Tuesday, September 10, 2019


P. 139-140

"Abandoned to the whims of others, we must wander daily through the wish to be loved and the fear of rejection before we can be productive. Categorized "good" or "bad" from birth (a "good" baby does not cry too much), we become so enmeshed with the tenuous threads of approval that we are creatively paralyzed. We see with others' eyes and smell with others' noses.
--- Viola Spolin, Improvisation for the Theater

“Is wisdom available at a low vibration? Of course. But it is unlikely you will hear it, or know it, because you are being precluded by the lower thought-forms that you are engaged with. And that is always the temptation of the one who goes upward, you know, that you will be caught in a struggle of lower vibration that you have attended to for so long that you believe it must still be there.”

What is the key to enlightenment the student asked? Master replied, “Awareness.” The student said, “But master, I don't understand.” The master spoke louder, “Awareness!” “Yes, master, we've heard you say that before but what does that mean?” Finally, as passionately he could express, “AWARENESS!!!!!!!!”

Last week one of our members spoke to the powerful lesson that is also contained in the Hippocratic Oath that doctors take, “First do no harm.” Now in a worldly sense or to the physical world, that is a directive about our relationship to others. However, in order for this maxim to be in anyway productive, we need to apply the same message to ourselves.

When I am in a place where I can observe without judgement, I become aware of the pervasive anger that seems to be dwelling on both sides of political ailes, nationalities, races and religions. I become aware of the anger and I recognized some of it is mine as well, and I know that is calling me to healing. At the same time I am often overwhelmed with a sense of sadness, and then I am tempted to move into action, but I forget or forgo the necessary preparations for what the Buddhists call “right action.”--Prayer, Surrender, Holding all of this, no matter what my emotions might, as an act of love and devotion. I realize that no matter what my good intentions might be, if my attempted actions towards transformation are fueled by the energy of anger, fear, separation or self-righteousness, not only are they doomed to failure, but they will actually feed that energy, that low vibration which I am desiring to transform.

Last week we ended with the exploration of the false idea that somehow or another gaining wisdom or compassion or truth or self-esteem or a higher vibration in any way somehow or another involved a price or a struggle.

Think of the simple and yet profound words of Jesus when He said “The Kingdom of Heaven is within you.” No struggle, No requirements to do anything, no price that has to be paid. It is all here. 

The question then remains how come we are not aware of our Truth? And so here is where the “work” is required, if we want to use those terms, and it might be the best way we can describe it in human terminology.(more the “work” of letting go or re-membering) There is a parable that Jesus spoke called “The Pearl of Great Price” which is also a reflection of the Kingdom of Heaven. The gist of the parable is that a man discovered the pearl of great price that he greatly desired and so he sold everything he had in order to be able to gain that treasure. In other words, the awareness of the Kingdom of Heaven became so great that he decided he would let nothing else get in the way of that-- no other forms; no other attachments. 

And so here we are faced with the same dilemma of the rich young man who asked Jesus “What must I do to be saved?” Jesus told him to “obey the Commandments.” the young man said “I do all that,” and then Jesus said, “If you would be perfect (in other words, if you really want to be on the path of Enlightenment; if you really want to embrace the Kingdom within) go sell what you have and give it to the poor and come follow me.” The gospel then states, “the man went away sadly because he had many possessions.” 
Here we are with our many possessions or addictions or attachments or however you would like to look at them-- sometimes willing, sometimes not to let them go, in order to be able to experience the kingdom. 

To align these ideas more closely with the language of the book, 
we can be in conscious awareness of our hearts open in love and compassion; 
Our hearts can also be open in love and compassion without us realizing it very much;
There are also going to be times when I realize how tightly or how protectively I am holding onto my idea of self and I have a choice when I come to this realization of continuing to hold on or to let go.
There are other times when I am so lost in my clinging to this lower vibration and limited perception of myself that it takes some time and energy to realize that it's a choice is available to me. It would almost be like contracting a muscle in your physical body and holding it and holding it and holding it until you finally realize how tight it is, how tight it has become, and in that pain in that discomfort becomes the willingness and the intention to open, release, transform.

Fortunately there are sometimes with each one of us, and I know this is true for me, when these kind of unexpected moments of joy, of openness, of freedom, of spaciousness, of peace, of play come running through me, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually and there's a breath, an opening. There it is- this breeze running through me that reminds me what it is like to live in the Kingdom. Then, like most of us, of course, I fall back into my daily routine of thinking. I become enmeshed back into my identification with my humanness and begin to think all over again that I need to  struggle to be able to get this gift that is already here.

