Ask the Author: Question & Response
For 20 years I have been attempting to change my horrendous outlook, and subsequent judgment of everything. I blamed religion in my childhood, as the cause of my anger and pain. I could not hear the words God or Jesus without triggering negativity. You speak of my Godself. I have been trying to meditate to connect with the Life-Force, the Creator. I can still only use tapes and CDs for that purpose. I want to get silent, go into the stillness, experience the peace I crave, but my mind, due to the controlling ego, makes it very difficult. What would you suggest besides perseverance? Is there another form of prayer that is not simply asking for greater consideration? I do not know how else to put this but I am frustrated and need help not to give up. Worthiness plays a big role. I thank you for your book…
– Stephen, Oregon, USA
Trust that the Creator wants you to have peace of mind, joy, meaning and fulfillment in your life. Trust this, and let your actions be an extension of the Creator’s intention. Focus on these attributes and your physical environment will begin to reshape itself to support this realization. These attributes are expressions of your Godself, and consciously or not, you desire a greater expression of them in your life.
Most forms of meditation and prayer are helpful. Tapes and CDs are practical and valuable tools you can use to get you to where you desire to be. I would like to share 10 additional strategies to facilitate your prayer and meditation practice.
1. Heart-centered prayer and meditation. Learned religious or spiritual prayers and meditations are fine. Use them if they work for you. However, in my own practice, I have found heart-centered prayers and meditations to be more effective in bringing about transformational experiences. By heart-centered prayer and meditation, I mean using your heart and soul to lead you through the process. Once in the meditative state, allow your heart and soul to set the intention. Ask for guidance, then listen and offer gratitude.
2. Morning prayer and meditation. At the very least, I highly recommend spending five minutes in prayer and meditation immediately after you wake up. This assists in setting the intention for the day.
3. Afternoon prayer and meditation. If possible, meditate in the afternoon and take a nap right afterward. An afternoon nap following a meditation allows you to go into a light REM sleep, where although you are unconscious, the possibility of moving into a conscious state during or toward the end of the nap increases.
4. Evening prayer and meditation. Meditating and praying before going to sleep is also incredibly helpful. Some people go to sleep with the TV on, some read books, while others go to sleep with a hundred thoughts crossing their minds. None of these types of behaviors are helpful in obtaining the experiences and connectedness you are yearning for. I recommend that you go into prayer and meditation before going to bed. Make it heart-centered. From deep in your heart, offer gratitude for all that you have, then stop and listen. As any friend would want you to listen, so too does the Creator / Life Force.
5. Imagine your day being the base for your meditations. If your days are filled with judgments, a horrendous outlook, anger and pain, how do you think this will translate into your meditation practice? For just one moment, one honest moment during your day, forgive and pray for someone you previously would have judged. My dear friend, do this with your full heart and soul just once in your life and you will want no other way. Make your day your workshop, your time for conscious meditation. Forgive an action you would have once judged. Send a blessing to someone you might have once criticized. Lend a hand to someone you previously would not have paid attention to. Give an honest compliment to a person you might not have noticed before. Let another car go in front of yours. Pray for someone who appears to be having a bad day. My dear friend, if you understood the countless possibilities for miracles throughout your day, you would swear you lived in Heaven. You would then take these experiences and energies into your meditation practice, and you would find no doors, barriers or any other ego mechanism that would separate you from the Creator, from that Life Force you know to be your true home.
6. Start working on forgiving the past. Imagine if those who raised you, your peers and others who taught you to fear God and Jesus, those who taught you to have a horrendous outlook on life, those who taught you that pain and anger were natural emotions – imagine if they simply read to you from a fairy tale that they themselves were taught was true. Would you judge these people for what they taught you and told you to believe? Or would you now look into your heart and see that they did the best they could with the tools they had at the time? My dear friend, would you laugh, criticize and blame your child for believing there are monsters under his bed and in his closet? Or would you lovingly turn the light on and let him see for himself that there are no such things?
7. Start letting go of the past and focus on experiencing the moment. Thoughts of the past take you away from where you desire to be. They also prevent you from living the life you now desire. If you react with judgment, anger, pain and stress, then know you are bringing in past learned behaviors to deal with the present moment. You are bringing your past into the present, and thus creating a future like your past. All that truly exists in the moment is love and the possibility to be loving through forgiveness and understanding. One of the greatest gifts our Creator has given us is free will, the power to choose how we act and react to anyone at anytime. Let the past go, for where has it taken you? What has it taken away from you? Learn and understand the power of the present moment and your free will. For it is not what someone does that affects you, but how you choose to react to what someone does.
8. Letting go of judgment. We have been trained to judge people and blame our past for how we react and feel. When you simply forgive and pray for those you previously would have judged, you unconsciously teach yourself that you too are worthy of forgiveness, love and being connected to the Life Force, the Creator. My friend, listen carefully, for I have experienced this on many occasions: You will be lifted as high as you believe you deserve to go. No one, and I mean this in the most literal sense, will block your connection to the Creator other than you, your own self doubt, and your belief that you are not worthy of the Creator’s forgiveness and love. Know that you are worthy. Know that you are worth forgiveness for any of your past errors. Know that you are completely loved by the One who created us all.
9. Understand everyone’s connectedness. You are connected to your Source. Your brothers and sisters are connected to their Source. Your Source and theirs are One. Therefore, you are connected to your brothers and sisters. During your day, if you judge a brother or sister, then you judge yourself; and you unconsciously bring that judgment and energy into your meditation. If you judge a brother or sister, regardless if you believe you have every right to do so, you end up carrying this judgment with you. You might not know that you are carrying it, but it colors everything you see and do throughout your day. You jail these energies within you; these energies hold you down, imprisoning you in the physical. On the other hand, if you forgive a brother or sister, you unconsciously let him or her go in peace. You no longer carry judgment with you. Thus you release yourself from these energies, freeing you to move to a higher plane.
10. Release the ego’s power over you. You wrote: “I want to get silent, go into the stillness, experience the peace I crave, but my mind, due to the controlling ego, makes it very difficult.” The only control the ego has over you is the control you allow it to have. The ego is not some master puppeteer pulling your strings. The ego is simply a limited belief system within the mind, and the less power you charge it with, the less powerful it will be.
My dear friend, frustration results from a lack of trust in the Creator’s plan. Treat your brothers and sisters as your heart and soul ask you to. Forgive and love everyone, even and especially those who do not forgive and love you. Then allow the chips to fall where they may. Remember Who walks not only with you, but also inside you, and trust that you’re headed in the right direction at the right time. If, in any one moment or situation in your life, you would completely trust the Creator, frustration would be impossible. Yet over and over again, the ego convinces us that frustration is a saner solution than trust. My friend, the ego’s solutions sound sane only in an insane world. Just once in your life, when you are feeling stressed or frustrated, with your whole heart and soul, choose not to accept the ego’s insane solution. Simply stop and tell yourself: “I have had enough of suffering. I have had enough of stress. I have had enough of frustration. I now choose to trust my Creator and His plan for my life. Dear Creator, I have done all I can, I now leave it in your loving hands.” My friend, this one statement could completely break all the chains that the ego uses to enslave you to its world.
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