Editor’s note: This article is an excerpt from Living the Principles of Abundance and Prosperity Vol. 1 by John-Roger, DSS with Paul Kaye, DSS. It was first published in 2010.
To have abundance in Soul does not mean having lots of things; it means having access to, and communion with, the essence of all things. Once you are in touch with that, you have all things inside you. You don’t feel any lack. You have fullness and gratitude, and you walk free, knowing that whatever you need will come to you.
-John-Roger, DSS, What’s It Like Being You?
In 2002, I facilitated a Zen of Spirit retreat in Japan, with Steve Beimel as our guide. We had stopped at the house of a master potter, one who was less traditional and more artistically inclined than the others we had seen. I sat on the floor of his living room as he gave us a short talk. On the shelf next to me, my eye caught the most beautiful tea bowl I had ever seen. (The tea bowl is a sacred object to many and is used to whisk matcha, a powdered green tea, usually as part of Chado—the Way of Tea—or, as it is more commonly known in the West, “the tea ceremony.”)
I picked up the bowl and held it adoringly. Every aspect and every angle inspired and moved me. The price of $2,000 was beyond what I could afford, so I decided to sit in silence and take the essence of the tea bowl into me. I thought that, at least, the essence could be mine as an inner reality, even if I didn’t own the bowl physically.
Sitting in silence with the tea bowl, now within me, brought me to a place of fulfillment, quiet, and abundance. Even though I wasn’t going to possess the tea bowl physically, I lacked for nothing and was complete.
From that experience I discovered that I didn’t have to possess a lot of material things, that through attuning to something’s essence, or at least the essence as I perceived it, it would vibrate inside me and I could experience the fullness of having it.
I have learned to do the same thing with nature. I live in a gritty part of urban Los Angeles—lots of concrete—but by recalling the essence of beautiful scenes from nature that I have experienced, I can make nature part of my environment.
There was a wonderful end to the tea bowl story. Unknown to me, the retreat participants pitched in and bought the bowl for me. That afternoon, Steve Beimel and I, along with the two women who had helped with the collection, went to the potter’s home to collect the tea bowl. The potter was not there, but his beautiful wife took us into the living room and, taking the bowl in her hands, explained that the bowl had a soul (they take their tea bowls very seriously!) and that the tea bowl is actually made by two artists. The first artist is the potter. But the most important artist is the owner of the bowl, for how they use and treat it determines what it will become.
So I had the blessing of the physical bowl plus the inner bowl. I still have the tea bowl and enjoy its beauty every day. But the most valuable gift was the lesson I learned that day about the essence of things.
Paul Kaye, DSS, Author and President of MSIA, is facilitating a series of workshops on awakening abundance and how to create more of what you want in your life.
The events are at Peace Awareness Labyrinth & Gardens between January 22nd and June 18th, 2018.