“If you can imagine rising up through a thunderstorm on the way to the sun that is above the clouds, you may not know the sun is there while you are struggling within the rain and the wind that is pummeling you. You do see what is above you, and you become so invested in fighting the storm that you believe that no sun can shine upon you again. That is what has happened to Paul some days, and it happens to all students as they elevate their vibration. There are times when you are challenged by what you have known, what you have been expressed through, what you have believed to be true, and there are times when you are not. There is growth in all stages, you know. But much of it means you must pay attention to your consciousness, and your consciousness, we say, is who you are in conscious thought and vibration.”

When I am aware enough I choose not to feed my negative emotions or my depression or my darkness or my whatever other Illusions I might be caught in, but I was remarkably reminded on Sunday morning that there is a huge difference between feeding my anger with more anger and feeding it with love.

Old illusions pieces, of distorted thinking,harmful behaviors or thoughts at whatever level,  physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual can all lower our vibration and our ability to act with love and compassion. In our awareness, however, we can begin to choose to think differently, to gently nurture other thoughts or life-giving behaviors. If we continually do that-- pay less attention to  the old stuff that we might have been attached to, it might still hang around but it has less and less energy to influence us. In other words, the negativity begins to die of attrition, We are not denying it, we are simply acknowledging it no longer serves us.

Going even deeper int the realm of transformation, I was reminded by one of you of something that I had forgotten. How easily that happens! Here is one of my more recent Ram Dass stories.

He was sitting in his home in Hawaii doing a telecast workshop with a couple of other Buddhist teachers. Even though it has been years since his stroke, he still is slow in articulation and sometimes the verbal expression of ideas takes some time, even though his message is quite clear. He asked the question with a slight grin on his face, “What do you do with these seemingly horrible thoughts that you have?” Hinting that we are all capable of the best and the worst thoughts that come flying through our mind, eg. we can be in a place of loving, thoughtful compassion and unity consciousness and then, even a second later, we can be in a place of death and horror and destruction. 
He asked the question and it almost seemed that the Buddhist teachers on his right and his left looked a little bit befuddled about how to answer. So he answered it for them, “You need to love them to death!” You love them to death. You do not have to be controlled by those thoughts or images; you do not have to make them any more real than they seem, and yet you can open your heart and compassion to them just as you would open your heart to someone else who is in pain. Because where else does our negativity come from but our fear and pain. “You love them to death.”

We just began exploring what I might refer to as levels of consciousness because Consciousness or awareness is the theme we were following today. There are times when I am very aware, when I am very conscious, when I am in my truth. Then what usually happens is I begin to take that awareness for granted and without realizing it I just fall into my ordinary everyday thinking and action. It's not bad or evil, it might even be good in some ways, but my consciousness is only working through my personality self and the physical world that I am a part of.

And then there are times when I am really asleep or unaware, when I am caught up in the illusion of depression or separation or fear or anxiety and without realizing and I am making that those sensations of lower vibration more and more real. When it is dark and cloudy and stormy it is much more it is much easier to think of the storm as being real rather than the sunshine. 

We ended up with a model of consciousness offered a number of years ago, of stages or places of awareness and since I did not get the opportunity to really finish that Sunday we will begin with that next week.
I have a favor to ask of you since we are in a sense beginning a new year kind of “a new school year.” Please let people know, especially those people who are coming to Unity, already that this is an Open Class that people are welcome to it anytime that we will have books they can borrow if they would like and even that is not a necessity. We love having you here to add to the higher vibration of love and peace and awareness that we are all creating. You can let them know, if you feel this is true, that during the 45 minutes we are together, even if we are not terribly conscious of it, that we are creating a Sacred Space that is not only healing for each one of us but also heals the world as well. And if it is true for you as well, I know that I walk out of this room on Sunday morning experiencing myself as being lighter, freer, more open, more healed, more aware of the possibilities of life and for that and for all of you I am extremely grateful. 

I am also touched and honored by those of who who make our Sunday morning gathering your Church. Please know that you can invite anyone who might be interested. They do not need to be connected to Unity to participate in this loving adventure.

My Hope for you and for anyone else who joins us is that this is a form of spirituality I can be practiced by anyone, anytime.  

