Struggles of Life: Coming Into This World

Being born and thriving in the world is full of struggles and challenges. It is this challenge that is our purpose for incarnating. Struggles come with the territory of manifesting in Human Form. We have enough consciousness to make physical and emotional survival an interesting process. Born helpless, we rely on parents or adults to feed us and to teach us how to survive. As babies, we offer these caretakers the opportunity to give unconditionally to a tiny human with the hope that this child will survive long enough to enter their own period of adulthood. (Though, sadly the unconditional love piece is often missing… And, surviving to adulthood is NOT guaranteed.) This set of struggles to be born, to be raised, and to participate in our life’s lessons is what life, as a human incarnation, is about. We are often conscious enough to know the challenges and lessons as we are caught up in them. Young parents adapt their lives to accommodate their babies (hopefully.) The parents are tired and emotionally tested. Sometimes they wonder why they chose to have children enter their lives and to distract them from other life issues. Most parents will eventually love and appreciate the struggles of their babies and perhaps all of the other souls who participate in this challenge called life (on Earth.) It is never without drama. It is never done error free. It is a learning and balancing act. The bond of the relationships in families is often forged as one of the strongest emotional bonds we humans can experience and we can pay the emotional price when a family member transitions from life (dies.) Coming into the world always ends with a transition out of the current worldly existence. This is a certainty we can not elude or change…
Love and appreciate all days and moments, and the souls you bump into.

The miracle of birth and of the growth of the physical and emotional being is always surprising. The joyful good times are fun and the pain of life traumas are scars which all concerned bear and must learn from. We all have our scars and life’s travails are so very important. We are all born unique and as our lives develop we have our individualized lessons. The goal is to be as conscious as possible and to share the wisdom we develop from life’s experiences. We are here to learn and to share. We are here to Love and to support the fellow pilgrims we meet. If you “circle the wagons” and keep from sharing your story, you may miss some golden opportunities to grow by teaching what you have learned from your struggles.

Life as a human is not supposed to be easy as in a fairy tale. Yet, when we come closer to enlightenment, we might find joy in even the most difficult challenges we confront. A wise friend of mine reminds me often of the great honor it is to live and to work through the struggles we negotiate along the way. Every moment is a blessing, if we allow ourselves to view the event from a spiritual perspective… AND, that is a Big If…

Find Joy! Live in Joy! You are a perfect manifestation of the Divine Spirit! YOU, like all life on this Earth, are a MIRACLE!

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Long Lives – Short lives: Food for Thought

We come into our earthly existence with the agreements to work on certain challenges for our own spiritual development or for the benefit and development of the souls we interact with. There are certain lives/Incarnations which seem to require a longer investment in Earthly time and there are other incarnations where we appear for shorter amounts of Earth time. I have read that sometimes highly evolved souls show up and volunteer to incarnate for only short Earth lives for the benefit and challenges to other souls, as when a Baby dies early in life or a teenager dies in an accident or suicide, or a younger person parishes in a war. In these cases, the families grieve the loss of their precious young member and their lesson/challenge may be in working on their grief and finding the purpose of this difficult emotional event. What can be learned from this tragedy? (And, how can we find good ways to be of service after having to live through a difficult challenge from the “loss?”)

From personal experience, my wife seemed to die too young and seemed to not deserve her fate. However, as I reflect on her premature transition from her life, I know how much I have learned, how close our relationship became from this difficult experience, and I have been able to serve other people by sharing my stories as if this tragic lesson was learned for many souls to be touched. A parent losing a child seems much more challenging than the loss of my partner and so this may be a more significant learning opportunity. Life is precious! Life is short! Life is impermanent! Whether difficult to deal with or not, it is a blessing to have short lived souls enter and leave our lives for the gifts which these experiences bestow.

The most difficult group I have ever spoken with as a stress management trainer, was a support group for parents who had children died. Infant’s premature deaths, suicides, accidents, and illness robbed these parents of a more “natural” family relationship. The pain of these parents and their guilt due to their responsibility for their offspring was palpable. Yet, the learning from these tragedies was on the front runner for all involved. Sadness and grief are major life challenges. Appreciation of lives lived is an outcome which often can take long periods to resolve. We have all lost friends and family and have had major changes in our relationships. The vacuum which these losses create offer huge potential learnings for our conscious development and possible empathy for other people who travel similar paths.

My point is that we can learn a lot whether the person we are in relationship lives a long life or is only here for a relatively brief time. There is great value in learning from lessons of the short lives or long lives. Though very difficult to achieve, we can have equanimity in difficult situations and perhaps avoid getting sucked into the drama which can accompany a person transitioning from their current life. (At least, after the shock and grief from our loss has mellowed a bit with time and, hopefully, a normal adjustment into life without our friend or loved one…)

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Service to the World, Are You Doing Your Part?

