We are in the Water of Infinite Life as the fish is in the ocean.
The Spirit of Life is all around us. It flows through us. It permeates everything. It is the essence of all form and flows through every condition. And yet we are still looking for It. What we look for we unwittingly look at, but fail to recognize.
Today, this minute, your mind is an outlet through which this invisible but intelligent Energy is operating. It is operating creatively through you at this very moment, and whether you know it or not, or believe it or not, today it is creating and re-creating every cell of your body. It is molding and remolding every situation and condition in your environment.
The Life by which you are surrounded is the essence of all life, the substance of every form, the intelligence back of every act. It is the life in the animal, in the tree, in the mineral. It is the source of intelligence in man. There are some truths about the nature of this Life which we must realize before we can consciously use It.
First of all, Life is pure intelligence. You and I do not conceive of such an Infinite Intelligence in Its entirety, but we do conceive of It in some degree because we are in and of It and some part of It is in us. Otherwise we would not and could not exist. Life creates by making things out of Itself. Let us think of Life as pure Spirit, creating through the agency of Its Word. That is, by spiritual thought or ideal. The thought or ideal of Life automatically becomes law; the Law of Life is a law of mind in action.
Holmes, Ernest. The Art of Life Chapter 3
By Dr. Bill Little
A fundamental concept of Hinduism is that human beings are meant to be happy.
They are not kidding, nor are they whispering sweet nothings. If we are not happy, we enter a downward spiral emotionally and eventually reach a level of just barely existing, and then not existing.
The only reason we are not happy is that things are not going ‘our way.’ I.e., we have pre-conceived notions of what happiness is and then we use comparison (a form of judgment) to see if these notions are being met. Thus, we have set up an ego structure (a very common one) as to what happiness is and it's a very personal one in that it’s unique in each of us. The error is that we have never considered the idea that perhaps happiness exists independently of our personal designs. If it does, then our ego approach to happiness is doomed to failure; it simply misses the mark.
In this time of global pandemic many lessons are being taught to us ALL. This implies that we all have certain traits that are self-destructive, and we had better cease functioning in these ways if we want to be fully alive. It’s easy now to judge our situation as being limited and frightening – almost like a caged animal. Thus, we have reason to be morose, and in some cases, we find ourselves grieving our loss of relatives, friends and ‘freedom.’ Obviously, none of this will lead to happiness. So how do we escape this self-imposed prison?
While our prison may be uniquely ours, breaking out of it requires some universal understanding and behavior. All human problems stem from one idea. It is the idea ‘I am a person who was born so many years ago, has these opinions, and will die at some point in time.’ This is so strong in us that it is unconsciously accepted by us all. What if this is not true?
What if we were never born?
What if we witnessed our birth?
What if we never die?
What if we witness death?
What if our real identity is this ongoing witness that cannot be changed by any circumstance?
Do you see how this changes everything? In this case, things happen, they are events, that’s all. No matter what they are, they cannot alter our real nature – the witness. We are, right now, an eternal being called consciousness or awareness, etc.
Being awareness is a very happy state to be in. Watching the dynamic universe of the senses is fascinating. Life alters itself; we don’t have to have things ‘turn out our way.’ Whatever happens eventually changes because the universe is alive and evolving, not because we personally want it to. What we will find if we are brave enough to consider this, is that all events work out perfectly – far better than we could have conceived.
Yes, it takes courage and faith to release a manipulative identity, but life quickly responds with new experiences that demonstrate vast intelligence, total integration, and pure love. So, in many ways the whole purpose of being a mature human being is to cease being a human being and identify with the one watching this human being.
The event of a global pandemic is just another event. Turn it to your advantage in a spiritual sense by choosing real happiness – the happiness of who you really are; become the light of consciousness that illumines all events and therefore cannot be trapped in any event.
