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28 October 2017 4 Comments

Cell Phone Addiction. What Happens to Our Dreams?

Cell Phone Addiction. What Happens to Our Dreams?

We dream while we are awake, same as we do asleep, just as stars are in sky in the day, hidden by light. Thoughts and images of the outer mind, like light, distract us from our inner dreaming, in which lives: inspiration, insight, intuition, aspiration, what we are drawn to in our deepest selves, our guidance, what we are called to bring forth. These interior experiences give our lives meaning and shape our lives. They truly integrate us with the greater world; they connect us.

Meditative consciousness, deep feeling, unity with all life, our values . . . All pulse and breathe behind the scenes. When we are inundated from the outside we are unaware of them. They are inward aspects of our selves.

Our interiors anchor the pulse by which we know our own essence and realize our real selves. They do not thrive on the surface, in the noise. They arise TO the surface, often silently, often gently, through a stray image, an impulse, a feeling, a longing, a need—perhaps even through our discontent. When we sit with IMG_1255discontent, feel into it, we find ways to hold ourselves accountable for meaning in our lives. We find ways to inspire ourselves by discovering what matters to us truly, and feel our way, if blindly, into giving things that matter shape and form on our outsides, expression, perhaps even life direction.

How do you think cell phone addiction and Facebook addiction impact our ability to experience and breathe with these subtle and essential states, pathways, impulses, insights, and realizations?

What do you think happens when we are jolted at random by little alarms throughout the day, something beeping, buzzing, vibrating, demanding our attention regardless of our rhythms, focus of attention, productivity and flow?

What happens to our interior rhythms?
What happens to our access to ourselves?
What happens to the waves of our inner dreaming and what now washes up on the shores of our awareness?

What happens when sensationalistic fear-based news constantly demands action, time, money, feeling and attention without respect to what we have to give, and we’re not even sure all of it true?

Certainly we have a part in the causes of the world. If these causes are not our own—or even if they ARE our own—what happens when they are louder than our own inspiration and meaning, and begin to take the place of our inner worlds and dreaming?

We also may be jolted, alarmed, drawn in, called forth and asked to respond to those who text when they are out of balance, when they feel hurtful or want to bully others or damage relationships with gossip, when they boast, when they encounter difficult moments without first settling in to the deeper source of their essence or reaching into their hearts but instead reach for their phones—their need for love calling them to do so, but they broadcast the trivia of their egos and the toxins of reactive states instead of mutually connecting, for they have forgotten that they impact you.

What happens when we forget the breadth of our feelings, our bodies, and our breath and take what other people think as the measure of who we are?

If we begin to identify with our reactions to the superficial group mind, rather than taking meaning and purpose from our inner values, personal beliefs, integrity, sense of honor, chosen and cultivated values, and what we are drawn to love, the opinions and reactions of multiple people begin to displace Presence and self awareness. What happens to conscience?

When contact with others is virtual, how do you come to understand real results?
What happens to your ability to perceive your environment, to partake in the beauty of nature, and to experience joy without reason?

The trend is to make our inner world, our dreams and the people right in front of us less important than whatever comes to us electronically. What comes of this?

It starts because initially, those who can reach us are the ones who are most important to us. Then the related behaviors become habitual.
What results from constantly favoring the immediacy of an electronic contact over the people and environment around us?

If fast-food-style connection substitutes for realtime relating, and we lose touch with our depths, what happens to our capacity for soul-to-soul contact?

What begins as more easily connecting can create a riveting preference when the immediacy of it and the habits it creates make it mechanical, compelling, and often irrelevant or even destructive to what we value more.

Ironically, the more desperately one turns to multiple contacts through electronics, seeking connection, the more disconnected one often becomes.

It takes a sense of self to feel connected and allow love in.

 

Someone sent me this quote after this blog was published:

Albert Einstein: 

“I fear the day when the technology overlaps with our humanity.

The world will only have a generation of idiots.”

