The Ego Has Landed

Image by John Hain from Pixabay

We read in The Science of Mind, “Live, love and laugh! Let the heart be glad and free, rejoice in the thought of life and be happy.” As spiritual Beings it is our Divine Right to be happy. But because we are spiritual Beings, and absolutely free to choose how we will experience this physical environment, we are free to choose not to be happy. We live in a world that appears to have power to limit our love and laughter, to cause our heart to be sad, and to keep us from feeling inspired by the thought of life. It’s up to us to choose differently. The gift of this Earth life is that through its contrasts we can discover that we are the Power that either limits or allows our self to feel alive, to freely express love, and to laugh wholeheartedly. Abraham-Hicks tells us, “The only freedom that exists in all the universe and it is everything is in the knowledge that we create our own reality and that we can feel the way we choose to feel.”

We would all agree that this human environment appears to us as shadow and light, as pairs of opposites, as duality, and as a whole lot of diversity in individual self-expression. And, even though we may think we want sameness, homogeneity and uniformity, and that we’d rather everyone think, speak and act as we do, we are living in the very conditions we were all looking for when we decided to be born into a physical body that appears to be separate from everything else. We knew that without the appearance of duality and diversity, we would not have an opportunity to exercise our power and freedom to choose, and to grow spiritually through our choices.

We read in The Way of Transformation, “As you create a temporary perceived limitation as a way to call to you a certain quality of experience, there is a tendency to fall into the trap of identifying yourself with the constraints that you have set up from your unlimited freedom in order to have a temporary learning experience.” Earth life is a temporary experience designed by us to learn within. It may appear we gave up our freedom as spiritual Beings to become temporary human beings, but we remain spiritual Beings behind our appearance as separate humans—One with Spirit and One with each other.

If that weren’t so, if Spirit were not backing us up, we would not appear at all because nothing in the physical world can appear without the spiritual Power that allows it to appear. We aren’t now, and could never be, separate from the God of our Creation, not here and not anywhere else, because there is nothing but God in every direction including our direction. In the Book of Psalms we read, “If I ascend into heaven, thou art there; if I descend into Hell, behold, thou art there also.” Heaven and Hell are states of conscious awareness within the One Consciousness of Life. Heaven and Hell are temporary experiences of the mind created by the choices we make. We ascend into Heaven or descend into Hell with every thought we choose to believe is true, and with every decision we make based on what we believe.

That is why the Power of Choice is not a freedom to be taken lightly. If we’re not paying attention, and consciously aware that we remain Spiritual in this world we made together for purpose of spiritual growth, it’s easy for us to get trapped in the limitations of the three-dimensional world and forget there so much more to us than our physical body, and so much more to life than what we perceive with our physical eyes. However, we may look at our individual life today and wonder what we were thinking when we were choosing! As the saying goes, “Be careful what you ask for,” and be clear when you ask that you deserve what you truly want because what you will receive will perfectly match your thoughts of either constraint or freedom.

There are a lot of ideas about what the ego is, and whether we should smash it and get rid it or embrace it and love it as part of our creation. Abraham-Hicks tells us, “Your ego is your physical focuser. If you did not have this egotistical ability to focus, you would not be of any advantage to the Non-physical Energy of the Universe and your Inner Being. It’s not having the ego that is the problem, it’s using it to talk about what you don’t want.” The ego is part of the plan. It can see duality. It can perceive limitation. We’ve created it from our unlimited freedom to help us decide what we want. When we choose, our Inner Being grows and expands by attracting whatever it is to us and becoming the very presence of it within us.

Many of us grew up believing that to feel confident and proud of our self was egotistical and a bad thing, that to believe we can do anything we choose to do is to be being “full of our self” and not modest or humble enough. But being full of our Self is a beautiful thing to be full of because who we are now, and who we’ve always been, is the living expression of Christ, the very Self of God that is beyond judgement, the very thought of Love in form. In The Way of Transformation we read, “You are in the holiest of temples, your Self. Nothing limits you at all, or at any time. The power of the freedom of choice is the essence of Christ.” That is why Freedom of Choice is so powerful. Every time we choose, whatever choose, and every time we decide to think a thought, whatever thought we think, we are using the essence of Christ in us.

