Friday, May 31, 2013

Manifesting at 4am in San Clemente

Full moon over headquarters in San Clemente

It was something I used to do and while it was truly profound it somehow made its way to the backburner. I was religious about it. It was my favorite part of the day.

My "4am Hour of Manifesting" was replaced with childcare and sleep deprivation, a brief seasonal imbalance.

But that time has passed. The baby is a toddler and a nice solid sleeper at that. Keep her up one more hour at night and I have my precious morning time back.

I feel like the kryptonite has been removed from my immediate vicinity.

That magic early morning time to have a cup of coffee, journal, stare off into space, reveiw goals. It always centers me for the day.

Some pretty amazing manifesting happened at 4 am. It was a really creative time. I can see the cause and effect looking back.
  • I really wanted to see my brothers together, in the same room. I actually crossed it off my wish list because it was truly in the "snowball in hell" category. But it happened.
  • I wished to make an addition to our family. After 5 years of "infertility" Kate happened.
And its strange because it doesn't seem like much and yet it can move mountains. You feel like you aren't doing anything but then you look back and see the path.

Taking time to get quiet and listen whether that means meditation or listing to music, taking a walk in nature or spacing out to a cup of coffee.

It's that time to plug into the infinite of it all.

Enjoy this capture of the full moon setting over the ocean down by the San Clemente Pier. It was taken on one of my "Manifesting Mornings."


Thursday, May 30, 2013

Allowing Life to Happen


Junior Olympics Qualifier tournament.

At my house, they play water polo. My son and middle daughter also swim competitively, but the sport that matters is water polo. I’m pretty sure that neither of my daughters could tell you who won the last Super Bowl, much less who played. Actually, I don’t know that my son could tell you… but that’s fine. He is an awesome water polo coach. Just ask any player on his 12 and Under Boys team.
This weekend is huge for us – it’s the Junior Olympics Qualifier tournament. The winners of this tournament will go to National Junior Olympics later this summer. Needless to say, everyone at my house is a little keyed up this week. Probably no one more so than I. They have invested months of practice time in preparation for this tournament. (Trust me, I know, because I drove them to all of those practices.) That investment of time and effort has yielded tremendous benefits for them – they are both outstanding water polo players. I know that they can hold their own against any team they meet this weekend. 
Junior Olympics Qualifier tournament.
Still, Orange County is the epicenter of water polo nationwide. This weekend, they will be facing some of the toughest competition the Junior Olympics has to offer. So there is a possibility that one or more of them won’t qualify for the national tournament. (Won’t that make for some awkward dinner conversations?)
This is one time that I wish I could chuck the concept of right action, and just cheer for them to win with every fiber of my being. Certainly, there is a lesson for them in losing, but couldn’t they learn it some other time?  After the hours of practice they’ve logged, the parties and outings they’ve missed, they would be so disappointed if they didn’t qualify for the National Junior Olympic tournament.
I would be so disappointed, too. I’ve had a front row seat on their journey. Sometimes I’ve been the passenger, sometimes I’ve been the driver, but always I’ve tried to support them. (Which is how I ended up as team mom. Talk about hours logged, Yay!)
Now, here we are, on the eve of JO Quals, as they are commonly known, and I am more on edge than the kids. Perhaps that’s because I have to sit back and watch it all play out. There is nothing I can do to influence the outcome – I can’t play for them. 
As parents, we all want the best for our children, and it can be difficult to watch them go out and risk disappointment. We have invested so much of ourselves in them and helping them achieve their goals. It can be hard to be relegated the role of observer.
The thing, of course, is to know that it is all right action. Life, unfolding exactly as it should.
As it always does.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Objects in mirror are closer than they appear


Objects in mirror are closer than they appear
Reflection of your Light

Sometimes it’s easier to see the Light shining brightly in others than ourselves.  We have to remember the Light is shining brightly within all of us in every moment.

Just like the mirror reflecting the sun's rays, it's so bright it's difficult to view.  Instead, we shield our eyes by using sunglasses to filter out the light. 

Sometimes, in our everyday existence we have heard words spoken to us or seen people act towards us in an unfavorable way.  Like sunglasses, these words or actions can acts as filters to lessen our knowingness of our Light.  What we have to remember is, even in those instances, our Light never is diminished.   The Light of God is nearer than may “appear” in those moments.  The Light of God is always in us and moving as us. So shine your Light brightly and you will reflect that same powerful Light right back at you.

If there is an instance where the God presence seems to be farther away, remember, It's nearer that it may appear.

Shine your unfiltered Light!
  

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Our Spiritual Leader Dr. Kenn Gordon


Metaphysical Legos 

A talk to remind us why we do this.
by Dr Ken Gordon, Spiritual Leader of the Centers For Spiritual Living.

and so it is
And So It Is!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Where is the Balance in Moving?!

Where is the Balance in Moving?!
Where is the Balance in Moving?!
The height of the boxes almost cover the windows. Newspapers swallow up the dinning room table. "Where is this, where is that?" The family yells. Every time I turn a corner dust bunnies the size of tennis balls are lying in wait to pounce on me.

This chaotic picture I'm painting is the preparation for moving house.

I come from a long line of women who are clean freaks. I kid you not, you could have a full meal at my grandmother's house and use the floor as your plate. In fact her floors are cleaner than your plates!

Every Saturday morning while growing up with my single mom it was a ritual to take the whole day and scrub the house from top to bottom. Because who knew if someone would just pop in unannounced. I equate it to having clean underwear on in case you get into a car accident. WHO CARES!!

As I grew older this obsession of cleanliness of theirs became absurd to me. Yet I was beginning to develop the same characteristics of this obsession.

