The Difference Between Happiness and Bliss

For sugar, Happiness is dissolving itself in coffee or tea, sharing itself with another form.

For sugar, Bliss is going within and tasting its own sweetness!

For human beings, Happiness is dissolving his ego, sharing himself with another through Love.

For human beings, Bliss is going within and tasting his own Divine Love!

Waking Pains

Think about getting up in the morning. Is it pleasant?

Not usually, but it isn’t the end of the world either.

To be clear, spiritual awakening is not physically painful, but it can be very emotionally and mentally taxing. During the awakening process your consciousness begins to expand, which brings into view certain behaviors of yours that up until then you were trying to keep hidden from yourself.

Discovering one new fault after another can be pretty hard, especially if you are the type to judge and shame yourself.

Also all sorts of things start to happen in your body once healing begins. Appetites change, sleep patterns change, desires change, relationships change. All this change at once can be uncomfortable at times.

The hardest part for me is humility. It seems that everyday I have to learn again to forgive, see another fault, correct another unloving habit, admit that I was wrong, improve my sympathy. When I first tried to love unconditionally I found out pretty quick that I suck at it. That was a blow to my ego.

Ego loses it’s authority in a spiritual awakening. This is never fun.

So yes, it is painful, but growth always is. It helps me to keep in mind that it isn’t forever, and at the end I’ll be all the stronger for it!

Meditation Bliss

The whole idea of spiritual blissfulness had me looking for some kind of spiritual masturbation during meditation; an experience where my whole body feels orgasmic or ecstatic.

It took a large dose of humility to admit to myself that this kind of blissfulness is not what the spiritual journey is all about.

One way to understand blissfulness is to learn how to be sincerely excited and joyous with absolutely nothing. Let me explain.

My son loves Starbursts. Everything he eats is now compared to Starbursts. If I give him a sweet and juicy kiwi, he spits it out saying it is too bitter. He has set his baseline very high regarding the sensation of sweet.

One day Timmy will grow tired of Starbursts. In order to learn how to enjoy subtler flavors he would have to reset his “sweet baseline” back to zero. That takes some time, and some self-denial. Once that is done, then even potatoes can be sweet in a way that Starbursts just cannot be.

In life, we set our “joy baseline” very high. Every joy or pleasure you experience is now compared to the greatest pleasure you have experienced so far. If you are used to buying whatever you want without worrying about the cost, then you have lost the subtler joys of working hard to achieve what you want, for example.

One day you may grow tired of your high standard for joy and pleasure, and you may want to reset your “joy/pleasure baseline” back to zero. That will take some time, and some self-denial. Once that is done, then joy, no matter how much of a punch it packs, can be found everywhere, in every moment, and in huge abundance!

One more analogy: if you don’t like your mom’s cooking, eat nothing but oatmeal for 30 days. Perhaps her meatloaf will taste differently once you finally have a meal that doesn’t taste like bland oatmeal, and what a treat it is!

Having a delicate palate in food or in life’s pleasures reduces your enjoyment’s availability.

The intensity of a joy or pleasure does not make up for our need for a variety of joys and pleasures. Contrast is the spice of life!

The Universal Success

Life’s greatest achievement, meaning the best thing that life has ever made, is you.

Just take moment, see what a wondrous thing you are. See that you are beautifully made.

Understand the complexities of your systems, the strength of your mind, the harmony of your systems. There is nothing about you that does not scream “perfection”.

So congratulations, life worked for billions of years to prepare this day for you. Everyday a new canvas. It’s your move!

Soul Cleansing

Perhaps you already know, but cleansing your soul is the single most loving and powerful act of service you can perform for the well being of all life on Earth or anywhere. Please don’t underestimate its power and potential. It is what you came here to do. Not much else matters in comparison.

To be clear, your actions are not going to do anything. Soul cleansing is a long “grace-shower”. Your actions are about removing all obstacles to grace (aka energy, light, love, God…) so it may do its work in you.

1 Daily meditation (15 minutes minimum, 60 minutes maximum).

2 ”A Course in Miracles”, is a great place to start.

3 Practice humility, kindness, and generosity.

4 Stop telling life what to do.

5 Stop telling life what it is, begin letting life tell you who you are.

6 Stop saying “no” to requests made of you (your mind will scream bloody murder, do it anyway.)

7 Forgive every “offense” immediately.

8 Enjoy serving others.

9 Seek peace, not pleasure. Peace feels a lot like boredom, get to be good friends with it!

10 Turn your judgment of others into a mirror to your soul. Whatever you see wrong in others is actually what is going on within you.

11 Be aware of your actions as though someone else were doing them.

12 Detach yourself from achieving outcomes in anything you do.

13 Set your intention for the day before the day begins.

14 Show gratitude deeply. Keep a gratitude journal.

15 Make a habit of listening. Instead of adding your story, ask a question about what the other person just said.

16 Make a habit of noticing what you admire in others. Tell them. Don’t be embarrassed.

17 Eat well.

18 Sleep well.

19 Give up “knowing” everything you do not actually know. (Which is almost everything). When you become honest about this there is a great release of false knowledge.

