Posted in Inspiration, Purpose driven, Spiritual awakening

Awakening to the journey

Awakening begins when you question everything you were ever taught; everything you’ve been told; and everything you thought you knew. So what is this journey we all set out on, where our lives are filled with experiences good and bad? Why do we feel like the underdog at times with things so hard and difficult?

My awakening process started a few years ago and posed some of the same questions listed above. Nothing seemed to fit anymore and nothing felt authentic to my true self. What does that even mean and what is it that becomes one’s authentic true self? You will know when you get the sense that your actions are mere compliance. When you do things against your heart and better judgement, but because everyone else is doing it, and therefore it must be the right thing to do. Perhaps you feel a great deal of unhappiness and restlessness. You are always looking forward to the future and all the things you are going to do and accomplish, not realizing the unrest you are giving to your current “Now.” You may feel at a loss, unsure of where to start and the whole picture is just too overwhelming.

People often tell me “Ah, you are so spiritual, and you are so lucky. I am so jealous of your outdoor adventures, how do you stay so positive, and are you ever in a bad mood.”. Spirituality is hard work, and it definitely is not the nice, quiet life. It means constantly being on fire. It means allowing yourself to be reduced to ashes, over and over again. Until you become the clearest and purest channel for spirit. What is to die is also give to rise. This journey requires many experiences, good and painful, many lessons and a willingness to be teachable. It also depends on how much you are willing to let go off, if you could give up your current conveniences and just take the plunge, jumping off the hamster wheel. It takes a lot of soul searching and analyzing what it is YOU truly want. Is the career something you truly aspire to, and why, or is it what you’ve been groomed to do, the status, your ego, what society expects of you? What are you rewards and will that change your current “Now” to a point you’d be happy with.

Chances are that no matter what it is you want, you will have to put in the work. Whether it requires long working hours with little time for yourself and anything else, or whether it is spiritual work in search of answering the “what if” questions and finding your purpose. It will require work and your staying power is determined by your dedication and desire to get there. Nothing ever comes easy and it would have no meaning if it did. I’ve had plenty of time over the years for my own soul searching and things are ever changing and moving along.

It’s been a journey of realizing that it isn’t so much about becoming anything. For me it continues to be a journey about unbecoming everything that isn’t really me, and shedding the layers of social conditioning, old programs, and what I was once taught. It’s an unlearning of values and beliefs that were never mine, but to seek the ultimate truth that is in line with myself.

Why put in all that work and what’s the purpose? Because it’s the only way worthwhile in an attempt to become who I was always meant to be.

All things start the same, with one single step.

Posted in Inspiration, Spiritual awakening

The awakening process

Picture from my birthday trip. View of Half Dome from Olmstead point – Yosemite National Park.

Spiritual awakening…ah, a topic that seems to bring together likeminded and kindred spirits. Souls in search of answers, to find validations or a sign along the way that encourages us to keep going. People who question the status quo when it comes to their own life. It goes out to the “what if (ers), is that it, now what, and there’s got to be more to life” kind of beings.

Spiritual awakening is a way/path that is so different and unique to all of us, yet shares so many similarities. Once you find the courage and took that first step, you are on your way and the awakening process has begun. Don’t expect this to be an easy journey, because it will be quite the opposite. You will be a tested many times, stretched to your limits, and you fill find out what you are made of. It’s hard work but those willing to put in the effort will find a reward much greater than you could ever imagine. On the outside or if you have travelled for awhile, it’s easy to see and recognize all it’s patterns. The climbs and struggles, the storms and challenges, and the smooth sailings when everything seems downhill once more.

Along the path we meet various places that become our initial destination. It’s not until we take in all the wisdom of what that place has to offer, until we learn all of our lessons needed, that we can move on to a new place along the journey to our soul destination. And it is only when we, the students are ready that our teacher will appear. It can’t be rushed and there is no time limits, you simply move along when you are ready, despite of you thinking that you are. Remember that you can never know that you received everything meant for you to learn until so have. So in a way it is about being willing to listen and to learn, trusting the process, surrendering all control, shedding the fear, and opening your heart wide.

