Bad Moods and Conscious Thought

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“Who sits in solitude and is quiet hath escaped from three wars: hearing, speaking, seeing: yet against one thing shall he continually battle: that is, his own heart.” ~ Abbot Anthony

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I was sitting by a beautiful lake at sunset being frustrated and distracted by little things; the moment wasn’t the perfect scene I had pictured in my head. There was a dog barking, cutting through the otherwise perfect silence, and I was being bitten by mosquitos, and I had a hundred and one worries running through my head. I’d been looking forward to getting away from the city and having peace and solitude at the lake all week, but then, once I got there, I wasn’t able to enjoy it. When suddenly I thought to myself “look around you, look where you are!” I looked around and really saw for the first time that day, and a sense of awe and wonder bubbled up inside me as I sat there on the dew dampened grass watching the fish jumping out of the water, and admiring the tall grasses waving in the wind; at that moment more beautiful than a colourful bouquet, their dark silhouettes set against the last light of day reflecting off the water. It is in moments like that, when “the wildness and the pang of life steals into our hearts and thrills them” (~William James) that you realize what it’s all about, that all life culminates in this one moment, and the need for everything to be “just so” disintegrates as you finally appreciate what is.

It’s easy to get “caught” in a bad mood; to feel like there’s nothing we can do to shake it. Cartoonists depict a bad mood as our own personal rain cloud following us around, and it can certainly feel that way; like a force of nature, but that story paints us as a victim. When we become a victim of our bad moods, we surrender control of our thoughts and emotions; the very things we have the most potential to control in this ever changing life.

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When we give up control; because it is a choice, conscious or not; we start to feel powerless and “out of control” in our daily lives. We start to see everything in a negative light under that dark cloud: children’s laughter becomes annoying instead joyous, that beautiful sunny day is too hot and bright, everything our spouse says and does is wrong; it’s almost as if we start to look for things to add to our misery, to justify our bad mood, rather than owning our own feelings.

The problem starts to magnify as our bad mood effects our words and actions. We start to drift away from our core values and act in ways that go against our authentic selves: snapping at our children and spouses, losing it on the checkout clerk, cutting people off in traffic. All of this sets off a chain reaction as the people around us tend to react to our negativity in a negative way. Surrender to bad moods often enough and it becomes habit, part of our automatic programming; we drift on autopilot in a sea of negativity and we can drift so far away from our true selves, our highest potential for good, that it can seem impossible to find our way back.

The key to staying authentic, holding on to our truths, is to take back control of our thoughts and feelings: to take responsibility for our own moods. Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and really own what you are feeling, right now, at this moment. No one and nothing “made” you feel this way. You made a decision, whether conscious or not, to feel this way, and you have the power to decide to feel differently. The power you have over your own emotions is incredible, and the more you practice consciousness of thought, the easier it becomes to stay in control.

This is why we have a “meditation practice”, because meditation is a practice for life. Not the practice of having an empty mind, but the practice of focusing your thoughts, bringing them back again and again so that when you find your thoughts spiraling out of control you have the capacity to bring them back to center again and again. Meditation is the practice of conscious thought.

Manifestation

OPPORTUNITIES AND CHOICES

“Every significant vital sign- body temperature, heart rate, oxygen consumption, hormone level, brain activity, and so on- alters the moment you decide to do anything.” ~ Deepak Chopra,  The Book of Secrets: Unlocking the Hidden Dimensions of Your Life

You can make a decision, right now, to change your focus, to change your mood. Whatever situation or person you are holding responsible for your bad mood right now, free them of that responsibility. Put the power right back where it belongs: in your hands, or more accurately, in your mind.

That situation didn’t just happen to you; own the fact that you created it, that it is exactly what you need at this moment for your personal growth. Ask the question “what do I need to learn from this in my life right now?” Be grateful for the challenge and the opportunity to grow.

“On some dimension or other, every event in life can be causing only one of two things: either it is good for you, or it is bringing up what you need to look at in order to create good for you.
Evolution is win-win…life is self-correcting.”
~ Deepak Chopra, The Book of Secrets: Unlocking the Hidden Dimensions of Your Life

That person didn’t do that hurtful thing TO you; that person did something misguided and small. You chose to take it personally, you chose to be hurt by it. You can make a different choice. You can change your mind. Choose to see that misguided small person for who they really are: another Soul, lost and confused on the journey to enlightenment just like yourself.

Recognize parts of yourself in them, as much as it may pain you to do so. Learn true humility and look at the parts of yourself you are really scared to face staring back at you in their eyes.

Recognize that the fear and the pain come from not accepting those parts of yourself. When you are able to love those parts, you will be able to love that person, and be grateful they came into your life to act as your mirror and teacher. They are there to play a role in your life, as you are there to play a role in their life.

Recognize that we are all actors on the stage of life, and nothing is personal. In your eyes, they are just the role they are playing in your life, but in reality, they are a Soul, a heart, and a consciousness: a piece of the Divine.

