Trust In Loving Goodness

Trust In Loving Goodness

Dear Marilyn,

 

How can I come to accept loving goodness as my natural state of being when I see and experience pain and suffering that happens without a good reason?

 

This question comes from a deep desire to experience love, and to understand, what it means to love.  When you find yourself saying, “I should be more loving” and not really knowing how to do that, pay attention to where that thought is coming from.  Will behaving in a certain way change the conditions or the relationship so then you can feel more loving?  Are you using the idea of “love” to control how you think things should be so you can then be happy?   There is a difference between coming from a state of love or a loving consciousness and letting circumstances dictate whether or not you feel love.

The new approach to spirituality recognizes that we are divine beings having a human experience.  As divine beings we are each the dynamic expression of the Love that created Oneness – the Love of All That Is.  Love is who you are at your core. The energy of Love is dynamic, courageous, bold (not showy – that’s the ego), solemn, peaceful, humble and gives with no attachment to how its gifts are received.  In this sense love is unconditional, meaning it comes forth through connection with the inner self, not based on outside appearances.

Empower Yourself

You mistrust the idea of loving goodness because you have experienced something in your life that knocked you out of the feeling that love is present.   Some circumstances are not fair.  But fairness in the sense of an ‘eye for eye’ has nothing to do with dynamic power of love in action.  You may be harmed by someone but if you choose to hang onto the harm as a reason to disempower yourself and feel like a victim, you are choosing to feel hurt as well.  I am not saying that there is something wrong with feeling hurt, it’s a real emotion.  However, if you ask the question, what would love do allows the hurt and disempowerment to resolve.

It begins by loving yourself.  When your mind is being judgmental and critical toward yourself, you can stop and liberate your thoughts.  Feel into acceptance of yourself, no matter what the circumstances.  The first predator we disarm is the imaginary one in your own mind.  The critic in your mind is the reoccurring pain of all the things others have said to you and that you believed to be true. Know that you are worthy and deserving of all the joy your heart desires.  When your mind is overflowing with fulfillment, when you allow the love to be the dominant focus, you or anyone else in your life will no longer be the scapegoat for unhappiness.

What Would Love Do?

Love is the willingness to take a moment of your time, whether it’s with someone who has triggered you, has a conflict with you or is a great example of how quickly you can be turned away from love, and ask, “What would love do?”.  Love would see that person or situation as calling for love from you, as an opportunity for healing and forgiveness – both to yourself and to them.  Why would you offer that?  The reason is because the people who hurt you intentionally and unintentionally, wouldn’t feel the desire to hurt or abuse others if they felt whole.  Those in whom this desire to lash out or harm exists are expressing the energy of a pattern of pain and underneath they wish to be healed.  They are trying to heal themselves by projecting the pain they don’t know how to deal with onto others.

Thank them for reminding you that your light has the power to liberate you in the name of breaking the cycle of violence, abuse and pain.  That’s what love would do.   When you employ that strategy you will find a potent spiritual process of forgiveness.  For many forgiveness feels like you’re saying this is ok (nothing that has happened to you has to be ok).  If what happened is not ok, then shine your light to up-level the consciousness in both of you.  Use the power of your love to acknowledge the harm and release the hurt so this doesn’t happen to another.  Responding with love is responding with the opposite vibration.  It is possible in the midst of forgiveness to find a concern of equally helping all. In the body of a someone who is acting with unthinkable cruelty is the body of a victim who hasn’t been healed. 

You don’t need to wait for pain to heal yourself.  You can see the love, and send love, honor, generosity to all until your life is filled with a deep love that flows from within.  Your commitment to love affects the world with loving goodness. When you become the light in a darkened world, when you can bless someone who has hurt you with love, there is simply love to share.

How Does One Get Started With Spirituality?

How Does One Get Started With Spirituality?

Dear Marilyn,

How does one get started with spirituality?

By developing a curiosity about the whole self; the truth of who you are in totality.  For some of us this curiosity comes at a time we are experiencing a particularly challenging life event.  Perhaps in a vulnerable moment of feeling empty or lost you turn inward, and sensing there must be something more to life, you want answers from a higher power.  For others it might be a desire to know who you truly are after experiencing the end of significant relationship or job.  You feel it is now time to live life on your terms, and you want to understand what that means.  Or maybe a desire for release from the stress of incessant thinking, always doing for others and trying to control outcomes, causes you to seek the solace and peace of a place of worship.  You are more open to the idea of coming home to your true Self and in your curiosity about who you are, you become willing to explore perceptions of yourself and life beyond present concepts.

The meaning of spirituality is to become aware of and concerned with the spirit or soul nature; through tools, techniques and inspiration you can intentionally connect with your higher consciousness and allow more peace into your experience. Initially you may think that the purpose of becoming more spiritual is to change conditions in your life.  In reality the process of awakening is actually a process of knowing yourself as a divine creator and authentic expression of divine love.