It is only as we forget who we are, and believe we are separate from the Divine Life Force that created us and loves us still, that we experience an ego born of the belief in separation. Every choice we make as a separate self is based on the belief that we are alone and on our own in a world governed by the tenet “every man for himself.” So we struggle and strive to survive. The spiritual Master, Mooji, wrote, “If the feeling ‘I’ is identified with the body and person, then it will be the person’s responsibility to look after their own life. But if the ‘I’ is identified as Consciousness, then it will be Consciousness and the Universe that look after the body.” If we believe the ego is all there is to us when we think and say, ”I Am,” then rather than focusing our mind on what we want with the awareness that the Universe always responds with a “Yes” and will conspire to bring whatever we want to us, instead we’ll use the ego (our focuser) to focus on the world, and ignore the Invisible Universe in which we live as talk about what we don’t want that we have and what we want that we can’t get.

The ego is full of paranoia because it sees a world outside of itself that it believes has power to keep the wanted away, a world that doesn’t have its best interests in mind. The ego is constantly determining what’s safe and what’s not, who’s safe and who’s not, who’s right and who’s not, and what’ s missing from our life and the world around us. The ego is on our side, personally, no matter what. It wants what we want but thinks the world outside of it is the source. It is self-protective. It wants to keep us from getting our feelings hurt and looking foolish, so it will lie (even to us) about what we truly want in order to protect us from disappointment and other people’s opinions of us.

Anytime we are defensive, the ego has landed. Anytime we react to an assumed insult, whether we pout or shout, the ego has landed. Anytime we insist that others agree with us or need to change for us, the ego has landed. Anytime we struggle to get what we want from the world, and feel disappointment or resignation when what we want doesn’t show up when we think it should, the ego has landed. Anytime we think we’re too busy in this world getting what we need, and we don’t think that we have time for spiritual exploration within us, the ego has landed. The ego is so full of spiritual self-denial and self-doubt that it can’t see beyond its own fears. It misses the beauty around it because it is pinched off from the beauty within it. It protects our heart by causing us to be afraid to love, and so we don’t feel love within us to give freely or to return to others who love us. When we’re not feeling Love, when our heart doesn’t feel glad and free, when we don’t rejoice in the thought of life and feel happy, we can be sure the ego has landed.

So do we squash the ego or embrace it with love as our creation? In The Way of Transformation we read, “I once said that if you are not wholly joyous, it could only be because you have elected to use the power of your mind to think differently than your Creator.” Our Creator is Love. Love and judgment are opposites that appear in this world so that we can choose Love over and over again until we think like our Creator. Every moment we have the Power to choose who we are, and that choice determines how we feel about our self, and what we see in others and the world around us. There is only one remedy for judgement and that is Love, the one opposite in this world that resolves all opposites.

We read in The Way of Transformation, “The attempt to embrace creation while judgment is still in the mind is like reaching for carrot at the end of the stick and not being able to reach it.” It is only when we let go of judgment and choose Love and feel our Oneness with God that we are able to embrace all of creation. In that holy awareness the ego dissolves into the Light of the One Love. In the Book of Matthew we read, “If your eye is single your whole body will be filled with light.” Then the ego becomes to us what it was always intended to be, i.e., a persona that can see duality, a focuser that makes it possible for us to use our Power of Choice to focus on the holy, good, and beautiful. When we do, we feel so full of our Self, the Christ in us, that we know for sure that we can do anything we choose to do. We will Love without judgment, aware that all things, including us, exist for Glory of God.

From the Shanti Christo Study Group Papers we read: “Delight in the blessings of time and see not a single moment as that which would imprison you. For there is nothing outside of you, while within you is the absolute freedom of choice given wholly and never earned in which you can look upon the things of time, each event that time seems to require of you, and you can bring the blessing of Christ to it. You can choose to radiate instead of contract. You can choose unlimitedness instead of limitation. You can choose Love instead of fear. That is the great gift of time.”