29 May 2017 2 Comments

Being Direct and Feeling Alive

Being Direct and Feeling Alive

“We waste so much energy trying to cover up who we are, when beneath every attitude is the want to be loved, and beneath every anger is a wound to be healed and beneath every sadness is the fear that there will not be enough time. When we hesitate in being direct, we unknowingly slip something on, some added layer of protection that keeps us from feeling the world, and often that thin covering is the beginning of a loneliness which, if not put down, diminishes our chances of joy. It’s like wearing gloves every time we touch something, and then, forgetting we chose to put them on, we complain that nothing feels quite real. Our challenge each day is not to get dressed to face the world but to unglove ourselves so that the doorknob feels cold and the car handle feels wet and the kiss goodbye feels like the lips of another being, soft and unrepeatable.” (Mark Nepo)

IMG_4045 (1)

 

25 September 2015 2 Comments

Managing Your Energy, Part #63: Being Highly Sensitive & Dealing Closely with Those Who Aren’t

Managing Your Energy, Part #63: Being Highly Sensitive & Dealing Closely with Those Who Aren’t

“It is of no use to try and prove to be what in reality you are not.” ~ Inayat Khan

“My bare feet! Step gently on life’s path, lest the thorns lying on the way should murmur at being trampled upon by you.”  ~ Inayat Khan

Self recognition and easier relations with others are the purposes of becoming aware of ones level of development. It is not beneficial to make comparisons with value judgments in mind. Ego must take the back seat so neutral observation can drive. Mind uses contrast to learn
discernment. Meanwhile, heart continues to seek Unity with all beings.

The transition from becoming confused about who we are, over-giving, or disappearing in an attempt to fit in with others to learning how to hold our own internal shape and space during personal interaction can be challenging. The focus changes from seeking external support to sustaining internal sources of support. This growth requires being able to recognize our own experience.

Highly sensitive and intuitive people with comprehensive values are often uncomfortable interfacing closely with people who cannot understand our experience. Clear observation of what an individual actually can and cannot do helps to create reasonable expectations and leads to easier interaction.

These elements tend to be overlooked by those who have not had such experience:

—The ways sensitivity is accommodated by the body, the including super-sensitive nervous, immune and hormonal systems that accompany super-keen sensing
—How hard it can be to arrive at self acceptance, without feeling something is wrong when one is uncomfortable and others do not understand it
—How painful, expensive, and shaming it can be to seek help and be told that nothing is the matter
—That symptoms are often positive adjustments to inner growth while the body and energy systems shift to support accelerated change
—That symptoms with neurological, energy, or karmic elements do not respond to ordinary measures
—How intense it is to be inundated with external energies and impressions
—What it feels like to have a cascade of hormones and emotions secondary to immune system over-activation
—The hugely varied and odd sensations, experiences, and direct perceptions some of us go through, and the unusual capacities that spring from integrating them
—How tiring and overwhelming it can be to process abnormal amounts of incoming information, and to sort what is valid, important, and meaningful from what is not
—The amount of Inner Work it takes to know one’s self well enough to do the above
—The Direct Knowing that can develop from acutely sensitive awareness of energy
—The comprehensive values that develop from having to do so
—What it takes to develop confidence in a world where one is not in the norm
—The discomfort of continually fielding projections, judgments and assumptions from those who do not understand
—How odd it feels to discover one has developed a new capacity or ability in which one has never really believed
—How confusing it can be to feel drawn through compassion to help others, even when doing so may be draining or harmful to one’s self
—How draining and isolating it can be to try to explain these things to people who don’t get it

Communicating these experiences be frustrating—and is often pointless. Someone without similar experience usually does not correctly assimilate or maintain what one tells them. P1140494They reinterpret what one says according to what they can understand, or suggest ways to fix things that are not problems.

Even with compassion for the person doing so, being given “feedback,” from someone who cannot see what is actually going on can be very annoying.

