Author Topic: The New Way of life meditations  (Read 44103 times)

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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #383 on: March 07, 2012, 10:42:25 AM »
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Seeing Your Perfection / Letting Your Light Shine

We are each born into this world with unique gifts. Within us is a glimmer of the divine, a light that can potentially make the world a more beautiful place. But in many, that light lies dormant, snuffed out by fears and feelings of inadequacy. To spark it is to attract attention, face the possibility of rejection or the responsibility of success, and risk being labeled immodest. Yet when we undermine the light by hiding our aptitudes and quashing our dreams, we deny ourselves and others a wealth of experiences. Your abilities are a part of who you are and when you take pride in them, you affirm the love, esteem, and trust with which you view yourself. Moreover, as you express the light within, you grant others permission to do the same, freeing them to explore their own talents.

For some, we are taught to hide our light from the world since childhood. Relatives caution us that the professions associated with our aptitudes are unattainable. Our peers may be envious of our skills and thus overly critical of the activities we instinctively enjoy. And authority figures admonish us to be humble and avoid showing off. But there is a vast chasm that separates those who let their light shine and those who seek only to draw attention to themselves. When you dare to share your light with the world, the beauty and perfection of your soul become clearly visible. You become a whole being-the literal embodiment of your vast potential. Whether you are a wonderful dancer, a first-rate cook, quick with numbers, or a natural negotiator, you'll come to understand that you do the world no favors when you hold yourself back.

If you have hidden your light for so long that it has shrunk to an ember, make a list of everything you do well, however impractical, silly, or seemingly inconsequential. Then ask yourself how you can positively utilize those abilities in your daily life. The gifts you were born with were not granted to you arbitrarily. While you may never discover what impact your light has had on others, you can be certain that when you embrace your talents and share them with others, you will spread illumination in the world.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #382 on: March 07, 2012, 10:37:44 AM »
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Time for Wellness / A Self-Healing Day
 
A beautiful gift to yourself is a day of healing and nourishing just for you. Human beings carry within themselves the seed of healing. Our choices affect us more than we realize, and it is because of this that we tend to place responsibility for our wellness in the hands of others. As beneficial as regular visits to a healer can be, we have the power to heal ourselves at will. When we dedicate a day to the pursuit of wellness, we can relax and renew ourselves in a nourishing and comfortable environment. A sincere desire to open ourselves to the highest realities of our physical and spiritual selves is the key to self-healing so that healing energy can flow into us unimpeded.
 
A self-healing day should address the vital needs of the self as a whole while directing healing energy where it is needed most. Solitude is an important part of the process as is the ability to take refuge in a space that is both beautiful and peaceful. Start your healing day by setting the intention that you are dedicating this time to healing yourself. Flowers, candlelight, incense, and music can guide our focus toward a more tranquil state. For a more intense session, try listening to music through headphones since tuning out can help you tune in. It is up to us to decide what we need to do to cultivate wellness in our lives. For some, it may be time spent in reflection. Others will turn to calming activities that help them remember their purpose, such as journal writing, being in nature, or studying. Our healing may even take a more direct form as we use color, sound, or crystals to balance and ground ourselves.
 
Ultimately, your wholesome intentions transform what might otherwise be a simple day of rest into a day of healing. Grant yourself permission to relax and savor the stillness. If you attune yourself to the calm around you, worldly distractions will be minimized and the unadulterated flow of your consciousness will reestablish itself in the forefront of your mind. The needs of the body, the heart, and the soul will then be revealed to you, empowering you to tap into the essential healing energy of the universe. The mechanism you use to channel this energy will be dependent on your shifting requirements, so each day of healing you enjoy will be unique. All will replenish you, however, allowing you to recreate yourself in a perfect image of health


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #381 on: March 07, 2012, 10:33:33 AM »
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Layers of Feeling / Coping with Passive Aggression
 
Passive aggression is most often wielded by those who feel powerless and want to avoid their own true feelings. Many people are taught from a young age to suppress feelings commonly regarded as negative, such as anger, resentment, fear, and sorrow. Those who cannot or will not express these emotions tend to engage in passive-aggressive behaviors that provide them with a means of redirecting their feelings. Passive aggression can take many forms: People who feel guilty saying “no” may continually break their promises because they couldn’t say no when they meant it. Others will substitute snide praise for a slur to distance themselves from the intense emotions they feel. More often than not, such behavior is a cry for help uttered by those in need of compassion and gentle guidance.
 
