A LINK: Today’s SONG from India Arie and my reflection with a link to the full article, “We Were Made For These Times”. #spiritualreminders
(WARNING: Some negative feelings expressed but true hero’s can deal with stuff like this! And read on for a wonderful quote by Marianne Williamson about the conscious hero’s journey.)
Construction, deconstruction, remodeling – these are words that come to me to try to express the feelings I have in reflecting over my MK experience.
I believe in the principles of the Masterkeys. I even love the spirituality of those principles. But they didn’t work for me? Or they haven’t worked for me yet. Or they are always working, but I still haven’t been able to manifest them for my good. Or I’m just not feeling that they are working and I’m wondering why they aren’t working for me?!
I’m unhappier than I have ever been and things have actually seem to have gotten worse. Let me try to explain.
Perhaps it’s where I’m at in life right now – it’s just a difficult time right now for many reasons.
I’m more angry at myself, it seems. I have no one else to blame for my misery. It all falls on me. I’m responsible for it. I’ve manifested it. Melancholy and misery have been my companions for a long time. And I know that to break off this cement is hard work. It’s hard messy work to remodel and to build again. Perhaps I’m just in the midst of that remodeling mess?
I’m not any happier. I am not any more hopeful. I followed the assignments religiously. I did everything asked of me. But to me it seems that there is no deep change. Again – trusting that the remodeling is going according to plan and someday I’ll see the golden light breaking through the wall I’m striking with my sledgehammer.
I feel more depressed and hopeless than I ever have. And yet I still believe in the principles and am trying to practice them. And would recommend MKMMA to others. Do the course. It’s a lot of work, but it’s good. There is hope for you.
My dreams actually seem further away.
I have enough integrity to not pretend that it’s worked. I want it too, but I just don’t see it or feel it. There is a quote I’m fond of that says,
“We can only posses what we experience. Truth to be understood, must be lived.”
I haven’t experienced transformation through this process…yet. (YET – is that the key word?!) And to hear the stories of others who are is actually more discouraging than encouraging for me because I just can’t seem to get there. And I wonder if there is anyone else out there who feels like I do?
I wish it had worked for me. I’ll keep trying. Perhaps I am one of those beyond the help of MKMMA?
The cement is so thick. Some of it has barely chipped off. The divine spark still seems so dim. To be me feels more like a curse than any gift. The pain is so deep under the cement. My only hope – that I’m not at the core yet, that it is there but I need to keep digging. The therapy and medication hasn’t worked in the past either?!
Live each day as if it is your last. For many of us the pain is so great that we wish it was our last. Spiritual pain is the “tragic gap” – the gap between the way things are and the way we wish them to be. But even more deeply – the gap between the way we are and the way we wish we could be.
And to know that I’m responsible for that tragic gap – for my inability to “do” or apply the Masterkeys principles “correctly” or appropriately, adds even more pain to my experience. Why can’t it work for me?
MKMMA has shown me how deep my pain is. I guess it’s been unrealistic of me to think that a 6 month course could undo 50 years of pain.
My life has never “FELT” worse. And I’ve created it even when I’ve tried not to through this course. That is a hard reality to deal with.
But perhaps I can tell myself that I’m still a hero on the hero’s journey. This quote gives me hope:
This process can be so painful that we are tempted to go backwards. It takes courage – this is often called the path of the spiritual warrior – to endure the sharp pains of self discovery rather than choose to take the dull pain of unconsciousness that would last the rest of our lives.” Marianne Williamson “A Return to Love” p. 135
Did MKMMA work? I don’t think so. Or I don’t know. Or it worked in a different way than I expected or wanted. Or am I just at the death point on the hero’s journey and resurrection is just around the corner?
From my construction days I’m remembering the difficulty of remodeling. The hard work of breaking up cement and rebar, using a sawzall to cut through walls and tear them down and haul it all to the dumpster. Sweat, scratches, sore muscles. And wondering if it would ever get done, if it would ever look nice again. There is so much debris, I feel lost. I’m not even to the sweeping stage yet where all the debris is removed and you’re ready to start building again.
The reframe throughout this lament – interspersed between these feelings should be the phrase, “I still believe in the principles I’ve learned.” I feel hopeless, but I still believe in the spiritual principles. I feel miserable, but I still believe in the spiritual principles. And I’m still practicing them. And I would still recommend MKMMA to others.
And I’ll keep chipping and whacking away at the cement. But I don’t have a wrecking ball and maybe my sledgehammer is a little too small and I’m losing hope. I hope I’ll be able to let you know when the golden light starts breaking through.
Has the MKMMA Experience worked for me? Yes and no.
Have all my dreams come true? No. Have I overcome all my “issues”? No. Do I now live in complete happiness and bliss? No.
