What’s with all the F***ing Happy People?

So many spiritual people emphasize gratitude, I know myself as well have endorsed it. Like a great commercial with sunsets and flying birds and little children skipping and singing and a woman says ” I am so grateful for …. it makes me feel wonderful and I can enjoy everything life has to offer, blah blah blah.” Just like the many prescription drugs available, we can have whatever  reality we want based on a concoction of chemicals. We can buy whatever we want, thinking it will give us happiness, but its as fleeting as a chocolate bar. One minute its there,  next minute we ate it. Gone, forever. Anyways, I don’t want to get too emotional or carried away with my happiness affair with chocolate, we have some important things to cover. Here we go!

5017b02967349f20897b69f47b5de287 Gratitude is a beautiful emotion but for some its very eluding. When down in the dumps, depressed or just plain enraged with life, its pretty damn hard to feel gratitude. Why is that? Well, we cant see what we don’t feel. The darker emotions tend to carry a heavy frequency, which also means its harder to move out of it, and harder to see truth through it.  Its like swimming in water, your in it, until you get out and even then your still soaking wet. It takes a while for it to dry off. Once the darker emotions pass then we can feel lighter and brighter. However, because its lighter it means it can easily be missed, its very subtle and it needs awareness to be maintained. Thats why if something bad happens its easier to get in the dumps than to maintain the happiness. Why am I telling you this? Because, by knowing that different emotions carry different frequencies we can focus on creating awareness and paying attention to the more subtle energies in life. As we do this, we cultivate peace, happiness and joy. Which are all higher frequencies. Gratitude is also an expression of a very high frequency and it is when we feel connected to life around us. It is when we actually SEE life.

I went to watch the sunrise this morning and as I was staring out to the ocean and watching the sun come up, I had an insight. I have heard the saying many times before and its funny how we can hear it, and even say it but until we have that ‘Aha’ moment its really just shallow. As I was having my own mini commercial about how great life was, I realized that ‘ everything is a gift’. It all comes from the Divine Mother, and like a mother she cares for us deeply. She gives us everything relentlessly. She loves us!! SOOO Freaking much. She is the mother that cant wait for your phone call. She is the mother that sends you money when you totally messed up. She is the mother that will give you whatever you want because she wants to see you happy. She sacrifices herself for you.

You are her life, blood and bones. You are made of her and she cherishes you. You are here because of her. This life is truly a gift and as quickly as it was given, it can be taken away. All of it. Nothing is yours. Everything was given to you. For a short time on earth, your body is yours, your house may be yours, your clothes is yours. But it can be stolen, it can be lost, it can be taken. Nothing is yours and that is the illusion. 

Our unhappiness comes from attachments to nouns; people, places and things. We think because we have paid with something it is ours. But we are never satisfied. We are empty. When we buy something for ourselves, its good. But when someone gives us something as a gift. We cherish is, we keep it for years even if we don’t like it.. like an ugly sweater. But because it was a gift we give it more meaning, it becomes significant. It became a material symbol of the heart, its significance becomes deeper than face value. 3b2444b38c5efac72da00fc1c22f7b67

We get so attached to our things, to our people, to our friends, to our family. But we forget, they are not ours. In addition to them not being ours, they are a gift and when we stop seeing them as a gift, we lose gratitude, we loose appreciation. How many times are you present with the people you love? How many times do you act with them as though this is possibly the last time you will ever see them? Not much… usually we are so caught up in our own shit that we do not even realize we are not here. We are not giving each other our greatest gift, our presence. This is how we form regret. Because, people are a gift and they will not alway be around. One day, the Great Mother will take them back and we will be left with our memories. But will they be full ? Or Empty? e71a9bad1abcdb028997f63071046598

I urge you to feel life in a different way. To really see life as a gift, because we are only borrowing. We are only having a brief experience of human existence and it is fleeting.

Tell your family you love them, kiss that person you love with all of the feeling in your bones. Take a breath as though it was your last, savour it. Walk on the earth with eyes open that this is what I am made up of, all the food I eat comes from here and to here I will return. And reflect on the age old saying “money can’t buy happiness”. Because life is the ultimate gift and it was given to you, not bought.

