Someone who had just turned to spiritual practices and tried to be openhearted and loving to everyone, suddenly felt that he was making himself too vulnerable. He said it
felt like wearing a sign that said “Do
to me whatever you want, I have to accept it”.
This is the conditioning we have received “Give
them an inch and they’ll take a mile”. We have this idea that if we’re coming from a compassionate place, we can only be nice and say yes to everything.
But being compassionate is before anything, being compassionate and loyal to ourselves.
We have to respect everybody but it doesn’t mean that we have to like them, and certainly not abide by their rules if they are detrimental to us. Sometimes the most compassionate response might be saying no, and setting limits.
Practicing loving-kindness doesn’t mean that you are no longer discerning or proactive, but it means that you can change the way you look at someone's unskillful behavior with compassion instead of fear and contempt.
We can remember that all human beings want to be happy, including people who aren’t doing a very good job of it.
Communication is the key to living a fulfilling life. It connects us with others and with ourselves.
Each one of us was born with a natural way of receiving inspirations and insights and then of sharing them with others. These are our inner and outer communication systems.
There are four Avenues of Communication.
The way we communicate with ourselves and with others is determined by something most of us don’t normally associate with communication.
Below the surface, the real factors that determine how we communicate are the four
spiritual gifts. Everyone of us is born with these gifts and the gifts that are most fully developed within us even shape our personality. In essence we can think of the four gifts as modes of expression that help us navigate the world.
At the workshop on May 3rd I will share how we can discover what our primary gift is and how it can open up a whole new world for us.
I was at a luncheon this week with some friends who attend my meditation sessions and other ladies I was meeting for the first time. When the subject of practicing meditation was brought up, one of the ladies told me that she was far too busy to do it, and she didn't even believe in God.
To become a meditator we do not need to believe in God or give up a productive life.
The word God is so misused by so many people who have never glimpsed the realm of the sacred. What they are talking about is of a mental image they have created, and for them God is someone outside of themselves. All that it takes to meditate is the desire to explore the inner and vast dimension of ourselves and in doing so becoming free of unnecessary suffering. We have learned to identify completely with our mind, our emotions, our life situation, and we have neglected our soul. Patanjali said that "We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, but spiritual beings having a human experience”.
This life, this time on earth was given to us to become what we were created to be. Happy, peaceful, enlightened beings.
Easter and Passover are very important celebrations in the Christian and Jewish traditions. It also mark the end of winter, and the transition to springtime. Spring comes forth in a rush of life, promise, hope and possibility. Consequently springtime in your soul is a wonderful time to undertake some new adventure, some new project, or to make some important change in your life. When we undertake this when it is springtime in our soul, then the rythm, the energy, and the hidden light of our soul works with us. We can make difficult transitions very naturally in an unforced and spontanious way. Very often in difficult work projects, there is a secret shape waiting to emerge. Meister Ekhart speaks beautifully about the way one should be toward what one does. If you work with a creative and kind eye, you will bring forth beauty . If you can learn to love what you do, and be present and give your full respect and attention in what you are doing,this is what bring transformation. You might not like at the beginning what you have to do but to do it with the purpose of bringing the deeper part of your soul to it. May it be cleaning your house, taking children to school or repairing a broken object, when we do something with a loving heart, then we are always able to bring beauty in our life.
Here is an extract of a prayer from the great author and Poet John O'Donohue from his book Anam Cara
May your work never weary you,
May it release within you wellsprings of refreshment,inspiration, and excitement.
May you be present in what you do.
I hope to receive your comments or questions, because we are all in turn teachers and students to each other.
I wish you all a bless week
The idea of giving a workshop was simply to give more people a way to develop a practice in meditation. Meditation is for anyone who wants to improve the quality of their life. It is so pragmatic, and if you do it on a regular basis you get results just like doing regular physical exercises. You do not need any pre-requisite or religious beliefs, if you can breathe you can meditate.
Sometimes people have the impression that meditators have to renounce their worldly goals, opinions and shun having fun. On the contrary your presence acquires a quality that makes everything, yes everything more enjoyable.