Thank you.

Monday, September 2, 2019


You might recall that last week I offered the example being at a ball game with my grandson fan and being hot uncomfortable in the bleachers was bright hot sunshine coming down and no shade and thinking somehow about how miserable I was. Then it dawned on me that I am here with someone I love dearly and he loves me as well I realized I could shift my focus in the words we use here I could I could move to a higher vibration. The thing about it is is that the external circumstances don't change necessarily but my relationship to them does and my relationship to my thoughts what I am thinking including the external circumstances I find myself in that makes all the difference.

I was reminded of a passage in a book called Another Roadside Attraction by Tom Robbins (Just as an aside when I quote a book or a movie it doesn't necessarily mean that I liked it or agree with it but in most cases I have found at least there are Snippets of wisdom to be found practically any place and I try to pick them up wherever I find them but don't necessarily take them as a stamp of approval or even a recommendation that you should read this book or see this movie.)

(The main character is with a family named Ziller) 
The sky was still blue, the sun still beaming when they locked me up. But during my incarceration it had begun to rain. The legendary Seattle rain. It was a thin gray rain;hard and fast and cold. In it we had to walk four blocks from the Public Safety Building to the Ziller's Jeep--we were at its mercy. As was my custom in such elements I hunkered against the rain, drew my head into my collar turned my eyes to the street tensed my footsteps and proceeded in misery. But my hosts I soon noticed reacted in quite another way. They strolled calmly and smoothly their bodies perfectly relaxed. They did not hunch away from the rain but rather glided through it. They directed their faces to it and did not flinch as it drummed their cheeks. They almost reveled in it. Somehow I found this significant. The Zillers accepted the rain. They were not at odds with it they did not deny it or combat it; they accepted it and went with it in harmony and ease. I tried it myself. I relaxed my neck and shoulders and turned my gaze into the wet. I let it do to me what it would. Of course it was not trying to do anything to me. What a silly notion. It was simply falling as rain should, and I as man, another phenomenon of nature, was sharing the space in which it fell. It was much better regarding it that way. I got no wetter than I would have otherwise, and if I did not actually enjoy the wetting, at least I was free of tension. I could even smile. 
From Another Roadside Attraction Tom Robbins

Along with The changing of the focus the raising of the vibration the transformation of my relationship with the rain comes also this marvelous. That the rain is not doing anything to me. you see I think so often I know for me I will fall into victim consciousness and find myself controlled at least emotionally controlled by the events I find myself in now we could go into a lot of detail about how I might create those events but aside from that I find myself what we call to be a victim of circumstance. it is not a difficult reach when I am in that low vibrational mindset to think somehow that the world or Mother Nature or someone or something else is doing something to me. as long as I stay in that low form of thinking I am going to continually be annoyed unhappy and probably angry.

What would it be like to sink in a moment of seeming struggle or contradiction that the world is not doing anything to me ?

When we speak of wisdom or any other quality of the Divine whether it is love or Compassion or gratitude we are not speaking of something that is created we are speaking about opening ourselves up to what is already there. by doing so we begin to rid ourselves of the conflict of The Thinking mind with a personality self trying to take control or trying to be the spiritual part of our being. in other words we step out of the impossible Realm at the personality somehow or another we'll reach divinity and realize that Divinity is already here and then what my personality can do is open myself up to that possibility.

“Now Paul is already asking, “Are they going to be frustrated? Are they going to be trying to align to wisdom and feel like they are banging their noggin against a wall?” Perhaps they may, it’s an experience that they may choose. But it is not a requirement for knowing. You have all invested such expression in the path of struggle—that nothing is meritful unless it is hard won—that you cannot realize that wisdom is free. Wisdom is an inheritance. It may be called. There is universal wisdom that is all around you that may be tuned in to like a radio. When you align to your own wisdom, you are aligning to yourself as a conduit for wisdom so you may be expressed in wisdom.”

Here is another profound reminder add becoming embraced by the truth of Who You Are does not necessarily me and you have to struggle. I'm reminded of that famous story of Jacob and the angel in the Old Testament where they were wrestling all night and as the sun came up the angel said I've got to go but Jacob says I will not let you go until you bless me. there is much Beauty in that Passage and I am still continuing to learn from it but I can also see how my thought process can become a bit twisted by thinking that there has to be a struggle.

