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Archive for August, 2014

FRIDAY’S POEM FROM “RHYTHMS AND CYCLES” – The Four Directions of My Life

August 29, 2014 Leave a comment

Here is a personal poem from my “Rhythms and Cycles” collection. The theme of this week’s blog posts has been about bringing more light into the world. This is a way I do that:

The Four Directions of My Life

Vision: The rising Sun
Pulls me forward to reveal
Deep Truths to be shared
With the many. These truths
Are my Truths, your Truths.
This is my work in the world.

Growth: The summer Sun
Pumps juice through the green grass
To feed the many. It all starts
With the grass. Throw open the tent flaps
To the purifying Sun.
This is my work in my home.

Rest: The setting Sun
Pacifies the heart, stills the soul
To a quiet place. Yet in that stillness
Lies a deep potential for Love.
There is a strong slow Earth-rhythm
Waiting to awaken me to ecstasy.

Generation: The hidden Sun
Propels me toward new vision,
New growth; the next cycle is about
To begin. The spiral of life
Through days, months, years holds
Me to a certain course toward Love.

©2014 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

The Light Quotient – Richard’s Commentary

August 28, 2014 Leave a comment

I struggled with this response. Why? I was in a bit of a dark place when I faced writing this article, so Rosemary’s post aimed directly at me! And what do we often do when something is aimed directly at us? We freeze! And I sat at the keyboard a bit chilly, frozen, dark!

But I faced the fear and wrote about dark moods and “light quotients”! Here’s the key to Rosemary’s whole article:

You might never have thought about decisions and choices as a matter of assessing Light Quotient before but the time is here to bring more Light into the world. Thus, we must constantly focus on how much Light we are contributing to the energy field around us and around the Planet.

Staying in my dark mood is a choice. I realize that and have been moving this choice around in my mind – and my heart – since yesterday afternoon. As I went to sleep, and it took awhile to drop off, I worked to lift the “light quotient” all around me. And it took work! I did a “nightly review.” Do you ever do this? It’s a good exercise: before dropping off to sleep go over in your mind all the events of the day, moving in reverse order, latest event to earliest. Review the events, and especially your responses to those events from the perspective of learning lessons. Ask: did I respond appropriately? Could my reaction have been different, better in some way? How might I have done that differently, more effectively? This process is not about self-judgment but about learning and improving. Maybe another question can be Did I bring in enough light into that situation?

This process did help me drift off to sleep last night. It didn’t solve any problems and it didn’t lift my dark mood entirely, but it did bring more light into my life and my rest (dreams were good!).

Now, here, this morning there are still some clouds overshadowing the light in my day so far. But as I write I have the sense that there is a lifting to those clouds. Maybe just writing about it has helped bring in some light. I do picture myself as a “writer.” I can add this “tool” to my approach to lifting the “light quotient” in my life. In fact, this is exactly what my “Morning Pages” practice is about. Following the Julia Cameron Artist’s Way approach has helped me with the “light quotient” in my life for many years!

When I awoke this morning my first thought was about this blog article and how I was resisting it, resisting writing about this business about “light quotients.” I was still in the darkness. But I asked how I could bring in more light and that’s when I reminded myself that “I am a writer.” I need to be able to write about anything, even (especially?) about light when I am in the dark!

The sun is coming out. My day will be bright now because I am choosing to see the sun beyond the clouds. I wish for you a sunny day filled with an abundance of light. And if you are in the clouds ask what choices you are making to remain in the shadows. It’s a process and takes practice!

ROSEMARY’S EXPLORATION: The Light Quotient

August 27, 2014 Leave a comment

Why am I making this choice? Taking this action? Making this decision? And what is the ‘Light Quotient’ of this choice?

You might never have thought about decisions and choices as a matter of assessing Light Quotient before but the time is here to bring more Light into the world. Thus, we must constantly focus on how much Light we are contributing to the energy field around us and around the Planet.

If you hear any news about what is happening around the globe then you know that there is much being reported that has a heavy energy about it. There is a lot of darkness in the world. BUT you do not have to be focused on that darkness!

You have choices to make in every moment. Choices about what you will do, what action you will take, how you will respond to challenge or to a challenging situation. At a deeper level, you also have choices about what you will think, which beliefs you will hold onto, what words you will speak. You can assess the Light Content of each thought, belief, word or action you embrace.

Do you watch the news and feel drawn down into heavy energy? Or do you avoid hearing anything about what is going on in the world so that you can avoid the dark energy? Remember, you are at choice about how you will respond to any given stimulus!

