Fishing For Soul

Angling for Spiritual Reconnection

Archive for July, 2009

Do You Accept or Resist Change?

evolution

“See yourself as changing all of the time. Encourage change in others. When you hear yourself uttering a fixed opinion, stop.” – Deepak Chopra

The weather in New York City has been hot and humid this week and we’ve had some amazing thunderstorms. That’s not unusual for late July, at least not from my 19 years of experience as a NYC resident.

Hot. Humid. Storms. Summer. New York City. It makes sense to me.

I heard a bunch of people complaining about the weather the other day and it got me thinking:

EVERYTHING IS TEMPORARY.

EVERYTHING IS IN A STATE OF CONSTANT CHANGE.

Then I was tested on my belief of those thoughts.

This afternoon I stepped out of the subway and into a downpour. I chose to walk in the rain because I wanted to get to my appointment. At first it was easy and enjoyable to wind my way through the dwindling crowds on the sidewalk. It was like a game.

And then the negative thoughts kicked in. I became very annoyed because the condition of my clothes was changing very fast. My shoes, legs, back and part of my bag were getting soaked (an umbrella only covers so much) and I started to think about what I would look like when I arrived at my destination.

I screamed, “I hate this fucking rain!”

rain

As the words emerged I laughed and calmed down. What could I do? The reality was that I was very wet. Soon I would be out of the rain and the drying process would begin. The rain and my wet clothes were a temporary condition. As the saying goes: Nothing lasts forever.

I’m excited about change theses days. I’ve been asking the Universe to help me transform some of my limiting thoughts and behaviors and I’m seeing that my efforts have started to pay off (despite that incident in the rain today!).

At times I’ve resisted the change that I’ve asked for and it has always felt uncomfortable. Why is that?

Here is an explanation:

“Whenever you are consciously asking for an element of your world to expand or contract, you are literally asking your self to expand or contract. The part of you that has lived for many years in the comfort or discomfort of a seemingly steady state often does not want anything to contradict it. Letting go of limitations and allowing something new into your sphere sometimes upsets the apple cart.

As soon as you ‘wake up’ to what is happening you can begin to experience the ease of the transition. It is as if your brilliant mind finally has accepted the new thought pattern. ‘Oh, yes,” it says. “I asked for that. Welcome!” And then the rest of you rushes in to catch up until all of you are playing happily on the same field once more.

It has been our experience that human beings can be very stubborn when it comes to change. The idea of newness often overwhelms and it seems easier for one to retreat into the old pattern and vibration, or so they think.

What would it take for you to become at one with what is happening? How still can you be on the inside when things seem to be spinning all around you?

Chaos is a state of mind. The balance that you seek lives IN YOU. Train your self to always go to that place and you will discover one of the richest treasures of all time.” – With never ending gratitude in an ever evolving world, we are happy to be ‘At One’.

I ask for change and it comes. I don’t ask for change and it comes. I can’t stop it. What a relief to know that! I think I’ll focus on something else now.

Amen!

Today I am grateful for Deepak Chopra (I found the quote above on Deepak’s Twitter page as I was formulating thoughts about this blog. I love when that happens!), Asher’s intuitive healing gifts, thunderstorms, umbrellas, bright blossoms, the smell of marigolds, fresh salad, new business opportunities, my book editor and publisher, and my parents.

Thanks and peace!

Joe

How Bad Do You Want It?

choice

I watched The Secret again last night. It had been more than a year since I’d seen it in it’s entirety and I was once again tingling with excitement as I watched and listened.

While viewing the DVD several things stuck out for me:

1) Focus on what you want, not on what you don’t want

2) Let your good feelings guide you

3) Follow your impulses

4) Get out of your way and allow what you want to come into your life

5) Be grateful

6) Ask yourself: How badly do I want change to come?

Sometimes I need to hear things over and over from many different sources before I get it and it sinks (or rises) to another level. Such was the case last night.