20 Learn to say “ I don’t know” when you don’t know.

21 Give up shaming yourself. It’s a lie. No part of you is vile.

22 Challenge all of your assumptions.

23 Allow emotions to be present in you. They can’t harm you, they need to be heard.

24 Steer clear of negativity, distance yourself from news and TV for a while.

25 Learn to hear your intuition. Learn to trust it and always act upon your intuition. Give up the mind as the dictator of decision making for you.

26 Welcome each new moment into your presence. Let each one deliver its love, joy, and kindness to you, whom it serves.

27 Know deeply that all things are here to help you.

28 Be generous with your time and money, others might need it more than you do.

29 Return to your imagination, remember how to day dream.

30 Relearn how to play. Find your innocence.

31 Spend as much time playing with children as possible.

32 Let depression be the sensation of God’s loving hand upon you! God makes a terrible first impression, but so would anyone trying to take heroine from the addict. The soul is addicted to the drugs of false idols. Taking them away so the soul can heal feels like depression. Learn to celebrate that feeling as progress, and know that you will not feel that way forever.

There are probably 1,000 more things to mention. Pick one of these that made your heart leap (or your mind fear) and do just that all day, everyday. You’ll see real miraculous changes in yourself within weeks, if not days. What you put into it is what you get out.

Open Minds Think Alike

An open mind:

1 Listens

2 Asks questions

3 Shows genuine interest

4 Seeks clarification

5 Withholds judgment

6 Looks beyond bias

7 Forgives ignorance

8 Seeks common ground

9 Supports another’s idea

10 Accepts and holds many perspectives on one idea

11 Does not assume another person’s intentions

12 Responds with kindness, patience, and love

Lessons Learned

In all my time meditating the most important thing that I have learned which can be conveyed in words is also the only thing that will ever matter; Divine Love found within.

There are two ways to draw Divine Love out from your heart; meditation and imitation.

The first, a devotion to meditation, will bring a genuine seeker to an expansion of consciousness, which brings about “right seeing”, that is, learning to perceive life without the lens of “self”. This “right seeing” cultivates gratitude, which in turn engenders a deep humility making space for Divine Love to enter.

Those that follow this path find and enjoy living in Divine Love ahead of those that do not follow this path, but not for long!

The second way to draw Divine Love from your heart is imitation.

A growing number of seekers embodying Divine Love elucidate and practice this new Love for all to see, assisting others to easily discover and embody this same Love through imitation, saving them the struggle of their own exploration.

Gone are the days of the occasional guru or the exceptional saint. Today awakens a generation of Divine Beings that demonstrate and expose the qualities, nature, behavior, character, practice, expression, observance, conduct, direction, and wielding, of Divine Love for all to see and learn.

Seeing Divine Love practiced sincerely, freely, and liberally, immediately reveals the absence of that Love in our own hearts, and irresistibly invites all who witness it to bring forth its light from their own hearts.

Some say Jazz was born in 1895 when Buddy Bolden started his first band. Once people began to feel the energy of this soulful music, new Jazz practitioners were able to discover and live inside this new musicality through assimilation and imitation.

One could say that Buddy Bolden was a Jazz guru, the medium through which the energy of Jazz was channeled for all to see and hear, expediting its circulation and growth through imitation. This is exactly what I believe is happening today regarding Divine Love in our world.

Love, like Jazz, is not an invention. It’s alive. It grows, it dies, it evolves and matures. Each of us is made to be a practitioner of Divine Love. Like blood circulating life to the extremities of the body, Divine Love breathes the holy life of God into the collective human body to which we all belong.

To see Divine Love radiating from the heart of an awakened Being is becoming more and more prevalent and commonplace, and it is to see a portrayal of your future self.

Once the “new melody” of Divine Love is intoned for all to hear, it’s echo is not far behind.

Thank You Seekers

I want to say thank you. Thank you for your inner work, it is not only a blessing for you but for all the world through you. I know it is hard, so thank you.

Old joys have seemed to suddenly disappear, haven’t they? What brought so much delight in the past now feels like a mouthful of sawdust. What brought passion and purpose feels like dead skin. All meaning and desire has faded like a soda can bleached by the sun.

You can truly say, “Everything is gone. I have nothing.” To me this means that you are only one step away from an important realization: “I deserve nothing, I am nothing”. Once this realization has settled into your heart and mind in a manner that fully accepts it, then gratitude can enter. The feeling “I deserve nothing” comes into direct opposition with the obvious fact that you have everything you need! And gratitude grows from there.

Once gratitude gets a rather strong hold on you, an off-shoot of gratitude begins to sprout; humility. Humility brings service, and service leads to love, and love invites unconditional love, which is Divine Love, the fruit of all this gardening!