When we recognize passive-aggressive patterns in the behavior of others, we should never allow ourselves to be drawn into a struggle for power. Passive aggression is most often wielded by those who feel powerless in the face of what they perceive as negative emotions because they hope to avoid confronting their true feelings. They feel they are in control because they do not display overt emotion and often cannot understand how they have alienated their peers. If someone close to us shows signs of frustration or annoyance but claims nothing is amiss, we can point out that their tone of voice or gestures are communicating a different message and invite them to confide in us. When we feel slighted by a backhanded compliment, it is important that we calmly explain how the jibe made us feel and why. And when an individual continually breaks their promises, we can help them understand that they are free to say no if they are unwilling to be of service.
 
As you learn to detect passive aggression, you may be surprised to see a hint of it in yourself. Coping with the natural human tendency to veil intense emotions can be as simple as reminding yourself that expressing your true feelings is healthy. The emotions typically regarded as negative will frequently be those that inspire you to change yourself and your life for the better, whereas passive-aggressive behavior is a means of avoiding change. When you deal constructively with your feelings, you can put them behind you and move forward unencumbered by unexplored emotion.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #380 on: March 07, 2012, 10:28:57 AM »
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Pausing To Drink/Beauty Day

Sometimes we go through whole days without really tuning in to the beauty of nature that surrounds us. We have a habit of seeing it without really taking it in, yet once we begin to notice it we treat ourselves to an exquisite realm of subtle, complex scents, miraculous forms, and ethereal light. The natural world enriches our entire being through the vehicles of our senses. When we are low, nature lifts our spirits. When we are tired, it rejuvenates us-if we pause long enough to drink from its beauty. If you have fallen out of the practice of taking time to observe the light as it filters through the leaves of a tree, or the concentric rings a raindrop makes as it plops into a puddle, you can retune yourself by dedicating a day to noticing the beauty in nature.

On this day, one possibility is to rise early enough to see the sunrise. Watching the sky change colors and the world emerge from darkness is an experience that will influence the whole rest of your day in ways that words cannot describe. Or simply observe the quality of the morning light as it infuses the world with its particular pale golden beauty. You may let the light play on your own hand, remembering that you are also part of the natural world. Let your intuition guide you to the elements of nature that call to you throughout the day, such as the sound of the wind as it shakes and sways a tree or the feeling of snowflakes landing on your warm eyelids and cheeks.

After you devote one day to opening your eyes more fully to the beauty of nature, you may want to make this part of your daily routine. Each day drink from the beauty all around you, and allow it to rejuvenate your entire being. All you have to do is pause, for just one minute, and really take it in, remembering to thank Mother Nature for her beauty.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #379 on: March 03, 2012, 03:28:06 PM »
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Evolving From Within / Changing Yourself First
 
The world calls out for improvement and, more often than not, we are ready and willing to offer advice or admonishments. But each of us possesses the power to effect a positive shift in energy in ourselves and in those around us. Just as purification of the soul leads to purification of the world, change within leads to change without. Conflicts can be resolved without words. The key is changing yourself and freeing your mind. When someone or something bothers you, it helps to begin by asking yourself if you, too, possess that negative quality or if you're allowing yourself to be overly affected by it. You only have control over yourself, but your influence is farther reaching than you may realize. A positive change on your part often leads to positive change around you.
 
This passive inspiration of change not only stems from your example to others. You may have changed your behavior or simply decided to adopt a change in perspective. But in doing so, you have set into motion a series of positive consequences that, bring balance. The more we grow in virtue and the more centered we become, the more we perceive virtue and centeredness and the more we project it outward. As we act in ways beneficial to ourselves and others, so do we inspire others into similar action. And, when we have achieved control over our minds and souls, we cannot be negatively affected by anything outside of ourselves. When we wish others to change, criticism and condemnation often fail. Recognizing that none of us are perfect and that we all need to change can be the best way of overcoming conflict.
 