Speaking now for myself: When someone clueless is actively trying to impose their perceptual boxes onto me, and imagine they are talking about ME, I find this disconnect emotionally painful. I can keep my mouth shut, attune to their needs and limitations, take care of my own needs, or withdraw—but I do not feel close, respected, or at ease.

In a capacity of service, I am pleased to adjust myself to someone else’s world. I respect clients as fellow travelers. Being asked to explain and justify myself when I am off duty is work. Spending time by myself is often preferable.

Integrating spirituality into personal life brings up the kind of challenges we’ve been discussing in the last few posts. Stepping into the generosity of global service by sending positive energy to All Beings is a beautiful way to counterbalance the distress I have been describing.

A brand new spiritual dance using the words from a prayer of Inayat Khan showed up in my head recently: “Thy light is in all forms, thy love in All Beings.” This vision helps me move from discomfort back into Love. It exemplifies a profound respect that does not rely on personality.

How do you feel respond when people who cannot comprehend your experience give you advice that does not serve you?

What do you do to maintain respect for those who repeatedly and unwittingly disrespect you?

22 May 2015 4 Comments

Managing Your Energy Part 46: Memory, Intimacy & Loss

Managing Your Energy Part 46: Memory, Intimacy & Loss

The wife of one of my best friends died eighteen months ago. He told me that one of the most painful aspects of that huge loss was that “she was the keeper of my memories.” She had been and beside him, sharing countless, varied experiences and life events for several decades. She remembered the names of friends and acquaintances, what they had shared together, their birthdays and their family members. She remembered his personal history, what things meant to him, and the value that people, words, humor, and events held for him in his evolving context.

With feeling rather than mechanically, a person can become almost like the external hard drive on which we have been backing up our life. Shared memories confer a special value on those with whom we remember them. Losing these people can be like losing a chunk of our minds, feeling less connected to ourselves and less connected to people and things that have been important.

Memory is essential to meaning, and life becomes two-dimensional without it. I’m thinking of some neurological cases in “The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat,” by Oliver Sacks. When we can’t remember what things or people mean to us we have lost something vital.P1070741

Memory plays a central role in intimacy. Remembering the context of another person enhances sensitivity, depth of feeling, consideration, and rapport. Shared humor develops through memory, and accrues more and more value over time. It’s a shared emotional context. We remember what the other person finds funny and build on it. We remember what events mean, and can anticipate response.

When a loved one loses his or her memory, the impact on intimacy is usually devastating and confusing. Devastating because our shared world may be shattered or gone. Confusing because we are left with the icons of that world, yet only whiffs of its emotional substance.

We have been exploring memory and healthy loving connection in the face of loss. Our personal process of dealing with loss varies widely. There is a difference, however, between memory and obsessive nostalgia, between dealing with painful loss and being stuck in the past. A healing process morphs and changes as we go along. This is different than having a stranglehold on the past.

I’ve seen people drive themselves to despair obsessing about positive memories. Intensive focus on the past can function as a way to avoid making decisions leading to an unknown future. When longing and nostalgia become a way to stay stuck, they drain the present of our Presence.

Moving closer and closer to our own essence makes change and loss more bearable. When we are gaining freedom, self-expression, or spiritual development, change is easier to embrace—even when it entails loss.

Learning to embrace loss is challenging, but it can also be engaging and awakening, especially if we can bring ourselves naked into the next phase that life has to offer.

We can begin practicing at any point to age gracefully and ultimately to die well by learning not to struggle to against unavoidable loss. Learning to stay open to possibility is one of the many benefits of cultivating Presence and essence.

Do you ever resist growth by focusing intensely on your past?
If so, what does it cost you and what do you gain from doing so?

What do you do for yourself to support yourself when you experience loss?

27 March 2015 7 Comments

Managing Your Energy, Part 40: Change & Spiritual Growth, Essential Questions for Developing Self Trust

Managing Your Energy, Part 40: Change & Spiritual Growth, Essential Questions for Developing Self Trust

From a spiritual perspective, safety is largely a factor of what we identify with. When we identify with things that change, we feel more threatened by change. When what we think we ARE may be eradicated by change, change is frightening.