I'm reminded of that wonderful line from an older movie called war games where the computer speaks to its creator and says strange game Professor Falken the only way to win is not to play.

Somehow or another we got to be playing around with this idea of imagination or creative visualization and if I was the one who created that particular diversion allow me to be responsible for it. we talked back and forth about whether or not changes could be made to our imagination that affect the physical world and all of this had opinions one way or the other. I realized that I was a little bit stuck on being right and so I needed to let go of that one and the begin to realize that the heart of the matter that we were discussing was what we referred to above as changing my focus. more simply put a quotation that is attributed to Wayne Dyer when you change the way you look at things the things you look at change. let's keep it that simple for a while.

“When you are reactive, when you are frightened, when you are angry, you are never in your wisdom. You are operating in low vibration and you must attend to that so that you can go forward in a higher way.”

This is a great little piece here. it is not suggesting that we fall into judgment when we find ourselves angry or upset or distracted from the truth but it does suggest third when we discover we are angry or out of balance in any particular way do we need to do a reality check we need to what happened we need to do what happens with a GPS and that is we need to recalculate get back into balance. sometimes it is external events that will trigger this awareness other times I will become aware of it in different ways. it is sort of like Spirit tapping us on the shoulder and saying an adjustment here is necessary for whatever reasons you have become out of balance let's get back to Center. 

I was reminded of the second last directive here. You will forget all this. rather than keep you hanging I decided to include whole list of directors here then you can do with whatever you choose
1. You will receive a body. You may like it or hate it, but it's the only thing you are sure to keep for the rest of your life.
2. You will learn lessons. You are enrolled in a full-time informal school called "Life on Planet Earth". Every person or incident is the Universal Teacher.
3. There are no mistakes, only lessons. Growth is a process of experimentation. "Failures" are as much a part of the process as "success."
4. A lesson is repeated until learned. It is presented to you in various forms until you learn it -- then you can go on to the next lesson.
5. If you don't learn easy lessons, they get harder. External problems are a precise reflection of your internal state. When you clear inner obstructions, your outside world changes. Pain is how the universe gets your attention.
6. You will know you've learned a lesson when your actions change. Wisdom is practice. A little of something is better than a lot of nothing.
7. "There" is no better than "here". When your "there" becomes a "here" you will simply obtain another "there" that again looks better than "here."
8. Others are only mirrors of you. You cannot love or hate something about another unless it reflects something you love or hate in yourself.
9. Your life is up to you. Life provides the canvas; you do the painting. Take charge of your life -- or someone else will.
10. You always get what you want. Your subconscious rightfully determines what energies, experiences, and people you attract -- therefore, the only foolproof way to know what you want is to see what you have. There are no victims, only students.
11. There is no right or wrong, but there are consequences. Moralizing doesn't help. Judgments only hold the patterns in place. Just do your best.
12. Your answers lie inside you. Children need guidance from others; as we mature, we trust our hearts, where the Laws of Spirit are written. You know more than you have heard or read or been told. All you need to do is to look, listen, and trust.
13. You will forget all this.
14. You can remember any time you wish.
(From the book "If Life is a Game, These are the Rules" by Cherie Carter-Scott)

Of course we ask why why do I keep going from waking to sleeping from being aware to being unaware why can't I just stay in awareness why do I keep forgetting ?

The best understanding that I have now and this might change is it our forgetfulness is also part of the trip. each time I become aware again I have a choice to either beat myself up for becoming unaware or to be grateful for the awareness that I have again.

Although this directive refers to meditation, I think it can also be a marvelous reference to what we have been calling waking and sleeping or awareness awareness.
Saint Francis de Sales gave his students these meditation instructions: “Bring yourself back to the point (of) quiet intently. And even if you do nothing during the whole of your hour but bring your heart back a thousand times, though it went away every time you brought it back, your hour would be very well employed.”

“When you are reactive, when you are frightened, when you are angry, you are never in your wisdom. You are operating in low vibration and you must attend to that so that you can go forward in a higher way.
Is wisdom available at a low vibration? Of course. But it is unlikely you will hear it, or know it, because you are being precluded by the lower thought-forms that you are engaged with. And that is always the temptation of the one who goes upward, you know, that you will be caught in a struggle of lower vibration that you have attended to for so long that you believe it must still be there.”

Here is another directive similar to the one above that reminds us in our awareness if we find ourselves angry lost alone impatient whatever lower vibration we might be somewhat stuck in then we can always use that as a reminder to rise above.


