Finding Ground in Chaotic Times

Om

Each week I receive Heart Advice emails from Pema Chodron. Pema is wise, humble and quite funny in a dry Buddhist kind of way.  She is one of my all-time favorite spiritual teachers.  This week’s Heart Advice is so good that I wanted to share it with all of you.

Sometimes the most profound advice is quite simple:

A BRIEF PRACTICE FOR GROUNDING

“First, come into the present. Flash on what’s happening with you right now.
Be fully aware of your body, its energetic quality.
Be aware of your thoughts and emotions. 

Next, feel your heart, literally placing your hand on your chest if you find that helpful.
This is a way of accepting yourself just as you are in that moment,
a way of saying, “This is my experience right now, and it’s okay.” 

Then go into the next moment without any agenda.”

~Pema Chodron
Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change

Smoke and Stone

Smoke and Stone
Smoke and Stone

I sit

breathing out my worry

and my wonder

as I silently ask the Goddess

what exactly is compassion?

and can I offer it to myself?

I sit

breathing out my fear

am I brave enough

to love

like a Boddhisattva

without reason, without end?

I sit

watching the Goddess

smoke dances, we sit

suddenly, the stone of me cracks

there is nowhere to hide

I am love.

Connect to True You

I want to share a guided exercise with you – depending on your perspective, you may look at this as a guided meditation or a shamanic journey. Whatever you choose to call it, this exercise is about helping you to connect with your Soul Flow, or the true essence of you.  This is about connecting with who you are beyond all the labels put on you by society. It’s about reconnecting with True You.

Who are you beyond being a mother, daughter, wife, friend, boss, helper, neighbor, lover, bitch, man, son, husband, jerk, buddy, partner, employee… Who are you REALLY??  This guided exercise will help you find out.

http://youtu.be/hhSznpLJtl0

Shadows and Joy

Shadow Joy

 

“We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think.
When the mind is pure,  joy follows like a shadow that never leaves.”
~Buddha

Joy can seem as elusive and slippery as a soap bubble.

Yet once, years ago in meditation, I realized that joy and misery lie just a hair’s width apart within my mind. The image of joy and misery just micrometers apart within me, was so clear that I startled and came out of my reverie giggling. I remember that moment in vivid detail even now years later.  And I know that I choose whether I will feel joy or misery or something in between in this moment. And the next. And the next.

It only takes a tiny shift in the mind to move from misery into joy; a micron of a shift; just a slightly altered point of view.

Breathe. And breathe again. Deep, slow breaths that fill your lungs. And feel whatever body sensations are present now; feel the sensations that joy is hiding behind. Breathe and feel your body. Then allow joy to step out of the shadows and be here now.

Can it really be that simple? Yes. Yes!

“A human being is only breath and shadow.”
~Sophocles