FINDING LOVE WITHIN
It's October, so we start thinking about fall, and we are using the idea of the fall season as a symbol for us this month to FALL in love with - and have an ongoing love affair with -- Life, the Fullness and the Allness of Life Itself and all that that means.
To support and inspire this month's exploration, we are using a different poem each week from the Sufi poet Rumi. So, that's what we are doing - falling in love with life and being inspired by Rumi. Not a bad combination!
Before the specifics of today and the Rumi quote that inspired them - I want to share something else on this idea of falling in love with life.
Who recognizes the name Pam Grout? Author of E-Squared, a book of very cool experiments we can conduct to prove to ourselves how incredibly powerful our consciousness is.
In her newer book, E-Cubed, Grout writes about what she is calling "Worldview 2.0" -- a new and improved way of looking at the world. And here's the part about Worldview 2.0 that applies to our theme this month: "In Worldview 2.0, you'll quickly come to realize that life is meant to be approached with exuberance and joy, and that 'follow your bliss' is not an empty platitude for a bumper sticker, but rather a reasonable plan of action for your life. If that's not the way your life is playing out, then something . . . is messed up. If magic isn't happening to you on a daily basis - if you're not waking up every morning with passion and zest - you're living in a horror picture that you concocted to entertain yourself."a
That pretty much confirms our theme, doesn't it?!
I believe that we often have a chicken and egg relationship with life. Which comes first - being happy, being in love with life OR having the experiences in our lives that bring us happiness, having experiences that we love?
Our higher selves, our spiritual selves will say that we know that happiness / loving life is an inside job, that the outer world of conditions doesn't bring us happiness, that internal happiness has to come first.
We know this spiritually and intellectually, but it is rare that I sit with someone who is grieving because they aren't internally happy. 99.9% of the time, they are sitting with me bereft because some outer condition is making them deeply, profoundly, unhappy. We all do this, don't we? We let our outer conditions control how happy or unhappy we are.
Knowing the "correct" answer to this chicken and egg riddle doesn't mean we live it! But let me give you a real example of how it actually works. And this example comes from E-Cubed.
Pam Grout's previous book, E-Squared came out in early 2013. Here's a little known, interesting fact, she actually wrote it, and published it under a different name, nine years ago.
But, here's a curious thing, instead of being an immediate hit like Grout assumed it would, to quote her, it "took a nosedive into the great sea of literary has-beens, quickly going out of print."
She said, "I waved a white flag, got busy writing three travel books for National Geographic, and didn't spend too much time obsessing. OK, a little bit of time."b
Then a few years ago, she decided to try again, so she dusted the book off, gave it a new title, and sent it to Hay House. And this time, the book became an international sensation.
Isn't that interesting? Essentially the same book, just with a different title.
Why did one "trip on the way to the dance floor and the other waltz off into international stardom" to quote Grout?
She gave three reasons:
1. The title E-Squared may have been a tad more compelling that God Doesn't Have Bad Hair Days;
2. The timing was better -- consciousness has evolved - the Secret came out right at the time the first version came out;
3. but she believes that the most important variable was that her vibration had changed; in those nine years, she had upgraded her consciousness.
Just like Hans and Franz from Saturday Night Life, she said to her joy channels, "I'm going to pump you up." She got rid of a lot of negativity that was clogging the flow.
She writes in E-Cubed: ". . . I [had become] committed to living in constant joy [another way of saying being in love with life]. I began noticing all the blessings in my life. . . . And as I became [internally] happy, my external world, which is nothing but the projector of my internal thoughts, began showing a different picture. In retrospect, I should have seen it coming."c
FINDING LOVE WITHIN
As we connect with the Source of Happiness within us, we become magnets for experiences in our lives that enhance our joy!
So how do we connect? That is where we will go today and Rumi inspires us in these words:
"You were born with potential. You were born with goodness and trust. You were born with ideals and dreams. You were born with greatness. You were born with wings. You are not meant for crawling, so don't. You have wings. Learn to use them and fly."d
Here's a recent Note from the Universe: "Wasn't it clever of me to think you up? I mean, come on... Never has there walked the face of the earth someone who thinks with your degree of insight. Who loves with your degree of care. Or who feels with your degree of hope. And never has there been such a need for someone with gifts like yours, because at this very moment there are people only you can reach and differences only you can make. Your #1 fan, The Universe"e
Today, our conversation is around being willing to recognize and express our own greatness, which is how we connect with our internal "I love life" meter!
When we find our diamond necklace or when we learn we weren't meant for crawling, but actually have wings to fly, we find the love of life within!