Profound spiritual growth is more threatening than superficial growth. Patterns and personality, likes and dislikes, or our profession may change. We feel threatened if we identify with these things. Then, when they change, we think we will no longer be the same person.

Essence is not threatened by change.IMG_0074

When we identify with our essence, transformation is less threatening because ‘who we really are’ does not change. The seasoned spiritual traveler realizes that the more we transform the more we feel like our own true and natural selves.

Getting to an experience of essence sometimes requires trauma or disruption. Unless the things we identify with become disrupted through change, we may not challenge ourselves to step beyond preconceptions and assumptions about life.

Until we assimilate trauma that informs our experience, it may be difficult to feel trust. At such a juncture it is good to ask oneself, “Trust in what?”

Distrust of God or Life is important to explore. It can bring up a whole welter of uncomfortable feelings. Sharing these feelings can be frightening, particularly if doing so has resulted in painful conversations—or silences—with people we care about. Matters that involve belief can be fraught with judgement, fear, and unspoken reservations.

The best way to approach distrust of God depends on the individual, not only their beliefs, but their relationship with their own heart, and their level of spiritual development.

It does not work to demand peace and ease as preconditions to feeling trust, or love.

Regardless of our spiritual beliefs, issues involving trust almost always hinge on our ability to trust ourselves. We may need to develop discernment, boundaries, energy related to safety, the strength to speak out, and so forth, in order to really be there for ourselves when challenges occur.

I have been learning to produce in my body and energy systems the resonance of safety and of love, and to bring these forth for myself when I am confronted with conditions and circumstances with which I am uncomfortable. When I am able to create comfort inside myself, through my own compassion, I get new insights as to how to manage circumstances and events. My self trust becomes more comprehensive.

Upon what is self trust founded? These Essential Questions to Self  form the foundations:

  • Am I asking life to be other than it is or to prove something to me so I can feel a certain way?
  • Am I trying to impose conditions upon which my full participation depends? If so, what are these conditions, and can I release them, even a bit?
  • Am I willing and able to keep learning, or to nurture myself until I can be open to learning again?
  • Am I willing to use life’s conditions and circumstances as a training ground?
  • Am I willing to practice bringing forth the qualities I need in order to remain intact, become stronger, earn my own trust, or bring forth more love?
  • If I cannot be willing right now, am I willing to be willing?
  • Am I willing to practice discernment?
  • Am I willing to make The Highest Option more important than my momentary desires?
  • What specific energies do I need right now? What can I do cultivate them?
  • If I cannot or will not do what I need right now, what can I do that is constructive?

Note that this work has to do with developing a positive relationship with will.

To benefit most, we need to engage these questions whether or not we FEEL positive, and whether or not our beliefs are working.

Which questions are the most relevant for YOU right now?

20 March 2015 2 Comments

Managing Your Energy, Part 39: Identity & Resistance to Choice & Change, Doing & Being

Managing Your Energy, Part 39: Identity & Resistance to Choice & Change, Doing & Being

Identity is a tar baby. When we punch it we get our mitts stuck.

From the point of view of identity, Being differently is subtilely tantamount to a kind of death. Change is considered not being “yourself” any more. Change occurs more smoothly when we do not make it about who we ARE. Simply leaning into the moment and making an aware choice, just for now, works magic over time.

Let’s use rigidity in shifting from Doing to Being as an example. Someone defines herself as a person who never lets down and relaxes is likely to find spending a week relaxing on a beach daunting or disagreeable. Changing this orientation could feel like having to be a different person. Pressure to change would evoke resistance. Going to the beach and finding something to do there, or practicing relaxing for a little while might be fine. Then it’s not about having to BE someone different, it’s just a choice in the moment.

IMG_0047Discerning our most beneficial response in the moment produces evolution. Keeping with the moment reduces self-conscious, ego-based meddling, and assumptions that spring from grand ideas about potential results. We may have a sense of Becoming, or visions of a potentialities, but each step occurs in the moment—where the action always is.