How much service to the world is enough? Being of service takes many roles and can be offered in many ways, but are you doing your part? Most of us are engaged in “survival” and we might not have the time or the resources to consider living our lives in service. Most of us do not even really understand how much service we provide because we are not conscious of the regular interactions which benefit the people we bump into. An unconscious gesture like the smile or the thank you or the acknowledgement of appreciation can offer a lot. And, there are some of us who seem to wake every morning excited and considering what acts of conscious service we can provide.

Most of us feel really good when we are doing something we know to be “good” for another person. As we share this loving energy, we get more in return by our act of “giving.” The act of giving, without any strings attached, is a true gift. When providing a service like non-judgmentally listening to someone’s “story,” we, as the “witness,” provide a huge service. Yes, something as simple as listening in a loving way can benefit everyone involved AND even the “Universe.” Demonstrating: patience, acceptance, gratitude, support, love, and connection, are all acts of service which can improve the general levels of consciousness and specifically the individual souls who bask in these higher energies. Thank You for your service, in advance…

By being most conscious regarding your interactions with any of the fellow pilgrims you bump into, you offer an opportunity for positive growth. You do not have to agree with the behaviors which get acted out but you can still look to the beauty and perfection of the person standing in front of you. They are a Miracle! They have arrived to assist you in your lesson, sometimes providing challenges for you to learn your lessons. Even when the situation may feel negative and overwhelming, you are able to “practice” your growing strategies for moving into higher consciousness. What a blessing!

Be aware! Take off your blinders! All of your interactions have a value and purpose, even if you are not clearly aware to what the purpose may be. Look to live in Love! Feel the perfection of each situation. Take responsibility for your reactions and behaviors. And, when all else fails in a difficult interaction, you can with empathy ask, “What has happened to this person to make them act the way that they behave?” You may not know the answer, but you are feeling, with empathy, the life experience and lessons this person is working through. (Or, they are pushing your buttons, because that is the lesson you require…)

If you can think of nothing else, do not miss the opportunity to look into someones eyes and appreciate the beautiful soul in front of you. Giving thanks offers a connecting experience and demonstration of your acknowledgement. Again, thank you in advance for your acts of service and higher consciousness.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Life is Great! How is it going for You?

Have you ever felt that Life is Great?!!! Are you a “glass half full” or a “glass half empty” kind of person? Sure, life is full of difficult challenges and there are many difficult experiences we face. Many people get caught up in the fearful side of life or dwell in the status of victimhood. This is not “bad” but it is a lesson in personal responsibility that most of us must try to understand and then move through in our quest for higher consciousness.

Fear??? What is the worst that can happen? You will get around to dying someday…
Why live in Fear? (Book resource: “The Afterlife of Billy Fingers” lots of information from the “other side” (or maybe there is no other side only an earth bound less conscious side???)

In my understanding, life is not meant to be too easy. We tend to learn more from the mistakes and failures we encounter than from the easier, and more pleasant, successes. I believe that we are born into our lives with certain built-in flaws and imperfections which are our “lessons” to experience and learn from in this life. None of us are “perfect” and our imperfections make us the valuable characters we are meant to play. We bump into other imperfect souls and, whether we like it or not, are meant to learn from these exchanges and interactions.

I have heard other people exclaim, “Life would be so perfect (or so much better) IF this or that was different…” Well, that is what we are here to do. To change “this or that” especially when we actually have some choice or control and this means changing “this or that” about ourselves (or at least our beliefs.)

People have very different opinions on what is “Great” in life. These opinions do not often match up very well. Each one of us is unique and how we feel about the things we encounter is different and unique. “That is what makes horseraces,” is an expression exemplifying why difference of opinions creates the wonderful diversity of experience in our lives. Sure, we bump into other people’s opinions which “trigger” our mental or emotional states of mind.

You are special. You are unique! Your soul is part of the larger Divine Spirit and the Divine can not exist without YOU and your challenges. So please consider the self-awareness of taking responsibility for yourself and your lessons. Learn to smile at the difficult challenges you face because these can be the most important lessons you have to learn from in this life. When you do smile at these life challenges you may end up “knowing” that life is Great!

