Archive for the ‘Florence Scovel Shinn’ Category

Time has a wonderful way of weeding out the trivial.  ~Richard Ben Sapi

Quite true, don’t you think?  This goes along with a question I have written on one of my homemade well being cards:

Will it matter in a year from now?

There are less than a handful of times I’ve come to that question and been able to answer – yes, it will matter.  Even then the truth is, circumstances will change and I will change.  I believe what Florence Scovel Shinn has written – only good lies before me.  Then, what’s the worry?!

So Beth, tell me, what IS the worry?  Hmmm, don’t have one anymore!

Thanks for listening to this quick little interaction in my head!  May all your troubles be small ones and if not, then may you know you are transformed by them.  Life will sometimes take us into the obscure, as yet to be defined or understood places.   Remember, though, the butterfly always emerges from the darkened chrysalis flying openly into the light.  When daybreak surfaces from the cloak of night, we are those butterflies.  And with a tiny flap of our wings, we send ripples of hope across the globe.

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I wrote this a year ago and as the new year approaches, its timeless wisdom bears repeating.  I wish I would have had this post handy when I went through a life altering event this year.  That one question: am I giving myself to a conclusion that is set against my true desire?, is golden.  I’ll let you all read on, and allow the context of it all take shape…

It’s a fresh new year stretching before us.  I’m not one to make New Year’s resolutions.  I began thinking about something else though and it’s timing just seems perfect for the new year.  All the little things that come up that get under our skin, bug us or in one way or another seem to draw us out of what felt like blissful alignment — to all of that — to simply stop and ask yourself this simple question:

Will it matter in a year from now?

I’m thinking just about 99.9% of everything you can resolutely say “no, it won’t matter in a year from now”.  Once you’ve determined that, you can drop it and just let it go.  Let it return to its “native nothingness”, as Florence Scovel Shinn once wrote, as it means nothing unless you assign it meaning.  It, whatever *it* is, is relatively meaningless and not worth your attention and certainly not worth your alignment.  When you get down to it, if you are willing to suffer less and be in alignment more then less and less is there any configuration of outer facts or conditions that can draw you out of alignment.  The more you step outside of your own suffering, step outside of the dream you are dreaming, the greater capacity you have to repeatedly step outside your own dream.

As for the other .1% or so that will matter a year from now, you won’t feel the same about it a year from now as you do today, as long as you are willing to suspend any judgment about what it means.  This means you don’t give yourself to conclusions that are at odds with what you really want.   You can check yourself at any time you’re feeling something unwanted by asking: am I giving myself to a conclusion that is set against my true desire?  This fosters a self rapport and an inner harmony that will carry you through even the toughest times in life.

Come to life with an open mind, an open heart and a willingness to let a wisdom greater than your own work through you.  It does so both visibly and invisibly every day.  Today is no exception, this year is no exception.  Solutions, answers, miracles happen in an instant and it all flows to us with ease when we let it. The “letting” is the key.

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Image Locale

Ever wonder where the repository is for all these things we are advised to “let go” of?  Is it in some remote location where the other half of long lost socks and gloves go?  I don’t know but I have pondered how it is that we actually do “let go” short of changing the subject — so I’ve come up with a process of sorts.

I encountered a meditation at the end of Sonia Choquette’s audio book, “Trust Your Vibes”.  There’s an instruction in it to let the part of you that calls itself “I” to move out of your right eye.  This would be the locally focused “I”.

I decided to adapt this and use it for all fears, judgments, perceptions, beliefs, any thoughts that are not in harmony with my highest good.  When a thought like this is felt, stop and release it, let it go, through the right eye.  My friend Ahmee suggested adding the words — “not real” as she releases it.  Another idea is to say — I release you and return you back to your “native nothingness”.  Native nothingness is a phrase used by Florence Scovel Shinn.  Saying “not real” is equivalent to I release you and return you back to your native nothingness, the latter is a little more disruptive of the dissonant thought.  I think anything that disrupts and disturbs a pattern, can help change it.

There’s also a grounding exercise that Sonia uses with one hand on the heart and one hand on the belly.  I decided to adapt this too with a small meditation that can be done at any time of the day, as many times as you would like to use it.  Right now I like to begin my day with this and then sprinkle it throughout the day.  It is one hand on heart and one hand on solar plexus or the upper part of your belly.  Take four slow, deep conscious breaths with the solar plexus expanding on the inhale and collapsing on the exhale while mentally repeating the words: allow Spirit to flow freely through me today.  Allow me to have thoughts that support my highest good today.  Add anything you feel called to say in this short meditation.

