AYURVEDASUBSCRIBE to the NEWSLETTER!
Coffeytalk on Facebook
Coffeytalk on Twitter
Coffeytalk on Youtube
Coffeytalk on Instagram
Coffeytalk on Amazon
Coffeytalk on Spotify
Lissa Coffey on Vibe
Lissa Coffey Podcasts on iTunes Connect
buttonlayer2
18 Mar

Love in the Time of Corona

The world is in a challenging place. Our lives have been shifted into uncharted territory as the latest Corona Virus, Covid-19, reaps havoc with economies, societies, and global balance. Rather humbling to have the world grind to a halt by a sub-microscopic piece of genetic material. Scientific definitions aside, we are called to respond to a scenario that sources – often the media – deem calamitous at best, catastrophic at worst. Yet I propose a different perspective, one that is not fear driven but, instead, more gracious and magnanimous.

First of all, fear does nothing useful. It numbs the mind and fuels reactive, panic-based self-centeredness. Consider a spark landing amidst a dry pine forest. Fire erupts and undoubtedly must be contained. Fearful responses are like winds that whip the blaze into an unfettered inferno. Reasoned strategies contain, control, and ultimately eliminate the threat. Our behaviors – which arise first in thought – determine whether Corona will gain further destructive power or, alternately, provide opportunities to ennoble us.

The spiritual world is not separate from the physical. It is the subtle canvas upon which the picture of matter is painted. We, however, get to choose and express the color palate it manifests through our thoughts and deeds. One set of choices results in a gloriously expansive masterpiece; another depicts the cruel hues of defeatism, depression, and self-centeredness. Each of us selects our contribution to the painting by how we respond to what’s before us, moment by moment, day by day.

Naturally, I advocate for making this an opportunity to shine. I know times are difficult, especially for those who are ill or economically deprived. Life often isn’t easy but it’s always impacted by choices. Giving in to the temptation to shrink, to withdraw, to focus on “us four and no more” is a perfect recipe for social/global dysfunction that could be avoided by different choices, by conscious opposition to whatever is contractive. Counter fear with courage, panic with calmness, and meanness with generosity.

There is a reason why spiritual traditions discuss proper attitudes and behaviors. It’s because we need how-to-live principles that apply to all circumstances, good and bad. Why is this important? Because we thrive or suffer according to how well we adhere to, or violate, the laws of natural order. Yes, I snuck spirituality into the mix. Ironically, one needn’t subscribe to any faith to acknowledge that harmony is preferable to inharmony; love, joy, and peace more attractive than hate, despair, or violence. This is common sense. Life-enhancing behaviors promote personal well-being and social good. That said, what can we do in the face of the current situation? I’ll make several suggestions yet preface all by this counsel, “Do that which ennobles, expands, and assists. Refrain from that which diminishes, constricts, or deprives.” Hopefully these points will seem reasonable and easily put into practice.

Start with the body/mind. Be prudent and socially responsible, but not fearful. Fear compromises the immune system and, in the case of a contagious disease, is self-defeating. We’ve all read the news to understand issues and responses. Add to these whatever promotes health from the inside out: Proper hygiene, diet, and, as amenable, immune-enhancing supplements. Exercise, get fresh air and sunshine. Yes, breathe deeply. Relax. Stress and tension deplete energy so if you can, practice skills designed to recharge and renew. This may sound esoteric but such are common in yoga, tai chi, or chi gung circles. A genuine smile is said to distribute life force – prana/chi – to every body cell. The happy person is less subject to disease since happiness attracts a greater supply of life energy into the body. Maintaining a positive, joyful attitude is exactly the right thing to do. Fast from worry. Watch comedies, laugh, practice appreciation and gratitude. You’d be amazed how deprivation can highlight the abundance we ordinarily overlook, or help foster insights about things we might take for granted. A grateful heart is a powerful force, as is compassion. Unfortunately, people have been encouraged to stockpile. This generates a mentality that prompts a secondary ‘illness,’ greed. If everyone considered the needs of others they’d re-visit the desire to hoard. We have an abundance of goods that will remain if we don’t participate in frenzied buying. While at the store recognize that excess buying may cause another to go without. Get what you require so others can too. Seem simplistic? It is. This isn’t astrophysics; it’s consideration. Just as a micro-organism can bring the world to a halt, so basic expressions of loving kindness can help the wheels of global order continue moving smoothly.

Lastly, yet most importantly, nourish the inner being. What frees people from suffering? Will money do so? Will toilet paper? Ultimately, nothing material can. Only direct experience of ones’ soul nature provides this. The world perpetuates dramas to enforce spiritual truths. One of these is that faith in Spirit is a divine law. A smooth life isn’t necessarily a victorious life. No matter if sickness or death dance about you, do not be discouraged. Earthly life is an ephemeral existence; lasting reality is spiritual not material. Be helpful and learn to see the Divine in all regardless of race or creed; love everyone as your own. Selfishness cramps the soul in a limiting prison of material desire. Concentrate on the human family without restrictions. Do your part to improve the world but don’t be bound by its troubles or you’ll be ensnared by them; that’s the secret of victory over delusion. And, pray. Thought is a force. When it is focused on the Divine and directed with beneficial intent for the healing of individuals, societies, or the planet, a tremendous power is released. Although subtle in nature, the vibrations of spirituality and healing generated by prayer engender positive changes in the subtle realms that ultimately manifest in positive material outcomes. Whether confronted by a pandemic or not, the right path in life is always to include others in your welfare. By serving all you serve your Self and, in this fashion, emerge triumphant over trials.

