The beauty of December, with its Holy Season celebrating Christ’s birth on Earth through Jesus, is that it gives us the perfect opportunity to remember that the same Christ can be birthed through us too. All Life is Divine. The whole Universe is the Offspring of God, His One Creation, His Perfect Son. The Light of Christ, filled with God’s Holy Love for all creation, is the Life Force within all that exists, including us. We can deny It, we can ignore It, but we can’t live without It. Jesus was the great example, not the great exception, and as we get a better understanding of our true Self we, too, can live as Christ on Earth.
We read in A Course in Miracles, “In his complete identification with the Christ, the perfect Son of God, Jesus became what all of you must be.” Jesus did his part in bringing Christ Light into the world. That Light was so powerful way back then that It still shines today! But now it’s our turn to join that Light and become what we truly must be. The only difference between us and Christ Jesus is that he knew who he was and he lived that Truth undistracted by the world of appearances. If this world is to be transformed, it can only be transformed by the renewing of our mind.
The world needs Christ personified and active as much today as it did 2,000 years ago. We reverently celebrate the birth of Jesus today because we want the Christ Light that came forth through his birth to dissipate the darkness that seems to have fallen over the Earth today. But it’s up to each of us to be the Light Bearer. Christ isn’t going to pop into the world from somewhere else, or pop into our mind without invitation. Sri Sri Ravi Shankar said, “You need to realize that you are scintillating light. You are not just a piece of flesh, bones and blood. You are light. When you understand this, then you will be free from whatever emotional turbulences you have. Serenity will dawn in you and you will get a better understanding of yourself.” Unless we invite the Christ in us to live through us, unless we let that Mind that was in Christ Jesus come alive in our mind, it won’t be possible for us to find Christ anywhere else. The second coming is our coming out party. No one can live the Christ in us, for us.
In The Way of the Heart we read, “You were birthed for greatness. You were birthed to shine forth such light into this world that the world remembers that light is true and darkness is illusion.” As Jesus walked the Earth, his awareness that he was the embodiment of Christ, God’s perfect creation, enabled him to see God’s perfection in the world around him. In his full acceptance of his Sonship with God, and his oneness with all of creation, Christ Jesus caused the shadowy forms, bodies of illness, and the crazy and insane of his day to disappear. Such is the Nature of Light and Its effect upon darkness. Jesus didn’t fight the darkness. His Light caused it to disappear. The world hasn’t gotten any less shadowy, less infected, or less crazy in last that past 2,000 years! It is our time to shine by remembering light is true and darkness is illusion. Such a memory keeps us from fighting the darkness. It keeps us from focusing on what we don’t want and talking to each other about what we don’t like. There is no record of Jesus having conversations with others about his fears he might catch any of the diseases that in those days, so many around him were dripping with. He wasn’t fooled by the appearance of sickness. There is no record of his speaking of the difficulty in forgiving the angry, unloving behaviors of others that were often directed his way. As far as we know he didn’t get all wrapped up in the politics of the day, though he was constantly being accused of breaking the law. He didn’t buy into the limitations that claimed God’s children could ever go unclothed and unfed. The Light of Christ shined so freely and brightly through Jesus because he was without fear, judgment and discrimination. His mind was clear, his words carried healing vibrations, and his actions were the very Presence of Love and Peace.
German writer and statesman, Goethe, wrote: “A man sees in the world what he carries in his heart.” We may want to ask our self, “How does life look to me? What does life reflect back to me about the content of my heart?” Does much of life seem yucky to us? Do we find much of life distasteful these days with so many disagreeable people and behaviors everywhere? When life seems yucky, we spend a lot of time watching our step so we don’t step in anything “unsavory.” We’re all about negative prevention rather than positive attention. When life seems yucky to us we lose our appetite for life. We’re not enthusiastic or interested in learning something new. There is a famous quote from the Broadway play and movie, “Auntie Mame” that goes, “Life is a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death.” Are we starving for something good to enrich our life, but insisting on focusing on the negative stuff? A mind filled with problems brings mental malnutrition. We miss the yummy goodies available to us in every moment of life because we’re not looking for them.
Nisargadatta Maharaj said, “First realize that your world is only a reflection of yourself, and then stop finding fault with the reflection.” That’s like blaming the mirror when we don’t like how we look! Everything we criticize in the world comes from the point of view we carry in our heart, and only we can change what we see. The good news is that when we decide to be more joyful than judgmental, more loving than fearful, and more peaceful than argumentative, life seems yummy and we can’t wait to partake of its richness. We bring enthusiasm to whatever we do. We attract people and events that are delicious to experience. Our individual life is so full and rich we don’t have the time or interest to criticize the preferences of others.
We could say, as Abraham-Hicks does, that rather than life being like a banquet where there are only some choices available to us, life is more like a buffet or smorgasbord where tons of choices are available to us. As we know, a good buffet has lots of things we like to eat, and plenty that we don’t like to eat. But we don’t get frustrated that there are things we don’t want to eat staring at us from the buffet table. We don’t feel compelled to put what we don’t want on our plate. We don’t worry the unwanted food might touch our food. And, we don’t look on the plates of those standing in the buffet line with us and say “eeew” if they choose something we don’t like. We just happily mind our own business and choose what we prefer. The Universe of thought is like an unlimited buffet offering to us an opportunity to choose anything to think about that seems truly delicious to us. We’re never forced to think a yucky thought, a tasteless thought, or an unpalatable thought. We’re always at choice. And since choices for individual thought are unlimited for everyone, and everyone is free to choose, surely there are going to be preferences of thought that others choose that we wouldn’t. But rather than our just happily minding own business, and choosing what we prefer with a “to each his own” attitude, somewhere along the line we’ve confused our preferences with “the only right way.”