As a newly wed I remember putting my poor new husband through the same Saturday ritual. When my children came along I couldn't function very well outside my home if I knew that I had left it dirty.

I always used to joke and secretly dread about us having to move one day. The pinnacle of messy and unorganized. Just thinking about it made my blood pressure rise.

Well here we are. Moving. All my worst fears have come true. Or so I thought. Having a few Science of Mind classes under my belt gave me some tools to cope.

Nowadays I'd rather spend the day at the beach with my kids than have a clean house. My life is temporarily in chaos and I know there will be an end. If someone happens to stop by unexpectedly and my house is a mess and they judge me for that, well, too bad for them. I'm still an ok person.

When I die I don't want to only be remembered for a clean house. There is no balance in moving. At all.

Life is messy. Don't be afraid of getting your hands dirty once in awhile. Go to the beach instead!

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path...


Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path...
Do not go where the path may lead,
go instead where there is no path...

Sunday is church day. I love church day, connecting with my spiritual community, spending time in prayer, meditation and spiritual growth with my peeps!  That's the way it has been for decades in my house.

Every once in a while, I find myself away from my spiritual center and look to connect with God in whatever town I find myself. Today was one of those days. Not finding a Center for  Spiritual Living in our area didn't stop my husband and I in finding a place to connect with the Infinite. We found ourselves in Snow Canyon State Park just outside St. George, Utah. 

As we embarked on what was expected to be an easy 4 mile hike I noticed all of the other hikers out finding their bliss in nature. We were following a general trail that seemed well established, but like life,  there were so many options to cut off the main path; we really had to pay attention. As you might guess, we did find ourselves on a completely different trail, at a completely different destination. And yet, what we were looking for: Peace, Nature, Beauty and God surrounded us. There were other nature enthusiasts out and about and we shared moments in passing - connecting on common ground. That experience that I love so much each Sunday at the Center for Spiritual Living Capistrano Valley I found in a different way, with a different group of spiritual seekers today in nature. 

Like the spiritual seekers that we are, my husband and I forged our own path several times today. We went off the beaten path, creating our own, and always, always we were aware of God. My Center in San Clemente is my spiritual home of choice where I connect, grow, teach, learn and engage in living my divine purpose; today I am reminded that God is everywhere, right where I am God is. And so it is. 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Love Letters from Heaven



Right now, do you feel loved? 

Do you feel confident and  secure knowing that you are enough?
I watched the following Ted Talk today; it touched me deeply. It stimulated an idea in me.

What I hear the speaker saying is that writing love letters to strangers transformed her life, moving her out of depression into transformation. It lifted her spirits and gave her a sense of connection and belonging. She wrote them and left them places. 

It reminds me about the joy of receiving a letter from a loved one; the importance of letting people know that they are loved. I believe that it is a universal longing to connect, to be cherished and loved. Of course, spiritually we are loved by the Divine Presence and for many of us we want more.

A spiritual practice is to write a letter to yourself from God. It might go something like this: 
"Beloved One,
You are my best creation. I am so proud of you. I cherish everything about you. I cherish your successes and I cherish your so-called failures. You reflect my light so beautifully. You express all my best qualities -- love, grace, beauty, joy, compassion, intelligence and creativity. I love your physical body but more than that I love your noble spirit. Your life is my life in expression. Truly I am with you always. Life is at your feet. Your embodied desire is my command. Joyously I obey because I adore you. Save time for me every day.
With great love,
God"



Doesn't it sound like fun?
Let's do an experiment. If you would like to play, write a hand-written love letter, and send it to the Center, to my attention. Then on June 23rd, when my theme for the day is "Happily Even After" we can distribute them to anyone who wants one. let's see how much love we can generate. I will keep you posted.

Write to me:
Heather Clark
C/o Center for Spiritual Living Capistrano Valley
1201 Puerta del Sol
San Clemente, CA  92673

Friday, May 24, 2013

A Tornado Victims Speaks Five Words that WILL Change the World

Photo courtesy of Anchorman Blog
Tragedy struck in Moore, Oklahoma on May 20, 2013.

Many families suffered great loss; from the loss of homes, personal belongings, to the unimaginable loss of life.

As I watched the news coverage the day following, I heard many victims say, "We lost everything," "I don't know what we'll do," or "I'm not sure where we go from here..."

But one comment hit me like a ton of bricks...the ONE comment that is not the normal outlook after a tragedy like this...the ONE comment that can change the lives of millions in our world...

One woman said it nonchalantly.  Without a morsel of emotion, with only the monotonous voice one in shock can use, yet, holding a conviction that will deliver to her, exactly what she wants.   She said,

"We get to start over."

"We GET to start over!"

When most are understandably thinking about the losses they experienced, this ONE woman, is looking forward to what she GETS to create.

In my own personal work, I coach clients to create days where they wake up and feel the excitement of the day in what they GET to do...not what they HAVE to do or SHOULD do...what they GET to do!

That's a feeling to adopt and create on any given day...a "normal" day.

For someone to adopt that mindset on what just may be the most tragic day of their life is something else.

What she GETS to do is start over, reinvent her life and create it exactly as she desires it.

Yes, from the physical things like rebuilding her home to exactly how she wants it, maybe sending her kids to a new, re-built, state-of-the-art school, maybe finally getting the car she's always wanted.

But also, she GETS to choose how she looks back at May 20, 2013.  She gets to choose to see it as a fresh start.  She gets to choose to move forward in her life with a grateful mindset of surviving, starting over and designing a life she loves.

