The Holidays 2018: Survival Guide

Every year about this time, we slip into the Season of the Holidays! In the Northern Hemisphere these holidays often fall on of near the Winter Solstice and were probably originated to assist early civilizations to cope with short days and then the rebirth of sunlight. We tend to mark the “dark times” of the year with lights/fires, social gatherings, and ceremonies. Too much food and too many gifts have become a tradition for people who can afford this kind of celebration and a challenging reminder for those of us who are not capable of participating at the level of overdone gluttony. My favorite holidays have always been more simple and with the people who really choose to be available, as opposed to whom I am “supposed” to celebrate with. As an example, last Thanksgiving (in 2017), 11 friends gathered at my house. They all had other places they could have been but chose to hang out with our community of friends and share stories of what gratitude really means for them. It was one of the very best, possibly the best, Thanksgiving for me because we really wanted to sit at that table together, in love.

Wow, I used the “L” word. AND, the holidays are better when sincere Love, with NO strings attached, are shared in respect, acceptance, and gratitude. How I wish the “Holidaze” had more of these true sentiments. Every human being, and most plants and animals (yes even rocks and rats) appreciate a good dose of LOVE given unconditionally. So consider the greatest gift you can give by being fully “present” and finding a way to celebrate the beauty and perfection of the soul who stands in front of you. Reduce or eliminate your judgement and find the Divine Spirit reflected back at you!!! Warm yourself in the Brilliant Light and Warmth which burns in the fellow pilgrim which you share this road to Enlightenment with. If nothing else, acknowledge the soul and spirit as the fellow traveler they are.

No matter what your religious belief or the “rules of conformity” you are asked to follow, find some genuine Love and Respect. Dance in the light until the Joy wells up inside and you remember where your soul has come from and where it will return when your days in this life, transition into the freedom of the Divine.

No matter what else is said or you experience, KNOW that you are a Perfect manifestation of the Divine Spirit. You are important and your role is of major value. You serve by being the actor in this play and you do YOU better than anyone else!!! Overcome your own self-judgement and accept the beauty and the light you radiate! AND, remember to laugh when you plunge back into the weird Drama of your life… The drama and challenges are there to be the lessons so we (YOU) can learn to respond in the most positive sacred way to the hellish relationships and circumstances we might find ourselves within. We did NOT come to this life to avoid change or challenges. We came because these tougher times become the very best crucibles for our learning and development.

If you find yourselves away from family and friends, try to ind a way to connect and to serve. You will feel better and learn from each interaction. If you find yourself with family and friends, attempt today deep to find the best expression of your love and appreciation. You that the souls you meet during these holidays are on the path, whether the fully understand or not, and every interaction offers you an opportunity to be the beacon of love and light to guide all who are present one step closer to enlightenment. Step up and be the force for good you want to see in this world… Bless you for trying!

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

We Are Old Souls: No Excuses

A guide recently said to me, “We are all old Souls!” I was taken aback. This comment was triggered by a meditation I was recently having and my partner in this meditation revealed himself/herself to me as older and distinguished. Kind of like looking at Moses or one the Wisepersons from biblical times, you know old and gray. Long gray hair and beard and robes just standing there like in a movie. I was a little surprised and remarked, “You are an OLD Soul!” His answer surprised me and got me thinking… “We are ALL Old Souls.”

In contemplating this response, it opened the door for me to consider that all of our souls have been a part of the “Divine” since the Divine consciousness was created. If we believe that there is time (and I am not sure about this anymore) then our souls have been hangin’ around, pushing through various incarnations, over and over, trying to master our lessons for awhile. Some of us (our souls) may have been busy doing other things, like being a glacier or a tectonic plate, and have not taken the fast tract forward toward Enlightenment or Awakening or whatever the purest form of consciousness is defined by. Some souls are in hurry and scurrying around bumping into experiences which seem to expedite the process. Some souls just spend 40 days in the desert and came back to be Christ! AND, to confuse things even more, some spirits or souls are so highly spiritually evolved they did not have to incarnate at all, EVER! (And, these unfortunate souls do not get to come to the “fun” amusement park we call Earth.) But forget about these beings, for now.