What if there were only one color (our favorite), or only one song (our favorite too), or only one type of art and it was the type we prefer? If we were all the same in our human expression—indistinguishable rather than diversified, carbon copies rather than unique reflections of individuality—as much as we think we’d like everyone to be just like us, we’d be bored. We stimulate one another through our diversity, and it is through our choice to follow our own individual preferences, no matter what anyone else thinks or does, that we become aware of our power as a deliberate unique creator of our life. We get to choose the things we like, the thoughts that feel good when we think them, the words that feel good when we say them, and the actions that feel good when we do them. But we can’t exercise our freedom when we’re busy trying to limit the freedom of others.
To fight against each other is to forget that only light is true and darkness is illusion, and in that forgetting we lose sight of the Christ in us and in those around us. Bondage to illusion is yucky. Freedom from illusion is yummy! When we have no desire for anyone to do anything our way, life becomes deliciously free because we’re letting that Mind be in us that was also in Christ Jesus. The Christ Light that lives in us right now, whether we let It shine or not, is the same Radiant Light of Christ that shined so brightly through Jesus as he walked the Earth. We are all children of the Light birthed for greatness, created to create the good, holy and beautiful. We’re free, if we choose to be, to live a delicious life filled with tasty thoughts, sweet words and luscious activities. Papaji said, “You are Happiness. You are Peace. You are Freedom. Be kind to yourself. Open your heart and simply be.” Then, like Jesus, we will become who we must be. The Light of Christ within us will see the Light of Christ in all others, and the world through us will be healed.
As the Thanksgiving month of November ends and we enter into the month of December, let us choose to carry with us a greater awareness of the power and importance of our practicing gratitude and appreciation for our life everyday, and not just on Thanksgiving Day. Every morning we can choose to take time as the sun rises, or as we rise, and say “thank you” for the gift of another day of Earth life. We can decide to take time to stop and smell the roses that bloom all year round in a mind that is filled with happy thoughts and the fragrance of beautiful ideas. We can pause to watch the sunset each evening with gratitude for a day well spent, whether we were housebound or out in the world. But most important of all we can decide to stop and be fully present right where we are, wherever we are—whether we’re alone, or with family, friends, coworkers, or strangers—and no matter what may be going on in that moment we’ll look for something to be grateful for.
Abraham-Hicks tells us, “Look for good things about where you are, and in your state of appreciation you’ll lift all self-imposed limitations (and all limitations are self-imposed) and free yourself for the receiving of wonderful things.” Some moments in our life are so obviously filled with wonderful things that it makes it easy for us to be grateful. Other moments maybe not-so-much. That’s when we need to take a deep breath, and a deeper look, to remind our self that how we respond to life is our choice. Every moment is worth appreciating because we’re alive within it to appreciate it!
It is important for us to be aware of the Powerful Presence of the Universal Law of Attraction. Why? Because It is the organizational Law of the Universe that matches energies with similar energies, including our own. It’s the Law of “like attracts like.” It makes what goes around, come around in our life. The Science of Mind tells us that the Law of Attraction contains all subjective tendencies, i.e., all unseen energies of desire and belief, that are bound to attract. It responds to thought vibrations and causes the forms and expressions to manifest in life. Nothing takes form anywhere without It, including in our life. It matches the vibration of our thoughts with the vibration of similar thoughts. Our thoughts become one with those thoughts, and as those thoughts become one with us they occupy our mind.
Ever notice when you start focusing on a certain thought, positive or negative, more thoughts similar to it come to mind? Maybe you’re thinking appreciatively about some person or event, and then more pleasant thoughts come mind about other people and happy events you’ve experienced. That’s the Law of Attraction in action! When our mind is filled and running over with appreciation, we have a sense of well-being and a good feeling about what might occur in our life next. On the other hand, maybe we’re thinking angry and resentful thoughts about someone or some situation, and then more unpleasant thoughts come to mind about other people and other negative experiences. That, too, is the Law of Attraction in action! And when our mind is filled and running over with anger and resentment, we have a sense of uneasiness and a bad feeling about what might occur in our life next.
The thoughts we focus on repeatedly, positive or negative, become our habits of thought, and our habits of thought become our belief system about life. Our belief system about life gains momentum in our mind with every thought we think, and causes our life to go in a certain direction where certain things happen as our thoughts take form and expression in our life. If we’re practicing appreciation for life every day that’s good news! Gratitude will gain energetic momentum in our life and we’ll attract and be attracted to more to be grateful for-
The Japanese Buddhist priest and writer, Dogen Zenji, wrote, “Continuous practice, day after day, is the most appropriate way of expressing gratitude. This means that you practice continuously without wasting a single day of your life. Why is it so important? Your life today is the outcome of the continuous practice of the past.” Our life today is the outcome of our continuous practice of past thoughts. Whether we’ve been thinking thoughts of gratitude or resentment, peace or anger, health or sickness, happiness or sadness, positivity or negativity, we’ve created our life today. Whatever we’re thinking right now is likely similar to what we were thinking a moment ago because our past thoughts set the tone for today’s thoughts. And, because our thoughts go forth and multiply, they gain momentum in our mind so that the thoughts we think today will likely become what we experience tomorrow.
But we can always change mind. Our thoughts don’t need to occur automatically. They can occur deliberately. Every day, if we want to, we get to consciously choose what we’ll think about. Can we afford the “luxury” of a negative thought, an ungracious thought, a resentful thought? That depends on how long we want to indulge in that thought. We can indulge in it just long enough to acknowledge that it’s there so we can let it go. But if we choose to dwell on a negative thought for long, it is will gain momentum in us and attract more and more people, events, situations, and conditions just like it.