Share this
31 Jan

Signs from the Angels

An excerpt from The Angel Experiment by Corin Grillo

While some people think of angels as being sweet, loving, heavenly beings who sit around singing and playing the harp, in The Angel Experiment: A 21-Day Magical Adventure to Heal Your Life, author Corin Grillo assures readers that angels are actually powerful allies who are always available to help them manifest the health, wealth, and life of their dreams.

The Angel Experiment is based on a popular 21-day course Grillo has been offering only since 2015, with miraculous results.  It outlines a nonreligious, yet highly spiritual, step-by-step method for working with the angels in just five to ten minutes a day for 21 days.  The book’s guided daily meditations and invocations offer readers a tangible experience of how angels can help hem manifest the life they truly desire. We hope you’ll enjoy this excerpt from the book.

# # #

 

People often get impatient when they begin consciously working with angels because they want a big, juicy, explosive first encounter with their angels. If you are someone who is waiting for Archangel Michael to make a 3-D appearance in your room, giant wings ablaze and angel choirs singing in the background, then you may be waiting a while. Though I am a huge fan of big and juicy angel encounters, from the years of doing this work for myself and others, I know that the angels don’t always come through that way.

 

Patience is required when working with angels, and so is managing your expectations. Those are two big keys in allowing angel messages to come through.

No Coincidences

Before I teach you the different ways that angels communicate with you, there is one thought that I want you to delete from your consciousness. This thought will absolutely block you from the reality of angels and miracles, so it’s important that you get rid of it once and for all.

 

The thought is “That was just a coincidence.”

 

The angels are master manifesters, and when you begin talking to them, they will do everything in their power to let you know they are real and right there with you.

 

Your angels send you signs of love, comfort, and even protection all the time, but one of the main reasons you may not have noticed them is because you may have been telling yourself all along that every cool thing that happens to you is “just a coincidence.” This one thought will suck your angel magic dry fast, so get rid of it from here on out.

 

Let’s reimagine this whole “coincidence” nonsense together. Have you ever turned on the radio and the song that came on had a message in it that was just what you needed to hear? Have you ever had a magical solution to a problem appear out of nowhere just in the nick of time? Have you ever met someone in such a weird way that it just seemed to be kismet?

 

Take a moment now to think of some of the more unexplainable and magical things that have happened to you that you might have written off as coincidences. When you add them all together, they start building a picture that doesn’t seem like coincidence at all. These little things can happen to you daily. They can be large or small, and if you dismiss them, you are missing the golden truth: that you are not alone. Your angels are listening to you, supporting you, and actively helping you whenever and wherever they can.

 

From now on, know that every so-called coincidence is actually help and support from your angels and the divine. If you master this one mental shift, your life will open up to a magical world that has been hiding from you in plain sight: the world of the miraculous.

Subtle Angel Signs: Intuition and Your Intuitive Senses

Angel signs won’t always look like what you might expect them to look like. Sometimes they will be big and loud, but other times they will be subtle and soft. The key to being able to recognize those signs, and to receiving the angels’ love and clear guidance as a result, is to tap into your gut instincts and your subtle senses, also known as your intuition.

 

We all have intuition, whether we are aware of it or not. Your intuition is like a muscle, and the more you flex it, the greater it grows.

 

Listening to your intuition and your intuitive senses is the most important skill you can learn in working with angels. Your intuition holds the voice of your soul, your song, and your essence. It’s through your intuition, your thoughts, and your feelings that the angels pass on amazing loving guidance. I don’t want you to miss this guidance, because you could be missing pure gold.

 

Most people in the West haven’t had much practice in flexing the muscle of their subtle senses, because Western culture tends to place a much heavier emphasis on logic and linear thinking than on intuitive, heart-centered consciousness. We in the West are so used to overidentifying with our loud, tantrum-like logical mind that we often completely overlook the awesomeness that is our intuition. And when I say “awesome,” I mean awesome!

 

It takes some practice, but if all you did was slow down and learn to listen to the still, small voice of your heart, instead of that wild pack of wolves in your head, life would go a lot more smoothly.

 

There is no better time than the present to begin learning to develop and trust your subtler senses.

 

# # #

Corin Grillo is the author of The Angel Experiment and founder of the Angel Alchemy Academy. A trained psychotherapist, angel channel, healer, and teacher, Corin has helped thousands of people all over the world go from angel-curious to angel-powered. She lives in Northern California. Visit her online at http://www.CorinGrillo.com.

 

Excerpted from the book The Angel Experiment. Copyright ©2019 by Corin Grillo. Printed with permission from New World Library — www.newworldlibrary.com.

Share this
28 Jan

What I Am (and You Are Too!)

I feel I am a conscious entity in which a simulation, constituting of gross and subtle objects/things, is appearing. The gross (aka physical) objects include a body and a world entering through the sense organs, in the form of gross sights, sounds and sensations. The subtle objects include thoughts and emotions (that are also just thoughts loaded with feelings) in the form of subtle sights, sounds and sensations. These objects are appearing directly in me, otherwise I would not have been able to know/experience them. It’s important to note that even though I experience a body and a world directly, I do not experience a so-called mind (which is actually a composite term used for the mind-intellect-memory-ego combo) directly. The mind-composite is only implied by the type of thoughts that appear in me. To clarify, I do not experience any specific object that I can point to and say that is the mind or the intellect or the memory or the ego. The mind is implied due to some of the thoughts being reactionary and habitual, the intellect is implied due to some of the thoughts being intelligent and analytical, the memory is implied due to some of the thoughts being of past remembrances, and the ego is implied due to some of the thoughts containing an “I” or “my” identity. I only experience these thoughts directly, along with the corresponding parts of the brain that feel active or affected during those thoughts, and never the mind-composite directly.

