Daily Om ~ Finding Deep Strength

amethyst geode sliceWe have all faced moments in our lives when the pressure mounts beyond what we feel we can handle, and we find ourselves thinking that we do not have the strength to carry on. Sometimes we have just gotten through a major obstacle or illness only to find another one waiting for us the moment we finally catch our breath. Sometimes we endure one loss after another, wondering when we will get a break from life’s travails. It does not seem fair or right that life should demand more of us when we feel we have given all we can, but sometimes this is the way life works.

When we look back on our lives, we see that we have survived many trials and surmounted many obstacles, often to our own amazement. In each of those instances, we had to break through our ideas about how much we can handle and go deeper into our hidden reserves. The thought that we do not have the strength to handle what is before us can be likened to the hard surface of a frozen lake. It appears to be an impenetrable fact, but when we break through it, we find that a deep well of energy and inspiration was trapped beneath that icy barrier the whole time. Sometimes we break through by cutting a hole into our resistance with our willpower, and sometimes we melt the ice with compassion for our predicament and ourselves. Either way, each time we break through, we reach a new understanding of the strength we store within ourselves.

When we find ourselves up against that frozen barrier of thinking we cannot handle our situation, we may find that the kindest choice is to love ourselves and our resistance too. We can simply accept that we are overwhelmed, exhausted, and stretched, and we can offer ourselves loving kindness and compassion. If we can extend to ourselves the unconditional warmth of a mother’s love, before we know it, the ice will begin to break.

Source: Daily Om

Daily Om ~ Where the Soul Is

ledaThere will likely be times in your life when your soul evolves more quickly than your circumstances. Your subconscious mind may be ready to move forward long before you recognize that you are destined to embrace a new way of life. Your soul intuitively understands that changing habitats can be a vital part of the growth process and that there may be one part of you that is eager to move to another home, another state, or another plane of existence. But the ties that bind you to your current mode of being can make moving into this next stage of your life more challenging than it has to be. If you find it difficult to move on, consider that just as people in your life may come and go, your role in others’ lives may also be temporary. And many of the conditions that at first seemed favorable served you for a short time. When you are ready to match your situation to your soul, you will find that you feel a new sense of harmony and increasingly connected to the ebb and flow of the universe.

Moving on can be defined in numerous ways. Your forward momentum may take you from your current locale to a place you instinctively know will be more nurturing, comfortable, and spiritually enriching. Once you arrive, your misgivings will vanish, and you will know that you have found a sanctuary. Similarly, subtle changes in your values, goals, or emotional needs can motivate you to distance yourself from one group of people in order to reassociate yourself with individuals that are better able to support you. For example, this could mean moving away from your birth family in order to find your energetic or spiritual family. The route you need to travel may not always be clear; you may feel inspired to change yet be unsure as to why or how. Clarity may come in the form of a question if you are willing to seriously ask yourself where your soul is trying to take you.

In a way, moving from one point to another when you feel strongly driven to do so is a way of bringing your spiritual and earthly energies together. It is a two-step process that involves not only letting go but also reconnecting. You will know you have found your destination, physical or otherwise, when you feel in your heart that you have been reborn into a life that is just the right shape, size, and composition.

Source: Daily Om

Daily Om ~ Coming Full Circle

imagesCA5PX3K1Often the reappearance of an old pattern is a sign that it has come full circle ready to be released. Life is a circular journey through our issues and processes, and this is why things that are technically new often seem very familiar. It is also why, whenever we work to release a habit, change a pattern, or overcome a fear, we often encounter that issue one last time, even after we thought we had conquered it. Often, when this happens, we feel defeated or frustrated that after all our hard work we are still dealing with the same problem. However, the reappearance of a pattern, habit, or fear, is often a sign that we have come full circle, and that if we can maintain our resolve through one last test, we will achieve a new level of mastery in our lives.

When we come full circle, there is often the feeling that we have arrived in a familiar place, but that we ourselves are somehow different. We know that we can handle challenges that seemed insurmountable when we began our journey, and there is the feeling that we might be ready to take on a new problem, or some new aspect of the old problem. We feel empowered and courageous to have taken on the challenge of stopping a pattern, releasing a habit, or overcoming a fear, and to have succeeded. At times like these, we deserve a moment of rest and self-congratulation before we move on to the next challenge.

Coming full circle is like stepping into a clearing where, for a moment, we can see where we came from and where we are standing at the same time. Remembering that we will be tested again is important, but it’s also important to pause and take a look at the ground we’ve covered, honoring our courage, our persistence, and our achievement. Then we can begin the next leg of our circular journey with a fuller understanding of where we are coming from.

Daily Om ~ The Boundaries of Experience

sunrise1Your current comfort zone has served you, but it represents your behaviours and patterns from your past.

None of us are born with a guidebook that provides explicit rules for thought and behaviour that will enable us to navigate life successfully. To cope with the myriad of complexities to which all of humanity is subject, we each develop a set of habits and routines that ground us, their continuity assuring us that life is progressing normally. Most of us know, whether instinctively or by experience, that transformations can be uncomfortable, but we always learn and gain so much. Any initial discomfort we experience when expanding our comfort zones diminishes gradually as we both become accustomed to change and begin to understand that temporary discomfort is a small price to pay for the evolution of our soul.

Your current comfort zone did, at one time, serve a purpose in your life. But it is representative of behaviours and patterns of thought that empowered you to cope with challenges of days past. Now, this comfort zone does little to facilitate the growth you wish to achieve in the present. Leaving your comfort zone behind through personal expansion of any kind can prepare you to take the larger leaps of faith that will, in time, help you refine your purpose. Work your way outward at your own pace, and try not to let your discomfort interfere with your resolve. With the passage of each well-earned triumph, you will have grown and your comfort zone will have expanded to accommodate this evolution.

