Category: Trust



Based on “A Course in Miracles,” bestselling author, Marianne Williamson gives a live talk every Monday in Los Angeles (also available via Livestream anywhere in the world) to teach the principles of “miracle mindedness.” During a talk in late July, she focused on trusting others.

“To the extent to which our thought system is based on fear, or non-miraculous thinking, we bind ourselves to the experience of the world of scarcity and death,” she said. “As we shift our thinking from fear to love, we literally shift into a place where a process of divine intercession — a thought system beyond our own, an actual celestial order of love and harmony — then enters into our experience of this world. Because we transform our thinking, we can transform the effect that thinking has caused.”

“A Course in Miracles” tells us we are perfect, and the core belief and thought within that miracle-minded thought system is the recognition of that perfections, Williamson shared with the audience. However, because the Course tells us we are all connected, meaning there is really only one of us existing in this world, we cannot recognize the perfection of our spiritual being unless we are willing to recognize it in another.

Quoting Lesson 181 from “A Course in Miracles,” Williamson read: “Trusting your brothers is essential to establishing and holding up your faith in your ability to transcend doubt and lack of sure conviction in yourself.”

Trust is a big issue for many people, but only if we trust others can we actually trust ourselves, because any thought we have about another is a thought about ourselves, she said.

“If I think lovingly about you, that is an act of self-care, because I myself will feel ultimately more nourished as I am willing to think more lovingly about you. If I think attack thoughts about you, ‘A Course in Miracles’ says, a sword is dropping over their head and in the realm of reality where there is not time and space, a sword is dropping on me as well.”

Additionally, if we hold the thought and belief that people cannot be trusted, the Course teaches we create what we defend against, so our subconscious mind will set things up in such a way that we will create it. People make mistakes, and we make mistakes, but the question is what we choose to focus on.

“A Course in Miracles” states: “Perception has a focus. It is this that gives consistency to what you see. Change but this focus, and what you behold will change accordingly. Your vision will shift, to give support to the intent which has replaced the one you held before.”

While the ego mind intends to focus on the guilt of another, the spirit within wants to focus on their innocence, Williamson said. We can make a choice to shift our perception in any moment.

“The ego will use your mistakes as evidence for why you deserve it and the spirit in me chooses to extend my perception beyond what the bodies eyes reveal to what the spiritual eye revels, which is the truth in you,” she explained. “I can choose what I intend to see, and when we choose to see the innocence in another person, the Course says this is an act of self-interest, and a gentle reinterpretation of the world. And when we gently reinterpret into miracle mindedness, we see all human behavior as either love, which obviously calls for love to be returned, or as a call for love. In the moment we behave like jerks, the spirit is saying ‘I’m trapped in here. Love me. Because if you condemn me in this place, I’m only going to be worse.’”

marianne-Faith in Sinlessness

Quoting from Lesson 181, Williamson said: “Remove your focus on your brother’s sins and you experience the peace that comes from faith in sinlessness. This faith in sinlessness receives its own sure support from what you see in others past their sins. For their mistakes if focused on are witnesses to sins in you. And you will not transcend their sight and see the sinlessness that lies beyond.”

The Course views sins as errors or mistakes to be corrected. But if we limit our focus to the errors of others, we are also binding ourselves to our own errors, she said. Since the level of our errors is not truly who we are, we cannot feel comfortable I our own skin. The only way we can escape our own feelings of self-hatred is to be willing to have faith in the sinlessness of another.

“This is why ‘A Course in Miracles’ says heaven — which is an awareness of our oneness, and the inner peace that comes from that, not later but in this moment — is entered two by two,” she shared. “I cannot get into heaven unless I am willing to take you there with me. If I am binding you to your guilt, I cannot escape feeling the hell of feeling guilt myself.”

The course says we achieve so little because we have undisciplined minds. Just as we exercise our bodies and discipline our muscles, we must do the same for our minds, Williamson said. The ego can take over, or we can instruct our mind and say, “These attach thoughts only hurt me. I am willing to be miracle minded here.”