I further feel that the simulation that is appearing in me is just that – an appearance. I am actually untouched and unaffected by it. Even though I experience certain sensations that can be labeled as pleasant or unpleasant, they are just gross objects appearing in me but they do not affect me. Certain sensations are felt in the body like the feelings of hunger, thirst, itch, ache, etc.. And what we call mental feelings are also nothing but physical sensations felt in the brain tissues. E.g. the feeling of stress is just some brain tissues getting overly strained due to lot of thinking and the feeling of anger is just some brain tissues getting overly heated. So all mental feelings are nothing but physical sensations of brain tissues which are also sometimes accompanied with certain bodily sensations like palpitations, sweating, shallow/rapid breathing, etc. All these sensations just appear in me as gross objects and I am untouched by them. I am just a witness of them. I am like a screen that is unaffected by the movie playing on it, irrespective of how pleasant or unpleasant the movie might be.

When the objective appearances vanish and the simulation stops in deep absorption, I experience my real nature as pure existence-consciousness-bliss (sat-chit-ananda). I do not feel any limitation of time, space, object, etc. in that state. This makes me believe that I am actually unlimited and formless but the simulation imposes an artificial feeling of being contained within a body form with all corresponding limitations. Other people also report similar simulatory experiences, but these simulations are not completely independent. They seem to share common gross objects and events which leads to the conclusion there is just one underlying reality. You, I and others are actually that one reality and not separate entities.

So, even though I am one infinite partless reality, I somehow seem to experience countless parallel simulations simultaneously as separate individuals – each forming a different viewpoint of one big simulation called the universe. It seems like the universe is one gigantic stream of events flowing constantly from one moment to another, and that I know everything that is to be known in this universe from different viewpoints. The individual simulations seem to represent different cross-sections of the universe as experienced from the viewpoints of different individuals. Or maybe there are only these individual simulations and the feeling of one universe is only incidental as these simulations seem to be interconnected sharing common gross objects and events. In either case, I am one reality of the nature of existence-consciousness-bliss with an uncanny ability of generating and focusing at countless simulations and experiencing them simultaneously and separately.

But why should I be doing this? Why can I not just remain as pure existence-consciousness-bliss without generating and experiencing these simulations within me?

Here’s the best explanation I have found:

Take the case of the eyes as an illustration. Their nature is to see. Now consider the sky. It’s so vast it cannot be seen in entirety by these tiny eyes. But when you turn your head upwards, the eyes try to see that which cannot be seen in entirety. The result is an error and the sky looks like a hemispherical dome (which it is not) to the eyes. In the same way, the nature of consciousness is to experience, so it tries to experience the one and only reality that actually exists which is itself. But the reality is infinite and not experiencable in entirety. When there is an attempt to experience the inexperiencable, an error is generated in the form of countless interconnected simulations – each with an experiencer, various experienced objects and their corresponding experiences. The consciousness aspect of the reality appears more prominently as the experiencers, the existence aspect appears more prominently as the experienced objects, and the bliss aspect appears more prominently as the corresponding experiences. So all these countless simulations are just an error produced by the very nature of the infinite reality trying to experience itself. These simulations manifest the infinite reality in a finite way so the consciousness of the experiencers, the existence of the experienced objects, and the bliss in the experiences are all finite, of varying degrees and transient instead of being infinite and permanent. Moreover, since infinite consciousness also implies infinite intelligence, these simulations are of very high quality following various types of laws both at micro and macro cosmic levels with lot of systematism and interconnectedness. They are so flawless and well-structured that they appear to be very real. But it’s important to note that these simulations are absolutely harmless as they are not actually real and are just appearances in the one unblemished reality that I am (and everyone is)!

Another question that might arise is that once this understanding of being the one infinite reality dawns upon a particular individual, what makes him/her continue to experience the simulation and act through a body?

The answer is quite simple. The appearance of experience and action is just part of the simulation and going on of its own accord. The infinite reality is not actually doing anything deliberately. The simulations simply appear in it by its very nature and keep going, irrespective of whether the understanding of being the one underlying reality has dawned upon a particular individual or not. The only difference it would make is that the actions of an individual after this understanding has dawned would appear to be in accordance with that understanding.

Note: You can replace all the occurrences of words “I” & “me” with “you” and “my” with “your” in the above article and it will still be true! I am just trying to take a step back from the apparent simulation and revel in the underlying reality which you, I and everyone actually is. I would highly encourage you to try it too. Its extremely liberating!

(This article was cross-posted from happinessjourney.net/post/190519907835/what-i-am-and-you-are-too)

Share this
06 Jan

The Many Benefits of Meditation

Meditation is really the best thing we can do for our overall health – and all it takes is our commitment to actually do it. Seriously – you don’t need any special gear, or any special place, or any special time to do it. We just have to make the slightest bit of effort to sit still and be quiet. But yet – even though we know how great it is for us, somehow we find every excuse not to do it. What’s that about? Here’s hoping this list of just some of the amazing benefits will motivate us to carve out just a few minutes of time in our otherwise busy day to embrace the bliss of this beautiful practice. This is the best habit you could ever adopt!

