Tag Archives: Wisdom

AWAKENING TO BE IN THE MOMENT

“It is through gratitude for the present moment that the spiritual dimension of life opens up.” Eckhart Tolle

Photo: Georganne Spruce

Photo: Georganne Spruce

Don’t forget I’ll be teaching a Release Your Fear Workshop in Asheville, NC this Sat., Nov. 8, 1-3:00 pm, $15 at the door.  For more visit:  http://awakeningtothedance.com/workshops-2/

Can you easily find that quiet place within?  How do you do that?  Do you go there often?  If you feel blocked, do you know why?

So many traumatic things have happened over the last month that I have felt wound up all the time, not recovering from one shock before the next one hit.  But during the last two days, there have been moments when I could slip into silence, and just be there.  Although I had several things to do yesterday, what I felt most was that it was the day after the big event—the election.  I was just being with the results.

In the Silence, We Accept What Is

Some of the people I voted for won, others I voted for didn’t.  Regardless of where I’ve lived, I’ve always voted.  I take the concept of a democracy seriously and accept my role in it.  It can only continue to be a democracy if the people are willing to speak out through their votes.  I’m very concerned about that because only one third of the electorate voted this time.  Why?

vote counts

Were people fed up with Washington politics?  Did they ignore this election because it wasn’t a presidential election?  Could they not decide for whom to vote?  Did the changes some states are making to the voting laws and districts confuse people?

The result of the election is just another happening I have to accept.  Life is like that sometimes.  We can’t control everything, but acceptance doesn’t mean we have to like or agree with what has happened.  It’s like forgiveness. When we accept what happened, we simply let the incident be what it is, and we go on.

Experiencing the Silence Can Soothe Our Stress

This week I’m beginning to go on with many things, especially starting to create time in each day to bathe in silence and make room for the lovely creative thoughts that visit me with ideas for writing or solutions to challenges.  When I take time to bathe in the silence, life feels good for a while no matter what is actually happening.
FIREPLACE

The other night, at the end of a snowy day, I build a fire and spent the evening bathing in its warm, frequently distracted from my reading to notice the way the fire glowed or flared up when one piece of log fell against another.  Time became irrelevant.  Only the crackling of the fire spoke to me and I relished each syllable.

Silence Opens Us to New Possibilities

Being in the moment allows us to feel and experience life fully.  Those quiet moments are when those wonderfully outrageous thoughts come to us of doing wonderful things our egos don’t think we can do.  As a child, I saw Jane Russell dancing down a staircase and in my day-dreaming state I became that dancer.  I have never danced down a staircase, but I did become a modern dancer.  Perhaps the dancer part of me was born in that moment before I even tried to dance.

When there are difficult decisions to make, I am grateful for the silence, for in that moment, I can open to the spiritual part of myself that tends to make the best decisions.  In that place I can see more options, and I can release my fear of not making the right decision or of the criticism of others.  I can not only listen to my inner guidance, but I can hear the messages it sends me.

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Creative Ideas Emerge in the Silence

The autumn is a time when I am constantly awed by the beauty of nature as it slips toward winter.  It always leaves before I am ready and suddenly winter is here with the cold, wind, and snow, but more than any time of year, winter reminds me of the value of being in the moment.

As the aroma of lentil soup cooking fills the house, I am perfectly content, needing no entertainment other than watching the wind blow the red and yellow leaves from the trees.  I don’t need to go out and find companionship.  Because I have stopped racing around doing things, I will rediscover that quieter part of myself within the silence, waiting for us to become reacquainted, waiting to send me another poem, or bless me for taking the vacation I need in the middle of the week.

Wisdom Lies Deep Within

We can be truly conscious only when we stop to listen to our inner voice and stop to take care of what is festering before it becomes a problem.  When our egos become deeply involved in an issue, where they lead us may not be a wise place.  But when we feel the ego expanding, we know it’s time to find the silence because that’s where we will find the best solution.  When I go within, I often ask, “What is the wisest thing for me to do?”  The answer I receive is always a better choice than what my ego alone would choose and I am most grateful.