Are You a Repeat Offender?

Image by Convegni_Ancisa from Pixabay

Ever had an unwanted experience, and the first thought that came to mind was “Why me?” or maybe “How on Earth could this have happened?” or even “This is so unfair.” Abraham-Hicks tells us, “There has never been an injustice anywhere in this physical time/space reality or anywhere else. The Law of Attraction does not promote injustice. It amplifies the vibration that is within you.”

Thoughts are things that vibrate everywhere in this physical time/space reality and everywhere else. Thoughts are impersonal until we make them our own by focusing on them. We could say thoughts are up for grabs, and we get to choose which ones we’ll grab and invite to vibrate within us. And, they’ll do just that, vibrate within us, until we let them go. While we are focused on them, they emit certain vibrations within us that the Law of Attraction amplifies and extends into the forms, expressions and experiences in our life.

A thought is like a cloud that passes by in a blue sky. Clouds come and clouds go, and never affect the sky behind them. Our mind is like a blue sky, and just like clouds, thoughts come. And they would go without affecting us, if we’d let them go. When we let a thought move on no matter what it is, when we let it pass by us or through us without giving it our focused attention by analyzing it, it doesn’t disturb our mind. Eckhart Tolle wrote, “If you can interrupt your inner dialogue for even a moment, you can experience the underlying stillness, the beauty and space that is always undisturbed.”

We are immersed in the Creative Energy of a Universe that, through the Law of Attraction, moves into action for us anytime we think into It, whatever we think into It. Most of us think into It most of the time without interruption, forgetting or unconcerned that all of our thinking-thinking-thinking affects our life because the Law of Attraction is amplifying our thoughts. Our thoughts make our life what it seems to be to us. The idea that our thinking affects our life experience isn’t anything new. This isn’t “New Thought.” The Roman Emperor, Marcus Aurelius, way back in the First Century AD, wrote: “The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.” Jesus said a Century before that, “As you have believed, so it is done.” And, relatively more recently Emerson wrote, “As a man thinketh so is he, and as a man chooseth, so is he.”

Ancient and contemporary spiritual wisdom tells us the same thing: Our thoughts become our life. That’s why it’s such a good idea for us decide to live consciously so that we can “chooseth” how we want to experience as our life. When we invite certain thoughts to stay with us, they emit a vibration that causes something to happen wherever we are. They cause a movement within the Invisible that brings forth eventually, or even immediately, a worldly experience that matches it not only in our personal life, but everywhere a vibration matches own!

It’s been said that “The universe is a continuous web. Touch it at any point and the whole web quivers.” Peaceful thoughts bring peace into the moment we’re thinking peacefully. If we focus on them long enough, their vibration attracts peaceful people and situations into our experience, and also supports expressions of peace in the world. In the same way, angry thoughts bring anger into the moment we’re thinking angry thoughts. If we focus on them long enough, their vibration attracts angry people and situations into our experience, and also supports expressions of anger in the world. We might want to ask our self: “What am I causing to ‘quiver’ in this world.”

There are really only two ways for us to live our life. One is to live consciously, aware of what we’re thinking in the moment we’re thinking it, and aware of how we’re feeling in that moment. In this way we become aware of which thoughts feel good and which do no. Then we can consciously choose to focus on the ones that feel good. Or we can live unconsciously by paying no attention to what we’re thinking or how we’re feeling as we’re thinking. In this way, we abdicate our power to consciously choose how we experience our life. But either way, the focus of our mind is a powerful thing that calls into our experience, through the Law of Attraction, what we call our life. We read in The Science of Mind, “As the Universe is run by an Infinite Mind, so man’s life is controlled by his thinking; ignorance of this keeps him in bondage; knowledge will free him.”

The old adage “You reap what you sow” is a metaphor for the Law of Creation or the Law of Attraction that amplifies the vibration within us and either keeps us prisoner of old thoughts and repetitive experiences, or frees us to experience life today as we choose. We don’t need to go back in time to relive the past. If we’re repeating the same thoughts today that we thought yesterday, and responding in the same way emotionally, those thoughts are keeping the vibration of our past alive in our mind right now as current thought, and the Universe is listening right now and responding. The vibrations we’re emitting today are calling to us more of the same experiences and holding us a prisoner of the past.