 

– Meditation is a great antidote for stress. With our hectic schedules our nervous system runs high on adrenaline. Meditation gives us a time to pause and just chill. Meditation lowers levels of cortisol, the hormone that makes us feel stressed. With reduced cortisol we feel less anxious, less depressed and generally more calm.

 

– Meditation puts a smile on your face. When you meditate, serotonin is produced in your nerve cells. You feel a little more content, a little more centered, a little more comfortable in your own skin. And this good mood shows – you look better, too!

 

– Meditation helps with focus and concentration. With a calm mind you can handle tasks with aplomb. You can pay attention, and be more aware of what you are doing so you can do it well. This also helps to improve your memory, you remember what you did!

 

– Meditation is good for the body. Studies show that it lowers blood pressure, and can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. It can even boost your immunity, so you can stave off illnesses more easily.

 

– Meditation helps you to be more patient, and more present. When in a long line at the store, or stuck in traffic, you can approach the situation with a sense of “this too shall pass.”

 

– Meditation helps you to release negative emotions more quickly. Instead of hanging on to anger or upset, you can process the feelings and let them go more easily.

 

– Meditation helps you to manage pain. With less anxiety, you can tolerate pain better. You learn how to breathe through the pain with meditation so you feel it less acutely. Meditation teaches us to self-sooth.

 

– Meditators have an easier time falling asleep, and often sleep more soundly than most.

 

– Meditation can improve relationships. It’s easier to communicate when you are calm and can think clearly. It also teaches us to look at our thought patterns so when emotions arise we can identify and deal with them.

 

– Meditation helps us to connect with who we really are. That space of silence is where all the wisdom is, and we can download it where we give ourselves the opportunities to do so.

 

– Meditation is good for the brain. Research shows it can slow the aging process and even reverse brain aging.

 

– Meditation can rev up your metabolism. We feel better so we have more energy and move more. All this helps with weight loss, too.

 

– Meditation helps you to forgive and let go of past issues with people. You feel more peaceful and can see the bigger picture. It allows you to feel more empathy. It allows you to let in gratitude.

 

 

Share this
03 Sep

The Four Friends

“The Four Friends” is an ancient fable that the Buddha repeated to teach the value of respect for one another. The lesson we can learn from this is that when there is harmony, there is also happiness.

 

Long, long ago, there was a pheasant would eat fruit, and then spit out the seeds. A small sapling grew from one of those seeds. That sapling then grew into a small tree that bore fruits, and the pheasant happily ate them.

 

Then, as the tree grew bigger, since the pheasant had difficulty flying, he could no longer reach the fruit.

 

A rabbit arrived, and said to the pheasant: “Neither of us can reach the fruit. Let me lift you so you can pluck the fruits, and we can share them.” The pheasant agreed, and the two enjoyed the fruits of the tree.

 

As the tree grew bigger, the fruit became out of their reach.

 

A monkey came by and agreed to help the rabbit and the pheasant. The monkey lifted the rabbit, and the rabbit lifted the pheasant, and the three all shared the fruits.

 

But then, the tree grew even bigger still.

 

Finally, an elephant arrived on the scene, and joined in to help the other three. The elephant lifted the monkey, the monkey lifted the rabbit, and the rabbit lifted the pheasant. Now, however high the tree grew, they could always reach the fruits!

 

These four friends became good examples to others in the forest. The bird taught other birds to be good. The elephant taught those with fangs to help others, and the rabbit taught the creatures with paws to do their part, and the monkey taught those with fur to do good for others. Eventually, the small group influenced even human beings by their example of cooperation, despite differences in size, strength or even species. By working together, the four friends learned the value of unity, integrity, friendship, generosity, and selflessness for the greater good.

 

The Four Friends, or Thumpa Punshi, is a familiar theme in paintings, curtains, thangkas and walls in Buddhist temples and homes. It is thought that wherever this picture is displayed harmony will increase. The picture acts as a reminder of how we should stay together and help each other. We all have various strengths and challenges, and yet we can complement one another to accomplish those things that we cannot achieve alone.

The Four Friends. I got this picture from allposters.com – I have a canvas print hanging in my home!

 

“Respect should be freely given to all simply because all have Buddha-nature, because all can become Buddhas.” – Stonepeace

Share this
15 Jun

The Eight Steps of Love on Every Breath

An excerpt from LOVE ON EVERY BREATH by Lama Palden Drolma

At this time, when our human family is facing many challenges, it is more important than ever that we find peace and sustenance in our hearts. In the new book Love on Every Breath: Tonglen Meditation for Transforming Pain into Joy, author Lama Palden Drolma introduces a profound, ancient meditation that has been practiced in isolated mountain retreats in the Himalayas for centuries, which is now available to the modern world.

In the standard Tonglen, the meditator simply breathes in the suffering of others and then breathes out love and compassion to them, but this approach does not always work well for Westerners, who often find it difficult to get past the ego’s roadblocks. That is why Lama Palden prefers to teach the more user-friendly “Love on Every Breath” variation to Westerners, which comes from the Shangpa lineage of two enlightened women.

We hope you’ll enjoy this excerpt from the book.

