Sometimes the most powerful response we can offer is silence.
Sunday, April 30, 2017
Saturday, April 29, 2017
It has been a while since I silenced my brain enough to write a piece of poetry. So this morning I decided I would be intentional about turning off my non stop radio station in my brain and see what flowed out. I was inspired by a verse from Psalm 46 that says Be still and know that I am God.Read More
Friday, April 28, 2017
Thursday, April 27, 2017
This week's song of the week reminds us to listen to the sounds of silence. It is not until we shut off the non stop thinking radio in our brains that we can hear the silence we need to work things through https://youtu.be/76n_uE_W31A
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Today is National Pretzel Day. I am always amazed at how many foods have their own holidays. Growing up my father loved pretzels, just about any kind, hard or soft, sticks, twisted, large or small. My favorite are the soft ones which are twisted and look like what in my mind is a pretzel. As a child, I would hold them up to my face and think they reminded me of a face. Two holes for the eyes and one for the mouth and the nose was the space where they came together.
As an adult, I was amazed when I learned that the crossing of the pieces was linked back to the ways people used to hold their arms when they were praying, crossed. Today we hold our hands together in prayer. However, in the 600’s people crossed their arms in prayer. The three holes were representative of the Holy Trinity (the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). Learning this gave me a new perspective on what is one of my favorite treats, the pretzel, especially the soft ones that I love to eat.Read More
Tuesday, April 25, 2017
Monday, April 24, 2017
This past month I have come to realize that when I make room for silence in my life, I am creating a room of my own. It is the simplest addition to my home that I can create. There is no building permit needed, no contractors, no designers. All I need to do is sit, be still, and be. In doing so, I create a room which is my ashram. It is my place to just be in communion with the one I call the Ultimate Consciousness. I do not need anything here. I do not need candles, or pillows, or cushions, or furniture. I just need to be still and be in the presence of the Divine.
My room is not external, although it could happen in a physical room. It is a room within myself. It is one that only I and the Divine are allowed to enter. It is a room constructed by holy silence. It is here where I tap into a strength that prevents the noises of life from being heard. It is a space where the only things I can hear is my breathing, my feelings, and the whispers of the Sacred. It is as if I am in one of those soundproof booths and all I can hear is what I can hear, nothing more, nothing less.Read More
Sunday, April 23, 2017
Saturday, April 22, 2017
Friday, April 21, 2017
I love God’s sense of humor. The Ultimate Consciousness know that once I get going working, I am on a roll and can easily forget to take my micro fast breaks. It never ceases to amaze me how the Infinite uses everything in my environment to keep me balanced, centered, and focused. Normally Dr Wally and Mr Mittens spend most of their human interaction time with Zoe. They only come to my side of the desk when they want treats and she is not here.
The last few days I have been going like crazy, trying to stay current with those areas I am current in while catching up with those areas I need to catch up in (still). I know I need to take micro fast breaks, but the pressure to catch up seems to want to cancel them out. Enter Mr Mittens stage right. He has developed this new habit of three to four times a day crawling up on my shoulder and not leaving until I have patted his bottom and held him for at least 15 minutes.
Being who I am, I decided this was a great time to take my micro fast and meditate. So I pat his butt as part of my meditation and we both go into a deep silence until he tells me our time is over by licking my ear and going back to his blanket to nap. I guess meditating with me wears him outRead More
Thursday, April 20, 2017
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
I woke up this morning thinking not so much about food, about how we come together to share meals together and create memories. This year, I have been reminded in numerous ways that sometimes this is not possible and sometimes what has not been possible becomes possible. This past week so many people around the world celebrated traditions which brought families and people together. My Facebook feed was filled with images of families gathering, sharing meals, creating memories and reinforcing traditions.
At the same time, I have friends for whom this was not possible. Those they loved were in hospitals, incarcerated, and for others reasons were unable to be at the table. Growing up in a Jewish household every year at the Passover Seder we would pour a cup of Wine for the Prophet Elijah. As a child, I understood it as we were holding a space for him at the table. As an adult, I understand it is a reminder of a gathering of a larger family and at a larger table.Read More
Tuesday, April 18, 2017
It's Sharing Time! Silent Space http://inspiritual.biz/spiritual-discussion/2017/4/18/silent-space
Last week in my personal journal, Stirring my Spiritual Waters, I wrote about The Silent Space One of the things I wrote about was how I can sit in my dining room and gaze out into the garden and soak in the silence. Yesterday, as I was sitting in my dining room and gazing out into the garden I realized that I was watching a performance, or perhaps it was a praise and worship service being led by the various inhabitants of our garden. The windows prevented me from physically hearing anything that was really going on in the garden or the sounds which things were actually making, but I could sit, watch, and hear on a different level.
