Thursday, December 30, 2010

Friday, December 24, 2010

Here Is An Interesting Fact Of Life

For me to touch them … they had to be touching me.

Most people never notice this one.

For my life to be focused and centered in reality … and in reality is the key word phrase here … I had to be real. So it follows if I am to be real:

If I can come in contact with them … and conversely … they with me … I have to consider that I might not be destroyed by the contact with them.

My conundrum was that I was afraid … I was hiding … hiding deep inside my own skin, far below the surface of my metaphorical pond … the one that I hide in the depths of, while appearing to be somebody at the surface … but if I wanted to have the life I said I always wanted to have … I had to at least come to the surface and be present and accountable for a period of time.


Being Real Counts Anywhere It Happens

… But When It Happens Where The Skin Meets The Air...

Now That Is Profound




Thursday, December 16, 2010

This is not about who I am

This is about what happened to Me

An Open Mind

An Open Heart

And a Willingness to Change

 
Perfect

Upright

And Beautiful

Somedays My Behaviour Stinks

I'm Not My Behaviour

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

31 On Appreciating Resistance

EXPERIENCE has taught us that in our culture we do all we can to push aside those experiences that bring us closer to our deeper and hidden past. We tend to keep them at a distance and pretend they don’t exist.

It is like living at the base of the volcano and ignoring the intrinsic dangers of being there in the first place, simply because we choose not to notice.

When we think of life in this context there is some merit to the idea that we choose to be “entertained” by life in the fashion that we are.

So . . .

. . . as long as we push away the pain, it has us nailed to the wall. But when we stop resisting it we sort of let it in. It is actually a relief; we feel better in spite of it.



No Longer At Odds With Everything
Extracted from a Client's Story oh so many years ago: However in the end the pain faded and I was able to realize just how sick my family was and let go. If asked if I would do the court thing again I'm not sure what I would say.

It was hell.

However, at the time, it was what it took for me to let go of my past and turbo burst into a new future full of freedom, love and dreams coming true.

I often watched people in therapy after some times finally come to the point where they were ready to deal with their core issues. Their biggest inner demons and then over and over again always avoiding it  always with very well intentioned plans, either through intellectualization, a new relationship, moving away, a new job, getting angry with Neil and quitting, deciding they were finished just when they were actually getting started, being really busy, a series of ongoing crises (my personal favorite) etc.

For me taking the time to sort through my core family issues and all those childhood traumas; a bunch I had forgotten; so much sadness and grief, that was the key to a life of freedom.

I needed to find someone who had been through his or her own hell and back again who knew the way to support, and comfort me. To teach and discipline me so I could learn personal boundaries and most of all to love me and love me and love me until I could learn to love again. For me, that someone was Neil.

I saw five or six therapists before him, but he had really done his stuff and I can see he still does. It's that love and his humanness and experience that gave me the strength to go through.

Group therapy with a capable and compassionate facilitator is from my experience one of the most effective ways of moving through these core family issues and making permanent life changes. There are a lot of “shitty” therapists out there or mediocre well-meaning ones, and some that really know their stuff. Neil knows his stuff.









Saturday, December 11, 2010

Some Times Poetry is More Clear Then Pros

SCHOOL LIFE, SO TO SPEAK

Living life between a rock and a hard place

Insulting names hurled like stones

The heart turns to steel, caged like a captured animal - defenceless

You learn to put on stone armour to hide behind

Fighting back only makes things worse

Having no place go, no one to turn to

No friends for support, but so desperately seeking

There was no rest not at school, not at home.



Last again, but I knew that was coming, my place already predetermined

Back of the pack again and again

The ump calls batter up, instead I am battered up

Dodging the balls hurdled at me was a daily game I was forced to play

I am out before I reach first plate; in fact I was out before the game started

Why me, why am I always the target

No angels in my outfield, to save and protect me

Where were all the responsible adults at my greatest time of need?



As I sit and learn my ABCs and 123s, I am surrounded by the cruelty of life

The teachers correct my work but, they never really help me

The classrooms were filled to capacity, but yet I was all alone

I am frozen in time from all the cold shoulders

Taunted and haunted to no end

Nothing changes as life passes by, hiding from the pain of abuse

Constantly trashed and then recycled over and over again

When you want to find me, just look in my favourite hiding place.



I wish I would have been able to tell them to take a hike or fly a kite

The bulling inflicted was like bullets fired into my heart

Life was like playing a game of hide and seek, where I hid and no one seeks me

Encapsulated in a world that I so desperately wanted to escape

Each day brought the same old, same old; again and again until you believed it was the only way

On a scale of 1 to 10, my life was a "0"

The torture was so great I felt like I was living in hell

Escaped at last with no desire to go back – no more repeat visits for me.



Who ever came up with the saying "Sticks and stones may break your bones but names will never hurt you", never lived a life like mine, as the names did hurt, a very deep lasting hurt.



J M H - 2010

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

So All Is Normal ?