We live in the Vibration of Creation. There’s no getting away from our creative power. We are saturated with and within the Creative Flow of Spirit. Thinking that some of our thoughts are private and don’t go any farther than our head, and that they don’t vibrate and create, is like thinking we could be immersed in the ocean and not get wet! How we live with and within the Creative Power of the Universe is up to each of us.

Are you a “repeat offender”? If we’re not sure if we are, it may help to know that the answer to “Why me?” is that our life is what our thoughts continue to make it. The answer to “How on Earth could this have happened?” is that the thoughts we’re thinking are perpetuating what we are experiencing. The anecdote to feeling like a victim of unfairness is to remind our self that the Law of Attraction does not promote injustice. It amplifies the vibration that is within us. We are free to use our power of choice to change the vibration of our thinking. Thoughts that feel good have a high healthy, vibrant vibration. Thinking thoughts that feel good changes our life for the better. But changing our thinking for good takes desire, commitment and consistency.

How many times have we said, “I’m so done with that,” (whatever “that” is—not feeling healthy, happy, worthy, rich, or free), only to pick up right where we left off before making our “I’m so done with that” declaration with the very thoughts that have been causing whatever “that” is to persist in our life. We may pick up where we left off with thoughts of worry about our health that restrict the feeling of well being within us that is the basis of health and healing. Or we may go back to thinking about all those things we’re unhappy about. Or we may get on with our negative self-talk that never fails to keep us from feeling undeserving of something better. Or we may go back to lack by giving our attention to what we don’t have, and how expensive things are. Or we may start counting all over again all those things we have to do that we don’t want to do, things we feel obligated to do that keep us from feeling free. Even though the Divine Source of Life is Unlimited, unless we change our thought vibrations our habitual thoughts will continue to set up a vibratory barrier between us and the life we want to live.

There is a big creative difference between wanting change and being changed. A momentary change in our thinking that feels good is a good start. But we’re simply out on probation until we become the change that changes our life. Our mind is the authority in our life. Nothing changes unless we change our thinking and keep the change. Change begins as we focus on the feeling of joy, peace and satisfaction within us that we believe a physical change would bring about. Then, as we feel the prenatal joy, peace and satisfaction of the life we are creating with our inner focus, the vibration within us changes, and the Law of Attraction amplifies that change as new forms, expressions and experiences in our life.

We read in A Course in Miracles, “There is no world apart from what you wish, and herein lies your ultimate release. Change but your mind on what you want to see and all the world must change accordingly.” The Pure Positive Energy of the Source of all Life is eternally ready in each moment to enrich our life in every way whenever we’re ready to allow It to. We hold the key that opens the prison that has been keeping us captive to habitual thoughts and repetitive experiences. All we have to do is change but our mind on what we want to see and we are free.

Like Father, Like Son

Olya Adamovich from Pixabay

As far as our relationship with our Earthly father goes, we may either be thrilled that we are so much like good old dad, or we may wish the apple had fallen a little farther from tree (or at least rolled a bit afterwards). But as far as our relationship with our Heavenly Father goes, we may not see any resemblance to Him in us at all. But even so, It’s there because His Holy Paternity is everywhere, including right where we are.

In the Book of Genesis we read, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Like Father, Like Son (Like Father, Like Daughter). We could say that we were created in the “Sacred Spitting Image” of God. Nothing true or lasting about us has changed since the beginning. We haven’t fallen near or far from the Tree of Life. If we’re alive, then we’re still attached to the Sacred Branches of that Holy Tree by the Divine Life Force within us that is forever holding onto us and nourishing us with Pure Positive Energy.

