Tag Archives: Prayer

Choosing Joy As My Compass

ImageThis past week I attended the Unity Institute Ministerial Student’s prayer service for Unity’s World Day of Prayer—grateful for the opportunity to be there with friends from Unity Church of Manhattan who were visiting Unity Village. Ever since that service I have been exploring the idea of what it means to be among “The Chosen.”

With world affairs like they are right now, and the chaos that has taken place in my life and the life of my dear ones, it has been a fascinating reflection. For many throughout history this idea of being among “The” Chosen has been indicative of some form of superiority—whether it be racial, religious, cultural, or otherwise—also implying inferiority for the ‘un’-Chosen. That just doesn’t work for me, and isn’t working for the world at large.

Throughout history, especially in religious thought, we have evolved our thought processes with some form of this concept of being chosen—individually and/or collectively. The Chosen One or The Chosen People—even The Chosen Land—seem to be universal archetypes. It’s time that we evolve our understanding of this archetype even further. We are stuck in old paradigms of thought  that no longer serve our greater good. I suggest we develop a new understanding based on knowing the truth of our oneness, removing all concepts of superiority and inferiority.

While all archetypes have positive and negative aspects, in and of themselves they are neutral and it’s our choice what aspects of an archetype we choose to express. How do we choose differently? Through prayer we align ourselves with God and get out of the way of our innate divinity expressing.

“The call of the Universe is the call to come up higher, to take charge of your life, to release your imprisoned splendor… In our praying we are hearing the call of the universe and responding to it” (Eric Butterworth, “The Universe is Calling”)

We are each and every one of us called and “The Chosen” are simply those who choose to say yes to expressing their divine calling in this life experience. This is not a choice we make once and ‘whallah’ we are “The Chosen One.” Jesus invested a liftime in learning to make this choice with his every thought, word and action so that he could be the means by which God came into expression through his life experience–and it’s our job to do the same. We must continue to say yes to embodying the call of the universe with every choice we make.

That is part of the reason you haven’t heard from me of late. I have been investing energy into looking at times in my life when I chose not to say yes to the call, to recognizing and removing the perceived roadblocks that those choices may have placed in my way of being the expression of God in the world. It seemed to me that the rheostat of my emotional nature needed some adjustment. Years ago, while doing some work with the tools taught by the Institute of HeartMath, I realized that a huge piece of my purpose here in this experience is “to experience life in all its joy and glory”–yet it seemed to me from my life that my emotional rheostat was set to a different experience. I’ve set about readjusting the rheostat of my emotional nature to those frequencies that I consider expressions of the positive aspects of this archetype—most specifically joy.

In the late 80’s and early 90’s I was blessed with the opportunity for several summers to spend a week in retreat with the author Alan Cohen who hammered home the idea of holding joy as your compass in life’s choices

Joy is not the result of getting what you want; it is the way to get what you want. In the deepest sense, joy is what you want. (Alan Cohen) 

I’ve been recalibrating my emotional rheostat AND my internal compass to joy—choosing to say YES to making a positive impact on our shared experience. Care to join me in that choice?

Peace of Mind

I started this blog specifically with the idea of “Pondering New Paradigms,” reflecting on my experience of making intentional change to bring about a complete shift in my life. With each day I expand my realization that this is a huge (and amazing) commitment—one that is no longer optional.

I had a deep conviction that if I wanted to change the way my physical body is manifesting, changing what actually goes into my body was part of the equation. When I didn’t follow through in as timely a manner as my body would have liked, I receive a diagnosis of prednisone induced diabetes. Okay—incorporated that into my experience and things seemed to be going well—and then no! My body decides I’m not listening, and my gall bladder begins to dysfunction. The solution? A plant based, vegan diet. I realized recently that I had moved on to this new experience without incorporating the previous change.  If a complete shift is what I strive for, I must remember one of the most important lessons from Ministerial School…to transcend and include.

Which brings me to the next change I envision, something I know is extremely important to this experience—meditation. I’m talking meditation, not prayer. I pray a lot—meditate, not so much. Well, that’s not exactly the truth. I do meditate quite a bit when in the hospital. Maybe that’s why I’ve ended up back there a few times? Not listening so my body had to show me?? Maybe. I’m listening now.

The thing is, I had to pick up the current meditation book I am reading several times before I could get past their use of the word ‘mind.’ It’s a great book, and it’s reminding me of what I know to be capital-T Truth. The true power in the work I have been doing is spiritual, requiring a shift in my spiritual energy. A work in process…let’s get back to the use of that word.

It’s an age old discussion, and many of those reading this may choose to disagree with my definition, yet for me it is really important to this discussion. A paradigm shift comes when we make holistic changes, which requires a holistic understanding of mind. The popular practice is to use the words mind and brain or even mind and thought (or even feeling) interchangeable. I’ve invested many years of ‘thought’ to realize that this just doesn’t work for me. The mind is so much more than the brain, as are thoughts and feelings. In fact, while the heart is amazing, the mind is much more than the heart. The mind is much more than the entire body.

In Atom Smashing Power of Mind, Charles Fillmore (co-founder of Unity) says:
“God is Mind, and man [who is] made in the image and likeness of God is Mind, because there is but one Mind, and that [one Mind is] the Mind of God.” (p 93)

Notice the capitalization of the letter “M”— this meant Charles was talking about the absolute realm or Divine Mind. We—all of humanity—exist in unity with the one eternal Mind out of which our temporal or relative experience is made manifest. Our mind is the Beingness of God; our life and experience the beingness of mind. We have a threefold nature—spirit, soul, and body—and mind encompasses our entire being.

So, where is this little rant going? It’s taking me to a deeper understanding of the importance and power of meditation in the healing process. Healing is not just about the body, it is about our entire beingness. I know this, and yet I have found it easy to act as if I’ve forgotten. Perfect health requires a coherency that expresses throughout the mind—connecting spirit-soul-body as a coherent expression of Divine Mind. It’s not just about the spirit-mind connection or the body-mind connection—it’s all of the above, and so much more.

My concept of mind is the combined electromagnetic field generated around the body. It’s when this field is in a state of coherence that lasting paradigm shifts can take place and we can express our full Beingness. This also works as we join together in groups, as we combine our energy fields into one field. In fact, it works for me when talking about the energy field of all that is and ever will be.

Would love to hear your thoughts as you join me in pondering new paradigms…

Namaste’