Friday, December 30, 2011

Shifting Focus

The weather so far has been fairly stable up in these mountains. It is a much gentler winter so far than last year. I have taken full advantage of it and continue my frequent walks up the holler a ways. Winter has it's own unique beauty that I never really appreciated before.

On the surface it looks bleaker, duller than in spring and summer and fall. But wait, Winter is it's own season. Not just a holding period until the other seasons come around again. It is Winter, a special type of "resting" period for the plants, trees and grass. So they can prepare for the renewal. They are sleeping. I have tracked the progression of cycles of the plant life and it was so amazing to me. How could this wondrous phenomena escaped me for so many years. The practical perfection of it is stunning.

The last few days of my walks I have noticed my attention is pulled to the little creek that runs down the mountain. Traveling through the foothills all the way to the "bottom" where it continues between my neighbor's house and mine, under the road and beyond. The sound of it is almost hypnotic to my ears. I seem to catch myself just standing and gazing into the streaming water and listening with a deep fascination.

Everyday I walk along side and watch the water flowing. I notice branches and leaves along the sides..places where it is dammed up a bit with large rocks and large limbs. In that span of time while I walk beside the creek, I am aware of a magical feeling. Everything else slides away from my mind..only the flow of the water is there.

Today on my walk; before I went over the bridge, I grabbed a rake out of the outbuilding where my Dad stored a few tools. I walked to the point where the creek runs through the foothills and began raking out tall grasses, dried out and dead plants, small limbs and rocks. I only meant to spend a bit of time. I became lost in it. It was so satisfying to me. My dog, Evie, finally began getting restless to get back home. I noticed it was starting to get dark. I trudged home muddy, kind of wet and most of all with a very happy feeling that I cannot explain.

As I made my way down the creek I felt joy at the sound and sight of the renewed flow of water rushing past. It sounded louder and appeared to have more volume after my labors.

I can't wait to go back out tomorrow.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Reviewing Life Choices

A friend of mine, from the place I used to live, asked me a question. And that question kind of triggered a much needed review of an important idea that I try always to be mindful of..but sometimes am not.

My friend asked me what his future held. While I repeated the same thing I tell him all the time when he asks this, it occurred to me that I would be thankful for his question because it caused me to reopen my awareness to a basic truth of mine which is..my life is shaped by the choices I make. Every choice, large and small, every second, minute, hour and day. Every choice is a step towards a direction I will be following in my life.

It brought it back to my full attention that I needed to renew my focus on this in order to observe and be aware of what I was thinking and what I was choosing. It isn't a few large decisions that shape our life as much as the tiny ones we make a thousand times a day.

I must admit, my choices have not all been good ones the last week. Many have but a few have not. By seeing this I could begin immediately to alter my direction. Being careful not to berate myself but to gently guide myself ( after all I am my own best friend) to choose things that were better for my self and my life.


And so I told my friend (once again) that I was no fortune teller. Not that there is anything wrong with that..it's just not one of my gifts. And I explained to him about my truth about how choices shape our lives and direction. It didn't go over to well. I am not sure why.

Is it better to think we are helplessly swept by the wind of life or is it better to know we have ways of shaping our own personal reality? I prefer the latter.

I think it all goes back to energy. Doesn't everything? I believe that when I am observing and being aware of my thought patterns, choices I make every second..it changes the vibrational pattern..literally raising the vibration of my conscious thought.

Raising the level of vibration of my energy field is a very important part of my spiritual work.
It appears to have the same affect on my thought patterns. It seems to have a similar affect as when I deliberately focus on circulating my auric energy. My energy vibrates at a higher rate.

In my world..raising the vibrational level of my energy is everything. In thought and practice.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve

It is Christmas Eve and I am hanging right in there. In fact, many things I truly enjoyed this holiday season so far. I have wrapped the presents I got for my partner and my daughter. My son's I sent out earlier in the mail.

I baked all the cookies I am going to. Yesterday I went to the store and shopped for Christmas dinner. I enjoyed it a lot. The place was packed. I went to the local Walmart because the selection of things and brands I like are more accessible and affordable in Walmart. (I never shopped at Walmart before I moved..but that is another blog for another day.)