Recognize the Divine in them, and the Divine in you, and the Divine at work in your life.

These are the tough lessons.

This is the real hard shit.

This is when you rise to the challenge, let go of your ego, and let yourself love yourself as you truly are, not as you pretend to be, or wish you were.

This is when you realize that everything you are is enough, and when everything you are is enough, then every need you have to be right, or to be validated, or to be justified melts away, and taking ownership of your feelings is no longer terrifying because there is no judgement at your own failings; no nagging voice telling you you are not good enough.

Just acceptance.

Just Love.

Love yourself enough to choose better things for yourself.

Love yourself enough to take back your power and remember that this is a journey and that you won’t get it all right all of the time, but every moment is another opportunity to make a better choice. Be grateful for the opportunity to shine.

Divine Feminie

“The truly courageous person is able to withstand harm without the mental suffering that hatred and anger bring.” ~ The Dalai Lama

Letters To Lost Lovers

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“So much of spiritual life involves one’s interior journey, yet for most of us spirituality gets expressed – even transformed – only in our relationships with others.”

– Philip Simmons, Learning to Fall

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Dear Lover,

We had two perfect weeks.

Two amazing, soul inspiring, life affirming, LOVE affirming weeks out of time and reality, suspended in a golden bubble.

No one can take those two weeks away.

They cannot be tainted, they cannot be REPLICATED, but they will be treasured forever in my heart.

I will remember those two weeks.

I will forget that phone conversation when you tried to wrest them from me.

I will not wonder if I will ever see you again; that is not for me to decide. The flow of the Universe brought us together, and only the flow of the Universe can bring us back together. If we never come back together, then we were only ever meant to have those two weeks, and I am not what you need, and you are not what I
need. Trust.

Love ALways,

Robin

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Dear Lover,

I do Love you. I will always Love you. Unconditionally. No matter how far away you are, or how much time passes. I Love you.

This is not a possessive Love. I do not expect anything in return.

Just know, that out there in the world, there is someone who saw the best in you once, and will always believe you can be that person. Someone who shared the best of herself with you. You brought that out; you brought out the best in me.

Love Always,

Robin

Divine Feminie

Dear Lover,

You can’t love me.

You can’t see me.

You can’t hear me.

You can’t feel me.

But I love you. I see you. I hear you. I feel you. I don’t hate you.

I don’t need to hate to let go, not anymore.

I don’t forgive you; there is nothing to forgive. Thank you for accepting my love, may it set you free.

Love Always,

Robin


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Dear Lover,

There is nothing to forgive. Would I forgive you for being human? I am only human myself.

You did what you felt you needed to do. I do not take it personally. Yes I am in pain, but the pain is mine; you did not cause it.

You did not break my heart; I broke my heart. I broke my heart with expectation, with need, with my inability to accept. I broke my heart with fear.

There is nothing to forgive. You are on your journey, I am on mine. We both choose the quality of our passage, although we may not always choose the means.

Love Always,

Robin

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“The universe is made up of experiences that are designed to burn out your attachment, your clinging, to pleasure, to pain, to fear, to all of it. And as long as there is a place where you’re vulnerable, the universe will find a way to confront you with it.”

– Ram Dass

There is no easy path. I keep asking myself “why do I always choose the harder path?”, but the real question is “why do I choose to suffer over the journey?”.

There is no easy path; there is no harder path.There are just many paths. Each with obstacles and challenges. Each leading to the same destination. And there is the choice to suffer or to accept; to embrace LOVE or to be ruled by FEAR.

Now that I accept responsibility for my own suffering, there is no reason for blame. Anger at all past hurts fades away, and is replaced by understanding. A new level of clarity is reached, and with it comes a sense of awakening freedom; a soft light emerging on the horizon, harkening the dawn of a new day.

With Love,

Robin

Fear and Control

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So I keep screwing up this attraction thing. I keep attracting the things I want, but then, when they’re almost in my grasp, something goes wrong and they slip through my fingers. Or it seems like I’ve got what I want, but then it blows up in my face, and I find out that wasn’t really what I wanted after all.

As I said in my last post on the Law of Attraction, we don’t really know what we want, we just know we want to be happy. The trick is we focus on the things we think will make us happy instead of actual happiness.

So why do things keep going wrong when I try to attract the things I think I want? Because I am still trying to be in CONTROL.

The problem with the over-simplified Law of Attraction is that it’s all about being in CONTROL. I’m going to choose exactly what I want and attract that so I won’t ever have to feel anything bad or ever be uncomfortable. My life will be PERFECT.

But what is control? CHOICE? Would I CHOOSE to be in control of every detail, every aspect of my life so that my entire life experience would be limited by what I can imagine? Would I really choose such a limited existence over the limitless possibilities of an infinite Universe? Do I really want CONTROL?

Trying to be in control is like fighting the tide; there is no controlling fate or the tides of the Universe, there is only the ILLUSION of control and a constant struggle to maintain it. And it is when we struggle that we suffer.