My heart goes out to all of those suffering after a natural disaster like this.  But for those who are seeing the light in it, I send my greatest gratitude to them.  For their own insight empowers others in their "normal" lives to challenge themselves to see the light in everyday challenges.

If one person can take tragedy, see the light in it, and transform her life from it, she teaches others how to do the same; spreading the light to many others, maybe even millions of others, who choose to see the light instead of the darkness.

Power on, Oklahoma...see the light, create something spectacular and inspire the world!  You've got our prayers and our energy with you, as well as millions worldwide.  With that, anything is possible...anything!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Forgiveness: Finding Freedom from Past Hurts

Forgiveness is all about freedom from the binds of the past.
Forgiveness is all about freedom from the binds of the past.

I consider myself a rule follower and I try to live by the golden rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. But, I've noticed, we are all here, on this planet, together, doing the best we can do in the moment. Sometimes we make choices, conscious or unconscious, that hurt other people. Occasionally our own feelings get hurt. We feel slighted, judged, abandoned, shamed. 

What we do with these hurts, resentment and guilt, can offer us a prison of our own making or a life of freedom.

For Azim Khamisa the opportunity to hold onto resentment far exceeded what most of us have endured. In 1995, a gang member gunned down Azim's only son, Tariq, in San Diego while he was delivering a pizza. 

His son was an innocent, un-armed college kid. The murder was a random act of senseless violence perpetrated as part of a gang initiation. Instead of fighting for justice insisting an "eye for an eye," Azim found a path to forgiveness and compassion that he generously shares with others through his speaking engagements, workshops and books.  

This Memorial Day weekend, world-recognized speaker and humanitarian, Azim Khamisa offers us a path to freedom. He will be in San Clemente speaking during the Sunday service at 10:30 a.m. and teaching a mini forgiveness workshop from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Center. During the workshop Azim will teach and lead the group in releasing resentment and guilt, resulting in a more fulfilled life. Attendees will participate in guided meditations to facilitate real forgiveness at the "soulular" level, a term Azim created to explain the spiritual release of past hurts. Suggested cost for the workshop is a $20 donation.

The workshop sounded interesting but I wanted to know more. Recently I had the opportunity to interview Azim to explore what forgiveness healing is really all about.
            
Who could benefit from a workshop on forgiveness? Is it only for people who have experienced tragedy?

Holding on to hurt is typical and the things people keep locked inside can range from little slights to life-altering tragedies. Many of us live in resentment for what's happened or feel guilt for the things we have done. It's very common. We all have a story. We've all experienced conflict. It can be husband disappointed wife, father wronged son, daughter won't speak to mother, siblings don't get along, or ex-wife hurt her former husband. Forgiveness is about letting go of all of these hurts not just tragic events.

Why is forgiveness beneficial in leading more fulfilling lives?

People get stopped by resentment or hold onto guilt creating debilitating emotions that prevent many of us from living at our highest potential and giving the world 100 percent of our best selves. Sadly, forgiveness is not a well understood concept. In our society, we are conditioned to be judgmental. But, what I have come to know through experience is this: I have my journey and he has his.

My son's killer has his own journey. He has to live his life in prison knowing he killed a unarmed innocent person. And, I have my new path. Before my son was murdered I was an investment banker, but today my work is about saving children's lives and teaching about nonviolence. I had a very full life before my son was murdered and then I had no life. I realized that if I stayed in resentment who am I hurting...me. Unless I forgave, I would remain a victim and I didn't want to go through life on crutches. I'm no longer a victim. I leave all judgment to God.

What are the steps of forgiveness that workshop participants will experience?

I take workshop participants through three milestones for releasing resentment: expressing grief, letting go of resentment and reaching out to the offender.

It's important to grieve and we do not promote grief in our culture, which is unfortunate. Those who hide their grief do not find a remedy. In my workshop, I teach how to grieve. It's a painful process but very necessary and healing.

Next I use a guided meditation to promote the second step: letting go of resentment. Forgiveness requires developing a high level of empathy and setting a clear intention. The meditation helps workshop participants move through the hurt to compassion.

The final step is reaching out to the offender. Reaching out to the offender can be a tough last step, but  the first two steps makes it easier. Usually the resentment you are holding is against someone you used to love. It helps to remember that.

Khamisa will also take participants through steps to release guilt, the other side of the forgiveness equation.

Give yourself the gift of forgiveness and freedom this Memorial Day weekend and join us at the Center for this life affirming workshop.



Wednesday, May 22, 2013

For crying out loud.

In Robin Pajaro's recent blog post, Are you Somatized?, her last line states, "And have a good cry once in a while. It's free and very effective."

I will be the first one to freely admit I am a crier, many people know this about me. Being a highly sensitive individual (yes, I will use a label for reference),  whenever I have a strong emotion, I cry. I can be happy, sad, excited, frustrated, you name it, I will cry. I've actually come to embrace that part of me that uses tears as an outlet.  

Dr. William H. Frey II, a biochemist, and his team found that, "emotional tears contained protein-based hormones, all of which are produced by our body when under stress. The body is ridding itself of these chemicals through tears, which explains why we usually feel better after a good cry." 

Yes, crying is very effective in releasing any type of emotion, however, try not to rely on it as the only outlet.

 

CREATE



A creative outlet is not only beneficial to oneself, it could provide a space of love for others to enjoy. Since invited to join this wonderful, Spiritual, community of bloggers, this outlet has been a complete blessing. I can really say what I need to say.

I invite each and every one of the members in our Spiritual community to express themselves through a creative medium. Whether it is art, poetry, written word or music, the expression of creativity allows all to just "say what you need to say."