The place was packed with Christmas shoppers and people like me getting things for Christmas dinner. I enjoyed it more than I thought. As I went through the aisles I was so grateful for this time and place I was in that I was able to go Christmas dinner shopping.

This time of year always triggers really uncomfortable feelings in me. This year is a little different. I have had some painful feelings..painful memories come up..but also some happy ones. This year will make peaceful memories for me.

I am grateful for all of the blessings in my life and there are so many. This last year was an unimaginable gift.

I have also spent a lot of time contemplating the Three Magi and of course, the birth of Jesus.
Lately I been thinking about how Joseph must have felt. You know his friends were snickering behind his back when he married an already pregnant Mary. I mean Mary and Joseph both knew the baby was not his..and I am sure everyone else did too.

Something in his heart..in his soul..opened up and his Guidance told him to marry her and love she and the child. Regardless of how it looked or what his peers thought. To do the correct thing even though it looks totally wrong to everyone else. That is the big lesson for me. To discern strongly enough to know the correct choice to make.

And in my mind's eye I can see the Magi, traveling through mountains and deserts to find the One that the star led them to. Did they know each other or did they meet up at a specific point by chance and decide to team up? Were they from the same "Sect" of Priesthood or whatever the name for their persuasion was.


Today I am going to start Christmas dinner. Bake the sweet potatoes, make the slaw, cut up the apples and make spiced apples. I will thaw the shrimp for the shrimp and grits.

tomorrow I will cook the ham, make the sweet potatoe casserole, shrimp and grits, green beans and sweet cornbread.

I am also going to play on farmville. For some reason I enjoyed decorating my little farm. Crazy..but hey..It works. This is going smoother for me than I ever dreamed. I have not just
endured it, I have enjoyed much of it. Later today I will light the Christmas tree up and put on my favorite Carols. I may even light a fire in the fireplace. It's Christmas!


"And so I am offering this simple phrase, to kids from one to ninety two, although it's been said many times and many ways, Merry Christmas to you!"

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Celebration and the Struggle of the Holidays

It is painful for me to write about this but I need to address it. The Holiday Season is not necessarily a happy time for everyone. I am sorry to say that I am one of these people. I attempted to explain to a friend of mine that deep down I love this season but on the surface I don't.

I know that is such a paradox but it is the truest way I can explain it. My heart opens to it yet my ego/emotions cringe, feel sad, resentful, self pitying etc...all the crap that I don't like to feel. But I do feel it and I cannot and will not deny it or repress it.


My first step is to express honest and authentic gratitude for the time and space this year to process it. I haven't had the gift of this for many many years. My second step is to acknowledge how I feel and acknowledge it. The third step is to realize I am feeling uncomfortable emotions about something in me that is triggered by this time of year...Not by this time of year. And unfortunately, my painful discomfort is triggered by my preconditioned expectations of this season, not about anything bad that has affected me.

And this approach has helped me a lot. I actually enjoyed putting up my Christmas tree and decorating a bit around the house. I only put out things I liked while thinking about what this time of the year means to me. I have consciously strived to focus on what I like about this time of year, not how I do not live up to what I perceive as expectations of this season. Along with that awful feeling of not being able to keep up with everyone else's perfect Christmas. I mean, what is that anyway? It is some strange fixation in my head. That's all it is. That is my own limitation and I am taking steps to break myself free from the bonds of this.


So far I am doing very well. Last night, my partner and I watched Rudolph the Rednosed Reindeer and Mr Magoo's Christmas Carol. I loved it! We had a picnic in the living room of smoked salmon and cream cheese and some Christmas cookies. I turned out all the lights except the Christmas tree and it was so much fun.

I am contemplating not only the Yuletide but the birth of Jesus (whether it actually happened this time of year or not) and The Three Magi. My daughter gave me a really old oil painting of the Three Wise Men. It is magnificent and I have it out on the table across the room from my Christmas tree.

My partner and I bought some toys for the children at the local women's shelter and that was fun picking them out and wrapping them. I went to a Christmas program at a local church and a school chorus Christmas program. Both were kind of fun.

I put on some old Nat King Cole music and baked some cookies.

Wow, now that I write it out I can see that I am doing way better this year than I have for many years. I can do this and I can have fun doing it. I have faith that I can.


