Inside and Out

I have been out of whack the last few days, paying more attention to the things going on in my world, than my inner self. But I’m happy to say I’m coming back into balance. After burning myself  out with work, I took some serious ME TIME. I even booked a little get away in New Orleans for November. I realize that when I take care of myself, the outer (stuff in my life) flows. I’m hoping that all of you are taking care, too. Blessings!yinyang

Spiritual Path, Ups and Downs

I have those amazing insights; I feel so close to The Light, and then doubt creeps in. Am I on the path at all? Am I really helping others? How can I when I don’t even feel connected, when I’m in a bad mood? Am I a phony?

My Kabbalah teaching has shown me that this is part of the path. At these times, nothing will satisfy but my connection to The Light. This is when I humbly ask for connection. And this brings me closer to The Light. All comes from the same Source, the down times are part of the Path. This is the time to practice faith.

More Kabbalah

I’ve just started to learn about Kabbalah. I’m approaching this, as I do all spiritual study, with the aim to incorporate the knowledge into my consciousness and daily life, so it’s something that I’m taking very slowly. I’m only sharing the “practical” parts, the parts that we can apply directly to our lives, not all the background, although that is truly wonderful.

Here’s what I feel compelled to share today: According to what I’ve learned, the key to enlightenment is basically, moving out of the egoistic desire for “receiving” to “bestowing”. “Receiving” is the mode most of us operate in most of the time. It’s the perspective of “how can I get what I want”. “Bestowing” is what God does for us; God Energy gives us our very life and everything in it. Operating from “bestowing”, with the energy and intent of “giving” in our hearts, makes us more like God, closer to God, and connects us to all other souls. And it brings blessings down to earth.

I’ve been trying to apply this concept to my life. As I go through my day, whenever I start to get irritated, I realize that what’s behind that is my desire to “receive”. Why doesn’t my husband notice that I’m feeling down and why isn’t he trying to do something to make me happy? How come my friend hasn’t called? When I shift that energy to “bestowing” energy–what can I do for my husband and what can I do for my friend?–my heart feels open and connected and life seems to flow. I am happy!

That’s all I have for today. I look forward to sharing again.

Kabbalah and Tarot–simple lesson

Because the Tarot is said to be influenced by the Kabbalah, I wanted to try to understand it. So I have begun studying. Before now I was intimidated  by this mystical work that seemed so different than anything else I have studied. As I delve in, I have to say that I am in awe and I find myself resonating with the little I have encountered so far. I know very little and am a humble student, but I feel that I can share this one concept: We can make the decision to “bestow” instead of being focussed on “receiving.” By choosing to bestow (give) we become more like the Divine who bestows everything.

This simple concept is worth meditating on. I see it in my own life, choosing to be giving, to be of service over thinking only of what I can receive creates a powerful shift; the ego takes a back seat. The Tarot is here to help us to grow spiritually. I hope to share more about my journey into the Kabbalah as I learn.

Blessings,

Maria

Forgiveness Ritual that Changed my Life

fire-1073217_960_720We all know the effects of holding grudges and bad feelings toward ourselves and others–it weighs us down and holds an icky place in our heart. But how do we let that stuff go? I used to be a big grudge holder. I came to find out that this was the result of my own insecurities, feeling like what other people did to me was about me instead of simply being  about their own human limitation.

To let all this go, I wrote down the name of every person who I felt had wronged me on a little slip of paper. Then I held it over my sink and thanked this person for what the experience had taught me, like how to be stronger or more compassionate. Or how to take the high road, or how to trust my intuition. I found one positive thing. Even if it was just giving me the chance to practice forgiveness. Then I lit that little paper on fire while blessing this person and myself. My anger literally  went up in smoke! Instead of anger I felt love for them and myself. That bundle of  burdens that I had been carrying for so long was released. And my life changed profoundly.

Buddhism in Action–Compassion

Compassion is a big thing in Buddhism and pretty much any other religious or spiritual practice I can think of. How do we put ourselves in the frame of mind to choose compassion over feeling irritated, angry and judgmental toward another person? And how do we choose compassion over disappointment in ourselves?

For me, if I am feeling irritated or angry at someone, it helps to first make friends with the feeling (not push it away), give it a little space, and be kind and gentle to myself. As I take care of myself and this feeling of irritation, I feel my heart open a little and I’m able to soften toward the other person. It’s an opportunity to thank them, really, for giving me the chance to love myself.

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Buddhism in Action–How are you present?

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Being present is a staple of Buddhism. It’s a concept you come across in all the reading and  a lot of lectures and workshops. You know it’s true because you’ve experienced the beauty of being in the present–that clarity and calm and the power. Yes the power! Maybe you were in meditation or watching a sunset. But how the heck do you bring that awareness into your daily life? For me it takes guts. It takes the humility and honesty to put away my anxieties about my life and and accept who I am and what’s happening. And then I can open up to what’s really going on–something a lot bigger than me. Please share how you stay present. I think you can help yourself and others.