The Importance of Meditation

In Silence, the people of the Followers of the Inner Light, found answers to the deepest questions of their hearts.  Meditation is simply described as a serious act of contemplation, although entire books have been written to define it.  Meditation has been practiced since before recorded history and all culturally intact indigenous people use some form of meditation or another.

Through the vehicle of silence, by looking inward, chanting, studying dreams, using mantras and many other meditative techniques a secret doorway opens.  This door connects you to the divine, to the creator, to the source that connects all that is.  Who wouldn’t want to find that door?

The practice of meditation underlies many spiritual practices and traditions.  There is great value in meditation among all religions and spiritual groups of people.  It holds great value for you too.  Learning to meditate and doing it well can and will change your life, for the better.  Imagine the answers to the greatest mysteries of life, as well as solutions to your own problems being revealed to you.

Different cultures have different ways of meditating.  They are all important and useful to your own life because they all work.  You may find great achievement through some methods, more than others and that is why understanding these techniques is so important.  One meditative practice used by the Shamans was drumming.  The Indian culture embraces many forms of yoga, as one way to open the door to the divine and the popular Christian form of meditation is through prayer.  You see, there are many ways to meditate.  Chances are you already incorporate meditation into your life somehow.  The real question is not if you do meditate, but rather how well you meditate?  Life will blossom in ways you did not even know possible.  When we remember the self, who we really are … we wake up.

Many contemporary meditative practices have been established and created, most are modern revisions of traditional forms of meditation.  When studying various traditional and contemporary meditation forms, it is easy to find the ones you resonate with best.  I personally love the teaching of the Vietnamese Buddhist monk, Thich Nhat Hanh.  He teaches mindfulness meditation, a form of insight meditation that can be done while walking or any other activity of life.  The focus of walking while practicing mindfulness meditation is to be fully present in the moment.  Smell the air, feel the breeze, listen to the sounds around you … this is mindfulness.  The Catholic church had there own ancient form of walking meditation known as the labyrinth.  Yes, the labyrinth began in the Catholic church.  A labyrinth is most often a circular Mandala type of pattern with a walking path through to the center, with only one way in and one way out.  There is great symbolism here, as the path is said to be much like that of life.  We choose a path, follow it and accept what comes.

Meditation is an important part of spiritual development, personal power and self awareness.  It has the humble ability to help you in all areas of your life.

Sources

UMS Meditation Skills (with meditations) Course

This course is part of the Bachelor’s program at UMS.  All UMS courses and meditations can be purchased individually.  Visit University of Metaphysical Sciences for more information.

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A Course In Miracles: Can It Help You In Your Life?

It is likely that you have either heard of A Course In Miracles (ACIM) or are already familiar with the teachings.  Many luminaries of our time, motivational speakers, metaphysicians, new agers and spiritual leaders refer to ACIM often in their teachings, books and speeches.  A Course In Miracles has been translated in several languages and has sold over one and a half million copies.  The popularity of the Course continues to grow.  Their are currently over 2,200 study groups that now meet worldwide on a regular basis.  No one has the rights to the material in ACIM because the authors claimed that the writer of the text was divine, therefore anyone is free to quote the material just like other religious texts such as the Bible.

A Course In Miracles (ACIM) is the result of the collaboration between two Columbia University psychologists, Dr. William T. Thetford and Dr. Helen Schucman. In 1965, Helen experienced what she described as a Voice which spoke clearly in her mind, saying “This is a course in miracles. Please take notes.”  The two continued over a period of seven years to document and assemble the information that came to Helen from the voice, whose name was given as Jesus.  The three-volume set was published in 1975 through the Foundation for Inner Peace.

A Course In Miracles (ACIM) is a self-study, spiritual thought system.  Although it uses traditional Christian terms and language, the focus of ACIM is on universal spiritual teachings. ACIM expresses a non-sectarian, non-denominational spirituality and is not a religion. A three-volume curriculum consisting of a Text, Workbook for Students, and a Manual for Teachers, the student has several ways available to study the material.