Old joys have past but only to make room for the new. Tarzan swinging from vine to vine must know how to easily let go of the old vine to take hold of the new, and for a moment, he hangs between both worlds, suspended. This can be terrifying or exhilarating, however you choose to see it.

The Divine joys of love are subtly enjoyed by the spirit, but only if the loud pleasures of the body are tempered first!

Truth Seeker

I started seeking truth when I was a child. I loved God and life. I grew up Catholic, and I stopped seeking when I found answers, well, my family found them for me. I lived as a Catholic for 32 years before I began seeking again.

Pain, depression, despair, anxiety, guilt, and shame is what triggered my seeking.

I began seeking by committing myself to a mental hospital for two weeks, I was suicidal and out of control angry. After being stabilized mentally and emotionally, and with a heavy dose of antidepressants, I returned to the hospital where I began an 8 week out-patient program doing Dialectical Behavior Therapy. I had to apply for short term disability to attend.

I began meditating 3–7 hours a day (way too much), I saw a therapist twice a week for two years, I struggled with my life and work, I read every book I could get a hold of, I stopped blaming people for my problems and feelings, I took a long hard look at myself and almost died of self hatred.

In the midst of all this strife, I found myself in Winter Park Colorado, staying at a friend’s ski condo for the week. Alone, I wandered town.

Not knowing what to do with myself, I plopped down in a booth at a pizza joint. I put my head in my hands and cried for a long time. No one noticed, I wasn’t making a scene, people were about their business. I had no answers, only pain.

I wiped my tears from my face, stood up, took a breath, and then another. I had made a decision; the pain I was fighting to get rid of was now welcome to stay. I decided that suffering was optional because healing is possible, and all that pain was only the emotional and mental wounds crying out to me for my loving attention. Once they each got loved, they could not hurt anymore.

The key to spiritual growth is to run towards the pain. How insane is that! But it’s the only thing that worked for me, and the pain is only for a little while. Soon the pain heals, the anxiety quells, the fear subsides.

Once healed, the Love lessons began. The spiritual medicine during this phase is as simple as it is potent; humility. The whole point of healing was to make the heart feel safe enough to open and function again. That’s no easy task, but once the heart opens, what joy, what bliss!

The love lessons are hard, they are relentless to ego, devastating to greed, and fatal to pride. My lessons continue today and everyday. I am not perfect, but my intention to love IS perfect. I see every fault of mine as clear as day. Accepting that is humility. Now there’s more space for love to enter.

Meditation Regimen

Meditation is a gift to you, but for the world. You receive it, but it’s not for you. It’s for everyone else!

It is the greatest act of Love that is available to mankind at this stage of our spiritual evolution. Know that when you meditate, you are serving God and all creation.

When I first began meditating I found it useful to set a time early in the morning, typically an hour before or after sunrise, to do my meditation. It was really hard at first! I hit the snooze button for weeks before I finally got up the first time.

I tried my best to be faithful to doing it at the same time every day. I started with only twenty minutes of meditation, and over time worked my way to an hour, but I noticed that anything more than an hour started to loose quality.

At first getting up earlier was really hard, but the more I got into the meditation I seemed to need less sleep. Over time, for whatever reason, it got easier to get up, and soon I reached a point where I was waking up before the alarm disappointed that it wasn’t yet time to get up.

When it comes to starting anything there’s no way around it, one really has to have a strong will power, one has to commit to do a meditation every day for at least a month.

Initially the following attitude was what helped me most: “I’m going to meditate the rest of my life, so there’s no need to rush seeing results. I eat every day, I don’t have to remember or motivate myself, it’s just what I do. I sleep every night, I don’t have to remember or motivate myself, it’s just what I do. Meditation is no different than eating or sleeping now. It’s just something I’ll do the rest of my life no matter what.”

This kind of attitude takes the pressure off to see results. It really helps avoid frustration.

Results take time of course. Just like going to the gym, you can’t try it once and claim it doesn’t work. Of course it works, it’s just up to you to stick with it. But it takes time, and time takes patience, and patience takes effort, and effort means sacrifice.

I always thought it was funny that meditation is essentially doing nothing, but it took me monumental amounts of energy and effort to begin meditating!

If you try to do meditation every day and you find that you just can’t seem to make it happen, perhaps it’s a good idea to start preparing for your meditations throughout the day.

By quieting your life, you will find it easier to quiet your mind. What I mean by quieting your life is to consider following a more rigorous moral standard so as to quiet your conscience. Stop lying, cussing, joking at others expense, judging, gossiping, allowing anger to control you. In short, be more kind.

This way you don’t spend your meditation time worrying about things you’ve done wrong, or the projects that you haven’t done, or the responsibilities that that have gone unfulfilled, or the people you may have hurt.

Quieting your exterior life helps you to go inward. Meditation should not feel like work, it should feel more like play, exploration, discovery, even healing!

To summarize, to begin a meditation regimen one needs, will power, preparation, and patience.

Happy meditating!