A lot of what I write here on Fishing for Soul is channeled information that comes from my meditations. When I want an answer to a question or am ready to add text to the blog I sit and let the words flow from a source that has been speaking to me and through me since 1993. (Read more about that in my blog post titled ‘In the Beginning…’)

The Secret reminds me to pay closer attention to what that source, which I call At One, is saying. So, my intention is to follow more impulses, to focus more on the big picture, and to be more creative in the way I imagine my life.

As At One says:

‘As Life guides and impulses you to move gently to the place that you want to be, your role becomes even more important.

Pay attention to your thoughts and feelings. Are your thoughts mostly positive minute by minute, or mostly negative? Are those thoughts generating good feelings on a regular basis? Are you sure? Check in and find out.

Clarity is your ally. With clarity by your side you will have no drama to talk about, share and grow.

Make a commitment to YOU and watch as you become more joyful, more healthy, more wealthy, and more of who YOU want to be.

What are you waiting for?”

Amen!

the secret
By the way, I’m happy to have the original DVD version of The Secret from the summer of 2006 that features Esther Hicks channeling Abraham. If you are not familiar with The Secret and Esther Hicks, I highly recommend that you check out both immediately.

Today I am grateful for The Secret, to Jean for turning me on to The Secret, for Sundays, long meditations, my couch, my cat, Harry Potter, trips to new places around the world, inspiration from unusual sources, Hay House Publishing, the Almost Economically Viable team, my fantastic new high-profile clients, my blockbuster BlogTalk Radio show, and my wildly successful T-shirt line.

Thanks and peace!

Joe

If You’ve Got It, Flaunt It: Believing in the Power of YOU.

sunlight

My mind wandered into some murky old places the other day. There were uncomfortable thoughts about my past, present and future lying around in those places and at times I was desperate to escape from the darkness. Those thoughts pushed up powerfullly negative emotions and I was more than a little cranky at times.

“What the heck is this about?” I asked myself repeatedly. “Did I eat too much chocolate last week?” “Is it the energy of the eclipses?” “Am I really so unresolved?”

Knowing that an answer would eventually come and that my negative mind chatter would not last forever, I shared my feelings with friends and sat as quietly as I could in meditation to get the relief I was longing for.

“I think this is about self-worth,” said Lynn.

“Not that again!” I thought as I acknowledged that her words echoed with truth.

Yes! Self-worth. How many times have I let that one trip me up? Well, here it comes again to teach me a bit more about me and the world at large.

“When you believe in who you are, from the very depth of your being, you all ways inspire your self to grow into the person you dream of being. Without the thought that you can have, will have and are worthy of having the BIG LIFE you are calling forth, then there can be little in the way of Universal assistance.

Please remember, as you imagine the life that you want, as you call forth that which you dream of having and being, you may run into a bit of “organized chaos”. Your mind has organized itself for many years NOT to think in ways that are BIG, OUTSIDE THE BOX, FULL OF WORTHINESS. Of course it then would make perfect sense that your untrained mind fights to ‘stay in control’ of that which you are wanting to change. Have you ever noticed that dictators often put up a fight to stay in power before their regime topples? Once you ride the wave of discomfort that you have created in order to know who you truly are, then you can fully enjoy that which waits for you on the other side.

Embrace all parts of the journey and remember: YOU are the main component of all that is around you. YOU are in charge. YOU are so very powerful. YOU are an amazing beacon of light. YOU are worthy of all the good things that come your way and worthy of all that you think you want to create in this EXTRAORDINARY LIFE.” – At One

And so I say, “Amen.”

Today I am grateful for yet another opportunity to shed light on the darkness that lives inside of me, for the friends who help in that process, for meditation, my ruthlessly compassionate guides and teachers, the past, the present and the future, the abundance that awaits all ways, the chocolate that keeps finding it’s way into my hands and mouth, my students at the Y, and the weekend.

Thanks and peace!