Ever been told you were “full of it”? We’re usually told we’re full of something when we say or do something unpleasing to someone else. For example, when I was growing up, my mother used tell me, whenever I was feeling confident and verbally expressive, that I was “full of myself.” I could tell it wasn’t a good thing, especially when she added that I needed to “get over myself.” It didn’t take long for me to learn that being full of myself was not pleasing, and that thought gained momentum in my life. I tried as many ways as I could to be full of something else, to get over myself and be full of somebody else—someone more acceptable, more pleasing, and more lovable. I practiced for so long that even into my early adult years I had no confidence in myself because I didn’t know who I was.
Like it or not, we live in a Universe in which we communicate with It, and each other, through vibration, through energy, or through “the ethers,” as The Science of Mind describes it. Even before words, even without words, we are communicating how we feel about our self, others and life. We can talk a good show or we can hold our tongue until we’re blue in the face. We can be shy or appear aggressive. But whatever fearful emotional energy is alive in us will ooze out of us, unseen but not unfelt by us and others. There is no way to confine the energy of our emotions or to hold onto the vibration our thoughts emit. With every thought we proclaim what we believe to be true about our self and life, and the Universe acknowledges it and responds to it.
Abraham-Hicks tells us, “Whatever you are thinking about is literally like planning a future event. When you are worrying, you’re planning. When you are appreciating, you’re planning. What are you planning?” If we’re not planning a celebration of life with our thoughts right now, and if we’re not happy with the direction our life seems to be going, we can change our life’s direction by changing our thinking about our self and who we are. Life doesn’t happen to us, WE happen in life. The habit of our thoughts, and the energy aura they create around us, become our mood and attitude, and who we are being in the world. How is your mood and attitude? Usually when we say someone is “moody,” we mean grouchy or negatively moody. But moody is moody. We can choose to be an optimistically moody person, a moody person who is joyful most of time.
We are all here to be all we can be, but how much we can express depends on who we believe we are. We read in The Science of Mind, “It is the self-knowing mind alone that constitutes reality, personality and individuality. It is the Image of God, the essence of Sonship…Without choice, volition and will there would be no channel through which the ideas of God could be expressed.” If we’re ever going to discover our true Self we need to look where who we are began, within us. The Spiritual Teacher, Matt Kahn, defines the word “me” as Magnified Energy. Unless we begin to authentically be our self, in ways that feel real to us, we won’t discover our Magnified Energy, the Self that is the reality, personality and individuality made in the Image of God. Now, that’s a Self we want to express, not “get over.”
The word “xi” in Chinese means “to be fond of, to like, to enjoy, to be happy, to feel pleased, delighted and glad.” It’s a good thing to be “full of” because when we’re full of xi, we’re full of our Divine Self. When we’re grateful for our life and appreciate being our self in it, we feel connected to our intuition and inner guidance, our Divine Self. We’re not looking for someone to tell us who we are, how to live, or how to behave and respond in any moment. When we feel connected to our intuition, we trust the choices we make because we trust the Divine Self that we are. When we know our choices come from Divine Guidance, we understand it is never our right to try to infringe upon the Divine Guidance of anyone else. We’re not looking to control the choices anyone makes just so we’ll feel better, safer, or more peaceful
When we live each day grateful for the ease of happy moments, and thankful for the lessons we learn about our freedom to choose in difficult moments, when we lay our head down to sleep, we find we experience a night’s rest feeling blessed. When we’re full of xi, we’re unconcerned about tomorrow because we know that what comes next will be the outcome of our gratitude today. We trust tomorrow will bring more into our life to be fond of, to like, to enjoy, to be happy about, and for which we feel pleased, delighted and glad.
Let us choose to allow the Image of God in our heart to express as our reality, personality and individuality, so that right where we are, we are a blessing to the world. The prayer below was spoken by Spiritual Master, Mooji:
Bless you, bless you, bless you.
Wherever you may be in this world.
Whatever your situation.
There is a place beyond all of this.
And the amazing thing – there is no distance.
My humble prayer is this:
May peace and true love,
compassion and wisdom,
become contagious again on this planet.
It begins inside each one’s heart.
Let it be your heart. Start there.
This coming Thursday is officially Thanksgiving Day, and even though Thanksgiving seems to have lost its decorative emphasis these days, and there are no catchy songs associated with it, still it has managed to squeeze its way into our life between Halloween ghosts and Christmas Santas, and continue to hold significance for many of us.
But often because we want everyone we’re planning to spend Thanksgiving Day with to have a good time, we get caught up ahead of time in the fuss and concern of planning the Holiday celebration. Whether we’re preparing the whole meal or just bringing our special dish to share, often our preparation is filled with anxiety, and even resentment, especially if someone else isn’t bringing their traditional dish or doing their part to help out. By the time Thanksgiving Day arrives we’re feeling more stressed than blessed, and more grumpy than grateful! By the time we sit down to Thanksgiving dinner, we’re so exhausted by the all commotion that preceded it’s difficult for us to remember what the day is all about. We’ve forgotten to focus on appreciating our loved ones and feeling gratitude for the good in our life.
That’s why the daily practice of feeling the high vibrations of gratitude, appreciation, and giving thanks is so important. We begin to feel the positive energy that fills us whenever we’re feeling grateful, so that when a day like Thanksgiving Day is dedicated to giving thanks, we’re ready! We’re ready for a full day of being grateful right where we are, wherever we are; a full day of appreciating everyone we’re with, no matter who we’re with or what they may be saying or doing. If we allow it to be, Thanksgiving Day can feel like Holy Celebration it is intended to be: the glorification and magnification of Gratitude.