STATEMENT OF FACT: So All Is Normal?- All Is Well?  ... and How Do I tell?
May not be a statement of truth, and the higher probability is that in all likelihood it does not define Healthy either, even though most of us assume it does.
For some, denial may have been a learned survival or safety mechanism. If you really saw or talked about what was happening in your family where you grew up, you might not have survived childhood. You may have been taught not to notice what was happening to you and to other people in your family in order to maintain a "one big happy family" fantasy for the outside world. Of all the things you were taught to ignore, it is the lack of recognition of your own feelings that usually has the most devastating effects on you and your re-lationships and others. Co-dependency, like most addictions, is a feeling disorder.
Consider the following:
7R's and 6 D’s
  • The 7R's of living in Life are as follows: Rules, Roles, Relationships, Respon-sibilities, Respect, Resources, Returning Cycle.
  •  The 6 D’s are a slightly more abstract as in understanding that codependency has six major faces or sides. They are Denial, Delusion, Distortion, Defensiveness, Dishonest and Despair.

Simple Statement of Truth:

Simple Statement of Truth:

Experiencing our discomfort simply as it is and not being carried off imagining that it is the end of the world, has some hidden benefits; benefits that we may never have either considered or imagined without slowing things down enough just to notice.

The experience of having our feelings, simply as they are, presents unexpected outcomes, but only if you take the time to notice. For instance simply having the experience rather than attempting to shun it or push it away, or mood alter can in and of itself have the ability to open us up to dynamics and to places within us that are so vast and rich, so full of the presence of spirit and creativity that it would be hard to describe them, let alone imagine them to be there without having the opportunity to experience them.

People who have experienced this awakening to the deeper side of life have done so as the result of experiencing life from a prospective that was life threatening and or terrorizing, and they report that in the midst of all the clamber and hullabaloo they came in contact with aspects of themselves that they never would have imagined were there to be contacted in the first place. Now the oddity of it all is that they might never have considered of looking inside the pain, the confusion the clamber and hubbub to see what was there and they only reason that they did was because they had no choice, it happened to them.

• So how can one become skilful at taking benefit from those observations and intimacies that scares me nearly to death?

• How can one go about touching base with the deeper side of things that seem only to be accessible via methods that are both scary and uncomfortable?

• Then if you wanted to stretch it just a little further how could one use the wisdom gleaned from the experience of crossing over into that place as a template for resolving life’s difficulties.

• Is it possible to source the deeper aspects of yourself and not be scared to death as you do it?

Simply have the feeling. Not being lost in it or having to run away from it or re arranging it to appear to be something that it is not but rather to simply sit on it and noticing, just watching to what is happening both on the inside and the outside.

Just notice.

That is all that is required.

All most to a person, we have a strong desire to shun the sensation of what is initially perceived as unpleasant or uncomfortable and all most to a person we will hesitate to even admit that this opportunity of deep introspection is there just waiting for us, should we choose to try it.

• Scary thought not to run away from the fear or the hurt and the pain.

• Scary thought just to have it and notice all its qualities.

I have done this many times and noticed one consistent thing; the feelings are never what I thought they were. Scary is not scary after I get passed the initial moment or onset and not reacted. I have found that there were stages to move through as I sat with the feelings, and the first and most intimidating of all is the overwhelming sense of vulnerability.

Vulnerability is like a vestibule or waiting area that leads to the deeper workings of the soul. The front hall if you like. Be there in vulnerability can be something akin to sitting in the dentist’s office waiting for your turn. Being there in vulnerability often seems to be an empty, creepy and lonely thing to doplace, yet when your consciousness simply stands there in it, waiting, it is then that you notice that there is a very particular discomfort that sets up deep within you. This discomfort has many noticeable features that can change from situation to situation and they can come together and seem to gather momentum to be come the working definition of creepy or lonely or empty and the list goes on and on.

We notice this strangeness and we will, quite naturally, want to make every effort to avoid it.

But … and this but is a major but … if you can just stay centered in the moment and allow yourself to delve deeper into the introspection of the natural and painful processes, know this, growth is hidden within the process of examination.

There is really only one major requirement and that is; that we stay with the sensation of vulnerable, or metaphorically, stand in the vestibule, and then simply notice what comes along in our consciousness.

Then simply notice.

Don’t grasp, don’t push, don’t run just notice. Allow it to be what it is and how it is.

Free from your influence that is being driven by your underlying fears.

Simply notice.

This is often said to be done in a fashion that we have never would have imagined possible and often as not, to heighten the affect, we do it with people or in circumstances we would have thought impossible to either be with or be in.

Imagine that ... doing something that I would never have thought possible.

Question To The Universe

So does vulnerable equal defense¬less?

1) And if it does, then when these two places in our consciousness come together do they conspire to bring about the pain, the pain we are afraid to have in the first place.

2) Am I complicit in my own suffering either covertly or overtly?

3) Are there times where life conspires with the circumstances to present situations that simply have no appetizing solutions, it seems that it is just more despair and depression?

So there you are in the midst of experiencing turmoil on many levels, intense sensations that most would want to call painful at levels in your being that you would never have imagined.