This breathing exercise of four conscious breaths, as instructed above, can be used at any time of the day without the hand on the heart, etc.  Feel yourself tightening up in the middle of a meeting, or in traffic, or at any time, stop and do those four, slow, full conscious breaths.  This will pull your awareness away from what isn’t serving you and summon a new and refreshing energy.

That’s it for today, just a few tips to help us all recall our way back to home base.  I’m attending a retreat in a few days based on Chinese face reading.  This is put on by Jean Haner, author of the Wisdom Of Your Face.  I would love to come back with more ideas to share with everyone.

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“I got sleepy while driving and pulled in under a tree at the side of the road.  Rolled up in the back seat and went to sleep.  How long?  Hours.  Darkness had come.

All of a sudden I was awake, and didn’t know who I was.  I’m fully conscious, but that doesn’t help.  Where am I?  WHO am I?  I am something that has just woken up in a back seat, throwing itself around in panic like a cat in a gunnysack.  Who am I?

After a long while my life comes back to me.  My name comes to me like an angel.  Outside the castle walls there is a trumpet blast (as in the Leonora Overture) and the footsteps that will save me come quickly quickly down the long staircase.  It’s me coming!  It’s me!

But it is impossible to forget the fifteen-second battle in the hell of nothingness, a few feet from a major highway where the cars slip past with their lights dimmed.”

The Name by Tomas Tranströmer from The Soul Is Here For Its Own Joy: Sacred Poems from Many Cultures

I found the above in a new book of poetry that arrived just yesterday.  While it’s not a poem, per se, I thought it was an interesting short read.  And for such a short read it really packs a powerful message.

I have seen my husband have this type of startled “who am I, where am I” response after being abruptly awakened.  I like how the author wrote out that he experienced 15 seconds in the hell of nothingness because it illustrates that all our hells are hells of nothingness, meaning they are of our own making.  The making of something out of nothing, which is not to trivialize it but only to illustrate our responsibility in requiring these hells of nothingness.  This is why Florence Scovel Shinn writes of letting things return to their “native nothingness”, from whence they all came.

I wonder now what would have happened, what different world might he have entered, if he awoke with not knowing who he was or where he was and met the moment with curiosity instead of fear.  What if I met more situations with curiosity?  In the Bible it is said: I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.  What if the Bible is really saying the kingdom of heaven is ours right now and its found within the open hearted curiousness of a child?  Become like little children — one who does not give themselves to a conclusion that is set against their very well being but one who can, at the very least, meet the moment with a sense of wonder and curiosity.

And maybe, just maybe, fairy tales like Alice in Wonderland, have more to teach us about life and living then we ever dreamed possible.

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A few weeks ago one of our cats, Angel, transitioned.  Then last week another one of our cats, Muffy, was missing.  I was upset, angry really, I was not going to lose two cats a few weeks apart.  And I was jumping to all sorts of conclusions about what had happened to him.  In this frame of mind, I went out canvassing the neighborhood with his picture, knocking on doors asking – had you seen him?  I crossed the street to a home on the edge of a cul de sac and walked up to the doorway.  As I rang the doorbell, a sign to my left caught my eye.  It read: Be still and know that I  AM.  I just sort of froze in the moment and really took in the meaning of that sign and the message I felt the Universe was conveying to me in the moment.  All my action oriented efforts from this place of resistance will not bring Muffy home.

I stopped knocking on doors and went home to take the message in literally.  I meditated for a little bit and then I went about my day in mindfulness practice. Fully present with everything I was doing no matter how trivial it was.  No more banging anything into place.  I had conceded as much before that there was very little the locally focused me could accomplish and even less when approached with a resistant stance.  Now I was walking the walk.  No knee-jerk reactive thoughts, just being in the moment.  All judgment and conclusions suspended, I was at rest in still waters.  It also helped that I’d been actively doing a mindfulness practice so that it was easy to return to when I had found myself floundering.

Muffy walked in the door a few hours later much to our glee!  He was a little skinnier than usual but otherwise unscathed.  We exchanged kisses.  He is our one cat who loves to kiss and we fed him lots of tuna.

Florence Scovel Shinn has written: my ship comes in over a calm sea.  Makes sense, doesn’t it?  I thank Universe/Field/Spirit for the reminder earlier in that day – Be still and know that I AM.  The Universe is continually in conversation with me; this time I was taking note and listening.

