Monday, May 30, 2011

Morning walks are always inspiring. The wind brings us new voices. The faces talk about visions, hopes, and worries. There’s no doubt we are all living through tough times. Everywhere we look there’s something almost catastrophic going on, reason why I try to avoid the daily news. Why adding more stress to an already over stressed world?

Three miles of mindful walking brought me new insights about what we, as a human race, are looking for these days. Two old ladies walking with their dogs told me they wanted to stay in shape because they were curious to see what the future would bring. They were eager to see how humanity would handle the impending transformation. A group of parents with their kids were teaching them how to fish. “They need to learn how to provide for themselves. We are learning how to grow our own food to sustain our family the old way.”

That “old way” took me back to my own old days, when I would wake up early excited about going to the yard to gather fresh eggs and witness the magic and skill of my grandfather milking the cows; fresh milk that I would later help distribute among the relatives and neighbors. That was life, a healthy life where people would gather and share their crops; the dream of living as a big family.

Like the ladies I met, I am also curious to see what the near future would bring. I am hopeful that we will recover that humanity consciousness we have lost over the years. I am confident we will soon be able to create and live our new dream. What would it take for us to dream this dream together and for the benefit of all? How would we redefine our dreams discarding old beliefs?

Martin Luther King Jr. said: “An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity." And there is our starting point to redefining our collective dream. Like in the old times, WE MUST DREAM TOGETHER!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Partnership or Property

Relationships seem to be a hard bone to chew. At times, they could turn into the worst nightmare. There are so many distorted ideas about what relationships should be as leaves on a tree. When cohabitating with someone it is often assumed that a contract has been signed. There is a tendency to look at our relationships like acquired objects we actually buy. Expectations grow. Demands must be fulfilled. We ask for more attention, love, understanding, companionship, support, faithfulness. When those high standards are not met, frustration takes over. We have failed or someone failed us. We blame us and others for what we weren’t able to see from the beginning. A disappointment turn into hatred and love is dumped into the deepest bluff.

Like many other behaviors, the relationships requirements, have been learned as myths passed from generation to generation. These myths are tattooed to our skin. Generally, these intimate connections are also based on experience, ours and others. When my parents divorced I was devastated. I promised myself not to ever repeat such a thing. I did. After an exasperating short marriage, my unconscious mind received the blatant message to never fall into the claws of matrimony again. I haven’t. When life brought me the gift of a fairy tale, I opened my senses to the possibility of shared love again. I’m there now.

This is what I have gathered. In their majority, both men and women would give you the same answer when inquired about their vision on relationships. They all hope for honest communication, commitment, and understanding, a shoulder to rest in times of trouble, and shared values and dreams. Now, when asked what they are bringing to that partnership, they stammer, not very sure about giving the same back. They dream in a stagnant love story where the characters remain the same, no changes at all, forever. This is the kind of dream not bound to come true, one of the causes of unhappiness and break ups. Why? because we all belong to different worlds even if we have been sharing the same bed for a long time. People inevitably change. Their dreams and priorities change as they evolve. Who are we to get in their way in the name of love? Why should love die because of broken expectations? Isn’t that selfish?

Unconditional love sounds simple but it isn’t. There are many definitions but it must be felt to be understood. Unfortunately, this is not the kind of love we are taught even it is referred to in my sacred texts. Remember this?

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails.”- 1Corinthians 13

How many of us live and deliver this kind of love? Instead, we have been programmed to love if we are loved back, if our needs are met, if our checklist passes a perfect review. Unconditional love is not about a mere exchange but about the willingness to love someone no matter what. You still see the faults but continue loving in spite of them. It doesn’t require anything back. It accepts the fact that we all change but love persists. This is one of those lessons that we either learn on our own or life finds the way to confront us with the truths we refuse to see. This was the lesson from my short but meaningful fairy tale.

I have learned that each person we meet serves a purpose. They either come as teachers or pupils. They bring the missing pieces of the puzzle. Some of them stay forever while others make a short stop, deliver their message, and quickly move on.

The message is simple. To love someone does not mean belonging to. Learning to love unconditionally frees us from the drama that consumes; the panic to the “loneliness factor”, the fear of not meeting expectations. Everyone is free to change, grow, and walk their own chosen path, with or without you. Attachment limits our possibilities of growth, the same that we could share if we could only give some room to breathe. This is not to say do whatever and I wait for you at the end of the road. Instead, it means to show respect for our individuality. It means to support each other’s dreams without restrains, to trust.

Paulo Coelho says: “No one loses anyone because no one owns anyone.” This is the core and should be the mantra of every relationship. It is time to reevaluate our relationships. Are you enjoying a sacred relationship or a conditioned business contract?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Yield and Let Go!

Yes. Fear drives most of our feelings, actions, and thoughts. We have stored a wide variety of preconceived ideas, assumptions, and old programs ingrained in our mind. We are afraid of hurt, abuse, not being good enough, or betray, especially from those we love. We wear deep scars hard to forget. As a natural reaction, we build walls all around us, strong fortresses that would keep us safe. So we believe. Truth is that, in keeping resentment, these wounds just grow bigger to the extent of making pain unbearable. Unless we take the first step towards forgiveness, there is no way out, no safe place to go. Old painful memories always walk with us no matter where we go.

Catherine Ponder once said: “When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free.” Now, think about it. Can you feel the ties that still bind you to those who caused you pain?