But I believe in the principles and will continue to practice them. And the deeper answer for me lies in the same one word answer to the following questions from our last webinar.
- What is the source of Spirit?
- What is the reason for our existence?
- What is worth living for?
- What is worth dying for?
The one word answer to all of these is – LOVE.
Has the course increased my love for God? Yes. Has it helped me to love others? Yes! Has it helped me to love myself? Yes!
My hero’s journey is a journey from fear to love. Marrianne Williamson wrote:
The spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear and the acceptance of love back in our hearts.
I have a long way to go to “unlearn” and replace my fear. But the Master Key Experience has increased my faith, given me hope and reminded me that it’s all about love. Loving my bliss, serving others and perhaps the greatest miracle of all – continuing to learn to love myself.
Thank you for the encouragement on this part of my spiritual journey.
There’s an expression, “There is nothing new under the sun.” It’s all there in the serenity prayer – all 3 “Laws of Least Effort.”
Acceptance: I practice Acceptance. Today I accept people, situations, circumstances, and events as they occur. I know that this moment is as it should be, because the whole universe is as it should be. I do not struggle against the whole universe by struggling against this moment. My acceptance is total and complete. I accept things as they are in this moment, not as I wish they were.
Responsibility: Having accepted things as they are, I take Responsibility for my situation and for all those events I see as problems. I know that taking responsibility means not blaming anyone or anything for my situation (and this includes myself). I also know that every problem is an opportunity in disguise, and this alertness to opportunities allows me to take this moment and transform it into a greater benefit.
Defenselessness: Today my awareness remains established in Defenselessness. I relinquish the need to defend my point of view. I feel no need to convince or persuade others to accept my point of view. I remain open to all points of view and am not rigidly attached to any one of them.
And if you haven’t read the whole Serenity prayer, it is worth a read. Within the extended portion there is more on all three – acceptance, responsibility and defenselessness.
That’s about all I can write tonight – using these words in these laws and prayer trying to accept things as they are and hoping, hoping that somehow the best is yet to come…
I watched the movie “Finding Joe” this week and was reminded of some of my favorite quotes by Joseph Campbell. They echo and reflect the MKMMA themes we’ve been exploring. So I’ll share a few in picture form… Which is your favorite and why?
The quote above is one of my favorites at the present time. I can make my plans and have my definite major purpose, but the “Friendly Universe” still surprises me with things that are better than I could ask or imagine. Eph. 3:20. What an adventure!
A daily reminder for me to find what brings me joy, to concentrate on what brings me joy, to think about what I want, not what I don’t want. If I create joy within regardless of the circumstances won’t I experience more joy in the world without? “My joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.” Jn 15:11
Even my quirkiness is what makes me unique and when I share this naturally without pretense or fear it connects me with others in wonderful ways. People value realness and authenticity when we live as “nature’s greatest miracles” that we are.
Could it be that simple? To find and follow our bliss is the key to life? I think so! It’s part of the abundant life. Jn 10:10
I want to live large and “loud” and give myself to something greater than myself – to love and to serve and to be a light. I especially like the image of a Lion and the quote above because it reminds me of what Og says, “I am not a sheep, I am a Lion…”
Real heroes and heroines take off their masks and show their true selves no matter what! Don’t they?! We are learning more and more to become our true and authentic selves on our own Hero’s Journey with the help of Master Keys.
This poem came to my mind as I listened to the week 22 video about the “Masquerade Ball.” Yes, it’s true, we all wear masks, but the basic premise of this poem seems flawed to me now. We don’t have to wait for someone, or something outside of us to free us, but to simply turn within, get in touch with our true and authentic selves, have courage to take off our masks and let our light shine. We have the key to free ourselves from wearing the masks we do.
Masks – Don’t be Fooled by Me!
Don’t be fooled by me. Don’t be fooled by the face I wear. For I wear a mask, I wear a thousand masks, masks that I’m afraid to take off, and none of them are me. Pretending is an art that’s second nature to me.
But don’t be fooled, oh no, don’t be fooled. I give you the impression that I’m secure and that I need no one. But don’t believe me, please. My surface may seem smooth, but my surface is my mask, my ever varying and ever concealing mask.
Beneath lays no smugness, no complacence. Beneath dwells the real me, in confusion, in fear, in aloneness. But I hide this. I don’t want anyone to know it. I panic at the thought of my weakness and fear being exposed. That’s why I frantically create a mask to hide behind, a nonchalant, sophisticated facade, to help me pretend, to shield me from the glance that knows.