Blessed Yule and Merry Christmas

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

My Wake Up Call

10 years ago I heard this song for the first time and it was literally my wake up call. It touched something inside me and sent me on an interesting, strange and sometimes disturbing journey that broke my own self imposed prison. It sent me on a road to finding out how to be happy and truly live not just exist. And yeah..I did all the first four things mentioned.






It is just as valid now as it was 10 years ago to me.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Working through Sorrow

I have not written for a few days. My mind and heart are kind of distracted by another death in the family. It's another one of those dilemmas where you are happy for the person who has moved from this life into the next one..but sorrow at the loss of their presence in this physical plane.

As my own best friend, I will give myself a few days to process this with the help of my Guidance.


The world feels different without you, Nori. Good Journey to the next life, my friend. Your suffering is over and you are free to live the life you so deserve.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

My Formula for Emotional Control

Emotional Control

The Human Condition is shaped largely by “feeling” and by the nature of this physical realm; subjectivity rules. True objectivity is not possible. However; by knowing this, we can choose to control our ego/emotional responses. This allows us to view our environment, ourselves and others in a more objective way. Here lies the key to observing the man made illusions of this plane, working them without becoming part of the illusionary patterns. It is the basis of creating better personal realities for ourselves.

From the time I was very young, I was an extremely emotional person with no idea how to process my feelings properly. I either repressed them; pretending not to feel what I felt, or I responded without thinking. Both of these choices proved to be very damaging to my sense of self and my self esteem. My responses engaged my ego to rise up and represent me for so many years. By doing this I shaped a personality facade that was not representative of my total being. Just my emotions and ego.

I was fortunate to have a strong connection to my spirituality. I don’t know why or how but I did. And thankfully my “Inner Guidance” stepped in and helped me to slowly change my emotional response patterns. It took me years to finally “get it” but once I did the results were amazing. And even though I get the idea and know how much better I handle things, it is still hard to break old patterns. But it can be done. The benefits are so worth the effort. I haven’t shared this with many for several reasons. It is one of those things that presents so simply that it appears complicated and difficult to explain in a way that satisfies the minds demand for understanding. As you work with it; if you choose to, you will notice a noticeable transformation in the way you handle difficult situations and how you view the world in general.

My “Guidance” gave me a formula to use as a basis for controlling my emotions.


Stimuli--------->Perception-------->Interpretation--------> Reaction----------->Response--------->Actions


Stimuli

The first one is obvious. It is merely what the environment is for that moment, hour, day, etc...It can be anything. Everything in this physical plane can be stimuli. Our minds register millions of pieces of data that is stimuli all the time. And it is processed unconsciously every second.

Consciously working this formula is helpful when you are aware of discomfort inside.



Anything that triggers fear, anger, hurt feelings, guilt etc..is the time to consciously utilize the formula. For example, someone says something to you that rubs you the wrong way. That is the time to stop and work the formula. Stimuli is a fairly objective form at this stage.

One other thing about stimuli. It is not always the reason for the emotions to engage..sometimes stimuli is merely a trigger. Triggering something that was repressed and long buried inside us. Sometimes the actual stimuli has nothing to do with what we are feeling about it..it is just the trigger and nothing more.


Perception

How the stimuli is first processed. The first response to the stimuli is how you sense it. Where do you sense it. What is the first thing that comes to mind when you sense it? This is where the stimuli changes shapes and becomes subjective. For example, you wake up and the day is rainy. You can perceive the stimuli as either just rain or a sense of forboding, a sense of anticipation.


Interpretation

This is where it starts to get tricky. What are you interpreting from your perception of the stimuli. Example, it is raining..your perception is irritable when you note it is raining; your interpretation is the weather is going to ruin your whole day.

It is the place where you really begin to internalize and process with your emotions how you perceived the stimuli. This is where you start feeling it in your solar plexus. The beginnings of angst. You have interpreted the weather, the remark, the way your hair looks, the way your house looks not in a good way and the solar plexus begins to churn.