Melodie Beattie, author of Codependent no more, wrote: “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough and more. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” Gratitude is a powerful thing because it causes us to perceive life from an awareness of our Divinity. Abraham-Hicks reminds us, “Love and appreciation are same vibration.” And, because God is love, gratitude causes us to rise in our awareness of life and consciously connect with the God within us.
In the Book of Matthew we read, “For where your treasure is, there is your heart also.” Where are we looking for our treasure, within us or to the world? Are we consciously on an inner journey of the heart? Is it our intention to feel our Oneness with all of creation and discover more and more of the one we’re created to be? Or are we on a solely human path of separation, looking to the world to tell us who we are and to give us what we need? Whatever is important to us, whatever we value, we treasure. Whatever thoughts we practice in our mind is where our heart is also.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar said, “Heaven or hell is your state of mind. If the mind is in difficulty then hell is right here. For a free mind, there’s always bliss. It’s always heaven.” We could say X marks the spot where we’re either standing in heaven or hell. A spiritual journey will expand our heart and increase our awareness that all we need wherever we stand is already within us. Such a state of mind brings us freedom and joy. A solely human journey will break our heart and keep us living unaware that the world can’t give to us what is already within us. Such state of mind imprisons us and causes us to live in lack and neediness.
Eckhart Tolle tells the story of a beggar sitting on a box by the side of the road for over thirty years. One day a stranger walked by the beggar, and the beggar mumbled, mechanically, while holding out his old baseball cap, “Spare some change?” The stranger said, ”I have nothing to give you” and then asked: “What’s that you’re sitting on?” “Nothing,” the beggar replied, “just an old box. I’ve been sitting on it for as long as I can remember.” “Ever looked inside?” the stranger asked. “No” the beggar said, “What’s the point? There’s nothing in there.” “Have a look inside,” the stranger insisted. So the beggar managed to pry open the lid, and with astonishment and elation he discovered that the box was filled with gold.
In the Book of Luke we read, “For nothing is concealed that will not become evident, nor anything hidden that will not be known & come to light.” This Earth life isn’t a game of hide and seek. It’s about getting up off our assets and using our treasures. Our treasure isn’t hidden, but we do have to know where to look for it so that it can come to light from our heart to our mind and into our life.
If we’re looking to the world to give us scraps of pleasure and satisfaction, or for validation, security and love, whatever we experience won’t fulfill us as a spiritual being. Success that seems to come from outside of us causes fear within us. It causes us to be selfish and jealous, and to take and possess rather than give. We’re here to give our treasure to the world, not to find something to keep and hold onto for dear life in it. If we want to know what we treasure, and where our heart is focused, Abraham-Hicks reminds us that what we’re living is the evidence of what we’re thinking and feeling, every single time.
No thoughts are concealed that won’t become evident as our life because whether we’re standing in a crowd or standing alone in our kitchen, X marks the spot where we’re communicating with the Universe through the vibrational energy we’re emitting with our thoughts. And, because the Universal Law of Attraction is all about energy and vibration, It knows where our heart is and where our treasure lies. It receives our vibration and answers it, no questions asked, with things that match it. Our life lets us know whether we’re standing in heaven or hell; whether we’re treasuring our identity as Divinity and looking within us for the peace, joy, love, and abundant good we desire to experience, or we’re looking to the world and blaming those within it when they do not (because they cannot) provide our treasures for us.
When we decided to come into human form, we carried our own treasure map with us, drawn by the hand of God. A Course in Miracles tells us that it was drawn with everlasting Love. The X on that map not only told us where to find our treasure, but included the words, “You are here,” so we wouldn’t get lost on our adventure in the world. But instead of following our own map, we often look at everyone else’s map to see where they’re going. We may look at the map of someone who appears to be succeeding in the world and try to follow their map believing the X on their map marks the spot where our treasure is also. Or we may look at those who appear (to us) to be going the wrong way because they’re not behaving in the way we think they should, and so we insist that they follow our map. But the X that is on our map belongs only to us. It is the X the Universe sees, the X that marks the Presence of God in us.
Speaking as our Divinity, The Way of the Heart tells us, “I am already That which I seek. While this body lasts, I will allow it to be a communication device that extends the treasure of perfect Love, perfect safety, and perfect peace to all who enter my house. And, my house is my field of energy, the expanse of my presence.” Our true treasure is the radiant joy of Being our true self, and the deep unshakable peace and well-being that comes with it. The treasure within us not only includes all those things we want to experience in our human adventure, but infinitely greater treasure than anything the world can offer.
Are we sitting on our assets like a beggar asking the world to “spare some change?” Are we looking outside of us hoping to fill our emptiness when all that we want is right there already? The lyrics of the song, “It’s Already There,” tell us, “You spend your days hoping/You spend your nights wishing/You’re always feeling something is missing/Can’t you see?/Don’t you know?/You don’t have so far to go/It’s already there what you’re looking for/It’s already there don’t have to search anymore/Open your eyes/believe that it’s true/It’s already there inside of you.”
Gratitude is the key that opens the holy treasure chest within us. When we’re grateful to be alive, when we appreciate all the good we already have, the Universe demonstrates to us that Life is good, “every time” and all the time. Our treasures are endless because they flow from the Infinite Source within us. When our heart is filled with Gratitude, we feel good vibes within us and that feeling extends to those around us, to those who enter our house, our field of energy, the expanse of our presence. We experience the good vibes that cause good health and help others to heal. We emit good vibes that cause good relationships and happy encounters. X marks the spot where our good comes to us and through us.
