I’ve written many times about the power of orienting awareness to heart perception and intelligence. This is because the resonating quality of the heart automatically orients us to a sense of connection with the world around us. The qualities we embody as we move through our daily lives have an impact not only on our internal quality of experience but also have a noticeable impact on the places where we find ourselves and on those we encounter along the way.
I find that, when I’m in an irritable mood, I seem to “bump up against” life in so many unexpected and irritating ways. When it dawns on me that I’m resonating with the frequency of irritation, and that this is the quality that currently characterizes my experience, I’m now able to take a moment, ground myself, and shift into my heart space, doing a couple of heart breaths similar to what HeartMath suggests. This shift changes my focus of attention and I am then able to resonate with a more positive and connected quality of being and experience. I’ve found over time that this kind of shift also changes my external experience and I tend to stop bumping up against what comes my way. Read More “735th Week: Choosing Your Frequency”
I’ve written before about some of the basic teachings I received from my grandmother between the ages of 10 and 16, when she was my first spiritual teacher. One of the important things I took from those years was my understanding of what she called “the raincloud of knowable things”. Because she believed and lived in a sense of collective consciousness, her experience was that there is nothing in the world that “belongs” to any one person or group. In the “raincloud of knowable things”, all ideas, creative possibilities, deep understandings are available to everyone, everywhere, all the time. Read More “701st Week: Revisiting the “Raincloud of Knowable Things””
Here’s our November meditation. If you’d rather do this meditation with images, we’ve also included our YouTube version…
Here’s the YouTube version:
For mental health practitioners and others in the healing arts, it’s helpful to have a way to sit with people’s suffering and distress without getting caught up in it ourselves. In reality, for everyone, regardless of the focus of your work, it’s helpful to have a way to cope with the suffering and distress in the world so that you don’t become swept away by it.
For me, doing therapy with an open heart is essential and yet having my heart open means that I can’t ignore, deny, or distance myself from the suffering of others. Instead, I use the Buddhist practice of Tonglen to metabolize and manage the emotional experiences—my own and those of others—that touch my heart or threaten to overwhelm it. What I want to share is my version of this practice. In Sanskrit, Tonglen means taking and sending, and it’s a breathing practice that focuses on neutralizing activating emotions in oneself and in others in the world who feel the same way.Read More “754th Week: Psychological Support in Troubled Times”
Given the conflicted state of our human family, a state we’re more aware of than ever with our globally interconnected network on the web, practices that support a sense of relatedness are needed for all of us. I’ve written many times about how we are kin not only with every other human being on the planet but also with every other lifeform. All of us are born of this planet, which makes all of us part of one earth family.
I started to write a practice on lovingkindness, which I’ve written about many times, and then found myself shifting into thinking about a practice more focused on recognizing our kinship with one another from a particular perspective—from what Thich Nhat Hanh has described: we interare. He has coined a word, a verb, which is also a concept: interbeing. Charles Eisenstein uses this concept in his work, as well, and I recommend watching videos of his on YouTube. Interbeingmeans that we are inescapably interconnected and interdependent, that there is no way for us to be separate from one another nor from the ecological framework of our source of physical life—from Nature, from every functioning aspect of our planet and all the lifeforms on it.Read More “777th Week: Revisiting the Reality of Interbeing”
Sitting in Central Park the other day—one of my first leisurely days in the park during this new season of lush green—I found myself doing a lot of smiling. Often, I sit on a bench under a large tree near a walkway that a number of people use, even early in the morning. On this particular day, Read More “Week 635: Sharing Smiles”