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

What Are The Centers For Spiritual Living All About from @DrJWaterhouse



 Q) What are the Centers of Spiritual Living all about?

 A) We are a spiritual community that recognizes and celebrates the Infinite Presence of God. We don't seek to know a God outside of ourselves; instead we know God within us. We believe that the highest God and the innermost God is one God.



Please enjoy the rest of Sundays elevator talk about who we are and what we do at the Centers for Spiritual Living by by @DrJWaterhouse

Click here for "Five Steps to Freedom: An Introduction to Spiritual Mind Treatment"

Monday, May 20, 2013

Are You Somatized?

Are You Somatized?
Are You Somatized?

This is the direct definition of Somatized in my hypnotherapy school: Too much stress in the brain that can't be vented out so it goes somewhere in the body to be vented  out later. Or it can manifest later as symptoms.

Have you ever been going along quite nicely with your life, or so you thought, then all of a sudden you start to have chronic back, neck or shoulder pain?  Or any unexplained pain without an event? After awhile you visit your doctor and after a battery of tests they find nothing wrong with you?

You see all the symptoms in the body are felt or seen as images and expressed as words. Sometimes the body is expressing a symptom that is stress. Or your body has certain needs that must be met like adequate rest, proper nutrition or just the opportunity to have the time to process and vent stress.

Your subconscious mind knows exactly what your body needs. The problem is your conscious mind doesn't want to give it. The conscious mind has 12% consciousness, it has logic, reason, willpower, a voice, decision making, and superior judgement. All of this in our beautiful frontal lobes.

Are you with me so far? Here's where it gets tricky. The subconscious mind has the maturity of a nine year old. So like a hysterical nine year old not getting its way its going to retaliate and cause symptoms of pain in strategic areas of the body until it gets its way. This could go on for years. Often leading to depression and withdrawal from society in extrem cases. All the conscious mind needs to do is give permission to the subconscious mind so all the body's needs are being met.

In Science of Mind we know that the mind, body and spirit are all connected. We don't need to experience all these body syndroms as we call them in hypnotherapy.

Ways to make this happen are meditation, proper rest so your mind can vent out negatives in the third stage of sleep, paying close attention to your thoughts and stress reduction. And of course go and see your friendly Hypnotherapist!

Bottom line is be aware of Somatizing yourself. And have a good cry once in awhile. It's free and very effective.




Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Fresh New Start


A Fresh New Start
A Fresh New Start
Just this Monday, I decided to embark on a new journey. This began a new process, a new start that was inspired by the novel Eat, Pray, Love. by Elizabeth Gilbert. I had the sudden desire to enlighten myself and become closer and more aware of my godself. So, to do so I did three things.

These three processes include one of which is a bit of a challenge to me, but shows myself that I am completely devoted to changing my own life. And, that is meditation. After school, I always feel so worn out and drained, or as if I'd just carried a large boulder on my head, so the afternoon wasn't the perfect time of day. Instead of meditating when I returned home, I finally decided to put that absurd thought aside, accepting that as my relaxing time, and do my meditation and begin my spiritual practices in the morning, making a more efficient, more positive, new beginning to each day.

As well as meditating for twenty to thirty minutes each day, I have begun to journal once more, spilling out all of my dreams, goals, anything I need to drop onto paper in order to feel lighter, happier, more aware of my surroundings. This has created a much more exciting feel to my everyday life, in embellishing my goals and flaunting them with care and acceptance. And, as well as lifting heavy thoughts and affirming truths, journaling has become an excellent practice of my own art.

The third spiritual practice I have begun to engulf myself in is Class. Yes, I have started to take Pattie Mercado's Exploring Roots of Science of Mind classes, and although it has not even been one week since the class premiered, I feel stronger in my spiritual, as well as academic development. This class has already allowed me to expand in my own roots, as a teen, by gaining more knowledge about this beautiful teaching, and all at the same time, starting connections within the congregation. This opportunity is a fabulous one, and I am glad to be indulging myself in these wonderful, new ways of spiritual growth.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Letting Go With Balance Meditation

The Joy of Meditation
I marked the chapter "Letting Go With Balance"
in my new book "The Joy of Meditation."
"The Joy of Meditation" by Jack & Cornelia Addington finally arrived. I have wanted to read this book ever since I spotted it on the "Meditation is More Than You Think" course syllabus.

Just as I suspected, the book did not disappoint and I read it all the way through in a day by slipping it into my purse and using every spare opportunity to read it. It was an exciting read for me as I 'heard' new information concerning meditation.

New Meditation Take Aways

Meditation is not a time to ponder your problems but a time to connect to source.

Meditation is a letting go, a listening for what is already there.

Answers deriving from meditation do not necessarily arrive during meditation.


Letting Go With Balance

There is one meditation that holds big promises. "This is a meditation that is apt to mark a turning point in your life. It could provide you with a dramatic spiritual experience everything you use it." I would recommend you read this chapter (and the book for that matter) in its entirety but here is a synopsis so you can get the general idea.

Part 1 - The Release

"I am letting go with balance."

"So, with a feeling of perfect balance, trusting in the Power within, we are going to let go of every problem. And now, we individualize our meditation by taking our worriesome thoughts, our uneasy feelings, our fears and misgiving, and letting them go with balance."

The inner dialogue would list everything, punctuating each item with "letting go with balance" until you have exhausted the list.

Part 2 - The Accepting

The mantra is "God is able." Repeating the prior list, but by prefacing the statement with "God is able ..."

And another "aha moment" for me came when I read this passage:

"You do not have to relate the God is able to your outer affairs. The quotation is to be used as a mantra until you feel the Power stirring within you." I think in prior meditations, especially guided meditations, I have felt the need to imagine solutions on the spot or to search for something specific instead of allowing the experience to unfold.

