. . .Our ability and willingness to be useful and helpful in business or employment determines the prospering of it. Should we experience insufficient income or a slowdown in our business, we need to improve our ability to be helpful.Read More
What are the Dimensions of God?
Most people immediately can see that God has no dimensions—God is infinite presence. Now if God has no dimensions how can the image and likeness of God have dimensions? So this is sort of a koan. God is non-dimensional, but the image and likeness of God seems to be dimensional. Well, this is mind-boggling, is it not?Read More
Do we forgive and forget? Do we condemn and punish? When respected loved ones reveal experiences of victimization and/or are exposed as sexual predators it is not possible to simply write off them off as“making a big deal out of nothing" or “evil.”Read More
And when people are sexually drawn to one another, they are trying to realize an at-one-ment. This is just a symbolic representation of the real at-one-ment. It is not the real thing, and if you take it for the real thing, you will be left with an attachment and a lot of trouble.Read More
President Obama opened his heartfelt speech in Tucson, Arizona with this phrase.And, it is true. Our hearts are broken by what happened this past Saturday in Tucson, Arizona.
This confirms a universal Truth - that what happened is wrong. We agree on that. There is nothing good about a disturbed individual shooting innocent others.
On the other hand, the individual responses to the violence, and to those who were hurt by the violence, is recognized by all as good.
These two self-evident truths sum up our purpose in life.
The recognition of what is good and the healing of what is not. In every moment of our lives, this is the task.
God did not plan this tragedy, nor was it anyone’s destiny to be hurt or killed in this untimely violent manner. Neither was it anyone’s goal to heroically charge the violent attacker or in anyone’s dayplanner to sacrifice themselves in an attempt to save the one they loved.
Yet, the choice between violence and peace, fear and love, happens everyday in an infinite amount of ways, large and small, and this is our purpose – to choose love over fear; to respond to real needs over reacting out of personal frustration.
There is not one person or organization that can rightfully shoulder the culpability for this devastating event. As in all experiences that “go wrong” with suffering, heart ache, trauma and enormous expense, there is an endless wagon train of ignorance, arrogance, greed and ambition in many individual acts along the way.Read More
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could just point out who the “bad guy” is and let them know what they’ve done wrong, let them know that it is their fault, and then they change? Wow! Then the world would be just as we think it should be.Read More
We hear and say this phrase over and over again, especially here on the East Coast after Storm Sandy, but what are we really saying?
Sometimes when the question is asked the answer is a superficial “everything is OK” in an attempt to relieve the anxiety of the questioner. Other times the questioner is overwhelmed when the answer comes back filled with troubles and losses that are unsolvable. Sometimes we “tune out” and ignore others rather than face the anxiety of not being able to help someone who is suffering,
In its most pure and universal form “Are You OK?” is an expression of love. Rather than a question, it is really a statement: “Even though it does not seem like it, all is well. We are with each other right now in this moment.”
Love is a quality of being that is attentive. It is our capacity to listen in order to understand.
Problems can arise with the question “Are You OK?” when it is translated into “How are you feeling?” or “What’s wrong?” Instead of a statement of assurance, it becomes anxious concern and an invitation to dwell in fear.
Even when we are frightened, the question, “Are You OK?” can be asked and answered with the awareness that one is reaching out to another with love and compassion. Not necessarily with answers and action.
We don’t know what we will hear or what we will say. Beyond the thought that we “should” be able to help, have the answers, or know what to do, is the capacity to listen – to ourselves, to another and to Divine Inspiration.
The truth may be that in that moment we do not know what to do or say or what action will be helpful. Knowing that we don’t know, and that we don’t need to know relieves the anxiety of thinking we “should” know. This allows love to listen. And if there is a helpful response beyond listening, it will become clear.
The MetaView does not ask the question: “Why did these men go after each other,” nor does it ask “Who is to blame?” or “What should they have done?” The MetaView asks the question: What does it mean that this incident triggered such intense national scrutiny, going immediately to the top of all news reports and dominating the national interest for several days, and continues to be the subject of essays and opinions?Read More
A movement encouraging “random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty” began in the 1980’s in response to a series of events that were characterized as “random acts of violence and senseless acts of cruelty.” Suddenly it was “hip” and “legitimate” to consider a response of kindness and to express beauty over the more common habit of mere indifference and self-centeredness. There was a wave of inspired acts of kindness and creativity in unusual and unexpected ways to both strangers and friends. Many are still being inspired by this idea.
This demonstrates that a transformation in consciousness can come from a simple concept, received and recognized by a receptive individual. The process is quite simple. A good idea meets fertile mental ground and new possibilities are inspired where before there was only a habit of thought.
Certainly, the idea of “kindness” has been available as part of the human vocabulary of values forever. But, ho-hum, it’s just one of those abstract values anyone could define on a test, without really considering it as a value to turn to. When a specific application of “kindness” as a response in the face of frightening current issues brought it into public awareness, it became an obvious " I could be kind!" awakening moment to many.
Kindness and violence both originate as thoughts in human consciousness. Thoughts are just thoughts. They underlie how we see: the world, ourselves, and others. They form the mental climate determining our perceptions and in turn our responses to situations. We’ve been educated to them whether we are aware of it or not.
Enlightened spiritual teachings suggest that we are not our thoughts, but that we are the capacity to be aware of thoughts.
The “kindness” movement demonstrates that we can awaken to what we are thinking and choose loving and kind thoughts over thoughts that are angry, violent and cruel.
This is not something that happens by accident. It is something we are educated to.
Thoughts that are motivating what we feel, what we do and what we experience can be examined. And thoughts of harmony, peace, kindness and love can be cultivated.
While the “fad” of the “random acts of kindness” movement has quieted down, the underlying value has gone “viral.” A cultural wave of increasing “kindness” as an actual practical response to situations can be seen in daily living. I’ve noticed it growing in customer service providers, the caring from health care professionals, even the DMV, banks and post office service. Kindness, compassion and gratitude are currently very popular concepts in psychological, spiritual and self-help circles. . Perhaps it can even be seen more nationally in the movement to reform our criminal justice system and provide basic health care for all.
Violence and cruelty also continue to be part of the human mental climate fed with fearful thoughts. While thoughts are just thoughts – they do have consequences. Our actions are expressions of the thoughts we’ve been influenced by whether habitual or inspired.
If living with kindness and beauty is more appealing than living in violence and cruelty, you might consider the possibility to respond more often with kindness and seek to let your life be an expression of beauty.
Money is viewed as the source of and solution to our problems. Yet, perhaps the problem is thinking that money is the solution to our problems. The view that money is both the source and solution to our problems has brought the nation to a no-win situation: We need money to solve our problem of lack of money, but taking money from ourselves will continue the problem of lack of money.Read More