According to Jake Woodard we undergo 4 stages and although I have written about the stages before (7 stages similar or more in detail), it’s worth it to take a look as we might identify with something new and different.

Stage 1: The birthing phase

You start to awaken normally by experiencing pain or trauma. This causes you to shed the layers of illusions. Welcome to earth school.

Stage 2: The crawling phase

You’re very uncomfortable in this phase. You are learning many lessons, some of which are painful. You may feel great frustration and despair.

Stage 3: The rebirth

You’re being called to go inward to seek more answers. At this stage you are being initiated to be given your wings. You’re learning who you are and why you are here.

Stage 4: Taking flight

You’ve shed the veils of illusion. You’ve returned to your childlike innocence. You’ve purified your soul and are now soaring with your reclaimed wings.

Does this ring true for you?

Posted in Awakening, Awareness, Spiritual awakening

The spiritual immune system by Henri Bergson

Fortunately, some are born with spiritual immune systems that sooner or later give rejection to the illusory worldview grafted upon them from birth through social conditioning. They begin sensing that something is amiss, and start looking for answers. Inner knowledge and anomalous outer experiences show them a side of reality others are oblivious to, and so begins their journey of awakening. Each step of the journey is made by following the heart instead of following the crowd and by choosing knowledge over the evils of ignorance.

Who else can relate to this?

Posted in Inspiration, Spiritual awakening

Spiritual Awakening Stages

With so much uncertainty and confusion right now, we look to understanding, a little hope and perhaps some reassurance that everything will be ok. It also makes me think of our own personal journeys, trying to understand things, and sometimes even feeling alone with nobody to share or relate to you. I thought this might be a good time to repost the 7 stages of spiritual awakening.

  1. Unhappiness and emptiness
  2. Perception shifts
  3. Seeking answers and meaning
  4. Finding answers and experiencing breakthroughs
  5. Disillusionment and feeling lost
  6. Deeper inner work
  7. Integration, expansion, Joy
Posted in Inspiration, Spiritual awakening

The shift

As you are shifting, you will begin to realize that you are not the same person you used to be. The things you used to tolerate have become intolerable. When you once remained quiet, you are now speaking your truth. What you once battled and argued, you are now choosing to remain silent because being at peace has taken priority. You are beginning to understand the value of your voice and there are some situations that no longer deserve your time, energy, and focus.

Posted in Inspiration, Life, Spiritual awakening

The Journey…

I say “Namaste” because I like what it means, not because I am Hindu….

A lot of people think I am a Christian because they think I talk about Christian values, but the truth is I am really talking about Human Values….

I’ve been asked if I am a Buddhist, just because I have discovered Inner peace….

A lot of my friends are Pagans and they think I am too because I say that being in Nature is my idea of going to Church….

Do you want to know what I really am? It’s very simple. I don’t need a label to define me. I am a piece of the Universe, Sentiment and Manifested and I AM AWAKE….

~Paul Enso Hillman

Posted in Anxiety, Spiritual awakening

Finding your voice

It can take years to find your voice and your true authenticity, where you belong. I can’t help but wonder if some may never make it, because I know that the path is steep, and not for the faint of hearts. You may have heard the call to follow your true heart, but the timing was not right and something held you back. “It will pass” you told yourself, unsure of what you were feeling. But it didn’t pass, did it, and instead it grew only stronger, so strong in fact that you could no longer ignore it.

You had no clue how your new found feelings could fit into a modern day society with certain behavioral expectations that don’t always embrace “The different”. How your taught values, morales, and guidelines could align, while you were still repressing your own calling. You didn’t know how to forget everything you’ve learned in order to be reborn into your own purposeful, self fulfilling, soul being. The process was long and hard, you stood out like a sore thumb (you thought), different but unique, beautiful and strong in the eyes of your own tribe. You couldn’t see it, you just weren’t “there” yet. Unable to recognize your worth and beauty, you only saw it as a hindrance, as if something was wrong with you. You faced confusing times where you questioned everything and where you felt lost and alone. It caused sleepless nights, loneliness, many tears, wishing to be different, to be accepted, and a heaping load of anxiety that threatened to crush you. You yearned to fit in, without realizing that it would cost you your uniqueness, your own special blueprint in order to do so. A price so high that it could never bring you happiness, nor bring you closer to who you really are. You were caught in a vicious cycle that was suffocating the pretending “You” without room for the true “You”. It all became an act, losing yourself a little more with each day, to the point of anxiety and depression. But if you are reading this, then you haven’t given up and I celebrate the true warrior spirit within you, because I know it hasn’t been easy.