When we realize we are still One with the Power that created us, we realize that the Love, Peace and Joy we feel, whenever we feel it, must be coming straight from Its Heavenly Source. In the Book of John we read, “I AM the living GOD, The Vine, and you are the branches; whoever abides with me and I in him, this one brings forth much fruit because without me, you can do nothing.” Our Heavenly Father’s DNA is everywhere because there is no Life without His Cosmic Chromosomes. Without them we could do nothing even when we think we are.

Even within this human experience where we seem to have inherited traits from our parents that we don’t like and wish we hadn’t inherited, even as we express our self humanly in all the ways we do, our true DNA (Divine Natural Attributes) of Love, Peace and Joy that we’ve inherited from our Heavenly Father are encoded within us. The good news is that unlike some Earthly fathers, our Heavenly Father is never angry with us no matter what we do. The wrath of God is an old Biblical concept, one many of us grew up with and tried to hide from. It was, and still is, a misinterpretation of the Law of Attraction that governs the Universe, and responds with perfect creative accuracy to the vibration we are emitting with our thoughts, whether they are positive or negative.

In The Way of the Heart we read, “You live in a field of vibrations and energies that is operated by the law of attraction or resonance.” The Law of Attraction is based upon “Like attracts like”; “What goes around comes around”: and, “What you put out, you get back.” The Law of Attraction is a Force that guides us by letting us know through the conditions, people and situations that come into our life what we’re attracting with our thinking. When we’re emitting negativity vibrationally, what comes around to us, what we attract, and what we get back can sometimes feel like scary punishment though It’s there to guide us.

In the Book of Deuteronomy we read, “Take this scroll of the Law and place it in the side of the Ark of the covenant of LORD JEHOVAH your God, and it will be there a witness for you.” The Law of Attraction creates forms and experiences that “witness” for us the consequences of our thinking. Abraham-Hicks tells us, “To better understand the Law of Attraction, see yourself as a magnet attracting to you the essence of that which you are thinking and feeling.” There is nothing in either of those quotes, ancient or current, about an angry, wrathful God punishing us for wrongdoing.
We simply attract to us, through the Law of Attraction, the consequences of our own thoughts, words and actions. The Law of Attraction isn’t angry when it manifests consequences for us. It responds without judgment to the vibration of our thoughts, and the vibrational intention of our words and actions, and perfectly manifests the results

Even while all of this is going on, it’s important to remember that we haven’t been kicked out of our Father’s House no matter how we’ve behaved. It is the Divine Power of the Father within us, the miraculous molecules of Divinity at the root of our thoughts that give our thoughts power to create, no matter what we’re thinking and no matter what we’re creating. Those same miraculous molecules of Divinity live in every cell of our body and give us the power to heal. They are at the center of our heart and give us the capacity to love everyone and everything. This is the inheritance we are free to live in the world!

In The Way of the Heart we read, “Always remember that the Father looked upon His only creation and said ‘Behold, it is very good!’ That goodness has a name, it is yours! And behold it is very good!” The Father, our Father, the God of Love, the God of Peace, the God of Joy pronounced All that Is as “very good,” and that includes you and me. Because there is only One Father of Creation, and that Father could not look upon His Creation and behold It as very good unless He was looking with eyes of Love, as Holy Sons and Daughters of God we’ve inherited that Love. Love’s Lineage is Everywhere, but we can only perceive It with our heart.

What is true about us, and all Life, remains forever true about all of us no matter what we do. We are Love, now and forever, whether we choose to express the Love we are or not. We read in A Course in Miracles, “Darkness cannot obscure the glory of God’s Son. You stand in light, strong in the sinlessness in which you were created, and in which you will remain throughout eternity.” That means that we and everyone else remain “very good” in Truth. And, it also means that each of us experiences the consequences of our forgetting the goodness of our True Nature.

We have to pay close attention to what feels good within us if we want to discover who God is in us, and live our Godlike Nature in the world. The more attention we give to our Father-Son, Father-Daughter, relationship with the Divine, the closer we’ll feel to our Father. And, the closer we feel our Father, the more we’ll feel like Him. As we pay attention to what feels good within us and allow feeling good to guide us, the more goodness we’ll attract to us and the less negative consequences we’ll require to jolt our memory of who we are.