Non-attachment to the results of our labors is a traditional spiritual value. Applying it with respect to whom and what we become over time helps free us from the confines of identity, which is a limitation on the spiritual path.

From within our moment-to-moment experience, we cannot realize possibilities with which we do not yet resonate. Such potentialities are hopes, wishes, abstractions, or ideals; images of what we “should/could be,” out in the future.

Real choice in the moment requires the ability to call up the energies and create the internal conditions necessary to actualize that choice. For example, we may wish to be loving during conflict. To actually BE loving, we need to call forth the energy of love, creating first inside ourselves a true willingness to open to that love. Then we are able to alter our responses and circumstances.

The things that do and do not occur to us to do, the ways we are able to respond, and the choices that appear before us are contingent upon our “state” and our development. “State” includes: all that we are exposed to, whatever new layer of Self is ready to emerge, any wounds are currently activated or echoing in the background, and the energies we intentionally cultivate.

Our capacity for choice is predicated by the energies associated with our habitual states. In general, we are most able to influence that to which we expose ourselves and the energies we intentionally cultivate. These choices influence our state and our conditions. Cultivating positive influence and energy inspires a wider or more favorable palette of choices.

One advantage of having role models is that they tacitly suggest possibilities and ways of running our energy that do not occur to us on our own.

When we experience futility, feeling stuck, resistance, and a sense of impossibility, we are usually referencing concepts, ideas, and wounds that have become crystalized as parts of self-concept or identity. If, instead of pulling away from it, we gently embrace our sense of limitation—without identifying with the limited state—we become much more able to change our energy.

Changing our energy opens previously unavailable possibilities.

Real choice about how we run our energy in the moment is powerful magic. It requires Doing and Being at same time.

Here are some questions to ask yourself if you tend to become stuck in Doing:

  • Is Doing, at the particular moment, a choice or an automatic behavior?
  • Is Doing a defense against feeling?
  • If so, what are you trying to avoid?
  • What might happen if you suspend automatic Doing?
  • Is your current Doing based on any particular values or discernment?
  • What is your Highest Option and most important value in this particular moment?

Which one of these questions is the most on point for YOU at this point in time?

27 December 2013 4 Comments

Transformation: Balancing the Inner Masculine and Feminine

Transformation: Balancing the Inner Masculine and Feminine

The dream I had Christmas morning speaks to spiritual transformation through balancing inner masculine and feminine elements. Its message is useful to many of us:

I entered a large cathedral with a high, vaulted ceiling into an open chapel without pews. The congregation stood attentively toward the front. As I stepped forward to join, I almost passed a small, ancient woman, seated with her back to a pillar with her legs out in front of her. She was observing me gently. I recognized her as a revered holy woman I had met seven years earlier. I said, “Hello Mother,” bringing my hands together in reverent greeting.

“Hello Teresa,” she returned. She smiled at my astonishment that she remembered my name after so many years and thousands of pilgrims. In her East Indian tradition, I stooped to touch my head to her feet. She had none. Or rather, she had part of a left foot and no right foot at all. I touched my head where her feet would be, brushing the left with the crown of my head. She winced a bit.

I woke up without understanding this dream, yet knowing that it held a message for me. It felt like a gift. In the way of dreams, its imagery means something different in the world of symbols than what initially occurs to the conscious mind.

Shortly after the dream I found myself in a frustrating situation to which I felt unable to respond. As my frustration rose and crested, the meaning of my dream surfaced on its wave.

The pillar was comprised of two rectangular columns at right angles, so its footprint formed a cross. This shape made it strong and gave the pillar four inner angles where one could shelter. Among other things, the cross represents the point of intersection between the earth (horizontal) and ascending (vertical) planes of experience. The sometimes-painful point of contact between our current realities and our ideals is the “place” where our inner work occurs. It is the crucible that develops self-awareness. Columns also represent Qualthe wood element, which includes boundaries.