Whether your comfort zone is living with your parents, or perhaps being too shy to socialize, or maybe it’s not realizing your spirit self—whatever it is, start small, and you will discover that venturing beyond the limited comfort zone you now cling to is not as stressful an experience as you imagined it might be. And the joy you feel upon challenging yourself in this way will nearly always outweigh your discomfort. As you continue to expand your comfort zone to include new ideas, activities, goals, and experiences, you will see that you are capable of stimulating change and coping with the fresh challenges that accompany it.

Daily Om ~ Afraid of the Truth

Facing the truth upfront rather than turning from it will keep your life moving in a forward and positive direction.

Most of us have had the experience of being in possession of a piece of truth that we were afraid to share because we knew it would not be well received. There are also instances in which we ourselves have been unable to handle some truth confronting us. This might be a small truth, such as not wanting to see that our car needs repairs because we don’t want to pay for them, or a large truth, such as not fully accepting that someone close to us is pushing us away. Usually the truth is evident, and we can see it if we choose, but we have elaborate ways of hiding the truth form ourselves, no matter how apparent it is.

For the most part, we avoid the truth because it scares us, or makes us angry, or makes us feel like we don’t know what to do. We often create our lives based on a particular understanding, and if that understanding turns out to be fully or even partially incorrect, we may feel that our whole sense of reality is being threatened. It takes a strong person to face the truth in circumstances like these, and many of us run for cover instead. Nevertheless, we can only avoid the truth for so long before it begins to make itself known in ever more forceful ways.

Ultimately, there is no way to avoid the truth, no matter how painful it is, so the sooner we let down our defenses, the better. When we know the truth and accept that we may have to adjust our lives to accommodate, we are in alignment with reality. At the same time, we can be patient with people around us who have a hard time seeing the truth, because we know how painful it can be.  Whatever the truth is, we make a sincere effort not to close our eyes to it, but instead to be grateful that we have access to it.

Daily Om ~ Translating Our Feelings

Sometimes the feelings of being scared and excited can elicit the same physical response in our bodies.

When new challenges and opportunities show up in our lives, we may diagnose ourselves as feeling scared when what we really feel is excited. Often we have not been taught how to welcome the thrill of a new opportunity, and so we opt to back off, indulging our anxiety instead of awakening our courage. One way to inspire ourselves to embrace the opportunities that come our way is to look more deeply into our feelings and see that butterflies in our stomach or a rapidly beating heart are not necessarily a sign that we are afraid. Those very same feelings can be translated as excitement, curiosity, passion, and even love.

There is nothing wrong with being afraid as long as we do not let it stop us from doing the things that excite us. Most of us assume that brave people are fearless, but the truth is that they are simply more comfortable with fear because they face it on a regular basis. The more we do this, the more we feel excitement in the face of challenges rather than anxiety. The more we cultivate our ability to move forward instead of backing off, the more we trust ourselves to be able to handle the new opportunity, whether it’s a new job, an exciting move, or a relationship. When we feel our fear, we can remind ourselves that maybe we are actually just excited. We can assure ourselves that this opportunity has come our way because we are meant to take it.

Framing things just a little differently can dramatically shift our mental state from one of resistance to one of openness. We can practice this new way of seeing things by saying aloud: I am really excited about this job interview. I am really looking forward to going on a date with this amazing person. I am excited to have the opportunity to do something I have never done before. As we do this, we will feel our energy shift from fear, which paralyzes, to excitement, which empowers us to direct all that energy in the service of moving forward, growing, and learning.

Daily Card: Island of Giant Cattle

Today’s card is Island of Giant Cattle. In this card we see, beyond a fiery river, a herdsmen watching grazing cattle. Here’s the background:

In Celtic tradition, the giant herdsman of cattle is a well-known guardian of thresholds. Often surly and unhelpful, he will give advice and warning.

The Meaning

Biting off more than you can chew. Provocation given or received. The goal is before you but you are prevented from attainment. Over-confidence.

The Challenge

There will always be some things that defeat you, however hard you try. The inability to trust those who may know better could be preventing you from reaching the right decision. Concentrate on learning more about yourself. Perfect your skills.

Sometimes we are confronted with a problem, or challenge, that seems completely overwhelming and we just don’t know what to do about it. It seems everything we try turns out badly or just doesn’t make any difference. What to do? It’s quite often a good idea to share the difficulty with someone else…sometimes a different perspective is needed. But what if you don’t agree with the perspective given? Well, that’s ok too because we all have different perspectives on things. After all we are all individuals with different life experiences. However, another person’s perspective might just give you insights that you’d never considered before. It doesn’t mean you have to follow their advice although trying something a different way can be good too.

Sometimes we want to ‘fix’ something but cannot, not because what we are doing is right or wrong but because we just have to allow things to play out. This is often very difficult to do because our egos want the upper hand. Our egos want control over something, someone or a situation in order to make us feel better about our own inner feelings of guilt, anger or whatever. When this happens we have a tendency to block out anything that doesn’t fit into our mind-set at the time. The way to move through this is by being open to all points-of-view and not condemning something as unhelpful. In the long run another’s point of view might be unhelpful to the given situation or problem but considering it is always a good thing to do.

There are times when people give us advice or perspectives that really go against what we believe to be true…but again there’s no right or wrong…just different view points. And sometimes, another’s viewpoint can be the most helpful but because of the ego, who wants to exert control, we dismiss this viewpoint. We look for others who will sooth our own sense of right and wrong, which can be dangerous for ourselves and lead us astray. There are times when we have to challenge ourselves, or allow others to challenge us – not easy at all but often it can make all the difference between solving a problem or making a situation a bit easier to deal with.