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

Contrasts Between “Be” and “Do” Approaches to Living

While it’s often dangerous to simplify contrasts to a binary view, nature seems to work this way. The way we approach life can often be broken down to one of “subject” or one of “subject vs. object”. This is central to the delineation Just Be It makes between directing our actions from heart’s ‘being’ in contrast to mind’s ‘doing’. Some of the delineations are listed below:

Here, now, interconnected. vs Not here, before or after, separated.

Healed, sense of wholeness. vs Dis-eased, fear.

At peace with Being. vs Restless to Do.

Largest sense of belonging without surrender of identity from smaller group’s belonging. vs. In fear that the smaller group will be threatened from differences

Embraces change and uncertainty with equanimity. vs Attempts to stop change with forceful methods

Values authority demonstrated through deep listening and understanding. vs
Values authority demonstrated through strong belief systems and judgment

Values Laws of Nature as demonstrated through ever evolving laws of science and integration with ancient spiritual wisdom. vs Values cognitive belief systems passed down through second hand information

Listens to understand. vs Speaks to persuade, refusing to openly listen

Dialog vs Debate and argument

Collaborative. vs Persuasive

Love/gratitude/ joy base. vs Fear/scarcity/anxiety base

Healing and stewardship approach to health. vs Prevention and cure approach.

Take a Verbal Vacation

We’re continually engaged in verbal chatter, whether with others or in our own heads. I find it very helpful to train to breaks from this chatter, whether through meditation, yoga, sport, or music. It may not last long, but it gives rise to awareness of the illusion to our separateness. I just found some notes from a retreat we did in Wisconsin with the Madison police force and a group of Vietnamese monks. Here’s a copy of those notes:

Thich Nhat Hanh

Meditation – Breath in – still waters
Breath out – I reflect clearly

Breath in – I’m space
Breath out – I’m free

If the mind is so preoccupied so there’s no space, you have nothing to offer. Most precious thing you can offer beloved ones is space. You must have space around you to be happy.

Dharma talk
Right thinking – reflects the situation as it is. Thinking that helps you understand more deeply. To be loving, compassionate and free.
Wrong thinking – urges you to blame another for all your difficulties.

You and the nature of love are impermanent. No one can swim in the same river twice, it’s always changing.
Our son is our continuation, he carries me into the future.

Law enforcement – a code of behavior that aims at producing harmony and peace. You cannot be taught through anger and authority.

A family should be organized as an organism. 1) protecting itself 2) healing itself
Mindfulness is our agent of protection and healing much like an immune system. Without mindfulness we bring into our bodies/family a lot of toxicity.

When talking with those who preach anger, violence, and fear, simply tell them, “I’ve heard enough of that, let’s talk about positive things.” There must be a code of behavior everyone accepts. Understanding is the very foundation of love. Do you take the time to look and understand? Can you handle yourself with compassion and understanding?

Oxford Dictionary Announces ‘Toxic’ As 2018 Word of the Year

The origins of the word ‘sin’ come from the concept of ‘missing the mark’. So when do we miss this mark? It would seem we miss the mark when we cause harm to ourselves, others, and the environment. When we place concern for our special interests over the harm caused to others, we miss the mark. The core of most spiritual traditions arises from a deeper awareness to the connection of all things. When we can wake up to a ‘bigger belonging’ we’re more careful. We can retreat into our smaller belonging from fear and greed or expand into larger circles of belonging from the felt emotion of compassion and love. When we ‘wake up’ to infusing our actions, thoughts and emotions with a deeper consciousness that periodically smashes the illusion of our separateness, our actions cause less harm. The wake of our life is not so destructive. We leave a gentler footprint that hits that high mark of love. When we sever our sense of belonging, our actions, thoughts and emotions can be toxic. Where our sense of belonging stops is where our violence begins. The root of ‘to heal’ is found in the word ‘wholeness’, to wake up to our sense of oneness.

Toxic was chosen for 2018 because it was so frequently used to describe poisons governments used against humans, the toxic impacts of industry on the air we breath, and the apparent rise of separateness in our cultures as we respond to accelerating changes in technology, climate and global interactions. No doubt, these are very difficult times where multiple options must be explored to determine which actions will best steward the situation and the future of our children. Our options close when we harden to our opinions and beliefs. They expand when we can sit together in silence and briefly touch that space of expanding belonging before we begin to speak.

It’s my hope that the word for 2019 will be ‘stewardship’ or ‘nurture’. As we face impermanence and rapid change, will we come together? Can we move from persuasion, defensive listening and nonproductive debate to dialog? And if we can’t bring ourselves to dialog, can we at least sit together in silence, aiming together to hit the mark, accepting and stating that we don’t know everything? Toxic is that which harms, moving us from health to a lack of ease in living (dis-ease). Can we move to a higher vibration of stewardship, expanding our circles of belonging or will we let fear and greed feed the illusion of our separateness. Will we feed fear and greed, negative thoughts and emotions, and consequent actions that are toxic to others and our environment? Or will we recognize the tremendous gift of our very being and the responsibility we have to nurture others and our planet as ourselves, forever sensitive to impact? Infusing our ‘doing’ with the core of an awakened ‘being’, we are more careful, causing less harm and hopefully contributing to our healing rather than to the wounding.

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