The Course teaches the way to universal love and peace, owning our feelings and thoughts, releasing others from blame, remembering God and undoing guilt through forgiving others. The basis for fear and guilt are explained, as well as how they can be overcome through miracles.  Miracles are defined as a maximal expression of love. The miracle is a shift in perception from fear to love.

The summary introduction, which appears in ACIM reads:

“This is a course in miracles. It is a required course. Only the time you take it is voluntary. Free will does not mean that you can establish the curriculum. It means only that you can elect what you want to take at a given time. The course does not aim at teaching the meaning of love, for that is beyond what can be taught. It does aim, however, at removing the blocks to the awareness of love’s presence, which is your natural inheritance. The opposite of love is fear, but what is all-encompassing can have no opposite.”

This Course can therefore be summed up very simply in this way:

Nothing real can be threatened.
Nothing unreal exists.

Herein lies the peace of God.”

The Course is aimed to create spiritual transformation within an individual.  Many people have found great peace and self-acceptance through studying the Course, with profound spiritual experiences.  The Course is well-known in many spiritual circles around the world.  ACIM helps people make better sense of life and live in a greater state of balance and peace.  You may find it helpful to you as well.  ACIM is divided into lessons.  It is recommended that you do no more than one lesson per day.  Try it out for a week or a month.  There is no better way to see if ACIM is right for you then by trying it out for yourself.

May your life be filled with happiness and spiritual wealth!

Unconditional Love: Loving Without Condition

A student of life, there have been several times when I have wondered to myself, “How did I do that?”, notably some of the times that my heart chakra opened and I could feel its effects on my surrounding.  I searched for the answers to my awakened heart experiences for quite some time and although gained a lot of wisdom, I still felt unsure how I could repeat the experience.  When I felt the warm sensation of my heart opening, others could feel it too!!!  I read book after book, many that were very helpful to my spiritual development and growth, yet I remained puzzled about the key to unlocking my own heart.  One of my teachers had asked me how I knew it wasn’t opened already, which made me realize that it probably was.  Although I was not in a state to feel my open heart consistently, this did not mean that it was not open.  I still searched for a way to feel the love pouring from me at will, for an answer to how I opened it spontaneously so many times before.  My many experiences were the best tool that I had toward repeating them at will and one day, while in a state of meditation, the truth was revealed to me.  It was an “ah-hah moment”, as I realized that it is so simple …

The secret, the answer to my heart opening experiences is through unconditional love.  Unconditional love is true love, pure love … and it is potent, healing, intense and feels amazing.  Unconditional love creates spiritual union.  It raises your vibration and increases the flow of positive energy into your life.  Unconditional love is lucky …

Unconditional love makes you feel whole, happy and complete, with a rich inner garden that seeds many potentials.  Unconditional love is freeing, as it releases us from the restrictions and limitations we put on others and on ourselves.  Loving unconditionally is easier than conditional love.  With a little practice, releasing the joys and blessings of pure love into your life and into your heart is easy.

To begin to practice loving in a pure, unconditional way let’s first take a look at what conditional love is.  Conditional love is loving with conditions, with limitations.  Conditional love is like paying for love.  If you act a certain way, you will get love.  If you do not act a certain way,  love is omitted.  This is the way many people love, especially of themselves.

Unconditional love is love without limits.  It is having love for someone, no matter what that person does, says or is.  When unconditional love is present their are no judgments and forgiveness comes easily.  Unconditional love is giving love without expectation, with total acceptance of the way the person is.  Unconditional love is loving someone as they truly are.  Pure unconditional love feels wonderful, as it resonates with the universe, creating a spiritual union.  Unconditional love is natural!  It is something we are born with.

Having unconditional love for yourself is important to spiritual growth and development.  Actually in order to love another in a balanced and wholesome way, you must first love yourself.  Act in ways that reflect self-love and forgive yourself for making mistakes.  Loving yourself no matter what is what pure, unconditional love is all about.  Unconditional love is continuing to feel love, without interruption, without excuse, without reason to cut the ties of love.  Pure love gains momentum, as there are no excuses to stop the flow.