Now if you stay steady with it for just a few brief moments in time you may begin to notice something unusual, the sensation, in and of itself, begins to change. The business of standing in the vestibule of your soul becomes an interesting place to be.

The feelings evolves and as it does some of it evolves into that motivating force that will begin to move you towards sharing things you never would have dreamt of sharing with people you never would have thought of sharing with, ever, but … and here is the magical big but again … you do this because in all honesty, you need to for your own well being.

It is like an awakening or birth where the soul breaking out of its shell, the ego, much as a butterfly has to break out of the chrysalis to complete the transformation process, of becoming … what you might ask … of becoming intimate, actually become an intimate, someone who has had the experience and gleaned the wisdom to be able share from the heart.

Having the facility to share and listen and not be dominated with or by fear.

To be able to translate and transfer that experience to and with people in a fashion you never would have thought possible.

Imagine that ... doing the impossible.

What everyone notices who venture into this process is this:

(a) Those barriers that stood between you and you sharing with the world outside of you slowly began to fall away as an indirect aside from taking the time to appreciate the sensation for what it is.

(b) The appreciation process becomes the tool or the instrument of release from the cocoon of the ego, it is the process that is melting those barriers mentioned above.

(c) By stopping and doing this marks the beginning of the undoing of the self imposed isolation of self and the beginning of the undoing of that tiny little painful knot that is hidden deep down in your heart, something like the single pebble in the heal of your shoe. It becomes very wearisome after awhile.

(d) It also marks the beginning of the process that will allow you to touch the existence of the reality that lay at and just beyond the very surface of your skin. Something akin to a fish in a pond that discovers the surface and senses that there is something more out there, no idea what, but a sense that something is there and it is important to have. So he pokes his head up to the surface and begins to hang out there simply for the experience.

(e) By simply being willing to explore the deeper aspects of your own sensory output, this will eventually cause you to become aware that for you, more is possible.

Here is the interesting fact of life; for me to touch them they had to touch me, for my life to be focused and centered in reality I had to be real.

You can come in connect with them

and they with you

and not be destroyed by the contact.

My conundrum was that I was afraid and I was hiding deep in side my skin, far below the surface of my metaphorical pond but if I wanted to have the life I said I always wanted I had to at least come to the surface and be present and accountable.

Being Real Can Only Happen Where The Skin Meet The Air.

My pain brought me to the surface. I never said out of my body, just to the surface of my being.

It is at the surface of our existence, the skin line so to speak, where we find things like compassion, and understanding, love and caring, things that if we allowed them to sink in, to be absorbed, then we could begin to give over the hard driving perfectionist tread mill that we keep our selves on.

• We also might even notice others just like us at the surface too trying figure out what the hell to do too.

• We may just very well awaken into a place where we can begin to appreciate that we are not alone on the face of this planet and God has not made a mistake.

• That we really are here for a reason, and that reason might not have a darned thing to do with our logic and reason.

• We might notice that if we are actually paying close attention to all that is we might notice that there just might be a message in the fact that we are here in the midst of 6 or so billion other lost souls here too and maybe we should try experimenting with what we might be able to do with at least some of those others who seem to be aware of the predicament we are all in.

All our natural defenses of resistance are just devices we use to keep our focus off the job at hand, of exploring the universe we were born into.

So here is the conundrum:

We are left right in the middle of a life that has brought us to our knees by the sharp fragments and shards of it’s circumstances and there seems not to be an appetizing solution at hand, but there is a door, and that door seems to go places that could be both scary and painful, but as we stand where we stand in our life’s circumstance the very pain of standing there is slowly becoming overpowering so we either have to mood alter, pretend or get on with it and go through.

It is simply a decision.

It is the ramifications of that decision that are mind boggling when you stop and think about it.

As we begin to examine the pain of it all, we might just notice that there is a choice hidden away in there and I could have if I wanted it and that choice seems to be for me to step through the thought/passageway/door and enter a deep world of appreciation that has nothing to do with outer world values, that is now opening to me if only I choose; a place that is called by many different names and a place that for a time initially will appear to be filled with unknowingness, unfamiliarity and sometimes raw fear, but I now know that this will all pass, if only I give it a chance.

Finally as we are brought into touch with a place very deep inside our souls we find that this unknowingness slowly gives way to a place that has a quiet sense of immense strength and spaciousness.

It is place where courage and strength is sown and harvested, where our ability to imagine and accept and go on in the face of adversity comes to maturity and if drawn upon this place it allows us to preserver and get on with life as it is laid out for us.

It is a place where we can be stretched beyond what we think we could do, and then do whatever it is that comes next and needs to be done. This can all come to fruition in the face of the unfamiliar and the uncertain and done is such a fashion that your next action will be full of both a sense of self and a sense of creative genius intertwined into one new sensation.

It is a mystical place where you and your physical reality can meet up with your eternal essence. This meeting up is more a blending and it does not happen because of the pain or aversion, but rather out of a respect for life gained as you examine the pain and aversions of your life. It comes about because of the willingness you display to play on the edge of, and explore into the depths of, which allows you a greater access to that deeper part of you.

