Prayer: What do you think of when you think of that word? What does it mean to you? If you pray, what kind of prayers are you putting out there?
In my contemplation and learning, I’ve been changing my theology around what prayer really constitutes. So many of us have been so ingrained, whether through religion or just general spiritual teachings, to pray prayers of supplication; meaning prayers that ask for things. How many times have you created a manifestation board, gluing on all the things you *want* in your life? I’m going to discuss a different idea… but first, what are prayers of supplication and how dare we ask for more when so many people go without? Let’s consider some of these Belief Systems, aka BS.
BS: Asking For More Is Selfish when so many people are suffering.
If you subscribe to the idea that God, or whatever name you use to refer to a higher power, is within ALL THAT IS, then why would you be left out of the invitation to experience everything that exists as a PART of ALL THAT IS?
There is nothing wrong with desiring to have more in your life. We ALL deserve everything that God has put into this existence; ALL that serves our highest good and highest healing. Having nice things is completely ok. I’m just putting that out there, as many people feel that desiring to have more is selfish, sinful, expecting too much… But that’s just not true. We ALL are welcome to ALL the best that life can offer. THAT is why there is so much in existence for our enjoyment! Where we go wrong is in HOW we approach welcoming these things into our lives. Often, it is through a lens of not having enough supply… so we go down the path.
BS: The Path of Lack.
“I don’t have enough money…”
“I am going to eat all these chips because I’m dieting later…”
“There’s just not enough time…”
“I can’t find a job anywhere…”
and so many other thoughts of lack invade our Belief System.
These thoughts are partially what create what we think is our “reality”; and I put reality in quotes because our typical thoughts about what reality is are skewed as well. I will address that at another time. Getting back to our thoughts of lack… typically a feeling of fear of not having enough drives these thoughts, and in turn, we ask that more be supplied. This is what I mean by a prayer of supplication: asking for something to be supplied because it is missing in your life. The problem is, it could be our very prayers that is keeping things away!
Pray a prayer of gratitude for already having been provided with all you need to live your highest and best life.
Just do a little experiment with me… ACIM (A Course In Miracles) gives us a different prayer: one that says, “Thank you for helping me understand that this is already part of my existence.” That’s pretty heady stuff, I get that. And when trying this for the first few times, it really does feel like BS. How can something I don’t have already be a part of my existence? Perhaps this is where a little faith comes in, and besides, you aren’t losing anything by moving toward a brighter way of living by uttering words in a different way! Instead of using words of supplication with words like “want”, just try changing that to words of gratitude for allowing you to re-member (re-member: coming back to that forgotten connection we already have with the Divine). A prayer of gratitude for Re-Membering that through your Divine connection, you simply re-connect to what is already yours to being with, that which you’ve been pushing away by thinking it’s not.
Just try it. Try it for your next week and see if there aren’t some shifts in how things seem to be going for you.
Here are some “prayer starters”, in case you are still so stuck in your BS () that you don’t even know where to start…
“Thank you for helping me remember all that serves my Soul’s agenda…”
“Thank you for giving me the understanding that my highest good is already happening…”
“I’m so grateful that All is exactly right…”
Try to step away from what you think the outcome *should be* and open yourself to what your Highest Soul’s Agenda actually IS. Give it some time… “Fake it until you make it…” See what shifts begin to happen in your life. You may just find yourself in a completely different mindset about what prayer can do.
A: Great question! The word “interspiritual” was used in Brother Wayne Teasdale’s book, “The Mystic Heart: Discovering a Universal Spirituality in the World’s Religions”. It is thought of as the mystical spirituality that is the origin behind all of the world’s religions.
From my own point of view, Interspirituality is finding God in nature, relationships, challenges, joys, and every aspect of life! Interspirituality allows me to have powerful, deep, and highly personal spiritual beliefs without the dogma of religion. It is going within to find the Spirit alive in my own living; growing in faith and understanding; developing my own personal relationship with God and what it means to live in love, integrity, and compassion without relying on a specific set of guidelines set forth through a religious doctrine.
Over the years, I have found such comfort, peace, growth, love, compassion, and passion for living through seeking this personal, deep, and authentic connection to Spirit. Interspirituality has been a loving Invitation to enter into Spirit rather than a Commandment to follow the rules…
For me, Interspirituality is: * LOVE of ALL LIFE * COMPASSION * CHRIST-LIKE LIVING * CONNECTION * GRATITUDE for EVERYTHING
I invite you to learn more through engaging in our various programs, or ask about BoL’s Spiritual Coaching.