# # #

Love on Every Breath is an ancient Tibetan Buddhist Vajrayana meditation from the Shangpa lineage that combines breath, awareness, imagination, and an energetic transformation process. The meditation brings all these components together in a powerful way in order to open our hearts, to reveal and cultivate our kindness, love, compassion, and wisdom. In Tibetan, this is called the Extraordinary Tonglen, since it uses special techniques of Vajrayana to transform suffering. The Tibetan word tonglen is composed of two words — tong means “giving or sending,” and len means “receiving or taking.” First, we open ourselves to receive and feel the suffering of ourselves and others, breathing it into our heart center. This is the “taking.” The suffering is then instantaneously and effortlessly liberated in the heart and transformed by a special method into unconditional love. At this point, on the out-breath, love and healing energy are sent back out to whomever you are doing the meditation for at the moment, whether yourself or another. This is the “sending.”

The primary purpose of the Love on Every Breath meditation is to cultivate our love and compassion, to transform and liberate our heart. When we come from a place of love, everything shifts for us. This book gives you the tools to transform and empower yourself and come to a place of creative engaged freedom.

The Love on Every Breath meditation is not an exotic Himalayan practice, but it is something that emerges out of us spontaneously and naturally. It is inherent in us to want to remove suffering — others’ or our own. The problem for many children (and adults) is that we absorb the suffering of others, and then it stagnates inside of us. Love on Every Breath gives a way for the suffering to be liberated in the body and the psyche and emerge as compassion. There is a felt sense as this happens.

 

The Eight Steps of Love on Every Breath

The Love on Every Breath meditation has eight steps. The complete meditation is done as a sitting practice and takes about forty-five minutes to an hour from start to finish, but the practice is highly adaptable and can be easily abbreviated.

 

Here is a brief description of each step. In step 1, Resting in Open Awareness, we let go of everything. We let go of the past and the future; we let go of any and all ideas about ourselves or others; we completely let go into our bodies and into relaxing. We become aware of our mind so that we don’t allow it to wander into thinking. Rather, we stay present with what is. Usually, the easiest way to do this is to join our attention and breath. This anchors us in our body, and in our felt sensations, instead of in our thoughts. This is a doorway into calm abiding. We simply rest in awareness and openness; openness is synonymous with emptiness.

 

In step 2, Seeking Refuge in Awakened Sanctuary, we go for refuge, for sanctuary, to the awakened ones. This helps create a context and the space for our meditation. We also ask the buddhas and other awakened beings to support us during our meditation.

 

In step 3, Cultivating Awakened Mind, we engender the altruistic intention to fully awaken to be able to help liberate all beings from suffering.

 

In the fourth step, Stepping into Love, we invite an awakened being, traditionally Chenrezig, the Bodhisattva of Compassion, to be present above the crown of our head.

 

Following our heartfelt prayers, Chenrezig dissolves into ourselves, and we meditate that we become inseparable from Chenrezig. The awakened mind is then established in the heart center as a crystal vajra of light, which is a symbol of the indestructible, pure luminous empty reality of who we truly are, our buddha nature. The vajra is what transforms the suffering — not our individual personality or ego. This saves our ego from saying, “I don’t want to take in more suffering! I have enough of my own!”

 

The Vajra that Appears in our Heart Center

 

In the fifth step, Taking and Sending for Yourself, we imagine our ordinary self in front of us and contemplate our pain and wounds, meeting ourselves with loving awareness. We breathe in our suffering as a dark smoke-like substance, breathing it right into our heart center. As soon as it touches the vajra of light, we visualize a lightning bolt arising from the vajra, transforming all suffering into white light, symbolic of unconditional awakened love and healing energy. When we are breathing out, this white light goes into the heart center of our ordinary self, where it heals, illuminates, and awakens.

 

In the sixth step, Taking and Sending for Others, we meditate on a loved one, and gradually we include others. As in the previous step, we contemplate their suffering, big and small, see it as dark smoke, and breathe it into the vajra in our heart. When the suffering touches the vajra, it is instantly transformed. Then, on the out-breath, we imagine the white light going into the person or people, filling them with light and healing, and eventually bringing about their awakening.

 

Chenrezig, together with the vajra of awakening, greatly enlarges our capacity to welcome the suffering and transform it. Slowly we expand our meditation out to various people and groups of people, until finally all beings are included. We rest in the love and joy of all of us awakened together.

 

Step 7, Dissolving, involves dissolving our visualization, completely letting go, and resting in open awareness. Then in step 8, Dedicating, we dedicate any and all benefit of our meditation to the awakening of all beings.

 

# # #

 

Lama Palden Drolma is the author of Love on Every Breath. A licensed psychotherapist, spiritual teacher, and coach, she has studied Buddhism in the Himalayas with some of the most preeminent Tibetan masters of the twentieth century. Following a traditional three-year retreat under his guidance, Kalu Rinpoche authorized her to become one of the first Western lamas. She subsequently founded the Sukhasiddhi Foundation, a Tibetan Buddhist teaching center in Fairfax, California. Visit her online at http://www.lamapalden.org.

 

Excerpted from the book Love on Every Breath. Copyright © 2019 by Lama Palden Drolma. Printed with permission from New World Library — www.newworldlibrary.com.

Share this
08 May

Proper Attitude Towards Adversity

The past year has been fraught with changes and challenges. My wife retired due to health issues and I decided to close my office in order to help with her needs. In addition, I have been dealing with nerve damage resulting from a serious bout of shingles two years ago. Seems like we entered a season of life where such things happen, but, c’est la vie.