The re¬sistance to exploration of the pain is us holding that opportunity at bay purely out of fear of fear, because we believe we don’t know, and we don’t want to go round the corner and see. We are simply too scared. But if you just take the time to enter into the feeling of being scared you will notice it has deeper qualities too and it is only the device our mind is using to keep us from seeing our own true nature.

When we open to our suffering we open to our humanity … to all that is.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

What I didn't know before I had kids. Author Unknown

How many seconds it takes to microwave 4 fish sticks perfectly.

Who John Jacob Jingle Heimershmitt is.

How to change a diaper in the dark, in a parked car, on a standing child-and all of the above simultaneously.

Which lines of The Cat in the Hat and If I Ran the Circus can be skipped over without a child noticing.

How bright a 3 a.m. full moon is.

The design marvels of hooded towels, Velcro-strap shoes and mitten clips.

Locations of public restrooms all across town.

Why anyone would bother retracing their steps for miles just to retrieve a lost blankie.

That tigers live in the trees in our backyard.

The amazing technicolor variety of infant stool.

How to open a van door while bobbling 2 lunch boxes, two extra coats, a purse, a diaper bag and a baby.

The fine art of vacuuming a floor without hosing up a Barbie shoe or a Playmobil cannonball.

That solid white socks get lost in the dryer at a much slower rate than do the mates of patterned socks that coordinate to special outfits.

How little sleep a human body truly needs to function.

Almost every Disney lyric ever penned.

How to spell amoxicillin.

That one can never own too many sippy cup lids or refrigerator magnets.

Scientific names of dinosaurs from A to Z.

That reverse psychology really works.

The recipe for a homemade version of Play-doh.

That Duplo and Lego blocks procreate in the night.

The distinctive sounds of Cheerios crunching underfoot.

Why they call them Happy Meals.

The names of the leaders of Celesteville, Busytown and the Pride Lands (Babar, Mayor Fox, and Mufasa, Scar and Simba)

How far you can dilute juice and still retain it's taste.

That man (or child anyway) really can live on peanut butter alone.

That gender inequality starts early in clothing: Boy's underpants have a wide band on top, while the waistband and leg holes in girls look the same, increasing the odds that she'll pull 'em on tangled or upside down.

Sesame Street's air time.

The remarkable resemblance of a state-of-Florida puzzle piece (or a plastic hammer, a splay-legged Barbie or a piece of cheese scultped just so by tiny bites) to a gun.

That the bunny's name isn't Pat.

Translations of myella, babana, panyo, snunk, maldations, and nibbles (vanilla, banana, piano, skunk, dalmations and nipples).

That the more my kids learn, the less I seem to know.

The blessedness of naps, the inviolate importance of routines.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

On Having Faith In …

Faith has strange mystical qualities to it that aren’t readily noticeable at first.
 
Faith:
  • cannot think for itself:
  • does not have a consciousness.
  • will do what it does and where it is directed to do it, by it’s beholder.
  • will do whatever it is directed to do faithfully; after all, that is its job.
  • is blind.
 
So this business of having faith is as much a matter of where you place it, as it is a matter of having some. If you have faith in something unreal or something unhealthy, then you will feed the unreality or the lack of health and your faith will actually turn into a vehicle that works against your process of awakening while you appear to be making every effort to awaken.
  • Faith in something must be examined with great regularity. Just what the frequency of regularity is, will determine your future more so then having faith in the first place.
  • Note: as you examine this newfound faith you may notice your own self-centered motives at play under the thinly veiled guise of faith and spirituality. Creative selfishness.
  • The knack to the whole thing is to have some faith and then take direction from the experience of risking having that faith in the first place; then applying that wisdom and understanding gleaned from the risk taking and applying that into wisdom of your next moment.
  • Then be prepared to either make change happen, or accept change as it happens to you.
  • This is difficult, because the factors that the Ego used to make judgment calls about life and change are now absent.
  • Faith doesn’t have fear, hate, distrust, like, or dislike. In fact those feelings hinder the process of faith.
 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

EXPERIENCE has taught us that ... an experience with Spirit vs Ego

EXPERIENCE has taught us that it is both mindful and healing and for you to attempt this ongoing experiment. It clearly demonstrates a willingness on your behalf to want to experiment with, and to want to enter into an experience that might allow a fuller, more open relationship with a Higher Power. This next idea is an old concept.

The exercise is one example of ‘demonstrated willingness’.

It has many faces and has been presented many times in many forms. It is an understatement to say that this exercise tends to pit the ego against the Will of God, because that is exactly what it does and that is the idea of the exercise.

The exercise is simple enough, and in fact some may say too simple, but most find it to be work and most have difficulty completing the exercise.

So here are the rules:

1. You may elect not to actually try this experiment, but if you do decide to experiment, then all that is required is simply imagining what it would feel like for you to thoroughly believe five simple statements. This will achieve the purpose this exercise is designed to afford.