Present moment awareness, free of past regrets and future concerns, marks the spot of the joyful radiant Being that is our true Self. Right where we are, wherever we are, is the spot where the love, light, joy, laughter, peace, hope, and beauty of creation expresses through us. In other words, “X marks the spot” where Christ is revealed through us.
November offers us an official Thanksgiving Day—a day to turn our attention to our loved ones and appreciate them; a day to give thanks for all the good in our life we might otherwise not notice or take for granted. But we need not reserve our gratitude for just one day of expression each year. In fact, it’s important for us to feel and express gratitude for our life every day. Gratitude and appreciation for our life, and giving thanks for the good we’ve received, causes us to be aware of the Presence of Goodness in the world, and that awareness enriches our experience of life.
Abraham-Hicks reminds us that “love and appreciation are the same vibration,” the same Divine Energy, the same awareness that Life is Good. Gratitude, when we truly feel it, when it flows straight from our heart, lifts us to a high vibrational altitude in our mind where we are able to experience God within us, the pure positive Divine Source Energy of our Life. God is Love, and our appreciation causes us to become an energetic transmission tower of Love, a broadcasting system of Love, a giver and receiver of Love. When we live in gratitude, Love becomes all we want to be, to feel, to see, to experience, and to express. The poet, Hafiz, wrote: “An awake heart is like a sky that pours light.”
Gratitude lifts us up where we belong, and from that High Holy view we experience our self and life as Love created life to be. Since the Universe of Love is ever-increasing and ever-expanding God’s intention for creation, Love is ever-extending Itself through all Life, including our life. If we were to turn our attention each day to loving those around us (whomever is around us and whomever comes to mind) through the Law of Attraction that matches up vibration, the Love within us would increase, expand and extend so that It would draw to us even more of life to love. If we were to appreciate the good in our life now, and give thanks for it everyday, our appreciation would increase, expand and extend so that it would draw to us even more to appreciate.
The poet, Rumi, wrote: “Be grateful for your life, every detail of it, and your face will shine like a sun, and everyone who sees it will be happy and at peace.” Our awakened feelings of gratitude for every detail of our life not only blesses us, but blesses those around us. We might want to ask our self: “How bright does my gratitude shine? What do I see when I glance in the mirror? Does my face reveal my joy? During the day, do I smile with such radiance that everyone who sees my face is reminded to feel happy and at peace?”
Often we walk around “in our head,” thinking about some past situation or some future event that prevents us from shining in the present moment. When we’re off somewhere else in our mind, we usually have a serious look on our face. Perhaps our brow is creased in concern or contemplation. There isn’t a radiant smile on our face because there’s no one home, present in moment, to shine through our face. We’ve all seen that vacant look in others when it seems that they’ve gone off and left only their body with us. Thich Nhat Hahn said, “Some people live as though they are already dead. There are people moving around us who are consumed by their past, terrified of their future, and stuck in their anger and jealousy. They are not alive; they are just walking corpses.”
We are here to bring the Energetic life inside of us to three-dimensional life in the world—through our body, our words and actions, our relationships, and through every form and expression we focus upon and call our life. It is important for us to ask our self: “What does my focus bring into form and expression in my life?” Abraham-Hicks tells us, “Your life can be as wonderful or as horrible as you allow it to be. It all depends upon the thoughts that you practice, and therein lies the basis of anyone’s success: How much do I practice thoughts that bring me joy and how much do I practice thoughts that bring me pain?” It is important for us to be present right where we are so that we’re aware of what thoughts we’re practicing, and how our thoughts are causing us to feel in that moment. In this way we know what energy is active within us, and we can change our thinking to thoughts that bring joy if we want to or need to.
If you’ve heard the song, “Jump, Jive and Wail,” even if you didn’t understand the words, you likely felt the beat. And, as the rhythm moved through you, you knew that the song was all about singing and dancing, and feeling the joy of being alive. “Jump, jive and wail” can also be about our practicing thoughts that bring us so much joy that we can’t help but to feel, and dance with, the music of our soul. Einstein said, “We are slowed down sound and light waves, a walking bundle of frequencies tuned into the cosmos. We are souls dressed up in sacred biochemical garments, and our bodies are the instruments through which our souls play their music.”
“Jump” can refer to our ability to choose to rise quickly, to jump, to a place in our mind that feels good, no matter what’s going on. It’s that happy place we go to when happiness is all we want to feel. It’s a place of peace and joy within us that is part us and not dependent on outer conditions and situations. That’s why we go there in our mind when we want to get away from outer disturbances.
“Jive” can refer to our ability to feel the joyful rhythm of our soul and move with it, even if our body stays still. The music is always happy and danceable because our soul is never trapped within the human conditions of the world.
“Wail” can refer to the unrestricted, uninhibited utterances of spontaneous joy and satisfaction that come from us in words, songs, and sighs. When we’re on a Divine High of gratitude, what we’re feeling naturally exudes and emanates through us.
Another question we might want to ask our self is: “How much do I practice thoughts that bring me so much joy I feel like jumping, jiving and wailing within me no matter what I’m doing in the world around me? On the other hand, how much do I practice thoughts that bring me so much pain I feel like slumping rather than jumping, and sitting out my life rather than getting out on dance floor, if only in mind, and jiving with my soul? How often do I practice thoughts that cause me so much pain I feel like crying out in grief and suffering rather than singing and sighing in joy and satisfaction?”
We read in the Book of Psalms: “MAKE a joyful noise to the LORD, all you lands.” That means all of us, not just some of us. No one is preordained to be miserable or chosen to suffer. Every life can be as wonderful or as horrible as the one living it allows it to be. Imagine what the world would be like if all we heard were joyful noises in our mind and coming from our lips; joyful noises resounding in our household, spoken by others, and offered through the media; reports and conversations about all the good that happens everyday because mostly good does happen everyday. Abraham-Hicks tells us to imagine a 24-hour news station that gave proportional attention to both positive and negative events that happened each day. And, as we sat and watched this and that good thing occurring, every once-in-while a bit of static, an incoherent blip, would appear representing all the negativity that actually occurred in the world that day.
