About what matters

Writing about what really matters

Category: Prayers

Beaming love to the world

Heart 2

In recent meditations, I’ve been getting some intimations of what’s next for me in the new year. One of the primary things I’m expecting is a (figurative) expansion or enlarging of my heart. Today I made a SoulCollage card (above) to represent this idea.

On Christmas evening, after all the festivities were complete, I was shuffling a stack of books on my ottoman to get to a reference at the very bottom, when I was drawn to another book in the stack, Sonia Choquette’s Ask Your Guides. I flipped it open and read a few chapters, one of which was about light beings. (Each chapter of the book addresses a different type of guide.)

In this chapter, Sonia writes about encountering light beings who encourage her and her audiences to help raise our planet’s collective vibration from fear to love–a change they characterize as necessary for our survival.

I’m sure you’ve noticed the rampant fear that often surrounds us, in the form of negativity, prejudice, judgment, war, existential dread, hoarding, lack of generosity, and many other forms of ugliness and unhappiness. At Christmas time we refer to the spirit of fear as Scrooge or the Grinch, but it’s with us all year round. Perhaps you’ve wanted to do something about it. Maybe you’d like to see more optimism, sharing, positive solutions, openness, acceptance, peace, and flow in our world. If you’re reading this, I’m pretty certain you do feel that way.

Here is something you can do about it. I have begun doing this as part of my meditation practice.

To get started, place your hands over your heart, and imagine the energy of your heart chakra arcing clockwise through your hands, around your heart, and back again. You can ask for the support of all light beings who are interested in helping us raise our vibration in this little corner of the universe, to strengthen this energy. After a few minutes, extend your hands in a way that’s comfortable for you, to beam this energy outward. Feel the loving energy flowing through your hands.

As in the lovingkindness meditation, you can direct your loving energy first to specific people, and then to larger groups, ultimately sending it to the world in general with the intention to raise our collective vibration from fear to love. Remember how much stronger love is than fear. Allow the energy to flow for a few minutes, or as long as you like.

If you try this, please feel free to share your experience below.

SoulCollage® cards are for personal use, and are not for sale, barter, or trade.

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Ready to receive

Receive

It’s been on my mind lately that, even in this season of giving, I must always be ready to receive the abundance of the Universe.

This is the SoulCollage card I made today to represent this concept. I am a slow artist on any given day, but today I was even slower, as the image of the pouring grain I intended to use to represent abundance was hiding from me. As you can see, I finally found it!

May you and I both be ready to receive the abundant blessings that are flowing to us even now.

SoulCollage® cards are for personal use, and are not for sale, barter, or trade.

The lovingkindness meditation

Hope

The limits of our goodwill form the ultimate boundaries of our peace of mind, for we cannot achieve peace while aversion is present. –Josh Korda

The lovingkindness meditation is a beautiful–and challenging–practice in which you offer lovingkindness first to yourself, and then to others … those who love you unconditionally, your loved ones, beloved pets, acquaintances, strangers, all sentient beings, relatives, and those who annoy you greatly. (These last two categories can overlap. OK, these last two categories do overlap.) I find it especially easy to offer lovingkindness to those who are now on the other side, as they are now even more purely loving than they were when they were here.

I’ve found in the past that serious resistance can arise to offering lovingkindness to those who seem to be doing their utmost to make my life difficult, or to those who’ve seemed to do so in the past. That’s why I’ve really enjoyed following Beth Terrence’s May is for Metta, which really eases into the lovingkindness practice, and helps build a strong foundation for it–to get in touch with your loving heart energy before you begin.

These are my favorite phrases to use during the meditation …

May I be safe.

May I be happy.

May I be at ease.

May I be peaceful.

May I be healthy and strong.

May I have a calm, clear mind, and a peaceful, loving heart.

May I experience love, joy, and wonder in this life just as it is.

And today may you experience love, joy, and wonder in this life–just as it is.

This post is illustrated with the SoulCollage card I made to represent my 4th chakra companion, a joyful bird, and also to celebrate Hope, that thing with feathers.

May all beings be at ease

Bronze Age hearth

When I opened my new issue of Shambhala Sun yesterday, I found this poem, which is also a prayer, and loved it. I hope you do too.

Whatever living beings there may be;
Whether they are weak or strong, omitting none,
The great or the mighty, medium, short or small,

The seen and the unseen,
Those living near and far away,
Those born and to-be-born,
May all beings be at ease!
Let none deceive another,
Or despise any being in any state.
Let none through anger or ill-will
Wish harm upon another.

Even as a mother protects with her life
Her child, her only child,
So with a boundless heart
Should one cherish all living beings:

Radiating kindness over the entire world
Spreading upwards to the skies,
And downwards to the depths;
Outwards and unbounded,
Freed from hatred and ill-will.

Whether standing or walking, seated or lying down,
Free from drowsiness,
One should sustain this mindfulness.
This is said to be the sublime abiding.

–Buddha, from the Metta Sutta, translated by The Amaravati Sangha

This post is illustrated by my SoulCollage card Bronze Age hearth and home.

A prayer before work

Today I found this prayer in an old issue of Spirituality & Health (May/June 2008), accompanying an article by Susan Baller-Shepard, “Blessing Your Workspace.”

Holy One, I come to work today, and this is what I offer: Me. Here. In this place.

Use this life of mine for a higher cause, a greater good. If this is not a place that is good for me or for the world, then help me to move on from this work.

May this be a place of transformation. May I learn the lessons here that I am to learn. May I convey hope or healing to those I encounter today in person, on the phone, or via e-mail.

If there is chaos or a problem here today, may I listen deeply, beyond the din of that noise.

If there are politics played out, please help me to act wisely. May I keep my ego in check. May I be generous and compassionate.

Amen.

I will definitely be using this …

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