Unconditional love can be very difficult at times, yet it is extremely rewarding.  When you love without strings attached, you open yourself up to so many blessings, including deep understanding of yourself and others.

For myself, unconditional love has given me a feeling of freedom.  Keeping up with all the mistakes of myself and others can be very draining and energy consuming.  Although I certainly do not condone certain behavior, it is easy for me to forgive it.   Forgiveness allows me the freedom of letting go of the resistance to being in the flow of love.  It is so much easier to feel love when not holding on to the burdening resentments of the past.  After all, to err is human and certainly we have all learned some of the most important lessons at one time or another through a mistake.  Letting things go has uplifted me beyond measure … helping me to remove the barriers to opening my heart.  Having pure love and filling my heart with unconditional love is a wonderful feeling, a vibrational match to all my heartfelt desires.  It is a gift I have given to myself.  Try it out for a week and see the difference it can make in your life.

Affirmations: The Power of The Word

An affirmation is the assertion that something exists or is true. Every word you think and every word say is an affirmation.  You can use affirmations to change your life in a positive way by consciously choosing words that create good in your life.  An affirmation opens the door to change.  It is possible to reprogram the mind in a such a way that you attract all sorts of good to you by using affirmations.  Successfully affirming good into your life can be easy.  In order for your affirmations to manifest there are few tips that will keep you open to receiving what it is that you would like welcome into your life.  So let’s get started.

*It is a good idea to have a notebook handy for affirmation work, preferably a new one devoted to your affirmations.  Even if you never use it, other than simply recording your affirmative statements, a notebook serves as a reminder of the thoughts and words you are introducing into your consciousness.

What you choose to think is what you will get in life.  An affirmation is a declaration that something is true.  Affirmative statements go beyond the reality of the present into the creation of the future by the words you use in the now.  Affirmations are planting seeds for future prosperity.  The more you repeat the affirmation, the better the chances of successful manifestation.

Our thoughts and words are like seeds in the mind.  A happy atmosphere within your mind will create a fertile environment, with rich soil that will create beautiful results.  That is the key to bringing your positive affirmations into reality … the right environment for them to grow.

Many people do not find affirmations helpful, but the truth is that they must bring about positive change if they are done correctly.  Here are a few guidelines to follow to find success in using affirmations.

  • Always say affirmations in the present tense.
  • Write, speak or think your affirmations everyday until you see results.
  • If you do your affirmations before bedtime they will swim around within your mind all night long.
  • It is easier to think positive affirmations when you feel good, so create a joyful inner environment with lots of gratitude.
  • Every thought you think and every word you speak is creating your future.  If you say your affirmations, yet live in a state of contradiction, don’t expect much.  In fact, things may get worse.  Pay attention to the words you use everyday, both with your inner voice and your outer voice.  Choose positive affirming words all day, everyday … as much as possible.  You must change the way you speak and think in order for affirmations to work.
  • Every complaint is an affirmation of something you do not want.  It is important to turn negative affirmations around into positive affirmations.
  • Too many negative thoughts create blocks of resistance that slow down positive affirmations or inhibit them completely.  Thoughts of bitterness, blame, guilt and resentment need to be let go of in order to achieve maximum results from your positive affirmations.
  • If you do not feel you deserve the manifestation of the affirmation, you will create a barrier to bringing your positive affirmation into fruition.  Your beliefs affect your life.

Every moment you have a choice as to what you will think about.  Our thoughts create our experience in life.  It is important to remember that every thought you think and every word you speak is an affirmation, so you want them to be as conducive to as great a life as possible.  It is very important to pay attention to the words you use every day, and the way you feel when saying them, for we become programmed by them.  Saying affirmations is only part of the formula … what we do for the rest of the day and night is even more important.  The secret to having your affirmations work well is to create a nurturing and loving inner environment,  conducive to their growth.

