Looking Through the Eyes of Wonderment

An update and revisit after spending time with my 22 month old grandson…

The Blessing a young child brings is to see what I know to be “common” as an amazing and unique moment in time. Like the first time I noticed a miracle in nature. Getting out of past and future expectations into the excitement of being present. Wide eyed and a celebration with each “new” thing… What Joy can I find in the incredible moment? It has never existed nor will ever exist again. Appreciation and Gratitude…

Last November, Mr Milo would ask “Whad Dat?” He would point to anything, and everything, and ask, “Whad Dat?” But now 8 months later he learns like a sponge, drawing all information into his budding human consciousness. He tries to mimic a word or short phrase. He has learned what some animals sound like. When we saw a Barred Owl on a hike a few days ago, he lit up and said “whooo.” The owl gave him a once over and knew that they were both of Divine birth and had some souls linked together… Well, maybe I read way too much into this interaction but it really struck me with the new adventure for Mr Milo which was playing out. He even learn immediately how to “hug a tree.” (With some credit and “blame” going to his grandfather.) Progress is coming quickly.

Background: in a shared meditation when he was one month old and napping in my arms, I saw him as older wise man standing above me and to my left. In my meditation, I was a bit surprised and said to him, “You are an Old Soul!” He replied, “We are all old souls…” This shocked me. Why was I having to learn something from a baby who is one month old…? Oh well. I am in a state of wonderment as I appreciate and learn from every soul I meet, if, I am most present and available.

Mr Milo is learning how to navigate in his current younger body with his encouraging parents. AND, when I look into his eyes, I can sometimes see that his connection to Divine Wisdom is not shut off. My service to this soul may be to help remind him of who he really is and from where he has come. Perhaps he will maintain his connection to the Divine and not have to accidentally find the connection to the Divine or to work so hard at “Remembering” this connection. I tell Mr Milo, “You are a Miracle!” and he has an interesting, perhaps a “knowing” smile as he then repeats, “Miracle,” “Miracle.” Very cute but…???

He serves all the people who can focus upon him as he moves through his current life in wonderment and demonstrates “Beginners Mind.” He is present. New things are an adventure and, only occasionally, “scary.” He is loved and protected by parents and guides as he moves along his path in this life adventure. So, I had few expectations regarding my necessity to become a grandfather but this may turn out very well for my learning at this stage in my current incarnation. Oh well, I thought I was done but I guess there is still more for me to participate within. What a Blessing!

Living in the consciousness of the Beginners Mind. Where everything is new and being fully present is cause for celebration of all the wonders of our human life on Earth. Can we all spend more moments in wonderment and remember our beginner’s mind? And, can we find those moments of gratitude for the beauty and perfections which manifest in every moment?

You are a Blessing! Thank you for being you.

Thanks for your time and consideration. Your insights and experiences are unique and a blessing, so please share these…

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

As the Days Blend Together

These are unusual times. During this pandemic, we are more than “normally” (and what is the new normal) confined to our homes and our thoughts. If you have managed to create a new lifestyle around the social distancing and home confinement, you may have even reduced your TV and Social media time for anxiety control. You may have found the Days of each week Blending Together. You may not even remember what day it is or what the date is for today. Perhaps this is even important. Perhaps being present and reflective is a survival technique which may lead to a new state of “Pandemic Enlightenment”…

Increased awareness and spiritual insights are often born out of difficult challenges. SO, get busy…!!! Discover YOUR lesson and its Wisdom… AND, once you discover your new insight find the best ways to share your new wisdom. This whole lifestyle adjustment is more than:
hand washing to an extreme,
wearing a mask which prevents smiling at people,
reducing your showers or clothes changing because you are not going out,
side-stepping people you pass in public,
food shopping for safety at 7:00 AM,
knowing how to stand 6+ feet apart as you wait for your “take out,”
searching aimlessly for hand sanitizer and clorox wipes (& TP) at Costco,
AND, joining an endless amount of Zoom conference calls to speak with other humans.

These adjustments have caused most of us to behave differently and to think about what we took lightly in the past… Craving a hug or hand shake. Carelessly, hanging out in a social situation with less than 6+ feet between us. Going shopping in a Mall with crowds of anxious, frantic people and loud children. Boy, we miss those days of naive simple consumerism.

