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Friday, December 27 2019

Room in the Inn

 

         In the tradition where I was raised, the birth of Jesus is celebrated as the Incarnation – God taking human form in the person of Jesus. 

 

         I’ve often wondered when that realization of oneness with God happened for Jesus.  Was it a gradual dawning or a sudden inspiration?  At some point he knew – not as an abstraction, but fiercely, in his bones:  God lives in us; we and God are inseparable.  This knowing is sometimes called Christ Consciousness.

 

         Huston Smith, an author who has immersed himself deeply in the study of world religions, has concluded that there are four approaches to God:  Pantheism (many Gods), Atheism (no God), Monotheism (one God) and Mysticism (all is God). 

 

         Jesus was a mystic.  I believe that his claim of oneness with God included all of us.  His radical message invites us to see ourselves as he saw himself – and as he sees us.

 

         In the traditional Christmas story, there was no room in the inn for the birth of Jesus.  For me, that story urges us to make room in our inns – our hearts – for Christ Consciousness. 

 

         What reverence might then we bring to ourselves, to each other and to this planet!  

 

         Peace on earth.  Good will to all.

 

        

 

Posted by: AT 05:04 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, December 15 2019

Whyte on Friendship

 

 

         The lyric line, “I get by with a little help from my friends,” - written by Paul McCartney and famously sung by Ringo Starr – is one of my favorites.

 

         David Whyte explores this theme more deeply in an essay, entitled Friendship, from his book, Consolations.  I share this excerpt for your edification – and mine. 

 

 

 

"FRIENDSHIP is a mirror to presence and a testament to forgiveness. Friendship not only helps us see ourselves through another’s eyes, but can be sustained over the years only with someone who has repeatedly forgiven us for our trespasses as we must find it in ourselves to forgive them in turn. A friend knows our difficulties and shadows and remains in sight, a companion to our vulnerabilities more than our triumphs, when we are under the strange illusion we do not need them. An undercurrent of real friendship is a blessing exactly because its elemental form is rediscovered again and again through understanding and mercy. All friendships of any length are based on a continued, mutual forgiveness. Without tolerance and mercy all friendships die.

 

“In the course of the years a close friendship will always reveal the shadow in the other as much as ourselves, to remain friends we must know the other and their difficulties and even their sins and encourage the best in them, not through critique but through addressing the better part of them, the leading creative edge of their incarnation, thus subtly discouraging what makes them smaller, less generous, less of themselves. 

 

“Through the eyes of a real friendship an individual is larger than their everyday actions, and through the eyes of another we receive a greater sense of our own personhood, one we can aspire to, the one in whom they have the most faith. Friendship is a moving frontier of understanding not only of the self and the other but also, of a possible and as yet unlived, future.

 

“Friendship is the great hidden transmuter of all relationship: it can transform a troubled marriage, make honorable a professional rivalry, make sense of heartbreak and unrequited love and become the newly discovered ground for a mature patent-child relationship.

 

“The dynamic of friendship is almost always underestimated as a constant force in human life: a diminishing circle of friends is the first terrible diagnostic of a life in deep trouble: of overwork, of too much emphasis on a professional identity, of forgetting who will be there when our armored personalities run into the inevitable natural disasters and vulnerabilities found in even the most average existence…

 

“Friendship transcends disappearance: an enduring friendship goes on after death, the exchange only transmuted by absence, the relationship advancing and maturing in a silent internal conversational way even after one half of the bond has passed on.

 

“But no matter the medicinal virtues of being a true friend or sustaining a long close relationship with another, the ultimate touchstone of friendship is not improvement, neither of the other nor of the self, the ultimate touchstone is witness, the privilege of having been seen by someone and the equal privilege of being granted the sight of the essence of another, to have walked with them and to have believed in them, and sometimes just to have accompanied them for however brief a span, on a journey impossible to accomplish alone."

 

 

 

 

Posted by: AT 11:00 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, December 05 2019

 

 

Mother Earth Qi Healing

 

 

         Yesterday morning, I enjoyed breakfast with my friend Jerry, who is a QiGong Master.  He told me about an exercise he learned from our teacher, Spring Forest QiGong Master Chunyi Lin.  I tried it in meditation group tonight – and it went so well, I thought I’d share it with you.

 

         The exercise draws on the loving/healing energy of the earth, Mother Earth Qi, and involves moving light of various colors up through the main, vertical energy channel in the body – from the perineum at the base of the torso to the crown at the top of the head.  This can be done lying down, sitting or standing.

 

         First thing in the morning, before getting out of bed, Jerry practices Mother Earth Qi healing.  He touches the perineum with the fingertips of his left hand and the crown with his right-hand fingertips.  According to Jerry, the physical touch helps, but is not necessary.  The energy can move just fine with only visualization/imagination.

 

         The twilight time just after awakening can be an especially powerful time for healing/transformation.  Other times can also work well.

 

         Here is the sequence Jerry suggests.  Note that it includes seven healing colors and (for the last five colors) the organ system and healing emotion that correspond to the color.

 

         Gold – a powerful, all-body healing color

         Purple – a color for spiritual transformation/healing

         Green – heals the liver system – happiness energy

         Red – heals the heart system – joy energy

         Yellow – heals the stomach – peace energy

         White – heals the lungs – contentment energy

         Blue  - heals the kidneys – gratitude energy

 

         The practice can be done quickly – opening the perineum (with touch or visualization to signal the intention to open) and imagining each color moving up the main channel between the perineum and crown – not focusing so much on the specific organ systems or emotions.

 

         The meditation/exercise I guided tonight took a good 45 minutes.  We spent time upfront connecting with Mother Earth.  We lingered with the movement of each color.  We bathed each organ system in its corresponding light and healing emotion.  We moseyed.  With plenty of quiet time, the process deepened naturally – and powerfully.

 

         Some final thoughts:

 

1.     I found it helpful – but not necessary – to coordinate the upward movement of energy with my in-breath. 

2.   If you decide to try this practice, please don’t work too hard.  Don’t aim for perfection. 

3.   Feel free to adapt this exercise in any way that suits you.  For example, you can spend more time, or even most of your time, in a particular area where healing light is most needed.

 

         Mother Earth Qi is an amazing resource.  Enjoy!

Posted by: AT 12:13 am   |  Permalink   |  Email

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