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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Snow Shoveling & Divine Manifestation

This morning, we woke to about five inches.  Snow, that is -- not a huge snowfall, but enough to require shoveling.  As I was out this morning, working in the driveway, I noticed something wonderful. When I shoveled, there would be some frozen residue on the concrete that the shovel did not clear away easily.  I thought I might need to do some tough scraping to remove the ice.  However, as I worked for a while on a patch of the driveway, then paused to look behind me, I noticed that the part I had already done was being further cleared and dried by the sunlight.  My efforts were combined with the radiation from the sun - and the driveway was being cleared.  As I observed this, I began to see it as a metaphor for how intention works in our lives.

As a Yoga teacher, I often talk about intention.  A yoga practice is a reflection of life, and when we wish to create something, we begin with intention.  Of course, setting intention is only the first step to manifesting.  In my modelling, there are three steps to create something new:

1) Set an intention;
2) Use your energy to make effort in the direction of the intention, and;
3) Let the divine universe work on your behalf; allow the outcome to happen.

In my experience, there are two myths floating around our western culture about the creative process.  The first is the traditional idea of do-it-yourself.  This myth says that, if you want to create something, you set a goal and then work hard to blast through all of the obstacles that might be in your way to meeting your goal.  This is the myth of the self-made man, the lone ranger.  My problem with this myth is that it ignores the power of the universe as a partner in creation.  It is possible to do many things on our own.  However, we are much more empowered when we open up to the infinite creativity of the universe itself.

The second myth is one promulgated by recent popular movies like The Secret.  This myth says that all we need do is set an goal, and hold this goal firmly in our thoughts until the outcome we want appears in our reality.  While I believe in the power of intention, I have two difficulties with this idea.  The first is that thought alone is not always enough to activate the universe towards our intention.  Thought is a powerful gift, but not that powerful.  We may get lucky and get what we want, or we may not.  The intention is the beginning of the process, not the end.

Additionally, I believe we are designed to be actively engaged in manifesting  our intentions.  Look at your physical body: what a wonderful gift.  This gift is given you so that you can DO things.  The body is designed to move, to manipulate objects in the world around us, and to engage.  We feel better when we are active, moving and working, than when we sit idle and wish for things to happen.  Our thoughts are given to us to empower us to do more than just set goals.  With our thoughts, we can plan, design and choose actions that will take us closer to our goals.

We are meant to be partners in the creative process.  The universe acts with us - and through us - to make things happen in this world.  Our actions, when inspired by intention for good, are works of the divine, since each of us is a manifestation of the divine source.

What's more, when we act in the direction of our intention, our actions act as a catalyst for divine action.  It is as if our actions demonstrate our commitment to the intention, and the universe responds.  The sun shines on the driveway, helping me in my work.

Of course, the outcome is not always exactly as we had planned.  The universe has its own plans.  Our intentions will manifest in a way that is in alignment with the divine evolution of the universe.  We need to allow the process to unfold in it's own way.  Our goals and intentions will be realized, and something more, something wonderful will blossom.

Want to create something new in this world?  Intention.  Action.  Allow the unfolding.

And, enjoy the sunshine.


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

To my blog readers

Hi Everyone

This is a special note to those of you who have been reading this blog.  As you have probably noticed, I have not posted for a couple of months.  During that time, my writing time has been spent preparing The Five Gifts for publication.  I'm happy to say that I have a publisher - Balboa Press - and that the book will be published soon.  I'm finished with writing, and the effort I need to put into getting the book published is reduced.  Of course, promoting the book - that's a whole new chapter.  

My intention now is to begin writing in this blog regularly, once again.  I thank you for your patience, and I look forward to your comments going forward.

One other note:  this past December, I included in this blog a post called "The Paradox of Our Time", which was sent to me as a writing by the Dalai Lama.  I posted it without researching it, and I regret that.  I have done some research, and have been unable to find any evidence that this was written by the Dalai Lama.  Indeed, I have read some troubling comments about the source of this work - though I have been unable to verify that, either.  So, I've removed this post from the blog.  My apologies for posting something without researching the source.  I will be more careful in the future.

Be well.  More to some, soon.