Positive affirmations and positive thinking techniques can help develop a powerful and positive attitude in life, which is an essential element in life success and good health. You can use affirmations to change your life in a positive way.   Here are a few affirmations to get your started, although once you get some practice you will be able to write your own.

  • I am open and receptive to all the good and abundance in the Universe.
  • Right now, I accept the abundance that is flowing into my life.
  • I trust my intuition to lead me to abundance.
  • Changing careers is easy and joyous.
  • My intuition clearly guides me to my new career.
  • Each morning I wake up energized and excited for my day because I am passionate about my work.
  • I am supported in my pursuit of prosperity.
  • I am willing to recognize the opportunity to change careers.
  • I am guided to an abundance of joy.
  • I lovingly do everything I can to assist my body in maintaining perfect health.
  • My new work environment is fun and supportive. I enjoy each day there.
  • I leap knowing that there is nowhere to fall to. I trust in the universe.
  • My life is filled with delight, joy, love, and good humor.
  • I only attract loving people in my world for they are a mirror of what I am.
  • Today is a delightful day. Money comes to me in expected and unexpected ways.
  • I choose to express a confident attitude to others.
  • I already have the experience and understanding I need to perform my absolute best.
  • When I believe in myself, others believe in me to.
  • All my relationships are loving and harmonious.
  • I trust in the process of life.
  • My life is a joy filled with love, fun and friendships.
  • I choose to allow love, joy and freedom into my life.
  • I open my heart and allow wonderful things to flow into my life.

For more affirmations, please visit The University of Metaphysical Sciences.

Enjoy your life!  The universe wants you to be happy.

Communication Skills – A Key To Peace

When an individual improves their self they contribute to the well-being of the totality of the whole.  The improvement of skills that allow one to communicate well is integral to the healing of our planet, especially in these fragmented and complex times.  Communication skills can improve the world we all live in.  They are important for the survival of an individual as well as the evolutionary progress of our planet.  The lightworkers among us know of the significance of being able to communicate, articulate and understand the language of the needs shared by all humanity on both a spiritual and practical level, as this skill greatly serves humanity.

Most people do not know how to express their needs to others, nor do they know how to interpret other peoples’ needs.  One of my favorite methods of learning how to communicate, even among great conflict, is known as Nonviolent Communication, or NVC for short.  Developed by clinical psychologist, Dr. Rosenburg, NVC is a system for getting in touch with the basic needs of ourselves and those around us.  Dr. Rosenberg has been teaching this system of communication across the globe for over thirty years.  He lives what he teaches, the mark of a true healer, teacher and sage.

Nonviolent Communication is a way of being, thinking, and living in the world.  According to NVC, when we recognize the needs (a common bond of humanity) of ourselves and those around us, strategies can then be discussed to meet the needs of everyone involved.  NVC teaches a literacy of needs, something most people do not have.  This technique has tremendously successful results when applied in conflict resolution, as well as increasing intimacy between individuals.  When we make the choice to help someone with something that they need it feels good to contribute to the well-being of another.  The gift of giving comes from the heart to heart connection between individuals.  A true bond forms this way and everyone gets their needs met, therefore everyone is satisfied with the results.

Identifying our core needs and developing a strategy to get them met, as well as helping others to meet their needs is the main focus of NVC.  NVC teaches ways to express ourselves while accepting the risk of vulnerability and formulating requests in ways that work toward resolution.  This method allows an individual to be more in touch with their authenticity and what is alive within them.  The language that is taught fosters compassionate and empathetic connection between people.  Although the system is simple, it takes great patience and desire to put it into practice.  With a little initial effort the use of NVC is tremendously rewarding.  It has great use in conflict resolution, especially when all others methods have failed.  As they say in A Course In Miracles, “When we empathize, their is nothing to forgive”.