We, our souls that is, have been hangin’ around since the dawn of consciousness in some form or another AND we all are AS OLD AS POSSIBLE. Yup, YOU have no more excuses for your infantile behaviors or thinking. We are all old and wise. We just forgot! When we arrived in this current incarnation our memory of where we came from was erased so we could struggle with our current lessons and challenges. If we could just “REMEMBER where We Came From” and the Divine Perfection we are, then we would not have to take “Life” so seriously and live in Joy more 24/7. Well, that is deep and it is our lesson… BTW, we are supposed to share our wisdom & Joy and truly love every other soul we bump into because we are all in this together… Take responsibility, ’cause whether you remember this or not, you chose to come back in this incarnation AND for a lesson!

Well this was not what I thought I was going to get out of this simple, low expectation, meditation. You never know. So pay attention! Be open! And, do not try to write yourself a note excusing your behavior as just a youthful miscalculation. You were supposed to step on that turd and knew it was there on some level of consciousness. Just clean it up and do not track it into the house for dinner… With my Love and appreciation! You are Perfect!

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

Your Gift to the World Is YOU!

Do you like receiving a gift? Do you get pleasure and satisfaction from giving a great gift? If you are like most people, you get a great sense of satisfaction by giving a thoughtful gift. Hopefully, the gift has no “strings attached” to the process of giving. (You know what I mean when you give a gift and EXPECT something in return for your efforts…) Your present may be heartfelt and wrapped in the elegance of your warm wishes and tender love. It may be given in a more functional, less extravagant wrapping. It may have been thought out and well planned or a spontaneous act of sharing. You know when your act of giving is especially well received and when it does not meet the highest response.

A genuine act of kindness is often the most thoughtful gift which you can offer. “The thought counts” and the endearing follow through can be most meaningful. AND, many of us do not appreciate the present we can offer when we are sharing our love and our time and our compassion. You know that moment in time when the person in front of you offered you their “presence” and their listening skills as you share the most emotional memories. What a great gift when you are fully heard and this connection reminds you that you are not on your own. There is someone who listened and who cares…

Whenever, you increase your consciousness, you improve yourself. By enhancing your awareness and listening skills, you become more precious in your interactions. And, if you ever touch the Divine Spirit so that you fully celebrate the “perfection” of the person in front of you, you become the beacon of light which heals and warms the souls of every spirit you touch. There is no greater gift you can give. Honor yourself, for you are perfect even in your seeming imperfections. There is no one exactly like you. You are unique and at the same time Divinely connected to all other souls. Your lessons in this life are for you to move forward on your path BUT your movement on your path supports and assists everyone. Remember how Divine you really are and the source of unconditional love you can offer.

Be the best you can be. Not competitive but in your open ability to share love. If possible, drop your judgement and perhaps ask a “challenging” person you encounter, “What has happened to you in your life to lead you to be the person in front of me?” ALSO, remember that just as YOU are a Gift for the people you bump into, THEY are a Gift for you as well. You have a lesson to learn from every encounter and it is a blessing to learn from this challenge. You might want to consider honoring the beauty and perfection in front of you when next you lock eyes on the person standing in front of you!

YOU are a gift to the Universe! Sharing your Love and your wisdom gained through your life experience is an amazing service to the Universe. Grow in consciousness and share your Light!

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

Your Enlightenment and Your Environment

Have you considered the best environment for developing your “Enlightenment?” Does your “spiritual awakening” require a special environment? Does Enlightenment only come for those who sit in a cave, undistracted, over a period of time Which creates the solitude required to lead you to the “Light?”

Some experienced, and a bit rigid, (want to be) enlightened masters might say that solitude offers less distractions and a better “space” to go within, to find the Universal Divine Spirit. AND, I believe that this can work for some people but not for everyone, every time enlightenment “hits.” So, I began looking for some of the words used to describe a pilgrimage into the “cave” of undistracted solitude. Words that might be used to demonstrate a reduced distracted environment might include: Isolation, Vigil, Seclusion, Solitude, reclusive, withdrawn, possibly: Celibate and Abstaining from physical pleasures, Contemplative, Introspection, Reflection, Consideration, and Focused. These concepts can make it difficult and exclusive for many people running around in my culture. Are we all doomed to be un-enlightened? Perhaps…

