Find/Experience Water : Create a Spiritual Practice in 15 Minutes a Day

For many of us in “civilized” places this seems like a silly statement.  After all,  you don’t have to go much further than the nearest sink to “find” water, right?

But this practice is a little more than that — it’s about finding a source of water nearby, whether literally – the little stream down the block, or figuratively – finding the flow and connection in your relationships, work or family.

Water is powerful and submissive.  It has no shape of its own, rather it must take the shape of its container.

Guyton’s Textbook of Medical Physiology states that “the total amount of water in a man of average weight (70 kilograms) is approximately 40 liters, averaging 57 percent of his total body weight. In a newborn infant, this may be as high as 75 percent of the body weight, but it progressively decreases from birth to old age, most of the decrease occurring during the first 10 years of life. Also, obesity decreases the percentage of water in the body, sometimes to as low as 45 percent” (per Wikipedia)

Everywhere I look I read that approximately 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered in water and in my practice as a palmist I can say that at least 70% of my clients have a preponderance of the water element in their hands (either on fingerprints or their elemental shape).

There’s no end to our fascination with water.  We need it to sustain our bodies, to provide transportation and trade, to cleanse and renew.

So today, take a moment to experience water, whether it’s rain (or snow) on your upturned face, a quiet moment beside a stream, a river, a lake or a dam, or focus on your specific action when you’re filling your glass and your body with water.

Thinking about water, what (if anything) does it mean to you?  Is water a theme worth exploring in your work, your life and your day?

Listen to the Birds: Create a Spiritual Practice in 15 Minutes a Day

Get in the habit of listening to birds.

To be honest with you I didn’t think much about birds for most of my growing up years.  Sure, they must have been flying and twittering and nesting and squawking all around my suburban NJ home but I admit I haven’t got a clue what birds were most prominent and what they sounded like.  On family drives and hikes my Mom would point out a bird and say something like, “Look at that beautiful bird!” and being the pre-teen or teen that I was I’d look over and see something fleeting away across the wood and shrug.

At some later date in my early adulthood I developed a fear of birds.  It probably stemmed from being dive-bombed by Catbirds along the walkways at the University of Maryland.   Every spring in the news you still hear stories about these birds diving passers-by in parks as they try to defend their nests.  To me it was scary and ludicrous – what the heck would I want with their nest anyway?

That goes to show you how very disconnected I was with Mother Nature and her creatures!  I’d be walking to work in the City from the metro and be scampering and flailing my hands as I tried to avoid birds!  I can even remember my friends sending me a postcard from St. Mark’s Square – you know, where all those birds famously gather outside the fountain?  They figured I’d never venture to Italy given the sheer enormity of the bird population there and they said so on the postcard.

So what happened?

I started a pet-care company.  Eventually a new client called and they had a bird.  A big bird.  Her name was Gwen and she was the most gorgeous creature I’d ever met.  She’s an Umbrella Cockatoo.  That’s a pretty big bird and I figured I’d have to learn to understand and accept her beauty or I’d not live up to my standards of pet care.  The clients were wonderful people who introduced me to Gwen with care and compassion and also helped me learn the best ways to care for her in their absence.   Over time Gwen and I became fast friends.

I was fascinated by her “like human” personality and her desire to cuddle and be stroked like a puppy.   In most cases I felt she was simply waiting for me to catch up and figure out what to do next in terms of our time together.  I also enjoyed watching her as she observed the other birds and critters out the back window.  She’d get excited when she heard birds calling to each other at dinner time and she’d get visibly upset when a hawk was circling over head – as though she was trying to warn the other birds out back to get out of the way.

So my journey began into the multi-faceted world of birds.  I’ve read much about how different cultures throughout millennia have looked to birds as augers of events both horrific and grand, I’ve learned how different species represent different sides to our own human personality and I’ve been humbled by the diligence and humor that the birds nesting in my yard have about their daily lives. 

Taking time to listen to the bird calls in the morning and evening and to sit in quiet contemplation – without expectation – is a peaceful and joyful way to start your spiritual practice. 

Your 15 minute mission today is simply to walk outside, find a comfortable perch and listen to the birds.  While you’re listening you may want to contemplate some of these thoughts:

“In order to see birds it is necessary to become part of the silence.” ~ Robert Lynd

“A bird does not sing because it has an answer.  It sings because it has a song.” ~ Chinese Proverb

“Use what talents you possess: The woods would be very silent if no birds sang except those that sang best.” ~Henry Van Dyke

“The reason birds can fly and we can’t is simply because they have perfect faith, for to have faith is to have wings.” ~ James Matthew Barrie

Now that wasn’t so bad was it?  What, if anything did you glean from your time with the birds?

What thoughts popped into your head that you thought were totally random?

Share your “birding” experience with your fellow 15-minute spirituality travelers!

Create a Spiritual Practice

There are a number of people who know me who just don’t believe that I was ever a kinetic, Type-A, non-stop doer whose only vision of spirituality was either an outdated patriarchy or a cult.

Yet that’s who I was when I first had my hands read in 2004.    Even though I knew something was missing in my inner life and even though I was skeptically interested in esoteric and metaphysical subjects I just didn’t see myself as a Spiritual person, much less a Spiritual teacher/guide/coach.

