Are you Focusing on the Blessings?
by John Morton
What is your attitude towards your spiritual progress? Maybe there’s an opportunity here to improve it. If something is working for you regardless of what that applies to, unless it stops working, it’s a good idea to keep that up. So look at what are you doing. Do you need assistance of some sort? Sometimes that involves others. Sometimes it involves what you are doing and also what you are not doing. That could work both ways.
We all know pain and suffering. Suffering is an experience that’s more of “In the eye of the beholder.” Pain is more or less universal. We all know what pain is because it hurts. I relate to pain as a messenger. So in a way, pain is innocent. It’s just doing its job. Pain lets you know that something is bothering you.
One of the ways I like to think of who we are in the Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness is we are those who check it out. So when you have something bothering you, it’s important to check it out. That’s one of the ways that you’ll liberate the messenger.
If the message is delivered such that you receive the message in full, then the messenger can be dismissed. That’s another way of saying the pain can go because it’s done its job. Often it’s related to something that needs your attention. So part of checking it out is following it inside to the message that is there for your learning, growth and upliftment.
Sometimes we can do something that helps take away pain, like analgesics or pain-relievers. There are also other ways where you can distract yourself so that what you’re looking at and focusing upon is not the pain. Sometimes that’s really what’s up for you – to do something to change your focus.
My mom often said, “It’s always something.” For a long time, I wondered what she was saying. Early on, I figured that usually when she was saying that, it was something about me personally. Like I was not quite satisfied or I was not quite right. Later on I realized it wasn’t so much just about me. It was more a statement of reality, at least in this world.
There is always something we’re going to be carrying because that’s the price of admission into this world. We carry a karmic load until we don’t have one, and then we’re out of here. Even if we do still have one, sometimes we’ll be out of here and with that we’ll be back, because that’s the nature of how this world serves. It serves by giving us the opportunity to work through and complete whatever is the karma.
Sometimes we lose sight that the law of karma, the law of cause and effect, is actually in our favor. It can be a balancing action, but it can also be an opportunity to learn and grow. So it’s a progressing action. You can do it laughing, crying, or in pain or suffering. Maybe you can do it relatively pain-free. How would that work, to get free of pain? By choosing to be free with the pain.
Everybody has that option because we have a consciousness that’s not attached to the pain. Tuning in to that consciousness may take some ability and practice. We can learn how to deal with the pain in such a way that it’s not in our way of perceiving it as painful because we change in how we relate to the pain. Does that work in terms of if the messenger (the pain) is still standing by? What if we’ve done all kinds of things to distract or numb our self from the pain? Can we increase our ability to withstand the pain?
If the messenger is still there, then I would say that’s a hint. You haven’t really translated the message such that you are free of the messenger. Consider whether there is something you’re not attending to that is calling to your attention for upliftment, learning and growth. So when pain becomes chronic or intensifies, those are hints there is more for you to attend to for awareness. Awareness reveals responsibility. Looking into the causes of pain can be curative.
Make good choices with your awareness. Sometimes people use awareness to avoid or deny. That doesn’t work very well. That’s when the pain may tend to increase or intensify its message. The pain may be saying, “You need to pay attention to this. If you don’t, then I’ll persist and I’ll tend to increase.” So there would be more and more responsibility to attend to what you need to do.
The reality of the world is that there’s going to be something in the negative. Pain is one of those things that just kind of lets us know we’re in the world. This world has some pain in it. We’ve all run into pain in some way.
Pain is an ordinary part of being in the world. You may not register pain up to certain point. If you have difficulty enjoying or appreciating your life, then it has become something that is calling for you to pay attention. Clearing the pain is important for your health and well-being.
One of the ways to be triumphant in this world is to survive and to endure. That is a sign that you’re handling the world. The longer you’re here, the more experiences you acquire that are valuable to your learning and growth. In other words, you can be thankful, which is a key for well-being. It lightens things up to be grateful and express your gratitude.
Learning from the Past
In MSIA, we are not a regressive movement. We’re not trying to get you in touch with your past. Our approach is more that the past is gone. It is done. We are done with it, so let’s go. Let’s get up. Let’s move. Let’s use where we are and what we are and take advantage of all of whatever is present. So we really don’t spend much time looking into the past because it’s not necessary. But we can use the understanding of it.
You can change the way you regard your past and your upbringing. You can look at it and consider that you must have had those experiences in some way because they are serving you.
Is it okay if we go through winter to get to spring? Sometimes that’s how it works. It’s working in cycles. So you can go through difficult times and ask, “Why do I have to go through it again?” Just consider, it will be spring again. If you understand that life has cycles, and cycles bring about things that happen in timing or a pattern, then it’s not a judgment or an indictment that you’re not living correctly. It’s just that’s how cycles work and then understanding, “Here it comes again.” If you understand how that works, you’ll be prepared ideally for when it does come.
We all have some version of these cycles. There are those who study these cycles, like biorhythms, numerology, astrology, etcetera. There’s a variety of those in play that we’re all subject to. Being in awareness of these cycles is valuable.
You can look at you what are you aware of regarding your past, even your past existence or past life, to see if something showed up that’s valuable for your learning. It could show up in a nightmare or where you have a dream and you’re in another time and then you realize something about that experience. It may be that what you realized is that you missed an experience and wished it had occurred, or not occurred, in that way. You may judge, “Oh, the good days are gone.” Or maybe you realize, “I’m really glad I’m not in that now, but I’m still affected by it.”