But such a glance is precisely my salvation. My only salvation and I know it. That is, if it’s followed by acceptance, if it’s followed by love. Who am I; you may wonder. I am somebody you know very well. I am every man, every woman you meet. I am, in fact, YOU!
In Master Keys we’ve been reflecting on how to use our “Fog” as a tool of expansion. I’ve created an acrostic that helps me to remember what “Fog” is. It’s spelled a little differently – “FAUGH” and it stands for:
How could we possibly use these as “tools for expansion?” I think it has to do with our awareness and being conscious. Sometimes I actually need to remind myself of who I am and sometimes that begins with knowing who I am not.
I am not my feelings. I am not my thoughts. I am not my past experiences or my present ones. I am not my past regret. I am not my future worry. I am not the unworthiness I sometimes feel. I am not my anger. I am not my sadness. I am something much greater than all of them. All of these feelings and even my personality are like waves on a lake. But who I am is the lake itself.
Maybe this is sounding a bit too metaphysical or spiritual but it seems to help me. Or maybe I can simplify it and just know that I am the observer – the one who sees and is aware of all I think and feel and experience. Who is this one who sees, knows and is aware? This is the true me, my true self, my higher self, my spirit, my soul.
And my soul helps me get perspective on it all. So I can simply notice my “FAUGH”, observe it, even feel it and just let it go as I choose how to feel, think and be in the next moment and then the next. So I use my feelings to expand into greater awareness and increase my joy, my love as I continue to come alive.
Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Gal. 5:25
Fear is the brick and anger, unworthiness, guilt and hurt feelings are the mortar. Fear is the brick that often blocks me from entering into life fully on my hero’s journey and prevents me from loving life, myself, others and God. I’m reminded of a quote by Marianne Williamson.
I’ve learned fear in a lot of different ways. The lessons have gone deep and covered me with a lot of cement. Sometimes it seems impossible that I can chip away at that cement. But I do believe that Williamson is right – the spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear bit by bit and learning to love again. Over and over again in the Christian tradition it says to “fear not.” This is not just a helpful suggestion but the spiritual path.
I’m struggling with this weeks concept that the brick of fear and the mortar of the other emotions can be used as “tools for expansion.” Sometimes it’s hard to believe that I am not my fear and I am not any of the other emotions I feel. I am the observer who can simply notice them. To be the non judgmental observer is freeing. I need to practice this more often.
This reminds me of the poem The Guest House by Rumi
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
That seems impossible to believe. But maybe the deeper truth is it also has something to do with acceptance and with letting go? And really living in to the truth that as John 4:18 says,
“Perfect love casts out fear.”
I’m grateful for this reminder this week – that through “power posing” I can be happier, more powerful and have presence by using my body to train my brain. Sometimes it’s as simple as the chemical soup we live in within our skin but with which we are often unaware and don’t realize that we can do things that will change us and make us feel better. Could it be that simple?
Two things especially strike me: 1. Lifting hands (and arms). and 2. Lifting our heads. First, So many people often raise their hands and arms to God in worship, reverence and adoration. And in the bible we read, “Lift up your hands,” or “I will lift my hands.” Now science tells us that the simple act of doing so, helps us to feel better and reduces stress!
Second, And like the sprinter crossing the finish line with arms extended and head raised, in an expression called pride when we feel our authentic goodness and happiness we raise our head a bit. This gives meaning to one of my favorite expressions in the bible.
“But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high.” Psalm 3:3
A simple pose to help us get the happy chemicals going, to love ourselves and even know – with our body that we are deeply loved by God who desires to lift us out of feelings of stress, fear and shame.
Wow! So I’m going to do the power pose for 2 minutes for 21 days to increase my confidence, reduce stress and feel the love of both God and myself. Who’s with me? Let me know if you’re taking the challenge as well and let’s see what happens and how we feel.
Special bonus for religious folks who can or need to laugh at themselves a little bit.
Transitioning to Scroll 5 this week – “I will live this day as if it is my last.” This seems to echo one of my favorite passages:
It’s hard to live at that intensity, isn’t it? Yes, but in the ebb and flow of the highs and lows may we still try to live mindfully rather than mindlessly as we so often do in unawareness of the gift of life and beauty that surrounds us.
If you’ve not read it or heard it, consider using this video as a meditation today. Especially touching to me is the line – “Tomorrow they will be gone, and so will I…” Make the most of time now. Do not delay.
I’ve never really been in the habit of reading obituaries. But I’ve been doing so the past couple of weeks and reflecting on these 3 questions afterwards:
- What would that person give to change places with me and have one more day?
- Who can I let know how grateful I am for their presence today if it is my last?
- How will I behave today to finish the masterpiece of my life elegantly?
Doing this gives me the needed perspective and a poignant reminder to make the most of my moments and my days.