I highly recommend this book to anyone curious about meditation.

"The Joy of Meditation" is available at Amazon.com. If you use the following link a portion of the purchase goes to the Center for Spiritual Living Capistrano Valley at no cost to you.



Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Poised Perspective

The Poised Perspective


In my busy family life, often times balance seems like a myth or a fairy tale. As I race from one school to the next or try to listen to three children talking at once ALL wanting to be heard over the other, I feel like the woman in the old Calgon commercial voicing..."Calgon...take me away." In that moment, I want to escape my life for a little peace and quiet. I tell myself, I really need to find some balance, like that would solve all my problems.

In the Science of Mind text book, Ernest Holmes doesn't even have a definition for balance. Instead, he defines poise. Poise is a synonym for balance but for me conjures up a very different picture in my mind. Say the word balance and I picture a tightrope walker, tense and focused, making each step count so as not to fall. Or I envision a scale, adding and taking away activities to create an even spread of my time and attention. On the other hand, when I think of poise, I think of a way of being or a graceful person, calm and centered, moving with ease.

I've thought a lot about balance this month and I have discovered that the internal sense of poise is really where I want to put my attention. What I know is that creating my life is an inside job. How I feel and think creates my perceptions. My perceptions in turn create my reality.

With a new awareness of poise, I find myself praying more and not one of those throw-your-hands-in-the-air "So help me God!" kind of prayers. But rather an affirmative prayer that starts with a deep breath and recognizes right where I am is all good and all God. I've also found the perspective to be grateful for the fiery daughter who knows her own mind or the bountiful life that affords us all of our activities and the car that gets us there and back. I have also been more mindful of my choices, knowing that I am the creator of my experience.

Being poised is a practice, a daily opportunity. I invite you to consider poise and see if it offers you a new perspective on life.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Can you spare a little change?


Working from the core to balance change
Working from the core to balance change 

The theme of the month at the Center for Spiritual Living, Capistrano Valley is Balance: Working from the core.  In deep, Spiritual unfoldment, we may work to keep our bearings straight, to recalibrate & to get to a place of balance. 

What I find interesting is how some of us make a choice to embark on a Spiritual journey and sometimes don't look back to reflect on what we have accomplished.  Some of us start on this journey with a deep sense of regret, a distrust of belief or a skepticism that is accompanied with a chip on our shoulder.  We have a sense of, "I'll believe it when I see it" mentality.  And then, we start to lighten our load, we start to see things in a different manner.  We start to even out the scale by dumping some of our old beliefs & thoughts. When we come to this part of our journey, it is good to look back at where we began.

I remember a time where de-cluttering was necessary, I happened upon some old journals and old recommended reading books.  What I noticed in my journal was interesting.  I read passages in the journal that I didn't recognize.  I really didn't remember writing the words on the page.  What was really interesting about the words were that they were very profound.  I was surprised on the depth that was contained in the pages.  What I realized is that, even if you are sometimes wearing a mask, Truth is still lighting your Soul. Circumstances may have led to me to a place when I piled heart-hardening layers on top, but deep-down, the knowing and trusting of Truth was still inside.  So I honored the me that was on the journey at that space in time.  I recognized the work that was necessary to bring to a place of balance in Mind, Body and Spirit.

In regards to the old recommended reading books, another interesting discovery.  I noticed sentences highlighted on many of the pages.  I read those passages and couldn't figure out why I found that particular sentence of importance.  In fact, I found other non-highlighted sentences even more worthy of my attention.  Again, on my journey at that time, this was most important during my Spiritual growth and now it's changed.  To this day, I've given up highlighting books.

So in our time of Spiritual growth, remember each step is a little change.  When you take the move to the next stepping stone a recalibration to balance occurs.  Once steady you can move on to the next stepping stone.  This continues over the course of growth until one day you look back and don't even recognize the image of the person on the first stone.  This person that was so certain to be right in their thinking has shifted.  Honor the person who you were at that time and the one who has evolved to this time.  Allow yourself to move at the pace that was meant for you.  Remember not to criticize your own growth, just spare yourself a little change.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Spiritual Laws Ralph Waldo Emerson



Ralph Waldo Emerson - Spiritual Laws


The living Heaven thy prayers respect,
House at once and architect,
Quarrying man's rejected hours,
Builds therewith eternal towers;
Sole and self-commanded works,
Fears not undermining days,
Grows by decays,
And, by the famous might that lurks
In reaction and recoil,
Makes flame to freeze, and ice to boil;
Forging, through swart arms of Offence,
The silver seat of Innocence..
A man is what he thinks about all day long. Ralph Waldo Emerson
And So It Is!

Monday, May 13, 2013

Grateful For Mothers




Yesterday was Mothers Day. Having a preteen and teen daughters, I really didn't expect much. I know that sounds terrible but if you live with teens you know exactly what I mean.

I'm happy to report I was wrong. It wasn't that my family had all this extravagant fanfare planned. On the contrary. They packed a lunch and took me to the beach. I got to spend the whole day at the beach and my girls weren't even embarrassed to be seen with me! It's amazing how I've come full circle with all these expectations from Mothers Day past. Now I totally appreciate just quality time with them. It's like finding gold it's so rare. Yes we spend time together because we live together but on Mothers Day they consciously wanted to be with me and make me happy. AHHH, I'm still basking in the joy of it all.