But, have you been forced out into nature? Have you had to fill your time in Meditations? Did you find yourself reading a “good” book instead of “binge-watching” bad television/movies? Did you have to call family and friends to check-in? Did you have time to cook your own dinner and breakfast and lunch and snacks, two or three times per day? Sure, social media has filled in your day but didn’t you “CRAVE” hanging out with “real people?” There is an important lesson in this… Besides the necessary hand washing, you have found a new need for connection! Besides complaining and whining, you have actually learned who do you know in your life who can actually listen and respond with empathy.

Besides shopping and “eating out,” there are other ways to connect with friends and family that cost less and may have more value. Caring for other people is the least expensive way of sharing Love! Appreciation and Gratitude also may bubble up in these times of lifestyle change. Perhaps, most important is being more fully “present” in each moment in Nature or with the people we care about. We are all in this together… AND, YOU are a Blessing! Continue to learn and to grow in these times of life challenges… If nothing else, twenty years (or maybe 20 days) from now you will have great survival stories of the 2020 Pandemic and Hand Washing Craze…

Added on these thoughts… (The not so fun parts of our current, 2020, lives.)
(NOW, we have been faced with a new “drama” with demonstrations highlighting the cultural racism which has been “accepted” in our culture too long. White privilege was brought to this hemisphere by the earliest explorers and first settlers. They, and their religious beliefs, thought that they were superior to the indigenous peoples they thought “They Discovered.” Eventually, because they had the guns, they believed that they were the true saviors of this hemisphere however they needed slaves to work their stolen land. It is like this privilege has now been built into white folks’ cultural DNA. Relinquishing power and, perceived control, does not come easily to those folks in “power.” Black Lives Matter! All Lives Matter! However, releasing our old, established habits and patterns is NEVER an easy, though necessary, choice these weird days. Positive change challenges us. It forces us to reassess our established patterns and habits. Perhaps, the first step in a positive direction is to understand and admit “white privilege” exists and also admit that this needs to change for a better world. (Change is NOT easy. Changing our cultural DNA is needed but a difficult, uphill fight…)

AND. We are ALL in this together and one and the same…)

Thanks for your time and consideration. Your insights and experiences are unique and a blessing, so please share these…

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

Thanks for the Divine, Another Reminder of Gratitude

I went for my walk/hike this morning on a gray, breezy, and damp day. It felt good though a little chilly as I started out to walk in the woods around Lake Padden which is very close to where I live in Bellingham, WA. Today because of the cool weather there were fewer hikers and bikers than can be found on mornings when the weather seems more inviting. Up ahead of me on the trail as I was beginning my first turn around the lake I saw a familiar couple. Dave and his guide dog, Sporty, were out for their regular morning exercise walk. For me, this is a rare treat.

I first met Dave and Sporty a couple of years ago when I walked around the lake on a beautiful morning in the Pacific Northwest. Dave and Sporty caught up with me and passed me, moving at their normally fast pace. I worked to keep up with them and we had a nice visit as we walked the back side of the lake. Dave is a very friendly and articulate man. It is great to visit with him. He told me that he lives in the neighborhood, up the hill from the lake. Though blind, Dave has no problem with the visual disability which he lives with. Dave is NOT a victim in any way! When I try to imagine my life without eyesight, I struggle with this as a possibility. It seems, as a sighted person, to be a struggle I would find very challenging. Dave and Sporty are a high functioning team, in my mind…

When I caught up with Dave, I reminded him of who I was and that we had visited before. Dave knows many of the regular walkers and I have seen him in discussion with many others as I have walked this well used path around the lake. Dave’s positive attitude is infectious. I cherished my brief visit with Dave and Sporty today. I will cherish any future encounter and conversation with Dave and his trusty companion. My walk in the woods was grounding for me, as is usual but it was enhanced by my encounter with this pair of hikers.

An appreciation of each sacred encounter which the Divine provides us stands out as a learning opportunity. Gratitude is what I feel as I consider this beautiful unexpected addition to my day. Consider taking that walk in nature. Ground yourself in the natural beauty. Find appreciation for what you encounter and who you might meet as you walk your path through life… You are a Blessing! Search for Joy and the Divine in every encounter you are blessed to experience.

As I headed home, I did not notice the gray dampness or the chilly breeze. I notice how special each step is when I am fully present and available to cherish the beauty of my world. Miracles surround us, celebrate these in your own way.

