Take a moment as you open this book to do a quick exercise. Take a deep breath. Say to yourself, “Peace, be still”. Take another breath and feel the effect of doing this. You have just done a six second meditation; a mindfulness exercise.
If this felt good, if it enlivened you, keep reading. That is what this book is about. Raising your vibration with quick pauses throughout the day intended to shift your consciousness to a higher state.
Why? Doing so results in a better life and a greater sense of well-being if we make it a practice to frequently use mindfulness exercises and incorporate them into our daily lives.
Why? Because our experiences in life are dramatically affected by our state of mind, our state of consciousness, our vibrational frequency (more about this later).
Our thoughts and our state of mind is just about the only thing we have total, complete control over. We don’t have to let our thoughts, feelings, or moods run away with us., and it’s important, therefore, that we take care of that state of mind to raise ourselves up to the level of our best possible Selves, even to our Eternal Selves, as frequently as possible. Quickie meditations are one of the optimal ways to do that.
It has been said many times in many ways, “We can’t control the things that happen to us, but we can control our reactions to them.” I would argue that we can have control both over the things that happen to us and our reactions to them. (I’ll address the issue of our control over things that happen to us at the end of Chapter 2.) The best way to control your reactions to things that happen in your world is to pause a moment, take a deep breath and do a six second meditation intended to interject your desired vibration into your reaction.
From my own personal experience, I use the techniques/tools that are discussed in this book for a variety of purposes:
· To brighten up my morning as I wake up
· To begin my yoga and meditation practices
· To be grateful for the Life that I will experience during my day
· To be thankful for the entire system that produced my breakfast
· To enliven the run Sasha dog and I take every morning
· To interrupt the momentum of a cold that might be making an appearance
· To offer a healing thought to the news I’m watching
· To appreciate the financial resources I have
· To bless my writing
The trick to this way of life is remembering. Remembering to remember to take a moment, a pause, a breath.
A two second breath or a six second meditation to go Within can put me right in touch with my Soul, or Higher Consciousness, with which many of us are not very well acquainted. Yet, I contend, this is where well-being and the spiritual qualities of love, joy, peace, contentment, compassion, healing, abundance (and more) reside—Within.
· In traffic, you can take a deep breath and say “peace, be still” rather than “I hate you, faceless other driver” or “I hate being stuck in traffic” or “I hate my circumstances that puts me in this situation” or “Damn, I’m going to be late” or….. whatever you say that sets up an angry, upset state of mind reaction to your circumstances.
Why not take charge of your own state of mind, your self-talk, and have a peaceful experience in traffic instead of a yucky one. The traffic is the traffic. There’s little you can do about traffic when you are in it but you can control what occupies your attention when you are there--turning on a lovely bit of music, singing to yourself, listening to an uplifting talk from a masterful teacher or your favorite novelist, inhaling a Sacred Breath, or imagining what you would do with this time if you weren’t stuck behind a delivery truck.
· First thing in the morning, before getting out of bed, take a few seconds to take a deep breath and say to yourself, “What a wonderful world. Thank you, Spirit, for Life,”. This will set the tone for your whole day but requires that you take responsibility for your state of mind by being thankful for Life itself; using mind and soul to alter your well-worn patterns.
Being grumpy in the morning isn’t your only option. You may have said to yourself over and over again a thousand times, “I’m not a morning person". But that statement is only true if you say that it is and believe it. With a little bit of effort and awareness you can replace that self-talk and personal vibration with anything you want. How about “First thing in the morning is a sacred time for me and I see the beauty of it”.
Gives your morning a whole different story line. It’s up to you.
This book is about an updated you. Although you are perfect just the way you are, there is a whole other you that this book will explore. An illumined you. An incredible you that you know is inside of you but which many people don’t have much access to.
Unfortunately, most of us have never been exposed to the real meaning of Gautama Siddhartha Buddha’s words, “This (Enlightenment) that I have attained is profound, hard to see and hard to understand, peaceful and sublime, unattainable by mere reasoning, subtle, to be experienced by the wise”.
I wasn’t exposed to Buddha in my formative years in Charlotte, North Carolina. No emphasis was placed, in the Lutheran Church I grew up in, on these words of Jesus words that still ring through the centuries, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you”. I don’t remember a single sermon, in all the years I went to church on Sunday and Wednesday, which addressed this, and his other cornerstone of his message, “I and the Father are One”.
The words of the prophet Mohammed are similar, “Thou art a mortal being, And thou art the Eternal One. Know thyself, through the light of wisdom. Except Thee there exists none“ were unknown to me. He was a pagan, to the extent he was mentioned at all in the Christian world, and unworthy of discussion.
Why? I think because no spiritual leader that I was ever exposed to knew what the words of either of these two meant. Therefore, Jesus’ most important ideas were never mentioned. Instead, in the much of the Christian church world, Jesus is said to be the only Son of God that ever existed and at the extreme, a non-believer in Him has no hope of ever entering heaven. In this latter teaching, heaven’s gates are guarded by a saint and access to the man with a white beard who rules the universe from a throne is available only to those who “confess Jesus as Lord”.
This rather…. gosh what word do I use? This rather…. limited view of what Jesus was about has condemned his followers to a Heaven that is only accessible after they die. The man clearly said, “The Kingdom of God (Heaven), in inside of you”. That means all of us, not just some. This means that all of us have access to Heaven now. Here.
If we come to realize and experiences these things, we will be following Jesus’ example, Buddha’s example, Mohammed’s example, and the example of others of our Master Teachers, who had their own personal experience of this phenomenon. And honoring their memories by following their examples.
So how do we get access to this Kingdom, this Nirvana, this state of Illumination which our Master Teachers have spoken of from their own personal experience?
What do their words mean and how can we get access to the same experience, Higher Consciousness? How can we grow our spiritual Selves as well as improve our daily lives?
That’s what we will explore in this volume, which is relatively short compared to some of my other books. I’ll give you some ideas and tools to journey in that direction of Illumination if you are so inclined. I can’t promise complete Enlightenment, but I can promise that you can have glimpses of it, which you can then choose to pursue in your own way. In addition, you can dramatically improve your sense of well-being and the quality of your life.
Questions to Consider
1. What type of spiritual upbringing did you have? Did it ever mention the availability of Spirit Within?
2. Have you had experiences since then that have caused you to consider this question of Spirit Within?
3. What do you now think about this idea? Do you like it? Would you be interested in exploring it further?