Like the God of our Creation, we are Unconditional Love. Like our Father, we too are created to behold the very good in all of creation. As we choose to forgive our own ungodly thoughts, and the ungodly behaviors of others, like Father, like Son, we too will be in Love with everyone! We read in The Way of Transformation, “As you proclaim and know in the depth of your being that you are the holy Son of God, you will not settle for less than Heaven on Earth.”

The Only Journey is Within

Image by Okan Caliskan

Deepak Chopra wrote, “The inner journey is about finding your own fullness, something that no one else can find for you or take away from you.” A Course in Miracles tells us that it is a journey without distance, but that doesn’t seem to keep us from trying to find it somewhere outside of us.

It seems that this time of year brings out a restlessness within us that we interpret physically, and then take our body here and there trying to find peace for it somewhere. If we’ve been feeling restless, we might want to ask our self: “What am I seeking to find elsewhere, maybe not in another place but at another time, that I don’t believe I can find within myself right where I am, wherever I am, if I look with for it?”

Sometimes when we can’t find a way to get away—when our life seems too busy, too heavy, too confining, or just too crazy—it seems our body goes through the motions of whatever our day-to-day life seems to be, but there’s no one home in our mind. We’ve mentally escaped somewhere else, to a happier time in the past or an anticipated happier time in the future.

Even though we may know that something in our life is calling for change, so often we don’t want to take a look at what that might be because it might cause us to want something in our life we don’t believe we can have, such as greater health, more peace of mind, more money, more companionship, or more freedom. Abraham-Hicks tells us to “believe in what you want so much it has no choice but to materialize.” It’s never asking too much, and it’s never too late, for us to live a life of day-to-day happiness in a Universe that wants us to as happy as we want to be.

If we were willing to take the time each day to journey within and allow our spirit to rise to a place where we are happy in the moment, no matter what, we would be right where we need to be vibrationally to bring into our physical experience the happy life we want. Abraham-Hicks tells us, “It is not your job to make something happen. Universal Forces are in place for all of that. You’re not manifesting. You’re creating the environment that allows the manifestation.” No work, no effort, no struggle, no sacrifice, just a willingness to be happy on the inside creates an environment for happy people and events to come into our day-to-day life.

Nothing about our surroundings anywhere can permanently change us from the outside in. Rumi wrote, “Know then that the body is merely a garment, go seek the wearer, not the cloak.” We can take the cloak (our body) here and there with the intention of finding peace, but it is only as we journey within that we find a peace that requires no movement at all to be peace in us. The journey within is the only journey that will ever make a difference to us spiritually. It’s the only place we can find a fullness that belongs to us that nothing in the world can take away from us.

The journey within is like going on vacation, but unlike a vacation that benefits us only temporarily, every inner journey creates lasting change in the way we live our day-to-day life. It’s like going camping. We get away from “it all” and find a place that is still, calm and quiet, without having to pack bug spray or anything else for the journey. Physically we can go only so deep, but spiritually there are no limits to what we can discover about self and life, and live now.

In the Book of Luke we read, “Neither will they say, Behold, it is here! Or behold, it is there! For behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” How amazing that right where we are, whereever we are, the kingdom of God is there within us, the Light of Spiritual Truth that is forever within to guide us. No matter how small our physical  body may be, we are one with the Infinity of God within us. Mooji said, “You have to see and meet God in this life. Don’t let this life go by and miss discovering the Supreme One. You’ll find him inside as your constant being.”

To live as if our options for Joy in this Earth life are limited to our physical surroundings is like looking in a mirror and believing we are limited to what we see in the mirror, our own reflection and whatever else the mirror is reflecting. When we focus solely upon the physical world as if it’s outside of us, and we can do nothing to change what we see, it’s like looking in a mirror and not liking our hair, or clothes, or something else that is reflected there, and believing there nothing we can do about it. But, we all know that a mirror is for the sole purpose of reflecting our image so we can see if there is anything we see that we want to change. We don’t expect the mirror to do it!