Or, are there other environments or circumstances which can allow for a “spontaneous Awakening” like a NDE (Near Death Experience) or an “Ah Ha” moment in meditation or in experiencing a major “insight” in life (perhaps a STE (Spiritual Transformative Experience.)) An example for me was when I hiked up into Evolution Meadow and viewed the surrounding mountains and sky with a surprising, for me at 25 years of age, insight of being in “God’s Cathedral,” realization. (Since at that time, I would never say the word “God” let alone find an experience that would trigger me to use this word.) Can activities and interpersonal interactions lead you to a moment of enlightenment? Once you have had a real moment of knowing the state of Grace or feeling the Universal “connection” to the “source” and all a “oneness” with other souls, you can never go back into complete un-enlightenment. You can NOT get the Genie back in the bottle… Though, what you do with this new insight varies and may take a very long time to surface as a useful gift to be shared.

Some “moments” of insight have come for me in deep meditation but never in a cave of solitude. For me, a private act of self-discovery, realization, or a “remembrance” have come in a variety of environments and with varying degrees of social interaction. Though these have been private in the moment, many of these experiences were not in deep isolation or seclusion. Oddly, sometimes I focus better with distractions around me, as if I would trust someone else to protect me (feeling safer) and I can “let go” of my defenses in a group. (Not always true, but sometimes…)

Your path to Enlightenment will be unique for you. The environment will be of your creation. A quiet, meditative environment may prove helpful but may not be required. Keep your eyes open for any possible “awakening” (perhaps in a Zen like way.) Allow your soul/heart to be receptive to new experience and insights. Feel your guidance which may lead you to a chance of a lifetime and a special moment of “Grace!” You are on the path, whether you know it or not. You are here, in this life, to experience and to learn. AND, when your “Awakening” happens, you are here to share this wisdom and your most recent leaps into consciousness.

Tip for Enlightenment:
No matter which path you take either as an aesthetic using deprivation to assist you in focusing or as a seeker bouncing off all the other people you bump in to in the “warm dryer called life,” you can help to clarify your consciousness by being mindful, present, and open. To be aware of the possibilities is more than half the battle. Being “closed” to new thoughts, Wisdom, Feelings, insights, conscious “knowing,” or simply the “remembering,” will slow your process and pilgrimage down. It is not always an easy task but being open AND present to enjoy, the “JOY,” can assist you greatly. All of these qualities are assisted through meditation and begin by following your breath. Slowly inhale, pause, and then slowly exhale… Attempt to feel the cool air as you breathe in and then the warm breath as you slowly exhale. Continue to breathe slowly and most consciously. Allow your thoughts and energy to flow as freely as possible. Perhaps you can “open” your 6th and 7th chakras for a better connection to the Divine Spirit. You may even attempt to allow yourself to elevate (out through your Crown Chakra) to an 8th or 9th chakra and higher dimensions. Paula Forget’s book, “Guided to the Higher Realms,” may be a useful guide to assist you to expand your consciousness to what is possible. (Check her website at: www.paulaforget/inspired for more information.)

It may also be useful to practice holding the intention that you are open and available for the Guidance to and the experience of an “Awakening!” The Divine Spirit surrounds each of us. It is embedded in each of us. A dark cave is NOT the only place where this unconditional love and energy abides…

YOU are amazing and perfect no matter where you are on your path! YOU are a blessing. Thank you for being YOU! In any way possible, allow yourself to be Open, Present, and Mindful of the wonderful adventures you find yourself within (even the challenging ones…) Whether you are actively seeking “Enlightenment” or not, you are still moving along that path.

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

Though I am Just a Man…

Yes, I am just a Man! Nothing special! AND, I am as perfect and as special as every person I meet! As a man, working on my 7th decade in this life, I appear to be “average,” whatever that means… I have been a son, a brother, a lover, a friend, a worker, a business owner, an author, a coach, a trainer, a father, a husband, a widower, a team member, a grandson, a grandfather, a facilitator, a teacher, a traveller, a student, a spiritual being in a human body, a neighbor, an enemy, a “ball player,” an athlete, a hiker, a camper, a photographer, a sage, a fool, a driver, a bike rider, a runner/jogger, and many other common roles in this lifetime.
SO ARE YOU! AND….