You can focus on good news, on what is going right in the world, on the Light. You can choose to speak words that uplift and support and give the gift of Light where there is darkness. In your own mind, you can choose to clear those beliefs that have you thinking dark thoughts, especially about yourself.

When you consider your current situation, in any area of your life – job/career/business, relationships, health, emotions, mental state, finances – do you dwell on what is not working the way you want it to or do you turn your thoughts to what IS working and what it is that you would like to have in your life? Do you shine the Light on the positive energies around you or do you allow yourself to be drawn down into the dark, heavy energy?

For example, the current excitement on Facebook is to watch videos of people pouring buckets of ice water over their heads as they are challenged to donate to a charitable cause. Some people are getting fancy about the way that they meet the challenge and are having fun with it. Some people are smiling and donating to the cause with or without the dunking. And others are posting comments on Facebook criticizing the activities or the people or the cause. Which energy do you think carries more Light? Which would you choose to have in your body, your energy field?

This is one example of where you can choose your response. Does it really affect you if someone dumps ice water on their head and posts a video to raise awareness about a disease? And what about other things that you see – war, crime, death, politics – do you resist and let yourself feel heavy or do you surround yourself with Light and move your thoughts into areas where you can make a difference and raise the Light Quotient?

Choose to bring more Light into the world! Let this be your ‘why.’

Ro Pic Sig

ROSEMARY’S INSPIRATION: Why Am I Doing This?

August 26, 2014 Leave a comment

Rosemary’s “Two-Minute” Video for this Week: Why Am I Doing This?

New Moon in Virgo I Ching Divination

August 25, 2014 Leave a comment

As I posted earlier this “Moon-day” the Moon and Sun were conjunct at 10:13 AM EDT just inside Virgo (about 2 1/2 degrees). As I do just after this New Moon event I cast an I Ching Gua, the six line hexagram of the ancient Chinese approach to divination. I do this to get a sense of the energies coming in with the New Moon. For me this is a meditation practice and a way to tap into the “inner” to determine what is going on in the “outer.”

Today’s divination is very auspicious;  the energies the New Moon brought in are strong yet balanced; and even as they change (means change) the auspiciousness of the time grows!

Da Xu-Great AccumulationThe initial Gua I cast (I use the 50-yarrow stalk method) is pictured here. The bottom trigram is Qian meaning Heaven. These were all 7s, strong Yang lines forming a very sturdy foundation for the month. The upper trigram was formed by two 8s and a 9; two strong yin lines and a weak Yang line. The top 9 then shifts to an open Yin line forming the new “accomplished” Gua (see that hexagram below).

The initial Gua is composed of “Mountain” over “Heaven” and means “great accumulation.” In the sequence of the 64 hexagrams that compose the I Ching great accumulation follows “Without Falsehood.”  The implication is “when truthful there is great accumulation of virtue.” And with virtue comes great power, wealth and prosperity.

We are entering harvest time. It will be a good, even great harvest.

In the hexagram Heaven is below Mountain. The image is of clouds hanging within the mountains accumulating cooling and nourishing rain – a majestic image! And this is a good sign for continuing fair weather for the abundant harvest.

Tai-AdvanceWhen the top line shifts from Yang to Yin the accomplished Gua is Tai which means “advance.” It is pictured here:

To capture an image of this, one sees that the top line of the initial Gua “opens” as it changes. This opening lets the accumulation of virtue flow out in “advancement” and we use the accumulation to good purpose. The accomplished Gua means it is favorable to take action.

Quoting Master Alfred Huang, author of my main reference, The Complete I Ching, “Tai is one of the most auspicious words in Chinese.” It can mean: “more than great, peace, safety, good health, progress, proceeding, and advancing.”

Continuing to quote from Master Huang, here is King Wen’s decision for this Gua:

Advance.
The little is departing,
The great is arriving.
Good fortune.
Prosperous and smooth.

The keys to this accomplished Gua are union and harmony. Within the structure of the hexagram, the two trigrams, Heaven below and Earth above, are coming together in union. This is why the word Tai is so auspicious: when Heaven unites with Earth blessing and bliss are attained. And humans are the connectors. As the Taoteching states: “Heaven is great, Earth is great, Humans are also great.”

It is a time of unity and harmony. As we advance in the year toward the Autumnal Equinox, as this Moon-cycle begins to wane, we can move into the balance point in the Sun-cycle.