The Holy Mother–in this case a common person who had developed herself through devotion–represents the Positive Feminine. She is seated on stone (earth element/grounding), with her back to cement. The cement and vaulted ceiling represent the Positive Male, providing sacred structure and support.

The Positive Feminine is presented in surrender to the Divine. She JUST IS. She does not need to ACT to have VALUE. She is OF value and precious simply because she exists. She is not in self will. She is surrendered to reality. There is no where for her to fall. She is in her bliss– with or without feet is no matter. She receives support at her base from the earth and at her back from what has been build by man.

This image speaks to a real life situation in which I become stymied because it is not mine to fix. When I push too hard I go from Positive Male (structure, initiative, support, boundaries, direction) to Negative Male (over-DOing, frustration, aggression). Or I am drawn toward Negative Feminine (helplessness, passivity, indulgence, valuelessness, destruction through neglect).

Positive Feminine represents surrender into preciousness; non-doing with full spiritual value.

Why does she wince when I put down my head? Why has she no feet?

In my process of awakening so far I have brought the qualities I need in and down most of the way, but I cannot yet fully stand in them. I feel helpless when I cannot move forward, and can find contacting hard realities painful. My work point is to lean into my distress and grow stronger feet, not to force action, but to bring the Holy Feminine fully into life. Then I will have the patience to NOT act when BEing is a better choice.

Message from the Divine Feminine: “Observe yourself, through my eyes of love. I recognize and accept you. When you fully accept life exactly as it is you are not compelled to DO anything about it. Residing in inner preciousness is your place of refuge.”

How is YOUR balance between inner Male and Female energies?

Can you move freely from one to the other according to the situation, or do you get stuck in one polarity?

18 November 2011 3 Comments

Life Purpose, Part 13: Making a Difference with Energy

Life Purpose, Part 13: Making a Difference with Energy

We each impact the world at every moment. Life Purpose is about being intentional about this impact.

I recently returned from a spiritual camp in which we used breath, intention, movement, music, and concentration to bring about a very real experience of being safe, loved, and connected with the entire group and with life itself. This had nothing to do with doctrine or belief–just direct experience.

If you have had direct energy experiences of unity with others you will fully understand what I am saying. I am not talking abstraction, theory or concept. I am talking about FEELING a sense of Unity–personally and palpably. When this happens in a group we can discuss the experience with the people who were there and discover that they felt exactly the same thing that we did. If you have not experienced this, remain open and motivated.

Even when we are in distress we are one with the world. We just don’t have our attention focused in a way that allows us to notice.

Personal issues block our access to feeling Unity. We feel isolated, alone, needy, or estranged when we are out of touch with our essential unity with others. Our influence becomes less positive when we are entangled in our issues. Learning to love yourself is service to others.

If you have not done so please read the post on Inner Work as Universal Service.

Working out issues that keep us from loving ourselves IS contribution to the world:

  • It strengthens our energy connections with others by making us more available and clear.
  • It allows us to effectively support others with issues we have already healed.
  • Our impact on everyone we come in contact with is more positive, and their added ease spreads to their contacts as well.
  • It makes your energy better as we begin to broadcast happiness and love instead of distress.

What if loving yourself is the one thing you can do that makes the most difference in the world?

Accepting and being larger than our issues is a spiritual act of healing. I have seen advanced spiritual teachers fall from their state of realization and harm their followers due to unresolved inner wounds, and motivated people who were once broken blossom into loving Life Purpose.

In addition to dealing with issues that block our ability to love, we can change the world just by breathing with awareness. Any way that you get good energy flowing you impact everyone who comes in contact with you, and everyone who comes in contact with them. What you do with your energy, at home alone, matters.

Working intentionally with energy strengthens our influence, and we can learn to direct this influence. I have seen masters of energy who can clearly and powerfully impact the state and experience of a roomful of people through the qualities, frequencies, intentions, and awareness they place on their breath. Their prayers pack a wallop. They did not develop these skills by wanting to change people. They developed themselves.