There is nothing on the spiritual path that can be separated from learning and lessons. Regardless of how much we may prefer alternate circumstances, the appropriate attitude is understanding how we can change in the face of adversity, not how life can be made more accommodating. It is said that yogis learn to be even-minded in the midst of life’s ups and downs. That has always seemed like cookie-cutter commentary to me but the reality is, it’s true.

When we identify with the body and life around us, we subject ourselves to the consciousness of being the body, the mind, and so forth. We identify with the world. This is not the correct spiritual perspective. The reality is we are souls inhabiting bodies. When we identify as children of the Divine we allow ourselves to engage with Spirit as heirs to the Kingdom, not mortal beggars subject to the will o’the wisp of fate.

The only way to accomplish this is to change our ‘center of gravity’ from dependency on outer gratification to realization of the soul’s qualities within. When able to touch and grasp a joy or peace that is independent of external causation, we realize more clearly our soul nature. Life continues to hammer these lessons home until we finally get them. The lesson plan may differ for everyone but it’s there. And even then the process may not cease. Why? Because this is a world of duality; wherever there is an up, there must be a corresponding down. Learning to be anchored within through meditation is a must; a grace and necessity cultivated through spiritual practice.

This doesn’t mean – as in my case – that we’ve perfected the art of living, but, we have a better handle on meaning, purpose, and method. Talk is cheap but life does not brook nonsense. Unless and until we take spiritual practices seriously, we remain at the mercy of whatever comes next. Yogananda counseled disciples to not take this life too seriously. He was right. It can be a torment to those who do, an entertaining drama – with ups and downs – to those who recognize it as a spiritual play. This doesn’t disqualify one from being human and feeling, rather, it helps one learn that both can be spiritualized to a higher standard. Looking at life through the lens of wisdom allows one to seek and see God in everything; to surrender to what’s trying to happen while simultaneously doing your best to remedy untoward circumstances. In short, learning to be even-minded and cheerful amidst upheaval by virtue of being anchored in and associated with the fruits of the soul.

As Spring is a season of rebirth and renewal, I invite you to delve more deeply into who and what you are, the essence of Spirit. There is no down-side to this exploration. Rather, it is an investment that pays great dividends when the winds of outer life shift from balmy to blustery. Seek the Kingdom within; realize the truth of your eternal Self, and you shall be increasingly comforted then, finally, free.

Blessings to you all.

Share this
17 Apr

Intuition: Your Soul Signals

An excerpt from Energy Speaks by Lee Harris

Most of us intuitively feel that reality contains a spiritual dimension hidden from our five senses. For author Lee Harris, that spiritual dimension became startlingly real one day when he began communicating with “the Zs,” a group of nonphysical beings from another plane of reality. At first, Lee dismissed the Zs as figments of his imagination, but they spoke with such wisdom and compassion that he became convinced of their existence. He quickly discovered that they had profound insights to offer into the big issues facing all of us: relationships, prosperity, health, and more.

 

In Energy Speaks: Messages from Spirit on Living, Loving, and, Harris distills the Zs’ wisdom into a concise and practical guide for conscious living that promises that each one of us is an irreplaceable part of something much greater than ourselves, and that help is always available to us from unexpected sources. We hope you’ll enjoy this excerpt from the book.

 

# # #

 

Our destiny is being reframed and reshaped every day depending on how we show up: The truths we tell. The choices we make. The willingness to grow and change.

 

Destiny says, “Okay, we’ll give her this new boyfriend to help her get over the boyfriend she was with a year ago.”

 

You start to date that new guy, but then you meet someone else, too — someone who is a lot more like your old boyfriend.

 

So this is the choice point. You’re offered an upgrade boyfriend or the old pattern.

 

This time, you choose the old pattern. You choose what is your habit.

 

Now, even though it’s not going so well with the old pattern in a new form, it’s familiar. In a little bit of time, either you get to the point where you say, “You know what? I’ve already done this relationship dynamic before. Thank you. You’re very nice, but this is not for me.” Or your resolve crumbles and you go back into your comfort zone.

 

Six months later, you’re looking sickly and have run out of energy. You’re turning up at events holding the hand of the more predictable boyfriend, and your friends are nervous to say anything to you (kind of like you were with Jill). Your last boyfriend was a bit tricky, and they don’t want to get in the middle of that again. Meanwhile, you’re just going down, down, down, inside your own soul. Stuck in the habit.

 

It doesn’t have to go that way. Your destiny path is constantly signaling you through your intuition. The beauty of intuition is that it’s like a GPS installed by your soul — constantly rerouting and rewiring you based on your choices. It’s calibrating you to more and more courage and honesty. It’s leading you to greater empowerment and freedom of being and expression.

 

Of course, following your intuition doesn’t mean that every wish is going to come true, that every situation is going to work out the way you first envision it, or that the path will be clear of all obstacles. Well, I had this intuition that I was going to be Joe Smith’s girlfriend. So what happens inside you when being with Joe Smith isn’t what plays out for you? Do you decide that your intuition isn’t trustworthy? Do you mistreat yourself in some way? Or are you kind to yourself around the disappointments and hurts that you sometimes feel? Do you recognize that the situation has changed, and so, too, can you?

 

We get attached to various pathways, destinations, and outcomes. And we forget that the only attachment our soul has is to our growth. All it wants to know is: are we growing and expanding? Our soul doesn’t say, “Yes, she needs to marry that woman named Yvonne, and it will all be great! Gay marriage is on the way, so that will work out well. They’re going to have a house in Birmingham, and they’re going to have three kids.” No. The soul is overseeing the deeper undercurrents of transformation, less focused on the specifics. “She needs to experience empowered love without restriction.”