The world is full of goodness. It is our focus that either calls our attention to it or away from it. It is our practice of thought and our habit of conversation that determines where we focus and makes our life wonderful or horrible. Not everything we see, hear and experience in the world automatically inspires thoughts that bring us joy. But if we’re depending on the world to bring joy to us, while we sit in misery until then, we’re going to have a long wait. And, as we wait, focused on all the painful things in our life and the world around us, we’ll find less and less to feel grateful about, and more and more to complain about, in our life and the world around us.
If the world was responsible for our happiness, we wouldn’t need to practice thoughts that bring us joy. They would come to mind automatically. In fact, they’d come so automatically that we wouldn’t notice the self-directed spiritual being we are, and our power to choose our thoughts would go unpracticed by us. Earth life is a training ground for spiritual masters, not a reform school for sinners. How would we know it is the power of our mind that creates our experience of reality unless we were called upon in our life experiences to use the power of our mind? So often we’re afraid to be hopeful, afraid to feel the pain of failure so we don’t even try to use our mind to practice thoughts that bring us joy. It’s our fear of the pain of unworthiness that keeps us focused on what we don’t want as if we deserve it. Khalil Gibran wrote, “Many of us spend our lives running from feelings, with the mistaken belief that we cannot bear the pain. But you have already borne the pain. What you have not done is feel all you are beyond that pain.”
The beauty of conditions, situations and conversations that momentarily cause us pain or sorrow is that we get to discover we have the power to rise to a higher vibration within us that feels better. We’re never stuck in misery. No one can make us angry, resentful or unhappy but us, and we get to change our mind about how we want to feel anytime we choose to! Right in middle of conditions that seem unchangeable and unenjoyable—like aging, disease, disability, and conflict—every choice for joy we make is a spiritual practice that causes us to become more and more aware we are a spiritual being with the power to choose how we want to experience our life. We can supersede a painful past with any present moment thought that feels better to think. If we’re willing to stop allowing our painful stories to define us, we’ll discover we were never those stories anyway. We have always been the one beyond the pain. We can let go of the low vibration of mental negation that is keeping our good away, and if we do, our good will start flowing into our life instantly. We can take a leap of faith that takes us higher than our fears, and practice thoughts that bring us joy and cause our life to be wonderful.
In the Book of Samuel we read, “And King David sang praises before the LORD with all his might. The daughter of Saul looked down from her window, and when she saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord, she was filled with contempt for him.” Not everyone will understand or agreement with our decision to feel joy in a world that doesn’t seem to offer much to be joyful about. But that’s all more reason to jump, jive and wail. Our joy not only calls more joy into our life, but into the world. We can choose to be so grateful for our life, every detail of it, that our face shines like a sun and everyone who sees it feels happy and at peace.
The beautiful autumn month of November, with its inclusion of an official Thanksgiving Day, calls to us to focus our attention on the positive creative power of feeling grateful just to be alive, one day at a time. This month offers us the opportunity to focus on the high vibration we emit when we feel appreciation, and how that vibration draws our attention toward more and more to appreciate in our self and the world around us.
There is a sacredness in our feeling “thanksgiving” within us before we say “thank you” to anyone for anything, so that our words come straight from our heart. A mantra of “thank you-thank you-thank you” is one of the most powerful mantras we can say in our life. The spiritual master, Mooji, tells us, “Just keep saying thank you. Don’t explain. Don’t complain. Just say thank you. Say thank you to existence.”
Giving thanks for our journey so far through life, feeling thankful for this time and place in our life, opens us to fully appreciate our existence in the present moment. When we’re thankful for the gift of being alive, we’re more able to appreciate the good we have now. And that appreciation allows more good to come our way and flow into what comes next.
Though Thanksgiving Day often calls our attention to people we love, and to the positive aspects of our life that we might have been taking for granted, giving thanks every day, and every moment throughout the day, uplifts us to a place in our mind and heart where we are able to feel the Love within us that has called us into Being. As we allow Its Presence to fill us to overflowing, Love through us flows into the world. Then Thanksgiving becomes a lifestyle, rather than just a holiday.
Abraham-Hicks tells us, “Love and appreciation are identical vibrations. Appreciation is the vibration of alignment with who you are. When you focus upon what you want, when you tell the story of how you want your life to be, you come closer and closer to the vicinity of appreciation. And, when you reach it, it will pull you toward all things that you consider to be good in a very powerful way.” If we want to know the direction our thoughts are taking us in life, we need to notice the feelings that are pulling us there. In other words, we need to become self-aware and self-observant as we live our life.
We know we’re on the path that leads to all things we consider to be good when what we think, say and do energizes us, brings us joy throughout our day, and brings peace, satisfaction and rest at the end of the day. If we feel agitated throughout the day, with unpleasant energy running through us, and at the end of day we feel exhausted, unsatisfied and restless, it’s an indication we’re heading in a direction we don’t want to go, one that is pulling us toward experiences we’ll consider to be not-so-good.