To fully accept who we are we must first let go of all our past mistakes. This is an indispensable step for growing and evolving to the next level as human beings. We must stop being so radical when it comes to judging our actions. Instead, our faults must be used as feedback to help us improve in this endless subject we call life. I am grateful that I have forgiven myself from any wrong action, feeling, or thought and that now I found the freedom to be the best I can be and deliver it to the world.

Many scorpions will try to crawl to you. It is up to you to fear them and be bitten or to face them consciously knowing that they don’t have the power to harm you. Yield and let go.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sacred Circles-Forgiveness

Crying in pain. Yelling and crying. Crying and wanting to smash that black predator entering my territory, threatening, and biting on me. No mercy. Punish him for your tears.

Those were my thoughts while living the traumatic event of facing my first scorpion, smart animal who managed to crawl up the water pipes. That was the end of a refreshing shower. I was eight.

Wise woman said: “You see my dear, fear has many faces. Have you stopped to think that maybe it was you the one responsible for your own pain? Have you in any way crossed his line? Fear of the unknown makes us react unconsciously. You felt threaten, wanting to get rid of the attacker. You show no compassion. He defends himself in the only way he knows. Always remember, you were granted a wise mind. Use it mindfully in every one of your reactions. Now, is your wise mind able to forgive what fear overlooked?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Power of Us-Celebrating Who You Are

Mother, daughter, sister, wife, teacher, counselor, and nurse…handy women we are. Immerse in all our chores, roles, and responsibilities, how often do we give ourselves the gift of quality time alone? How often do we take the time to pamper the woman within? How many times do we look at our reflection in the mirror, rejoicing and fully accepting that image?

Acceptance is the first step towards transformation. We must accept, love, and embrace who we are, just the way we are. We also need to become aware of our strengths and weaknesses to be able to focus on the positive thus seen our flaws disappear. We need to be devoted to honor our sacred being.

This was the first waking thought when I decided to begin my journey. Paper in hand, I wrote a list of all my good qualities; those aspects that make me so special to my eyes, not the eyes of others. Then I went to the not so good. How were these supposed flaws getting in the way of my fulfillment? The fun part was visualizing how my life would turn around without them. Sometimes we pay too much attention to our flaws instead of focusing on our positive attributes missing the opportunity of improving the former. Moving to our strengths, focusing on them minimize the weaknesses we might perceive.

In my case, I have been known for being stubborn to the core. This behavior has served me very well when pursuing a goal but it hasn’t work in all scenarios. It has also gotten me in trouble. The problem is that determination and stubbornness are not the same. They don’t match. This was the enlighten moment number 1, when awareness jumped in! And, I welcomed awareness into my life.

When we allow awareness to step in, we are given the key of clear vision. Awareness prompts us to face our own true self, giving us the tools we need to learn how to exalt our best. I know there are times when some “inadequate” behaviors and attitudes will try to break out. After all, the world sometimes pounds us with unexpected challenges but, by knowing ourselves and focusing on our best, we are taking control of these behaviors. We are aware of the causes that trigger every challenge and know how to handle it.

By setting time aside to see, accept, love, and fully embrace the whole you, you are moving to your lower body where the power of the feminine resides. Go there now. That is the center that connects you to your creativity and your roots. Breathe it in. From there you are linked to the world. You feel a sense of belonging. From that center, define who you are and clarify your goals. Be concise and real. Align your goals to your best qualities. Pay attention to those areas in need of nurturing.

I wanted to work on my ability to stay centered. I needed to learn how to manage my emotions in the midst of struggle, especially when dealing with situations that didn’t belong to me. It happens that many times we let others drag us into their tribulations. For the sake of love, empathy, or compassion, we end up carrying a heavy foreign load. Acceptance and self awareness clears the path to understanding.

As you begin your own journey, devote a day, two, or whatever time is necessary to enjoy being with yourself. Acknowledge your virtues. Find your power center and reconnect with it, the place where you find your divine essence. Treat yourself to something you like. Honor your inner and outer beauty. Feel how your power grows and travels through your body. Let awareness guide you through a rebirthing process.

Monday, May 9, 2011

And Then Came Hope.....

People do the best they can with what they have. This is a difficult concept to grasp when in the midst of the daily rush we live on; when face with tedious traffic, angry citizens, or a slow, very slow customer service. Today was my day to embrace this concept while already tired and ready to go home I had to just stand there waiting for a very important fax to be sent. In the beginning it was just her and I, and another customer already waiting. How long does it take to fax eight pages? What about multi-tasking skills? Isn’t it what good customer service is all about? Five, ten minutes and deep breathing followed. It was just me there until I heard someone coughing behind me. Time surely runs fast. Lining up, six other customers, looking dangerously nervous and probably asking the same questions. And then came Hope, the sweetest girl I’ve ever seen, with a melodic, calm voice, and a totally disarming smile. And in a few minutes, I felt the miracle of ease spirits, mine included. And then, I remembered: we all do the best we can with what we have. It is precisely tolerance and hope what we are in so much need of. Hope was there to remind me that I was meant to be there, that there are no accidents, and that we are all growing in different ways; doing the best we can with what we have.


Airfares Around The World

Adultery by Paulo Coelho

AdulteryAdultery by Paulo Coelho
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Another great story by Paulo Coehlo. Real life down to earth characters struggling to find the meaning of life; a mirror of what we all go through day by day. The amazing story of Linda makes us ponder and question. What's life's ultimate purpose? What force moves us? What is it that we should all strive for?

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