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Archive for the ‘Contemplation’ Category

Man is lost and is wandering in a jungle where real values have no meaning. Real values can have meaning to man only when he steps on to the spiritual path, a path where negative emotions have no use. –Sai Baba

The Chinese philosopher, Lao Tse promotes the philosophy that our being is always connected to an Infinite Being – a transcendent consciousness that is behind all. It is not the active manifestation of the created universe, but the original consciousness behind it. It is that which, in stillness and unchanging perfection, always was and always will be.

The secret to a satisfying blend of mindfulness is to realize that there is a natural flow of influences at work in all parts of the universe, due to this interconnection to the original consciousness. Once you can accept this you can begin to sense the natural flow of universal movement and act within that flow. If this moment is not right for a certain type of action, then an aware person can choose to slow the task or simply postpones the action. An easy way of recognizing that a moment is not right is when feeling resistance for a task. When the same aware person senses that the right moment has arrived, then they act and easily accomplish the task.

In Stoic Philosophy the thought is to accept the current circumstances and instead focus on your choices what can you do that is within your spiritual ideal. It means not forcing a situation to be what it isn’t. Look for a better choice to achieve your objective, and/or wait for your innate sense of timing to feel right.

Let’s shift gears and consider our focus and concentration when looking for satisfying mindfulness. Consider that to some degree, we all concentrate or are mindful. Ordinary levels of concentration steady our mind as we read a book or perform tasks such as cook a meal. Because concentration is a neutral quality, it can be used for both skillful and unskilled, or even positive or negative purposes. Those are all choices. Our concentration/mindfulness develops from our wholehearted dedication to a subject or action.

Taking that thought deeper let’s look at meditation as the ultimate mindfulness/concentration exercise. In meditation, the methodical development of concentration brings access to deep inner states and insights. Meditative concentration grows as we become fully focused on one experience to the exclusion of others. Our consciousness becomes engaged and united, one with the subject of our concentration and the influence of the universal transcendental consciousness.

The subject of meditative concentration can be simple. We can focus on visualization, on the breath or a prayer. We can even reach a meditative state when we allow our concentration to carry us away with the flow of music or poetry. The subject of our focus flavors our consciousness, concentration, and choices. If we focus on love, the consciousness will be filled with the quality of love. Our inner states can become filled with their particular qualities of peace or compassion.

All of these schools of thought move us toward understanding our inner states and our connection to a greater consciousness. This, in turn, brings us a sense of virtue, happiness, and emotional resilience.

David Bennett a contemplative life spokesman, energetic healer, and transformational life coach. Author, of Voyage of Purpose and A Voice as Old as Time.
Webpage – https://DharmaTalks.com
Twitter – https://twitter.com/DharmaTalks
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/DavidDharmaTalks

 

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A Contemplative Practice is a Stairway of ReunificationMost spiritual traditions aim for the same ultimate goal: reaching a place of Oneness where we become one with nature, with each other, and with the Divine. But we also recognize ourselves as fallible human beings who live in a world of dualities. One way to transcend this and reach that place of Oneness, our Divine Essence, is by working with our dualities, our inner light, and our shadows. Spiritual development inevitably flows in the direction of love and spiritual maturity. When people turn away from their true nature they thwart their own spiritual development; they no longer move forward.

It can be difficult living a spiritual life in this world that typically rejects all absolutes. Absolutes like the understanding that all things, including humans, are sacred. Many people live life without realizing that deep within the core of our being is a place where our personality and human nature touches the absolute love of Oneness. This place is sometimes called our Divine Essence. Our Divine Essence draws its energy and power from the universal Oneness, and when our essence feels cut off from the Oneness, it withers. When it reconnects, our essence comes alive and we grow spiritually.

It is critical that we acknowledge the importance of inner development in the process of our spiritual growth. Inner development is finding out who we truly are as we connect to our True Nature and requires engaging in contemplation and meditation.

Let’s define the meaning of “reflection and contemplation” before we move on. Reflections are thoughts, ideas, or remarks that occur as a result of meditation, which then become your center of focus in subsequent meditations or a subject for serious thought or consideration for a period of time in your daily life. These contemplations provide a path into your divine nature.  Unlike other meditation techniques designed to empty the mind, reflections intensely focus on an idea while in a state of stillness or mindfulness.

Many times after posting my reflections online, I find that the contemplations and my life crisscrossed in unexpected ways.  For example, after working with a reflection, I then find it is the perfect message for someone who crosses my path in some spontaneous way. Many who follow my daily reflections online report similar experiences. Working with reflections helps you make empowered choices that imbue your life and relationships with substance and depth.

Reflections are meant to stimulate your intellect and intuition and thus open a connection to your authentic self. They may confound, or they may provide “Aha!” moments. You may find you want to work with a reflection for a day, a week, or a month, letting all its nuances and facets bring moments of light into your life. I suggest looking for synchronistic events that complement the energy of the contemplation you are working on. How you engage with your contemplation is personal, and everyone’s experience is unique. Savor each reflection, as if a piece of hard candy were slowly dissolving in your mouth, with many sweet and bittersweet shades. Sometimes wisdom hits square in the face. As when we walk from darkness into brilliant sunshine and it takes time to adjust. Other times it slowly works its way into our hearts and minds by repeated exposure or over long periods of incubation. In the long run, spiritual growth helps unite oneness into all parts of our lives. This is what spiritual transformation is all about.

Since birth, humanity has had one shared purpose, which is reuniting with the spiritual Source from which we came. We all tread this path in our own way to reach the common goal of reconnection with the Light that shines within us. It is this Light that silently summons us and connects our being to the Source of all things. Through daily spiritual practice we experience growth and climb the stairway of reunification. No matter where you are on your ascent, you will find reflections supportive in locating the next step toward nourishing your being. Reflection practice can be considered a wake-up call that challenges you to look at yourself and the many possibilities before you, so you can change the way you live for the better.

I look forward to sharing some reflections in the coming months. They are created through love and come to you in love.

This is my article reprinted from Om Times Magazine, © [2015], and is available at http://OMTimes.com.

David Bennett enjoys the retired life of a public speaker, author, teacher, energetic healer, and transformational life coach. He’s appeared on radio and television, including on Dr Oz,  Angels Among Us, NBC national news, and PBS. A Findhorn Press author, of Voyage of Purpose and A Voice as Old as Time scheduled August 2015.
http://DharmaTalks.com
http://SpiritualSimplicityBooks.com

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