Harvest is great. Accumulate great virtue over the next few weeks and on that strength advance toward balance and harmony!

PS: As always, my dear friend and awesome astrologer, Gloria Hesseloff writes the perfectly synchronous newsletter on this Virgo New Moon; quoting: Virgo energy asks us to become highly competent in a skill that is of value to others. We then generously offer it as our high service. Your specific gifts are truly needed at this significant moment in history. The goal is to do this without arrogance (humbly) but also without self-deprecation. This can be a tricky task…

Through “great accumulation” of virtue we make gains “of value to others.” From this accumulation we “advance” and offer our gains as “our high service.” And we do this from a point of harmony and balance!

HAPPY NEW MOON-DAY!

August 25, 2014 Leave a comment

Here’s a quote from Rosemary’s newsletter:

New Moon is today, Monday, August 25 at 10:13 am EDT. This is when the Sun and the Moon meet up at the same degree of the sign of Virgo and the Moon is barely visible in the night sky. For the following 14 days the Moon grows and helps us to attract growing things into our lives. Make a plan for what you will be inviting into your life as the Moon grows to Full this time.

As with all New Moons I will cast an I Ching Gua (six-line hexagram of open (yin) and closed (yang) lines) to get a sense of the energies coming in with the new moon and lasting for the next month (moonth) while the Sun is in Virgo.

Since the the Moon is exactly conjunct the Sun just after my usual publishing time for this blog, consider this a place-holder until I “read the sticks.” Meanwhile enjoy the refreshed energy as the Moon begins to emerge from the Sun and moves on in her waxing journey!

FRIDAY’S POEM FROM “RHYTHMS AND CYCLES” – Muluc

August 22, 2014 Leave a comment

This week’s posts have been about tools for self-knowledge. I use many tools to continue and further my journey. I have used a number of card-decks over the years from versions of the Tarot to “oracle-style” decks that bring a message or an affirmation to my days. I am currently using the Mayan Oracle Cards and enjoying the openings to that source of revelation.

The other day I drew Muluc which suggests we read the signs and understand the symbols that come to us. These are signals from the Universe, working to awaken humanity to a higher calling. I wrote the following in response to the card. I am putting it in my Rhythms and Cycles collection because the awakening process is ongoing and cyclic; we awaken in levels as more is revealed to us and we peel away the layers of forgetfulness.

Muluc

Perception is everything. It is truth, beauty, wisdom, and ultimately salvation.

And we can change our perception in a blink or a breath.

Perceive the signs from the Universe that are available moment-to-moment.

Open to all that your senses, all of them, have to tell you.

Listen with your heart. It is the largest sense-organ and cannot be filled!

Muluc is the key that turns the lock and opens all the senses to remember.

Star-children are awakening to Truth.

The key is turned, the lock undone.

Remember! Re-member!

©2014 Richard W. Bredeson. All rights reserved.

Know Thyself – Tools for Self-Knowledge – Richard’s Commentary

August 21, 2014 Leave a comment

As I was writing my “morning pages” today I realized after a couple of paragraphs that I was writing today’s post and commentary on Rosemary’s Exploration article. I began my pages, as I often do, writing about the passage of time; here’s my entry:

We are running out of Leo fast; and then August. Everyone seems to be noting how fast time is now passing.

Of course it is all perception – as everything is. One effect on our perception is the amount of information we are bombarded with moment to moment. 24-hour news, FaceBook, email, the never ending stream of websites and blogs is literally overwhelming. When we are overwhelmed we can go into a spin, a dive that seems endless, frightening and high-speed. Time melts away in the dive – it almost feels like a death-defying dive!

And it is all perception! The only reality is of our own making, our own perceiving. To change our reality all we need to do is change our perspective. And this is a matter of intention and attention.

It begins with intention: what is going on inside. If we feel we are in free-fall, take a breath, maybe two, deep cleansing breaths, and then put the brakes on. Stop the fall. Sink into the dantien (the lower abdomen area) and breathe there. It is possible to float here. And as we float we can get a sense of flow, of going with the flow. The current doesn’t have to be a raging rapids; it can be a slow, lazy summer river taking its time in search of the sea. It can take on any speed we give it because this is our reality. We can imagine it to be any rate of flow we desire!

It’s good to take time out of a busy life to slow the pace. There really is no place to go. There’s nothing to do. Oh, OK, there are chores of life, tasks we set for ourselves, responsibilities we sign up for and lessons to learn. But we can be and breathe through all of these.