It takes a very courageous soul to break away from the spell that holds human consciousness in the belief that happiness is found when conditions in the world conform to one’s wishes. The truth is that the world can never give you enough happiness because happiness comes from within, from your own feeling nature.  You start on the spiritual path by making peace with where you are in this moment.  Not judging yourself, not trying to change yourself, not wishing things were different, but by simply accepting yourself and appreciating everything that has brought you to this moment as necessary to being here, now.  This is your life and to deny the parts and pieces of it as wrong is to deny yourself love and appreciation for who you have become, and what has led you to decide to explore your spirituality.  So start with self-acceptance and allow everything you feel to be okay.  Whether it’s fear or love, just surrender to the moment, say, “I am here, now” and breathe.  Once you begin to take responsibility for your feelings, and how you feel about yourself, not blaming others for your feelings but recognizing you have the power to choose how you respond, you are on your way to knowing who you really are.  You are more powerful and magnificent than you ever imagined, and you do not have to struggle and suffer to have what you want.  Because what you truly want is to be the creator of more joy, peace and love.

There is no right or wrong way to get started on a spiritual path.  However, I do recommend that you learn to meditate if you do not already do so. The time spent in the peaceful, relaxing spaciousness of meditation allows you to connect with higher energetic vibrations and become familiar with inner balance and calm.   You can download my free meditation guide here.

I also recommend some wonderful healing guided meditations from my teachers, Aaron and Joseph found on their website: https://aaronandjoseph.pagecloud.com

If you are interested in exploring books about spirituality try https://www.holybooks.com

They offer lots of great, free downloads.

And if you are seeking a guide or coach to help you identify other resources, tools and techniques on your spiritual path, reach out to me to set up a time to talk: marilyn@marilyndecalo.com

 

Your Friend On The Path,

Marilyn

Follow The Well-Lit Path

Follow The Well-Lit Path

A well-lit path is an easily recognizable, easy to follow path to an intended outcome or result.  In learning to discern and follow the well-lit path when you decide to create something in your life, you will discover not only how much easier it becomes to focus your time and energy toward accomplishing your goal, but how much more joyful you are as it unfolds. Following the well-lit path means you use less force and more of your own unique, genius power.   The trick is to stay connected with your positive inner emotional or feeling nature, make your decisions from your heart and keep that connection in a prominent position of conscious awareness, not crowded by competing negative beliefs or ideas.

Recognize Your Well-Lit Path Forward

Start with ideas or decisions that come from the heart, that are created with joy, love and appreciation for who you are.  Listen to what your heart says and the insights it offers about your desires.  You can always trust the direction you are heading when you tap into your heart’s wisdom.   The best way to do this is in meditation or a time of reflection with a journal or walk in nature. Become aware of your intention to create something in positive terms, and Intentionally release any resistant thoughts that arise.  Just simply hold your intention in focus as you meditate, journal or walk and allow the good feelings of your desire to dominate your awareness.  Do you feel joy?  Freedom?  Love?  For a few minutes use your imagination to visualize a beautiful, bright pink golden light surrounding you and melting into your heart and onto the screen of your mind; or onto the pages of your journal lighting up the words describing your intended goal or desire.  Tune into those special feelings of actually living your new desire here and now, in the moment as you focus in and clarify the picture.  Breathe in deeply and release any senses of limitation around your goal.  Again, notice how you feel.  This is significant because this empowered feeling state is now lighting your path forward on the way to your intended outcome.  You have tapped into the higher frequency energies your own divine power to create what you want, the source for living through joy.

Once you have brought divine energy into your pursuits be open to accept and implement the inspirations and impulses that come forward, even if they don’t correspond exactly to how you think things should unfold.  Surrender old expectations and use the feelings you felt when consciously making your decision or desire from your heart center to guide you forward in taking the next steps.  By touching back into your heart-energy you will be able see the next step light up before you because you will recognize it as being aligned with the feeling of your desired outcome.  Go into this experience expecting your path to light up with all the guidance and direction you need to accomplish your goals, and you have summoned the energy of light.
Practice turning doubting thoughts into thoughts of light and love and that is what you will find.

The well-lit path is your unique road to follow.  If you truly want to make a difference in your life, to express and offer the authentic you, to get what you want and therefore be the most fulfilled, persist in doing what comes from your heart.  It may be the less-traveled road, but it will always be the most well-lit.

Awakening Light on the Path – Walking a Labyrinth

Walking the labyrinth is an ancient spiritual exercise to develop a sense of inner peace and gain insight into decisions or desires that are reflected on while following the path. There are various interpretations of the labyrinth’s spiritual significance but in general a walk on the labyrinth is seen as symbolic of the sacred journey of our lives.  With each step that metaphorically winds the pilgrim circularly toward the center of the labyrinth, the encounter with the inner self deepens until an answer is revealed and received.  Along the journey to the center there is a releasing and letting go of the old, an opening to deeper insight and understanding; and on the journey back out more and more light is gained until the soul re-emerges more awakened.