Joe

Judge Me, Please! Part 2

I’ve been coming across a bunch of news articles and videos lately that are challenging the views of many Americans on race, sexuality, and religion: the debate over the U.S. Supreme Court nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor, the antics of actor Sacha Baron Cohen as the gay character Bruno, and the Texas State Board of Education questioning whether to bring religious teachings more fully into public schools.

Those dialogues excite and encourage me. It reminds me that things truly are changing, and they are changing rapidly and publicly.

I have to admit that at times I have been shocked by the things that have come out of the mouths of ‘leaders’ and ‘pundits’. A Facebook friend brought a video clip from MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show to my attention. Maddow and her guest, fellow MSNBC correspondent Pat Buchanan, have a very heated discussion about Affirmative Action. I am glad to see that both Pat Buchanan and Rachel Maddow let their true selves shine.

Watching the clip below made me consider the moments when I think, feel, and act from a place of love or fear based on the story I tell myself and the world around me.

“Question your thinking, change the world,” says Byron Katie. Love doesn’t know judgement, it just accepts what is. Fear says, “You suck,” or “They are wrong.”

My meditation about this yielded the following answers:

“You are noticing a shift around you in part because you are changing your perspective. One cannot expect to grow in the physical world and wear the same pair of shoes from the age of 6 to 60. Why would you expect your spiritual growth to be any different? Your limiting views must change so that you can achieve the goals that you have set for your self. It really is very simple: You change, and the world around you as you once ‘thought’ it to be changes as well. As you continue to know your self and treat your self with abundant love, honor and respect, there is less and less room for you NOT to love, honor and respect others. Which will you choose: a vision of your self and the world that is critical and fearful, or a view that is expansive, loving, kind, generous and open all ways?” – At One

The practice continues…

Today I am grateful for provocative questions and answers, truthful friends, quiet afternoons, new business relationships, coconut water, blueberries, YouTube, WordPress, beautifully colored & inspirational Be Open T-shirts, constant change, and sobriety.

Thanks and peace!

Joe

KISS: Keep It Simple Sweetheart

leaf
I’ve recently been looking at the number of projects on my plate, what I’ve created, and what I feel responsible for. Sometimes I get so excited about things that I want to manifest that I don’t realize until I’m half-way into my new project that I’ve neglected some aspect of another project. A good friend has asked me on more than one occasion how I manage to do so many things at once. Hmm… It’s time to take a closer look at that.

“Within each day there are a multitude of opportunities that await. As you choose how, when and where to expend your energy, we invite you to consider keeping your activities to a minimum. This will allow you to accomplish more within the few activities you choose, rather than using your resources in a way that depletes them. Combine your brilliant mind with the light of your heart and you will find that ‘work’ is not ‘work’, but rather an expenditure of time and energy that all ways brings you the results you are seeking. Being mindful means that you are aware of what you are putting in and what you are getting back. Pay attention to the details by paying attention to how you feel throughout the day. Do you feel good? If yes, then why? If no, then why? Simplicity is a great teacher. What are you willing to learn from it?” – At One

Amen.

Today I am grateful for a cool evening breeze, hot days at the beach, time to reconnect with friends, digging in the Earth, the NYC MTA, a good night’s sleep, dreams, words, music, the laughter of children, and all the details.

Thanks and peace!

Joe

Imagining and Living Your Best Life

believe
“Whenever you find your self thinking and dreaming about what you want, please know that you are in the process of making it happen. Life starts with a thought. Ask your self what it is that will make you supremely happy, abundantly overjoyed, outrageously satisfied. Feel the feelings that your thoughts generate. Now take action and watch as your most wonderful life unfolds.

You may ask, ‘Is it really that easy?’ We say ‘Yes!’ At times you may find that you need to clear away the clutter before your dreams manifest, or that things may need to be put in divine order for you, but your wishes are all ways answered. They may sometimes appear to be answered in a way that does not conform to what you’d expect, but what you receive (when you allow your self that gift) is guaranteed to be the perfect match based on your conscious and unconscious thoughts and feelings. You attract from where you are.

