Through the days and weeks we start on our journey and become accustomed to using our tools and guides and also become aware of new ways to view ourselves and our reality. We are learning to bring Beauty, Truth and Light to the core of our existence and to imbue our relationships, our homes and our work and play with our soul’s qualities. Above all, because we learn to listen in the silence and to separate the wisdom of the soul from the cries and judgements of the ego, we learn to love and trust and be guided by our own soul - above all else. We also live in the comfort of knowing that our soul is connected directly to the totality of all that has existed, that now exists and all that will exist – that is to say, the repository of the past, the repository of all ‘potential’, and the repository of the ineffable mysteries and magic of Beauty, Truth, Art, Music and Nature. Thus linked so securely to our own source and to our own purpose and wellbeing, we allow soul to choose for us and to guide our steps.
In the knowledge that we have perpetual access to our inner guide and through practising and using the tools with which we have been provided, we find that life is increasingly calm and precious and meaningful; that we live and sleep and eat and play with greater ease; that we serve others gladly; and then we experience an innate and continuous sense of being joyfully alive.
We have achieved our goal – Joyful Aliveness. And in this state we have mastery of ourselves, are effective in our endeavours, pulling our weight, aligned with the highest and the best, an example for others. We feel joyful and fully alive.
Joyful Aliveness - Soulful Living
Our Tools and Guides
To help us on our pilgrimage, we will create a map, identify our destination and collect a number of vital supplies and tools. These come to us as gentle and beneficial disciplines and require practice and dedication.
The perpetual giving of thanks acknowledges the impact of the world on ourselves and vice versa. Giving thanks replaces complaint and judgement and may be done silently or aloud. An abundance of Gratitude leads naturally to:
The next stage in our pilgrimage is learning the power we have in simple and silent or spoken blessing. We become a source of power and benefit for others through blessing. Our ability to bless shows that we do not hide our lamp under a bush; it shows that we are not afraid of our greatness; it demonstrates that we do not have to stand down for fear of making others seem inadequate. Blessing also harnesses our skills, training and talents to assist in practical ways. Blessing is the first step in the manifest expression of universal and unconditional love.
We learn to invite Grace and to recognize unbidden Grace. Forgiveness, Gratitude and Blessing invite Grace to flow with greater intensity.
The Prayer that we learn is not a plea to a deity but a statement of intent, gratitude and belief. It opens the connections between universal consciousness and our soul, and between our soul and our lived lives. It may be used in conjunction with the other tools we have learned to use, or else when used with deep attention in a meditative state, it may stand in place of all the aforementioned practices and disciplines, when we have a limited amount of time.
We learn that being acquainted with and listening to our soul leads to a path of action. When such action is also in service of others and conducted within the framework of the highest and best, then we know that our pilgrimage is blessed and fulfilled.
This is 'The Key' to a happy and successful practical life. Asking for forgiveness for self, self in relation to others, and others in relations to others. All of this cleans out our conscious, unconscious and collective unconscious closets; it heals us and heals the world. “I am sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you.” becomes our relentless mantra in this respect; and this act of humility and taking responsibility and not blame is the starting point of any personal transformation.
Awareness and Mindfulness.
These are disciplines we learn to exercise every day.
Awareness is an alertness to what is happenening in us and our surroundings moment to moment. Since we are making choices every moment, we learn to place conscious awareness ahead of choices and decisions. A developed faculty of awareness in the conscious mind also trains the unconscious mind to become more aware and alert in its decision making. Mindfulness is a tool of investigation and is gentle and akin to a meditative process, but brings a 'floodlight' to a phenomenon, process or deliberation rather than the 'spotlight' associated with focused meditation
We consider three very different types of meditation, each of which has a different technique and purpose.
1. Socratic Meditation – a process which involves accessing the conscious and unconscious mind during contemplation; and then posing to ourselves pertinent questions about where is our fear, our anxiety and our joy.
2. Kriya – a meditation process that examines and fortifies our energy body, and thereby strengthens the health of our mental, emotional and physical bodies.
3. Heart-centred Meditation – the art of being still in the silence; placing our mind processes in our heart; and dwelling in the spaces between our thoughts.
‘“I slept and dreamed that life was Joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was Joy.'
said Rabindranath Tagore.
‘The winds of Grace are blowing all the time. All that is required is that we raise our sails and the winds of Grace will blow us gently home’, said Ramakrishna.