Tag Archives: meditation

Soul-full encounters on the journey

I raced the sun. Drove west into the darkness that rested above the peaks lining the far horizon while behind me, pink light streaked across the sky, lighting up day’s beginning. By the time I reached Canmore, an hour west of the city, the sun had won the race. Day had broken.

I was driving towards a day of retreat. A day to meditate in group on the beauty and synchronicity of being within a circle, grounded, connected, at One.

It has been awhile since I joined my meditation group. Life. Excuses. Piled up piles of busy-making lists have all intervened in my commitment to join the group to be of service through silent contemplation of our collective power to create peace, love and joy in the world.

As written in The Rule of St. Benedict, “always begin again“.

I begin again.

To connect to group. To be part of a weekly commitment to join the circle and delve into the silence, and the wonder, of what is waiting to reveal itself when I quit doing, doing, doing and allow myself the grace of being. Present, at one, at peace with where I am, connected to the soul-full synergy of my fellow travellers on this journey of Life.

It was a beautiful day. A joyful and playful encounter. A graceful reminder to stop. Breathe. Listen. Feel.

And to begin again.

I am grateful.

There is no yearning copy

Moments of quiet make a difference

Every morning  I awake, make coffee, let the cat in, the dog out, meditate, write my “Miracles Happen” list, respond to emails, comments etc., and write my blog, and when I have time, read other blogs and make comments there. And then, four days of the week, I get ready to leave the house to face my day.

That’s my morning ritual, except, lately, the meditation part has taken a back seat, it’s slipped from my mental landscape — and that’s not a good thing. I need to meditate. The world needs me to meditate. Meditation soothes my soul, raises my spirits and creates space for miracles everyday.

So…. what is it that keeps me from doing something that is good for me? Something I know makes a difference in the quality of my day?

Exercise. Meditation. Eating healthily. Calling my mother. Journalling. Taking my vitamins.

All of these things feed my soul. All of them use my time wisely. What is it that keeps me from spending time on them?

I read a story recently about a man who was a very ‘famous’ thief. During his career he stole an estimated $10 million in jewellery and other valuables from people on the social register. Unlike Robin Hood of eras past, he did not steal from the rich to give to the poor, he simply stole from the rich because they had more to steal. He was caught, spent 25 years in jail and when released, got a job in a burger joint. That was his life.

When interviewed by a reporter he said he realized, in hindsight, he didn’t just steal from the rich, he stole from himself. He stole his future, the things he could have done to make a difference in the world, the things he might have done to be different in the world.

And he couldn’t get that time back.

When I don’t meditate in the morning, or write in my journal at night, or take my vitamins or any of the other, good for me self-care things I don’t do — I can’t get the lost time, nor the lost benefits of the activity back. I am stealing my well-being from me.

And that makes a difference I don’t want to make in my life. Because when I don’t take positive care of me, I am not creating the greatest possibilities for awe and wonder and beauty in my world each day.

If you don’t meditate, or simply sit in silent contemplation every morning for a few minutes, try this…

Make a commitment that for the next week, starting right now — always begin where you’re at — that you will stop, close your eyes (if your hands on the keyboard simply leave them there, the key is to simply STOP what you’re doing and be still).

Now, deep breath. In. Out. Deep breath. In. Out.

Keep breathing. Relax your shoulders. Your neck. Your body.

Close your eyes!

Focus on your breathing. In……. Out….. In….. Out…..

Focus on the feeling of the air coming in through your nostrils, notice its coolness. Notice how it fills your lungs. Breathe. Slowly. In…. Out….

Count ten breaths in and out. Follow the flow of ten breaths in and out.

Now, open your eyes and continue on.

Do that every day — to begin with, once a day for ten breaths. But, try to add a couple of more exercises throughout the day. Do it three times a day if possible — but commit to doing it once a day for a week.

And then, next week, double the breaths. In….. Out…. 20 times

And if one day you forget, Begin again. Always begin again.

See. I just did it and I feel the benefits of the quiet flowing within me. I feel positive energy moving with grace and ease throughout my being.

Try it. It will make a difference.

and now, I’m off to take my vitamins.

Gotta go. The day is calling me to approach in wild-eyed wonder to the beauty of every moment unfolding with miracles of life all around.

Namaste.

Doing the hard

It began with the effortless. Have coffee with a young man, Des, who inspired by my TEDxCalgary talk in November, wanted to chat about volunteering and making a difference. Chatting with Des I felt awed by his commitment to volunteering, and to creating opportunities to raise funds for the charities he supports. And, I came away with a great idea for my daughters and I to make a difference together (more on that at another date!)

Meeting with Des I was reminded — giving is receiving

An hour of my time and one green tea latte later and I came away excited about how powerful we are as human beings to create positive change in the world.

The hard didn’t come until later. A conversation with a cohort lead to confirmation of comments someone else is making that cast a negative light on something I was involved with. I was hurt. Angry. Saddened. Confused. And when I’m confused, my victim’s voice gets active… What’s in it for them to attempt to disparage me? Why do they…? Why can’t they…? In my victim’s place I put my focus on ‘them’ and take it off where it belongs — on what I’m doing, thinking, saying.

I had an option. Let those thoughts eat away at my peace of mind. Let myself become embroiled in, ‘how could they’, ‘well I never’, “wait ’til I get even’ thinking, or breathe deeply and consciously focus my thinking on creating what I want more of in this world — peace, harmony, love, joy.

It wasn’t easy. I wanted to lash out. To stamp my feet and scream about the injustice, not to mention wrongness, of what is being said. But, to do that would undermine my integrity. It would create disharmony  in my world, and thus, send out ripples of discord to the world around me.

And I don’t want to do that. I don’t want to create shockwaves of unease. I want to create ripples of kindness.

And so I did the only thing I knew I could to make a difference within me. I meditated and held this  situation in healing light.

What others do is never about me. What I do is about me. And I cannot do my best when I am focused on what other’s are doing. I can only do my best when I focus on me and accept, my best is good enough.

Fighting fire with fire only engulfs me in the flames. Healing torched ground takes tender loving care and so, I opted to cast light on the darkness, to shed love on the pain. I feel better when I put my energy on creating a world of difference within me. A difference that I intend to let ripple out in waves of kindness as I move through my day.

Making a difference isn’t about what I do. It’s about the choices I make to create a world of difference in and around me. And sometimes, that requires my letting go of the easy and doing ‘the hard’.