of changing the world or even really changing me. I simply let go of the rope, let go of my own resistance, tenseness, and my jumbled confused thoughts. I just let go of me. Once I've let go, I can feel the love welling up within me for all that I was previously resisting.

As he said, "eventually nothing will ever disturb you again." I'm not quite there yet, but I am so much closer to that. I can say now that there is very little that disturbs me, and once I realize that I am acting disturbed, I consciously lay the rope down and come back to love and peace.

Try it for yourself. Next time you feel tense inside, muscles taut, thoughts swirling during your day, stop! Let go of the rope. Relax. Breathe. Spend a few seconds in peace and feel the love well up within you. It doesn't take long, a few seconds will do fine. Then return to your day, your tasks, your meeting, or whatever you were doing. I predict you will see a dramatic difference, but what is better, is that you will feel different. Viva la difference!

Is That Worthy Of Practice? It Is For Me! 

Spread Some Joy Today--by releasing your resistance to all the blocks you've installed to your own joy. Really, that's all it takes. It is effortless.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-5-18

"The meeting of two personalities 
is like the contact 
 of two chemical substances: 
if there is any reaction, 
both are transformed." 

-- Carl Jung 

[Classic post from 10-17-16]

On Friday morning, I had a fascinating experience. I went to Walmart to pick up a few things. On my way in, and as is typical around this store, a needy person was asking for spare change from someone to my left. I thought that I would catch her when I came back out and give her some money.

When I came out, I was prepared and as I turned the corner, she was no longer there, but in her place was a tall black gentleman standing and he seemed to be preaching. I pushed my cart over and stood directly in front of him, and faced him. I was within 2-3 feet of him. For just a moment, he was ever so slightly startled that I stood there so close but did not move and he didn't miss a beat in his message.

He had a deep, pleasant, and booming voice. I don't think he would need a microphone in a large auditorium. His message was all about coming to Jesus, stopping our sinful ways and such. It wasn't hell, fire, and brimstone, but it wasn't as positive as it could have been either.

I stood there for at least 2-3 minutes staring at him, smiling, giving him love and attention. Other than that one moment of being startled, he didn't even acknowledge that I was there. He didn't look at me directly, although I was looking at his face the whole time. His head was going back and forth preaching to what he might have imagined was a big crowd, but essentially, I was the only one giving him or his message any attention at all.

I thought that perhaps he might say something to me, ask for a donation, ask me directly to come to Jesus, or anything else to even acknowledge my presence. He did not. I was amazed.

After the time I was there, I turned my cart and headed to my truck. I passed a lady who said something about the weird old man out of his mind, yapping away. I said to her, "he is enjoying himself and doing what he loves to do." She seemed surprised by my remarks.

People are amazing. Just watching them is fun and insightful. I was in this guys face so to speak, with a huge grin on my face, enjoying his wonderful voice and his act of speaking out his thoughts and feelings. I would have loved to sit down and have a long conversation with him, but he had his job to do and he was very much into it.

The fact that he didn't move away from me, side to side or back away, I thought was so interesting. I was very close to him and he stood where he was the whole time I was there. We were about the same height so we were eye to eye.

I've never had an experience like this before. I've certainly seen numerous people preaching outside, but this was so different. It was intimate. It was powerful. I felt nothing but love for the man, and I was truly enjoying hearing him speak while watching the determination on his face. I could tell he meant what he was saying, and I was enjoying him; albeit, his choice of perspective on the message was not for me.

I did agree with placing my focus on God. I love a little story by Alan Cohen in his book, The Dragon Doesn't Live Here Anymore. He was upset that two friends of his had a falling out and parting of the ways. He talked with his teacher about how badly he felt about the breakup, and that he didn't understand it.

The teacher asked him, "what kind of happiness is that? You have let their actions determine your happiness. They were together and you were happy. Now they are apart, and you are unhappy. What will you do if they get together again? . . . Be happy? Do not invest your happiness in the outside world, which is constantly changing and can never bring you real peace. Why not place your happiness in God, the unchanging, Who will never let you down?" 

I think this is what the man at Walmart wanted to say, but he didn't know how to say it. He was commanding rather than encouraging. That might work with some, but Alan's teacher will capture more with his or her message.

Love And Enjoy People As They Are. I'm Sure We Would Appreciate That Sentiment From Others. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by seeing all the many ways to experience joy in your life.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Daily Inspiration 2-4-18

"Anything worth doing 
is worth doing poorly 
until you learn to do it well." 

-- Steve Brown 

[Classic post from 10-15-16]

Following up on yesterday's very simple, all profound statement to choose to feel good, here is a quote from Abraham, Esther Hicks to ponder for your Saturday:

"All the resources you will ever want or need is at your fingertips. All you have to do is identify what you want to do with it, and then practice the feeling-place of what it will feel like when that happens. There is nothing you cannot be or do or have. You are blessed Beings; you have come forth into this physical environment to create. There is nothing holding you back, other than your own contradictory thought. And your emotion tells you that you're doing that. Life is supposed to be fun-it is supposed to feel good! You are powerful Creators and right on schedule. Savor more; fix less. Laugh more; cry less. Anticipate positively more; anticipate negatively less. Nothing is more important than that you feel good. Just practice that and watch what happens." 

Practice Is The Best Part Of The Journey. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by simply allowing it by letting go of your resistance to it. That's all it is. It is there all the time if you will only let go of your cares and worries and allow. Even a minute at a time is progress!