consciousness

Dark matter, the key to the universe?

By Peter Spero“About one-quarter of the cosmos is comprised of dark matter — five times that of the ordinary matter that makes up everything we see. Dark matter is often defined by what it isn’t: something that can be seen and something that is energy.

Scientists are pretty sure dark matter exists, but they are not certain what it is made of or how it interacts with ordinary matter. It is considered vital to all the scientific theories explaining how the universe is expanding and how galaxies move and interact.”
Read more: Search for Dark Matter Comes Up Empty So Far | TIME.com

The idea of “dark matter” makes me smile.  What makes up most of the universe, but cannot be seen, and isn’t energy?  What is vital to all of our ideas about the universe and how things within the universe interact?

To me that sounds a lot like space, or rather, consciousness: that which can be pointed to by explaining what it is not (things), and that which is the platform in which all things arise.

Space is not a thing.  If you go looking for it, you will find no-thing.

The awareness that is looking for this key component to the universe is itself the key component, the space of knowing in which all things can be known.

Even if this sounds silly in comparison to all of the scientific jargon surrounding dark matter, I find that letting my mind be blown away is truly enjoyable.  It is in that spirit of enjoyment that I share this video, in which Peter Russell talks about these issues in science, and tries to find words to that which cannot be spoken:

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Waiting

Eckhart Tolle Tells A Joke

Today I watched the following video of Eckhart Tolle telling a joke.  It is pretty funny, but if you do not want to wait around just skip to 2:49 where Eckhart actually makes the joke:

I had to laugh when I saw this.  I realized at the beginning that nothing was actually happening and so skipped forward.  I just did not want to wait.  The joke is truly amusing because waiting for something to happen is a universal experience.  It does not matter how many years you have been meditating, you know what is being referred to when you hear the word “waiting.”

I wait for the bus, I wait in line at stores, I wait for food to cook before I can eat it.  There are a million other ways to wait, but it all comes down to that familiar experience of waiting.

Then there are more personal things we each wait for.  Those might be waiting to grow up, waiting to make money, waiting for a dream to come to pass, waiting for love, waiting to feel happy, waiting for what we want.

A helpful question to ask is, “What am I waiting for?”  The answer may surprise you!  Waiting can be habitual and turn up in a myriad of ways.  Answering this question also makes it easier to see that the condition of “waiting” is more accurately “psychological waiting.”  We wait for things with our thoughts and emotions.

“When this happens, then I can start enjoying my life again,” or, “when I’m finally secure, then I can start working on what I really want to do,” or, “after work is over, then I can relax.”

Like many, I wait for things all the time, but waiting can be a helpful reminder to become present.  When you find yourself just waiting for something to happen, (if you use the internet you know what I mean), use it as a reminder to become present and narrow your life down to your immediate experience.  Use all of your senses to perceive your surroundings.  As if by magic, you are no longer waiting!  You are experiencing life.

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Inspiration

How To Lose Weight Right Now!

CakeI swear this will feel better than any regimen of protein or cinnamon.  

What weighs you down even more than half of a leftover birthday cake?  What is worse for your health than a fast-food sandwich containing bacon, cheese, pancakes, and syrup in one?  Its energy is just as real and contains consequences like any physical substance we ingest.  It’s a grudge.

When I was in high school I found little wrong with holding a grudge.  If I thought you “stole” my boyfriend, or talked badly about me to friends, that was enough for me to carry the weight of negative feelings for you.  It seemed just at the time.  My compassion grew after graduating high school a semester early, and finding that the daily lives of others were not at all like I imagined them to be.  It took time, but I slowly realized that just as my inner life was incomprehensible to even my closest friends, so too were the inner lives of all people.  I found that even though I could be affected by the choices of others, their choices were made from their point of view, in their world, with that person as the main character of the story, just as I am my own life’s main character.  

