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Commitment

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Independence Requires Letting Go Of Dependency

   The Freedom to Be Tree

The Freedom to Be Tree

Dependency is a basic violation of Universal law. The Universe operates on independence. The Universe operates on individuality. It operates on separation in every shape and form. … The minute you become dependent upon anyone in any way you no longer have any power to move forward in your own pattern, in your own blueprint, and on your own behalf. You come to a halt. Gregge Tiffen (Finding Freedom: The Meaning of Independence, July, 2007)

… we and we alone are the authors of our own freedom.

Reflect on Gregge’s quote for a few moments. You may discover a key to why you sometimes feel stuck, frustrated, or impotent. You may discover a deeper source of the pervasive angst in society. If you dig deep enough, you may discover as I have that breaking the bonds of dependence requires vigilance, courage, and commitment. Freedom isn’t a free ride. It’s not for the faint-hearted. Yet, it is your divine birthright.

Another Independence Day is approaching here in the United States, the 242th since a small band of visionary revolutionaries, some of whom had deep mystical understanding, declared independence and set a course for a new nation.  As we make plans to celebrate once again, I wonder if we/I really know what freedom is. Do we/I know the importance of exercising our independence? Do we/I even know how?

As I observe the political landscape, I see and hear demands for freedom. Fear that someone who is ‘different from me’ will take our freedom away is rampant.  It seems we’ve lost our understanding that the source of freedom and independence is not man or government. Rather, freedom is our gift from the Universe. Independence is Universal law.  Dependence is a violation of that law.

And yet we’ve created and continue to support dependence in our systems of government, education, business, as well as in our personal relationships. We give life to these systems and to other people when we depend on them as our source. We’ve become dependent on jobs, clients, government agencies and circumstances for our happiness and our well-being. We expect others to ‘be there’ for us, and we may be dependent on them needing us as well.  In doing so, we abdicate our freedom, our power to choose, and to express our authentic selves.

It’s no wonder that the level of frustration, angst, and fear has reached revolutionary proportions. We aren’t being true to our nature. We desperately want to find our way back. So we revolt. Many lash out at the ‘powers that be’ as if they are the source. Others wisely recognize that change starts within and that individual responsibility is key to the exercise of freedom.

A first step in taking responsibility is recognition that the tyranny of dependence is in part self-imposed. From that awareness we are in a position to declare our own, personal independence and begin to ‘unlearn’ dependence. This unlearning requires courage, awareness, commitment, self-honesty, and trust. It is not a project, but rather a life-long process.

We restore our independence by identifying dependencies we’ve allowed to creep in: awareness by awareness, step by step, choice by choice. We learn from experience and commitment that our independence is mostly an inside job, made more challenging in a culture that fosters dependence as a means to control.  Yet, in the final analysis we and we alone are the authors of our own freedom.

NOTE – this post was originally written and posted on 7-7-2016.  With a bit of refreshing, it still seems apropos today as I reflect on the sad state of governance and on our misunderstanding of the true source of our independence. http://cindyreinhardt.com/blog/breaking-the-chains-of-dependence

   Thanks for Letting Me Roam Free on Our Walks Mom.

Thanks for Letting Me Roam Free on Our Walks Mom.

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Life Is Learning. Learning IS Life

   Ever vigilant Luke on a Christmas Day hike.

Ever vigilant Luke on a Christmas Day hike.

It’s unfortunate that life, as a learning experience provided by the Universe, isn’t seriously considered very early in life. If it were, you’d embrace, utilize, and enjoy what life experience is giving you all the time. Gregge Tiffen (Open Secrets: Mystical Longings – January, 2011) -- [You can find it here: https://smile.amazon.com/Open-Secrets-Mystical-Gregge-Tiffen-ebook/dp/B01LG9UBFM/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1515626615&sr=1-1&keywords=Mystical+Longings+-+Gregge+Tiffen]

This week I found myself imagining a world where we humans aren’t bumping into one another so much. That is, a peace-filled world rather than the one we’re navigating where it seems we have to be ever vigilant to maintain our sense of self – self-control, self-worth, and self-commitment.

In reflecting on this need to be hyper-observant, even careful (can you imagine ‘filled with CARE’?) in the midst of the world’s chaos, I came back to a Universal tenet that anchors me when I look out at and need to engage with that world:  Life is for learning. Remembering this is especially helpful when I’m in the midst of a challenging event. I am here – in this body at this time to do just that - learn. So are we all. And, wow, the opportunities are vast, perhaps even infinite!

But just how do we embrace the concept that ‘life is learning; learning is life’ with ease? How do we avoid overwhelm and pressure at the sheer vastness of what is available for us to learn? Here are some possibilities to consider.