Thanks for your time and consideration. Your insights and experiences are unique and a blessing, so please share these…

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

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

Share Your Gratitude Every Chance You Get!

Gratitude and Acknowledgement should NOT be your secret! Everyone needs and deserves to be thanked and to feel appreciated. In meditation this morning, I was told to share Gratitude. Not just to people and experiences who have been nice to me but to all the Life-force in the Universe. Never miss the chance to say “Thank You” and appreciate the blessings you behold.

If you allow yourself to be fully present, acknowledging every experience you encounter becomes your lesson. The world will be a better place, for ALL of us, when you demonstrate your gratitude. The art of appreciation is a nearly lost skill. We do send “Thank You” cards hardly ever. (AND, doesn’t if feel great to get a card of appreciation.) A shallow “thanks” is still better than none at all. A focused look into someone’s eyes as you share a sincere acknowledgement means so much!

In the age of Social Media and superficial communication, we can still reach deep into our hearts and find the best ways to reach out and to let a person know that they are special and that you appreciate the interaction with them that has occurred. It takes so little effort and can mean so much. If nothing else, “Pay it Forward” and show you “CARE!” Let’s start a chain reaction of Gratitude, acceptance, and appreciation which can light up our world!

YOU are a Blessing! You are Perfect! The world needs you and your amazing life! Go out and shine brightly on all the lifeforms you bump into… The Divine Spirit burns brightly within you and YOU are much greater than you can ever imagine!

If gratitude is important and if you are READY 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

The Holidays Are Here! Live in Gratitude

Well here we are again in the “Holidays!” Some consider these the “Holidaze!” You are a Miracle! You are a Blessing! You can live in Joy and Gratitude! SO, do it!

As the days grow shorter in the Northern Hemisphere it is again time to go within and take stock of what is “working” in your life. Sure, you have challenges BUT even these are a blessing. These are the reason we came into this life! We came to learn and to grow and to bounce around with other incarnated souls. We are here to share the wisdom of the experiences we have survived. Consider how YOU can take your heart and soul out each day to be of service. Support all the other “pilgrims” you meet along your way. Look deep into their eyes and “Know” that they ARE YOU, in a different life, learning their lessons and moving toward OUR goal of full enlightenment.

If you want to “Serve,” be sincere and simply ask the next person meet, as openly as you can be, “How are YOU doing?” AND, listen! Listen for the challenge that they are working to learn from and love them for the struggle…. Which we all know we must go through…. Be the loving and caring person they needed to bump into this day!!!

Sure, the Holidaze also include excessive expense of time, money, and energy in time when we really want to hibernate. Yes, we bump against all kinds of things that can irritate. But, we can also find and celebrate “GRATITUDE” for all the amazing things we have had to accomplish this past year. So, when Winter Solstice (in the Northern Hemisphere) strikes us in the December 20’s, know that this will signal the re-birth of the cycle of life, with the sun gradually returning to allow Spring to burst forth (eventually) and give another cycle of seasons to learn and to LOVE.

Live in Joy and Gratitude. Share your wisdom, your passions, and your brilliant Soul! Be as amazing as you are!

If you have 3 minutes, enjoy and share the short video on Gratitude in these Holidaze on YouTube at:
https://youtu.be/QAvENmic7IA

If you are looking for a supportive community where you can share your story and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey. You are a Blessing. You are a Master.

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

Learning from Loss and Tragedy

Have you ever suffered a loss? Of course, who hasn’t? Even if this loss was a “Tragedy,” was there some benefit from the lesson you had to learn?

Every human has suffered from a loss? The loss of a job. The loss of a relationship. The loss of money or property. The loss of your innocence. The loss of a loved one, a friend, a parent, a sibling, a close family member, or a child can be a difficult, if not devastating, challenge. The most difficult group I ever had to speak with was a support group for parents who had lost their child. Many in this group were suffering. Some even after many, many years after the death. A parent’s grief is especially difficult.

My reason in writing this blog comes from my own experience with loss and grief. I seemed to manage with the death of my father when I was 35 years old. My mother passed when I was almost 51. I thought I knew something about loss and grief. The greatest lesson was when my life partner, wife, and friend, Barbara, passed away from Ovarian Cancer when I was 61. I thought that I was prepared because we had 8.5 years after receiving her “terminal” diagnosis. My naivety protected me right up until the reality of the “void” set in… It took me one year before I could even began to look at the trauma this health challenge and loss of my wife had manifested within me. Some people get angry, bitter, sad, or anxious. For me, the loss of my partner of nearly 30 years was a vacuum that could not be filled.

