ROSEMARY’S EXPLORATION: Choose to Celebrate!

You are always at a point of choice about how you will respond to a given situation. The way it works is: an event happens, you have a knee-jerk reaction, and you respond. When you are living a conscious life, you pause after that knee-jerk reaction and CHOOSE how you will respond.

Life happens. Stuff happens to and around and in us. We have natural tendencies to react in a certain way. Your first response might be anger. It might be fear. It might be to blame someone else. It might be to assume that it is your fault. There are lots of ways that you can react to a stimulus.

But you CHOOSE the way you will respond to that stimulus. If you allow your unconscious mind to make the choice, it will choose to operate under the same strategies from which your knee-jerk reaction arose.

However, if you give yourself a chance to pause, you will have many more options for choosing a response.

There are a lot of fear-mongers who would invite you to feel fear. There are a lot of situations in the world that, when focused on, will generate fear. There are, though, a lot MORE situations that invite us to celebrate.

But do we focus on celebrating or on fear?

The chances are very slim that you will ever contract the Eboli virus. And, yet, many people are hysterically afraid of this disease which is, admittedly, not a fun thing to have. It is, however, very difficult to contract this disease. But you are certainly hearing a lot about it, often with an undertone of fear.

Now think about all the things that are going RIGHT with your body, right now, in this moment, as you read these words. You have molecules and atoms and cells and tissues and organs that are all functioning without your conscious mind having to direct the show. Air is going in and out of your lungs without your conscious effort, unless you choose to focus on your breathing.

The last meal you ate is digesting itself without your focus. You can reach for a drink of water without having to consciously fire off every muscle involved in the action. Your eyes and brain are working together to make sense of the images you read on this page.

In other words, there are a whole lot of reasons for you to celebrate your body!

Are you feeling fearful at the moment about something that hasn’t happened yet?

Allow that fear to invite you into celebration of something that IS HAPPENING in this present moment. Get into gratitude for things that are working the way you want them to work. Think about the volunteers around the globe who are selflessly serving others right now.

Think about the Sun rising every single morning without your assistance. The things that you worry about are possibilities that haven’t materialized yet. Even if you have a fear based on something that has already happened, is that fear leading to the resources to make the optimal choice of response or is it constricting your vision so much that you can’t see any other possibilities?

Celebrate! You are reading this. Fear reminds you that you have forgotten to celebrate what’s good, what’s going well. Choose to focus on celebrating and let the fear take a back seat. There’s always something to celebrate, even if it’s just that next breath that you take!

Conscious Relationships Start with Self-Love – Richard’s Commentary

Humans are social beings. It is all about relationships. Last week I wrote about our interdependence with others, what Thich Nhat Hahn calls “interbeing.” We are especially dependent on and interdependent with other humans. Here’s what Rosemary says about that:

Human beings are relationship experts. We are constantly adjusting relationships, in one direction or another. Relationships with significant others, with parents and with children, with co-workers, clients, neighbors, hairdressers, waitstaff at the local restaurant, checker at the grocery store. Every interaction with another human being is an element of a relationship.

And every relationship begins on the inside of ourselves. This is why it is so important to have that relationship in the first place! Do you have a good relationship with yourself?

In her post Rosemary writes about choices we have and we make moment to moment. The first choice is to have that inner relationship. How do you do that? It’s as easy as breathing! And we all need to do that!

The “conscious relationship with self” begins with conscious breathing. That’s right, bring your consciousness to your breathing pattern. Don’t try to change it or make an effort, just bring your attention to how your breath feels; think about the inhale; feel it as it comes in through your nose, down your throat, into your lungs. Where does it go there? Does it fill up your chest? Does it go down into your belly? Just notice. And on the exhale, how does that feel? What happens first? How much air do you exhale?

Shifting just our focus on our breath, with no change at all in rhythm or style, changes our body chemistry and our mental awareness! Imagine what might happen if you actually, consciously begin to control your breathing. Maybe your in-breath goes a bit deeper and is longer; maybe you hold it for just a moment as you sense it, notice the feeling of expansion. Then as you exhale maybe you do this more slowly, deliberately. And maybe you expel more air, even flattening your belly, back towards your spine as you push out more air – to make room for a bigger in-breath.

And you can continue in this manner, watching your breath, taking longer, deeper, slower breaths. This is the beginning of a relationship with yourself, your deeper self.

I’m not writing here to teach meditation. But I am echoing Rosemary’s intention that your best relationship is with yourself, inside. Here’s what she says about you:

Who you are, deep in your core, is a beautiful being of Light. Who you are, inside, is a spark of divine energy. Who you are, in the essence of you, is a person of access to great wisdom and love. THIS is the person that you really want to show up in every relationship, isn’t it?

I would like to have a relationship with this being of Light – you! Wouldn’t you?

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MUSE-INGS: “Greedy Hermit or Compassionate Conscious Being” by Rosemary Bredeson

Well, I, for one, do not want to be a ‘greedy hermit’!

And, yet, sometimes it feels greedy to just want a little time alone when there are so many demands being placed on our time and energy.  How to strike a balance?

The first way to do this is to get in touch with what is going on inside you in this present moment.  Asking yourself how you feel, what’s happening inside with relation to outside, is an important tool to cultivate.  Oftentimes we go through our days on a sort of autopilot that keeps us from being really aware of the energies within and around us.  We plow through our to-do lists, going from one project or activity to another.  How many times have you said to yourself or others, ‘In a minute…’?  Can you find a way to pause and be fully present to this moment NOW?

When we pause and take a breath into this moment we are connecting with our body and our own energy and there is a lot of information available to us through this connection.  When we are aware, we can sense our feelings and the energies of those around us.  The more you practice this skill the greater will be your awareness of these energies.

For example, if you are blithely going through your day and yet a co-worker or spouse or child is struggling with their day, do you take time to notice?  Or are you so wrapped up in your own stuff that you are oblivious to that struggle?  It is not a judgment against you if the answer is ‘yes’ but this could be your wake-up call that sometimes you need to come up for air and, like a submarine’s periscope, scan the horizon for what is going on around you.

Do you participate in conversations or discussions without really listening to what others are saying, verbally and non-verbally?  Maybe you can start checking on yourself every so often to see where your attention has been and bring it back to connecting with those around you.

Watching your language, your tone of voice, making eye contact, your body language – all of these awarenesses can lead you to improving the connections that you have with others.  With more information about what is going on with the other or others, compassion can rise up in your heart and you can offer that energy in response to what is going on.  If you are clueless to what is happening around you, then you cannot connect to compassion.  And you want to.

Compassion is a very high frequency energy that is important to the world today.  The more we can share that energy the more the Planet can benefit.  One compassionate act can also bring others along with it.  The compassionate one can bring awareness to the clueless, can move the ‘greedy hermit’ into consideration of others.  Compassion can be contagious!  Wouldn’t you like to be the Typhoid Mary of Compassion?

Make a commitment to yourself that you are going to spread compassion this week wherever you find yourself.  At a gathering, look around for the person who seems lonely or alone and chat with them.  At home, look at the others in your household and really see them.  Ask questions and stay interested in their answers.  On the street or at the mall, try walking around smiling at people, saying, ‘Excuse me’ if you bump into them, or even if they bump into you.  Ask the server at the restaurant how they are doing and listen to their answer.  Spread compliments [heart-felt, please!] everywhere you go.  If you are looking for something to compliment you will not be focused on finding fault.

Become more aware of others and of what is going on inside you.  Awareness brings consciousness and compassion can spring from that.  See what it feels like to keep yourself in this high frequency energy!

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