Cherish every moment, it is so precious, it is a gift.

 

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Yoga + Essential Oils- How to enhance your Practice

How to Enhance Your Yoga Practice with
Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils
By: Allison Petroski

Essential oils and plants have been a part of spiritual practices since the beginning of time. Frankincense and myrrh, for example, have a long standing history in ancient traditions such as Ayurveda, Chinese Medicine, and African healing. They are mentioned repeatedly in the Bible and were used in ancient Greece and Egypt. The medicinal benefits of therapeutic grade essential oils are limitless, but what I find to be one of the most fascinating qualities is that they carry their own, often very elevated, frequency, which can greatly improve your physical, emotional, and spiritual well being. Therapeutic essential oils have the highest known electromagnetic frequency in any natural substance known to man. Starting at 52 MHz they escalate up to 320MHz, which is what pure rose oil resonates at. When you combine these highly charged oils with yoga and meditation, your practice can be greatly enhanced.

Therapeutic grade essential oils can be applied topically or inhaled to increase energy, relaxation, and focus, or to decrease stress and deepen meditation. This applies only to therapeutic grade oils, which only make up 2% of the oils available on the market. It does not include the oils found in health food stores and perfumeries, despite the claims of purity found on many labels. In this article I am referring to Young Living Essential Oils. Both Yoga Journal and yoga master Rodney Yee are working with Young Living to educate people on the power of therapeutic grade essential oils.

When therapeutic grade essential oils are inhaled the miniscule molecules travel up the nasal passages, into the lungs, and into the blood stream, oxygenating the blood. The aromatic molecules of the oils also reach the amygdala, a component of the limbic system where emotion, instinct, memory and vital functions are controlled. Oils high in certain chemical constituents can reprogram cells and stimulate emotional release. Below is a brief outline of suggested ways to implement essential oils into your practice.

Oils and Yoga
Before Practice-
Start by diffusing your favorite oils in the air with a cool-air diffuser. Lemon, peppermint, and/or lavender will purify the air and enhance physical stamina, while decreasing stress. These will also keep your studio germ free as lemon and peppermint are anti-viral, anti-microbial, and anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal.

Balance your chakras and ground yourself-
Place a few drops of lavender on your sacrum and on the bottom of your feet to bring harmony to your chakras. Rosemary opens the chakras. Sandalwood harmonizes and balances the emotions and enhances meditation by opening the third eye. Vetiver and Cedarwood are very grounding.

Pranayama, Meditation, and Yoga-
Place a few drops of frankincense in the center of your palms and rub them together. Cup your hands over your nose and inhale deeply for several breaths. Place a drop over your third eye and at the base of your skull to increase focus to these two powerful energy points. You can also rub a few drops at the base of your nostrils for continual inhalation. Frankincense and sandalwood are both very high in sesquiterpenes, a chemical constituent which aides in removing negative programming and increases oxygen to the pineal and pituitary glands providing a deeper meditation.

Inhaling peppermint oil is also very invigorating and will open the nasal passages and lungs for a very clear breathing experience, allowing more oxygen into the blood stream. Use peppermint sparingly and before the other oils, as it is a strong oil that will overpower the lighter scents of frankincense and sandalwood. On its own it is wonderfully soothing to any digestive issues, headaches, and muscle aches.

Any of these oils will greatly enhance breathing techniques. After you have finished your breathing exercises you can add more oil to any of the spots that were mentioned, and continue on with your meditation or yoga practice. You cannot overdose on therapeutic essential oils- so keep putting them on!

Essential Oils and Chakras
Frankincense, sandalwood, and lavender are three oils that are both grounding and highly spiritual. All three can be used on any of the energy centers for balancing, clearing, and enhancing the qualities of the individual chakra.

After Your Practice-
Lavender and peppermint oils may help alleviate muscle soreness and tension. Due to the regenerative nature of essential oils, applying them during and after your practice will help keep your muscles and joints limber and provide the ability to heal faster if any damage does occur.

