Tag Archive | Relationships

Self-Worth and Vulnerability


“Vulnerability is the core of shame, fear and the struggle for worthiness, but it is also the birthplace of joy, creativity, belonging and love.” -Brene Brown

It takes courage to be imperfect, to be who you are instead of what others want you to be, to allow yourself to be comfortable with uncertainty, to love yourself so deeply that you know your true worth no matter how the world treats you. But doing this is also the key to living fully and living with meaning and joy, it is the key to knowing true connection with others and with all there is.
Love and Light,
Rhea Jamil

Forgiveness Exercizes

MeditationForgiveness looks reality in the face. Part of the resistance that many have to forgiveness is the idea that it is like pulling the wool over your eyes, that it means having to pretend that everything is OK. That is not forgiveness, that is denial. Burying your true feelings does not help you move on. Part of forgiveness is acknowledging your hurt, your anger, your pain. Acknowledge those feelings and allow them to pass through you, but don’t hold on to them either. Those feelings are like a forest fire, they move through and burn as long as there is fuel to feed them. But once the fuel is gone, so goes the fire, then new life comes up from the ashes and the forest is renewed. The purpose of the fire is to create the way for renewal, so you must allow it to move through you, but as long as you keep feeding the flames, as long as you keep giving fuel to the anger and hurt, it will continue to burn, and you rob yourself of the possibility of renewal. How do you stop feeding the fire? Forgiveness.

In many cases it may take some time to get to a place of forgiveness, and if you are not ready to forgive right now that is also OK, don’t beat yourself up about it, just allow it to be. You don’t have to forgive today if you’re not ready, but if you want to begin the path toward forgiveness I offer a series of simple exercizes to get you there.  Begin by practicing regular meditation if you are not doing so already. Meditation will help you tap into the still place within, which is where you find your essential self, the self which is aligned with unconditional love. Unconditional love and forgiveness are of the same energy.  The series of videos below provides some guidance on basic meditation and discusses how meditation can improve relationships, reduce stress and help you find inner peace.  

The second step is to begin sending unconditional love to random people, for no reason. You can do this while in meditation or while you’re out and about. Send it to people you pass on the street, send it to the clerk at the supermarket. Send this love from your highest self to theirs, remember that they are not just the personality that you are interacting with, they are an eternal soul like you, and you are connected; send love to that eternal soul which is connected to yours. No need to tell them, just send it from the heart, and feel the warmth and beauty of that energy, notice how you instantly feel better, and perhaps the other person responds to you differently as well.  You will see that by sending this love to others, you become the beneficiary of that energy. You will feel lighter and more present. 

When you have this down, the third step is to send unconditional love to the person who cut you off in traffic, or the person who gave you a dirty look at work. After doing this enough you will begin to see how easy it is to make the choice to simply send love and to forgive, without conditions. You will see how this releases you from the knee-jerk negative reactions that we typcially fall victim to in these situations, and instead allows you to remain in the ‘flow’ of your day without being thrown off-track by negativity.

Finally, when you are ready, sit in meditation and begin sending this same energy to any person or people who deeply wronged you in the past, send it to the people you most need to forgive in order to move on, and this may include yourself. Just choose to do it, without thinking about it. Thinking about it will draw you back into the story, and as discussed in my previous post letting go of the story is a crucial part of forgiveness. [If you find that thoughts about the story keep coming up as you do this, try the exercises I recommend in ‘Thought Seeds’ to rid yourself of those thoughts and continue sending the unconditional love and forgiveness.] After a time you will begin to feel a release, you will begin to feel as if there is space around the hurt, around the story, that it no longer seems to affect you the way it used to. Finish the meditation be surrounding yourself with a bubble of pure gold light. Intend that this bubble will be a barrier that will only allow love and high energies to come through, and will keep out any negativity. You may only need to do this once or you may need to do it a number of times until you feel released from the story, until you feel the fire subside and new growth beginning.

Humanity is in deep need of forgiveness. Forgiveness is how we heal the world and stop the cycles of suffering. When you hear crazy and horrible things on the evening news, such as the events this week in Boston, remember that forgiveness is your highest calling, it is the energy which will heal the world.  Allow yourself to feel the pain and anger, but also be brave enough to forgive, and wise enough to know that forgiveness is the only way to finally be free.

I also recommend the book “Radical Forgiveness” by Collin Tipping, for those who want to explore forgiveness more deeply. Tipping offers some wonderful and profound exercises in forgiveness and offers new perspective on the negative things which happen in our lives.