I am not special or different in many ways. I am unique and perfect in many ways. Just like YOU! I am NOT the role model for you to follow nor the person in the front of the room who tells you what to do and how to live your life. AND, I am the perfect role model which you were guided to bump into for the perspective I can offer. I am a wise older man and a completely immature fool… You can like me. You might find me annoying and difficult. We are on the same path, perhaps at different places along the way. AND, we are in this “thing” together, to support each other, as we find our way toward higher consciousness.

A am a Man! Metaphorically, take my hand and we will walk together. I can NOT live your life for you but I can support you and the adventure WE are on… As a man, do not expect that I will not make mistakes or I may even appear to let you down… Because as a man, I (& you) learn from my mistakes and transgressions. Our perfection is in how we play the role of the person we pretend to be. We do these roles so well. NO one can play YOU as well as YOU! BUT, we are so much bigger than our human roles. We are a perfect part of the divine spirit. We are so small and we are greater than the known Universe! We can feel like we are alone but we can remember that we are connected to all other souls and share unconditional love for each other… YOU are amazing and a blessing to me and to our Universe!

Do Your best to remember who you really are! You are a miracle! You are perfect in your seeming imperfections. Take responsibility and make good choices as you move through this human experience of life… AND, wherever possible share your story and your wisdom with the unconditional love from your heart and soul! Be a beacon for the good that is possible in every way possible!

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

Relationship Commitment: Till Death Due You Part

Relationship commitment, especially marriage, may not be fully understood when people enter into this commitment. I was married at 33 years of age, for the first and only time, and I had NO idea what being married for “Life” could possibly mean. I never really considered the “end game” of marriage…

“Till death do us part” is a part of some traditional wedding vows. This signifies that the married couple intend to spend the remainder of their lives together – They will be parted only by death. “Part” – note that it is used as a verb in this instance. S: (v) separate, part, split (go one’s own way; move apart) ”
(From: https://english.stackexchange.com)

My marriage lasted almost 28 years and this “commitment” ended when my wife “transitioned” from this life. It was a transition I thought I was prepared for because we were given her “Terminal diagnosis” 8 and 1/2 years prior to her passing over. One of my challenges after her death, was to understand the “Void” that was created when my life partner of 30 years was not physically in my world. This is not a unique experience. Many people have learned the lessons from “losing” a close friend, or a spouse, or a family member where there had been an official or unofficial commitment. How DO You prepare for this situation? Personally, I admit that when we got married in the Summer of 1984, I had never a remote thought about the “end game.” There are only two ways out of a real marriage which include death or divorce. The two difficult “D’s.” This is not meant to prevent people from considering the commitment of marriage or deep relationships. It IS meant to create awareness and higher consciousness regarding the bonding process and the lessons we all learn from these.

The illness which afflicted my wife (ovarian cancer) and our relationship gave us a chance to grow closer. We weathered many challenging “storms” together and learned much from this experience. This is NOT always the case. For some, leaving a difficult situation with a partner seems like a useful strategy but this never crossed my mind. But remember, the most stressful things in life come when you deeply care or love another person, friend, child, relative, or spouse, AND you have NO control over what happens to this person. Parents know the anxiety, and the rewards, of sending their child out into the world.

You were guided into a relationship with another human partner with no guarantees that you or they or the relationship would last forever. “Forever” is a long time and is too linear. (And, time is a whole other topic for spiritual conversation and belief.) You love, or deeply care, for a person and in being “Human,” there are NO guarantees… They might leave you or get sick and need caring for, or they might need to die. The BEAUTY in all this remains in the fact that you took a risk and were meant to have a relationship with another pilgrim (person) so you both, and all people in your greater community, can learn from this life experience. Not like in the movies where “they live happily ever-after” but in the REAL challenges in living in human form. A range of strong emotions happen. Compromises happen. Communication happens and when this is good communication we learn and refine our perspectives on life. You must be ready and aware of the relationships and the commitment you have been guided to have. This is a huge part of why you are here, in this life, and the lessons you have “agreed” to have…

Love Deeply! Follow your passion! Take a risk! Dance like no one is watching! If you ever meet my beautiful bride in this life as a spirit or in the higher realms, bask in the light of an angel. Death is NOT the enemy, it seems to happen to everyone at some point. Soak in all the unconditional love you find in every “perfect soul” you bump into as you tumble in the warm dryer called life.