One last rant, the other seemingly imperfect souls we bump into in this warm tumbling drier called life, are all connected to us and to the Divine Spirit. They are simply other perfect manifestations of ourselves. We are all in this together. Enlightenment comes when we realize this and know that our “purpose” is to reach around and grab the hand of the next person to support them and to assist their consciousness building efforts even if these other actors seem remote and unconscious…

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Good Communication: A Secret to Your Success

For good communication, STOP trying so hard to be heard! Quit telling YOUR story! Start listening and asking the right questions. Easier said than done but good communication involves using your ears more than your mouth. Why do you have two ears and only one mouth? So you can listen twice as much.

Sure you want to share your story and your wisdom and your experiences. Good communication allows for all of this and it is critical for the supportive, wisdom sharing relationship you want. However, how do you know how to put the correct emphasis on your story when you have not discovered the need or shared experience of your communication partner? Besides, talking “at” someone is not the same as speaking “with” someone. The “with” includes respecting your partner enough to listen and ask the clarifying questions where you can both learn from the subject being discussed.

Good communication involves some patience and respect which is demonstrated by NOT interrupting with YOUR story AND caring about your partner and what they are attempting to convey. If they seem to be repeating, redundant, perhaps they need to be guided and sometimes reminded that other members of the relationship would like their time to share…

We, as a culture, are often lacking with good communication skills. We need to learn them and practice. We need to start by realizing that all people we bump into are “perfect” even with their flaws and imperfections which they have brought with them in this life to “learn” from. We all have flaws. We all have lessons (challenges) to take responsibility for and then to learn from. That increased consciousness and our skills of supporting other pilgrims who we have met on the “path” is our purpose.

Besides, other people will like you and respect you more when you show them respect and really listen. Ask good questions to help your partner clarify their story. You will both be better able to learn from this shared experience. Be interested and people will find you to be interesting.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master! Your wisdom from your life experience can have great value to other pilgrims on the path toward awakening and enlightenment.

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

A Victim or Are You Responsible?

Have you ever complained about something in your life? Sure, everybody has. Have you ever known someone who seems to live in a state of constant complaining? Sure, you have. Have you ever noticed that people who are generally happy are also the people who seem to take responsibility for their situation, accept their challenges, and find ways of making the best out of a difficult situation? We all have challenges. That is why we were born into our lives. Some people more easily realize the benefits of learning the lessons and some people seem to like to wallow in their grievances.

Today, I spent a long half hour with a person who had a lot of upset about her childhood from 50 years ago. There was victim status and grievances written all over this suffering human. I was at a loss to fix the past childhood mishaps. My listening lost concentration because I was distracted by that “pit of the stomach feeling” that this story was a re-occuring theme and a source of deep satisfaction. Not to the listener but to the storyteller who was a “victim” of this history. There was little acknowledgement of personal responsibility by the story teller, not for the bad experiences, but for not letting them go and moving on in life. This blog is not about my acquaintance but about my lesson and my lack of patience. My mind got “triggered” as it has in the my past when a person seemed to relish their role of living as a victim. I live with my challenges, ghosts, demons, and lessons by seeing how I am responsible for these occurrences and how I can learn from them so I can move on to my next challenge.

There are times when I explain my mistakes, foibles, flaws, and weaknesses by saying, “People like to do what they are good at (and familiar with) even making the same mistake over and over…” It is familiar as a bad habit just like a familiar old annoying friend. So I must learn to celebrate the people I bump into who are deeply invested in living their lives as victims. It is NOT for me to “judge” them but it may not be my role to sit there for half and hour and listen to them complain… Obviously, I must learn my limit of “kindness” in listening and be discerning enough to know that I do not have the job of talking them out of their need to be seen as a victim…

If you have more patience to share with me, I would appreciate any gift to assist me through my lesson. AND, I celebrate you for knowing and acknowledging your responsibility in choosing your lessons in this life. We can all be reminded of our need for personal accountability for the way we respond to the challenges we meet in life. Learn to be responsible for your reactions.

If you have a story to share, consider sharing with our community, Masters of the Journey. Whether you know it or not, YOU are a Master!

PS. I was whining and sounding like a “victim” in this blog… We all have to try on the various roles and the ones that do not fit well we must discard and look for the roles that do feel correct (or better.)

You Are a Master: Only Your Life Is “Petty”

Whether you know this or not, YOU are a MASTER! Whether you believe it or not, you have much to say. To prove this to you, let me begin by asking you a question. Have you survived your life and managed to live through YOUR life experiences until now? This life you have “lived” has provided you with many lessons. Some fun and easy and joyful… And, some challenging, maybe difficult, or even painful but you have managed to get here! Your life stories have had episodes that other people might “shake their heads at” and wonder if they could have survived these experiences (yes, the ones YOU DID survive.) If Hollywood made a movie about the weirdest challenges you have been through, many people would think that it was pure fiction and no one could have survived these challenges. BUT, you did survive and thrive. You grew and you learned. YOU have much to share! You may have some difficulty in finding the words to speak about the losses and heart felt emotions you have known. YOU have had those moments when the “LIGHTS went ON!” And, you really “got” the meaning of the lesson that was presented. You may not give yourself enough credit for the difficult answers which you have had to learn.