 

Destiny says:

We put Yvonne there for her, and she didn’t pick Yvonne. And while there was a possibility that she would stay with Yvonne, she walked away from Yvonne after a month because she was not quite ready for that depth of love. She chose the next one in line so she could see how painful her relationships can be when her choices aren’t aligned with her innermost being, and she stayed with that person for six months until she got sick.

We are constantly redirecting and being redirected. And learning to tune our dial to the frequency of our intuition makes for a more fun-filled journey…no matter how many twists and turns there are along the way.

 

# # #

 

Lee Harris the author of Energy Speaks: Messages from Spirit on Living, Loving, and Awakening. He is also an intuitive medium, transformational leader, musician, and visual artist. In 2004, he began holding channeling sessions and readings in his home, and today he leads workshops throughout the world. A native of England, he is now based in California. Visit him online at https://www.leeharrisenergy.com.

 

Excerpted from the book Energy Speaks. Copyright ©2019 by Lee Harris. Printed with permission from New World Library — www.newworldlibrary.com.

Share this
03 Apr

You Have to Believe it to See it

An excerpt from Signs from the Other Side by Bill Philipps

Who hasn’t wished they could ask a departed loved one for advice, heal an unresolved rift, or even just ask where their grandmother’s strand of pearls is hidden? The best psychic mediums know what solace such messages can provide. They also know that communication with those on the other side can be cultivated by anyone with a sincere and open heart.

 

In Signs from the Other Side: Opening to the Spirit World (New World Library, March 5, 2019), beloved psychic medium Bill Philipps illuminates all of this for readers by demystifying what he does and providing step-by-step guidance that allows readers to receive afterlife communications themselves. We hope you’ll enjoy this excerpt from the book.

 

# # #

 

I invited my dad to brunch one recent Sunday afternoon. We haven’t always had the closest relationship, but fortunately it has strengthened with time. After a delicious meal and rich conversation, we were saying our goodbyes in the restaurant parking lot when a beautiful white butterfly fluttered our way. It danced in front of us, then circled us multiple times. It was obvious, at least to me, that it was trying to get our attention. I knew there was nothing random about its presence.

 

“Look at that,” I said. “Mom is letting us know she is here with us.” A split second after those words spilled from my mouth, I cringed. Why did I just say that out loud?

 

Faint hope, I guess. I braced myself for Dad’s reply.

 

“Yes, she is,” he said with sincerity in his voice as his eyes followed the butterfly’s path.

 

I was stunned. And joyful beyond measure.

 

Anytime I had ever talked about receiving signs or other information from the spirit world, Dad laughed, joked, or scoffed. For personal and religious reasons, he never could understand why I had passed on a surefire career as an opera singer in favor of one as a psychic medium. In his defense, what parent wouldn’t find that incomprehensible? That’s why those three words from him were such a breakthrough in his mind-set and in our relationship.

 

He knew that since Mom’s death in 1999, when I was just fourteen years old, I had believed that white butterflies were a sign from her that she was with me. I don’t know on this day in the parking lot how much Dad truly believed it, but it appeared he had at least unlocked his mind and heart to entertain the possibility that she was responsible.

 

And that is exactly how every opportunity to receive a sign from someone who has crossed over to the next life must begin.

 

Each day, spirits are trying to connect with us to help us make decisions, find meaning in our lives, or navigate through difficult times. They try to create that link in a multitude of ways, such as with animals, electricity, music, dates, numbers, dreams, and coins. They repeatedly dangle these things right in front of us, and though we see them, we usually consider them nothing more than ordinary objects or coincidences that have no significant meaning in our lives. That’s because we don’t know how to view them as something more, or we simply don’t believe.

 

How often have you made a decision based on a gut feeling? Isn’t the result of your decision usually the one you had hoped for or expected? And how often have you said to yourself, “Something is telling me I should [or shouldn’t] do this”? That “something” is your innate psychic ability, commonly known as intuition. It is a God-given gift that is seized upon by the spirit world to help guide you in your earthly journey.

 

What we often fail to realize is that even though a dead person’s body is gone, their spirit is not. Their soul lives, not just in heaven but on earth. Sure, we may comfort ourselves by saying that we know they are around us or that we feel their energy, but do we truly believe they are present in our lives to the extent that they can communicate directly with us from the beyond at any moment?

 

They are, and they can.

 

If your first reaction is “I need to see it to believe it,” make a couple of adjustments to that phrase and you’ll be right on track: “I need to believe it to see it.”

 

One day, when I was trying to navigate through some difficulties in my life and desperately longed for my mom, I asked her to show me a sign that she was with me. Believing that she would, and paying close attention to my surroundings, I was expecting to see the usual white butterfly. But instead, I received something much more definitive.

 

The next day I found myself driving behind a car with a license plate that read “YVONNE” — my mom’s name. Not only is that a relatively uncommon name, but there are millions of registered vehicles in the vast state of California and only one with that plate. How did I end up in that exact place on the road at that precise moment behind that car the day after I had asked for a sign? Coincidence? No way. I think my chances of winning the lottery might have been better. Signs from the spirit world are literally everywhere. Fortunately, I was in a frame of mind that enabled me to recognize one.