People who run into me now who haven’t seen me since then ask about what’s changed as they feel an energetic shift in me when we re-connect.  New contacts are always curious about how I seem to be so calm or how I create time in a busy life for a spiritual practice.  They’re looking for ways to build their psychic muscle, or to trust their intuition, or to find some peace and compassion, or to let go of disappointment and they want tools to make it happen.

It’s frustrating to think that we cannot have exactly what we want, when we want it.  With the internet and all our amazing technology we have the ability to connect, transform and investigate in the flip of a few keystrokes.  However, creating a spiritual practice seems so much more daunting, right?  It’s one thing to look up “spiritual practice  how-to” in Google and get over 3 million hits and another to simply commit to creating a spiritual practice.

Thus the birth of “Create a Spiritual Practice in 15 Minutes a Day” – a new series on this blog meant to give you guidance and inspiration for creating your own spiritual practice. You can take the things that work for you and build on them, tweak them and put them to work for you each day and you can simply try out the ones that seem foreign or different or intriguing.  The only rule is that you have an open mind and that you are willing to take the journey – for you.  Not for me, not for your mom and not because you want world-domination – rather because you want to re-connect with the grace and wisdom that you came to the planet to share.

That is all you must do.  Show up and join the journey.

I’d never seen this quote before

But I caught a poster or plaque with this on it out of the corner of my eye this morning while running errands I think (it was that fleeting that I don’t remember where I saw it) and then, just now, playing around on StumbleUpon it popped up again.

Usually my Angels and Guides use 3s to send me messages – but today it’s possible I missed the third posting.  And this was so unusual on so many levels that I’m saying thanks for the reminder that despite yesterday’s fears, I deserve to be loved. Wholly and completely.  By me.

What little signs are you noticing (or shrugging off as “just coincidences”) that are meant to guide you on your life purpose journey?

Fear & Loathing & Homer Simpson (or this is not the post I set out to write)

A very long week last week and another on the horizon.  Feel like I’m playing catch-up and using it as an excuse for staying small.

I’ve been stalling on some big things lately — and it occurs to me that fear is masquerading in this morass of emails, worries and to-do lists.  I think I may be making it bigger than it needs to be.  I’m afraid that if I plow forward, commit my energy and nothing will happen then I’ll be in a continuously contentious place with my self-righteousness and moral indignation.

Yeah, I’m afraid of being a loser.  Or losing my love relationship if I commit whole-hog to doing whatever it takes to my business succeed.

Either or.

Intellectually, I realize that’s hogwash.  That I deserve and can have both.  I have coaches who remind of this and I have role models who model success in love and in business and in life.

Oh, and from a marketing perspective – I should definitely NOT be sharing this raw truth with you. After all, I’m supposed to have answers.  I’m supposed to be helping you put YOU into your business and your relationships so that you can have more fun and more money…and here I am … saying I’m afraid that this very thing is not going to happen for me.  D’oh. It’s like the Homer Simpson of marketing moves…but, it’s the truth, so you have to know or you won’t ever know who you’re really working with when you work with me.  (Warts and all, I get you if you’re scared.)

I’ll be digging deeper, and sharing what I find out.  Hope you’re enjoying spring (or Fall if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere) and that you’ll share your stories of love and success with me in the comments.

Jupiter Stars, Prescriptions & Exhaustion

Since declaring yesterday, in no uncertain terms, that I’m no longer going to be a pushover, that from now on I’m going to stand up for myself when I normally would just shrug my shoulders and think “C’est la vie,” I’ve been sort of side-swiped into having to face the reality of what it really means not to put up with “good enough.”

And it’s tiring.  I’m tired.

This isn’t about me being a bully or picking fights just to be difficult.  I’ll still stand by the idea that at my core I’m a lover,  not a fighter.  However, this “new” me isn’t going to simply roll over and play dead just  because I’m not willing to ruffle a few feathers. Which is precisely what the Jupiter Star on BOTH MY HANDS have been insisting I do all along. For 5 years now I’ve been staring at those Jupiter mounts and their accompanying stars and thinking – “Hmmm.  I’m not hiding out from power, I’m perfectly happy being in charge of my life.” Clearly, I’ve finally gotten the cosmic smack on the head I need to realize that maybe, just maybe, I need to be a tad better at owning my freaking power.

I’m still maneuvering this new and improved version of me, so I’m sure there are going to be some challenges.  There are going to be moments when I lose my cool at the wrong time or with the wrong person (so I remind myself daily — “never shoot the messenger”)  and there are going to be times that I go to the mat and get my say but don’t get my way.  Hopefully with enough practice I’ll recognize how to be true to me and my decision to never settle in any area of my life and still be a human being who loves.

Today though, I wish I’d taken this stance on a Monday when I was feeling refreshed and not still sick.  I’ve had to back-burner my continuing “discussions” with Comcast Cable because there’s more research to be done and to be frank, I’m not up to it today.  I’m frustrated that my attorney hasn’t gotten back to me about a seemingly simple question I posed yesterday and I’m downright ticked off that my doctor did not call in the RX he said he would and now I have to wait til Monday to call and figure out that snafu.

In the grand scheme of things — all are manageable, and I don’t intend to fly off the handle to get these things managed.  In the past, I probably would have let them all slide just because, and that’s the difference.  The awareness that I’m captaining this ship that is my life — and while I know I have some amazing guidance in the form of Angels, Guides and others, I can’t simply roll over and say to myself that “it will all work out,” without a plan for working it out.

I’d love to hear your thoughts – am I crazy?  How do you handle the irritations large and small that cross your path each day?