Here's some highly recommended words that help accomplish this goal:
“The Father and I are one.” Christianity
“I am Shiva.” Hinduism
“There is but one Mind; this Mind is God; this Mind is my mind now.” Religious Science
“It is done unto me as I believe.” Christianity
“When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be. When I let go of what I have, I receive what I need.” Tao te Ching
“If you realize all things change, there is nothing you will try to hold on to.’ Tao te Ching
“Escape from the black cloud that surrounds you. Then you will see your own light as radiant as the full moon.” Rumi
“Don’t you know yet? It is your light that lights the worlds.” Rumi
Ernest Holmes - The Art of Life
Meet every doubt that enters your mind with greater faith.
Meet every confusion with a deeper sense of calm.
Take the time to do this.
Arrange with yourself to give yourself this time.
Start your day with peace and you will live it in peace.
Peace is the power at the heart of God and God is Life in us even as Life is in everything.
If you are confused, try this simple experiment.
Sit down quietly and say:
The peace of God is at the center of my being.
I am conscious of this peace.
I enter into this peace.
I am surrounded by this peace.
This peace moves out from me in all directions.
It calms the troubled waters of my experience.
It heals everything it contacts.
There is nothing but peace.
I rejoice in this peace.
I permit this peace to enter my soul, to fill me with calm, to inspire me with confidence.
I know that this peace goes before me and makes perfect, plain and straight my way.
This Thing Called Life
It is said that Jesus, walking through the multitude, diffused a healing power which touched people into wholeness by its divine presence. His command stilled the wind and waves. His knowledge of spiritual law fed the thousands. His consciousness of peace calmed the troubled mind. His love was as a healing balm to the sick. Jesus possessed a transcendent power.
Have you asked yourself, “Why can’t I perform these same miracles? Why can’t I live a life of magic?” I think you have—I have—everyone has. Jesus consciously brought the invisible power of Life to bear upon his environment.
He told his followers that what he was doing they could do if they believed they could. The whole mystery and meaning of the teaching of Jesus is bound up in the word, BELIEVE.
When we turn to the teachings of Jesus we find them direct, simple and understandable. He said: “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” He was always talking about the more abundant life, the greater happiness, the deeper peace. He told us that we can rest secure in the love of God; that the power of God is always at our command.
He said that God is love, God is truth, God is life, God is power. Not some life, some love, some truth, some power, but all life, all truth, all love, all power.
He said: If you wish to do what I am doing, follow the few simple truths I have given you. I have told you that the kingdom of God is at hand. You do not see it because you are filled with fear. Your eyes are so filled with tears that you cannot see; your ears are so dulled with confusion that you cannot hear; your minds are so weighted down with doubt that you cannot understand.
What was his remedy for all this?
Open your spiritual eyes; listen with the inner ear; open your minds. What is it that we are to open our eyes, our ears and our minds to? What is it that we must see, hear and understand?
It is something Jesus learned through silent communion with God, The One Life.
The inward ear of Jesus was in tune with the divine harmony; his inward eye looked upon a spiritual universe; his human consciousness was transmuted into divine understanding as he sought for and found his union with the Spirit of Life.
Is it not true that we seek wholeness in externals?
The friendship which comes through influencing people lacks that inwardness which makes friends without influencing them.
As we unify with our true Self, there is never any question about friendship.
As we unify with the invisible Substance of creation, there is never any question about supply.
As we unify with Wholeness, there is always health, joy & fulfillment.
As we are conscious of our union with the Love & Life of God within, we know our worth and we never fear death because we cannot be abandoned nor separated from this Love and this Life.
David Richo’s book, How to be An Adult in Relationships, discusses the five key elements of healthy relationships.
Attention: This is about giving your focused attention to your partner and others. It gives them a sense that they are important and in those moments, they are your highest priority. You are not allowing anything to distract you from listening fully to their thoughts, wants and feelings. You can know what a person values by looking at what they pay attention to. Knowing we are valued comes from having our loved ones & friends give us their full, respectful attention, especially when we most need it: At the end of a difficult day, when we have had an “aha” moment or we feel good about an accomplishment or feel bad about a struggle.
Acceptance: This is about being fully accepted. Being accepted for all our feelings, personality traits and quirks. Acceptance is an experience of being loved, at least in that moment, unconditionally. That's different from “I’ll love you when you stop being so angry, sad, anxious, childish ...” This is about getting to a place where we let go of needing others to be a certain way and really accept them, flaws and all, in the moment. This acceptance creates a sense of safety for them. They are Safe to be who they are now and be free from experiencing judgement or shame from us. They are free to choose again and grow in acceptance.