To be truly OPEN, to be truly FREE, is to let go of the illusion of control you are bound in, stop the struggle, and let the abundance of the Universe in, knowing, trusting, that it will provide not necessarily what is wanted, but always what is needed.

Also knowing that the Universe and your own soul will demand that you do, indeed, GROW, and that to grow you will have to leave your comfort zone.

So the equation for today would go something like: NEED for CONTROL = FEAR of GROWTH, FEAR of CHANGE

CHANGE – quite possibly the most terrifying word in existence, and yet it is the path to freedom.

Because it is when we change, when we face our fears, when life throws the hard shit at us and we get UNCOMFORTABLE that we find out who we truly are; we are confronted with the dark sides of ourselves and given an opportunity to transform them; we dig deep and find strength we never knew we had; we see what it is that truly nourishes our souls; we see what’s really important. It is in those moments that we can see clearly just how in control we really are, because ultimately we are in total control of our own happiness, and that is what is truly important.

Life is a series of opportunities and choices. The Universe provides the opportunities but we control the choices we make, and every moment is a new opportunity to choose happiness instead of fear, growth instead of control, freedom instead of illusion.

“How you do anything is how you do everything” – Jack Canfield

Or as I said to a friend the other day “If you can’t be happy grocery shopping, you can’t be happy doing anything.”

With Love,

Robin

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My Thoughts on the Concept of Abundance and the Law of Attraction

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hoar frostAbundance. 

Just what does it mean?

What does it mean to have abundance?

What does it mean to feel the lack of it, or to feel something lacking in your life?

What am I lacking, what is missing in my life?

Is it a lack of material things? Will more THINGS make me abundant?

Of course we can’t speak of abundance without speaking of lack, or of wanting. If you are trying to attract or bring abundance into your life, you must feel something is missing, but what is really meant by abundance? I could have an abundance of manure, and if I were a gardener, that might be a good thing. Really when people talk of feeling abundant, or being abundant, or having abundance, they mean they want for nothing, they have no feeling of lack, or SCARCITY.

This is where the “Law of Attraction” comes in. I will attract the things I want into my life, then I will feel abundant! I will attract the house, the job, the car, the THINGS I want, but then I could just save myself the trouble and attract money, or WEALTH, then I could have anything I wanted. So does WEALTH = Abundance?

Well a lack of money does create a feeling of scarcity which generates FEAR, and stifles happiness, and keeps us from experiencing abundance, drains us of life and a will to go on, discourages us from giving, kills generosity, feeds animosity, and encourages a grasping

TAKE

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mentality, which leads to distrust, PARANOIA, and more FEAR. So then the equation goes WEALTH = ABUNDANCE = No FEAR= HAPPINESS?

Of course this would mean that we are only happy when we have money, and all wealthy people are walking around perpetually happy, while poor people are perpetually unhappy and afraid. Every commercial ever made asking us to spend our money would have us believe this, but we can all look around us and see that it is not so. I can look back at my own life experiences and recognize that even at my poorest, when I have had barely a dime to my name, I have been happy. In fact, I have felt just as much happiness AND fear, regardless of how much money I’ve had.

So would the equation then be HAPPINESS = ABUNDANCE? Of course happiness being a feeling, this equation is about as clear as ditch water. This in-concrete concept = that in-concrete concept. Thanks Robin. I now hold the key to life. (There really needs to be a sarcasm font for moments like this, but you catch my drift.)

So it comes down to HAPPINESS because really that’s what we all want. All this wanting and desiring of things, money, wealth, it comes down to what we think will make us happy. So what we really want is HAPPINESS, and we’ve already ruled out WEALTH as the source of all happiness, so attracting that into our lives is not going to work. Why not use the “Law of Attraction” to attract happiness instead? Because what we want changes from day to day; we really don’t know what we want because we really don’t know what will make us happy. So attract happiness instead. How does one attract happiness? Well according to the “Law of Attraction” we focus our attention on what we want, and really feel like we already have it. I’ll make this even simpler for you; to attract more happiness BE HAPPY.

Well shit, that just makes me think of a quote (from some saint who’s name I can’t remember now and Google seems unable to magically produce) that always annoys me:  “the reward of patience is patience”.  Of course it annoys me because I’m not generally a patient person, and if I’m not patient, then I will never be patient! But then patience isn’t some character trait we are born with (although some people seem to come by it easier), it is a choice, a choice we all make, to be impatient or patient, each and every moment of our lives. And so HAPPINESS is a choice too, and abundance is a series of choices made day after day to be happy, to be grateful, to be generous.

The question remains, if we want to be happy, and all we need to be happy is to choose to be happy, why would we ever choose otherwise?  Well if what we truly want all comes down to HAPPINESS then I would offer the possibility that what only ever holds us back from making that choice is FEAR, but that’s a thought for another day.

“In the spiritual life we are always at the beginning.”

With Love,

Robin Maggie Echo