Living By Faith

There are those who know and those who don’t, either way they share a common denominator…Faith. We can knowingly move forward and unknowingly move forward ultimately arriving on time. The key to arriving is faith.

Faith is the knowing that everything will work out, in your favor, even when the current situation does not dictate as so. When everyone gives up, the believers press on. When we activate our faith we essentially are tapping into a universal law of attraction.

As a man thinketh, so is He.~Abraham

If a person continues to have thoughts “I am too busy,” “I cannot do that,”We are never going to make it,” or “my life is going nowhere,” than the basic laws will assuredly grant the persons wish. If, however the person knows that everything will occur or arrive exactly as it is intended, filling this persons life with more abundance…then it shall equally be so.

We now return to Ani Po, as she witnesses the Warrior and Pilgrim living by faith (Note: this story is based on true events):

One day Ani Po was driving with her friend Mamani, when her friend noticed the gas gauge was lit and needle on empty. Alarmed she expressed her concern to Ani Po. While Ani Po was not worried, Mamani began to get anxious. Ani Po told her about a similar situation and how everything turned out in her favor…

Ani Po: I was driving a Holy Man to a destination about two to three hours away. He was to giving a sermon to a congregation. Offering to drive him, we were on our way. Only thirty minutes into the drive I noticed the gas ’empty’ gauge light come on and the needle was indeed on empty.

To not raise alarm, keeping it to myself and hoping to find a filling station soon. At this time, thoughts of determination filled my being and somehow knew we would arrive safely and on time.

Even though I had thoughts of arriving on time, I informed my passenger…

“Father, I just want to let you know that we are on empty and have been for some time.”

To which he replied: “Are you worried?”

“No, something is telling me we are going to make it.”

“Then I am not worried. The Lord will get us there safely and I can feel your faith is strong.”

They arrived safely and on time. In pure joy and amazement, slight disbelief, Ani Po gave thanks to that which needs no label, “Thank you For showing me The Way.” Ani Po saw firsthand the power of faith as she wholeheartedly believed she would arrive exactly when they were intended to…thankfully it was the time her passenger was expected to arrive.

During the ceremony, Ani Po whispered to parishioners, “Do you have any gas I could use to get me to a filling station?” After numerous replies someone alerted Ani po, “there is a filling station just a half of a block away.”

Ani Po: “still not sure I will make it as we just drove two and half hours on fumes all the while the gas ’empty’ light was on.”

Still with no luck finding gas from a parishioner, she starts her truck and drives to the filling station with no troubles. She could have merely walked to the filling station, but instead she knew that her truck would start yet again and arrive on time. After arriving safely, filling up her tank, getting in and driving her friend home to the monastery, they both agreed they had witnessed a miracle.

As Ani Po finished telling her story, Mamani interrupts, “that’s great, but I do not think we are going to make it.”

Just then the engine stopped and they were stranded without gas. While Mamani released her anger, Ani Po just smiled, knowing that in a moment they would be rescued. While the Warrior (Ani Po) remains calm during adversity, the Pilgrim (Mamani) loses hope, feeling lost once again. Ani Po reached over and laid her hand upon her friends, “Mamani it is going to be ok. Help will arrive for us very soon.” Timely, a stranger taps on the window asking if they needed gas.

So what is the difference in these situations? What happened differently between Ani Po and Mamani? Was it coincidence or a miracle? Could it have happened differently? All of these questions remain unanswered, but Ani Po knows better as she lives purely by faith. In doing so, She arrives exactly when she is intended to…no longer giving her reason to doubt The Way.

Ani Po’s situation was extreme and can be disputed, but still remains unexplained. Her and her passenger drove on empty for two and half hours, purely on faith. With this lesson in her back pocket, she understands the meaning of faith…lending more hope that All is Good.

Living by faith, we find hope;

Through hope, we find Love;

Finding Love;

We find The Way.

~Ani Po

Stepping into the Canvas purely by faith. In faith we see hope painted on the horizon, walking towards it we find Love. Even during times of adversity, it is the Warrior who asserts, “even though my current situation looks bleak, I know that it will end in a silver-lining, painting The Canvas as I see it.”

A Tale of Two Men

This is a short story about two men with varying viewpoints on life. While neither is wrong, only one of them finds happiness…

 

One day a man decided it was time to venture out into the world and see what else the universe had to offer. Not feeling content with his current residency, he hoped to find better accommodations.