Appreciation: It is essential for our wellbeing. In fact, it is one of the key elements that sustains a relationship. For every complaint or criticism that occurs we can find 10 appreciations to balance it out. When we are feeling upset or angry it is often tied to feeling unappreciated. Appreciations can take many forms including acknowledgement of talents, skills and noticing when others are thoughtful and even vulnerable.
Affection: Affection can be expressed in words, a gaze or a gift and it can be expressed with hugs, kisses or holding hands. It is expressed with actions like bringing home flowers, completing a home project or waiting for the other to speak when they need to gather their thoughts. Maybe even give a 60 Second hug and see how that boosts feelings of wellbeing. People always feel warmed by shared affection.
Allowing: When we allow the other person to express themselves, and allow them to live their lives without a desire to control or manipulate them, our relationships prosper. Sometimes allowing is giving others the space they need and be away from us. Giving them the space to explore other interests or friendships without us feeling threatened. Allowing is a gift so that they return with more to share. When we allow, we are trusting the other and giving them our support to be their best selves.
We create healthy relationships when we give others the Five A's.
Attention, Acceptance, Appreciation, Affection and Allowing.
Dr. Bill Little
Imagine that you are a playwright and you have written the entire script for the play called ‘My Life.’ Yes, this means all the great moments with supportive people, and all the unhappy moments involving loss of love, health or wealth, etc. This is not easy to accept, but to move forward and complete the drama you will have to accept this. The truth be told, you have probably learned more from the disasters than the uplifting times.
Now imagine that your career as a playwright has an expansive nature to it, i.e., your ability to write great stories increases as time goes on and you gain life experience. I once saw a movie directed by a young person, perhaps in his twenties, and it was terrible. It was nothing but darkness and violence. I actually walked out because this person didn’t know yet that life is never totally dark and never totally light. It is a fascinating mixture. But he will grow to understand reality and may achieve success.
There is a source within us that fuels our career choices as well as many other things. Some call it spirit. So suppose that your spirit is gradually making you a better writer of ‘My Life.’
Eventually you will want to expand your life story into another dimension. This is often preceded by a feeling something like, ‘Help; I’m trapped in a human being!’ Daily life becomes very habitual and listless after a while. So the need for adventure and freshness and the feeling of awesomeness is very much a part of the human life story.
How will you spread your wings and fly?
Have you suppressed a yearning to paint or sing for too long?
Is your worldly mind telling you you’re too old for a new career?
This yearning is natural and can be seen to be your own spirit pushing against the walls of your personality.
Now here is where everything must, of necessity, become very strange and even mystical. Our spirit never ages. It is always leaving the past and projecting a great future. All it really requires is our agreement. Do the thing you think you can’t do. Partner with Life in such a way that you set a wonderful goal and give the rest of the details to your inner being so there is no struggling to reveal the new you. This is how you operated when you were young and knew no barriers.
The story of your life now may appear to have several barriers, but if you look closely, that’s only due to some idea that you have cultivated or someone else has told you. And then there is always the concept, ‘I’m not as young as I used to be.’ While it is true the body naturally ages, the spirit does not.
Plan your next life. What kind of parents would you like to have? What type of relationship would you seek knowing what you have learned in this life? Let’s take it even more into a rarely explored field. What period of time would you life to live in? Hundreds of years from now, humanity might have expanded into the solar system. How about designing asteroids that act as giant ships that travel between planets with magnificent interiors filled with natural beauty?
Have no doubt that you are Shiva. This means that you are all and everything throughout all time and space. And you are the playwright designing your play of consciousness. This is the real agenda for human beings. We are not just here to live a very limited set of dramatic scenes with other people we may or may not relate to. We are here to grow into our own deep nature and find a spirit that is eternally expanding into vast dimensions.
Try this now. Sit down and write out who you really want to be.