Consider that once is enough. Even if you say, “It’s so fresh in my awareness,” even though the repository is still here, you can use it as a sort of tabula rasa where you start over with a new memory field. Some of that comes into what you were born into, such as family karma. Some of that can be about holding on to the judgment, the bitterness, including self-judgment.
Consider that a referee comes in and says, “That’s enough. No more. You don’t need to figure it out.” That’s good. Some things are past understanding, because there’s an understanding that surpasses understanding. You can just go to that understanding because you don’t personally need to understand. It works because it’s a spiritual law. There’s understanding that somehow God has good in it all the time, every time. It’s hard to get our consciousness around that when we consider something on the order of a murder, mayhem, torturing, etcetera. So how would we get over that?
In this world, we have some things to heal, the causes of those things, which are still in process. There’s still something like a misunderstanding. You can look at the facts or try to study those times psychologically, and then try to find out how could people who seemed rather ordinary do such things. It’s not about that, and it’s not about understanding it. It’s about understanding that something came through in a very negative disturbing way, and now we bless it. Blessing whatever has happened is a way to respond with understanding.
It may not be easy with whatever you’re dealing with personally. Maybe you have the toughest case. Maybe not. It doesn’t matter. You have what you have. It’s still important to stay open so you are choosing to be a vessel for blessing.
Once you declare the blessing, there’s also responsibility. So stay open. There’s no moment in anyone’s existence where there’s not an opening to see the blessing, the greater good, because that’s how light and life gets in. It comes through an opening. It comes through a dynamic that you’re chosen. Not because you’re something wretched or despicable, but because you’re something good and your life is already blessed. So to be able to breathe, to have another breath, is confirmation that your life is good. You are adored of God. You might say, “Then why am I having such challenging circumstances to realize that I’m adored of God?”
This world is not your home but one part of it. It’s not going to be over in this world. This world is not it. There is a passage. There’s going to be a transformation. It’s a glorious transformation. In preparation of that, it’s good to stay open.
Stay in trust and faith that your life is about overcoming. It’s a triumph. It’s a celebration. Why does it have to be a rough road to get there? It just seems like it is at times. Nobody is exempt. Everybody has moments where they feel down or off. At those times, we can reach out in compassion to one another. If there’s nobody else around, then reach inside for the compassion always present in your heart of hearts.
Intention for Peace and Joy
With initiation, we are moving toward liberation. Ambition is part of what works as an intention. Carry your intention into the day so the pictures you have, what you put the Light on, what you want more or less of, you hold that to yourself. When you’re in the line at a checkout stand or you’re at a traffic light or somebody cuts you off on the highway, carry your intention into these places and interactions. Carry what it is you want to experience for the day, what you want to share and put out as your contribution to living a blessed life.
If you keep doing what you want in line with your intention, then your intention will become manifest. We often have too many rules about what makes us happy instead of really looking at what makes us happy. It’s not about somebody else’s idea but your own idea of what truly makes you happy, what makes you peaceful or joyful. Be conscious of whatever blessing is present and becoming more manifest.
If you’re in a lapse, those moments when you feel irritable or something is irritating to you, then pick up your attitude. Remember, you are human. Look at what’s bothering you. It’s either from the inside, where what you’re doing or expressing is bothering you, or you are allowing something to come in from the outside. That’s a moment to adjust, to move your awareness to the peace and joy within.
Is it valuable to come together and envision or participate in activities where others are expressing peace or expressing joy? Of course, that’s valuable. But I find it’s even more of a contribution what we do on an individual basis. You can find this especially when you’re by yourself. If there’s a disturbance, like you don’t like being by yourself because you don’t like yourself, then there’s your ministry. You can make greater blessing the focus for your intention. If you’re having a hard time with yourself, then move your intention to finding the peace and joy that is always present inside regardless of what conditions are present. There is always blessing in the Traveler’s presence with you.
Blessing of the Lord’s Embrace
Lord, we come to You as Your children, and as Your children we adore You.
We love the way You are. We love Your strength, Your wisdom, Your beauty,
Your fun-loving nature, Your compassion, Your ability to hold
when we need holding and to inspire when we need inspiration.
Right now we ask and invite You to come powerfully, purposefully,
into our heart and into our personal nature. If in any way we’re attempting
to hide or deny, right now we give that up. We let it go.
We call Your name. We welcome Your light, Your radiance, Your cleansing,
Your healing. We experience Your energy renewing us, vitalizing us.
As we look through our vision there’s clarity, that You give us greater
ability to see and understand the compassionate heart of caring.
We ask You to renew our relationship in this world, that once again
You lift from us, You take what is not necessary, especially what we’ve
been hanging onto unconsciously or through our past actions.
We find You’ve liberated us. You’ve brought forward a new consciousness.
We bless our basic selves, however many there are, so that we’re also
renewed in our appreciation for our life in this world.
We forgive whenever we have misled ourselves and denied the opportunities
that You’ve brought forward because You are bringing new
opportunities forward, and this is who You are.
We feel Your embrace, and we embrace You fully.
We take a moment to close our eyes and experience pure joy, complete peace,
and that special kind of rest where we let go and we relax completely,
knowing we are safe in Your embrace for You are the one who has
the whole world in Your arms.
Read the complete NDH September / October 2016 Edition via ISSUU