© 2014 Georganne Spruce                                               ZQT4PQ5ZN7F5

Related Articles: Eckhart Tolle – Being in the Present Moment(video), The Wisdom of Silence: Learning to Talk Less and Say More, Finding Your Silence

AWAKENING TO LIVE HONESTLY

“Whoever is careless with the truth in small matters cannot be trusted in important matters.”  Albert Einstein

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Do you always tell the truth?  How do you feel about little white lies?  Are you the same person on the outside that you are on the inside?

Our Society Focuses on the External Self

Living in a world that focuses on the external rewards of achievement tends to influence us to think that how we appear is the most important aspect of self.  Our image sells products and sells who we are.  When I started learning about marketing for my memoir Awakening to the Dance: A Journey to Wholeness, I was startled to discover my name was my brand.  With that concept, it seemed to me that the business aspect of writing separated me from the artistic aspect of me that came from deep within my core.

Writing inspirational material and poetry comes from a very spiritual aspect of my being.  To quantify it and box it up into a presentation that would sell seems very unauthentic; yet, every writer wants to connect with the readers who will buy, appreciate, and perhaps benefit from her work.  The question then became:  How do I sell myself and my book with integrity?

Design by Leslie Shaw Design

Design by Leslie Shaw Design

This is not just a question for writers.  Many people are daily faced with this question in business and in relationships.  How can I be who I truly am and be appreciated and loved?  At the core of the question is the issue of honesty.

We Are Often Dishonest To Protect Ourselves

Growing up in a family where my mother and father often argued, I became the child who wanted to keep the peace, but I was also taught that it was a very bad thing to be dishonest.  Despite that, there were times when I pretended to agree with my parents or presented a situation as being slightly different from the reality just to keep them from getting upset.  I didn’t feel good about it, but it was part of the survival pattern I developed.

One day when I was a young adult, I thought about my impending marriage and decided I would stop telling “little white lies” to keep the peace.  It wasn’t right and I wanted an honest relationship with my husband.  I knew I could be a better person than I had been and vowed to make this change.  Putting a priority on communicating honestly greatly improved my self-esteem.

Being Honest May Be Challenging

But being honest isn’t always as easy as it sounds because the other person, a spouse, boss or colleague may not like our truth.  There are times when being honest can create huge problems for us.  It may jeopardize a career or relationship.  It may displease people we need to support us in various ways, so we weigh the benefit against the loss.

As Einstein suggests, if we are careless in small matters about being honest, we are most likely to be careless with important issues, and when we have stepped over that line, it may be very difficult to return.  We’ve seen this often in politics.  Richard Nixon is one of the outstanding examples.  Once you know someone has lied to you, it is difficult to trust them after this.

Honesty

Honesty (Photo credit: basswulf)

Honesty Is Basic to Our Spirituality and Wisdom

At the spiritual level, the damage we do to our souls is great when we lie or deceive others.  Thomas Jefferson once said, “Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.”  When we live honestly, there is a joy and energy that permeates our lives because we have no fear that our secrets will be revealed, for there are no secrets.  We have nothing to hide.  When we make a mistake, we acknowledge and take responsibility for it.  We act with integrity so that our words and actions match.

When we model a life built on honesty, we inspire others who may be drowning in the lies and secrets of which they are ashamed.  With these burdens weighing people down, how can they like themselves?  The fear that these secrets will be discovered will always be the shadow that hides who they really are and separates them from the sense of being one with All.

Honesty Frees Us to Love Ourselves

When we accept our deep, spiritual self and feel connected with Spirit, we know that we are worthy of love and learn to love ourselves.  When we love ourselves, we know we are worth more than living a life underground, and we have the courage to reveal our true selves, and clean up the messes in our lives.  As we discard our camouflage, we find a freedom and joy that is authentic.  We gradually learn to simply be who we are, and with the confidence that gives us, we no longer need lie or mislead.

What we put out comes back to us.  When we are honest and have integrity, we will draw to us people and circumstances who will relish our honesty.  Whatever falls away was an obstruction to our growth, no matter how painful that loss may be.  It is all a part of the path we follow to wisdom.