Namaste,
Rhea Jamil

Keys to Forgiveness

rainbowForgiveness is letting go of the story you have become attached to. Most of us are attached to our stories, even the negative ones. We think we need those stories to define who we are and to justify our actions and our thinking. We cling to the negative story because it allows us to feel like we have a reason and a meaning for what we have become. The story may have caused you to become someone who is angry, or hurt, or afraid. You might also feel like the story has given you strength and character as well, but know that those positive traits will always stay with you, even when you let the story go – you have those traits because you’ve always had them and perhaps the story allowed you to discover that – but letting go of the story through forgiveness and unconditional love will allow you to be truly free of the anger, hurt or fear that has been created as a result of the story. It is not even about letting someone else off the hook for what they’ve done, it is about letting yourself off the hook from needing to be satisfied with some resolution to something which can never be resolved. Not long ago I read an article about a woman who had forgiven the man who killed her daughter. To explain why she would forgive such a thing she said “[He] owed us a debt he could never repay. And releasing him from that debt would release us from expecting that anything in this world could satisfy us.”1

Forgiveness is releasing yourself from the poison of hate and anger, releasing yourself from being defined by your story, and freeing yourself from the power which the story or person has had in your life. In this way forgiveness is more about you and what you need to be whole, and less about the other person or people who you are forgiving. People who create suffering are suffering deeply themselves, and they tend to perpetuate cycles of suffering through their unconscious actions which are driven from this dark place of suffering. Your choice is to continue to be part of that cycle or to end it. The only way to end it is through forgiveness.

Forgiveness and unconditional love are essentially the same thing, they are the same energy and vibration. Unconditional love is what allows forgiveness to flow, and likewise forgiveness allows unconditional love. It all stems from the recognition that you and the other person are one, and that anything they have done to you has been done in darkness, in unconsciousness and unawareness of the oneness between you. Your soul is made of the stuff of unconditional love. It is what you are. When you tap into this remembering of who you actually are, it becomes easy to forgive, it becomes as natural to you as breathing, because you are simply being exactly what you are. Then forgiveness is as simple as making a choice, just as you choose chocolate or vanilla ice cream. This is not to down-play the significance of this choice, but to show that when you are in your essential self, it is that easy. You choose to forgive – you don’t try to forgive, you don’t work at it – you just choose it. The choice of forgiveness is a release. It is a recognition that you and the person who has wronged you are connected, but that the story you have created with that person is not in alignment with your essential self or your growth and must be left behind in order to move forward on your path. You are not allowing the negative energies which were created between you and the mirror of you in the other person to rule your life and influence your thinking. In my next post I will offer some specific exercises to open the doorway to this kind of forgiveness.

Love and Light,
Rhea Jamil

1 New York Times Magazine, Jan 6, 2013 “Can Forgiveness Play a Role in Criminal Justice?” http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/06/magazine/can-forgiveness-play-a-role-in-criminal-justice.html?pagewanted=all&_r=1&

Non-Attachment: Is It Possible?

Heart-wings

Mind is the creator of attachment, not heart.  Many confuse non-attachment with detachment.  We envision a hermit living life in a cave with no companionship, and that is very unappealing for most of us.  Most of us want to have relationships, to have children, to have friends, to make love, to enjoy life, etc.  Can we do all of that in a state of non-attachment?  Non-attachment is not a lack of love, it is not a lack of connection, quite the opposite.  I would in fact define non-attachment as akin to unconditional love.  Non-attachment is actually a state of very deep connection, connection to source, to self, to all.  It is connection without conditions, without any need to prove anything or for anything else to prove itself to you.  Mind creates ego and ego creates attachment because it needs attachment to feel real, and to feel justified.  It needs to latch on to something to say “aha – that is what I am!”  The soul needs no justification, it does not need anything outside itself to tell it what it is.  The soul thus has no attachments, only the mind does.  Therefore the state of non-attachment is the state of being in deep connection with your soul, and your soul by nature is connected to every being on earth and everything in the universe. 

 

The state of attachment is a state of mind, it is a state of believing that things and situations in the outer world are what define you – your job, your money, your country, your relationships, your story, your talents, etc.  And if you lose one of these things, or if you attach yourself to something that you can’t obtain in the immediate moment (i.e – “I’ll be happy once I have that job, that house, that partner”), you suffer because you feel incomplete as a person, or you feel as if you’ve lost part of yourself.  You also feel fear of losing these things, because fear is imagining the potential future instead of being in the moment.  Thus, another key to non-attachment is living in the moment.  If you are always in fear of losing someone or something, you cannot enjoy the connection which you share in the moment.  The connection you have in the moment with someone, without conditions or fears, is always joyful.  Non-attachment in a relationship, for example, means not that you are detached from the person you are in a relationship with, it means that you are deeply connected, but that you recognize that the connection itself is what matters, and not how it looks to others, or what the outcome of the relationship will be – after all, every relationship you have will eventually end, either through separation or death.  Thus attaching oneself to the outcome of any relationship will only cause suffering.  Because all forms are impermanent, they must be appreciated in the moment, as they are, without conditions.