AND, if you are challenged by the difficult lessons of relationships in this life, be willing to share your story and the wisdom you have experienced. You are a Master with wisdom from your life’s experience to share.

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

YOU are a Miracle!

Yes, You are a miracle! How do I know this? Because I know where YOU came from. You were NOT made in China and shipped to this country to be distributed by Amazon.com after being ordered on the internet! By the way, this ordering and distribution through Amazon is also a miracle but very different than the one we are here to talk about. You came from a long lineage of ancestors who joined together with Angels, Guides, the Divine Spirit, and star dust to create you in the life you now live. There are too many random acts which came together to create the perfection of who you are without a “miracle” label to help to understand how this process occurred.

Life is amazing! Life on the planet Earth is a miracle! AND, you were born and survived long enough to find your way to this blog. You were guided to experience these words and concepts to allow for your consciousness to expand by the perspective these words convey. Once again, it is, and you are, a miracle. Now, your job is to continue to grow, find joy, and to reach around to support fellow pilgrims who were “guided” into your life to share your experience and wisdom. By assisting your fellow pilgrims, you are actually assisting yourself and your own development. Yes, even the most annoying people are manifested in your life as a mutual lesson AND, you may not be ready to hear this, they are YOU! Our souls and spirits are connected and a part of every other soul and spirit. We are all a perfect piece of a much larger Divine Spirit which is too difficult to fully explain or understand with the limitations of the human brain (and ego.)

There are no accidents. There are no imperfect souls. Yes, there are challenging people and experiences because that is why we have manifested the human life we seemingly exist within. Many enlightened individuals believe that our lives and the reality we seem to work within are an illusion. The higher realms of pure soul and spirit are the true reality and we have agreed to return to the Earthly lives to face our challenges and to learn our lessons so we can expand our consciousness. Our goal in this life is to learn from our experiences, to support our fellow pilgrims, to search and find “Joy,” and to remember the “State of Grace” which we all return to after completing our incarnation.

Leap ahead! Remember the perfection and the miracle which is each, and every, soul you bump into! Celebrate each moment as the amazing lesson and experience of expanding wisdom. Share Love and your wisdom freely.

Remember, to be present and as you breathe in slowly, know the amazing miracle which is required for you to breathe. The oxygen you need is freed from the carbon dioxide you exhaled by the plants on land and in the oceans. Every part of this system is perfect. And, since matter is neither created nor destroyed, with every breath you take oxygen molecules that have been around since the dawn of our universe and enter your body. Some of these molecules where breathed in and out by Christ, or by Buddha, or by Ganhdi, or Mother Theresa, or by whomever you revere. You share in their past incarnation the same perfect spirit which makes you the miraculous spirit you are. You are a blessing!

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

What NOT to Do When you are Tuning in For Guidance

Psychics know how to find the correct “channel” when they are “tuning in” to Guidance. The tuning process may include raising YOUR vibrational energies and the “Guides” will lower their vibration to better connect with you. We have discussed tuning in or raising your vibrational energy in past blogs. Today, you have been guided to this blog to discover what NOT to do if you are attempting the tuning in process.

Thanks for reading… This is a list of Guidance impairing conditions which you can employ when you do NOT want to connect with Guidance:
1. Lower Your Awareness. Drugs and alcohol can help with reducing your sensitivity (at least for a while)
2. Multi-task. We are good at doing many things at once so we can “Distract” ourselves with many simultaneous activities. Over stimulation by using TV, computers, smartphones, other electronics… 24/7 (or at least first thing in Morning and last thing as you go to bed at night)
3. Do NOT Meditate. Meditation is the best way to connect with Guidance, so do NOT Meditate! (Mind quieting is a disaster when you are trying to avoid connecting with Guidance.)
4. Find a loud, noisy, toxic environment. Yes, avoid a peaceful natural setting at all costs.
5. Connect with really anxious, annoying people who are “Victims” and need your constant attention. Talkers who are also great interruptors are the best, for killing a session of guidance.
6. Which leads us to, Be a Victim and do not take responsibility for your behaviors, thoughts, or actions. Blame others all the time and wallow in the negative attention that this will bring.
7. Follow Dogmatic Philosophies which want to tell you how to think and behave. This can easily be found in philosophies, cults, political parties, religions, the military, and other totalitarian organizations, etc…
8. Deny you own Soul and spirit! Dwell in unworthiness and deep insecurity. Repeat over and over, “I am NOT good enough. I am stupid and bad…” Perhaps you can drink alcohol or take drugs to enhance this negative self-talk.
9. Live in Fear. Avoid Change. Listen to your Ego which believes that “it” is more important than the Divine Spirit!
10. Finally, DO NOT ASK FOR ASSISTANCE. Sit in the dark and just stew in your self-loathing because you must go through this to eventually be open to the assistance that your Angels, Guides, and the Divine Spirit can, AND WILL, provide.