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The winds of grace blow all the time. All we need to do is set our sails.

~Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa~

It is such a relief to be reminded that as outer conditions don’t always seem to
swing into agreement in the ways I want them to, that there is Grace.  As Florence
Scovel Shinn once wrote, I am under Grace and not under Law.  I am reminded
again that I live under the umbrella of a Benevolent Universe.  The scales are
inescapably tipped in our favor.  And so, I set my sails with a deep surrender,
which is not to say I cease to have my desires, but is to say I make peace with
the way things are now.

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I cannot lose
anything that
belongs to me by
Divine Right.
I am under
grace and not
under law.

~Florence Scovel Shinn

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Abraham has decks of well being cards available.  I have used this
idea in the past and made up my own on 3 x 5 cards.  I have just
made up a new batch and share them with you today.

Believing in someone is a force for the good.

Be Still.
Breathe deep.
And know that I am God.

Close your eyes
Fall in love
Stay there

It’s just a chapter, it’s not the whole story.

I cast this burden on the Christ within and
I go free to be loving, harmonious and happy.

Choose ye this day whom ye shall serve –
fear or faith.

Is this consistent with who I choose to be?

The aim of practice is being in love
not the good stuff of being in love.

Who knows what’s good, what’s bad.

The Universe knows what it’s doing, I can
rest in that.

All kinds of things can happen, these doors open,
when we do.

We can never be free of something we are judging.

You are not willing to have what you want for some
good reason, until you are willing.

The ways and means are not your job, the Universe
will provide.

Do I really know this to be true?  (this one is excellent to
snap you out of any kind of feel bad story that you are locked into)

(Note on authors: Rumi authored the close your eyes one, Florence
Scovel Shinn did the cast your burden piece, a couple of these are
my own and generally the rest come from Philip Golabuk, founder
of The Field Center.  “Do I really know this to be true?” is a version
of question no. 2 in Byron Katie’s work: The Four Questions)

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Dontcha love google? I typed in my search box: who said Law of Attraction first?
And I got the answer on Wikipedia! I also ordered the book by Atkinson listed
below because I’ve got an Amazon.com habit that won’t quit. :) So you will
probably see some quotes out of that coming up in the next couple of weeks.
I’ve got two Thich Nhat Hanh books on the way also and you know I’ll be quoting
him, too! In the meantime, enjoy and my gratitude to google, Wikipedia, all the new
and old thought thinkers which includes all of us, I think :) and as always the Universe
for answering! Love, Bethie

The idea behind the Law of Attraction is not new. The concept can be found
in Hinduism and, due to the influence of Hinduism on Theosophy, it is mentioned
in early Theosophical texts, as well. In 1877, the term “Law of Attraction” was used
by Helena Blavatsky in her first book on esoteric mysteries, Isis Unveiled: Secrets
of the Ancient Wisdom Tradition. In 1902, a principle similar to the law of attraction,
but not named by that phrase, was mentioned in As a Man Thinketh by James
Allen (1864 – 1912). The title derives from the ancient Jewish Book of Proverbs,
chapter 23, verse 7: “As [a man] thinketh in his heart, so he is.”

In 1906, William Walker Atkinson (1862 – 1932) used the phrase in his New Thought
Movement book, Thought Vibration or the Law of Attraction in the Thought World.
Atkinson was the editor of New Thought magazine, a student of Hinduism, and the
author of more than 100 books on an assortment on religious, spiritual, and occult
topics. The following year, Elizabeth Towne, the editor of The Nautilus Magazine, a
Journal of New Thought, published Bruce MacLelland’s book Prosperity Through
Thought Force, in which he summarized the principle, stating “You are what you
think, not what you think you are.” The phrase “Law of Attraction” appeared in the
writings of the Theosophical authors William Quan Judge in 1915, and Annie Besant
in 1919.

By the mid 1900s and continuing into the early 2000s, various authors addressed
the topic under a range of terminology, such as positive thinking, “mental science”,
“pragmatic Christianity”, “New Thought”, “practical metaphysics”, Science of Mind” /
“Religious Science” and Divine Science. Among the mid 20th century authors
who used the term were Sri K. Parvathi Kumar (1942) and Alice Bailey (1942),
as well as Florence Scovel Shinn (1925).

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“…prepare for your blessing,
rejoice and give thanks and
it will come to pass.”

~The Writings of Florence Scovel Shinn~

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