Wally Famous Amos wrote, “Life is just a mirror, and what you see out there, you must first see inside of you.” The world we see is a reflection of the thoughts we are thinking wherever we are. Life mirrors back to us what we believe about self and our relationship to life. We change what we don’t like by changing how we think, not by waiting for something or someone outside of us to make the change.

If we were to live our day-to-day life with the awareness that everything we experience as the life around us is changeable from within us, we’d stop arguing with the living mirror that is the physical world and look within our self for the inspiration and guidance to change how we see the life around us. It’s been said, “You cannot see your reflection in boiling water. Similarly you cannot see the truth in a state of anger” or in a state of stress, anxiety, worry, defensiveness, or restlessness. “It’s only when the waters are calm that clarity comes.”

There is no mirror big enough, and no physical world full enough, to reflect the infinite life that lives within us. Emerson wrote, “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” Are we going to let this life go by without finding the true spiritual being living within us as us right now—our constant Being, our Divine Self, the only One that is able to meet God in this life wherever we are? Are we going to settle for just being satisfied to find some place in this world where we can go from time-to-time that will remind us temporarily of how good it feels to feel good. Or are we willing to find that place within us, that happy place we can go to everyday and take with us everywhere?

Alan Watts wrote, “Man suffers uniquely because he takes seriously what the gods have created for fun.” Are we having fun yet, or are we waiting for another time or another place before we allow the fun to begin? We are created to feel good all the time. Spirituality isn’t a destination we find from time-time, it is our true nature that we can live all the time. We are so vast and unlimited within us that we’ll never reach the end of our spiritual journey. But we’re not created for an ending, we’re created for an endless adventure of Joyous extension and expansion.

In order for we, human, to interact with each other here on Earth in a healthy way, in a harmonious way, and in a loving way, it is essential for each of us to dissolve our sense of life as being outside of us and separate from the life within us. Rather than searching for an isolated peaceful place in this world we can go, if we’re willing to take a journey within that takes us away from the appearances of this world, we’ll find all we need for happiness here and now. Rumi wrote, “There is a life-force within your soul, seek that life. There is a gem in the mountain of your body, seek that mine. O traveler, if you are in search of that, don’t look outside, look inside yourself and seek that.”

Camp Wannabe

Image by chanwit whanset from Pixabay

Mehmet Murat ildan wrote, “Go for a camping and there both your weary mind and your exhausted body will rise like a morning sun!” Camping can be healing—taking time to watch the sunrise, listening to the sounds of nature, staring at the campfire, watching the sunset, and perhaps in between jumping into a cool lake,  and doing some guiltless reading, relaxing, or napping—can all be refreshing to our mind and body many ways. Camping often takes our focus off of things in our life we don’t want think about, and negative things happening in the world that without TV or other social media we don’t even hear about.

When we go camping, whether it’s camping in a cabin, an RV, or a tent, it is often for the purpose of getting away from it all. A good question to consider might be, “What is ‘the all’ that so many of us want to get away from? What is it about our daily life that makes our mind weary and exhausts our body. What is it about our day to day life that causes us to feel so tired and sick, and sick and tired, that we want to get away from it, if only for a weekend?

John Muir wrote, “And into the forest I go to lose my mind and find my soul.” It’s a beautiful thing to find our soul because our soul is such a beautiful thing to experience. But if coming back to our day to day life after getting away from it causes us to lose touch with our soul again, if we feel restricted, anxious, bored, or weary living the life we call our own, then camping isn’t enough to permanently uplift us or to lastingly change anything about us.

We can’t get away from it all anyway because even if it all isn’t physically present, we take our self, the perceiver of it all, with us. We take our habits of thinking about life, and our habits of reacting to it, wherever we go. As Dr. Seuss put it, “Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.” And, Jon Kabat-Zinn echoed the same thing: “Wherever you go, there you are.” There is nothing about our surroundings anywhere that can change us from the outside in. We take the same self camping that we take to the office or to the market. We take our happiness and our orneriness with us wherever we go and react to our surroundings according to the way we feel at the moment.