Monday, August 26, 2019


He prayed--it wasn't how I prayed.
He ate--it wasn't what I ate.
He spoke--it wasn't my language.
He dressed--it wasn't what I wore.
He took my hand--it wasn't the color of mine.
But when he laughed--it was how I laughed.
   And when he cried--it was how I cried.

Amy Maddox, 16
Franklin Community High School
Bargersville, IN

We continued to explore an aspect of our earthly dilemma: the mind’s need to know and the soul’s desire to live in the Mystery.

I was not suggesting that we do not ask questions. God knows, I’m always looking. As a person who has spent much of this lifetime cultivating my intellect, I still find comfort in having, what I call an “intellectual framework” to give me some understanding of this evolutionary process I am experiencing, but also realizing and accepting, in the long run, I am going to be confronted with that which the mind cannot comprehend. 

“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and science. He to whom the emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand wrapped in awe, is as good as dead —his eyes are closed.” Albert Einstein

A suggestion: when a question comes to mind, especially when we are doing this kind of spiritual work, eg. “What does that mean?” “How does that idea fit in; it seems completely opposite of what was said before?” etc.
Stop for a moment and ask, “What would it be like if I knew the answer?” and just stay in that space for a moment and notice what happens. 
If you really want to stretch, ask yourself, “What would it be like if the answer didn’t matter?” and sit in that space for a moment. At first it might be quite uncomfortable, but continue to allow yourself to let go of the mind’s turmoil. The turmoil will not disappear, but your attachment to it will lessen. 
As you do this you can begin to experience “the peace that surpasses all understanding.”

Recall the lessons that have come before--these are practices we can do consciously--
  1. Set our willingness and intention--in this case, to be aligned to divine wisdom; then 2) to open ourselves to the possibility of all that means.

The metaphor I used in class was imagining coming out of a cold room, and desiring to be warm, and then moving into the sunlight. There is nothing more you need to do--you let the sunlight warm and comfort you.

Now in this awareness, the sunlight or Divine Wisdom is not a power outside of you, but it is a power beyond the scope and understanding of the little self---here is where we sometimes get caught up. When we speak of Wisdom already being inside you, we are speaking of your unique connection with wisdom that comes about with your alignment with the Truth of who you are. 

“Now wisdom, we say, is a part of your inheritance. And you mistake intelligence for wisdom and they are not the same thing. Anybody can do the math who learns their times tables. Anybody can do the construction that learns how to build something with a hammer and a nail, but no one may know the truth until he aligns to it. You may only know truth ” “by aligning to it. And we underline this, and say it a third time: You may only know truth by aligning to it.”
In other words--you have to step into the light.

I recall Dr. Suess suggested that “Life’s a great balancing act.”  And here we are, balancing real and illusion, the spiritual and the material, surrender and action, the human and the Divine.

One of the reasons why we collect books and workshops, etc. is because the mind is always hunting for a rule book. It wants to be right, to feel safe. I remember someone saying, “When we are born we expect to be handed a user manual--Life 101”--well, here we are still looking.   Me, too.

But then, if we are open to it, there comes the challenge to enter a world or dimension beyond what my mind can grasp or understand. The physicist Max Plank exclaimed that the reason why we cannot comprehend the mystery is because we are “part of the mystery.” It’s like Alan Watts described as trying to “bite your own teeth.”

There are moments when we just “let it be.” When we are in the Holy Instant--these can be both simple and profound experiences, a flower, a cat purring on you lap, that first spoonful of dessert, a child’s laughter---name a few yourself.

“The decision that you make to stand at the precipice and to step off into the unknown is to welcome all the new possibilities that may be, but then you need your wisdom to claim them in your worth. Just because something is there does not mean you require it. Just because it may be seen does not mean you must see it. And your wisdom will teach you. “I am wisdom” will align you to wisdom if you are still enough to move into the frequency of it and let it inform you. And let it inform you, we will say, is the easiest way to understand this. You are all very used to controlling things, you know, so you believe when you are passive, or you are receptive, you are not doing anything, and you confuse this with action. To be in reception is an action. It is not inaction. It’s a conscious choice to allow. If you allow this now, you will receive it now, and you will reap the benefits very quickly.”

We began this reflection with using our imagination--”What would it be like if I did know?”