  • Recognize that you are always learning, even if you discover that you aren’t.
  • Give yourself credit for ALL you have learned during this sojourn, whether it’s learning to tie your shoes or discovering what you don’t yet know. Celebrate how much you know and what is still to be discovered.
  • Avoid comparing your learning to that of others. Your learning is as unique to you as your fingerprint.
  • Use what you know. Experiment. There’s no ‘good, bad, right, wrong’ in learning only discovery of what works and what doesn’t.
  • Acknowledge that no one is grading your learning! The Universe does not make mistakes.
  • Embrace the idea that learning is a never-ending journey. There is no end, and each new tidbit of knowledge is a completed step on the path.
  • Define what you want to learn, and take your first step toward acquiring that knowledge.
  • Expect the unexpected and delight in new information and insights that seem to come out of nowhere.
  • Question everything, especially things that you think you already know.
  • Use your senses – all five + one of them. Some of our greatest learning can come from strengthening our ability to gain information from our senses.
  • Listen to your ‘gut’ (your instinct or whatever name you give your innate sense of knowing) over what the world tells you.
  • Travel the learning road at your pace. Adjust your speed to fit conditions.
  • Recognize that all knowledge has the potential to become wisdom, and allow that wisdom to emerge in its time.
  • BREATHE! Plop yourself in the driver’s seat. Fasten your seat belt. Relax. Have fun. Enjoy the ride!
   Gentleness resting in the woods out back.

Gentleness resting in the woods out back.

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Front and Center

   Oh what a beautiful morning!

Oh what a beautiful morning!

Whatever you have in front of you is what you have in front of you. That’s it! Gregge Tiffen (Open Secrets: Creative Power Released – July, 2011)

The simplicity of this statement struck me as I woke from a nap and reached for one of Gregge’s booklets in search of my focus for this week’s post.  Life truly is as simple as living in the now, focused on what is in front of us – front and center.

From ancient spiritual traditions to best-selling self-help books today, this teaching is found throughout. Yet simple does not mean easy. And, hey, it seems we humans have been working on this for a very long time.

We make life complex by layering past experiences or concerns about the future (and sometimes both at the same time) onto whatever is in front of us. Over time I’ve noticed that quite often whatever I’m fretting about in my head has nothing to do with what’s in front of me at that moment.

In its infinite wisdom, the Universe does not engage in the past or the future. It doesn’t worry over what it did yesterday or even billions of years ago. Done is done. And, the Universe doesn’t fret about tomorrow or the next election. What will be, will be.

 This doesn’t mean that we don’t reflect on and learn from our past. That’s a natural and necessary ingredient for our growth and development. Likewise, it doesn’t mean that we don’t care about and put attention on the direction of our future. We give each their time. We learn. We make adjustments. At their time, each is front and center. Then we move to what’s next. With discipline and practice, we do so without the past or future successfully claiming bit parts in our present.

Pure and simple, no matter how great or how small (but, who cares about size?), the opportunity before you IS. That’s it. With full attention on THAT, take a step, then another. Leave the past in its place. Let the future unfold as it is sure to do.

P.S. In the three short hours since I penned this post, I’ve been humbled (yet again) by how easily my thoughts wander and by the vast range of that wandering. On our morning walk I caught myself revisiting an old conflict rather than fully taking in the beauty of the mountains and the sky as the sun made its way to the top of the ridge. I chuckled as I put my attention on that and bid the past adieu. A short while later as I watered the garden I noticed myself being annoyed by what needed to be done there later rather than putting attention on the water falling on the bounty.  What’s in front of me is simple. Putting my full attention there requires commitment, awareness, and vigilance. Step by step may I rise to what is front and center NOW.

   When I'm present, I notice the subtle beauty of first light filtering through the woods.

When I'm present, I notice the subtle beauty of first light filtering through the woods.

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Going All Out

   Going All Out for Halloween!

Going All Out for Halloween!

Waste is the one thing that the Universe does not allow, and to ignore the ‘Great Pumpkin’ of why you are here is a waste. You become part of your own excitement when you recognize that you living your life is you being revealed to you. Now that is productive! Gregge Tiffen (The Great Pumpkin: Was Charlie Brown Right? October, 2007)

I’m away from my normal environment this week, spending time on Colorado’s Front Range in the Boulder/Denver area, a few days in suburbia and a few in the heart of the City. Being away typically stimulates different reflections and new points of awareness. This trip is no different. Among several such points of reflection was noticing the abundance of Halloween decorations on our walks in the neighborhood where I’m visiting a friend.

After an initial snarky judgement (who me?), I found myself curious about the idea of ‘going all out’. Since I generally don’t go all out for decorations, I asked myself just what I’m inspired to go ‘all out’ for.

Ah, the Great Pumpkin of life was inviting my attention, offering the possibility of new awareness from my observations and judgments. Something new was being revealed, a new lens from which to reflect and, perhaps, to make adjustments:

  • What does it mean to me to ‘go all out’?
  • What do I go all out for in my life?
  • What new possibilities offer the opportunity to go all out?

My quick first list included much of how I live my life: my self-care, care for Luke, care for my home, as well as care for my coaching clients, bed & breakfast guests, and friends. Creating this weekly post and my commitment to my personal and spiritual learning and growth are other areas that I identified. Pretty satisfying.

The list led me to realize that, for me, ‘going all out’ is an inside job before it becomes an outside expression. It means bringing forth the best that is in me whatever that is moment to moment, without regard for what I’m doing. It requires that I be clear and harmonious. I need to keep the world’s chaos at bay and maintain balance within.

‘Going all out’ for me means what Gregge calls “attending to our own creativity”, whether I’m engaged in the day to day activities that make up life or in a big creative project. From that perspective, I can ask ‘what do I want to go all out for now, next and I can stay tuned into me to discover just what that will be.  And, that’s a pretty exciting thought to take out for a walk with my friend and our beloved pups on this beautiful, warm autumn day.

   Or Maybe I'll Go Play With a Dragon ...

Or Maybe I'll Go Play With a Dragon ...

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