Thursday, November 20, 2008, 3:19 AM
son, like me before him, insisted that he could not possibly meditate.
He even tried to offer me physiological reasons about his inability to
rest his kinesthetic nature (pretty advanced concerns for a 14-year
old). So he was especially surprised to experience an enduring state
of kinesthetic awareness while resting in a meditative pose no one
At my suggestion, my son tried a great way to ease into meditation through the "yoga nidra"
pose where you lay on your back and completely relax with your legs
about shoulder width apart and hands lain at the sides, palms facing
up. In this pose complete relaxation is an understatement. I mean
relaxing the teeth is even a part of the pose. That is simply the
whole point: to relax every muscle and even the internal organs so that
you can take your mind away from the body and imitate the observational
detachment of slumber. The great part is that you don't actually fall
asleep. Somehow even in the most tired state, you will maintain
awareness, although it does appear to onlookers that you are sleeping.
me, like my son, the difficulty in learning to meditate and recite mantras and the
like was in the cerebral aspect of trying to understand what the goal
was. I had a hard time doing something that my mind so vehemently
resisted and, above that, something I didn't even understand. In time,
the answer to my question came only in first taking the risky step of
trying without knowing what I was doing or why.
I knew about the ultimate claims of increased awareness, patience,
mental rest, etc, but I had no frame of reference for any of those
experiences in order to have any appreciation for the claims. Yet and
still, I did have an affinity for the contexts that all urged me to
meditate: yoga, tai chi, Buddhism, eastern medicine, eastern ideology
& culture. So despite my resistance I acquiesced to the desire to
learn more about what all my pursuits uged, meditation. Surprisingly,
in the about
the 3rd attempt something amazing happened.
stood still. In that moment, I felt every nerve ending in my body. I
heard the clack of a squirrel's claws against a tree outdoors (and I
was indoors). I saw the amber glisten of sunlight bend against the
silver edge of a blade of grass through the screen door, in the field
across the street. I heard the rhythm of the wind flying about the
roofs and power lines and in and out of trees. I saw the single thread
of web spin from the tail of a dime sized spider...
I heard the click & clatter of a some rambling about tomorrow's
laundry or if that midnight snack should be a whole serving of ice
cream or a bit of cucumber; and what did I do? Well, of course, like
any good, self-resisting soul I nimbly followed those rambles down
their rabbit holes.
truth be told, my whole shining moment of clarity endured for all of
3-5 seconds; but those 3-5 seconds felt like 3-5 eternities to me.
When I said time stood still, I meant it. I learned in that unexpected
and completely undeserved gift of stillness that meditation &
mantras open our periphery of experience to the impeccable display of
the present. In the practice of stillness, we leave ourselves room to
take ourselves much less seriously. We can see the infinite threads
that connect life and all the cacophony of ingredients that comprise a
single moment of this illusive present tense. In that flurry of
awareness, the mental debate about paper or plastic along with the
majority of our unimpressive pressing thoughts just seem silly.
say we "can" because none of these epiphany episodes are guaranteed to
even the most expert practitioners among us. For the most part, we
spend our meditation simply observing our thoughts in the midst of
being far too busy clicking & clattering. Even that simple
observation, is in itself a gift, though. In those rare moments we are
not immersed in thought and riding those thoughts like a rodeo cowboys,
we may be lucky enough to catch the falling star of watching our brains
you're lucky enough to catch your mind red-handed in the process of
thinking, you're in the process of meditation as well. By observing
ourselves think and not being "in" the thought, we get to
see that we actually
are not our thoughts. Most of us spend our entire lives immersed in
thought and never get to know that our minds are merely tools to be
used at our disposal. By stepping away from the fray of thought
without stopping, judging, or engaging in the thoughts, we can observe
the dynamic of the actual order of the mind. It's best understood by
comparing the observation of our minds in thought to seeing yourself
watching tv in a film or in a mirror. Until then, we could get so lost
in the tv production, we forget that we are not actually in the
M.A.S.H. unit or on the Survivor island.
exactly then is the benefit of witnessing our minds thinking as
spectators rather than as thinkers involved in thinking thoughts? To
see that we can find a peace or center or calm even in the midst of a
storm. We can maintain a place of stillness in the present (versus the
future crisis of that thought's issue or the past glory of that
thought's escape) that gives us a constant even when nothing in this
world remains constant but change. The only other time we become this
centered or still away from the barrage of thought is in our sleep when
we surprisingly have no problem recognizing the thought process as
just how do we unravel the lifelong habit of living "in" the thoughts
that drag us down that insane rabbit hole? We create new habits of
meditation or vibrational mantra to strengthen our ability to center in a
changeless, unlimited, illogical, expansive, formless, fresh space--the
source of our life's unique expression. From that center, from that
neutral & open space, we have the room & stillness to catch
that thought which may spontaneously arise containing the wisdom to
guide us along our path.
Catch the present moment if you can! Meditate!
~ Danielle (dsjconnection)
Monday, November 17, 2008, 3:33 AM
A Word of Encouragement in the Face of an Impossible Struggle:
- In ALL you endure, in ALL you need, in spite of what you see, believe you
have the power to call your greatest vision and deepest faith into your own life.
A beautiful piece of Divinity exists
in all that lives. That precious piece of the Divine Spirit of Life
connects you to the very resources that give you the answers you seek.
Every thought, every wish, every prayer, every call of truth from your heart for the blessings you need is heard, and they each play a part in the unfolding of your life's journey.