I have touched on just a few ways that essential oils can elevate your frequency and improve your spiritual practice. Once you begin exploring the realm of essential oils yourself, you will discover the unlimited potential of nature’s living energy.

Who am I?

Who am I?

Who is this ‘I’ which constantly changes and evolves. Who is this ‘I’ which can observe and witness itself?

My “I” has changed. Recently, undergoing a rebirth,  a change in perspective and a letting go of old outdated belief systems. It has been a continual process like that of a growing seed that multiplies cell by cell until it is a fully blossoming flower, slowly changing with great results.

I am no longer the person I used to be. I am that I am. I am nothing more and nothing less. I am the observer, the witness. I am not my judgements, beliefs or experiences. These are all passing and changing and truth is that which never ebbs or sways. My identification rests with the quiet stillness, the place of consciousness that is like a still lake on a quiet evening. Calm and beautiful, peaceful and harmonious. From this place, my senses interact, yet the ‘ I am’ is not effected.

My ego is still present. It tries to limit, sabotage and protect itself. When it remains observed it looses its power. The soul becomes stronger and the guidance of truth becomes clearer. Destiny becomes inevitable as one surrenders to the flow of life.

The process of blooming to ones highest self continues, for the highest self is infinite. The journey is forever unfolding and that is the beauty of life, the beauty of existence.

Burning Man… 10 Burning Self Lessons

It amazes me the creativity of the human spirit and what can be made when there are no limitations. I witnessed this at Burning Man and the lessons I learned in the Nevada desert were deeper than I initially recognized.
I expected it to be a party, a celebration of people coming together to express their individuality and to have experiences that were fit for another planet. Of course there was that, but that was just the surface; And just like a calm ocean, there is so much below the surface.

Burning Man is not only a social experiment, it is a way to burn away all of the social constructs we have meshed into our brains. It is a way to burn away that which no longer serves us and it has the potential to burn us awake if we allow it to.

I witnessed emotions of sadness, loneliness, euphoria, love, expression,passion, depression, fear and freedom. The reason there was such an extreme was because this gathering has been created to create a place where all is possible and you can do basically anything you want, really… When there is no one telling you how to act, to dress, to feel, think and be ( only your conditioned mental patterns, if you allow them to influence you); then you get a touch of that place within you that knows what freedom is.. and wow does it feel amazing.

Here are some of the things I learned from Burning it all away…

1) Creativity
When you don’t have structure your able to flow:
– No one has cellphones and many don’t have watches so you do what you feel when you feel like it. When nothing is structured in your day and your able to pick and choose what you do, magic happens. You flow with the present moment and go wherever that takes you. Perhaps you end up at a workshop, a dance off, a party or in the deep playa. Yet you are exactly where you need to be at that moment.

2) Synchronicity…
– When you follow the flow, magic happens. When you do what you want and follow your heart the universe offers it to you. Its a common knowledge that if you ask for it at burning man it will generally show up either instantly or days later.

3) Joy…
There is so many amazing things happening at every moment, so you don’t spend time doing anything you don’t want too…
– There are hundreds of activities happening at one time and so if you don’t like something you move, do something else, join a new group of people etc. If your not feeling it, it is socially acceptable to move on and people understand that at Burning Man. Your able to tap into what it feels like TO REALLY WANT TO DO SOMETHING. Which is funny because many of us have been just accepting our circumstances for such a long time that we forgot what it feels like to actually want to be doing something versus just doing it.

4) Connection..
– There are thousands of beautiful people at burning man and you will have amazing connections with so many of them. Some you will have life changing conversations with and never see again. Some you will connect with after when returning to the default world. It is a reflection of the impermanence of relationships and how our connections come and go, yet it happens at a much faster pace in the dusty clay of the desert. As well, you realize you can connect with anyone, and anyone and everyone can be a best friend, there is no such thing as strangers!

5) Responsibility
– A principle of B-man is that you cannot leave a trace, what you come with you must leave with and I realized this teaches accountability and responsibility. So often in society we blame others, we blame the government and we never take responsibility for what is going on. Like the bystander effect we stand frozen, but when our own survival depends on ourselves we become EMPOWERED. No one owns our choices, we do and we can choose to step up or we can choose to bow down. Learned helplessness is rampant in society and I think its time we take the lesson of no trace and clean up our own mess without expecting someone else too.

