As I sit to write this post, I realize feeling free in my verbal and written expression actually requires an effort on my part. It does not necessarily come so easily. For me, it requires real focused attention. I have to make an effort to get in my body, connect to my heart, and then wait for the the truth of my being to start to flow. It does take effort. Ironically, I first must remind myself of the fact that I am simply manifesting the energy of my being and do not necessarily need to know anything in particular in order to communicate. It helps me feel liberated in knowing that whatever I want to say is not my responsibility to think up, but simply emerges out of alignment to my own source. As I start letting go in this way, I have to keep refocusing and reconnecting to my source, and checking in with my awareness to see if I am connected or not. I have to attempt to connect, let go, and then reconnect, as I work at nurturing my alignment. Once I am able to maintain a consistent connection, and I know this through my awareness, I am able to see what I want to say. From there I feel free to express whatever shows up. From here I am good, I am whole, and I am complete in what I say and do. It is as simple as that. There is no complication about it. I just connect and allow the truth to flow through me, regardless of what anyone says, or does. I express with no fear of judgment, ridicule, or retaliation. I am outside the bounds of self judgment. I am outside the bounds of what anyone might think or say. This feels good, and is the essence of peace and of freedom. From here there is no fear or blockage, there is only the simplicity of who I really am. Ultimately speaking, I am pretty simple – I am just a being, and I am just being me, whatever that is, and that in and of itself is all that is necessary for my contentment and the truth to flow.
Here at the Sanctuary we work at living by our four principles, “Gratitude, Kindness, Commitment, Lightness”. Today we’ll talk about commitment. What do we mean when we say commitment? What are we referring to? Commitment to what?
The first obvious answer is simply a commitment to live by these principles, a commitment to to act and speak with gratitude and kindness and lightness. While we may attempt to cultivate these states, in reality they are the natural states of being that effortlessly emerge from us when we are connected to our inner being and source. Once we understand this, then we are brought to the deeper realization that we must commit to stay connected to our inner being source if we want to manifest these qualities in the world.
There is much that is involved in being able to stay in that state of connection and aligment. When we commit to staying connected to our source, we find that we are naturally able to express in ways that embody gratitude, kindness and lightness almost effortlessly, but how do we stay connected? As in all things, the answer comes through using our awareness. So that brings us to another commitment, the willingness to look and see the truth.
First we must recognize that we are spiritual beings manifesting our expressions through these material bodies, and that we have developed personalities or egos to be able to express and navigate in this world. These egoic structures play a necessary role. They allow us survival and social interaction, but they also allow our spiritual essence to be expressed in this dimension. So the ego is a good and necessary thing just as our body is good and necessary thing.
The problem is that within our egoic structure there are many beliefs, ideas, constructs, and patterns that interfere with the beauty and clear expression of our spiritual essence. Because of our upbringing, training and conditioning our egoic self on the one hand gives us an avenue for functioning in the world, but on the other can also interfere and block the expression of our spirit. When we are blocked in this way it does not feel good! This is what we call suffering.
Given that situation, we must decide, choose, and make another level of commitment to clear these blocks and interfering patterns from within the ego so that our spirits may express more freely and expansively through us. The clearer and freer the ego the more spirit can come through.
So there are ever increasing levels of commitment to be discovered. At this level we are referring to the commitment to clear the egoic structure so that spirit can express its beautiful nature. As we let go of these patterns we find ourselves more free and at peace. We find ourselves more able to be in a world without conflict and struggle. We find ourselves channeling what is true, and just simply being.
So as it turns out, commitment is an ever expanding field requiring us to commit again and again to whatever takes us farther into the evolution of our consciousness. What new levels of commitment are waiting for us next? As we commitment to become more conscious and aware, there will be new and exciting commitments to make.
Navigating life with all its emotionally ladened content is extremely difficult. We react emotionally to everything we think or that is projected towards us. If someone attacks us verbally or challenges our thinking or beliefs we can get defensive, attack back, suppress or collapse. These are typical ego responses that we all learned in our families and communities, but they are not our only choices. There is this amazing thing we can work on and do to steer our ship and stay on track as we move through the choppy waves of life. It has been called many things: staying clear, staying centered, staying present, staying grounded, being nonreactive, and so forth. The question is, how do we do this? How can we practice this in our daily lives so that we can stay true to who we are and what we believe and stay in that real and wholesome feeling state regardless of what people are saying and doing around us?? I have been working on this for quite some time, and here is what I have come to. By always keeping some part of my awareness connected to sensing my body while I think, speak, or act I can maintain a better sense of balance and composure. By consciously staying connected to my body I can feel more connected to something bigger and vaster than my little ego and mind. I actually think differently when I am connected to my body like this. This allows me to ride the waves of the troubled waters I find myself in. So stay consciously aware and connected to some part of your body. It is not only your vehicle for navigating this dimension, it is also your vehicle for connecting to your higher Self and the peace and clarity that emanates from there.
So we just taught a class this weekend and I experienced more presence and awareness in my teaching. What a wonderful experience! That means that somehow I let go of more of my interfering patterns and was able allow that state of simple awareness and spaciousness to come through. In the moments when I am able to sit in this space, as in this moment, I am aware that I love being here, even though there are parts of me, personality and egoic parts, that fight against being here. It’s crazy because it feels so good to be here! Why would any part of myself fight against this when I love it? It is so quiet and peaceful, and I am not even in the deepest presence I have ever felt, and yet this is so good! Being in this wonderful and simple consciousness feels like home. If I could describe this, it would be to say, I am clear. I have visual clarity and a broader awareness of my energy and space. I feel connected. I feel focused and non-emotional, and in this moment I am simply choosing words which best describe my experience. I am choosing to stay in the energy of just feeling and just experiencing and not thinking. When my will is aligned like this, it is very simple, but there are definitely times of conflict within me. In this blog I get to describe the presence I am sitting in. All the emotions that I have ever felt are still somewhere around me, but in this moment they are not within me, and that feels like calmness. I don’t have to push or punish myself or do anything to motivate myself. Because in this place I am naturally motivated. So I invite you too to choose to find this place within yourself and just be aware, open and accepting of whatever shows up, even if it is the noise of your mind. For as you become aware of that noise, if you can accept that you can’t change it but just allow a little space around it without judgment or shoulds, it will eventually pass, and all will be well.
So things are finally beginning to change in your life. You are more aware. You are less reactive, and you keep your balance more consistently.This is good, right? This is what you wanted, right? Now what?
Now more than ever it is important to stay aware of what is happening within you. Recognize that your thinking is not all that important. It is mostly just useless chatter that keeps the ego engaged. So try this: Just look, just feel, and Just observe. Sit back without analyzing, without judging and processing everything that comes into your field of awareness. What does that feel like?
One technique for doing this non-doing is to move your awareness out of the front of your eyes and look at what you are doing with your peripheral vision. Then feel your arms, legs and feet, and then connect to your heart. A release breath should come spontaneously. Try it. It feels better right?
Taking this moment is no big deal. It’s simple and yet how often do we do it? Again feel what that feels like when you do that. What changes? Do things feel easier? Do they feel better? Is there less reactive energy happening? The ego loves the drama, the problems and the stress, but peace is so nice. Don’t you like the ease? Don’t you like the simplicity?
Do you really prefer the feelings of stress? What do you want to accomplish in your life? Do you want to accomplish a lot of stuff and get a lot done, or be at peace while you fulfill the things that you find important? It’s time to set your priorities. What’s more important, getting a lot of stuff done, or feeling connected? You can still do things, but try it from this more detached and open place. When you do this life feels worth living and more meaningful. So that’s my practice for today.