The “being part” is the witness who rides above all of the rapid pace, the wild passage of time, the endless stream of information. Rise up to that level and watch it all. How serious does it all appear to be – how real? How important?

From that vantage the passage of time seems almost irrelevant. Yes, we have our lessons to work out, our karmic Lesson Plan. Here’s where attention comes in. There are external influences that come to play in our lives. We have other people’s perceptions to take into account and to process. When we pay attention we can see and learn the lessons these interactions hold for us. This is a matter of shifting our perspective from “encounter” to “classroom.” We shift from “other” to “mirror” – how is this person mirroring me, my interactions and my behavior?

Inner perspective, intention, and outer perspective, attention, are always relative, which means they are adaptable, transmutable. The simple technique of using breath to do the adapting is all that’s needed. One breath can stop the fall, gain a fresh perspective and shift reality.

I have moved now well into my birthday month, working on my 70th year! To many, and sometimes me, this sounds old! And from this perspective that time is speeding up, I may not have much time left! So, I take a breath and try this on: “70 is the new 50”! Ah, that’s better and about how I feel! And soon enough 100 will be the new 70!

Rosemary asks: Have you explored tools to help you understand where you are coming from? What about where others are coming from? Do you value the differences in how people approach learning, or life, or do you expect everyone to see things as you see them? To listen and to hear exactly what you hear? To feel the way you feel?

My answer, as it is for many things these days, is “I practice Qigong.” Breathe deeply and gain a new perspective on your “reality.”

 

ROSEMARY’S EXPLORATION: Know Thyself – Tools for Self-Knowledge

August 20, 2014 1 comment

How well do you know who you are, really?

Of course, you know your name, your physical history, where you were born, etc. You might know your Sun sign to look up a horoscope in the newspaper. You probably know your parents’ names and your grandparents’ names. But who are you, really?

Do you know your thinking style? Do you know where your attention goes when you are presented with a situation or event? Do you know your Life Purpose, your Life School and your Life Lesson or Blind Spot? Have you examined your limiting beliefs? How about those negative self-talk thoughts you carry around with you? Are you clear about your values and your priorities?

I could continue the list but it is too long. There are so many facets to a human being, so many aspects to the personality, that we often think we are simpler beings than we really are.

And what is true for you is true for everyone around you.

For example, you have a certain learning style. Most folks are visual learners. They process information by seeing it. Have you noticed that you remember something better if you see it written than if you just hear it? That’s because your preferred learning style is visual.

Some people are auditory learners. They need to hear material so that they can better learn and remember. For these folks, just seeing the written word isn’t good enough – they need to also hear it spoken or to speak it aloud themselves.

Now if you are a visual learner, you use phrases that reflect this, like ‘Do you see what I am saying?’ or, ‘How does this look to you?’ If, however, you are an auditory learner, you resonate better with language that reflects hearing, like ‘Did you hear about this?’ or ‘How does this sound to you?’

Can you see/hear how this difference can impact communication between two people?

This is only one example of how important it is to know something about yourself.

What about other tools for self-knowledge that give you more detailed information about your tendencies and inherent energies? Astrology. Numerology. Enneagram. Myers-Briggs. DISC. Scientific Hand Analysis. Chinese 5-elements. Your Chinese astrology star number. There is a long list of ways that you can understand yourself more deeply.

Have you explored tools to help you understand where you are coming from? What about where others are coming from? Do you value the differences in how people approach learning, or life, or do you expect everyone to see things as you see them? To listen and to hear exactly what you hear? To feel the way you feel?

Remember that:

All Love Flows from Self-Love.

To love another you must first love yourself. Learn more about yourself and love it all. There is nothing better about one Enneagram type over another, but the more you understand about your tendencies the more conscious you can be about choosing how to respond to stimulus as it is presented to you. One Astrological chart is as good as another but they can carry very different lessons for the person to learn.

I can often shift a person from feeling conflicted to being more peaceful simply by pointing out how differing human beings can look at the same scene and describe differing points of view. This is most beneficial if you know your own point of view first.

Explore tools for self-knowledge and get to know yourself better. It can change your life!

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ROSEMARY’S INSPIRATION: Tools for Self-Knowledge-What’s in Your Toolbox?

August 19, 2014 Leave a comment

Rosemary’s “Two-Minute” Video for this Week: Tools for Self-Knowledge-What’s in Your Toolbox?