Posts Tagged ‘spirit’

How Can I Turn My Day Around?

June 20, 2012

The challenge of a bad mood, bad news, depression, or some upset faces all of us often in our lives, and many assume we are helpless targets just waiting for things to change again.  We go through life wanting this or that circumstance to be different so that we can be “happy”.  Many of us, if asked what happy is, cannot answer.  We’re stumped and silent, suddenly realizing that we have no measure of what “happy” actually is.  It’s a word that means better, doesn’t it?  It makes everything okay, right?  The problem is that if we don’t know what it is, we will never recognize if we have it.  Aiming for a target that is invisible, we stumble around shooting arrows at “happy” and wondering why we don’t get any.  It’s no wonder so many are feeling out of control, like life is a crap shoot, hoping someone has a magic prescription that will make it better.

 

We hope to win a lottery, because money seems to be the thing that everyone wants more of so that they can get more of what they want and feel powerful.  We think that if only we had this, or that, or if someone loved us more, or if we had more vacations, everything would change and this bad feeling would stop.  We numb ourselves out with tv, alcohol, and drugs or food.  We work harder, exercise more, and read more self help books.  There seems to be no end to what we’ll try to “feel” better!

 

Something subtle happens, however, when a person begins to experience consciousness.  That is, awakening from the robotic state of going through life on auto-pilot, accepting everything at face value, never questioning the status quo.  Through grace, at some point in our eternal existence as souls in bodies, we begin to emerge from the slumber in small increments usually (not always), and we realize that we have choice.

 

A typical scenario for awakening is a tragedy or loss, a sudden change that is unexpected, or an emotional crisis.  We were going along on automatic and without warning, someone we love died, or the truck hit our car, or we found out we had a terrible illness, or we lost our job, our livelihood.  That feeling of being without familiar foundation, without ground to stand on, nowhere to turn for relief, intense pain and suffering brings us to a deeper place of searching if it doesn’t destroy us.  We look for the meaning, we find support in places we may never expect, and we turn our awareness to the moment because focusing on the future isn’t always possible in times like these.

 

The things that bring us to our knees bring us to the moment.  In the moment, we can find strength we never knew we had, and a sense of surrender that will not be denied.  When we submit to what is, space opens up and things move.  Even in a moment of simple unhappiness over something more mundane and simple, if we are willing to allow the emotion and feel the sadness, anger, frustration, the emotion can flow and what is underneath it can be revealed.  Quite simply, allowing the emotions, rather than stifling them, is the direct pathway into wisdom, relief, and higher consciousness.  So let the tears flow…really feel…and in experiencing your humanity you will be freed.

Visionary Vegan Turned Praying Carnivore?

June 18, 2012

Diet seems to encourage conversation easier than many other topics. I notice this when I post a status update on Facebook that’s about food, and immediately the responses start pouring in, whereas if I post a prayer I might get one or two responses over time.   Not everyone prays, but I think it’s safe to say that every one of us eats. 

Vegetarianism, veganism, and raw-ism are some controversial topics in today’s world.  We heard a sermon, believe it or not, on veganism yesterday and it was conversationally stimulating, to say the least.  In fact, we are still talking about it, reacting to it, and in wonder about it.  It caused such intense reactions in the audience that the minister received some anonymous hate mail on her windshield.  I’d say that if one can elicit this type of reaction, then they are making some waves that cause growth one way or another.

A vegetarian for 21 years, a vegan for 3 years, and two different month long forays into a raw diet, I have some things to say on the topic.  I feel that I’ve explored different diets and the lifestyles that go with them.  I’ve even encountered health afflictions created by some of them.  My sweetheart reminds me that we visited veganism together twenty years ago and gave it our full monty…and have lived to tell the story, too.

My personal journey into vegetarianism first as a spiritual choice and then a health choice was not so difficult. My Higher Power made it abundantly clear to steer from cows by downloading an intense vision of a live cow being forced through a meat grinder as I bit into a Big Mac one day at a drive-thru.  That first bite was spit out vehemently and was the last bite of red meat I was to take for the next 23 years.

I was religious about it.  My poor mother tried to make my fiancé and I some vegetable soup one day and thought she could get away with a beef broth base without my noticing.  Wrong.  The soup ended up in the toilet.  I forced her to sit thru a Tofurkey at Thanksgiving against her will, and when she brought home what used to be my favorite dish ever, a live lobster that was a gift from a friend, I was mortified.  I begged and pleaded, tear streaming down my face, not to boil that lobster.  She finally relented and handed it to me, and I drove to the canal and sent it home in front of a fisherman at the dock who stood there with a strange look on his face.

My day of reckoning came when I became so ill I couldn’t eat.  My stomach was on fire, and my skin had broken out.  A plague of symptoms too terrible and personal to list had befallen me, and the doctor couldn’t help.  Nothing helped. As a final attempt at relief, I sought out a holistic nutritional doctor that a friend recommended, and they determined that my body had developed severe sensitivities to every substance foundational to my diet.  What was left to eat now?  Bark?  Trees?  Dirt?  It was indeed a big dilemma.

For a year or so I lived on meager fixin’s where no meat, no gluten, no soy, no wheat, no tomatoes and no yeast or dairy passed my lips.  It was impossible to eat at a restaurant, and it was painfully boring, but at least I wasn’t suffering from the horrible food reactions anymore.

Then I became pregnant and a new lesson was in store for me.  Five months in I could not stay awake, falling asleep even standing up.  I was exhausted, depleted, and unwell.  The doctor announced severe anemia, and no amount of pills or Floradix, or prune juice could fix it.  I was actually craving steak in my dreams.  And so, with great trepidation and deep concern, we went to a restaurant to order the first steak in well over two decades.  I couldn’t even bear to cook it myself, nor did I even know how.  That was a rough meal for me and for my beloved, who had to cut the meat for me because I couldn’t bear to.  The lifting of the fork was a push/pull, wanting to eat and not wanting to eat.

My baby’s life depended on it, though, and so eat I did.  I made peace with what was, in my own way.  Having a strong background in spiritual studies, my intention was pure and I prayed over that cow, chicken, fish hard and long before partaking.  Heck, I had been practicing praying over vegetables before chopping them for decades as well.

This was the full circle of my experience with extreme diets, and it’s not even touching on weight loss diets I’ve tried.  The message was very clear after this, that I had no right to judge anyone who ate meat or didn’t eat meat, nor did I have a right to presume that I knew best what they should be eating or whether they were ignorant or enlightened about food.  Even judging someone who is beginning to find their consciousness in what they eat is entitled to their experience without judgment.  I was that person who was zealous in my newfound passion for saving the lives of animals, cleaning up the planet, and honoring life the best I could.  I was also that person that had to eat things I would rather not have eaten, for survival and health purposes. 

Nowadays, I practice conscious choices and prayer, raising the vibration of whatever I consume, and forgiving myself when I forget or when I choose things I know aren’t good for me.  My current path is one of love and healing towards that which I consume, praying with deep gratitude for whatever gave of itself so that I could live.  I make the best choices that I can in terms of whether to purchase leather or cloth, natural or synthetic.  There are arguments in every direction for what is best or worst and it seems that evidence can be found in every direction according to one’s intention.

My mantra is balance in all things.  Balance is a good place to seek and a beautiful place to land.

 

 


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