Battlefield or Garden?

“Mindfulness is about love and loving life. When you cultivate this love, it gives you clarity and compassion for life, and your actions happen in accordance with that.” Jon Kabat-Zinn

Before you even get out of bed in the morning do you ever find yourself getting ready to fight in the battlefield? When we’ve been offended, misunderstood, dismissed, unrecognized, we often wake up ready to go out to the battlefield, prepared to fight the enemy. You know them—Boss, coworker, spouse, friend. There’s a need to fight and make things right. There’s a need to be understood, to right the world that is spiraling out of control.

However, if we are disciplined enough to make it over to our meditation chair to sit in the stillness and quiet the mind, to release the busy warrior-to-do list for the day, we can tap into peace.

Imagine what would happen if we put aside the battlefield and instead went out to work in the garden? What if we allowed  the warrior weapons to morph into garden gloves and channeled the emotions of battle into energetic vitality? We could use this newfound passion to nurture and till the soil, feeding the precious seedlings (thoughts) with love, peace, wholeness, harmony. Take time to smell the flowers and take in the beauty of nature’s bounty.

If we are willing to lay down our weapons, the challenges of the world can be transformed by the presence of love. It takes mindful intention and a willingness to let go. Buddha reminds us that “Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts.”

Practicing mindfulness can give us the resources to face the difficulty of the day. It can help us find words to heal, thoughts to soothe, acts of kindness to share.

Affirmation: I am willing to lay down thoughts of separation and practice the radiant oneness of love.

Aware, Awake and Enthusiastic

“There is a Divine spark at the center of your being. But you need to recognize this, believe it and act upon your belief.” Ernest Holmes, Thoughts are Things

Have you ever found yourself arriving home but don’t remember driving there? Some days we can be so lost in thought that we drive on autopilot, failing to notice the world around us.

When we practice mindfulness or awareness, we are paying attention. How am I feeling in my body? Where do I notice tension? What emotions am I feeling?

Once I am aware, I notice the tension and the tightness in my body. I feel the feelings. I am awake to something more than my physical body and senses.

There’s a subtle shift that happens in the mind when we go from taking life for granted to being in awe of how the world works and how the universe functions. I am awakened to being part of something greater. I am awake to my connection with Spirit.

When we manage to stay in that awakened state, the world seems magical. We noticed the colors, the sounds, the intricacies of a flower, the beauty of nature, the joy of laughter. We live in appreciation and gratitude.

When we live in awareness we live in amazement and we are open to unlimited possibilities. Activist and spiritual teacher, Barbara Holmes says, “When we are fully alert in Spirit, mind and body, we are more than we imagine and can accomplish more than we suppose.”

When we are awake we live in a state of wonder, amazement, and we are seeing through the eyes of our soul. We are seeing through the eyes of love. We know something wonderful is bound to happen.

Affirmation: Today I am aware, awake and enthusiastic.