Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Empower me

Empower me
to be a bold participant,
rather than a timid saint in waiting,
in the difficult ordinariness of now;
to exercise the authority of honesty;
rather than to defer to power,
or deceive to get it;
to influence someone for justice,
rather than impress anyone for gain;
and, by grace, to find treasures
of joy, of friendship, of peace
bidden in the fields of the daily
you give me to plow.

Ted Loder
Affirmations and Invocations

(Hat tip: Cerissa)

Friday, January 20, 2006

Rise to the level of love

Another way that you love your enemy is this: When the opportunity presents itself for you to defeat your enemy, that is the time which you must not do it. There will come a time, in many instances, when the person who hates you most, the person who has misused you most, the person who has gossiped about you most, the person who has spread false rumors about you most, there will come a time when you will have an opportunity to defeat that person. It might be in terms of a recommendation for a job; it might be in terms of helping that person to make some move in life. That's the time you must do it. That is the meaning of love. In the final analysis, love is not this sentimental something that we talk about. It's not merely an emotional something. Love is creative, understanding goodwill for all men. It is the refusal to defeat any individual. When you rise to the level of love, of its great beauty and power, you seek only to defeat evil systems. Individuals who happen to be caught up in that system, you love, but you seek to defeat the system.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

(Hat tip oyster)

Friday, January 06, 2006

Don't take for granted the time you share with others

The Rational Creature:
An acquaintance of mine recently died. I can't say "friend", because we really weren't that close, and it didn't strike me until his passing that I would actually miss him. We both worked towards a common cause, and that was really our only link. But here I sit, thinking about the last time I saw him, and what I now know was the finality of that moment, and I feel bad for not being more congenial to the guy, for not being kinder. I didn't treat him with contempt or anything of the sort; but I wasn't as nice as I could have been. He was a good guy with a good heart and he loved his church and family, and I have found that his absence has affected me, and that I'm genuinely sad to see he is no longer with us.

"Let us thank God ahead of time for whatever He forsees is pleasing to Him, leaving everything at his divine disposal, including, with all its circumstances, when, where, and how He may be pleased to dispose the events of our death."
~Blessed Solanus Casey~

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Karmic charm

This newsletter and the work I do as a life coach, is all about helping you become consciously aware of your thoughts and actions and to translate that awareness into creating the life you want. I believe that the good you put out to the world will come back to you. All it takes is a little faith, patience, and diligence.

Let's take a closer look at karma again. The fourth law of karma is like the inverse of the third law of karma. If the third law states that no experience can be had unless a previous imprint for that experience was planted, the fourth law states that every imprint planted must produce a corresponding experience. As stated by Geshe Michael Roach in "The Diamond Cutter':

Once an imprint is planted in the mind, it must lead to an experience: no imprint is ever wasted.

This reminds me of high school physics. I recall my teacher telling us that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. With karma, it's not exactly the same but the key, with respect to the fourth law, is that every time you produce a thought or action (good or bad), the experience will come back to you. It must.

Consider that the jerks in your life are producing bad karma by being jerks. Therefore, the karma will come back to them and they will suffer, whether or not you react. It's like there are "Karma Police" (a song title by the band Radiohead) who are out there catching the perpetrators and making them pay for their harmful acts.

This month I encountered an aggressive pedestrian while bicycling on the bridge. The man purposely stepped into my path nearly causing me (and other cyclists) to fall into the automobile traffic. When I explained that what he was doing was dangerous, he told me to move along before he pushed me into the traffic.

Shortly after the incident, I noticed a couple things. First, I realized that I had caused anger and frustration to others to be experiencing it in this moment. It had nothing to do with the way I was riding my bike. Second, I noticed that this man had experienced a lot of bad karma to be creating even more bad karma and threatening my life. Imagine what it takes to threaten another's life! I truly feel for this man.

The next time you experience a jerk in your life, try not to react. Take a deep breath and let the anger and frustration pass. It always does. Then remind yourself that the jerk will suffer for his/her wrong-doings. You may even feel contented or somewhat righteous by this. But to really make a difference, feel for the other person. Know that he will suffer. Know that he is creating bad karma that will come back to him. Know that he is simply reacting to his circumstances, which is the opposite of what I am urging you to do.

Do this once every day. Feel for the jerk. And if you get caught up in the moment and react, forgive yourself and feel for the other person afterwards. The more you do this, the less you will experience jerks. Your compassion will help others so they don't need to get upset and take it out on you. It's preventative.

Remind yourself by writing it down or giving away a dollar every time you feel for someone who has created bad karma in your life. Or, transfer a stone from one pocket to the other as a reward. Do whatever works for you. And keep passing along the good karma.

Karma is like the salt and pepper shakers at a huge dinner table. Pass it along!

Inspirations Newsletter