In Aikido it is said, "Change yourself first, before looking to change your opponent, and in the process, you might find that your opponent has changed himself." Actions, good thoughts, and positive energy speak louder than judgmental words and are the most powerful tools you can use when working toward a better world.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #378 on: March 03, 2012, 03:23:44 PM »
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Let Yourself Be Carried / The Flow of the Universe
 
The flow of the universe moves through everything. It is in the rocks that form, get pounded into dust, and are blown away. It is in the blossoming of a flower born from a seed planted in the spring. The growth cycle that every human being goes through is part of this natural flow, which is also the current that takes us down life’s paths. When we move with it rather than resisting it, we are riding on the universal wave that allows us to flow with life.
 
Many people live struggling against this current. They try to use force or resistance to will their lives into happening in the way they think it should. Others move with it like a sailor using the wind, trusting that the universe is taking them exactly where they need to be at all times. This flow is accessible to everyone because it travels through and around us. We are always riding it—it is just a matter of whether we are willing to go with it or we resist it. Choosing to go with the flow is often a matter of relinquishing the notion that we need to be in control at all times.
 
The flow is always transporting you where you need to go. It is merely a question of deciding whether you plan on accepting the ride or having it take you there with your feet dragging. Learning to step into it can help you feel a connection to a force that is greater than you and is always there to support you. The decision to go with the flow takes courage because you are surrendering the belief that you need to do everything by yourself. Riding the flow of the universe can be effortless, exhilarating, and unlike anything you ever expected. When you are receptive to being in it, you open yourself to possibilities that exist beyond the grasp of your control.
 
As a child, you were naturally swept by the flow. Tears of sadness falling down your face could just as quickly turn to tears of laughter. The mere tiniest wave carrying you forward off the shores of the ocean could transport you into peals of delight.
 
Our souls feel good when we go with the flow of the universe. All we have to do is make the choice to ride its currents.



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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #377 on: March 01, 2012, 08:18:37 PM »
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No Going Back / Every Step is Forward
 
Periods of intense forward movement often give way to periods of what seems like stagnation. There are times when we feel that we are spinning our wheels in the mud in terms of our spiritual progress. This can be especially true following a period of major growth in which we feel as if we've gained a lot of ground. In fact, this is the way growth goes—periods of intense forward movement give way to periods of what seems like stagnation. In those moments when we feel discouraged, it's helpful to remember that we don’t ever really go backward. It may be that we are at a standstill because there is a new obstacle in our paths, or a new layer to get through, but the hard work we have done cannot be undone.
 
Every step on the path is meaningful, and even one that seems to take us backward is a forward step in the sense that it is what we must do to move to the next level. In addition, an intense growth spurt requires that we rest for a time in order to fully integrate the new energies that have been liberated by our hard work. When we feel we are not making progress, we can encourage ourselves to take a moment to rest. We can meditate more, feed ourselves well, and get extra sleep. Before we know it, we will be spurred on to work toward the next level of our development, and this rest will make sense then as something we needed in order to continue.
 
Once the sun rises, it doesn't go backward but instead follows its path in one direction. It may appear to stand still for a moment in time, or to move more slowly at some point or another, but really it is steadily moving forward on its path. We are the same way, and once we have moved through something we can never really go back. We may be resting or revisiting issues that seem old, and it's natural to feel stuck, but in truth we are always taking the next important step forward on our path.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #376 on: March 01, 2012, 08:15:12 PM »
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A Concrete Dream / Goals
 
Our desires act as fuel, propelling us toward new horizons. Without something to strive for, we stagnate and become stuck in ruts of our own making because we are unsure of what to do next. Goals are the dreams that we are willing to work for. When we set goals, we take responsibility for our lives and choose to wholeheartedly devote ourselves to our aspirations. Even if we only take the smallest steps toward achieving our ambitions, it is vital that we actively pursue our goals rather than just daydreaming about them. Having goals makes us feel good because it adds a sense of purpose and direction to our lives.
 
