Breath.

I am recovering from being ill for the last week. At the highest point of my symptoms, it was hard to breathe. Either, I was lacking full lung capacity, or it would feel painful to try to draw in a full breath. It was difficult. It was scary at times. And it reminded me just how important breath is to us.

For obvious reasons, breath is important to sustain life of our bodies. Even though we are often not aware of it, our body knows what to do, every hour of every day, to keep us going. Our heart beats. Our lungs breathe, in and out.

Yet, when we become conscious and present to our breath, it holds great magic. It reminds us of our Oneness with all that is. How? It slows down the body system. It renders the mind quiet, even briefly, because we cannot focus on our breaths, one at a time, and think thoughts at the same time.

Having a practice of stillness, quiet, and peace, whether that be yoga, meditation, listening to music, or simply a few deep breaths, helps me every morning, to begin the day without the chatter that my mind usually provides. It reminds me that Now is all there ever is, and that the more present that I am able to be throughout the day, the more peaceful I will remain.

Breath is our most available, most useful tool to remind us of our Oneness and our ability to Be Here Now.

I Am Spirit.

I Am Spirit.

Spirit I Am.

I was reminded of this truth this morning, as I sat quietly, listening to this lesson from A Course in Miracles. This morning, I really needed the reminder.

Like most humans, I can become enamored with the darkness, the realities of life and the world in which we live. I become discouraged. I feel hopeless.

For me, these are moments of when I seem most in touch with my own humanness, and not my essence, the deepest truth. I lose touch with the knowing that I Am Spirit.

When I feel this discouraged and dark, I do my best to not build upon that story in my head. I do my best to not look for “proof” in the world that I see, to prove how discouraging, dark, and hopeless the world is. That is what I mean when I say that I become enamored with the darkness. I want to prove to myself that darkness is all I see, and that darkness is all that exists for me.

Then, I remember to breathe, breathe consciously and presently, one breath at a time. I remember to read, or to listen to, that which inspires me, and reminds me of the truth. I don’t do these things to talk myself out of what I am feeling. I read and breathe and listen, in order to clear out the clouds that are blocking the light of my essence. Clouds that I have put there by getting lost in my thoughts, and believing the form of the world is all there is.

And, the clouds part. I feel less enamored by the dark, and more ready to welcome in, or rather, to remember that the Light is right here, within and all around me.

I remember, that which is the deepest truth, the only Truth, for all of us.

I Am Spirit.

Spirit I Am.

Gifts.

This time of year, I feel more magic and love in the air. Although I am a believer in the holiday spirit being around all year long, it is particularly felt right now. Lights, sounds, snow.

Gifts.

Gifts and what they represent have changed throughout the last few years of my life. I always love giving gifts, and also love receiving gifts. But, many times in the past, my gifts have been tainted, unaware as I was at the time, with expectation, guilt, tradition, or the need to express love with things. I am not condemning that in myself, but see where much of what gifts represented to me before, no longer hold true.

To me, gifts are meant to be shared with others, yet they don’t have to be the ones that get wrapped up and put under a tree or in a stocking. Sure, those are super fun also, and I still appreciate those offerings. Yet, gifts of time, love, presence are all more rich, deep, and meaningful for me at this stage of the game. And, those are gifts that we get to not only share with others, but to offer to ourselves as often as possible.

The gift that is my richest, most abundant gift that I get to offer to myself, and to others, as often as I can remember, is Peace. It is a loftier gift than even Peace on Earth, because that isn’t possible without first, cultivating Peace within.

When I remember to cultivate my own inner Peace, I can be more present, more available, more loving to every person, every being that I encounter. Especially when the world around me seems more chaotic and uncertain than ever, Peace within is what helps me to manage. To cope. To be as compassionate with myself and others as possible.

When I offer myself Peace, I can’t help but offer it to you. So, in this moment, on this day, from my heart to yours-

I offer you Peace.

The Wind.

I listen to the wind, the wind of my soul

where I’ll end up I think only God really knows- Cat Stevens

The wind. Unseen yet there, always there. At times a whisper of a breeze, other times with the mighty force of a cyclone.

I have deep, abiding honor for the wind. It no longer frightens me.

It moves me along. It blows out that which is no longer needed, even if I don’t know that I no longer need it.

It shows me direction.

When I listen, when I feel it on me, I trust that I am being guided.

All is well.

Grief, redefined.

Grief has not been unfamiliar to me in my life. Most often, the word grief has come to mind after the death of a loved one. The feelings of sadness, emptiness and despair seemed to be prevalent. I felt wounded, and then it would seem to take a long time for the wound to feel healed, at least healed enough to move forward.

Grief feels different to me at this point in my awakening consciousness. I still feel sadness, I still feel a sense of loss. Yet, instead of it feeling like a wound, it feels like a space, a space left where that beloved being once resided. When I am less grounded in time, I don’t stay in the past that does not exist. I can be here, Now, more consistently. The home of my vibrantly alive peace.

The beauty about space, is that it is infinite, ever expansive.