“Miracle mindedness in any moment is our willingness in any moment to align our thinking with the will of God. We have been trained to look at the world as ‘Do I want to serve the will of God, or do I want to be happy and I can get what I really need?’ and this is ego-oriented,” Williamson noted. “In any moment, when our goal is the perception of sinlessness, then our goal is to rest in heave — meaning our awareness of our oneness, meaning the place we can be happy, meaning the palce where people want to get along with us, meaning the celestial order where our highest good is already programmed.”

For more from Marianne Williamson, and to sign up for her Free Monday Night Livestream, visit http://www.marianne.com.

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Published on Oct 18, 2016

Trusting Our Hearts – Trust in Our Basic Goodness
~ Tara Brach (04/06/2016)

Trust in our basic goodness directly effects our capacity for intimacy with others, creativity and living fully. This talk explores the ways that our caregivers and culture undermine that trust, primarily by giving us messages that we are “not enough” or flawed. We then explore the meditation practices that remind us of our loving hearts, and of the goodness that expresses through others. This remembrance is what nourishes a liberating quality of trust in ourselves and in our life.


Published on Oct 28, 2015

Trusting Ourselves, Trusting Life (10/07/2015)

How can we trust in basic goodness when we encounter so much greed and violence within and around us? This talk explores three pathways of practice that enable us to bring a healing attention to our primitive survival conditioning, and cultivate the heart and awareness that express our full potential and deepest essence.

“Who would you be if you trusted the basic goodness and beauty that lives through you?”

In Thrive, Arianna Huffington makes an impassioned and compelling case for the need to redefine what it means to be successful in today’s world.

Arianna Huffington’s personal wake-up call came in the form of a broken cheekbone and a nasty gash over her eye — the result of a fall brought on by exhaustion and lack of sleep. As the co-founder and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group — one of the fastest growing media companies in the world — celebrated as one of the world’s most influential women, and gracing the covers of magazines, she was, by any traditional measure, extraordinarily successful. Yet as she found herself going from brain MRI to CAT scan to echo cardiogram, to find out if there was any underlying medical problem beyond exhaustion, she wondered is this really what success feels like?

As more and more people are coming to realize, there is far more to living a truly successful life than just earning a bigger salary and capturing a corner office. Our relentless pursuit of the two traditional metrics of success — money and power — has led to an epidemic of burnout and stress-related illnesses, and an erosion in the quality of our relationships, family life, and, ironically, our careers. In being connected to the world 24/7, we’re losing our connection to what truly matters. Our current definition of success is, as Thrive shows, literally killing us. We need a new way forward.

In a commencement address Arianna gave at Smith College in the spring of 2013, she likened our drive for money and power to two legs of a three-legged stool. They may hold us up temporarily, but sooner or later we’re going to topple over. We need a third leg — a third metric for defining success — to truly thrive. That third metric, she writes in Thrive, includes our well-being, our ability to draw on our intuition and inner wisdom, our sense of wonder, and our capacity for compassion and giving. As Arianna points out, our eulogies celebrate our lives very differently from the way society defines success. They don’t commemorate our long hours in the office, our promotions, or our sterling PowerPoint presentations as we relentlessly raced to climb up the career ladder. They are not about our resumes — they are about cherished memories, shared adventures, small kindnesses and acts of generosity, lifelong passions, and the things that made us laugh.

In this deeply personal book, Arianna talks candidly about her own challenges with managing time and prioritizing the demands of a career and raising two daughters — of juggling business deadlines and family crises, a harried dance that led to her collapse and to her “aha moment.” Drawing on the latest groundbreaking research and scientific findings in the fields of psychology, sports, sleep, and physiology that show the profound and transformative effects of meditation, mindfulness, unplugging, and giving, Arianna shows us the way to a revolution in our culture, our thinking, our workplace, and our lives.

Arianna Huffington is the chair, president, and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, a nationally syndicated columnist, and author of fourteen books. In May 2005, she launched The Huffington Post, a news and blog site that quickly became one of the most widely-read, linked to, and frequently-cited media brands on the Internet. In 2012, the site won a Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. In 2013, she was named to the Forbes Most Powerful Women list. In 2006, and again in 2011, she was named to the Time 100, Time Magazine’s list of the world’s 100 most influential people. Originally from Greece, she moved to England when she was 16 and graduated from Cambridge University with an M.A. in economics. At 21, she became president of the famed debating society, the Cambridge Union. She serves on several boards, including EL PAÍS, PRISA, the Center for Public Integrity, and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Her 14th book, Thrive: The Third Metric to Redefining Success and Creating a Life of Well-Being, Wisdom, and Wonder will be published by Crown in March 2014.