Supplemental Things to do to avoid connecting with Guidance:
11. Avoid being present. Mindfulness is a trap. You want to ruminate on bad things from the past or the fear the unknown and uncontrollable future…
12. Go to Las Vegas and hang around in the smokiest casino you can find!
13. Drive really fast on a crowded freeway, honk at people, and pretend that you are doing something important and that you are in a big hurry. It also helps to kill connecting with Guidance if you can be as Judgmental as possible, feeling superior because YOU are so insecure.
14. Keep being pre-occupied with Money and financial insecurity. If you are already “Wealthy” and “Successful,” consider all the ways you can LOSE your $$$ or have people steal it from you…!!! (Then drink heavily to numb your fear…)
15. Avoid lovely, caring, creative and passionate people. These include good, HEALTHY friends and family.
16. Avoid experiences like reading great books on consciousness and empowerment.
17. Listen to ANGRY Rap/Hip Hop or very loud Heavy Metal played by sub-standard musicians who think that loud is an art form.
18. Watch a lot of Reality TV… AND, believe it. (Same is true for getting your news from unreliable internet sources…) Especially, the loudest conspiracy theories.
19. Deny that the Earth is in deep trouble, Listen to and believe Most Angry Extremists, or get your news, without fact checking, from the internet and TV media.

OR, to assist in tuning in to Guidance just do the opposite of these suggestions.
(In case, that this was NOT obvious enough.)

The Divine Spirit loves you. Your Guides and Angels love you. I love you. Now, You love YOU!

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

Basic Mindfulness Part 2: Living in a Mindful Way

Being Mindful has been a question for me. After my three day Mindfulness retreat, I am more Mindful about the things I have not been mindful about. What the heck does that mean…??? Well, read a bit further.

I learned at the retreat what I think I already knew but had not learned how this feels or how to incorporate being more mindful into my habit driven lifestyle. No surprise, the key to being more mindful is to be aware and “present” by paying attention to your breath. Again no surprise, I learned that being more mindful works better when I focus on only one thing at a time. For example, drive focused without other distractions. (More examples to follow.) This focusing on one thing at a time is kind of challenging in our 24/7, multi-tasking world, but it certainly makes sense.

We practiced slower walking and breathing, awareness and appreciation of nature, and more meditations. The first two key ingredients to being more mindful (with 10 listed) where 1. to be aware of myself and my environment and 2. was to view each activity in your day with “Beginners Mind” and the feeling of wonderment. I liked these first two a lot. In fact, I really enjoyed all 10 ingredients in the book we used as a text but found number 6 a bit more challenging for me to fully appreciate and understand, let alone to practice. Number 6 was to live in “Equanimity.” I can barely spell Equanimity let alone know how to practice it. After consultation with my retreat group, its leader Chau Yoder (who is amazing) and my special Guru spiritual consultant, Paula Forget, I believe I am much closer to knowing what this is all about.

Equanimity is a very important, but a challenging (for me,) part of the Mindfulness life. This term refers to being able to look at and appreciate experiences in your life without getting caught in the “drama” of the experience. Paula Forget suggested that I look at each experience from the higher perspective of a “spiritual being” caught in a mortal body. As I look from a higher perspective, I may not “judge” the event, individual or experience but just see, perhaps feel it, as a neutral activity that can be curious and interesting. When I am successful, I may even feel empathy and appreciation for the circumstances which have lead to this experience and more fully understand my “lesson” or “challenge” from my participation. Even if this lesson is painful, which as a human I will feel, I can still feel appreciation for what I can learn from this challenge on my pilgrimage through life. This detachment does NOT mean you do not care or feel the physical or emotional pain. It means that you are not locked up without finding the higher perspective regarding how to celebrate (?) this difficult challenge.