2. The exercise is this: simply affirm, a number of times a day, day after day, for six months, the following statements, imagining the full meaning of each statement to the fullest extent possible for you:


i. I am not separate. I am one with All that Is, All that Was and All that Ever Will Be.

ii. I can trust.

iii. I can know.

iv. I am responsible.

v. I am single-minded.

Taken from Experience Has Taught Us: 175 Missing Pieces,

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Beyond The Door There is a View

A Great Obscenity of Life seems to be my insatiable desire to surrender and give over my soul and my sanity to those who would eviscerate me.

I mean why? But I just keep on doing it! Habits are hard to break.

In my journey of recovery thus far, I have come to learn that this need of mine to turn my Life and Will over to inappropriate souls is done with a purpose, the purpose is twisted and has its origins deep in my past but it is there and it is demanding and it drives me at times.

The purpose seems to be for me to attain a (false) sense of acceptance and security. Something that I seem to believe I need so desperately that I will sell my soul to the “company store”. I’ll attempt to get those needs met from those around me. The oddity is all those around me have connections to the deeper, darker shadows and ghosts of my past. None of this is done at the conscious level. It is all done under the surface of my conscious mind, but it is working all the time and never seems to take a holiday.

When I saw this in all its many forms recently, it was then I realized what I was seeing fully for the first time(saw and realized are two different places in my consciousness). It was as if I stood on the Grand Vista of reality and I was gazing out over eternity. For the first time I could see clearly through the Mysts of Time, and see the length and breadth of the spiritual journey that lay before me, only if I were willing to go through that Door that sits at the center of the Great Hall of My Awareness.

I am

That I am

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

THE CHILD OF THE CAVE ... MASKS

They called her the Feline Mystery. No one knew her exact age. She was found in a cave by Yves Tingaud, whose dog had strayed during a hunting trip in the South of France. She was all curled up in the corner wearing a cat mask. It took Yves about an hour to calm her down. It seemed she was threatened by humans, although she had no fear of the dog.

After month of national media notoriety no one came forth to claim her. Yves and his wife Muriel being of mid life were childless. They decided to adopt her against the advice of all the professionals. They had no choice it was if she was a gift from destiny. They were captivated by her dark eyes and the mystery that surrounded her, and besides they had always been cat lovers. The cat mask that appeared to be tattooed on her face fascinated them; it was as if it was a part of her being. She did not speak. However she did purr occasionally but only in the presence of Yves and Muriel.

Felicity as she became known was stabilized and after considerable weight gain from all the dairy products she was fed was released from the hospital in the care of the Tingaud’s. They treated her as one of their own and over the years won her trust although she still did not speak, and still hid behind the mask that was an essential part of her being.

Over the years the health authorities had required Felicity to partake in various therapies in an attempt to get back her voice. They wanted to uncover the mystery of who she was and what had happened to her. She was resistant to all the therapies. The Electro shock treatments made her twitchy. The Prozac seemed to make her itchy, tired and withdrawn. The hypnosis made her sleep for days. Eventually and to the relief of the Tingaud’s, the authorities gave up on her.

They returned to the small village where generations of Tingaud’s have lived, back to the relative calm of the small café they ran. Felicity helped out at the café and over the year’s rose through the ranks from dishwasher to cook. The Tingaud’s secretly hoped one day she would wait on tables. Felicity was accepted by the villagers who like her parents accepted her for who she was. Although she was free to come and go in the village she still created quite a stir when tourists came upon her wearing her mask.

The Tingaud’s took her mystery for granted. Some things could never be explained. Felicity, disappeared twice a week for exactly an hour and a half. Paper also seemed to vanish in her presence. This had been going on for about four years.

Suddenly one day, out of the blue, with out warning Felicity spoke. Her dulcet tone sang out from the heavens as if to say Hallaluya shocking her parents. She only spoke a few words “ we are out of milk” but as she grew more comfortable with language a strange thing happened. The mask she wore on her face began to fade. Day by day the more she spoke and the more she revealed of herself the more it faded until eventually it was gone.

In time all was revealed, her mysterious disappearances turned out to be visits to her therapist. The mystery of the disappearing paper was also solved Felicity was a closet journaler.

Eventually her Journals were published allowing everyone to understand what had happened to her as a child. Felicity ‘s life long desire to help people who hide behind masks turned into a career. Felicity is now a self-help author who appears on French chat shows. She is now healthy and living in the South of Franc with her husband, a veterinarian. Some of her titles include, EMBRACING YOUR MASK, I’M OK BUT YOU WONT BE IF YOU KEEP WEARING THAT MASK and THE DARK SIDE OF THE MASK WEARERS. She recently gave birth to triplets; she affectionately calls them her litter.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

This Is Simple and Deep

This idea came to me from a friend who happens to know that I am going through a difficult time at the moment ... so in long hand in your journal answer the following 3 questions about whatever the problem is that you are suffering through or going through and simply don't seem to have an answer for ...  at this moment

1. What would your father do?


2. What would your first wife/husband/girlfriend/boyfriend do?


3. What would you do if you were Spirit?

See where it takes you ... and don't rush the answers ... if you try every other day to 2 weeks ... it may just get very interesting ... try writing in your off hand ... non dominate one ... see what comes out onto the page ... notice your feelings as you do ...