Approaching a nearby village, he meets an elder of the village.

“Excuse me sir!”

“Yes.” The elder replies.

“My name is Julio and interested in potentially relocating to your town. Can you tell me a bit about your town?”

The elder asks,”what are you looking for?”

The man replies, “well, I am looking for a place that will bring me happiness and gives me a sense of purpose.”

Elder replies, “why don’t you tell me a bit about where you are from.”

Interrupting the elder, “what kind of people live here. I mean, are they happy?”

Elder replies, “what kind of people live in your village?”

“oh, they are the meanest, nastiest people who I have known and that is why I am looking to move somewhere more pleasant.”

The elder sadly, “I am sorry to report, but the people who live here sound just like wherever you came.”

To his dismay, the man left and never returned.

 

Oddly enough, another gentleman arrives at the village and greets the same elder.

“Good day to you sir.”

The elder replies, “It is a fine day in deed.”

“could you tell me what kind of people live in this town? I am considering relocating from my current place of residency.”

The elder smiles, as if it was very familiar in conversation, “why don’t you tell me about the people the live in your current village.”

“oh, well they are nicest people I have ever known. It will be sad to move, but I am looking for a change of scenery and looking to live somewhere similar to my home.”

The elder smiles brighter, “you are in luck, as it sounds like the same types of people we have here.”

The man wasted no time, packed up his things and moved to the nearby village.

 

While one man remained lost as a pilgrim, searching for something outside of his boundaries in hopes of finding happiness, the other was as sure as the Warrior…accepting happiness wherever he goes. One mans viewpoint was of misery, while the other found a silver-lining in every cloud. One man continues searching for peace and happiness, while the other merely chooses it.

Stepping into the Canvas with a new attitude…One of happiness, seeing all as good. Even in times of suffering it is possible to find good…we just have to look a little harder. Do you see people as irritating or judgmental? Or do you see them Friendly, caring human beings? Whichever you choose, it is merely reflecting the mirror you carry…

 

Original story told by Wayne Dyer, shortened for this blog.

 

True Leadership

When we think of leadership, our attention goes to the obvious: a person who directs a group or organization towards a certain goal of that institution. What we fail to see are the ‘True Leaders’ who quietly go to work day in and day out. While the obvious leader is just that and often recognized for their accomplishments; the not so obvious is the person who stands in the background, allowing his team to thrive and grow…essentially cultivating future leaders.

The pilgrim once thought he had to lead troops into battle but now, on the path of Warrior, merely allows them to shine. As a young pilgrim he lied, manipulated, and often asked the unimaginable of his team. As Warrior he knows a true leader is one who trusts in his team, allowing them to use their own creative gifts and giving praise where deserved.

When I began writing of the Pilgrim and Warrior, I saw two sides to every human: one being a Pilgrim Lost and in search of truth; the other being the Warrior who has found truth, allowing others to go ahead of him remaining in peace. At the beginning of our Pilgrim versus Warrior theme I wrote about the Pilgrim being a He; the Warrior being a She. This was purely a self-reflection of who I was and where I wanted to be. The He representing the Masculine side and the She representing the Feminine side. We spend most of our lives as man or woman, but at a turning point in our lives we reflect where we are going in the future and, hopefully, reconnect with our opposing self. If being a man, we are to find our sacred feminine within. Being a woman, we are to find the masculine. When we learn that we are not whole without the other, we learn our truest identity…we are one. While the Pilgrim is able to lead others, it is the Warrior who stands firmly in what he believes but allows others to pass him by. Knowing what I know, I see true leaders all around me…

Our mothers quietly maintained a certain order of things, graciously cultivating environments of growth. Selflessly giving everyday and making sacrifices without ever getting anything in return. Some see the rewards immediate, some never receive, but continue to give of themselves wholeheartedly. Think back into history…even the great leaders of our past, had silent leaders backing them. The wives who stood behind them, while their partners shared their vision with the world.It is the silent Warrior who has true leadership. A true leader is one who knows The Way, but allows others to lead.

Stepping into the Canvas we allow ourselves to be who we came here to be. Afraid no longer, we step with care but with authority. Not looking for praise, but what is right. Mindfully…we are aware.

The Lost Decoder Ring

When the Warrior was a young pilgrim, he had a “secret decoder” ring. This ring allowed him to discover secret messages not be seen by naked eye, further allowing him to leave secret messages for others who use this “secret” technology of the decoder ring.

