Category Archives: Seven Spiritual Laws of Success

Making a Life

“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”
Winston Churchill

This is a giving season. We are thinking how best to please those we love. We are filled with love and wanting to give.

Please remember those who are not on your list. Remember those who have no one to love them.

Remember to love the unloveable.

And remember to give from your heart.

You will find plenty of people with needs and causes with credibility.

Life Student

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Filed under Living our best life, Quotations, Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, The energy we put into the world comes back to us

Oneness

Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a relationship between equals. … Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity.”― Pema Chödrön

There is a recurring theme in my life. Perhaps I am just not getting it and I have to hear the same thing over and over until I do.

In a course on Social Psychology I was assigned a Day of Compassion. I took Pema’s quote as my definition of compassion; as understanding my oneness with everyone on earth. If I truly see each person as an extension of myself, then I should want to be as caring about his or her life as I am of my own. And so I began:

During any day I have more interaction with my husband than with anyone else. Throughout my DOC, I made extra effort to connect with him. When he came into a room I stopped what I was doing and listened attentively. I looked directly at him in all conversations and made every attempt not to be sidetracked or distracted when he was with me. After all, it is easy to take those for granted those who are the closest…to make a date for connection instead of practicing it each moment.

When I was undergoing treatment at a doctor’s office I look at the technician with new eyes. I engaged in meaningful conversation with her and interestingly, she was very open and related personal feelings stories. It was a soulful interchange rather than the normal office chat.

There were people with whom I had difficulty identifying. For instance, in my exercise class I was put off by the critical attitude of a participant. As I did my deep knee bends I realized that my attitude toward her was just as critical. I took a deep breath and spent some time thinking about why we feel it necessary to express our negative thoughts as pronouncement of the truth.

Sometimes I was brought up short by my thoughts. For instance, watching a fairly heavy young woman feed her child sweets, it was easier for me to get into a judgmental pattern rather than knowing that I didn’t (when my children were young) and still don’t always make wise choices. This young woman and I are not so different.

As I sat down to eat my lunch and watch a taped episode of “The Chew”, I found that it had been preempted by coverage of the anniversary of the March on Washington. Watching the faces in the crowd and the historical footage of the original March, I put myself firmly in the place of thousands of people who stood for freedoms so many years ago and could now stand before a black president and rejoice in the progress made while at the same time realizing how much compassion is necessary to change attitudes even today.

My behavior may not have been greatly different on my DOC, i.e. on any given day I would have helped the young people push their car home when their battery was dead. (I was kind of happy that it happened that day, though, so that I could feel as if I did the traditional good deed.)

But, more importantly, my awareness was heightened. My self-perception has changed.  I see that in this context  I distance myself from behaviors that I don’t like, attributing them to others rather than understanding that I am capable of anything.

Interestingly, being compassionalte was work for me. An on-the-ground exercise in oneness required focus. Perhaps if I can maintain it every day, eventually it will become more natural to truly comprehend the practice.

Oneness is more than a spiritual concept. I share with all. I am all. I am not separate.

The Student

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Filed under Buddhism, Living our best life, Quotations, Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, The Bible, When we know better, we do better

Self-referral

Why is it so easy for me to accept others’ assessment of me…good or bad?

Deepak Chopra defines self-referral as “The experience (…) that our internal reference point is our own spirit, and not the objects of our experience. The opposite of self-referral is object-referral. In object-referral we are always influenced by objects outside the Self, which include situations, circumstances, people, and things. In object-referral we are constantly seeking the approval of others. Our thinking and our behavior are always in anticipation of a response.”

This seems simple.  I, after all, live with me on a day-by-day basis. I may not know who I am all of the time, but I surely know who I am not.

Even still, I am struggling to see myself as worthy because I have been judged as unworthy.  I am questioning my heart because I have been told that my love isn’t pure and true. Mean and thoughtless acts have been attributed to me and so I am questioning my motives.

Before I can totally deny all allegations I must examine my feelings of joy when someone finds me wonderful.  I need to remember that I have been given credit for worthy deeds and accepted accolades.

Ultimately, I check in with my own soul.  I expand with the peace and love within and return to what is true for me.

It’s a journey.

Life Student

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October 10, 2012 · 9:56 am