One of the first things I noticed was that I had two wind chimes hanging in one of our trees in the backyard. I had remembered having someone hang one of them for me, but had no memory of this second one. This one was different and sparkled every time the sun shone on it in just the right way, it reflected a rainbow out on to the green blades of grass. Both of them moved with the wind and even though I could not hear the sounds, I could watch the chimes move and in my mind, I could hear these beautiful sounds singing to my soul.Read More
Monday, April 17, 2017
Sunday, April 16, 2017
Saturday, April 15, 2017
I have been thinking a lot about Thich Nhat Hanh’s idea of fasting from all forces of information. I have been intentional the last few days of being more mindful of what I am physically digesting through what I eat and drink. However, I need to be more mindful of what I am consuming in addition to physical food and beverage. This is just one of the nutriments I ingest each day. I try to be mindful of what I am ingesting sensorally as well. It has helped that we have deleted television from our lives, as so much of what is in the media these days is not what I consider to be nutritionally helpful or energizing for me in my journey. Other then what I have to read to teach, I intentionally work at surrounding myself with sounds, smells, feels, images, and tastes that are positive, calming, and uplifting. I have intentionally worked at removing sensory nutriments which are not contributing to my own spiritual evolution.Read More
Friday, April 14, 2017
Thursday, April 13, 2017
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Years ago, I got in the habit of starting my day by writing down five things I have to be grateful for. Giving thanks is not just a good thing to do, it is an integral part of my spiritual journey and helps me stay grounded, balanced, and working on enriching my life. I know others have suggested writing 5 things in in a journal each evening, but I find it a great way for me to start my day. However at night, sometimes around the dinner table or before we go to bed, my wife and I take a moment to give thanks for one thing the other one did that day that made us feel loved. I am always surprised at the little things that make her feel loved.
Sometimes I am grateful for things I have. However, sometimes I am grateful for situations that did not turn out the way I wanted because they provide me opportunities to learn, grow, and evolve. Each time I step foot in the kitchen, I have to much to be grateful for. This morning I realized how blessed I am to have access to all the Pampered Chef tools and utensils I have acquired since becoming a consultant and the lessons they have taught me.Read More
Tuesday, April 11, 2017
It's Sharing Time! Practicing Silence http://inspiritual.biz/spiritual-discussion/2017/4/11/practicing-silence
Monday, April 10, 2017
At Love & Inspiration yesterday morning, I commented about how silence is a bridge, not a barrier. Silence becomes the bridge through which we traverse the abyss to the Divine who dwells in the deepest of our internal sanctuaries. It is the noise which are the barriers, which distract us and prevent us from making spaces and places for silence.
When create spaces of silence, we create a space for us to be ourselves and to journey to the inner sanctuaries within us where the Divine dwells. Being intentional about creating space in our lives for silence, is like honoring the Sabbath. It is radical and counter-cultural. It is about us creating margins in our life where we can just sit and be.Read More
Sunday, April 9, 2017
Saturday, April 8, 2017
Friday, April 7, 2017
Today I just want to thank you for what Elizabeth Gilbert calls the Big Magic in my life. I know for years you placed the idea of a prayer and meditation garden in my heart. I am so grateful you did and for the miraculous ways you worked to make it happen.
I continued to be saddened by how few places there are in this area where people can go be quiet and at the same time feel safe and alone. I remember when I was more mobile, how I could go to a house of worship and sit in a sanctuary. However, those days seem long gone as most places are locked during non-worship hours. There are places where you can go play, socialize, or walk your pet, but virtually no where that you can just go and sit and be still; no place where you can just go and sit in the silence which is you.
This is why I felt so called to create our prayer and meditation garden. It is that space. A space where you can just meander back, sit on one of the benches, listen to the sound of the wind through the chimes, gaze out at the plants, and just be. It is a space that radiates love, light, and peace. Even when our neighbors are out in their yards, they honor the space as sacred. I find it humbling when even our neighbors meander back and sit their soaking up the silence and listening to your voices.Read More
Thursday, April 6, 2017
We all need a quiet place where we can go and live and hear the words of the Infinite. The amazing thing is we do not have to go anywhere to have that space. We can create it where ever we are https://youtu.be/nEbXCtE6tMs
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
The other day I was listening to someone near and dear to my heart. I would say we were having a conversation, but really, they just needed me to sit and listen. Sometimes we all need that in our lives. After we hung up, I found myself sitting with sadness about how bitter and hardened their heart was. Somehow that led to me thinking about two vegetable potatoes, because when we bring them home from the store are hardened, and kale which can be bitter if not treated properly. Interestingly when transformed, they can become soft, tender, and nutritious.
Kale can be quite bitter, but massaging it with one’s hands causes it to break down the structure of the kale and causes it to wilt, change color and shrink. You can also add a little olive oil or salt to assist with the process if desired, however, in most cases, a little tender loving care will do. Isn’t that how our hearts can be as well. Sometimes we have allowed life to harden our heart and cause us to become bitter. I remember being part of a meditation group once where we were told to see ourselves opening our chests and taking our hearts out and examining its condition. Was it smooth and soft or were there hardened spots. In those places where our hearts had hardened, we were guided to gently massage our hearts, like the kale, until they had returned to their softened texture and we had transformed them. Then we gently placed our hearts back in our chest and secured them in place allowing ourselves to feel the release of all that which had hardened our hearts. Sometimes, we need to work with our hearts, like we do with kale and gently massage away that which has caused our hearts to harden.Read More
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Monday, April 3, 2017
I always tell folks that it takes a long time to grow an old friend. Friendships require time. It takes time to develop the kind of intimacy with someone where you can stand with them in silence and still enjoy the company. Silence, waiting, time and respect for the other’s space are all elements of friendship.
Sometimes the greatest gift we can give someone is our silence. My days are filled with me talking to people in some way, shape, or form. So the greatest gift my wife can give me sometimes is the gift of silence. The time to just be and not have to speak. We can sit next to each other and just be. Even though we may not be speaking a word, the communication is powerful and loving.Read More
Sunday, April 2, 2017
Saturday, April 1, 2017
The April issue of One Spirit Many Voices is now available for download https://sharon-jacobson-hw8i.squarespace.com/s/April-2017-One-Spirit-Many-Voices-Newsletter.pdf