It’s essential for us to find our “why” in life: Why we get up in the morning. Why we do what we do all day long. What it is that motivates our thoughts, words and actions. If obligation is our motivation, our thoughts, words and actions will lack appreciation, that positive creative Force that makes what we doing spiritually worthwhile. Obligation creates resentment, and it won’t bring us the good we want no matter how good we look doing what we do. If fear is the reason we do what we do—whether it’s fear of not being loved and accepted, fear of not having enough money, fear of getting sick—since fear and Love, as A Course in Miracles reminds us, can’t coexist, we won’t bring Love into our actions. And our actions won’t bring the Love we desire to express as we do what we do. Even though what we do may be helpful in some way in pleasing another or easing our guilt, in helping us to feel less lonely, or helping us to get by financially, it is only by loving what we do, and feeling Love while we’re doing it, that we feel grateful for our life and pulled in the direction of our good.
We may wonder how we can feel grateful doing anything when we don’t appreciate the conditions of our life. How we can maintain positivity and an attitude of gratitude when most of the time we feel like a negative, down-in-the dumps grump. What if we’re experiencing health challenges that are limiting and painful, or we’re experiencing disharmony in our relationships with family, friends, coworkers, neighbors, or even total strangers? What do we have to be grateful for under those conditions? We can start by just being grateful that we have the spiritual option to let our self rise in an awareness of appreciation that is above conditions. In order for us to maintain an attitude of gratitude, our gratefulness must to unconditional. How do wewe rise in appreciation? By being grateful that we’re alive to feel gratitude. Feeling gratitude feels good to feel, and it creates a mental-vibrational environment that draws our attention to something good in any condition. But in order for us to notice our attitude in any given moment (just in case we want to change it), we must become self-aware and self-observant as we live our life.
Tibetan Lama Surya Das wrote, “Before speaking, notice what motivates your words.” In order for us to notice why we’re about to say something, it’s necessary for us to be aware of our thoughts and feelings in the present moment so we’ll know the motivation behind our words. Then we can choose the words that convey what we truly mean to say. Ambrose Bierce wrote, “Speak when you are angry and you will make the best speech you will ever regret.” So often we react to life through the force of habit rather than the Force of deliberate choice.
When we live our life by rote, mechanically and repetitiously, thinking, saying and doing the same things over and over again, we’re unaware of why we say and do what we say and do, or how we feel while we’re saying and doing it. When we have a routine for living our life that is so familiar and predictable that it doesn’t seem to require much thought, we don’t give it much thought. We move about our life unaware of what’s going on within us that motivates us as we move. It’s as if we’re mentally on automatic pilot, with old thoughts and old stories spinning around in our mind and making us numb to the present moment. We’re not considering that each moment is offering us something new to think, say and do. We don’t consider telling a new story about what we want.
Life doesn’t just happen to us, it happens through us, through the thought forms we give Life Energy to flow through. We’ll know if we’re going to like the forms and expressions that our thoughts are molding into shape by the way we feel. That’s why it’s important for us to find the “why” in what we think, say and do.
Love and appreciation are identical vibrations because God is Love and appreciates all that His Love has created. We are born of the One Love that is forever in Love with us. We are eternally the Beloved of God. When we feel appreciation within us, we’re in alignment with who we are because we are feeling the Divine Appreciation that Sources us every mo with all we want and need.
Spiritual teacher, Adyashanti, said “When we are in our true being, the purpose of life is to feel that every moment is the purpose.” When we are being our true being, we find our “why” and our purpose as a spiritual being for coming into this human experience becomes clear. It’s got to be a good purpose because God is Good and called us here. And, it is God that continues every moment to gift us with life. When realize we’ve already received more than what we deserve, and we realize that it has all come to us as a blessing and a gift, then the gratitude we feel becomes a prayer. Gratitude connects our awareness with the Holy Invisible that is not tangible, but existing—the Creator of the Universe, the Divine Presence that exists within all that lives. But, we have to change our attitude to one of gratitude, and rise to meet its vibration, to be ready to receive what we’ve asked for through our desires and prayers.
When we live this life unafraid to be grateful for it all (no matter how some of it may appear some of the time), when appreciation replaces the attitude “I just gotta through this,” then we become aware that there is always something to be grateful for right where we are. Appreciation allows our attention to be drawn to it because we’re in vibration with it. When we choose love of life over fear of any condition, we discover that Love is all around us because we feel the Love within us. Love becomes our “why” as we do whatever we do. It becomes the motivation behind our words and the Presence within our actions. If what we’re doing doesn’t feel good, we’re not doing it with Love.
What we experience in life is who we are being in life. If our “why” in life is to be our true self, we’ll find that it’s not just our purpose to be loving, but to be Love. And, that’s an awareness to be grateful for!
Many of us fear change because we worry we won’t like what comes next. The Spiritual Master, Osho, said, “Courage is a love affair with the unknown.” A love affair with the Unknown requires trust that the ever-moving Nature of Life, as It changes in form and expression, is moving in ways we will enjoy and appreciate. It’s trusting that the Pure Positive Energy that is the Invisible Source of all visible Life is filled with Unlimited Possibilities for Good, and that change is the avenue through which more and more Goodness expresses.
Invisible, Unchangeable Good is at the heart of the impermanence in the visible world, including our visible self. We didn’t come to stay, but we did come to play! We came into this human experience to wear as many costumes as we can, to live as fully as we can, and to be a Master of disguises fully aware that all costumes are temporary and removable, including our human costume. Change doesn’t change who we truly are, i.e., a free-flowing soul having a human experience.
A love affair with the Unknown allows us to accept the progression of time, and the changes it brings, as not only inevitable but Divinely orchestrated, and to let Earth life’s diversity, variability and unpredictability make life interesting, rather than fearful, for us. The question, “What’s next, ”becomes a joyful one that is filled with wonder and curiosity, rather than a “What’s next” filled with anxiety and dread. If we want to be happy in this shape-shifting world, we need to learn to trust that the Unknown wants to be Known by us for the pure Joy of Divine Exposure! The Positive Energy that lives in us is the Source of all Joy, and carries within It our happiness and well- being.