It is how we perceive our surroundings that brings out the best in us, the worst in us, or something in between. If we’ve been arguing with our self about something, or arguing with someone else about something, it affects our mood and attitude about everything as long as we remain angry or upset. And, it affects our perception and point of view. In the say way, if we’ve been appreciating our self for no reason, or appreciating someone else for no particular reason, it affects our mood and attitude, as well, about everything as long as we remain appreciative. And, it affects our perception and point of view.

No matter who we may be with and seem to be relating to—our family, friends, coworkers, or strangers—it is the relationship we’re having within us that causes us to feel what we feel about anyone else in any moment. Whatever is going on within us determines our interpretation of what’s going on around us. In other words, how we are feeling affects how we’re seeing what we’re seeing while we’re feeling what we’re feeling. That’s why it is important for us to love the one we’re with wherever we are because that one is always us. The Buddha said, “You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” How much love and affection do we feel for our self in our daily life?

From the beginning of our Earth life, when we first entered the world, we came into an environment of not only contrast but comparison. The humans of the world had been cataloging and pigeonholing everything long before we got here, and they didn’t stop after we came. Once we arrived in 3-D form, we were put into catalogues along with everything else, and often we were put into a pigeonhole that was so small we could hardly breathe.

Our parents were familiar with the catalog-pigeonhole system, so they knew where to put us. We might have been the oldest child, youngest child, middle child, or an only child, and we were treated as if who we were was already determined by where we were in the birth order. We didn’t argue because we thought they knew! We tried so hard to live up to everyone’s expectations of us (high or low) that we began to expect it of us, too. In school we were compared scholastically, athletically, creatively, and in many other ways to other children. Often those comparisons made us wanna be like the children we were compared to, the ones the teachers and coaches and other children liked best. Most of us learned the opposite of appreciation for who we were, the very self we took with us everywhere we went.

If we’re dissatisfied with who we are today it’s because we’re still in the habit of comparing our self to others. We may wanna be as smart, quick-witted, young, healthy, thin, happy, or spiritual as someone else that seems to us to be so much more of those things than we are. We may wanna be pleasing to others, especially those we love. But our desire to wanna be like someone else, to wanna be the one others want us to be, causes us to lose touch with our soul and the beautiful Self we are already. While we’re wanting our life to be like the life of someone else who seems to have a better life than us, while we’re trying so hard to become spiritual, and while we’re wanting to be somewhere else so we’ll feel better about our self and life, we’re missing out on  experiencing the magnificent spiritual self we already are, right where we are.

Abraham-Hicks tells us, “Two things will keep you on the ground forever: Comparing yourself to others and listening to those who want to keep you on the ground with them. Be yourself. Trust in your giftedness, AND SOAR.” If we don’t trust that it is okay to be our self, we won’t discover the gift of our uniqueness that we came to share with the world. When we’re not loving our self, we can’t soar because it is Love that lifts us up. Self-love is never a selfish act or an egotistical act. The ego may be self-protective and self-defensive, but it can’t love us as God loves us. Self-love is an act of surrender to the Love that created us, the Love that loves us just as we are, the Love that wants us to be happy being our Self.

We read in A Course of Love, “Love is the condition of your reality. Love is as essential to your being as the heart to the body.” Self-love allows us to accept our self and our life as it is, and to appreciate who we are wherever we are. When we love being our Self, we free our mind of self-sabotaging beliefs that cause us to be controlled by the fear we’re not enough. Self-love means we don’t feel the need to look for approval from others because we trust that the Universe in which we live already approves of us. Louise Hay wrote, “You’ve been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.”

Self-love causes us to wannabe our Self, and to take care of our mental-emotional-physical health. We’re motivated to let go of whatever isn’t healthy in our day to day life—certain people, activities, a living situation, habits—all those things we’ve allowed to cause us to want to get away from it all. The poet, Aberjhani wrote: “Dare to love yourself as if you were a rainbow with gold at both ends.” If we’re willing to stop judging our self by comparing our self to anyone else, and if we’re willing to shine like the priceless colorful rainbow we are right now (not will be someday or somewhere else), but today right here, we’ll discover that there is no one else we wannabe.