My wish for you is to get there, to find your true voice and to embrace it. To stay the course and never falter, to realize that you have chased the wrong ideals, and that you are beautiful in every way. You are complete. I wish you the courage to stand by your dreams, to reach for the stars when others abandon you, when the path seems lonely and hard, and to cheer on the true desires within your heart. I wish you to never forget to listen to that voice deep inside of you and that the days have passed when you ignored it. To make a conscious choice to no longer dismiss the call out of fear of what others might think, and to recognize it as your true soul path. My wish for you is to find the strength to get up more times than you have fallen and to always view your glass as half full. To remember the silver lining in every adverse situation and to see the lessons for growth instead of the bitterness that is caused by pain.

Your voice will be loud and clear when you decide to embrace the weird, the wild, the non conformist side of your heart that has so many traits, values, and gifts. And believe it or not, there are others just like you, gorgeous, wild, and beautiful who have walked the path before you. The choice is yours and in the end our most treasured memories always have something a little wild about them, don’t they? Remember that everything you need is already deep inside of you.

~Namaste

Posted in Spiritual awakening, Spirituality

Dharma Dragon

While landing in Iceland, I had a little layover and made my way over to one of the gift shops. With no extra time to explore the scenery of Iceland, I at least wanted a souvenir that would remind me of my layover. I’m always intrigued and fascinated by the treasures of different countries and cultures, so it was a no brainer to do a little exploring. I had no idea about the money conversion, but how bad could a bottle of water, a small square wooden guidance stave and a journal cost, right? Fifty some dollars to be exact once the receipt was handed to me. I’m not sure if I would have paid that price had I known, but I wasn’t ready to part with my new found treasure either and walked on. I’ve previously written about my guidance stave and I feel it has protected me so far. I feel that I am somehow finding my way in all of this.

The journal that attracted my attention was one of a kind and the only one I could find. It immediately drew me in and I quickly put others back on the shelf that I had considered for purchase. There was no doubt that this one was “The one”. The graphics were mesmerizing, from the colors, to the various levels of texture on the front and back. It looked multi dimensional and the shapes would dance in the reflection of the light. The inside pages were unruled which I usually don’t like as much as lines, but it was still perfect. As you already know, I purchased it. I was drawn to it despite the lines and today I learned that it was printed from forest paper. Did I feel a connection to Mother Earth? I am actually glad now that it has no lines. Sometimes you just need to draw outside the lines, and this seems as one such journey where no lines are required.

The journal has been lying around since I got here, and feels a bit like a sacred piece to me. It was special from the beginning, and was not to be wasted with random scatter. It required something special….Context with special meaning. The last couple of days have been special to me. Special when it comes to Mom and special to my own personal healing, growth and journey. I looked at the journal today and started my day smiling. I had failed to see that the journal is called the Dharma Dragon which relates to Buddhism. No wonder I felt drawn. I read up on the Dharma today, and I know that there is more meaning yet to be understood. I will touch on this when time is right and the full message is delivered.

The art was produced by Android Jones and is a result of ancient spiritual practices meeting modern day digital art. It is said that his art asks the viewer to focus on the potential of awakening, the power of the ancient third eye and the early reverberations of the time that lies before us. Jones calls himself a digital painter and is renowned for his multidimensional, spiritual driven art and performances, as well as the expanded states of consciousness they evoke. A modern day shaman with a sense of untapped potential and limitless imagination. Jones invites you to push the boundaries of perception and awaken to the possibilities of your own third eye.

It has been a frightening time and never have I been more out of my elements as I have been over the past weeks. Never have I felt more vulnerable, alone and dependent. Never have I felt more lost and found at the same time. I’ve been afraid, stretched and pulled in multiple directions. Sometimes feeling as if my heart was ripped out and other times yearning to feel every emotion. The reason for it is because I know that this is the journey of a lifetime, one that could make or break me.

