just be it It’s about the work involved in establishing a dedicated practice to feelings of a bigger belonging through practices aimed at increasing feelings of compassion, gratitude and forgiveness

I’m Here. I Just Want to Be Here, Now

Breathing in “Yes”, Breathing out “Thank you”

The more we can say, “I’m here. I just want to be here, now fully embracing this moment” the less we suffer. The practice is to breathe in “yes“ to what is before us in this moment, and breathe out “thank you“ for the gift of this moment, recognizing that we may not see that gift for some time as we are caught in our suffering and attachments.

Breathing in, say “yes” to just being. Breathing out, say “thank you” for the gift of being. With this practice our doing lines up and we wake up from the illusion of our separateness, from the fear and greed that would lead us to cause harm to others.

We can learn to move with the sense of the sacred, with the reverence for the gift of this moment. The Bible asks us to be still and experience God. The Buddha recognizes the suffering that comes from our attachments, and the relief that comes when we let them go. When we let go of the thoughts of the mind and fully enter the body we alleviate the stress that is the cause of so much disease. Brother David Steindl-Rast eloquently speaks about the benefits of gratitude. He says that we feed our gratitude with the recognition for the gift of opportunity to participate. We can always find something to be grateful for, even if it comes down to participating in the gift of the next precious breath. When we pull the mind back, allow thoughts and beliefs to dissipate, we experience joy in the experience of the divine here and now, the experience of heaven, here and now. The suffering that comes from grasping or pushing away can be alleviated by fully entering the experience of the body and touching the sacred in all.

Feeding the Sense of Well Being

We’re continually asking ourselves, “What are we here for?“ Many believe it’s to receive the approval and good opinion of others. However, this creates a prison for us and limits capacity to live in the creative zone. It seems we’re here to “feel good“. So how do we do this? A deeper awareness to the impact of our experiences and what we ingest will help us better understand how we can increase our energy levels, our vitality and life force. 

For me, getting enough sleep is essential. Also, doing the work of being in the present moment instead of stressed about wanting things to be different provides an uncommon equanimity that feeds the energy. A deeper awareness of breathing and extending exhalation energizes me. Having a well functioning digestive system that comes from mindful eating has the focus on how we feel after eating rather than during eating. It lets me see what foods sustain energy, and which foods drain it. The sounds I listen to have an energizing effect or a numbing effect. Listening to the sounds of nature…the birds, the moving water, the rustling of the leaves in the trees… these build energy. The landscape makes a huge difference on the degree of energy we carry and how we feel. For me, blue is an energizing color that still provides a sense of calm and equanimity. Red seems to feed more anxiety and those gray sky days make it more difficult to be in the present moment, more difficult to focus, and all too easy to daydream and wonder. No doubt, the energy of sunshine facilitates and fuels energy. 

It’s helpful to be around children who have fresh minds, children willing to explore new experiences with a sense of wonder and awe. I lose energy when I’m around people speaking as if they have all the answers. Watching media filled with opinion and judgment drains my energy. Sedentary living, watching screens all day, drains my energy and movement feeds it. It’s helpful to be around curious minds willing to step into a sense of wonder and gratitude for each unfolding moment. It’s also helpful to know how the music we listen to builds or drains energy. Does it lift us up or take us down? Music made to facilitate waking up calibrates at a much higher vibration. Media that focuses on non-violence and healing calibrates at a higher level from the dominant violent media we’re exposed to throughout the day. Complaint calibrates to low energy and gratitude calibrates to a higher energy with the necessary consequence of increased joy whenever practiced.

It’s helpful to set a deep intention at the beginning of the day, an intention to feel good, practice gratitude, and vow to not cause harm.  Reaching the end of the day, in recognition that minimal harm was caused by thoughts, words and actions necessarily brings a sense of calm and peace. Cultivating a deep sense of safety in the universe rather than feeding fear and greed, feeds a higher vibration. Living a consumptive life of moderation rather than luxury and excess leads to feeling peace and joy and increased energy.

It’s tremendously energizing when we realize we have the strength to face uncertainty with the stability of a mountain, the freshness of the flower blooming, the clarity of a spring brook and the spaciousness of the air. This is the essence of “just being”. No doubt, if we can ease the suffering of others in anyway, it feeds our life force.  The trick is to stay humble and keep ego from thinking it has fixed something.

I find vacations are also very energizing when it’s a pilgrim’s trip to new territory. If I can take a vacation from judgment/opinion and settle into the nonjudgemental mind, things go better. When I take a break from ingesting food, I develop a greater appreciation for the gift of the nourishment food provides. I am much more careful about identifying the sacred gift of daily bread . When I hold a body weight that feels good I am less tempted to criticize and critique it. I feel more free to ‘just be’. This full acceptance of the body in gratitude for what it provides seems critical for growing life force energy and a higher vibration.  I recognize that I did not create this body, nor am I able to control all my body’s functions. I recognize an intelligence that is far greater than the human mind is at work here. I know I cannot get any closer to that intelligence than by being aware of my own inner energy field, my feeling of aliveness, the animating presence within the body. This seems to be the essence of ‘well being’, a feeling beyond description that’s found more in the center of the body than in the head. Brother David Steindl Rast calls it ‘great fullness’, that place where the craving mind of dissatisfaction has quieted, if only temporarily.

Become more embodied (body aware) and less embedded in the head.

“Just be it” is about the practice of coming fully into awareness of the body and surroundings as one. It’s about escaping the shackles of thought. When we have a practice dedicated to awakening awareness in the body we awaken to the delusion of our separateness.

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