SEEING

I saw beauty and magnificence today, with a side of inspiration. As I walked through my neighborhood, I smelled grass, trees, and flowers. I felt peace, gratitude, and, most significantly, awe.  I got an energy infusion from the warm spring sun and air. I heard children laughing and windchimes playing harmonies across backyard fences. I felt God’s presence and my own. My mind slowed long enough for the rest of me to catch up.

During my walk, the usual static was replaced with the quiet certainty of knowing I was exactly where I was supposed to be, doing what I was supposed to do. I was happy without trying to be happy. I felt joy without praying to be joyful or undertaking a self-improvement checklist that promised joy upon completion.

We strive to be rational. We plan our futures. We plan to be happy tomorrow. But, happiness is only possible in what Richard Rohr calls The Naked Now. Buddhists call it the present moment and mindfulness.

We spend so much time trying to get God to love us! But, if we show up for ourselves just for this moment, we can forget trying to be perfect, productive, and accomplished long enough to let God love us and really feel it. That’s a game changer!

SELF- AWARENESS SUCKS

 

 

grasshopper on top of world Anything that is both absolutely essential and inherently difficult, by definition, sucks. Mindfulness, the most important tool to emotional and spiritual healing, growth and wellness, can be a graduate level S&M course from which one never graduates. So why bother? The pay off is worth it. Of course, to find out what that is you have to read all the way through to the end 🙂 But, first a few reasons why it really sucks:

 

1) Self- awareness sucks because I can’t be a pernicious pain in the ass provoking mass flight from friends and family, and then blame said flight on said friends and family. Unfortunately, self awareness requires an hourly examination of my true motivations and an assessment of whether I am being truly loving to my fellow man or fake- loving to get them to behave in a way that makes me more comfortable or directly benefits me in some way.

 

2) Self- awareness sucks because I can’t blame disappointments, hurts and failures on

“ my enemies”. I can no longer do this because I know my true enemies are my thoughts. Fear, guilt, self- condemnation, arrogance and insecurity are the line-up that will cause me to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory before any living person can truly have power over me. It sucks because I have to ask myself, does my attitude match the facts? I should have been born centuries ago during the time of the Huns, because I am always girding my loins in preparation for Barbarians at the Gate, most of whom never arrive except when I invite them in, which leads me to number 3.

 

3) I have to ask myself “ what would I do if I weren’t afraid?” about every 60 seconds, because I am aware of how fear is the prism through which I often choose to view my world. It is my fall- back position. Self- awareness requires me to act the opposite of what my mind is telling me to do, which is “ batten down the hatches!”

4) Self- awareness sucks because it isn’t flat. It’s a multi- level high rise, and it’s about progress not perfection. If I am self- aware, I can no longer hide behind technical truthiness.

I can have awareness of something in my mind, and it may be the literal truth. From my mind, awareness then travels to my heart. This is a deeper level of truth for me. This is where denial begins to fall away and those hurts from way back when begin to surface. It is painful, but it passes to the next level after the tears have been shed or the anger has flared, and it reveals a still deeper level of truth—the emotional truth.

I never felt anger until I finally got to this level and, as a consequence, I had no idea what a boundary was. I was trampled and resentful and had no idea why. Once I tended these truths begging for my attention, I discovered boundaries, and stopped being a professional doormat.

It’s at this point that my higher power shows up because I’m hurting and I ask for help. A more accurate statement would be I’m suddenly aware of his presence, because I start looking for it.

Then, my awareness reaches the cellular level and I am sitting atop the high rise. Fear is no longer present. I am not attached to an outcome, the past or the future, and therefore, my vision is unimpeded.

This is the only point at which I literally hear the deep and unabashed truth coming out of my own mouth. In the long run, it is always kinder.

 

So, what on earth is worth all of this self- vigilance, you might ask?

Here is the big payoff:

 

I don’t need to blame God for ignoring me because I am aware that I have ignored him, and that he has always been there. I know that he is not too busy to help me: I’ve been too busy to ask, and I know I can rectify that oversight at any time. I don’t have to lose my peace or obsess about if I am in his will because I know that so long as I am in the presence of my loving creator, I cannot really avoid being where he wants me to be.

I get the true humility that comes from knowing the whole truth about myself and speaking it.

I get courage, if not the freedom from fear.

I get success, fruitful relationships and spiritual transformation.

I get to finally close the door on the past, and let happiness and blessings happen, instead of vigilantly watching for them, with firmly clenched fists.

I get true abundance, as my eyes are opened to miracles and blessings falling on me like rain.

 

“ My God with his loving kindness, shall come to meet me at every corner.”

Psalms 59:10.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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