 

In a world fraught with uncertainty, people are often searching for guidance in an earthly form but struggling to find it, so they are turning more and more to the “other side” for help. I witness it daily from those who reach out to me for readings or advice, many of them desperate to connect with a loved one who has passed. But the good news is that you don’t need me to make that connection. Yes, with a gifted medium as a conduit, communication between you and the spirit world will be much clearer. But neither I nor any other medium can be that conduit for everyone all the time. That is why if you believe in the intuition you were born with and are open to the possibilities, the spirits will take care of the rest directly with you.

 

# # #

 

Psychic Medium Bill Philipps is the author of Signs from the Other Side and Expect the Unexpected. His life’s mission is to help people deal with the grief of losing loved ones by bringing through validations, evidential information, and beautiful messages from Spirit, which heal and bring a sense of peace. Visit him online at www.billphilipps.com.

 

Excerpted from the book Signs from the Other Side. Copyright ©2019 by Bill Philipps. Printed with permission from New World Library — www.newworldlibrary.com.

Share this
23 Feb

Strengthen the Higher Self

An excerpt from Feed Your Soul by Carly Pollack

There are countless diets, cleanses, and 30-day challenges all geared to help people lose weight, heal their digestion, and feel more energy. Yet, these temporary protocols fall short when it comes to true transformation. With all of the nutrition guidance available, why do millions of people weigh more than they want and feel anxious and depressed about it?

 

Nutrition expert Carly Pollack lived this vicious cycle until trial and error, and over a decade of academic study and self-healing, led her to the incredible insights she’s shared with thousands. In Feed Your Soul: Nutritional Wisdom to Lose Weight Permanently and Live Fulfilled, she presents her unique understanding of body science, brain wiring, and spiritual principles to facilitate real, long-term change. We hope you’ll enjoy this short excerpt from the book.

 

# # #

 

Before you can regain control of your thoughts, beliefs, and emotional state, you must first take a closer look at your internal guidance system. Two different voices are guiding you, and although they both sound like you, one is a much pushier, more obnoxious version and therefore steals most of your attention. This loud voice comes from your monkey mind, which I simply call the “mind” and many spiritual teachers call the “ego.”

 

The mind developed as a way to protect us; it was a means of survival. It helped us avoid danger and kept us alive by continually warning us of what could go wrong. As we have evolved as a species, the mind, sadly, has not. Think of it as an outdated computer that drives you crazy more than it helps you get things done. Now, I’m not saying the mind doesn’t step up in life-or-death situations. I’m talking about the other 99.999 percent of the time here.

 

The mind creates chaos through fear, judgment, comparison, and negativity. Its favorite diatribe is the one that convinces us of scarcity. We aren’t pretty, skinny, or rich enough. There isn’t enough time in the day, there aren’t enough good people in the world, and we don’t have enough willpower to make things happen. Whatever the heck it is, there just isn’t enough of it!

 

The mind’s second favorite story is that something is happening or has happened to us that “shouldn’t be” happening (or “shouldn’t have” happened). It convinces us that we aren’t supposed to have problems — and when we do, the mind creates massive suffering. The mind is excellent at dress-rehearsing a worst-case scenario. It finds a way to judge and blame as much as possible. If you aren’t judging someone else, then you are judging yourself. This constant uninvited commentary is the background of your every waking moment. From the minute you open your eyes to the moment your head hits the pillow, your mind does not shut up. Yeah, mind, I’m calling you out big-time, and I’m telling you to take a backseat; and PS, nobody likes you.

 

Luckily, there is a second guiding voice, and this one comes from your heart and soul, otherwise referred to as your intuition, true self, or inner wisdom. I like to call this voice my “higher self” because it triggers me to think about what I would say to myself if I were holding myself in the highest regard. Find a name for this place of wisdom that feels good to you, and begin to call on this voice to take the upper hand. Your higher self comes through in a whisper, a gentle guidance. It is always kind, compassionate, and loving. This voice lives only in the present moment, and it is available to us anytime we can quiet the mind enough to hear it. From this place, we are never arguing with “what is” because we are living in the moment, making new decisions as they arise.

 

Close your eyes right now (well, after you read these instructions) and place your right hand on your belly and your left hand over your heart. Take three slow, deep breaths. Now ask yourself gently, “What does my higher self have to say about this issue?” If you don’t hear anything right away, simply say, “I’m willing to slow down my mind and make room for my highest wisdom to come through.”

 

Because your mind has taken center stage for most of your life, it may take some practice to get your higher self to begin speaking up. Next time you are in a place of mental anguish, prompt yourself with the following questions:

 

  • What would I tell my best friend in this situation? What would be my sage advice?
  • Could this mean something different? What if the opposite of what I’m thinking is true?
  • What would love do? What would love say?
  • What do I think my future self (twenty years from now) would tell me about this problem or situation?

 

Listening to your higher self is the first step to taking back control from the mind. Witnessing your thoughts without giving in to them, while stepping back and deciding what you choose to think, is one of the most powerful tools you have for living a joyful life. If you control your mind, you control your plate. If you control your plate, you take back control of your body and your health.

 

# # #

 

Carly Pollack is the author of Feed Your Soul and is the founder of Nutritional Wisdom, a thriving private practice based in Austin, Texas. A Certified Clinical Nutritionist with a master’s degree in holistic nutrition, Carly has been awarded Best Nutritionist in Austin five years running and has helped over 10,000 people achieve their health and happiness goals. Visit her online at www.carlypollack.com

 

Excerpted from the book Feed Your Soul. Copyright ©2019 by Carly Pollack. Printed with permission from New World Library — www.newworldlibrary.com.

 

Share this