The most important way we make a difference is through Presence, full attention, and our love. BEing in the moment has intrinsic value. When we bring ourselves fully into the current moment in a spirit of contribution the question of Purpose dissolves into direct, internal, moment-to-moment guidance.

Sense of Purpose is a form of internal guidance. Being in touch with your inner sense of purpose from moment to moment–let alone Life Purpose–rests on the same skills necessary to receive all other types of inner guidance.

The next blog series will be about Guidance.

What does it mean to YOU to make a difference in the world?

What have you done that has helped to develop your Sense of Guidance?

11 November 2011 3 Comments

Life Purpose, Part 12: Getting On with It

Life Purpose, Part 12: Getting On with It

This post speaks to additional challenges with Purpose.

The problem with “needing to know” is that intense focus on the mind and on outcome block the processes of feeling and intuition—the channels through which the information you long for might otherwise come.

So many people want to “know” what their Purpose IS. Beyond presupposing that Purpose is like a job, and that it doesn’t change, this prevailing attitude implies that we are equipped to live out Purpose without needing to be in touch from moment to moment.

Life paths are like labyrinths. They twist and wind, and we often cannot tell whether we are getting closer or farther away from our goal of returning to the center. The answer of one moment may not suffice in the next. Each challenge along the way calls for the discernment to commit more deeply, or to establish a new direction.

Being whole-hearted whenever we possibly can is one of the best investments we can make. Even if we make mistakes with more vigor, we then learn quickly and do not repeat them.

I have been deeply touched and honored to be present as clients discover Life Purpose. At times Purpose pops up quickly and clearly, like a revelation or an insight. When this occurs we are communing together in a state of grace, perceiving together.

If someone else tells you what your supposed Purpose is and you cannot feel it for yourself this can cause intense and painful confusion. That person has no way to assume responsibility for their effects on your life if they mislead you.

A healer once told me I had a strong and abiding connection with and should be following a certain Master, she with whom she was connected. After checking in and finding I felt no internal connection with this man I felt kind of slimed. Fortunately I was intuitive enough to sort this out easily for myself.

Occasionally I meet someone who cannot seem to keep alight the fire of inspiration or make anything matter enough to fully engage themselves. We’ve probably all had days when nothing trumps anything else. We stir around wishing we wanted something enough to feel connected with a goal or take purposeful action. This feels worse than being really hungry and not being able to find anything you feel like eating, and can go on and on for weeks, months and perhaps years.

Remember the time between high school and college when grownups always asked, “Are you working or are you in school?” Without purpose or plan you may feel useless and flat yet intensely frustrated, tied up with too many choices you don’t relate to, looking ahead at the daunting task of making a critically important choice, without information or inspiration. Where to start eating that elephant?

Lack or loss of goals and dreams can be devastating. I have wished I could do their work for them, but even when I have found and lit a spark, they themselves need to keep the fire going.

If you still have trouble developing a relationship to Purpose, here are some serious suggestions:

  • Rule out physical causes such as clinical depression, low thyroid, adrenal hypofunction, low testosterone, neurotransmitter imbalances, blood sugar and chronic occult (hidden) viral issues.
  • Then address feelings, beliefs, and the intersection of the two, as discussed in Post #2. Do this with a proficient therapist or healer.
  • Answer the questions that have come up through this series.
  • Read the Inner Work series. [link]
  • Get help to clear out energy that does not belong with you, that you may be carrying from a parent or other source.
  • Find ways to increase your physical and spiritual energy.
  • If it works for you ask the Universe or pray for Life Purpose, remember to stay in humility, openness, and surrender.

Remember: Purpose is a sense. Hence: Sense of Purpose.

Use sense about your purposes.

When you heal yourself you can attract and sustain what is best for you. If you do not, you are likely to undermine what you want.

Remember: We need to be in partnership with life, not control it.

Like any other type of sense, Sense of Purpose is a skill to nurture and develop.

