Friday, June 13, 2008

Creating Valuable Space

Expand… and suddenly you can’t ignore your own vastness!

Regarding mental clutter, Shri Brahmananda Sarasvati said: “Without space, creation cannot take place. When you purchase a house, you purchase the space, which is surrounded by the walls. The more space, the more valuable the house. You cannot think anything if you have no space within your mind. You cannot welcome any guest in your house if you have no space within your house. You cannot receive any thought from outside if you have no space within your mind.”

I love the way this analogy really drives it home for me. I find when I look upon the times that I am feeling stuck, whether in work, relationship, or in any unfavorable reaction that may arise in a given day, I can see it relates directly from my over thinking and mental spinning. When I think of words that define a positive and receptive state of mind, it makes sense that they come to me as: “clear” and “open”. There truly is a feeling of “spaciousness” when my inner and outer worlds are in harmony.

My clutter always comes with a story. If I were to look at it clearly, I could, no doubt, trace it back to old belief patterns that try to convince me that I am right. It will tell me that I have all the information to assess whatever situation is before me and all that information is true, therefore, I need not take it further. This can show up by way of a casual conversation, planning my day, driving to the store, cooking dinner – in short, my daily life. So because of these beliefs driven by personal historical content, I become closed and unreceptive to any new perspective. But, by keeping an “open” mind, I can “clear” my mental space. In Buddhism, they call this “beginner’s mind”, which now provides room for “new guests” – even if they seem familiar – to roam or rest in the expanse I have cultivated by dropping the history. More space… more value!

Sat Nam!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Celebrating Half a Century

Be Alive… and suddenly consciousness exists in every cell of your being.

Yesterday, my body and I celebrated our 50 year anniversary together. It was a simple, albeit, significant day, a day of honoring exactly where we are together; all the aches and pains and new wrinkles, the fluctuating moods that come with perri-menopause, and not to mention the ever so slightly, but definite beginnings of the dreaded “meno-pot”. However, it was also a day of mindfully thanking and honoring the beauty, strength, resilience and grace of: these feet that have walked hundreds of miles to get me wherever I needed to go; these legs that have danced me into oblivion a countless number of times; this spine, so strong in supporting this structure in all its unlimited (and limited!) ways; these arms for all the hugs they’ve ever given AND received; these shoulders for carrying the weight of all the challenges they’ve ever had to bear; these eyes for all the beauty there is to see; these ears for experiencing the infinite vibrations of sound; this nose for all the memories it can conjure from one simple sniff; this tongue for to taste, talk, sing; and this heart… not only for keeping the blood flowing through these veins, but for the love, the compassion, the gratitude and the forgiveness as well as the sorrow and suffering that all comes from being painfully and joyfully human.

Happy Birthday to Us, and to Us a birthday EVERY day.

Blessings and Sat Nam!