- Furthermore, believe that you too are a valuable being worth
the blessings that you are coming to you. Even when you feel far too
small to matter, know that you are living to reveal a significant purpose
in this lifetime. Know that you are a here for a reason and are just a
valuable as even the most abundantly blessed individuals that walk the
- Behave as if you already have the blessings you seek. Find the
simplest blessings you can see in each moment you presently have and
voice your gratitude for ALL that you already have. As you find a
bigger heart of gratitude for the people who presently do lovingly help you, the
food that you do have, the clothing you do have, the work you do
have... ...As you create a bigger and bigger grateful heart for what
little you do have, you will find that little appears to be greater and
greater portions to be grateful for.
- Even now, even as you see an
empty cabinet, be grateful for the crumbs. Be grateful for the pennies,
the wisps of hope, the inklings of joy, the touch of love. Share what
you can, even if it is no more than a smile or a pleasant moment or an
act of kindness.
- I know that this seems to defy what you may physically
need at this exact moment, but in spiritual terms it is PRECISELY what
will carry you to your answered prayers. If you find gratitude for the
invisible abundance you believe you have, you will find the visible
abundance you once believed in. If you share from the empty place you
believe is already full, you will find the fullness you once generously
gave out of. Everything is possible when it comes from a brilliant
heart and a spirit full of compassion.
- Don't just take my word. Look
at history: Helen Keller (born deaf, blind, & mute), Albert
Einstein (considered hopelessly incapable of learning as a child),
Jesus Christ (born & lived throughout his lifetime homeless), Oprah
Winfrey (Born in rural Mississippi to a poor, teenage single mother,
and later raised in an inner city Milwaukee neighborhood, Winfrey was
raped at the age of nine, and at fourteen, gave birth to a son who died
in infancy), Maya Angelou (once a teenage single mother struggling to
raise her son through intense poverty and even prostitution--now a
renowned poet and author who even delivered an inaugural address for
former president Bill Clinton), Thomas Edison ("I have not failed. I've
just found 10,000 ways that won't work."), Harriet Tubman (An escaped
slave herself who eventually made thirteen missions to rescue over
seventy slaves bravely re-entering slave territory multitudes of times
and walking them the thousands of miles to freedom from Maryland to as
far north as Canada.) and many more.
- With Divine greatness in you, all things are
Monday, November 17, 2008, 3:23 AM
To those of you who may have received this journal or a link to the post, please bear with me as I am trying to learn how this journal process works. I hope this reaches you without imposition or inconvenience. I welcome any suggestions or advice on how to better use this journal feature. Additionally, the following post is also included in the group discussion of Being Oneself (administrator: Ty Clement). Feel free to join me there too. Thank You. - Danielle (dsjconnection)
What if We Are Microcosms of a Cosmic & Karmic Connection?
371d36d75e05eda735858f8e467be99cIn response to an injury, in recent months I've revived my study of the body-energy system (qi-gong, chakras, reiki, meditative cleansing,
etc.). Now please don't mistake my interest as a claim that I am any
sort of expert. I simply know my own experiences and learned set of
information and, as a result, readily draw upon those as reference points.
realize that eight central chakras exist in addition to multitudes of
addtional energy points in the body (estimated by some to be as many as
700,000). Through a qi-gong session with a therapist, I learned about
center to be considered a minor heart chakra. For me that additional
(making a total of nine central centers) radiates often and strongly
enough to be quite sensitive to the touch.
also know that the top chakra is a golden or warm center above the head
radiating larger than the lower energies. I learned that this large
golden energy above us is referred to as our archetypal energy center,
a center that contains our character roles or symbolic selves. I like
to think of it as the motor of our karmic path or our karmic vehicle.
light of the recent forum over the status of the ninth planet, now
known as a dwarf planet, Pluto, we now officially have eight planets
and a sun. Ironically, I noticed that we happen to possess a parrallel
number of primary centers in our bodies, eight chakras and a golden
orb-like center at the head.
What if... Here's the fun, philosophical, think expansively, try-a-new-view-on-for-size part: ...
What if our planet earth were no more than an energy center in the body
of another being? What if our solar system were the collective flow of
one being's chakras? What if our universe was comprised of infinite
layers of larger beings ecologically or biologically existing as
components of other larger beings? Wouldn't that make us the
micro-organisms of another greater being? What if we humans actually
are microcosms of a larger being? What if our spiritual connection
(that just happens to be the job of our energy centers, to link our
physical beings to our spiritual realm) reflects or, let's say,
emanates from a macrocosm of a sun and its eight planets? What if we
are each a physical embodiment of an idea or thought by a grander being?
not posing this question for literal investigation. I'm proposing the
notion in order to create a different perspective of just how connected
we could actually be. Suppose each of us were an individual cell or a
pulse of energy in the neurological system of a massive being or a
quark in the cluster of nuclear particles of a universal atom. Suppose
we were each a component of one large being. Then we so easily see how
infantile our human divisions, boundaries, labels, and hierarchies
if we could use the microcosms of our interactions and relationships to
address how life on a macrocosmic level could interact and relate?
What if our vulnerability and openess to connect could translate into
how our own microscopic universe relates? What if we could find cures
for pathological micro-organisms based on the effective methods that we
microcosmic beings connect, create, support, heal, or destroy one
another? What if we could use the interdependence of our ecology to
understand our world, our relationships, and our selves better?
the idea of hypothetically posing some outlandish idea could
potentially create some outlandish solutions in this present reality we
call life. What do you think?
For those of you still reading this far, thanks for humoring me .
- Danielle (dsjconnection)