When you endeavor to achieve clear and quantifiable goals, your choices and actions take on new significance. Consciously creating your goals can help ensure that the success you seek is attainable and serves you. Your plan must be conceivable, tangible, and measurable. If you cannot visualize your goal in great detail or believe that you can realize them, you may find it difficult to commit to your goals and take the necessary steps to achieve them. Make sure that your goals have the potential to be emotionally satisfying. You may even want to write them down. Putting your goals into words can keep your intention fresh in your mind and remind you of your purpose. As you make progress toward realizing your goals, give yourself a reward each time you take a step forward so that you have the incentive to keep going. If you find yourself stuck in a rut, examine ways in which you can revise your strategy so that your plan can work.
 
In creating goals, you create your future by outlining your destiny. When you choose your goals using your head and heart, you take the first step in manifesting what you want. You grant your own wishes every time you achieve another goal.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #375 on: March 01, 2012, 08:08:25 PM »
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Regret / The Weight of the Past
 
Holding onto regret is like dragging the weight of the past with us everywhere we go. It drains our energy, leaving less available for life in the present because we are constantly feeding an old issue. This attachment can cause illness the same way watering a dead plant creates decay. We know that something new and beautiful can grow in its place if we only prepare the soil and plant the right seeds. We also know that we create our lives from our thoughts, so dwelling on the past may actually recreate a situation in our lives where we are forced to make the choice again and again. We can choose to move on right now by applying what we have learned to the present and perhaps even sharing with others, transforming the energy into something that is constructive and creative for ourselves and others.
 
Forgiveness is the soothing balm that can heal regret. In meditation, we can imagine discussing the issue with the self of our past and offering our forgiveness for the choice. In return, we can ask for our selves’ forgiveness for keeping them locked in that space of judgment for so long. We may also want to ask forgiveness from anyone else who may have been affected and perhaps offer our forgiveness. By replaying the event in our minds, we can choose a new ending using all that we now know. Imagine that you have actually gone back into the past and made this change, and then say goodbye to it. Release your former self with a hug and bring the forgiveness and love back with you to the present. Since we are usually our harshest critics, it is amazing how powerfully healing it can be to offer ourselves love.
 
Keeping our minds and our energy fully in the present allows us to fuel our physical and emotional healing and well-being today. This action frees our energy to create the dreams we dream for the future. By taking responsibility and action in the present, we can release our hold on the past.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #374 on: February 29, 2012, 03:37:58 PM »
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Bringing Out The Best / Checks And Balances
 
Most of us have probably come across the universal wisdom that the people who irritate us the most are expressing qualities that we ourselves have. This is why family members can be so vexing for so many of us—we see ourselves in them, and vice versa. This isn’t always true, of course, but when it is, it’s a real opportunity for growth if we can acknowledge it, because it is infinitely easier to change ourselves than it is to try to change another person, which is never a good idea. For example, if we have a coworker who engages in some kind of negative behavior, like complaining or trying to control everything, we can look and see if we ourselves carry those traits.
 
We may have to look to other situations in our lives to see it, because we behave differently in different environments. Perhaps we don’t complain at work, because our coworker overdoes it, but maybe we do it with our friends. Maybe we aren’t controlling at the office, but we’re used to being in control at home, and this is why we feel so irritated not to be in control at work. Even if we look and find that we are not engaging in the same behavior that we see as negative in others, we can still learn from what we are seeing in this person. The truth is, human nature is universal, and we share many of the same tendencies. What we see in others can always help us to understand ourselves more deeply.
 
Having the ability to see something in another person, and automatically bring this observation back to ourselves, is like having a built-in system of checks and balances that enables us to be continually engaged in self-exploration and behavior change. When we see behavior we don’t like, we can make a concerted effort to weed it out of ourselves, and when we see behavior we do like, we can let it inspire us to engage in imitation. Through this process, we read our environment and let it influence us to bring out the best in ourselves.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #373 on: February 29, 2012, 12:40:17 AM »
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A Matter Of Priorities / Letting Go Of The Little Stuff
 
We experience numerous disappointments each and every day. Our expectations go unmet, our plans are blocked by circumstance, our wishes go unfulfilled, and we discover that our lives are subject to a myriad of forces beyond our conscious control. In some cases, our response is powerful because we must invest ourselves and our resources to overcome genuine hardship. In others, our reactions are far more passionate than our circumstances likely warrant. The tension that permeates our bodies and minds when we are late for an event, interrupted at work, or sitting in traffic is not inappropriate, but it can interfere with our well-being in profound ways. When we stop worrying about relatively unimportant matters, we can be at peace and devote so much more of ourselves to what is truly important.
 