Thanks Leon ...

Monday, November 8, 2010

Absolutely Brilliant Email! ... sent to me this morning Just have to share

A lecturer, when explaining stress management to an audience, raised a glass of water and asked; 'How heavy is this glass of water?'

Answers called out ranged from 20g to 5

The lecturer replied, 'The absolute weight doesn't matter.

It depends on how long you try to hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. In each case, it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.'

He continued, 'And that's the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on.

'As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again.

When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden.

'So, before you return home tonight, put the burden of work or whatever is bothering you down. Don't carry it home. You can pick it up tomorrow.

Whatever burdens you're carrying now, Let them down for a moment if you can. 'So, my friend, put down anything that may be a burden to you right now. Don't pick it up again until after you've rested a while.'

Here are some great ways of dealing with the burdens of life:

* Accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue.

* Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.

* Always wear stuff that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it..

* Drive carefully. It's not only cars that can be  "Recalled" by their maker.

* If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague.

* If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again. It was probably worth it.

* It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to be kind to others.

* Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, Because then you won't have a leg to stand on.

* Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance.

* When everything's coming your way,. You're in the wrong lane.

* Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.

* You may be only one person in the world. But you may also be the world to one person.

* Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once.

* We could learn a lot from crayons.. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names, and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box.

*A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.

Have an awesome day and know that someone has thought about you today...

Barb M

I have no idea who Barb M is ... but thanks ...  especially after the weekend I had ... you are a life safer ... I need(ed) this
Neil

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Five

No Longer At Odds With Everything

It is a truth that those who have little room for their own pain in their own life, who cannot accept pain as a normal and natural part of their life, seldom, if ever, encourage others to enter directly into an experience with their feelings that could or would promote a more intimate understanding of this feeling and thus soften the resist¬ance to the feeling that the feeling engendered in the first place.

It is a given in this business that the resistance to pain in the long run only serves to enhance the pain. Thus examining it in some depth can only serve to relieve the pain.

Simply Put, It Breaks The Cycle

Most people seem to refuse to want to see that holding on to or attempting to smother or tightening up around the feeling only intensifies the suffering. This grasping at and holding onto is a defense strategy that was learned early on in childhood. It never worked well then, but that strategy was all there was and it seated itself deep into the psyche and now in a moment of crisis, out trucks the old ways in a vain attempt to control what cannot be controlled.

Pain for most is treated like a tragedy, something that should be played out rather then something that should be passed through.

Possibly it should be something that could ride on your left shoulder and give good guidance, if it were trusted. If it were more a part of your next moment because you have a relationship with it that allowed you insight and understanding, few, very few, recognize that there is grace to be found in the deeper investi¬gation of things that we were always trained to fear and shun.

"It isn't just the pain in my body that really hurts, it's all the pains of my life that I have to pull away from; “that” which imprisons me in my impression of how I think life should be. Me beginning to see my feelings in me just as they are, brings me to a point of seeing just how little time have I ever given to me having real feelings in my life and those real feelings included initially my pain, both physical and psychological."

Of those who have worked on these ideas with me, it is nearly universal; it wasn't just the pain in their body that they hadn't understood, it was also a myriad number of sensations like fear, boredom, anger, restlessness, self-doubt, just to name a few, which they had always pulled away from, which they had never allowed themselves to enter into, which when explored they found libraries of experience that they could now draw on and apply forward into the next moment.

Spiritual Principles for Recovery

Initially, we have to focus on honesty, open-mindedness, willingness, humility, and acceptance.

The practice of the Principle Of Honesty starts with admitting the truth about our life and continues with the practice of honesty on a daily, moment to moment, basis.

 When we say, "I'm in recovery" it may be the first truly honest thing we've said in a long, long time.

 We begin to be able to be honest with ourselves and, consequently with other people eventually.

 Change and recovery doesn’t happen overnight.

 If I've been thinking about acting out on my stuff I need to ask myself; have I shared it with my sponsor, my therapist or my group; have I told anyone else or am I still keeping secrets?

To practice the Principle Of Acceptance we must do more than merely admit that we have problems.

 When we accept our problems for what they are, we accept that they are not the working definition of self.

 When we accept our problems for what they are, we feel a profound inner change that is underscored by a rising sense of hope.

 We also begin to feel a sense of peace.

 We come to terms with our obsessions, compulsions and addictions in our recovery processes, and with this we come to appreciate the meaning and comprehend the realities these eccentricities have in our lives.

 We don't dread a future of recovery practices, of attending meetings, of interpersonal contact, of doing step work; instead, we begin to see recovery as a precious gift, and the work connected with it as no more trouble than other routines of life.

Exercise
 
An Open Doorway

Imagine this: there is an open doorway and on the other side of the doorway you hear three people and they are talking about you.

