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Posts Tagged ‘practices’

Each day comes bearing its own gifts. Untie the ribbons.
– Ruth Ann Schabacker

There are always plenty of reasons not to write. I have had lots lately. At least, I’ve had plenty of reasons not to post to the blog, though I remain faithful to my morning pages, which I’ve done for nearly 20 years. (Don’t even try to fathom the number of journals that has filled.)

The surface reasons are things like: not feeling well, lacking the inspiration, too many insights coming through so fast that picking one to write about is difficult, beautiful weather beckoning me outdoors, drawers and cabinets to clean out and organize, get-togethers with friends, client calls, brainstorming and mind-mapping my new offerings and directions, physical therapy sessions (for a frozen shoulder)  interrupting my creative time.

Subterranean reasons are, well they are subterranean, so I am not all that aware of them. My guess about the subterranean reason is that I’m in a period of rapid change and what used to satisfy me as a post, is shifting.

What is it I want to say now? What wants to be shared from this place, this raw, smack-dab-in-the-middle-of-it terrain?

I guess we’ll find out over the next few months.  Meanwhile, I know some people have been waiting for my next post, because they’ve written to me or told me face to face that they are wondering why I’ve not posted lately. Thank you faithful readers! I count you among my blessings.

Speaking of which, I want to share with you one of the practices that spontaneously burst out of me one morning during a few days of peak discomfort. It brought me relief and heartened me.

I was making breakfast and was so tired of feeling crumby, that I made the decision to shift my attention to what is working in my experience from a whole body, mind, spirit, heart perspective as well as from each aspect. I found the first and began saying out loud:

Thank you for the blessing of: (fill in the blank with a blessing of  simple things like):

Thank you for the blessing of another day.

Thank you for the blessing of full breaths.

Thank you for the blessing of the smell of coffee.

Thank you for the blessing of the pink clouds at sunrise.

 

Sunrise Pink Skies copyright(c) JAN 2011, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved

Thank you for the blessing of a wonderful new client.

Thank you for the blessing of friends and family who care.

Thank you for the blessing of a heater that works and warms my house.

(Pretty soon I was dancing around the tile kitchen floor in my socks, whirling like a 7 year old ballerina)

Thank you for the blessing of these feet and legs that walk and dance.

The inner wretched one (aka party-pooper) wants to say things like “yeah, but…” and “what if …?” Thankfully, it gets drowned out pretty quickly as I persist in finding the blessings and the heart begins to radiate and fill my mind, body and spirit with brilliant light and happiness. (Hint: It helps to begin with a smile, even if it is simply a physical turning upward of the lips.)

It’s all really simple isn’t it? Simple and complex; like breathing.

We are living through some tough times. A courageous heart is one filled with radiant love and light. We can’t go to the well often enough to drink of beauty and raise our vibration.

As with any ritual, it is easier to remember to actually do it if we practice regularly. So, I’ve begun what I call the Ten Blessings Breakfast. However, lately it’s become, Ten Blessings Wakeup, since I have fallen into an awareness that has me look for the blessings immediately upon awakening.

I also have added it to my evening ritual – Ten Blessings Bedtime.

I’ve had occasion to play with it as Ten Blessings Bruhaha. This one I use whenever something comes up that throws me into anxiety or fear; generally conflict in my body, my life or in the world. Recognizing and saying ten blessings in such moments soothes me and brings me present. Most of what I fear is a projection of what might happen (and likely won’t). Most of what causes me grief is past. When I look at this very now moment, I see that right here, right now, there is much to enjoy, embrace and savor.

Why ten? Intuitively, it struck me as a good number. It was something I had to reach for so I would not just stop at a few. In certain studies it is also the number where completion and beginning meet: 1 and 0.

The ten blessings practice opened the way for some amazing insights regarding pain, fear, wholeness and separateness and I plan to share these with you in coming posts.

For now, I’m headed out for an unlimited blessings walk.

Copyright© February 2011, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved

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I love New Years Day.

As much as I also love Winter Solstice, it falls too close to the holidays and gets trampled beneath the feet of travel and shopping, for me to completely find rest and peace on that day. But New Years Day falls after all the craziness and I get to be home, me alone, without obligation or interruption of any sort, wandering through the day in any way I choose.

My Winter Solstice ritual is fairly simple. My New Years activities are greater in number.

I begin by spending New Year’s Eve in the way that most suits what my body, mind, spirit and heart ask of me. This year, I had a cold and I decided to, speak with one of my best friends, watch a movie, participate in an East Coast 15 minute meditation with Ping Li for the new year by teleconference (which means I get to do it at 9pm) and then take a bath listening to Hawaiian slack key guitar music.