The Third Metric Special Session With Arianna Huffington – The One Young World Summit 2013

Arianna Huffington argues for the need to redefine success beyond money and power to include well-being, wisdom, the capacity for wonder and the ability to give back in this Special Session at the One Young World Summit 2013.

The One Young World Summit 2013 took place in Johannesburg, South Africa. The Summit brought together 1,250 young leaders from 190 countries to debate and devise solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems.

The Third Metric: Arianna Huffington

Arianna Huffington shares why it is vital we begin to redefine success beyond money and power.

‘I wish I could show you,
when you are lonely, when you are in darkness……
the astonishing light of your own being’
HAFIZ

All non-dual teachings remind us that we are already ‘That’. The depth of our being is God, eternal pristine awareness. Yet there is a world of difference between knowing this conceptually, and genuinely experiencing for ourselves the indestructible presence that lives us.

How can we let direct experience of our true nature genuinely open up?
The most direct route I know is the practice of defenselessness. It is the means by which we can get out of our own way, and let the web of our ego patterns unwind. For many years I grappled with this, understanding that surrender was the quintessential task. I would meditate earnestly to quiet my mind, try to remember who I really was, and pray – offering up the more difficult aspects of my personality caught up in some story of separation, usually triggered by a relational twirk. Sometimes my agitation would dissolve into the deeper ocean of grace, other times I would feel like a cat chasing its own tail. That’s because the one trying to surrender was the one in the way.

I was introduced to defenselessness through the workbook lesson in ACIM, ‘in my defenselessness my safety lies’. I sensed there was something pivotal about this invitation that seemed to turn 180 degrees on its head the belief that we must defend ourselves from danger within and without. Yet it was only after the spontaneous surrender that occurred in the cave of Ramana Maharshi did I understand the true power of this teaching. How defenselessness exposes our illusions and reveals the indestructible nature of who we truly are.

The power of nothing:
The instruction I heard in that cave of deep silence was all about nothingness. Nothing to be, do, get, become, seek for, relinquish, just be as you are, rest in God. By grace, the story of ‘me’ was rendered defenseless and it disappeared. Then a whole new dimension of space and silent presence opened up. This was far more than just a momentary spiritual orgasm. Its wisdom has continued unfolding in the years afterwards, revealing a very practical method for awakening that I practice and share with people daily. Defenselessness shows us how to relax the protective tendencies that we accrue through our lifetime that buffer us from the direct contact with our true nature.

If we genuinely do not try to get anything, reject anything or become anything, there really is nothing for our ego to do. Nothing to fight with or against. No victim, no victimizer, no self and other. No world. At first this feels dis-orientating. Then a host of awkward feelings often arise, sometimes fear, hopelessness, not knowing what to do. We feel dis-armed, and although this is the point when our ego typically would raise the red flag to distract attention onto something else, spiritually speaking, this is when we strike gold. If we just stay present, soft and open, defenses start dissolving and we will pass through the vulnerability they were built to protect in the first place. If we can allow this and not engage a story about who we are because of it, a natural unwinding of our armour begins. We meet more directly what we were trying to guard against. If we can just meet that avoidance purely, just as feeling, as body sensation, as subtle energy, the experience naturally dissolves, and we land deeper in a more essential aspect of our being.

Defenseless with what?
I am not suggesting that you try to practice defenselessness when crossing a busy city street, or when faced with a situation that might be asking you to stand up for yourself. Defenselessness is not to be confused with collapsing, being a doormat or shying away from speaking a difficult truth (with as much mindfulness as we can). A true spiritual path is not about wafting about in some pastel vapour.