Here are the circumstances:

You know them all very well, for you they could be family if you like.

Second, you can hear their conversation very clearly, everything that is being said about you, you can hear.

Stop and listen. You won’t be noticed.

1) Write out what you would most like to hear them say about you.

2) Write out what you would least like to hear them say about you.

Don’t turn the page until you have written this all out … Done? … Over

Next

Now comes the Work

Know this, that at least in part what was written on the previous page was a list of your true Hidden Hopes And Fears.

So what do these two statements of “your hopes and fears” say about how you think others see you?

What does this tell you about yourself?

Write out what these two statements seem to imply to you.

As you look back at what you have written in this exercise, are these hopes and fears really important to you now? Next, were they more or less important in your past?

To what degree are they alive and meaningful your today life? And to what degree are they ghosts from your past, which you have been reacting automat¬ically without much re-evaluation?

To what degree have these “hopes and fears” about the opinions of others shaped your life up to now?

How much do you think they will affect you in the future?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

FOUR POWERFUL THOUGHTS

One
Surrendering begins by asking the Higher Power what we can do in our lives to help bring love, joining, harmony and joy back into our world.

Two
Each time that we accept the love God has for us; each time that we give our love to others and put a smile on another person's face, it is then that we have taken a giant step forward toward healing ourselves and healing a world suffering from lack of love.

Three
When we are surrendering, that is when we truly are listening. We may find answers on the lips of those who are closest to us at the moment. The answer doesn't always come from the fabled “inner voice”. Often it comes from those around us, a child, a friend, who is just gently speaking his or her mind, and out slips a simple truth.

Four
It happens to me over and over again ... not when “they” are focusing on the “answer” ... but just when they are busy not thinking about solutions. Just letting you know how they feel and see things. You see it all fits, if we give it a chance.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Some of My Many Pieces

Some days you just have to say screw it and jump

On Seeing Clearly Perhaps for the First Time―What’s Next and Why it is Next

EXPERIENCE has taught us that, unfortunately, the drama and trauma of life happened to us far too soon. Those who were supposed to protect us either could not or did not. Life’s pot got stirred at precisely the wrong moment; our impetuous newborn souls froze up in fear, and now hold on tight to anything they can, demanding that life come to them rather than that they go to life.

Stalled in the spiritual birth canal.

Demanding ever more and more; the content changing, but the form always staying the same.

Give me. Give me right now.

I don’t care what it is, just give me so I got it.

Give me so I can feel safe.

I’m not going out there after it; give it to me right here and now.

Confusion and fear … my ever-faithful traveling companions … arise yet again to do their handy work.

I begin by questioning life and all that is about me … and as I have noticed … at the time of my asking these deeper questions … they are seemingly real to me … but in hindsight I can see now that they were in no way connected to me either finding or seeing the truth.

Truth, I pondered that recently …

• Does my search for it actually get in the way of my attempts at finding it?

• Do my best efforts hold me back from what it is that I say I want?

I have gone over and over my history … my story … my past … in a vain attempt to be able to say out loud to anyone who would listen that I now … egotistically … understand … so I can say “I know” … as an aside I discovered that can be a dangerous thing to do …

I have noticed that as I did this review of my life thing in my mind I tended to edit and revise my story just to better suit it to the condition of my circumstances … help me explain the unexplainable … those things that I did that I can’t seem to find the courage to take responsibility for … to make a better story … to explain why it is that I do what it is that I do or did what I did … etc.

If I were being honest I would notice that I am secretly striving for control …

There it is … I said it out loud … is that Honesty?

Insatiable, needy, scared, loving, and friendly?

All in the same thought.

Taken from Chapter 19 Zen and the Art of Seeing Clearly ... Perhaps for he First Time ...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Laziness Defined

This whole journey here on earth is about spiritual growth. That much is true. Thus a spiritual direction needs to be found and followed, or at least that is the concept. To better understand the direction of spirituality then one has to consider the flip side of a spiritual direction or better said the hurdles to spiritual growth. And really there is only one thing that stands in the way, and that is laziness. It is the lack of willingness to overcome laziness-Entropy; it is that force in the universe that resists change. It was pointed out by Scott Peck in the Road Less Travelled that if Entropy is overcome, then all the other hurdles will be overcome. And conversely if we do not overcome laziness, none of the others will be hurdled. So really this journey is about laziness and how we deal with it.

In examining discipline, it needs to be understood that discipline has its roots in discipleship ... my willingness to follow... not to be forced to do what I need to do.

When we are considering the art of our la¬ziness which really is our attempts to avoid our “necessary,” “legitimate” suffering ... that btw defines our laziness ... we may just notice that we have a choice:

DO THE PAIN ... GO THROUGH

OR

TRY TAKING THE EASY WAY OUT

AND

AVOID THE PAIN.

Laziness is love's opposite. By looking at the facility of love and loving we are also examining the flip side of things, and non-love is our lack willingness to stretch to meet the standard of the day. Those things that we need to do. Spiritual growth is work, it takes effort. It is as simple as that, and not until you have done the work is it over. Most of the time what we discover is there is more work to do.

