Saturday, October 15, 2005

Spiritual Journey

Dalai Lama
July 14, 2000

"This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no
need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own
heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness."
~ The Dalai Lama

Gary Zukav
September 13, 2000

1. Stop and become aware of what is happening within me.
2. Remind myself that the thoughts I am thinking and the feelings I am feeling come from a part of myself that is frightened.
3. Ask myself “do I want my decisions to be made by a part of myself that is afraid?”
4. What would I do if I were a compassionate and wise person?

August 16, 2002

You need to reclaim your innocence. You need to take all that stuff in your personal world, everything you are tired of and everything that steals energy from your spirit, and begin to look at it in a new light. You need to find beauty in places and people you never saw it in before. You need to find joy in the odd corners of your life. And most of all, you need to begin a new regimen of self-acceptance. If you can do all this, then the world you live in will begin to blossom like a rose.

Little snippets of wisdom. They meant enough to me at the time to write and save them. I don’t think I really understood them at the time, but I do now. I know that I have really come a long way!

For the longest time I really thought that I must be an atheist because I didn’t believe in God as described in the bible. I never could figure out how a beautiful loving entity could really be that much like my mentally ill, highly abusive mother. How could God really be jealous, polytheistic, judgmental, and vengeful? According to the bible, that is how God describes Himself. It’s written in the Ten Commandments that people want placed in public places everywhere! They believe that the only reason people do hurtful things is because they don’t subscribe to these scriptures. They want these values instilled in the schoolchildren everywhere! They say that not teaching these values is what is wrong with America/the World these days!

These teachings couldn’t be farther from the true, loving God that I have come to know. These teachings have nothing to do with kindness, compassion and the unconditional love and acceptance that God is. These teachings probably have more to do with the problems in this world than any other single worldly element. I know they have had more to do with my own pain and life gone astray .

The first leg of my journey took me to Buddhism. I learned that is not a typical religion, but a personal philosophy and spirituality that guides us through the paths of our lives. It was a little confusing to me, a strange concept that I still didn’t see a God in. Something kept telling me that there was more to it. It was closer though, because compassion and acceptance are the most important aspects of personal and spiritual peace - the one thing I crave most.

Then Gary Zukav started making guest appearances on the Oprah Winfrey show. He believes in a higher entity, but his ideas were a little confusing to me. The one thing I did get from him, however, is how to stop making decisions based on fear. I practiced his mantra often. I found that my levels of anger decreased a lot during that time. I was closer than I’d ever been to being an authentic human being. But I had a ways to go yet!

I love the horoscope. It was the most profound and relevant message I had ever received. I heard it and knew that I needed to have kindness and acceptance for myself if I were ever going to reach my goal. It was the hardest leap, though, and one I could couldn’t seem to make. I have suffered from chronic depression for most of my life. Once I had that taken care of it, I could see things in a different light. I really am not a waste of breathable air!

So here is what I know for sure. Nothing is an accident. Everything that happens is supposed to happen. We are not sinners doomed to be judged by an angry God. We are a part of God. A part that is important and necessary in this universe. A part with meaning and intent. We are here to experience this individual existence for a while. When we have experienced enough, and learned what we needed to learn, we will return to the whole, and feel the oneness we so crave.

I know that this is not a new idea. I know that the man called Jesus tried to teach this two millennia ago. I know that many humans have since repeated the message. The message is true, but sometimes the messengers are confused, or maybe they had a worldly intent. The message is definitely there, and some can definitely hear it. Some day we will all know it.

For now, I will continue on. I know that the path is before me, even if I cannot see it. I know that God guides me, even if I do not follow. I know that everything is going to be ok.


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