Defenselessness is an inner practice. It shows us how to be present and un-armoured with our self first, so that we more substantially retrieve deeper wisdom. It asks for the humility to loosen our idealized self-image, our ideas of who we think we should be or would like to be, to just meet ourselves wherever we are, warts, jewels and all. Just meeting the truth of our own experience without defense, whatever that happens to be, trusting that the truth always brings some form of liberation. This helps us to be more available to grace, more real with ourselves and with the ones we love. Supports us in wiser action. Defenselessness exposes what truly is.

Understanding our Defenses:
It is important to view our defenses from a compassionate lens, because we all develop them for a good reason. Our survival instinct forms defenses from the moment we first experienced ourselves separate from the infinity of pure being. As infants this feels like being separate from the love we needed, the holding, the safety. Disconnected from the strength, the peace, the contact, the freedom. Of course the more enlightened and attuned our parents were, the more graceful this can be, but it the self-forgetting is a natural and unavoidable part of human development. It is not a mistake nor is it wrong.

When we are young and dependent, this dis-connection from the essential ground of what we truly are, feels like our needs are being denied. It can feel like being tied and bound in hell. It is incredibly stressful to our young nervous system, that cannot fully self soothe until around the age of seven. We don’t yet have the capacity to understand that the reasons why are not being responded to precisely the way we need, may not be because of anything we have done. With each moment of dis-connection from the love and support we needed, a mind-body and spirit contraction happens and we lose a little more contact with the grace at our core. To shut down and cut off from experiences that feel too much, feels like the only power we have.

Mud covering the jewel of your being:
With each layer of defensive contraction, beliefs are formed about what the world is and who we are. These beliefs are unconscious and begin forming our view on reality. This gives rise to our sense of identity, setting in motion patterns that shape our life. Each contraction and its defensive reaction acts like a layer of mud over the exquisite jewel of our being. By the time we reach adolescence, we are usually set in our defensive patterns of responding, and are reacting our way through life. Forgetting completely that the infinite grace of the universe is living us, we start polishing the outer surface of the mud, trying to shape it into something appealing, lovable, something that will get a positive result from the world. It seems to work somewhat for a while.

At some point in our life, a crack appears in this carefully manicured personality structure we have formed. If we are lucky, this ego piercing happens earlier than later. Usually some unexpected turn of life’s wheel initiates the crack – like the loss of a cherished love affair, death of someone close to us, an accident or illness, or losing our status or career. However this happens for us, our familiar ways of holding and knowing ourselves are de-stabilized. We feel helpless, vulnerable and deficient – just as a young child. We often feel angry about our plight and look for someone to blame. This is a further layer of defense. Spiritually speaking, this crack appearing is extremely good news, if we can muster the maturity to turn within and practice defenselessness in a moment like this. Not to rush to patch up the crack and re-polish the ego veneer, but to peer into the crack and see what might be underneath.

The fear to look within:
Much of my work involves sitting with people in soul friendship, encouraging them to be present and defenselessness in a moment like this, harnessing it as a portal to liberation. To welcome the experience of deficiency, vulnerability, not knowing what to do, and to genuinely let it be. To lean into it (like diving through a wave of the ocean) with willingness to really see what it really is.

So often, our habits of closure are held together by assumptions that have not been fully questioned. We confuse feelings with facts. Just as it is ineffective to re-assure a young child there are no scary monsters poised to pounce in the dark of the bedroom when the lights go out, just mentally telling ourselves there is nothing to fear doesn’t work. What truly helps is to turn the light on and patiently support the child to look everywhere they believed the menacing presence lurked. To look long enough for the child to discover through their own direct experience, that what they feared does not exist. We cannot skip this step.

Common to virtually everyone I share this practice with across cultures and religions is a very hidden fear that at the core of our being lies something bad, deficient, empty, not good enough, flawed. Turn within enough and at some point we all hit this. Its what makes us most want to run back up to the surface. Christianity made a whole religion out of this and named it ‘original sin’. Really, it is the ego’s primary state of deficiency. Often we feel ashamed about it, or frightened of it, and so suppress it deep into the unconscious. It feels like a huge problem, but spiritually it is perhaps the most important gateway into freedom there is. What appears to be the defect of our character is actually the most direct portal through. The Japanese value of ‘wabi-sabi’ understands this. The chip on the ceramic vase rendering it imperfect, is central to its beauty. The petals falling in a seeming mess off the roses, create spontaneous art on the table.