From Richard Bach’s
Illusions

The Messiah’s Handbook:

Here is a test to find out whether your mission on earth is finished:
If you’re alive: it’s not.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Change Real Change



Change real change comes from the inside out ...

It does not come from hacking at the leaves and windmills of our imagined reality ... It comes from facing the reality of our life and its problems and pains ...

It comes from facing our dilemmas square on together ... sorting through them and making a life’s course by doing so ... then going after it with reckless abandon.

Ask yourself:

• What do I really want from my life?

• What am I doing to actually have what I say I want?

• What is working for me? What Isn’t?

• What is a better plan that I can do to achieve what I want?

Then Know this :

When we extend ourselves, our self enters new and unfamiliar territory ... The experience of change, of unaccustomed activity, of being on unfamiliar ground, of doing things differently is frightening ... Courage is not the absence of fear. It is the making of an action in spite of the fear, the moving out against the resistance engendered by fear into the unknown and into the future. On some level spiritual growth, and therefore love, always requires courage and involves risk. It is (in coupling) the risk of love that we will now consider.  M Scott Peck ... Road Less Travelled



On Spiritual Path Finding

Once you have awakened from The Great Sleep Of Your Unawareness ...

Once you get past The Circumstances Of Your Best Imaginings ...

Once you’ve bumped into The Greater Way Of Things ...

There’s no turning back ...

Your problem is

Now you know.

And

This knowing cannot be undone ...

Once you’re initiated

You’re done.

Your Initiated.

And

Your life ... like it or lump it ... has changed ...

I had a Traveller once who screamed at me

“Put It Back The Way It Was!”

Sorry—I don’t do that one ...

I am just a gate keeper,

“Shams al Din.”

It’s a one way passage.

Through,

But only after

... “You know!” ...
NDT 2005

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

On HEALING THE BODY ... A B C's of "Spiritual" Healing

Healing the Body

James Joyce wrote of one character, "Mr. Duffy lived a short distance from his body."

A B C's of "Spiritual" Healing

a) Meditation practice and its progressive tendency begins with techniques for bringing us to an awareness of our bodies.

b) This is especially important in a culture such as ours, which has neglected physical and instinctual life.

c) In meditation, we can slow down and sit quietly, truly staying with whatever arises.

d) With awareness, we can cultivate a will¬ingness to open to physical experiences without struggling against them, to actually live in our bodies.

e) As we do so, we feel more clearly its pleasures and its pains.

f) Because our acculturation teaches us to avoid or run from pain, we do not know much about it.

g) To heal the body we must study pain.

h) When we bring close attention to our physical pains, we will notice several kinds.

i) We see that sometimes pain arises as we adjust to an unaccustomed sitting posture.

j) Other times, pains arise as signals that we're sick or have a genuine physical problem.

k) These pains call for a direct response and healing action from us.

Now the complicated Stuff

However, most often the kinds of pains we encounter in meditative attention are not indications of physical problems. They are the painful, physical manifestations of our emotional, psychological, and spiritual holdings and contractions. Reich called these pains our muscular armor, the areas of our body that we have tightened over and over in painful situations as a way to protect ourselves from life's inevitable difficulties. Even a healthy person who sits somewhat comfortably to meditate will probably become aware of pains in his or her body. As we sit still, our shoulders, our backs, our jaws, or our necks may hurt. Accumulated knots in the fabric of our body, previously undetected, begin to reveal themselves as we open. As we become conscious of the pain they have held, we may also notice feelings, memories, or images connected spe-cifically to each area of tension.

As we gradually include in our awareness all that we have previously shut out and neglected, our body heals. Learning to work with this opening is part of the art of meditation.

Spiritual Principles for Recovery

Initially, we have to focus on honesty, open-mindedness, willingness, humility, and acceptance.

The practice of the Principle Of Honesty starts with admitting the truth about our life and continues with the practice of honesty on a daily, moment to moment, basis.

 When we say, "I'm in recovery" it may be the first truly honest thing we've said in a long, long time.

 We begin to be able to be honest with ourselves and, consequently with other people eventually.

 Change and recovery doesn’t happen overnight.

 If I've been thinking about acting out on my stuff I need to ask myself; have I shared it with my sponsor, my therapist or my group; have I told anyone else or am I still keeping secrets?

To practice the Principle Of Acceptance we must do more than merely admit that we have problems.

 When we accept our problems for what they are, we accept that they are not the working definition of self.

 When we accept our problems for what they are, we feel a profound inner change that is underscored by a rising sense of hope.

 We also begin to feel a sense of peace.

 We come to terms with our obsessions, compulsions and addictions in our recovery processes, and with this we come to appreciate the meaning and comprehend the realities these eccentricities have in our lives.

 We don't dread a future of recovery practices, of attending meetings, of interpersonal contact, of doing step work; instead, we begin to see recovery as a precious gift, and the work connected with it as no more trouble than other routines of life.