Here’s this month’s audio guided meditation:
If you would like to see the audio meditation with nature photographs, here’s the link to the youtube version:
895th Week: Noticing the “New You”
In a recent class I took through Lorian.org, we were presented with the thought that each time we bring something into our lives, be it a job, a development, an object, an accomplishment, a relationship, an activity, what comes to us brings with it a “new you”. The underlying idea is that we are changed by the things that enter our life, whatever those “things” may be.
I’ve been very taken with this idea, as it invited me to pay more attention to changes I might notice as I move through experiences and situations. For example, for a number of years, I’ve read about quantum physics and have had a commitment to move beyond my conditioned linear thinking. Starting in 1982, I began to experience and work with the optimal future self and optimal futures, and I offered this process to people as an inner journey to meet their optimal future self. As a result of diving even deeper into quantum dynamics, I found myself thinking one day about the way in which the optimal future arrives and arises in our lives without our necessarily being aware of the process.
This shift in my thinking orients more, now, to being open to receive my optimal future, based on the fact that quantum physics appears to demonstrate that there is an infinite array of possibilities moving in and out of manifest reality all the time. (As I write this, I can imagine the groans of quantum physicists…)
Anyhow, for me this is an example of the “new you” dynamic of allowing something to deepen into my life, to affect my awareness and perceptions of the world around me. There can be much more subtle shifts pointing to a “new you”, as when you have a thought you’ve never had before, experience an understanding that hasn’t been accessible until now, find yourself orienting to an activity that didn’t interest you before…that kind of thing.Read More “”
If you’d like to experience this meditation with nature images, here’s a link to the youtube version:
I woke up one morning—on one of those delicious mornings when I was able to awaken naturally, without an alarm—and discovered that I was smiling. It was a surprising discovery, as the smile was simply planted on my face and wasn’t going anywhere. Read More “Week 621: Mouth Yoga”
Note: At the bottom of this written practice there is a recording of it, if you would prefer to listen. In the practices that contain a guided meditation, please remember never to listen to these recorded meditations when driving or working with dangerous machinery.
One of the themes I’ve noticed in my work in recent years is an increasing emphasis on inviting clients to notice their wholeness, and on accepting the fact that our human wholeness includes aspects of ourselves that we don’t particularly like. This means acknowledging and accepting these aspects of self, recognizing that we can’t remove or eliminate parts of our human wholeness.
One metaphor I use for managing wholeness when we’re in touch with things about ourselves that we want to hide or exorcise is a rainbow. We can’t take a color out of the rainbow, even if we don’t like it. Another metaphor is the foreground/background dynamic I’ve written about a number of times, where aspects of our wholeness are sometimes in the foreground of our awareness and behavior and then sometimes in the background. Whatever moves into the foreground can be invited into the background and whatever lives in the background can be invited forward.
In addition to becoming aware of and engaging more consciously the foreground/background dynamic inherent in our wholeness, one of the practices I’ve encouraged people to engage is to imagine that they put a gentle arm around parts of themselves that they don’t like. This would include aspects of themselves that generate shame or discomfort of some other kind, ways of being that they see in themselves that they swore they would never express, responses and behaviors that embarrass them or that they dislike intensely. We can’t escape our wholeness, but we can learn to relate to this fact of being with kindness and gentleness rather than with criticism, aggression, and anger.
And so, for this week’s practice in conscious living, I invite you to explore the following guided meditation and notice what works for you and what doesn’t. Please be sure to allow and track mixed feelings, as they are inherent in our wholeness. The key is to bring awareness to them without having to do anything with them right now.Read More “889th Week: Embracing Wholeness with Kindness”
As I begin this practice in conscious living, it’s 5 degrees outside with a sparkling blue sky and strong wind. I find that I am deeply grateful to be indoors, to have heat, and have no reason to go outdoors on this very cold day. What this brings to mind are all the people who don’t have this choice because they work in jobs that serve the rest of us—in the post office, trash collection, the local Starbuck’s and other businesses, fire fighters and other emergency personnel, bus drivers, subway operators, cab drivers. The list goes on and on and, as I think about them, I am filled with gratitude. I also feel concern for them, as it’s a day when it’s not really safe to be outside.
What this brings to mind is the importance of gratitude. It’s a response that not only nurtures one’s own well-being, but it also orients awareness to the contributions of so many participants in our daily lives. Those contributors may be people, they may be other-than-human companions, they may be offerings from nature—food, water, fresh air.
As I write this, I’m eating a pear. What an amazing gift! I often find myself mystified as to how Nature draws on a dynamic creativity that generates all the amazing life forms on this planet. Ecology at times leaves me speechless with its complexity and fundamental collaborative/cooperative underpinnings, so my gratitude, including amazement, often orients itself to the dynamic creativity and intelligence of this planet’s eco-systems.Read More “906th Week: Gratitude“