I also recognize that mothers aren't always biological. Many years ago when my mother exited my life I spent a few years asking the Universe for a mother. I wanted one whom would love me unconditionally, be my best friend and shopping companion, just basically be there for me. Did such a mother exist? It seems most of my friends had that. Mind you, this was before I studied Science Of Mind. On some level I guess I didn't deserve it. But that didn't stop me from asking.

Then one day I had one of those Light Bulb moments. That beautiful mother I was longing for had been right under my nose the whole time! She is my aunt Tanya. We've always been close but some magnetic force drew us together on a deeper level. My new realization hit me like a ton of bricks. She  is everything a mom should be plus more.

I want to take this opportunity to express my deepest gratitude to God for proving that we are all worthy and entitled to all the Abundant Gifts the Universe has to offer. I found my mom, and she couldn't be a better grandmother and my uncle too. For my beautiful girls God has entrusted me to raise. And of course my wonderful husband who is always there for me.

I live a rich and beautiful life and I am one lucky Mother!!


Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day!

Just the words bring up so many feelings. Ones of love, appreciation, wonder and joy.  As I appreciate my mom today I find myself reflecting back on all of the great advice that she has given me over the years. Probably, the best was "Always be yourself". If there was nothing else she said about a situation or a question it was that. I did not always feel that it was enough but I did over time learn to trust those words and to discover what it meant to be myself. 

Today there will be many celebrations and tender moments of thinking about mom. There will be disappointment and hurt for mom's who are not with us. We will think of Mother Earth, Giving birth to a new idea and the mother figures who have influenced us.  How I think about and talk about my mom has changed over the years as I have grown and become a mother myself. I find myself knowing myself in a greater way because of her wise words. I find myself appreciating the power of her influence on my life. And, as special as I think my mom is I realize that there are many more who have a mom that has made a difference in their life. 

Mom's are one of the most written and talked about. Here is what a few have had to say about mothers:

Motherhood: All love begins and ends there.
Robert Browning 

God could not be everywhere, and therefore he made mothers.
Rudyard Kipling 

All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.
Abraham Lincoln 

A mother's happiness is like a beacon, lighting up the future but reflected also on the past in the guise of fond memories.
Honore de Balzac 

Sometimes the strength of motherhood is greater than natural laws.
Barbara Kingsolver 

My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her.
George Washington

What would I say about my mom? I would say: Thank you mom, for teaching me to "just be myself". I love you mom!

What will you say today to your mom or in memory of your mom?



Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Identity Prayer by Dr. John Waterhouse

The Identity Prayer by Dr. John Waterhouse
The Identity Prayer
When I had the opportunity to speak at Center for Spiritual Living Capistrano Valley several weeks ago, I invited everyone to recite a short prayer with me, which I call The Identity Prayer.  Our community in Asheville, North Carolina recites this simple prayer every Sunday morning during our Celebration of Life.  To me it perfectly expresses our Divine Nature from a Science of Mind perspective.

I know there are some who think that reciting a prayer has little more than ritualistic value, but this has not been my experience. By reciting this prayer every Sunday, members of our community are being deeply affected.  Many no longer read the words, but instead close their eyes and go to that place at the center of their being, not only to speak words, but to embrace their deepest meaning as absolute Truth. There is always a sense of peace and sacredness as they are simultaneously spoken and heard by everyone.

We hold this prayer as our standard for how we seek to be in the world. See what you think…


“I know that within myself there is that Life which is Perfect, Complete, Divine. It was never born and cannot die for it lives and is God. Within myself is the Wholeness, Peace, Poise and Power of Life. This Life is Health, It is Abundance, It is Love. There is One Life and it is the Life of God and This is my Life now!”                                             And So It Is!


I believe that anyone who allows these ideas to flow from their lips and into their heart is blessed with a greater sense of spiritual self-awareness.  I’m going to invite everyone who joins me at Center for Spiritual Living Capistrano Valley on Sunday, May 19th to say this prayer with me again.

If you start saying this prayer daily between now and then, we could proclaim this Truth together from the depths of our hearts on that Sunday morning.  Now that would be a divine expression of great proportion!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Finding A Mother's Day Gift In San Clemente

Marigolds in a milk carton, one of the first gifts I remember giving to my Mom on Mothers Day.
Oh the elusive Mother's Day gift. I actually feel like a much better gift giver after Rev. Dr. Heather's talk last Sunday.

As preschoolers and elementary students we are guided through these Mother's Day projects. We are filled with excitement and the joy of giving. We know our Moms will love what we have to give them.

As we get older, at least in my experience, those gifts become harder to find. It feels more challenging to find something, especially before you have your own income, your own way to get to the store. You learn that grown ups generally have the means to buy what they really want.

We know the language of love includes gifts. But what do we have to give?

Last Sunday I was reminded of just how much there is to give.

There are always gifts to be given.
They don't need money and they don't require transportation to get you to the store. They won't clutter up your house with dust collecting chachkies.

It's not the gift. It's the thought behind it.
I know this is true. I have come to believe the best gifts come from LISTENING. What do we listen for? Rev. Dr. Heather articulated both the question and the answer for me last Sunday.

How do the people in your life want to be loved?
  • gifts
  • quality time
  • touch
  • service
  • words of affection
  • affirmation & praise
I do believe these gifts would be on the list of any Mom.

Mom, I just want to thank you.



A Rock Tower Crumbles and Teaches a Major Life Lesson on Balance

I sat on the beach basking in the warm, spring sun.

My five year old collected rocks.

Beautiful rocks.  Black ones. Flat ones. Round ones.

They caught my attention and I decided to stack them like the cool rock towers I see when I Google images of "rock towers."

The first few minutes of stacking them became harder than I thought.  I'd get four or five stacked and they would tumble.  I'd start again, and then... ...the tumble.