Reaction

At this point the “feelings” engage. The process is felt in the solar plexus and the second chakra

A Word on Emotional Repression

Repressed emotions are generally stored in the second chakra for women. Repressed emotions are things that were upsetting, devastating or traumatic to us that we did not process. It is a mistaken belief that if we ignore or shut out hurtful or unpleasant feelings that they have gone away. This is a pseudo attempt at emotional control and it doesn’t work.

The feelings we repress are pushed down into the second chakra. It’s like shoving things we don’t know what to do with in a damp basement. The things we put there change shape. They swell up from the damp environment, growing mold and fungi until they are no longer recognizable.

Just because we shoved them in the basement and forgotten them doesn’t mean they went away. They merely took on a life on their own, fed by more and more things shoved down there.

They take up space that we could use more creatively. The space becomes unhealthy and impairs the potential for improving our quality of life. They spread out and no matter where you step, you jar something that explodes in a wave of unpleasantness. It becomes a huge monster size living dump of the feelings we did not process.

The second chakra becomes a storage of pain and discomfort. As it fills, we become less receptive to ourselves. Our emotions are then triggered by things that are not even related to what is actually happening at the time span we are in. When these unhealthy storage areas inside us are triggered, we could be responding to something that happened years and years ago. The perfect breeding ground for sickness, bitterness and perpetual anger. And this mix will eventually erupt like a volcano all over your life.


Processing Feelings to Prevent “The Basement Disaster”.

I know I have repeated this a hundred times. Be your own best friend! And that means legitimizing how you feel. Stop for a bit when you are feeling angry, sad, confused etc...and give yourself permission to feel this while you observe it. Acknowledge your discomfort and observe the flow of these feelings without trying to make it feel better, push it away, resist or understand it. Let it flow through you. Notice where you feel it the most inside of you as it flows through you. Acknowledge that you feel sad, hurt, angry, confused, etc...This allows you to process and observe without actually interacting with the flow as it comes though you and leaves.

Resistance adds strength to the thing you are resisting. As your resistance grows, so does the force you are trying to resist. Just let it flow through you. It may take a few minutes, hours or days.

Just give yourself the time and space to legitimize and acknowledge how you feel. Make a ritual of it, circulating your aura while you do this, connect with your Higher Source, give yourself Reiki. I personally set aside time almost everyday to do this. I have so much buried crap inside me. I set aside an hour..half hour sometimes 15 minutes. I light my candles and incense, sit in my favorite chair and allow the discomfort to flow through me for a set time. Then I do something really good for myself. Like soak in the tub, read a book, give myself Reiki or eat a piece of chocolate.

This will neutralize the urge to repress. It will disarm the ego’s litany of self denigration. It allows you to make peace with yourself and keep your inner spaces clear for your own creative works. It keeps you from burying the vast treasure you have inside you.


Response

At this point the emotions will engage. This is where you decide what action will manifest from this processing. Will it be angry words, an act guaranteed to make someone feel guilty, a clever plan of revenge or a barrage of self hate. Or will it be a decision to keep processing it until you make peace with yourself and the energy of the emotions. A response ability that allows you to use the processing of your emotions as a learning experience, utilizing wisdom and discernment on how to act on what is best for your and your wellbeing.



Actions

There is no end or beginning to this formula. It is more like a cycle. Then end product is still going to circulate in it’s spiral patterns. Processing is an ongoing thing. We all process our emotions but we either do it unconsciously or consciously. Unconscious processing leads to repression..Conscious processing of the formula leads to heightened self awareness, self knowledge and wisdom.

The action you take after processing through the formula will always circulate back. Incorrectly or correctly for yourself. For there is no right or wrong. Just what is correct for you or incorrect.

What you manifest into the physical plane as an action will either be back for further processing or help you process other difficult situations.





I hope this helps. It is difficult to explain but so very important to me in my everyday life.


The good thing about doing this repetitively is after a while, it becomes second nature and almost automatic.

If you decide to utilize this...it will make an immense difference in your quality of life and how you view yourself and others If not, it will be fine. You will find a way.

Review:

Utilizing the Formula for Emotional Control.
Legitimize your feelings and emotions.
Observe and Acknowledge your feelings and emotions.
Do not repress or resist the flow of feelings and emotions.
Using these tools heightens self awareness.
Be kind to yourself and be your own best friend. Process your feelings enough that you lose the ego’s urge to self denigrate.