 

The other mis-perception is that if you are in a state of non-attachment that you won’t ever feel the pain of loss.  The pain of loss, or grief, is part of being human.  Sorry, there is no way around it.  I feel certain that even Buddha and Jesus and all the ascended masters felt the pain of grief at some point during their lives on earth.  It is natural to feel grief-stricken if you lose a fellow human being from the earthly realm.  The difference is only that in a state of non-attachment, the grief will not overtake you, it will not become part of your pain body, your story.  It will be felt, processed, and eventually transmuted.  It will pass through you instead of overtake you.  It will be recognized as a symptom of deep love and connection, along with the awareness that the connection never truly dies.  Connection itself, or love, is the eternal essence within which all impermanent forms arise and fade away.  As Rumi said “The lover’s pain is also the lover’s greatest joy.”  The pain of loss or separation is an aspect of deep connection, and the connection is the source of joy.  This becomes clearer in a state of non-attachment, where all connection is joyful because it is without conditions. 

 

Suffering is the belief that you are not God, that you are not connected to anything else in creation or anyone else on a deeper level.  Because you are out of touch with your connection to anything on the soul level, you instead create attachments via the ego.  These attachments then become what defines you because you are unaware of your true divine nature.  The root of the suffering thus is being unaware of your own divinity and connection to all else.  The attachments are like a symptom of being in that state.  Eastern philosophies such as Buddhism stress the link between attachment and suffering.  The only way to truly release your attachments in the end, is to get in touch with your essential self, your divine self, the part of you that needs no justification, no identity, no attachments.  Then releasing ego-based attachments happens naturally.  To get in touch with your divine, essential self, find the stillness within.  Meditation is the easiest way to do this.  If you do not already have a meditation practice, begin simply by sitting quietly and focusing on the breath, and on the heartbeat.  As thoughts come, simply allow them to pass through without judgment and bring your focus back to the breath and the heartbeat.  The still awareness behind your thoughts is the gateway to the Eden within you.  Non-attachment will flow naturally from that place.  There is no need to focus on non-attachment, it will happen as a result of your heightening consciousness and your connection to your true, divine self.

 

Namaste,

 

Rhea Jamil

Related articles

Union of Opposites

English: Yin & Yang

Nothing can come into being or be sustained without the union of opposite forces: male and female, life and death, day and night, joy and suffering, yin and yang… Between each of these pairs of opposites, there can be union, balance, harmony and truths, or there can be discord, intolerance, imbalance and disunity if one of the two forces is out of balance with the other. What would cause opposite forces to be out of balance? The answer is simple: fear creates imbalance, love creates balance. Think about a simple pare of opposites: male and female. If you are in a relationship, you can easily understand and appreciate how love keeps the relationship balanced, while fear – often fear of loss of the relationship itself, causes all kinds of imbalance. These fears can cause jealousy, possessiveness, or can cause one to shut down their hearts to the other, resulting in “falling out of love.” When the love between the two is unconditional, harmony in the relationship is then possible. So it is with all opposites. The harmony, balance and union between the two can only be found in love.
Let’s look at a pair of opposites which are a little harder for most to reconcile: life and death. Although most of us may wish there was no such thing as death, let’s play out that scenario for a minute. If there is no death, we cannot grow because our cells cannot die and renew themselves. We cannot eat. The caterpillar cannot become a butterfly, in fact nothing can happen at all. Nothing can evolve, nothing can change, nothing can be born because nothing can die. Death is the opposing force that creates life and gives it meaning. Death is what sets everything in motion. This universe was created from the union of life and death.
All that said, I’m now going to say something that will seem completely paradoxical but bear with me: there is no death. Everything is energy, and energy cannot be created or destroyed. That means that everything is eternal. So in that sense there is no true death. The problem is in the way in which we think of death. We think of it as an end, when in actuality it is a transformation. Thus, death in the way that most of us think of it does not exist. It does exist as the force which transforms energy from one form into another. Death is not something to be feared; just as a caterpillar should not fear becoming a butterfly.  Our fear of death is what causes us to become out of balance with life, since fear is the root of imbalance.  Learn to love death – not as the end – but as the gateway to new beginnings, as the impetus of new creation, and life becomes more joyous, as it was meant to be.

-Rhea Jamil