Dr. Bill Little
A Message from Dr. Bill Little
The most powerful practice in this time of pandemic is sheltering. Statistics show that people who shelter almost never become infected. But in many ways, sheltering seems going against our human nature. We feel as though we are social beings and we miss our friends and co-workers, etc. We long for the out-of-doors and sunshine.
But human nature is actually nothing more than ego. It is our limited self that feels locked up and therefore gets a sense of ‘cabin fever.’ If you have ever spent time in a spiritual community, an ashram or temple or spiritual retreat, you probably had some of the same feelings – at least the first few times you were there. These communities are designed to take you away from the world of the senses so you can focus on the inner world of your own being and develop more refined senses.
For example, our normal vision has an inner counterpart. Seeing with what has been called ‘the third eye’ is the ability to see the world as it is instead of how we think it is. Looking at a person with our outer vision rapidly accesses our memory banks and we really only see our own thoughts about them that we remember. But the third eye experience allows us to see them as they are, including their faults, and even their subconscious patterns which they may not be aware of at all. If you have ever been in the presence of an enlightened being, you know how naked you feel in front of them. All the other senses also have inner senses that correspond to them.
So when you contemplate this, sheltering might be one of the great gifts of covid 19. We have the time to be alone and shut down our preoccupation with the outer world. By focusing on something as simple as breathing for five or ten minutes we can withdraw and become more subtle. We can use our feeling nature to become aware of our own presence. This is to begin with so subtle that worldly inputs overwhelm our own presence. We may use the word ‘I’, but it doesn’t have much reality to us except perhaps some brief worldly role.
For example we might say, ‘I’m going to the garage to do some pitch and throw.’ By the time we finish the sentence, the sense of ‘I’ has been quickly identified with a body and some basic actions. The real feeling of ‘I’ is very short-lived if it happened at all. The ego is fine with this kind of objective definition of ‘self’. But this superficial imagery is not enough for our evolution. It is nothing more than a habitual way of identifying oneself.
If we are to grow and fulfill our destiny we will take sheltering as a blessing and use it to explore the inner realm of who we are. My first meditation teacher told us, ‘A yogi always turns everything to his/her advantage.’ The tried and true practices of chanting, meditation, and self-inquiry will guide us beyond the disease of being a human being. Just as we put on masks, wash hands, etc.,
Use the spiritual practices to your advantage.
Discover the astounding being at the center of you.
The greatest achievement was at first and for a time a dream.
The oak sleeps in the acorn;
The bird sleeps in the egg;
and the highest vision of the soul, a waking angel stirs.
Dreams are the seedlings of realities...
- James Allen
“As you see, sense & feel your inner most desire
as a place that already exists
And you begin to live there every day,
taking no thought for current circumstances,
No power on earth can stop you from becoming
that which you conceive & know yourself to be.”
Humanity would be farther along the evolutionary arc if we had accepted one simple truth: everything we can see is an idea held in temporary form by our agreement. Change the ideas and what look fixed, falls away like ripe fruit from its tree. That is what Emerson wrote about in The Oversoul. He said we have fallen too far in love with our senses to the exclusion of our Spiritual Intelligence. If one tries to convince others that what they are looking at, they helped create, they will call you insane. We simply dig in our heels and insist on a reality that is false.
I love what Ernest Holmes said and I often use this quote. In referring to the world of form he said, “it is as real as it needs to be.” I always add “to give us the experience of our ideas.” Our ideas about God, about the universe, about our origins, our inherent attributes, adds up to the realm we create. We walk around in our own consciousness, seeing through the lens of our construct.
There is also a “group think” or a collective consciousness, that contains the agreements we make about what is real. For example; a long time ago we agreed that we have dominion over Nature. That has led to its near destruction due to the fact that we misunderstood what dominion really means. It connotes responsibility for the ongoing function of the whole, but was thought to mean we could do whatever we wanted with it and it would survive anyway. How wrong we were. We are beginning to change our agreement about that and the effects will be very positive.
All the great teachers have told us “think about what you believe. Does it lend itself to the greater Good or does your belief promote fear and lack and ignorance?” We are either creating solutions or perpetuating problems.
Affirm: “I welcome new, healthy, spiritually sound ideas about everything!”
Stay tuned in,
Dr. Carol Carnes