The gateway of deficiency:
When we directly contact our sense of deficiency – of being empty, rotten, not good enough, it feels that to expose it would cause us to be swallowed up by it, never to escape. Let others really in to see this, and it would be confirmed by rejection. We believe we are the only ones with this guilty secret and conclude that we must have done something bad to be experiencing this. Yet if we can just rest undefended with this sense of deficiency, this feeling dis-connected itself, we taste a very important truth – that our ego IS deficient. It can’t do anything but imitate the real thing. We find ourselves asked again to just be nothing, do nothing, get nothing, become nothing, seek for nothing, relinquish nothing, just be as we are, rest in God.

At first it feels very counter-intuitive to soften our defenses and courageously open into what a lifetime of conditioning suggests we protect against. This is what makes spiritual awakening feel like being asked to go towards death. All of our fears really come down to this. Fear that we will not exist in the way we know ourselves. Fear we will have no control in the unknown. Could we meet even this and not protect, not cleave to some spiritual concept even, not leave? That is the nexus of deep transformation.

Reflect on something in your life that recently triggered a defensive reaction. Firstly, refuse to judge yourself for the fact this arose. Instead, be curious about what feelings your defense was attempting to push away or protect from. Sit with this question deeply for about 20 minutes:

‘What don’t I want to feel?’
Every defense is a protection against feeling something. Could you open into it and see what it really is deeper than your thoughts? Sometimes it feels like we will die, melt down or go crazy if we let ourselves fully feel rage, terror, loneliness, grief, valuelessness, hopelessness, nothingness, despair. This is coming from a very young place inside that could not handle the intensity of such experiences. Yet if we can stay in the present, take in the loving support of the universe, and just open to the energy, the direct bodily sensations of the experience without telling the story about it, something very magical happens. We realize that our fear was just a gargoyle on the gate to the inner sanctuary.

Complete Allowing:
To practice defenselessness with our self amidst our most vulnerable places is such an expression of love. To be absolutely present, not abandoning ourselves, and yet totally welcoming of whatever comes provides the fresh air for our soul. Just resting in being, things open up in the way we truly need. Your soul knows the way and a question like this (for 20 minutes) helps that way be found:

‘What’s it like to allow your experience completely?’
Ramana Maharshi said that enlightenment is not really a change but a shift of attention. This question shifts our attention to the opposite of defending. Allowing is a non-doing practice. Ceasing to interfere or control or even try to guide ourselves. It is something we can learn to let our ego habits relax.

What happens when we truly rest undefended is a mysterious process and it is slightly different every time. We are no longer in charge and that is the point. Finally we are humble and in this, grace becomes dynamic within our being – showing us what might need to be seen or done, perhaps appearing as guidance or perhaps revealing in direct experience a deeper taste of who we truly are. It is no longer in our hands. We are undefended, and powerfully open to the mystery. The inner teacher is liberated and we find ourselves resting more deeply in the vast ocean of indestructible being.

Miranda Macpherson ‘Be Nothing Do Nothing Get Nothing Become Nothing’ Interview by Renate McNay

Published on May 14, 2014

Miranda Macpherson ‘Be Nothing Do Nothing Get Nothing Become Nothing’ Interview by Renate McNay

View Here on her book ” Boundless Love: Transforming Your Life with Grace and Inspiration


Published on Mar 8, 2014

An Eckhart Tolle TV excerpt in response to a moving question about regaining trust, Eckhart offers a powerful talk on awakening to our depths and becoming “fully human” through the process.

True Belonging – Part 1A
We all have a longing to belong. When pursued at the egoic level–often through our good-personhood projects–there may be temporary satisfaction but our sense of separation is ultimately reinforced. In contrast, bringing mindfulness and compassion to whatever is arising dissolves the sense of separation and reveals the basic goodness of our own loving presence.