©2013 Georganne Spruce                                                   ZQT4PQ5ZN7F5

Related Articles:  Wayne Dyer: Trust Your Inner SelfWorldly and Spiritual Values:  Humankind May Depend on Rediscovering a Natural Balance, Are You Being Honest With Yourself, Debbie Ford:  Honesty and Integrity (video)

DANCING WITH NATURE’S CYCLES

“They must often change, who would be constant in happiness and wisdom.”  Confucius

What do you feel about autumn?  Does it depress or invigorate you?  What is good about this change?

Living in the Midst of Nature

My yard is almost completely covered with oak leaves, and walking down the driveway is very tricky with the abundance of acorns and the slippery leaves.  When I walk down to get the mail, I have to be in the present giving full attention to where I step.  No matter how fast I’ve been moving through the day, I am forced to slow down.

Yesterday it was in the mid-seventies and I had the back door open while I ate lunch.  A strange sound like a light sprinkle of rain arose.  I looked up from the book I was reading, but it was dry outside.  The sound continued sparking my curiosity, so I walked to the door and looked up into the old trees in the yard.  A wind was blowing, visible only at the very top of the trees, and as it increased, a shower of golden leaves blanketed the deck and yard.

Some mourn the loss of summer and find the autumn depressing, but the changes in nature are so dramatic that I continue to be awed by them and am reminded that these changes are natural.  We can accept the change or be unhappy about it.  It really is our choice, and much of life is like that.

Awakening to the Wisdom of Change

Confucius’ quote reminds us that resisting change won’t bring us happiness or wisdom.  Change is a natural element of life.  In order to experience happiness, we must be flexible, accept the fact we can’t control everything or everyone in our lives.  When things aren’t going our way, we need to see what we can learn from the experience or how we can reframe our response to a more positive assessment of the situation.

Wisdom is also about change and growth.  The wise elders are the ones who can see the depth and meaning in life as it changes and evolves.  They are in touch with the eternal.  They see that, although we experience physical changes through the seasons, birth and death, moving out into the world and finding new environments, these are all physical experiences.  What really matters is how we see and deal with the change and our willingness to look deeper.

Limitations of Resistance

The unwise among us are the ones who resist any and all change.  They create a safe cocoon in which anyone and anything that does not fit is rejected.  They defend their way of doing things to the death—the death of the relationships they have or to literal death.  When we have been close to nature and attentive to its cycles, we know how futile this is.

Finding Happiness in Change

I am much happier than I’ve ever been.  Do I have everything I want?  No.  But over the years I have learned to be more flexible and that has reduced the stress in my life.  I am more accepting of the things I cannot change.  I love Alan Watts’ comment:  “The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”

This year I am definitely dancing with autumn, hiking up and down the mountains, sliding down slopes of dry leaves, looking up into the blue sky to be dazzled by the brilliant red leaves waving over head.  Like autumn, my life is in great flux, learning to promote my books, flooded with new ideas like the shower of leaves blanketing my yard.  I hardly know which way to turn, but it’s all good because it is taking me some place I want to go.

Nurturing Our Spiritual Selves

Now the weather is beautiful and I can be outside, but soon the winter will come with cold and snow and unpredictable weather.  Then it will be time to go inside, literally and figuratively.  I’ll spend more time promoting my book online, finding more silence and time for thinking about what to do next, snuggling under the blanket in front of the fire, going deeper.  What’s nice about winter is that if we have nurtured our own interiors, we have no need to fear this time.  And if we haven’t, it’s a good time to start clearing up our “stuff” without the distractions of sunshine and flowers blooming.

So, this week I’m going to plunge into the leaves, dance through them with my rake and move them into the plastic bags the city insists I use (okay, I’m still not happy about this, but I’m moving on).  And once it becomes too cold for pleasant hiking, I’ll just turn on the music and dance inside.

What do you like most about the autumn?  What does it mean to you?

© 2012 Georganne Spruce                                                       ZQT4PQ5ZN7F5

Related articles: What if Money Was No Object – Alan Watts