The small frustrations and irritations wield such power over us because they rob us of the illusion of control. But every problem is a potential teacher—a confusing situation is an opportunity to practice mindfulness, and difficult people provide us with opportunities to display compassion. There is a natural human tendency to invest copious amounts of emotional energy in minor dilemmas and frustrations in order to avoid confronting those more complex issues that are largely outside the realm of our control. The intensity of our response provides us with a temporary sense of personal power that helps us cope with challenges that might otherwise overwhelm us. But it is only when we let the little stuff go that we discover that the big stuff is not really so devastating after all.
 
In the stress of a singularly tense incident, differentiating between an inconsequential annoyance and a legitimate challenge can seem a monumental task. Ask yourself whether the emotions you are feeling will be as vivid in a year, a day, or even an hour. As focused as you are on this moment in time, your reward for letting go of your emotional investment may be the very happiness and harmony of being whose loss you are lamenting. Needless aggravation is seldom worth the cost it exacts. You cannot distance yourself from life's inconsistencies, irritations, and upheavals, but you can relinquish your desire for perfect order and gain peace of mind in the process.


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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #372 on: February 28, 2012, 11:41:39 AM »
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Tied in Knots / The Journey of Release
 
When we become overwhelmed and things are not going as planned, it is natural to hold tighter to our goals and try to force things to go our way. In the process, we tie ourselves in knots, tensing our shoulders, jaws, and muscles throughout our bodies. Our mind tells us that this is how to get a firmer grip on a situation that feels out of control, but as we create knots in our bodies we are blocking the flow of our energy, exhausting ourselves by exerting more effort yet accomplishing less. At these times, though it may seem counterintuitive, our higher selves know it’s better to let go.
 
This may not be quite as easy as it sounds. After the relief of our first decision to release, if we allow questions about how to get everything done to start again, the knots will be back before we know it. So we need to be aware that this is a process to breathe through. First, we need to let go of our idea of what the perfect outcome should be, and allow that the intelligence that drives the universe knows better than we do how everything fits together for the highest good. Then we might have to release our imagined consequences and realize that, in most cases, the worst that could happen really isn’t that bad. We may need to remember how to relax, first by taking deep breaths, then by meditating, and then perhaps seeking help from a loved one, massage therapist, or energy healer to clear the underlying knots.
 
We can ease our mental stress by prioritizing what we truly want to accomplish, and then delegating the rest to someone who has more enthusiasm for those things. When we relax and let life’s energy flow through our minds, bodies, spirits, and lives, we will find that we can accomplish more with less effort and feel good doing it. We don’t have to tie ourselves in knots. Instead, we can let the ribbons of our energy unfurl to gracefully direct us through life’s abundant flow.



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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #371 on: February 23, 2012, 10:41:26 AM »
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Stronger than You Know / Getting Ourselves Worked Up
 
Often we get anxiety for no reason as we are almost always stronger and more capable than we believe ourselves to be. Our capacity to cope successfully with life's challenges far outstrips our capacity to feel nervousness. Yet in the weeks, days, and hours leading up to an event that we believe will test our limits, we can become nervous. While we may have previously regarded ourselves as equal to the trials that lie ahead, we reach a point at which they near and our anxiety begins to mount. We then become increasingly worked up, until the moment of truth arrives and we discover that our worry was all for nothing. We are almost always stronger and more capable than we believe ourselves to be. But anxiety is not rational in nature, which means that in most cases we cannot work through it using logic as our only tool. Reason can help us recognize the relative futility of unwarranted worry but, more often than not, we will find more comfort in patterns of thought and activity that redirect our attention to practical or engaging matters.
 
Most of us find it remarkably difficult to focus on two distinct thoughts or emotions at once, and we can use this natural human limitation to our advantage when trying to stay centered in the period leading up to a potentially tricky experience. When we concentrate on something unrelated to our worry—such as deep breathing, visualizations of success, pleasurable pursuits, or exercise—anxiety dissipates naturally. Meditation is also a useful coping mechanism as it provides us with a means to ground ourselves in the moment. Our guides can aid us by providing us with a focal point wholly outside of our own sphere.
 