We will close with another meditative act--”What would it be like to step into the light; to simply align myself to Divine Wisdom, even  letting go of my questions, to allow the Heart to speak to me, to embrace me, to hold me, to love me.

Thank you.


Monday, August 12, 2019


“Everyone of us is shadowed by an illusory person: a false self..We are not very good at recognizing illusions, least of all the ones we cherish about ourselves.  Contemplation is not and cannot be a function of this external self. There is an irreducible opposition between the deep transcendent self that awakens only in contemplation, and the superficial, external self which we commonly identify with the first person singular. Our reality, our true self, is hidden in what appears to us to be nothingness....We can rise above this unreality and recover our hidden reality.... God Himself begins to live in me not only as my Creator but as my other and true self. ” 
― Thomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation

I hesitated to use the term intuition in the context of this chapter on Wisdom. The reason being that the definitions of intuition and the description of the term can range anywhere between a hunch, a guess, a gut feeling, a reflexive reaction to something, or the essence of Divine Wisdom within us. Obviously all of those descriptions are not the same thing.

The way it came up for us this morning is that one person was describing wisdom as listening to the wee small voice or the Divine wisdom within each one of us as being her understanding of intuition and with that I would agree.

As other people thought about or played with their own definitions, eventually we began to run into some unwanted baggage. For me there is a huge difference between a hunch or guess or an involuntary reaction or response to someone or something as compared to listening to the voice of divine wisdom. A hunch or a reaction or response to a stimulus are all learned behaviors that have become so much a part of our personality structure that they live in our unconscious and most often we don't even realize they have been triggered. We simply look at them is our natural way of responding or sometimes say to ourselves, “Well that's just the way I am.”

Probably the biggest challenge, if not the primary challenge, to this work is that we are being asked to both examine and release or let go of all of the old definitions of self including those that lurk on the unconscious level. To release all of those to allow ourselves to become the truth of Who We Are. I do not deny the difficulty of that .

In a way where we are confronted with is that wonderful quote from Einstein:
“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.” 

Here we are looking at ourselves and our world with a burning desire to make things different and yet the realization is dawning on us that if we continue to try to make changes on the personality level they will not stick; they cannot stick.

Intuition is another form of knowing, it is not a reflexive or an unconscious act In fact, it is one of the higher states of consciousness that we can be in. In some ways intuition is a connection between our personality self and the Divine Self in the Spirit.

In the deepest way, when we are speaking of intuition, there is no such thing as my intuition that would be similar to claiming my divine nature. There is only one divine nature and it does not belong to my personality self.

It is true that our decision making process can be clouded by past learnings of fear, of separateness, prejudice and exclusion. We are not pretending that those go away by themselves, but our awareness of them as a very limited form of consciousness allows us to begin to bypass those old patterns of thought into ones that resonate more deeply with the truth.

“Now we ask you this: If you ask the question of yourself and you state it as an intention, “I am now asking myself in a higher way to move into alignment with the question I have asked,” and you set it as an intention, “I am setting this intention to move my frequency into accord with the response I require to know my own wisdom, my information in the highest way available to me,” you will claim it. As you make the intention, you must understand that you are making a decision to align to something. That is very different than grabbing something or shielding yourself from something. It is simply aligning to something new. And in this alignment you call your frequency as yourself in this new way.”

A simple way of distinguishing between true intuitive wisdom as opposed to the limited teaching of the personality self is that intuitive wisdom will be presented to us without a trace of fear or judgment recrimination. Whereas the voice of the smaller self will speak in the language of fear and exclusion as well as predicting dire consequences if we do not obey its dictates.

Because we have free will even though we are encouraged to love unconditionally we still have the choice to live in limitation.

“I am aligning to the question and the response that I require. I am Word though this intention. Word I am Word.”

We could repeat this truth or an affirmation directly after saying Serenity Prayer and being aware of how wonderfully they fit together .

We do not realize that we probably putting this teaching to practice more often than we think. Whenever we open our hearts in compassion to another, we are literally putting ourselves into their “space” to become aware and to know what it is they might be experiencing. We are not taking it on ourselves, but we are in awareness of the pain of another so that we may sit lovingly with them. If nothing else, they are reminded that they are not alone. 

Well, we began with Merton and I can not think of a better way to end with that wonderful prayer of Wisdom from his book Thoughts in Solitude:

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to love as Christ loved does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. Therefore, I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me and you will never leave me to face my perils alone