The Truth is: You are unique. Nobody in the world has quite the mix of your perspective, your sense of humor, your skills and abilities and your potential. No one can be YOU as well as you can be you. You are an original, the likes of which the world has never before seen.
There is a story of a good Jewish rabbi who dies and goes to heaven. While reviewing his life he explains to God that he had tried to be as wise as Solomon, as steadfast as David, and as brave as Moses. "That is all good," replies God, "but why didn't you try to be yourself?"
I know with this set up it sounds like I am going to now move into talking about living your purpose . . . but I'm not!
Rather, I want to share with you an idea for connecting with that unique and wonderful self that you are and it's called the triangle of a fully expressed life.
In order for us to be fully expressed, we must have a rich and robust experience of each of the points on the triangle and then there is something that holds the triangle together like glue.
The top point of the triangle is our inner guidance system.
Our inherent wisdom. Our connection with Divine Intelligence. It is ours to connect with, trust and use!
You might remember the story from the scripture of one who was considered very, very wise. This is in 1 Kings 3:7-27:
Now two women who were harlots came to the king, and stood before him. And one woman said, "O my lord, this woman and I dwell in the same house; and I gave birth while she was in the house. Then it happened, the third day after I had given birth, that this woman also gave birth. And we were together; no one was with us in the house, except the two of us in the house. And this woman's son died in the night, because she lay on him. So she arose in the middle of the night and took my son from my side, while my maidservant slept, and laid him in her bosom, and laid her dead child in my bosom. And when I rose in the morning to nurse my son, there he was, dead. But when I had examined him in the morning, indeed, he was not my son whom I had borne. Then the other woman said, "No! But the living one is my son, and the dead one is your son." And the first woman said, "No! But the dead one is your son, and the living one is my son." Thus they spoke before the king.
Then the king said, "Bring me a sword." So they brought a sword before the king. And the king said, "Divide the living child in two, and give half to one, and half to the other."
Then the woman whose son was living spoke to the king, for she yearned with compassion for her son; and she said, "O my lord, give her the living child, and by no means kill him!" But the other said, "Let him be neither mine nor hers, but divide him."
So the king answered and said, "Give the first woman the living child, and by no means kill him; she is his mother."f
That is wisdom! (INTERESTING ASIDE: In 1 Kings where this story is relayed, we learn that because Solomon asked for wisdom, he got everything -- seek ye first the kingdom and all things shall be added unto you!)
Happy and free are those who find wisdom . . .
She is more precious than jewels,
and nothing you desire can compare to her . . .
Her ways are ways of pleasantness,
and all her paths are peace . . .
Get wisdom, get insight; do not forget!g
The right bottom point of our triangle speaks to love, heart, compassion.
Emma Curtis Hopkins in Scientific Christian Mental Practice, wrote: "Love is the highest name of God. Love is the fulfilling of the law. At the height of our spiritual teachings we find God covering us with love. . . . It is well to say that God is unbounded, unlimited love. God is our love. There is an instinctive seeking of all things for love. Love is another name for life. Love is God. . . . The heights and depths and splendors of love have not been told. It is the name of God . . . Love is not something which comes to us in any one man, woman or child and then goes away. That is only the sign of love. Love, that is God, is eternal, infinite."h
First for self! Then for others.
* PERSONAL EMPOWERMENT
The final point of the triangle is personal empowerment.
Marianne Williamson: "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, "Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous?" Actually who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same and as we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others."i
Claim your personal power. What is right for you? What is not right for you? You have a right to proclaim it!
And the glue that holds the points of the triangle together is the empowering energy of gratitude.
Remember the words of Pam Grout, when she said that the biggest difference between the lack of success of the first version of E-Squared and the wild successful version was that she turned up her joy meter and she started looking for blessings in her life!
For 40 days leading up to Thanksgiving, beginning on October 18, you get to do the same thing, with 40 Days of Gratitude. Did you receive a journal when you arrived? If not, be sure to pick one up in the foyer after service.
Ernest Holmes in This Thing Called You, wrote: ". . . . we can desecrate but never lose the divine spark. It is always there. . . . your spirit already is perfect, an individualized center in the consciousness of God. God has made you out of Himself. The only material He had was the Substance of His own being. The only mind He had to implant was His Mind. The only spirit He had to impart was His own Spirit."j
If there is only one thing you know, know this!
aPam Grout E-Cubed
bPam Grout E-Cubed p 11
cPam Grout E-Cubed
f1 Kings 3:7-27
gEssential Spirituality, Dr. Robert Walsh p. 211
hEmma Curtis Hopkins Scientific Christian Mental Practice, p. 26
jErnest Holmes in This Thing Called You, pg. 7