The Universe will all ways guide you to the places that need to be illuminated, worked on, or healed. When you ‘do the work’ you will find that life is incredibly easy to navigate. If you want to see in the dark, you turn on a light. Do that on the inside. Light up your heart and mind and let ‘The Powers That Be’ assist you in all you do. That’ is magic!” – At One

Amen!

Today I am grateful for moments when I am led out of the dakness, when I am fed by the light, when life surprises me. I am grateful for my incredibly healthy body, mind and spirit, for hot days in NYC, for dancing under the stars, for friends to laugh with, for chocolate, peanut butter and blueberries, for my garden, for my breath, my computer, and the ability to put my thoughts out into the world and see things manifest so beautifully in return.

Thanks and peace!

Joe

Judge Me, Please! Lessons from Bruno and Byron Katie.

Bruno
Curiosity got the best of me on Tuesday and I went to see Bruno, the new Sacha Baron Cohen movie. Cohen’s last movie was Borat and was quite controversial in it’s depiction of racism and bigotry in America. Bruno pushes many of the same envelopes.

As described by the Telegraph.co.uk web site, “Bruno follows the exploits of a flamboyantly gay Austrian fashion reporter as he attempts to make it big in America.

The film has already caused controversy, with some of those duped by the character threatening legal action.

There has also been disquiet among some gay rights activists over the perceived negative way it portrays homosexuality.”

I understand why some people may find the character and the film offensive. Cohen, a talented improvisional comic, takes many of the most threatening gay male characteristics and shoves them down the viewer’s throat (so to speak).

What I came away from the movie with was the renewed sense that there are, and may always be, people who judge others based on sexuality, sex, skin color, financial situation, career, level of education, country of origin, religion, etc. No surprise there.

This past April I attended a weekend workshop led by the author and self-inquiry expert Byron Katie. At the end of the two-day experience, Katie asked the audience to insult her, to judge her.
byron kaite
“You think you know more than us,” yelled a woman.

“Yes. Thank you,” responded Katie after a brief pause and a breath.

“You think you’re better than us,” said another.

Again Katie nodded and replied, “Yes, thank you.”

“Katie, you’re a fucking bitch!” shouted a man in the front row.

Many in the audience gasped.

“Yes,” said Katie again before pausing. “I have sex with my husband and sometimes I’m bitchy. Yes. Thank you.”

The point of the exercise, according to the brilliant Byron Katie (my judgement), was to set an example of how one can choose to react to judgement. Katie noted that she always paused before responding. That and her answer of “Yes, thank you” acknowledged that at some point in her life she had, in the very least, the thought which matched the judgement.

She also explained that the usual reaction to the last person’s insult may have been to say, “Oh, did you hear him? How dare he say that to me?” All the while she would be gathering people on her side to prove how right she is. Meanwhile, the man is likely to gather people on his side and and do his best to convince them that he is right. Then both sides rally against the other. “And that is how war begins,” said Katie.

How can we loosen the grip that judgement has on us? I asked that question in meditation and this is what I heard:

“When you are threatened or insulted by the words or deeds of another, it may be a good time to reflect upon your own words and deeds. When was the last time you held judgement against someone? When did you last judge your self?

We would invite you to all ways start with your self. Look at the ways you judge and criticize YOU. If there is no self-critic, then how can there be one who criticizes others?

One of the beautiful things about human beings is that they are so outwardly different. How wonderfully creative and original Source is! And as the embodiment of Source, you are all the same ‘on the inside’. Look beyond the external and come to see for your self that a magnificent life awaits you, free of drama, insults, criticism, anger and despair.

Here, now, is an opportunity to grow into the best you, the brighest you, the lightest you. What are you waiting for?” – At One

Amen!

Today I am grateful for the opportunity to know and love myself more deeply, for moments when I grow into the dreams I dream, for my friends and family all over the world, for provocative films, for freedom of speech, my ability to be who I am, for all the new business opportunities that await me, for my breath and my body.

Thanks and peace!

Joe