In many communities around the world you will find churches which have created labyrinths to nurture spiritual development.  If you are not in a position to walk a labyrinth you can try using a smaller, inexpensive finger version.

 

Seeing With The Heart- An Inspiration Journal now available for purchase by clicking here.

How To Recreate Yourself Through Adversity

How To Recreate Yourself Through Adversity

Does it ever seem like you have more challenges in your life than most other people? As if every time you persevere and turn a corner something else is waiting there to deliver another crushing blow? You are wondering, “Why does this always happen to me?”

We’ve all been there. Myself included. It can be awful. When adversity lines up over and over again it’s easy to feel defeated and respond negatively; and it’s easy to keep the negative momentum spinning, to see yourself as a victim and wonder if you are worthy of goodness and happiness. As humans, we usually experience the setbacks in our lives similarly. Whether we are dealing with divorce, death, layoffs, legal issues, disease, business failure or financial disaster, losing something that’s important can leave us feeling emotionally demoralized, unloved, and hopeless. There are the terrifying physical effects too – depression, head-aches, lumps in the throat, and that sinking feeling in the pit of the stomach that consumes us. When we go through something that shatters our world as we know it, it’s understandable to be focused on the pain.

 

HOW I TURNED THE TABLES ON ADVERSITY

 

I faced one of the biggest unexpected setbacks in my life a little over a year ago when I was let go from a job I loved. Out of the blue I was let go and my world came crashing down. With a son in college, and my husband himself laid off six months earlier I felt tremendous fear, loss and anxiety. On top of that, I soon received a health diagnosis that threw me into a battery of tests, surgery and several more months of recovery. I felt like the world was out to get me. How was I ever going to regain my balance and my joy? I was afraid to be excited about anything new – not even a new job, because all I could see were the downsides. As I became aware of the effects of hopelessness overwhelming me with each subsequent circumstance piling up on the previous one, all I wanted to do was fast-forward through life; to somehow escape it all.

With some time on my hands I started to recognize a pattern of waking up each day in dread. How had I become that person? At one time I had believed that life is to be enjoyed and I could create an amazing life for myself. After six months of wallowing in blame, hurt and misery I began to meditate again. It also happened to be early springtime and the earth was coming alive again; the birds were back and the sun shone a bit longer each day. I found some hope in nature’s rhythm of renewal and took it as a metaphor of my journey.

Meditation created a few cracks in my mental and emotional armor where the light of my inner spark could start to shine through. I started doing walking meditations and found that I looked forward to the feelings of peace and balance I achieved for twenty minutes a couple of times a day. Meditation gave me the small win I needed to feel like I could handle things. I realized that I had completely folded under the pressures of my life and it was up to me – not anyone else – to find the meaning in my life again.

After meditation, my next step out of the abyss was acknowledging my personal responsibility for how I was feeling and responding to the events of my life. If I have the choice to get past my all-consuming reactions, I could use the challenges I faced as opportunities to start over and do it in a way that put being happy, satisfied and fulfilled as my priorities. This was the start of the most amazing journey of personal growth, healing and spiritual awareness that I have ever experienced. I explored the deeper feelings of hurt, betrayal and self-worth that showed themselves in my emotional and behavioral patterns, but I did so because I saw the limitations and blocks I was creating through the beliefs they triggered, and I could now let them go. I become aware of when I was thinking, talking and acting negative, and how that had been coloring my perceptions of my life. When I let go of what was clouding the sun to shine in me I opened a new portal to connect with an inner truth – a more authentic me. I have learned to listen and trust my inner self – my connection to who I am – instead of the outside world, as the source of my happiness. This big shift has empowered me to share the fruits that grew out of devastation and adversity in hopes that it inspires us all to lighten up on ourselves and feel a little better.

 

THE BEGINNING OF EACH NEW JOURNEY

 

I now know that the challenges I have faced – and perhaps will continue to experience (although not as scary) as part of life’s ongoing adventure – are really only an opportunity to start a new (and exciting) journey. As they say, it’s how you respond to the events of your life that make them what they are, and we all have the power to improve how we react. Building the habit each day of listening within, connecting with those ideas and thoughts that bring us joy (Joseph Campbell urged us to “Follow your bliss”) and believing in our own power and freedom to choose how we will feel in each moment is the keystone of not only withstanding challenges, but of thriving. Some call this having a growth mindset and being resilient, but for me it gives rise to a conscious advantage; to be able to ride the waves, to recreate myself and my life on an endless journey, renewed in the potential joy unfolding each day.

Marilyn Decalo Logo, Phoenix

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