By contributing to the peace between individuals, whether you are the mediator or communicating for yourself, you help to contribute to the peace of the planet.  The global community of unity is emerging and there is a sense of being less separate from one another.  While our own personal uniqueness gives us each an individual mark on society, as well as our own personal mission and role, the human commonality between us all helps us to communicate and share with one another.  If we bring our knowledge and awareness of understanding and cooperation to our immediate spheres of influence, the ripples of transformation and healing will reach great distances.  One person can have a great effect on many.  Learning to communicate and understand the core of what others are saying is a skill that has the power to touch your heart and your life, as well as those around you.  Be the change!

For more information on communication skills, please visit the University of Metaphysical Sciences.

Meditation Can Change The World

Are you familiar with the healing powers of meditation?  Did you know that mediation can change the world?  That it contributes to the peace of entire nations?  Did you know that meditating is not only good for your own stress levels, but it also contributes to the reduction of stress and stress-related illness for your neighbors to?  Do you do your part to help yourself and help the consciousness of the masses?  

There are numerous benefits of meditation, including dramatic stress reduction.  When you meditate you clear away the information overload that builds up and contributes to  stress.  Stress is a natural part  of human life, but today we are experiencing pandemic levels of stress, stress-related mental illness and lifestyle diseases that are abnormal by historical standards.  Meditation is known to dramatically help reverse the negative effects of stress on the body and mind.

Meditation can give a deep sense of calm, peace and balance that benefits both your emotional well-being and overall health.  There is a growing body of scientific evidence being released by the world’s leading universities demonstrating how meditation produces a large range of positive outcomes.  These include normalized blood pressure and heart rate, empathy, heightened immunity, sharpened memory, increased energy levels and creativity, chronic pain relief, overall increase in well-being and happiness, increased brain function, better decision making capabilities, decreased stress, decreased depression and anxiety and faster recovery from stressful events, to name a few.  The emotional benefits of mediation include a reduction of negative emotions, mindfulness, optimism, increased self-awareness and an overall peace within the self.

Meditation

Meditation (Photo credit: holisticgeek)

Meditation is not only good for the individual who practices, but for the mass consciousness as well.  This is a new concept for many.  There have been numerous studies that have shown that a large group of people meditating together have a measurable effect on the greater population.  You can be a part of a great movement for peace and never leave the comfort of your home.  If we all come together and focus, and every individual does their part to affect the mass consciousness of humanity, we can change the world.  We can bring about peace through peace, rather than peace through war.

Meditating together also lets us come together in a shared intention for change.  On a global scale, we have witnessed many times how a small handful of people, strongly unified by a common intent, can profoundly influence a larger group of people.  Great global movements for peace begin with the unity of people who desire peace for the greater good.  If the number of people who meditate peace are large enough, this can neutralize negativity, neutralizing stress of the masses (even those who are not meditating) and lower crime and the desire for war.  A group of individuals can have a marked influence on the calming influence throughout society.

I see meditation as a divine gift, a way that we can contribute and give to our world.

Brain structures involved in dealing with fear...

Brain structures involved in dealing with fear and stress. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to the world-renowned quantum physicist, public policy expert and leading proponent of peace, Dr. John Hagelin, stress has a significant effect on the brain and group meditation is a brain-based approach to peace.  He says that the epidemic of stress that contributes to so many health problems, including stress-related illness such as hypertension, heart disease and stroke,  can be reduced through meditation.  Dr. Hagelin explains that anti-social behavior and aggressive-impulsive criminal behavior are stress driven behaviors, born of stress.  Stress has a negative effect on brain functioning and under stress the prefrontal cortex shuts down.  Dr. Hagelin goes on to say that when the prefrontal cortex (otherwise known as the higher brain, responsible for higher human functioning, such as moral reasoning and judgments) shuts down, under stress, we are driven by the primitive, impulsive brain.  At this point we then lose control and lose the ability to consider the implications of our actions.  You could see how this would be problematic.  A simple tool to reverse the negative effects of stress on brain functioning is meditation.  The amazing part about this is that you not only effect yourself when you meditate, you effect others, contributing to the mass consciousness of the planet.