Your purpose in life is to share these moments with other people, maybe family or friends or even total strangers. You will serve these fellow pilgrims by showing that you care and by sharing your stories as humans have done for thousands of years around a camp fire or while working shoulder to shoulder. Yes, you can reach out and support these fellow travelers through life who you might bump up against. Do not wait. Your purpose is to share AND tell the stories in a way where your witness knows that the lesson you have learned is NOT just your lesson but a “Universal” lesson. A lesson which we can all benefit by hearing.

You are much greater than your body and your life “seem” to be. Your soul and spirit radiate out in every direction and touch the universe. Without you and your divine self, the Divine Spirit would be missing a key piece. Though your life may seem small, even petty, actually it is a cornerstone which allows all of consciousness to exist… It is not your day to day drama which binds this universe, it is the radiant love and light that is at your core. It is the soul who has come into this life to learn the lessons and to remember your purpose and your true divinity.

As you are a reflection of the perfection of God, everyone you meet has a perfect soul somewhere within the confines of their human body. Perhaps imagine that every person you meet is worth eye contact and a smile. A “knowing smile” which says that you know and love the blessing which dwells within them. This is easier said than done when the physical, “petty” manifestation seems to “push your buttons.” Those buttons are pushed so you can learn your lesson of lessening your judgement and developing the skill of keen discernment to look deep into their soul to see the reflection of God’s greatest work… YOU are a blessing! You are a MASTER, perhaps caught in a struggle which you will learn from and over come.

You may want to consider how you can enhance your “knowing” and you may seek the support of nonjudgmental members of your spiritual tribe. Perhaps you will want to learn more and participate in, Masters of the Journey, a Transformational Community. At any rate, blessings to you on your pilgrimage through this life. Where ever possible, share your wisdom and support your fellow travelers.

Marriage: Get me to California for the Wedding

My younger son, Mike, is getting married this month. Michel and Mike have been together for several years and they are a wonderful team. Being 30 years of age, Mike has not waited as long as I did to commit to marriage. (I was not ready until almost 34.) The commitment of marriage is not what I want to write about. It is obviously a huge commitment and should be considered very carefully by two responsible people because this decision is a “Life time” commitment, even if one or both of the members of this union chooses to leave this relationship (for whatever reason.)

A marriage creates a union forming the foundation of a family. It brings together two families. It brings together two people in one of the strongest bonds and strongest responsibilities that life can present. Though it sounds like I am speaking about commitment to marriage let me digress.

When people two people choose to marry do they “KNOW” what they are getting themselves into? Answer: No one does! Life leads down a path that may not be easily predictable. You rarely know where Life can lead and what lessons you are to learn from this experience. The beauty of living life is the weird twists and turns that create the unique and beautiful moments in life, even the most difficult challenges! The trust in your partner is almost always tested. I do not mean this in the most obvious ways of fidelity to the marriage. I mean in the times of challenge such as: parenting, illness, and even death, trusting the divine spirit and the learning that must occur. We choose to come into this life and into this set of lessons for a reason and getting along with your chosen partner creates very important chances to experience and “live” through significant challenges.

It is a blessing when two people find each other and create the bond of trust. As they walk hand in hand through life they are connected and must support their partners through all the good and difficult times. In a small way, marriage is a living example of “oneness” and the true lack of “self.” With the exchange of unconditional love, partners find themselves in each other and, possibly, a part of something much greater. A chance to love, demonstrate unconditional love, and to be part of heart driven union is one of the major lessons we are here to learn. This requires overcoming fear, self-doubt, perhaps a history of trust issues, and the willingness to be a participant in something much greater than a single individual’s life. Trusting your heart, knowing your heart, and following your intuition regarding your partnership is a huge step and engages the mind, the body, and the spirit.

Mike and Michel, I know you are loving, spiritual beings. Go and create the good in the world that your bond through marriage enables the both of you to offer.

I Love You! Your connection serves as an example of what can be most positive in life.

Blessings.

Take good care of each other and your selves.

Along the way, do what you came here to do and make the world a better place. Enjoy the lessons, even the challenges, that are a part of the process of living. Be the team I hope that you can, and will, be.

Let there be the bright and shining light of love in the world, and may you find yourself basking in the brilliance of this unconditional love from within.