With other pilgrims joined the “secret” decoder ring club, they left messages for other pilgrims only they could decode. This activity raised vibrations of the pilgrims, allowing them for that moment to feel good about themselves and their purpose of leaving messages for other pilgrims. What were these secret messages? Mostly it was nonsense, but in these moments of decoding…they felt good.

The concept of discovering something élite in their secret group is no different from modern-day discovery. We all seek the discovery of truth and try various groups in search of  truth. While as pilgrims we discovered, to many viewed as nonsense, the secret to something far greater than we once imagined.

As adult pilgrims we continue our quest, until ultimately find our truth. “The seekers shall find their answers.” Whether it is in one group or another, we eventually come to the common thread binding us all together…that is Love. As young pilgrims, whether we realized it or not, we found that love in our made up secret messages. As adult pilgrims we seemed to have lost that commonality…thus the journey for peace continues.

The Warrior is familiar with this concept of truth and lives a virtuous path. No longer subscribing to one way as The Way, he adopts THE WAY. This truth spoken by many masters before: Lao Tzu wrote of it as The Way or familiarly known as The Tao; Christ spoke of it more boldly, stating He was The Way; Martin Luther King Jr. Spoke of Brotherly Love as The Way.

When the Warrior asked another  young Warrior what it meant to him, this lad spoke, “so many groups say their way is the only way, condemning others who do not subscribe to their groups. The Way does not condemn anyone, only encourages new growth within the self. Often The Way gets twisted into allowing killing in the name of our Father…do they not know we all have the same Father? An example of this is two children, born of the same parents but killing because they think their father is superior…when they were born into this world by the same flesh. Same mother, same father but harm another to gain favor of their own flesh and blood. On the spiritual level of the Heart, we are all God’s children.”

The Warrior smiles as he knows this to be truth and further asks, “why do we continue to divide?”

The lad responds, “simple Law of Nature. It is our nature to do divide. Every cell in our body divides, every plant divides and produces more offspring furthering the division through offspring, we humans do the same thing. What we fail to realize is that we are all one. Oneness begets behavior of togetherness and eliminates the further division. Having oneness does not mean we will not divide, as it is written in the laws that we will naturally divide. What it fails to explain is that we can continue to divide, but adopt the concept of coming together as one. Failing to see oneness, we fall to another Law…that of decay. Everything decays in life and we are not immune to this, but what we further forget is through our own death new life is born…completing the circle of life.”

So what are we to do? “We are to allow natural progression of life continue, but remain in harmony as nature will surely take its course. We enter into this world with nothing, leave this world with nothing. In between those two points we are to make everything of nothing. Live life to the fullest and encourage others to live in harmonious fashion, eliminating all hate or the burning need of finding truth. Instead of division, we all live in harmony abiding by The Way. The sad truth is that the leaders of our countries fall to disbelief that we are to divide and conquer.”

While the pilgrim lives in fear continuing the terrible divide and conquer mentality, the Warrior merely follows The Way. The Way is truth, it is the beginning and the end, it is the Law of Nature.

Stepping into the Canvas, the Warrior abandons the belief of killing in the name of our Father. Instead adopting truth…Love in the name of our Father. When we live in the name of Love, the necessity for a decoder ring ceases to exist.

Remaining Calm During the Storm

We all have moments where we escape to somewhere else, in hopes of finding tranquility, but lose the battle in finding peace. Some however have found peace even during difficult times. How does one deal with their own stress? How does one deflect the misery of another?

When we have a ‘bad day’ three options present: 1) stay miserable, continuing to attract more anger; 2) ignore the stressors in hopes that it will pass, potentially attracting more anger; 3) walk away, centering the self in breathing. Sounds pretty easy, but for many it is not while  conditioned to remain in misery…this is their reality.

Do we have to stay in our own reality of self-inflicted misery? What about others who create misery for us? Whether it is self-inflicted or brought on by another’s actions, we can change our response. For the self-inflicted pain we have option two or three, with the preferred method being number three. Stress implemented by actions of another can be more difficult to handle, as we are often in disbelief of their thoughtless actions…Really?!

Yesterday, an angry person who creates friction when he speaks quickly changed the tone of our day. With a pre-conceived notion of ignoring the person today, he came to me and apologized. In this case I chose option two and ignored him, in hopes that it will pass…whew! Next time I will be better at dealing with another person’s anger. Lesson learned! What if he had not apologized? By my ignoring him further, this would only create more tension between us. By not apologizing to me, two options then present: let it go or tell him how I felt. Thankfully he apologized and we didn’t have to cross that road.