Today, 4.5 years later, I realize the amazing blessing I have received from this valuable lesson. The blessing comes from learning much about myself, grief, and the empathy I developed from this painful personal lesson. With surprise, I have grown from the experience of this “misfortune” as I realize the new perspective on life and even the “joy” that came from the ashes of a loss.

Sheryl Sandberg speaks about her appreciation and the lessons of gratitude she learned from losing her husband, suddenly, to an unexpected cardiac incident. Her speech at the 2016 UC Berkeley Commencement was removed from youtube however, know that I was moved to tears as I listened to her story.

“When life gives you lemons, learn to make lemonade,” the old saying goes. But finding your strength and resilience from a difficult loss can provide you with one of life’s greatest challenges and benefits. Learn, accept, and share the lessons. (Remember, you learn best by sharing your story AND you can be of service as you help to create awareness in those who you offer your experience.) When you “KNOW” the value of surviving your loss, you can move on to other lessons in this life.

Life is precious. Joy and Gratitude can be derived from unexpected appreciations of even the darkest moments. Learn from your challenges and reach around to assist other pilgrims as we move along the pathway of our lives.

Blessings.

Share this blog, if appropriate. More support for your spiritual development can be found at the Masters of the Journey website: www.mastersofthejourney.com or at the Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney

By the way, if you want to explore more information regarding death and dying, consider reading the many books written regarding Near Death Experiences (NDE’s) which can shed light on the situation your departed person experiences but offers little for your personal grief created by the void generated from the loss of your “Loved” one. In doing this research, it allows me to gain spiritual insight which helps me to live more easily in a state of grace.

Please take good care of yourself!

Getting Spiritual

You are on a path which leads you, in your own unique way, toward the lessons and the purpose for your life. Whether you know this or not, you are here for a reason and your path leads to the experience you require to move toward mastery of your challenges and lessons. Every interaction is a step along your way toward spiritual consciousness. Every person who blesses your life is a fellow traveler and participant in your enlightenment. You may never consciously know the importance to your development, even if you treat every interaction with each fellow pilgrim with the same respect you would give an audience with God. Many advanced masters believe that everyone you meet is God and we are all “One” with all lifeforms and so we must treat every living thing as a foundational piece of “Ourselves.” (With that said, “Be Humble, demonstrate Humility because you were once (in some past lifetime) a lowly Newt.)

When we reach out to our “higher selves,” we find the connection which allow us to feel the oneness and connection with all life and all consciousness.

We are all in this together. You are unique and you must find the path that leads you to the experience you require. The good events and the most challenging events are the flowers from the garden of life you are meant to harvest to create the bouquet of higher consciousness placing these into the vase of your pilgrimage. So, though your path looks like you are plodding alone, in fact, you are a part of the “River of Life” and one with all others. Your graduation in spiritual consciousness is connected to the spiritual success of all. Reach around and take the hands of all the fellow pilgrims you meet along your way. We must all cross the finish line together.

Your struggle is the “point.” Learn to love the struggle. Bask in the delight of the insights these struggles provide. Accept and Love each interaction. Release your fear, especially your fears of the ultimate transition which we all must embrace. In case you do not know this, death is NOT the enemy. It is the freeing experience which leads to a release from the constraints of your current mind and body! Learn to feel and then follow your guidance! You are loved. You are Blessed! You are Safe! And, you are Free! (Thanks for this inspiration, Brother Bob Trask!)

Be Love. Share Love. Live Love! Bask in the warmth of unconditional love… You will remember how. And then, remember the Divine Spirit within your Heart and Your Soul!

Be Grateful and know gratitude, for you are further along your path and you were once a snail…

With Love and Blessings. Your Masters of the Journey, stumbling but “Gettin’ Spiritual” founder, John

www.mastersofthejourney.com and www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney

Find a way to be of service and go out and do GOOD in the world. You ARE a Master so share your wisdoms and insights!

Finally, Live in Joy! Follow your Bliss. Have Fun! AND, do NOT take your spiritual growth TOO seriously. The people with the most wisdom find laughter close to the surface. Celebrate life!