The timing is right to bring this journal into use and I’m ready to push the boundaries. I am ready to make it vs. letting it break me, and for the first time since this has started, I feel sure of it. I will not accept the truths that are forced if they don’t meet my own say of how the story is going to end. Right now is a mere waiting period, a time to get acclimated, a time to remember that drastic times take drastic measures and the end I envision looks happy and I see Mom smiling.

Posted in Inspiration, Spiritual awakening, Spirituality

A Zen Moment

These were the actual colors of a sunset I got to see last year. I was lucky enough to witness it’s glory, and the timing was perfectly synchronized as I was driving home from work. A little earlier or minutes later, and I could have easily missed it, but luckily not so, and the universe saved a little magic for me that day.

This morning a reminder of such memory flashed on my Facebook account and the sight captured my heart just like it did the first time. Of course seeing it in person was magnified and even better, but this picture comes pretty close and is worth sharing. What stands out from looking at it besides the beauty of the sheer sight, was the way it made me feel.

It was a while ago that a interest sparked about Buddhism. I related to many of the beliefs and teachings, the way of being and a way of life. I believed in Nirvana, of changing my stars and my way of thinking. To be optimistic and always keep hope alive. To believe in the good of all mankind and to only judge when proven guilty. And not even then most of the time, as judgement is not for me and we often don’t know all the reasons to accurately form an opinion or judge someone’s behavior. I started to believe in each other, that we all have something to bring to the table. Those foundations had always been within me, but were ready to reach new depths. I had already found my still in Mother Nature, but my senses to see and hear deepened. I witnessed more of the simple things, a flower, wildlife, clouds, rocks, branches and other things that could be a part of some sort of project that would magically come together at a time it was meant to reveal it self. It always did, and most of the time I didn’t know why I felt so compelled to collect something until a later time when a beautiful project came full turn as if the piece was always meant for it. I was always tickled pink and overcome with joy when it happened. To create something with my own hands, no matter how simple it might have been. I already felt guided back then, guided to pick up that piece, somehow knowing that I would need it later.

I became more still within at that time. I felt more relaxed and more at peace, although life with all its troubles and curve balls remained the same. I know that I was going through the various steps of spiritual awakening, and the one I enjoyed the most was the third step and the journey of discovery. (I’ve wrote about all the steps under the tag of spiritual awakening, just in case you care to read how they applied to me). It was quite the journey and each step brought special meaning. My perception had changed already and I was seeing and hearing things other couldn’t. I seemed to be more in tune, and was seeking to understand the why’s and what had happened.

It is hard to put into words, but having arrived at this kind of attention and being in tune with my surroundings is something I’m very grateful for. It gives me the greatest pleasures to witness those things. To be able to pause and take a moment without being so caught up that I wold rush by and miss the moment. I’m grateful that these things have become a priority in my life and that they bring so mich bliss and joy. That my mind constantly searches for such moments, whether it be signs from my spirit animals, Mother Nature with its beauty or even oracle cards and tarot. That I’m ok with that they are different than what most others would consider exciting and that I’m not afraid to stand up for their meaning, even if it means that I have to stand alone. Yep, I think that trees are beautiful and magnificent.

Being able to witness this beautiful sunset was such a Zen moment for me and here is what the dictionary has to say about Zen.

Zen = relaxed and not worrying about things that you cannot change.

A form of Buddhism, originally developed in Japan, that emphasizes that religious knowledge is achieved through emptying the mind of thoughts and giving attention to only one thing, rather than by reading religious writing.

Giving attention to just one thing is we’re I found my Zen and where my peace was finally found. It was then that the load became lighter although the struggles stayed the same and didn’t just magically disappeared. I believe it was a major shift in how I see the world, my experiences, the tests and lessons, the good and the not so good, the simplicity’s that bring the greatest joy and the more is less concept these days. I’m grateful for that experience and for falling in love with a tree, a beautiful flower, a little critter and sometimes a magical sunset. I’m grateful to be a dreamer at heart.