We may believe that if nothing changed, nothing could get worse. But if nothing changed we’d be unable to access and materialize at least some of the infinite possibilities that life offers us. Thich Nhat Hanh said, “Thanks to impermanence, everything is possible. Because nothing is written in stone, anything can happen in any moment. And, if we allow it to be, it will be something good. Change not only facilitates evolution and transformation through Mother Nature, but through human nature as well. It reveals new possibilities for us to choose from, no matter how limited our choices may have seemed in the past. It brings new understanding for us to express, no matter how limited our self-expression has been. Change offers a fresh start if we’re interested.
Author, Marty Rubin, wrote, “Seize the day, then let it go.” We can appreciate what is and still flow gently into what’s next as we accept that nothing is meant to stay the same. If it did, we’d stop growing and expanding in new awareness and the expression of our Divinity through our humanity. Our body is just a vessel for our amazing Being-not a safety deposit box to hide our spirit from world.
In tribute to Halloween, someone posted on Facebook: “You are a ghost driving a meat-coated skeleton made from stardust, riding a rock hurtling thru space. What do you have to be scared of?” Thank God we are so much more than the human costumes we wear! We are free to stick our focus inside our physical form and ignore the twinkling light of “stardust” that is animating it. But if we do, if we fool our self into believing our physical body is all there is to us, is it any wonder that we feel frightened, vulnerable and needy? From inside our body it surely looks like everything we need to be healthy, happy, wealthy, loved, and safe is outside of us.
When we believe that the world has the key to what we desire, we’re a lot like vampire depending on what is outside of us to sustain our life. Our fangs are pointed towards the world, ready to go get what we need from anyone who might give it to us—family members, friends, coworkers, doctors, lawyers, strangers, a job, or just plain luck—we don’t care as long as what we need is there. And, when it’s not there, we become afraid that it never will be, and often attribute the absence of what we want to our unworthiness to have it. We convince our self that there’s something wrong with us that we need to hide from others in order to get what we want.
Even if we “get lucky” and find a human source that seems willing to give us what we need, because we know the world is all about change and impermanence, we live in fear we might lose the love, happiness and security we need at any time. Fear of impermanence causes us to try to control the world around us. We try to keep others prisoner to our desires so that we can have what we want for as long as we want it. If others fail to do what we want them to do, say what we want them to say, and provide what we expect them to provide, fear causes us to puff up in order to appear more forceful so we’ll be more convincing through intimidation. We say and do monstrous things when we feel out of control, hurtful things we regret. The biggest bullies in the world, no matter who they are or how powerful and important they seem, are afraid to show their neediness and fear of loss. Bullies are looking to the world to provide what they are not experiencing within themselves.
If we want feel happy, satisfied, and unafraid in this world, we must become a Master of our own life so that we can direct the flow of Pure Positive Energy within us into our life experiences in happy and satisfying ways. Abraham-Hicks tells us, “Like the air you breathe, abundance in all things is available to you. Your life will simply be as good as you allow it to be.” How good are we willing to allow, not force, our life to be. We can learn to trust that time is on our side when we make good use of it. But, so often it seems as if there is either not enough time, or too much time wasted, for us make good use of our Earth time, most of time, and to practice being a deliberate creator in life. The 16th Century French philosopher, Jean de La Bruyère, wrote, “Those who make the worst use of their time are the first to complain of its brevity.”
It’s easy for us to embrace the concept of time moving quickly, yet when it comes to the swiftness of our making positive changes in our thinking that will open us to greater spiritual awareness and more fulfilling experiences in our life, those changes seem to move in slow motion, if they move at all. Change doesn’t take time. We take time to change! Most of the time old thoughts seem to stick around as if they have no place to go. Familiar thoughts feel comfortable even if they’re not happy ones. We feel safe with old thoughts because they have been with us for so long. We choose a love affair with the known rather than the Unknown, even if what we’ve been thinking about self and life is keeping us from experiencing the change we desire in our body, relationships, and freedom of self-expression. We hold on so tightly to what we already know that we can’t grow in ways we’ve yet to know. We get stuck like a deer in the headlights, afraid to move at all, when we’re meant to ride on the beam of light.
Rumi wrote, “You think you belong to this world of dust and matter. From this dust you created a personal image, and forgot the essence of your true origin.” We are so much more than our personal image, so much more than our human body. No one outside of us can give us a life worth living because we brought our power to create such a life with us when we arrived in this human experience. We didn’t come to fearfully hold onto anything, or suck the life out of anything. We are here to freely experience the fullness of life so that we can experience more of the Infinite Possibilities for living life that are available to us. We’re here to let the door to our mind fly open to Infinity. But, we won’t gain access to our Power, and become a Master in using It, unless we remember our true origin. When we remember we are a Divine Being simply wearing a human disguise, and that beneath it Wisdom and Truth abides, we realize our well-being and all that goes with it—health, happiness, love, and safety—are our birthright. And, as we do, amazing things begin to happen.
We can’t fool the Universe with our costumes even while we play trick-or-treat with the world. We are now, and we will forever be, Its powerful Sons and Daughters. We may have fooled our self and forgotten the Truth of who we are, but the Truth will never forget us because we are forever One with It. We read in A Course of Love, “God’s heartbeat is the Source of the world, the Soul of the world, the Sound of the world in harmony, existence with no beginning and no end.” There is no God and us. There is only God as us wearing a human costume. God provides all we desire every moment while we are here because God desires it for us too. We were Masters before we came into this human experience. Our body is just a vessel for our amazing Being. But we can only set our self free by using the Master key.