It took me much longer than I expected to get 7 stacked, but I was proud of the work I had put into it.  As I laid down in front of my rock tower to take a picture with the ocean behind it, my five year old threw a big rock and tumbled the whole tower.

I gave him an exasperated, "Duuuuuuude!!!"

He sat down to cry knowing how hard I had worked.

After we made up and I assured him I wasn't mad, I started the stacking again.

It took me even longer to re-stack the 7 rocks, but I finally succeed and snapped the picture above.

Then it dawned on me...

This month's topic at CSLCV is "Balance!"...what can I learn from the rock tower?

Here's what came to me:

It took me time to find the balance of the rocks that allowed them to be solid enough to create the foundation for the next rock.

The tower tumbled at one point.

I re-stacked it to create the balance again and it took awareness to DECIDE to do it again.

I became aware that, in order to create something as beautiful as I had done, I'd have to start all over. 

I became aware of how each rock precisely balanced just the right way on top of the other.

I realized that finding balance in our own lives takes awareness.

It takes awareness of knowing when we are out of balance, and tapping back into the tools we have to get ourselves back into balance.

These tools being meditation, journaling, soul rejuvenation hours (one hour a day taken only for us!), reading a good book.  These are tools that have transformed my life and have given me more balance in it.  

Finding balance takes concentration and awareness.  

Yes, balance in life is possible, but it starts with a decision.

Decide today to be balanced.  Take the intricate steps necessary to create it.  Be aware when it "tumbles" and "stack" your tools until you find balance again.  


Thursday, May 9, 2013

Balance, Balance, Balance!


 

As a parent it is easy to find life being all about the kids. When our two children were young preschoolers their father and I would strive to balance our lives around  the very important issues of sleep, play dates, parenting classes, parenting books, the parents of our kids friends, and oh, ya work! My husband and I saw each other over dinner that was consumed by baby talk, snatched moments of intimacy and looking over the heads of our sweet children who consumed our lives and the thoughts we were thinking. To save ourselves from becoming baby-maniacs we balanced our lives with becoming involved in our spiritual center. The same one we attend today, our center was a refuge for me as a young stay at home mother.

When the kids were school age, family vacations were at kid friendly places, our friends were the parents of our kids friends, our activities were the activities of our children so we were Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts and students again.  We watched "G" rated movies and spoke of the tooth fairy, how to be a friend, and who got to stay home alone while the other parent took the kids to their activities. My husband and I discovered date night and the power of a weekend away and even vacationed without the children thanks to our family and the circle of friends established in those early preschool years. Our thoughts were still consumed by our children in these years and we were well equipped with the spiritual tools that we learned at our Center to balance parenthood with our marriage. Kids and work, life and living was all the creative expression of our lives. Somehow we were able in those years to deepen our connection within our spiritual center as volunteers, and leaders. Our circle of friends were our kids friends parents and our classmates from church. We learned, along with our children, about the value and importance of our "church family". 

I look back on the teenage years with fondness - mostly because they are over! We all survived the inevitable rolling of the eyes (mine as much as theirs) demands on our time from overburdened school activities, the crazy taxi driver life, and the extreme sport of pulling away while clinging to life as it has always been.  My husband and I were involved in every aspect of our children's lives and they in ours. Balance was a matter of fitting more onto the plate of activities because surely there was room for more good in my life. I was definitely more adept at this than my husband who has always had an easier time saying no than me! During the teen age years my husband and I became licensed Practitioners here at our spiritual center. We were trained in the art and science of prayer. What a blessing to our family and ourSelves!!  The process required us to be in class one night a week for several years. Because we went through the classes together we experienced our growth together.  During the teen age years we all grew! We had a village of support that included our extended families on both sides and our church family. 

Now as parents of young adults my husband and I are still involved here at our beloved home away from home our spiritual center. We have friends here at church and in our neighborhood, from my husbands work and friends of friends. We have kept in touch with some of the parents of our children's  friends but mostly we have our own now.  Our children are our friends and we have a life outside of parenting that I never could have imagined. 

Tomorrow my husband and I celebrate our 27th wedding anniversary and when I think about how we did it I know it is balance! We consciously and sometimes unconsciously balance our lives to include God, our dreams, our passion and each other. Oh, yeah, and our kids are part of that balance too! The theme throughout our 27 years has been our spiritual community. Here we have grown in love and in age. Here, we have come to know ourselves. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Stop "shoulding" all over yourself



Learning to honor where you are in your spiritual development is an important part of the process.  Do you find a way to add extra pressure unto yourself for not being at the place of enlightenment as you “should” be?

Many make plans at an early age for their lives only to change these plans, several times over, during the course of life.  Sometimes they reflect back and question how they got to this place.  Sometimes they have a belief that they should be doing this, making this amount of money, living here, etc. When these plans do not come to fruition, some can have a sense of guilt, anxiety or fear. Releasing themselves of that limited perspective is spiritual growth.

Stop “shoulding” all over yourself, is a phrase learned while developing my spiritual muscle at Agape International Spiritual Center in Culver City.  Agape is my heart however, as I know Spirit, my heart was open to more.

The decision to remain in Orange County, CA while building a family always seemed a natural choice.  Thoughts & discussions of living in Los Angeles, near Agape, were topics with my husband & me.  Instead of moving closer to Culver City, our lives continued to move further south in Orange County.  Choosing a spiritual center for my children near home was important. Visiting the Center for Spiritual Living, Capistrano Valley in San Juan Capistrano for the first time was an investigative quest.  Meeting Reverend Pattie Mercado and Juli Isola’s children on that day reeked of Love.  The decision to attend with my children was already made in Spirit prior to me attending.