6) Support
– As we are responsible for everything, we become empowered and with that stand to help others. If someone fell or if there was fight, immediately people would run over to stop it because they didn’t expect anyone else too. Additionally, people were so full of love and everyone was there to support one another whether they be friends, strangers or new lovers.

There is an illusion that we are Separate and alone on this planet. However, we are all supporting one another and everyone wants each other to succeed. Even if their egos wont admit it.

7) Individuality
– People would dress as they pleased, even if that was being naked. Some how people got more beautiful as days passed. I realized that as the days went on and people got in touch with that inner child it didn’t matter if they hadn’t showered for a weak, had 2 day old body paint on or ripped clothes.. their eyes shined with their own spirit. Something had been awakened.

8) Impermanence:
– The only permanence is change and what the artists create for months or even years to offer at burning man is burned during the gathering. When a wooden structure that is as big as a 100 ft building or even bigger burns it makes an impression. It really wakes you up to the fact that what was once strong will inevitably wither away when its time. Even Black Rock City ( 77,000 people) is constructed and then a week later is gone…
I cried when I saw the structure called ’embrace’ burn. I witnessed and released my past relationships and my attachment to love. Recognizing that all relationships come and go and what was once consumed with the passion of fire will become ash at some point in time. It was a sensitive but a crucial moment for me.
When the main structure- The man burned I witnessed myself burning. Seeing that we too are on fire and are constantly burning, using energy and consuming till our deaths. We are beautiful examples of Impermanence and yet we ignore it because we are afraid to think of our end. But when we can to accept it we can rise above it and make our lives more meaningful and worthwhile.

9) Insight..
– In the dust, intense dry heat all that you have been avoiding becomes obvious. In normal day to day life we are busy with our jobs and providing for ourselves. Stress consumes us, however, at burning man you have everything and there is nothing to worry about, it is a place of enjoyment, amusement and so all your patterns become obvious. If you find you are restless, anxious, anti social, lonely etc it is something to reflect on and think about. Additionally, relationships which were not on stable ground will be shaken and the truth will be exposed.

10) Listen..
– Your body and your intuition know more than you think. Our best teacher is ourselves. Yet, we always get in the way and say its not true. But when we listen we start riding a flow of authenticity. If your body is tired, rest… If your spirit is telling you to move on… move. Its that simple.

Burningman was chaotic, beautiful and peaceful. It was a representation of all that exists in life. It was rajas, tamas and awe inspiringly sattvic.

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Believe

The sun rises and sets, with each glorious day that unfolds we are given a gift to explore and make our wildest dreams come true. From the depths of the forests that house ingenuity and pure expression, we too can bring our creativity forward to create a life that has not only been breathed but has fulfilled its potential to be a masterpiece. We all have something special to offer and it is by finding the perfections in the imperfections that we come to accept who we truly are. As humans we have the ability to create and like vines that intertwine we can choose the connections we make that will lead us to rise or to fall. We choose what trail we wish to take and it is up to us as we gaze at the opportunities which road we want. We can take the easy path or the hard path. It’s not the destination that’s important, we are all going to the same place but it’s the journey of how we get there. From the tests and trails of character, we may end up bruised and broken but it’s the will of the human spirit that keeps going after the dead end that makes someone amount to greatness. There is no end, just another way, a continuous cycle of interchanging roads and it is up to our work of life (art) how we will proceed. Don’t give up, don’t accept “no” as an answer, you can do it. You have to believe, because if you don’t believe in your own dreams how can you expect anyone else too? Be so convincing that it’s a fact and that which was only a dream will become material. Do what makes your heart pump with excitement that makes your eyes wide and washes away any form of being jaded. See the extraordinary in the ordinary and life will never be dull. It’s all here and now, your potential is here and now. In a seed rests a forest. You can create whatever you believe you can. So aim high, for the only limits you have are the ones you impose and accept for yourself.

Believe

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