The gentleman was ‘tired’ of going through Radiation Treatments. As many patients experience fear of their last treatments and the unknown, they express fear in their own way. His was through anger.

Remaining calm and instilling peace as a common ground, I established a new reality for him. His guilt came back to haunt him. Causing guilt, he apologized for his behavior. Again I say…whew!

How do you handle difficult people? Is it proper to return the anger? Returning anger only creates more anger. We are not defined by our actions, but define by how we deal with others during their difficult times and our own difficulties.

While the Pilgrim takes thing personally reacting from anger, only finding more anger. The Warrior allows others to express their emotions without absorption of anger, remaining in harmony with himself and the collective whole.

Stepping into the canvas identifying many colors of the rainbow, we have the ability to avoid misery brought out by a storm. Remaining calm we find ourselves instinctively wanting to dance in the rain.

The Average Joe

Being comfortable with one’s own skin can be a challenge. A person either chooses greatness or chooses the path of an average Joe. The average Joe doesn’t subscribe to over achievement or settle for mediocrity. Instead we will find him blending in with majority.

This posting was inspired by local public radio host Ben Merens and his guest David Martin. At Issue with Ben Merens invited David Martin to discuss his bi-weekly humor column and latest book Dare to Be Average.

David opens, “many will not become super stars and it’s ok to be average.” I wanted to call in and ask him, “doesn’t deciding that you are going to stay average therefore place you in a class of above average?” It is my opinion that by stating and accepting average, self-realization thereby makes you above average through not following others whom pressure thinking of greatness. The self-actualized are happy wherever they choose to be. Personally I do not think any one person is average, as we all have are own hidden talents. We simply choose to use them or we don’t.

While the Pilgrims worry about whether they are making the grade or justing getting by and whether the choice is good or bad, the Warrior does not worry about greatness or being average. He merely does what is in his heart, following his dreams and leaving the details for the Universe to fill in. The self-actualized warrior does not worry about pleasing anyone but himself.

Sounds pretty selfish doesn’t it? While many see the warrior as selfish, only worrying about himself, they fail to see the virtuous acts performed on a daily basis: Random acts of kindness, selfless giving of his time and unconditional Love for humanity.  It is through giving that he receives.

Stepping into the Canvas daring to be average, we unknowingly place ourselves into a group of self-mastery. Whether a superstar in the spotlight or an average Joe under the radar, there never really is such a thing as being average. Every person is unique in their own way and every person has a choice to be who they want. Whatever the choice…they are who they are…and have a choice to be whomever they choose…

 

 

As a Man Thinketh, So is He

Have you ever wondered what the world would be like if we lived in harmony? What would happen to the suffering? The pain? It is said the world is changed with a single thought, beginning at the level of the self. We cannot change the world on our own, but collectively we can change the face of the earth.

 

The Warrior is not new to this concept as he has learned with every interaction the effects are felt across the globe. He also knows the laws of nature continue to counterbalance the Love  shared at every meeting. The law of nature strives for balance and if there’s abundance of positivity, there is an equal force of negativity. This does not stop him from spreading peace, for he knows that one day balance will be restored within every human being. When balance is restored at the individual level, balance is restored at the global level.

 

If every person would sit down for 30 minutes, the world would be at balance at a cost of inhibiting growth. Through our daily actions growth is restored…in death there is new life. Sitting for 30 minutes would surely stop the earth from rotating. The remedy? …do nothing. In doing nothing, balance is restored.

 

The Warrior, while sharing kindness, maintains his daily activities while remaining vitreous in his daily events. The shift he chose is seeing a life he wants to live and doing so. He achieves life through a single thought.

 

Exercising the power of thought, he creates a self-world of peace and harmony. While many see it as delusional, he sees it as it was written. Our lives are meant to be whatever we want it to be…why wouldn’t we want to live in happiness?

 

The suffering, while all around us, does not have to control our lives…only allow self-growth.

 

Stepping into the Canvas the Warrior co-creates the world around him. Through his thoughts he becomes the painter, his actions the painted, his gratitude the canvas. Take on an attitude of painter, the painted and the canvas itself. We are a part of the collective whole making us one with the canvas.