One more example and an exercise you can attempt… Hold a tangerine. Look at it fully. Appreciate the work of people who delivered this fruit to you and the forces of nature which allowed this fruit to grow. Feel the tangerine. Scratch the peel and smell the tangerine. Slowly and carefully peel the tangerine, perhaps keeping the peel in one piece. Pull the first section out slowly and place this in your mouth. Breathe! Feel the tangerine section in your mouth. Move it around with your tongue. Press it against your teeth or slowly take a bite. Breathe! Taste the sweetness. Appreciate the sun and forces which developed the sugar of this fruit. Slowly swallow the first section and then slowly repeat this for as much of this tangerine as you wish. If you were not distracted and were focused upon this exercise, attempt this at your next meal… Try to not speak for 10 minutes while you eat… Be mindful. Breathe slowly. Appreciate.

Full List of 10 Qualities of Mindfulness are:
These are Pages 18-20 of Laurie Cameron’s book: “The Mindful Day, Practical Ways to Find Focus, Calm and Joy From Morning to Evening.”

1. Awareness
2. Beginners Mind
3. Acceptance
4. Insight
5. Impermanence (Life is temporary and so are all the challenges…)
6. Equanimity
7. Interconnection
8. Compassion
9. Gratitude
10. Joy

Special thanks to Chau Yoder for these helpful acronyms:

Consider C.A.R.E. when dealing with life’s experiences
C. Compassion
A. Appreciation
R. Respect
E. Equanimity

To Assist you with this, try P.B.S.
P. Pause
B. Breathe
S. Smile

One more tip for dealing with a situation which “Triggers” you. R.A.I.N.
R. Recognize
A. Allow
I. Investigate with Kindness
N. Nurture (Yourself and the Appreciation of this Challenge)

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

Celebrating Independence By Remembering Our Interdependence

For Americans, July 4th is considered our Independence Day. Historically, it was a day when Americans came together to declare their Independence from a perceived tyranny. Today, most of the tyranny we face comes from our own perceptions and the personal independence we have been culturally taught. There comes a moment in consciousness when complete independence loses some, or most, of its value. This happens when we become conscious enough to realize that we are actually not fully independent but actually a part (a piece) of a much grander “Divine Spirit.” Our egos and “burning (taught) need” for individuality bends to the realization that every person, every lifeform, and every object in our Universe (and beyond) are inter-related and interdependent.

If you do not like reading this and you feel uncomfortable looking at the “crazy” people in the world with the consideration that they are you and you are they, then you have not “remembered” the shared roots which we all have. Each of us is an actor in a drama called life. We each have our role to play AND we have learned to play our character with perfection. Sure we whine when “things” are not going as well as we would “like.” Just learn to NOT take yourself or your role too seriously… You are much “greater than you will ever know” (or understand) this is a statement which has been said to me by my late wife and my friend Don Ley after he returned from his NDE (near death experience.) Nothing like a good NDE to put your life into better perspective… (Not a joke or kidding.)

Independence within the framework of each and every one of us being connected by spirit still allows for each of us to be different and unique. Just as snowflakes are unique, I am told, we each bring our unique challenges and lessons into our lives. We can not make progress and achieve our learning goals without bumping into other people and life experiences. These experiences are often challenging or difficult. A life which is too easy may overlook many valuable interactions with the difficult situations which we have been guided to know and to learn from. For myself, long ago I realized that I learn more from my mistakes, failures, and “trials by fire” than I learn when events go smoothly or as “expected.”

A desire to be too independent may prevent you from gaining from the shared experiences or wisdom of other “pilgrims” you meet on your path toward higher consciousness. The secret is to be not too dependent or too separate from other people. When I am present and mindful, which I am a small percentage of time, I see the beauty and perfection in the eyes and then the souls of the people I encounter. We are ALL in this together and we are all here to serve each other’s development of consciousness. AND, whether you know it or not, YOU have much to offer. YOU are a Master of your journey with wisdom from life experiences which, when shared, will assist fellow pilgrims on their path toward enlightenment.

So celebrate independence but within a conscious, reasonable position. Know that historically Americans could not have achieved their version of independence without working together with the intention of building a world of betterment for all. (Yes, there have been varying views on what these words and concepts might mean…)

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