To drop a grudge doesn’t mean you approve of past actions taken by an individual; it means you allow the past to be as it was, and forgive it for being.  To expend energy fighting against that which is already the case is, bluntly put, insane.  The past that now exists in the present as a thought in the mind can persist in draining your life energy through your reliving it in the present, or it can be relinquished.

By Peter SperoWhat would change in your life if you let go of a grudge?

What would you receive if you relinquished your non-forgiveness? The reward looks different in each circumstance, but rest assured there is a reward, not to mention the actual of feeling of being lighter. The mind doesn’t know this, because its aim and reward is its own thought-made sense of self, which one grudge can easily keep in place. By letting go, the mind thinks it’s losing. And it is. It’s losing its firm grasp on your attention. It’s losing its stronghold on your sense of self. It’s losing what it thinks is all there is: thoughts. Because of this it has cunning ways of convincing you why you can’t let something go, why it is in your best interest to not forgive. Don’t be fooled, the mind will use its best logic to keep its identity as your sense of self. When it uses convincing logic to maintain its position on the pedestal of your awareness all that is needed is to see it for what it really is. The ego.

The mind-made sense of self pales in comparison to who you truly are. A thought in your head can never come close to the majesty of your being. You are consciousness. You provide the space for thoughts to be created and noticed. And one of the best ways to gently let go of the ego is to let go of a grudge. Who can you forgive today?

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spirituality

When The Going Gets Tough

HeartSometimes the days when you feel the least connected can be the most fruitful.  Part of the practice of being present is staying present even when you’re feeling out of sync.  There are days when I notice the voice in my head getting frustrated with the smallest things.  When I experience a day where a stranger sitting too close to me on the bus gets to me, I find it is a good opportunity to explore where the negative energy is coming from.

Occasionally the thoughts in my head give rise to negative emotions.  But more often than not, I first experience a low-level of unhappiness or discomfort emotionally that ends up giving rise to negative thinking.  Watching yourself, when you are reactive or irritated, builds the power of your presence even more powerfully than when you are watching yourself have a positive experience.  Spiritual growth happens in these uncomfortable moments.

The mind will often try to solve discomfort and in turn create more discord.  Noticing this as it happens is a crash course in awareness.  The strength of your own presence creates powerful roots of awareness during seasons of discontent.  This means that no matter what outer and inner circumstances you witness throughout your life, you will have the anchor of your own presence guiding you and working all situations for your good.  This doesn’t make negative energy any more comfortable, but it gives it meaning through the valuable lessons gleaned from it.

Eckhart Tolle provides an amazing free online resource for spiritual awakening and learning about presence.  You can sign up for this free online “UnCourse,” as he calls it, here:  https://www.eckharttolle.com/uncourse/register/.  Whether you are experiencing times of joy, or discord, the opportunity for a more awakened consciousness is always readily available.

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Ego

9 Unconscious Ways The Ego Takes Over Your Life

Reflected LightThe ego needs a lot of things.  Without wanting, the mind made self loses steam, and your true self beyond the voice in your head begins to emerge.  Finding out the nature of your true self beyond what your thoughts are attached to is one of the greatest adventures of being a human.  But how can this actually be done?

To the mind, it appears that there is nothing beyond itself, because it only recognizes things.  Space is incomprehensible to a thought whose meaning is always attached to some-thing.  Yet, space is our home.  We are consciousness, that which is aware and watching.  We are the space in which all things arise.  When you balance your life with space you have access to the power that created the universe.

In Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth he offers pointers to help create more inner space, and diminish the egoic mind.  One of these pointers is to become aware of patterns that operate in your life which attempt to inflate or repair the egoic sense of self.  The list of these patterns literally makes me laugh out loud, because I have seen each one operate in my life at one time or another.  Experimenting with letting go of these patterns whenever you become aware of them can at first feel uncomfortable, but then give rise to a powerful feeling of spaciousness and peace.  The true self then has room to emerge.   I hope reading these “ways in which people unconsciously try to emphasize their form­-identity,” as Tolle puts it, is as amusing and enlightening to you as it was to me:

  1. Demanding recognition for something you did and getting angry or upset if you don’t get it
  2. Trying to get attention by talking about your problems, the story of your illnesses, or making a scene
  3. Giving your opinion when nobody has asked for it and it makes no difference to the situation
  4. Being more concerned with how the other person sees you than with the other person, which is to say, using other people for egoic reflection or as ego enhancers
  5. Trying to make an impression on others through possessions, knowledge, good looks, status, physical strength, and so on
  6. Bringing about temporary ego inflation through angry reaction against something to someone
  7. Taking things personally, feeling offended
  8. Making yourself right and others wrong through futile mental or verbal complaining
  9. Wanting to be seen, or to appear important (Tolle)
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You

“Be yourself- not your idea of what you think somebody else’s idea of yourself should be.” ― Henry David Thoreau

Joey and KatieThe most vital component to your life’s purpose is being yourself.  I don’t say this to be kind or encouraging, but as a matter of urgent importance.  While you many never see it, you being yourself is changing someone else’s life.  Without you being who you truly are, the world is missing its only chance of you.

So who are you?  It is easier to start with who you are not.  You are not a bundle of thoughts.  You are not who you think you are, or who anyone else thinks you are.  You are not the name, weight, and hair color on your driver’s license.  Now that we’ve gotten all of that out of the way, what is left?

You will know who you are by witnessing yourself free from these thought-made selves it is so easy to get attached to.  You don’t have to try to be who you are, and you definitely don’t have to “figure it out.”  Who you are emerges when you untangle your identity from your thoughts and circumstances.  Allowing yourself just to be in the world, experiencing life as it is, and following your own joy in whatever way it expresses itself, will show you yourself more truly and miraculously than your mind could have ever thought up.

I love this video.  This little girl is so inspiring, not because of a particular skill, but because she is being herself.  And what happens when you are who you are, without trying to be what you think you should be in the eyes of others?  People notice you!  People think you are doing something amazing!  You bring people joy!  You don’t have to be the best at this or that.  You only need let your true self act, and it will be better at whatever it does than any amount of practice could produce:

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Inspiration

Living For The Weekend And The Secret To Joy

What is so wonderful about a vacation to the Caribbean? What is appealing about walking along a white sandy beach at sunset?  Why do we so often long for the next vacation, or live for the weekend?  To put it simply, we long for the feeling.

If you’ve ever had a wonderful experience on vacation, or a revitalizing weekend after a long week of work, you have experienced a beautiful inner feeling that keeps you coming back for more.  Many addictions begin just this way.  There is an experience of a feeling that you enjoy to such an extent that you want to feel it again and again.  What are you actually enjoying?

Your mind will tell you, “I love the margarita,” or, “I love laying on the beach in the sun with nothing to do and a good book to read.”  The mind confuses the state of joy with the outer experience it perceives while in that state.  But it is not the form of the experience that keeps you coming back for more.  It is the state of joy.  The joy of being.  I call it a “state” because it is not the same as an emotion that passes through your consciousness and then dissipates.  Joy is an inherent natural state of the being that you are.  Joy is discovered when layers of form, emotions, and thoughts are uncovered.  Joy is revealed, not created.

That longing for a vacation, or the weekend, is a longing to be back in that state of pure joy, your true state of being.  Once you have realized that what is so enjoyable about a good time is not the experience, but the state of joy itself, you open yourself up to being able to experience that which you desire regardless of circumstance.  Joy is your natural state, it is always present.  It merely gets covered up by thoughts and the “cares of the world.”  How did you feel on your last vacation?  How did you feel Friday after work was over?  Relax and allow that sensation to well up from within you, imagine you are on that beautiful sandy beach with clear waves rolling over your toes.  Joy can be uncovered at any moment in any situation; it doesn’t have to be Friday.

The following video on manifesting abundance operates under this very same principle.  Abundance, like joy, comes from within.  The experience of abundance in outer form is only its surface layer.  The state of abundance originates within you:

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