So please, do your part and together we can change the world.  To learn more, please visit the University of Metaphysical SciencesFree downloads are available.

Conscious Manifestation

If you could consciously create all that you desire, would you?  What would you create?  A great relationship, happiness, prosperity, travel … Go ahead, give it some good thought.  What do you want to manifest in your life?  Do you have what it takes to make your dreams come true?

gratitude

gratitude (Photo credit: nathalie booth)

It is possible to transform each day into the gateway that leads to an exceptional and abundant life.  You can choose the future that you want to experience and then set into motion the vibrational energy to create and attract it.   You can consciously create all that you desire.  You see, this is possible because the Universe, both what we see and what we do not, consists of an enormous web of energy and we are a part of this energy.  We are beings of vibrational energy that interact with this web of energy.  Our energy is so strong, so powerful that it goes forth and changes the fabric of the future.  Wow, right?  Every act and thought contributes to creating a happy, prosperous, healthy and rewarding existence.

If you are ready to live more consciously and let go of living in an unconditional way, manifesting the same repeatable patterns into your life over and over again, than you must first realize that you have a choice.  Without realizing it, we draw experiences and people to us unconsciously, and interact with them in programmed ways.  It is possible however to do this in a more conscious way, drawing to you people, situations, things, opportunities and experiences that you need in order to manifest your desires.

You can manifest good things in your life by consciously paying attention to your thoughts and emotions, which are extensions of you.  Your own thinking effects your life, the life of those around you and the entire fabric of the Universe.  You can manifest an exception life by affirming what you want to have happen and trust in life to bring it to you.  Life loves you and wants you to be happy.  Solutions will come into your life that you never dreamed of.  What a lovely thought!

Gratitude changes everything

Gratitude changes everything (Photo credit: symphony of love)

Conscious creation is all about drawing to you what you need in order to receive what you want.  So get out a pen and paper and begin to really answer the question, “What do you really want in life if your only option was success?”.  Let your heart guide you.  Once you have a clear picture of your desires, then let go … have faith and begin working toward accomplishing some small goals in your life that are a part of the larger goals.  Action married with intention, along with the web of the universe is extremely powerful, so be prepared for opportunities to unfold quickly.  Develop the art of loving things as they are now.  When you notice something you want to change, you must first love and accept it just as it is. Only love is big enough to embrace all the seeming mistakes of the past and the bumps along the way to manifesting all your heart’s desires.  Stay tuned into the frequency you wish to receive from.  The more joy you feel, the more joy will come your way.  Do things that bring you happiness and stay connected to your heart through gratitude.

Gratitude is the single most important ingredi...

Gratitude is the single most important ingredient to living a successful and fulfilled life (Photo credit: symphony of love)

Here are some techniques and tips toward successful conscious manifestation.

  • Have gratitude for your life and understand that unconscious manifestation thrives on complaining.  So if you want to stop all unconscious manifestation in your life, stop complaining. We keep our childhood programming in place by complaining as though we are victims and life is just happening to us.  Old patterns will drop away effortlessly when you stop complaining.
  • When happiness comes knocking, go ahead and answer it.  Let the happiness in when it comes your way.  By making the choice to be happy as much as possible, no matter what life throws at you, before you know it, your high vibration will create even more joy in your life.  It will literally be drawn toward you.
  • Do not dwell on problems, rather focus on the solution.
  • If a negative thought, person, experience, etc. starts to bring you down, you can break the spell … you don’t have to go with those negative feelings.  You do not have to ride the wave.  Simply make the choice to feel happy and good.  You are the creator of your experience.
  • Forgiveness is something you do for yourself to release yourself from the prison of holding on.  It does not mean that you condone behavior however, so just let it go.
  • How you start your day is important, so start it well.
  • Start a gratitude journal.  Write in it every night before bed.
  • Make an affirmation bowl and place it on the table.  Choose a positive affirmation from the bowl each day at put it on the refrigerator.  Better yet, let the children pick out the affirmations for the day.  Children love affirmations.  Get them doing them early.

Have Fun!