The intense emotional flare-up you experience just before you are set to challenge yourself is often a mixture of both excitement and fear. When you take steps to eliminate the fear, you can more fully enjoy the excitement. Though you may find it difficult to avoid getting worked up, your awareness of the forces acting on your feelings will help you return to your center and accept that few hurdles you will face will be as high as they at first appear.



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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #370 on: February 23, 2012, 10:37:19 AM »
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Five Minutes to Happiness / A Reason to Smile
 
Devoting time each day for happiness will change your day and change your brain chemistry. It can be so easy to get caught up in the rigors of modern life that we tend to forget that happiness need not come with stipulations. Happiness becomes something we must schedule and strive for—a hard-won emotion—and then only when we have no worries to occupy our thoughts. In reality, overwhelming joy is not the exclusive province of those with unlimited time and no troubles to speak of. Many of the happiest people on earth are also those coping with the most serious challenges. They have learned to make time for those simple yet superb pleasures that can be enjoyed quickly and easily. Cultivating a happy heart takes no more than five minutes. The resultant delight will be neither complex nor complicated, but it will be profound and will serve as a reminder that there is always a reason to smile.
 
So much that is ecstasy-inducing can be accomplished in five minutes. Alone, we can enjoy an aromatic cup of our favorite tea, take a stroll through the garden we have created, write about the day's events in a journal, doodle while daydreaming, or breathe deeply while we listen to the silence around us. In the company of a good friend or treasured relative, we can share a few silly jokes, enjoy a waltz around the room, play a fast-paced hand of cards, or reconnect through lighthearted conversation. The key is to first identify what makes us dizzyingly happy. If we do only what we believe should bring us contentment, our five minutes will not be particularly satisfying. When we allow ourselves the freedom to do whatever brings us pleasure, five minutes out of 14 wakeful hours can brighten our lives immeasurably.
 
It is often when we have the least free time or energy to devote to joy that we need to unwind and enjoy ourselves the most. Making happiness a priority will help you find five minutes every day to indulge in the things that inspire elation within you. Eventually, your happiness breaks will become an established part of your routine. If you start by pursuing activities you already enjoy and then gradually think up new and different ways to fill your daily five minutes of happiness, you will never be without something to smile about.



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Offline Ron

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Re: The New Way of life meditations
« Reply #369 on: February 23, 2012, 10:29:19 AM »
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Below the Surface / Finding Deep Strength
 
When we look back on our lives we see that we have survived many trials and often to our own amazement. We have all faced moments in our lives when the pressure mounts beyond what we feel we can handle, and we find ourselves thinking that we do not have the strength to carry on. Sometimes we have just gotten through a major obstacle or illness only to find another one waiting for us the moment we finally catch our breath. Sometimes we endure one loss after another, wondering when we will get a break from life’s travails. It does not seem fair or right that life should demand more of us when we feel we have given all we can, but sometimes this is the way life works.
 
When we look back on our lives, we see that we have survived many trials and surmounted many obstacles, often to our own amazement. In each of those instances, we had to break through our ideas about how much we can handle and go deeper into our hidden reserves. The thought that we do not have the strength to handle what is before us can be likened to the hard surface of a frozen lake. It appears to be an impenetrable fact, but when we break through it, we find that a deep well of energy and inspiration was trapped beneath that icy barrier the whole time. Sometimes we break through by cutting a hole into our resistance with our willpower, and sometimes we melt the ice with compassion for our predicament and ourselves. Either way, each time we break through, we reach a new understanding of the strength we store within ourselves.
 
When we find ourselves up against that frozen barrier of thinking we cannot handle our situation, we may find that the kindest choice is to love ourselves and our resistance too. We can simply accept that we are overwhelmed, exhausted, and stretched, and we can offer ourselves loving kindness and compassion. If we can extend to ourselves the unconditional warmth of a mother’s love, before we know it, the ice will begin to break.


                                                          The New Way of Life - All Rights Reserved 2004-09
                                                 No portion of this site can be reprinted without express permission