Sense of Purpose and ultimately Sense of Guidance are developed by making a daily habit out of paying attention to what we really feel and need and what life is currently inviting, making choices that support our best interests.

What do YOU do to get in touch with your feelings, senses, or intuition?

What is your worst fear about being in touch with your intuition?

4 November 2011 0 Comments

Life Purpose, Part 11: Misconceptions About Life Purpose, Part 2

Life Purpose, Part 11: Misconceptions About Life Purpose, Part 2

Continuing our tour through common misconceptions . . .

What you do for meaning should provide money and security:

Some people’s purposes in life have nothing to do with their profession or pocketbook. Others are intimately related. If you hold Purpose hostage to what you are trying to GET from life you may miss what you need to BECOME or CONTRIBUTE to be happy.

While some are busy trying to get rich or engaging their fears of the future they are neglecting their actual Life Purpose.

When your inner values and spirit inform your external life you are more likely to be happy than you will be if you allow external goals to become your entire life.

Getting what you want leads to happiness:

Haven’t you ever gotten exactly what you thought you wanted only to discover that the worm in the apple weighed almost as much as the apple itself? Learn from this. Square peg, round hole. Square peg, round hole. . .

Your desires got you into involved in the schoolyard of life. Now use your intuition to enhance your choices.

Success Story: I can never forget the rich man I met once in a workshop. He had his “ideal job, dream home with swimming pool and tennis court, trophy wife, and 1.5 kids”. He woke up one morning and realized all this wasn’t who he was. He hardly knew his wife and kids beyond the roles they played with one another, and he wasn’t happy. His wife was wedded to the things and images he was now considering giving up to discover his true Self.

One of the keys to a meaningful life is learning to listen to deep desires of your heart, which create positive momentum in life, while relaxing superficial desires that drain or distract.

Life Purpose requires a time line and a plan:

Life Purpose lives in the realm of heart and soul. Some people enact their Life Purpose without ever knowing–intellectually–what it is. We may actualize goals that express meaning and purpose without intentionally creating a structure.

Goals and dreams that motivate and inspire us may or may not belong on our to-do lists. Whether or not we accomplish them is less important than having a positive reason to get out of bed in the morning.

If you ever watched “The Matrix” you may recall that in giving up the notion that he was “The One,” the main character experienced things that led to him realizing he ACTUALLY WAS “The One.” Sometimes the purpose of plans, events, and lesser purposes is to position us for greater Purposes than the ones we are consciously planning. Life does not conform to static forms but morphs and shifts, especially when we transform.

Being good at something means you are supposed to do it:

Advice abounds to the effect that if you’re good at something or have the equipment you should aim to make a living at it. Got long fingers? Play the piano or guitar. Sometimes it’s true–but it is certainly not a cosmic rule.

I would have made a great lawyer—and been miserable. It’s not all about money and talent. When I started there was no name for what I do, but I ended up here. I am not sure this would have occurred if I had determinedly imagined I was “supposed to” do something else.

Avoid jumping at something just because you can do it well. And as for this “supposing” thing. Take responsibility for being the one doing the supposing!

Sometimes skills and talent represent traits and qualities that are already fully developed. You might find more purpose in developing new skills, and stretching into undiscovered talents in pursuit of wholeness and expression.

Your Purpose means living up to your full potential:

The point of pursuing your potential is motivation, self-discovery, expression of values, living with full engagement, meaningful contribution, and overcoming imaginary limitations. The point is not to exploit every possible asset.

One of the five biggest regrets at the end of life is:

“I wish that I had let myself be happier.”

Let’s be realistic. Given human potential, there isn’t remotely enough time in a life to live out your full potential. You possess so many potential skills, talents, and capacities that full potential is not possible. Don’t exhaust yourself trying to become something. Be who you ARE and find out what gives you a sense of purpose, meaning, and pleasure. Pick that.

You are worth just as much even if you live an ordinary life–if such a thing exists.

What do YOU do to make a difference?

How does doing it make you feel or impact your life?