True Belonging – Part 1B

Publication Date: October 2013

Beyond the Here & Now is an account of how we have come to be where we are now, in the modern era. In explaining the things that have not served us well we can uncover how to put them right in order, if we choose, to bring about a way of experiencing this world, and each other, as never before. No need for great blind leaps of faith or trickery, as the book demonstrates, everything we need is already at hand. We must now apply what we inherently know and this book explains how.
Lucy O’Hagan resides in Co. Wicklow, Ireland occupying a senior post with the Health Services Executive. She has traveled extensively expanding her knowledge and practical application of many Eastern philosophical teachings and healing practices. Marrying these experiences with her background and qualifications in Western allopathic medical fields has allowed Lucy to share the resulting wisdoms with others.

Click here to browse inside.

An internationally acclaimed theologian and member of the Dominican Order, Matthew Fox was forbidden to teach by then Cardinal Ratzinger in 1988 and was later dismissed from the order.

His experiences make him uniquely qualified to write about Pope Benedict XVI. Fox delivers a blistering indictment of Ratzinger, from his early career to his years as chief Inquisitor, from his protection of reactionary groups like Opus Dei to his role in covering up the pedophilia crisis. But Fox also sets forth his vision for a new Catholicism–one that is truly universal and celebrates critical thinking, diversity, and justice.

Click Here to browse the contents.

360 Vision – Heretic Interview with Matthew Fox

Interview with Matthew Fox, the foremost exponent of “Creation Spirituality,” a movement that seeks to revitalize Christianity by embracing mysticism, feminism, social justice, ecological awareness and the shamanic traditions of indigenous peoples. Fox, an outspoken American priest and theologian, explains his controversial spiritual philosophy.

A New Pope and “The Most Corrupt Vatican Since the Borgias”

Matthew Fox (former Catholic priest) discusses the Vatican’s work with the CIA and it’s alliance with far right political forces and Pope Francis’ opposition to liberation theology in Latin America.

“No longer indispensable, no longer assured of our old carefully crafted identities, no longer beautiful in the way we were at twenty or thirty or forty, we are hungry and searching nonetheless.”

From the author of The Gift of an Ordinary Day, this intimate memoir of loss, self-discovery, and growth will resonate deeply with any woman who has ever mourned the passage of time, questioned her own purpose, or wondered, “Do I have what it takes to create something new in my life?”

With the candor and warmth that have endeared her to readers, Kenison reflects on the inevitable changes wrought by time: the death of a dear friend, children leaving home, recognition of her own physical vulnerability, and surprising shifts in her marriage. She finds solace in the notion that midlife is also a time of unprecedented opportunity for growth as old roles and responsibilities fall away, and unanticipated possibilities appear on the horizon.

More a spiritual journey than a physical one, Kenison’s beautifully crafted exploration begins and ends with a home, a life, a marriage. But this metamorphosis proves as demanding as any trek or pilgrimage to distant lands-it will guide and inspire every woman who finds herself asking “What now?”

Katrina Kenison is the author of The Gift of an Ordinary Day and Mitten Strings for God: Reflections for Mothers in a Hurry. She has appeared on Oprah, as well as other shows. Her writing has appeared in O, Real Simple, Family Circle, Redbook, Better Homes and Gardens, Health,and other publications. From 1990 until 2006, Kenison was the series editor of The Best American Short Stories, published annually by Houghton Mifflin. She co-edited, with John Updike, The Best American Short Stories of the Century (Houghton Mifflin, 2000). She wrote, with Rolf Gates, Meditations from the Mat: Daily Reflections on the Path of Yoga (Random House, 2002).

Click here to browse inside

An Excerpt from “Magical Journey” by Katrina Kenison

MAGICAL JOURNEY, a memoir by Katrina Kenison about her search for purpose, meaning, and joy in the midst of loss and change, has been called “warm and wise, soul-searching” (Kirkus Reviews). More an account of a spiritual journey than a physical one, MAGICAL JOURNEY explores the belief that even as old identities are outgrown, new ones begin to beckon, inspiring readers to summon their courage to heed the call.

This short film features an excerpt from the book, in which the author receives a powerful and life-affirming letter, sent to her by her own true self. Available wherever books are sold, and to order at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound. Visit Katrina at http://katrinakenison.com

Teach me to trust these things
so that I may enter my Sacred Space
and love beyond my fear,
and thus Walk in Balance
with the passing of each glorious Sun.

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