I decided to get a jump on my New Years divination activities by completing the evening with a Flying Bird spread using Osho Zen Tarot cards. Doing divination is a way for me to co-create with the Divine. So I call it Divine-ing.  I’ve done this for the past few years and last year’s spread spoke to me all year long in the most profound ways, so I wanted to see what might happen this year.

As I lay out the spread, I became disconcerted. I was tired and the quick interpretation I did of it made little sense to me. I decided to sleep on it.

This morning, I reviewed the spread referring to the expanded version of Osho’s book as well as using Pamela Eakins’ Tarot of the Spirit book. I was thrilled with what the cards portend. The cards fell as a continuation of last year’s spread and gave me a peek into an adventurous 2011.

After that, I began my other favorite divinations: pulling a Healing with the Angels card, two Spirit Cards (I AM and I WILL) and sitting in meditation. Near the beginning of my sitting, I heard a hummingbird, but there was none by the window and the sound came from my altar which houses my crystals and animal totems. It dawned on me that I might pull an Animal Medicine Card as the animal guide for the year and then randomly open to a page in the Crystal Bible to find a crystal guide for the year. Not surprisingly, yet delightfully, the two were well connected in essence.

I tell you about the practice without revealing the actual cards, because my meditation practices are for the most part private, unless I choose to reveal them for teachings (as I did in Movin’ On (take 3) Un-boxed and Settling In) I enjoy giving you some ideas for what you might do with divination for the new year. This is a practice aside from vision boards, vision stories, setting goals and choosing words for the year.

Speaking of choosing words, I noticed that a number of my Facebook friends were choosing their words for 2011. Choosing. Great coaching word. At first, I resisted, and then I thought, I will randomly pick a word from the dictionary and see what comes up, for fun.

Floating sculpture in Paris Fountain copyright (c) Sept 2006, Kathy J Loh

Intuition

You see, I love the random choices. That’s why I do divination. If I choose something, there’s a good chance I will choose from my mind. I will choose something I think should be the word, symbol, focus. I do plenty of that with my business and goal setting. What I want is an infusion from my intuition and I use the divination methods as a way to pop my thinking outside of its well-worn grooves. Sometimes, the cards make no sense, at least not to my logical mind and certainly not to my ego’s goals. The ego’s sense of timing is completely different from the soul, for the most part. Divination or randomness has a way of teaching me, through gradual unfolding of understanding, how these cards, these symbols, play out in my life over the year.

Making sense out of chaos requires creative thinking and maybe the process begins with making chaos out of sense. I take the cards seriously and not seriously at all.

The divination from 2010 revealed treasures that sparkled for me, that reflected a me I could not see at first.  They pulled me back time and again to a spacious way of being with myself and circumstances.

2010’s Flying Bird spread unfolded miraculously. I kept it on the wall in my mediation room and referred to it from time to time. I could see how all cards were dynamically active all year long and at the same time guiding me down my evolutionary pathway.

My angel cards from last year, Divine Timing and Manifestation, were a constant reminder to be patient whenever I got upset with the timing of things.

Anyway – back to the word. I pulled a dictionary off the shelf and flipped back and forth until the moment felt right and I stabbed a page with my finger, but the page I struck was blank. I thought the pages had flipped, but they hadn’t.

I decided to try it again with a thesaurus as if a different book might be the key. My finger landed in between entries, pointing to a completely blank spot.

“OK” I said to no one in particular and someone watching over me. “I guess you don’t want me to have a word.”  (I knew there were plenty of other interpretations, but I chose to be disinterested.)

I headed upstairs to unpack from my trip and create a laundry pile. There on the floor, previously unnoticed was a Spirit Card that said:

Passion

I laughed, just as I had squealed with delight when I pulled some of my other cards today. I like the way the Mystery plays with me.

That’s my word for 2011. Passion.  If you knew the other cards I pulled, you’d know there could not be a more suitable word.  There is plenty to explore when contemplating passion. There is so much more for me to know about this word and all it symbolizes, not to mention so much to embody.

So there you have it. I’ve revealed my word. The rest will remain a mystery for now.

I’m heading off to play with structures:

  • What are the structures and practices, what is the scaffolding that will support dancing in the Mystery?
  • What is the framework that will bend and flex with me as I explore the frontier of my own thinking?
  • What is the calendar of the heart, the timepiece of the soul?

I’ll be writing about this over the coming months.

I’m deeply grateful for each and every one of you dear readers. Your comments and email notes mean a lot to me and I love our connection.

Thank you Thank you Thank you!

Coming up: my first ever “predictions” post. Stay tuned!

words and images copyright (c) January 2011, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved

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