There is more to life than going though the motions. ♥
A Yule Log is symbolic of the Green Man, cut down at harvest time to be reborn anew! When lit, its flames invoke the light of the returning Sun, which warms and brightens our lives.
If you have a fireplace or fire pit, now is a great time to search for a Yule Log. A fallen oak, fruit, or birch log is perfect! If your only option is a limb from a living tree, always ask the tree’s permission and leave an offering in its place: a crystal, stone, or herbal charm. Bringing your log inside is important to give it time to dry so it can burn properly. Take time to “get to know” your yule log; it’s bark, the concentric circles, the energy of it. Try to connect with the life it lived and the things it saw in its lifetime.
If your log rests flat on a surface (alternatively, you may attach small pieces of wood to stabilize it) you may choose to drill 8 holes in the log, the diameter of candles that you’d like to put into place. Gathering greenery such as holly, mistletoe, and pine boughs, place them around your log and enjoy the light your Yule log offers you.
Your Yule log may be set on a wreath in your fireplace and lit, invoking the Guardians of the East, South, West, and North. Allow your log to burn, yet save the last bits to use to start your Yule log blazing the following year. If you do not have a hearth, allow the candle to burn as low as is safe and save your log for the following year, as an alternative.
I am learning more and more about this word. As I grow in Big “S”- Self, that part of Spirit that lives within me, I am realizing how much of my life has been lived in “teacher-mode”: giving direction, teaching, telling “how”… Honestly, it has, in my experience, been a rather repelling way to live. People don’t enjoy being told. They don’t enjoy feeling like they are being treated like children. So, as a teacher of children for over 30 years, you might imagine that this has been a very large part of my way of life; one that is difficult to release. In my journey, I am slowly, ever. so. slowly. learning to shift from this mindset. Thich Nhat Hahn has said that before we “strike” the bell, we must first “invite it to awaken” by gently giving it a “half” sound. Recently, I acquired another singing bowl. It is a small, dainty bowl that has a beautiful, inviting sound. Each and every time I pick it up, Thay’s teaching comes to mind and I strike it very gently to wake the bell, then continue on with its use in a sacred way. How now to transform my day to day living with this practice? What I do know is that I’ve spent so much of my life trying to start out “perfect”; to be sure that all my i’s are dotted and t’s crossed. So, perhaps, a good place to begin is to gently invite my own awakening with a “half-sound”. Perhaps awakening my own S-Self in this way will also awaken my own mindfulness of how I tend to just “bang the bell” of others and bring about a transmutation of action. So, I “invite” you in. I “invite” you to recognize my perfect imperfection and desire to shift into mindfulness. And, I “invite” you to make this journey with me. In Love and Recognition of Our Oneness, ~ Rev. Emma
Maybe you can help, maybe relate, maybe disagree, or maybe just hold space for those of us going through these crazy times.
But, I’m struggling…
I struggle with Expression:
of the LOVE that I physically feel as a strong, joy-filled sensation in my heart for ALL of humanity,
versus the heartbreak felt when witnessing one scene; one comment after another displaying of the inhumanity and indifference we have all sown.
I struggle with Desire:
to want so eagerly to use this “Beecken of Light” to shine LOVE and HOPE and FAITH that everything is exactly right to learn what we need to learn to progress,
versus screaming my outrage over the injustices set before us by the powers that be; where women, children, and marginalized groups are abused; where ordinarily caring, funny, engaging people are manipulated and turn on each other like hungry dogs to fight for scraps they are thrown.
I struggle with Vision:
this belief that our UNITY will create a world where the realization of our ONENESS outshines the FEAR created by individuality,
versus the DIVIDING justifications for why that can’t happen.
I struggle with Direction:
finding a path that gently leads ALL of us to our natural state of LOVE, FORGIVENESS, and COMPASSION,
versus just turning people off from a stance of JUDGEMENT.
For, that is the INTENTION: to bring us TOGETHER in the WELCOMING RECOGNITION of our CONNECTEDNESS, rather than repel through abrasiveness.
Perhaps that intention might be where we can ALL meet in the middle.
And, if there is one thing I have learned in my trips around our sun, it is that ENERGY FLOWS where INTENTION GOES.
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