Now, as the center has moved to San Clemente, the path of my spiritual development is also on the move, thanks to this Spiritual center.   When I ask myself, “How did I get here?” it is with a smile, knowing that Divine Right Order is in place. The space in Consciousness was set for me long before I was given the directions how to get here.  I wonder what would have happened if I had done what I “should” have.

Ladera Ranch to San Clemente by way of Culver City

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

As a Man Thinketh James Allen


You are today where your thoughts have brought you; 
you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you.
James Allen


As a Man Thinketh James Allen
And So It Is! 

Monday, May 6, 2013

The Teeter Totter of Life

The Teeter Totter of Life

This month's theme of Balance at our center came at a perfect time in our families' life.
We are in the process of moving and looking for a new place to live, staying in the same town.

Our two girls are old enough to have a say, or an opinion at least. Which makes things even more difficult. One night after dinner we practiced Science of Mind by putting in our "order" to the Universe. On a piece of paper we wrote down specifically what we wanted our new house to look like and how it would fulfill our needs. We left one thing out. Location.

That's when you-know-what hit the fan. My husband and I figured we would make our search wide and look all over town. House hunting can be so depressing. Sometimes I really don't want to know how my fellow man or woman lives. As our search continued I noticed that old familiar voice inside my head trying to convince me that this ordering from the Universe is pie in the sky. I had to do a quick check in with my dear friends Reverend Pattie and Juli.

Back on track. Except that the 15-year-old wants an old funky beach cottage so she can walk to the beach and surf everyday. No matter that the 1960's kitchen oven was the size of my kids' Easy Bake Oven when they were little.

The 12-year-old wants to be in Rancho SC so she can be close to her friends and school.

It got to a point where one or the other kid wouldn't look at a house based on its location.

My husband is easy and tends to lean to wherever everybody is happy.

So here I am not even thinking of my needs and trying so hard to do the impossible by trying to please everyone else.

I did Affirmative Prayer everyday. And kept the faith. But I still felt very unbalanced. My teeter totter of emotions wouldn't stop. The message Dr Heather gave today reminded me to Bend At My Knees and once I'm physically balanced then I may attain Spiritual Balance.

I'm happy to report that we did find our perfect family home. It may not be in the location that one of the girls wanted but ultimately everyone is happy. You know what? The location and everything about the house suits mine and my husbands needs perfectly so at the end of the day I also learned to Balance and Center myself and remember that my needs are important too. Because you know how the old saying goes, "If mom is happy then everyone is happy!"

How is the Balance in your life? Are you remembering to Bend at the Knees?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Youth Is Not Wasted On The Young


How often do you get a chance to experience what it's like to be a teenager again?  I was so blessed to have that opportunity.  Today, I attended "A Day At Camp," which was facilitated by the In-Flight Teens at the Center for Spiritual Living Capistrano Valley, and it was amazing!

Having three children who have had the experience of attending Summer Camps and Winter Camps and never having experienced it myself always left me a bit curious. My kids have always come home from camp with so much love, excitement, and connection in their hearts.  There is such a "buzz" that they feel and share with us as they recall the events of the past week. Not only have they made life-long connections with others, I have seen each of them grow into beautiful and confident people. I think the most common thing they verbalize from the experience is the feeling of total acceptance. While at camp, they don't feel judged or put down, only raised up. I often hear from many of the teens, "I wish I could live at camp." 

As a gift to the parents and our spiritual family, the inspired teens from the Center for Spiritual Living Capistrano Valley created a day that gave us a small taste of what they do while they are at camp.  I feel very confident in stating that all of the adults who attended were quite moved, amazed and simply impressed with the depth, sharing and fun that was experienced.  We not only learned about Love Lingual (the different ways we express our love toward others), we also got to strut our stuff out on the catwalk whilst being barraged with words of praise, and got washed with love during a completion workshop, the Angel Wash.  Now I know why they are walking on air upon their return home.

What a gift today was!  I feel so blessed to have had this wonderful experience and incredibly grateful that my children have the camp experiences and the Science of Mind philosophy to take with them the rest of their lives.  May they always realize how amazing they are, just the way they are. 

Something wonderful is happening as me today!
And So It Is! 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Do You Have the Power to Stop God?


Have you ever denied your identity? When I watch one of my favorite musicals, Les Miserables, I am always moved by the goodness of the protagonist, Jean Val Jean. He was a man who was cruelly and brutally incarcerated for stealing a loaf of bread. Released from prison after nineteen years of unjust punishment, he was bitter and angry. He was shunned by everyone he met except for a kindly man of God.

 "Bishop Welcome" as he was known by the people in his area, not only treated Jean Val Jean with kindness,giving him food, clothing and a place to sleep. The Bishop told him he was in God's house and was welcome, treating the former prisoner with respect and brotherly love. Val Jean still hardened from his treatment in jail, stole several expensive pieces of silver from the Bishop. When the gendarmes caught him and took him back to the Bishop, the Bishop told them that the pieces were a gift from him and insisted that he take even more.

 This generous action transformed Jean Val Jean. He made a new life for himself. He was a just and fair man who was still being hunted by Inspector Javert for changing his identity. The clip shows Jean Val Jean's inner struggle when another man was mistaken for Val Jean. He comes to the conclusion, that he must do the right thing, even if it means going back to prison. 

One of the greatest pieces of advice ever given, is found is the play Hamlet, when Polonius is talking to his young son.He advises, "To thine own self be true." What great advice especially if we know who we really are. 

Many years ago, when I was starting out on my spiritual path, I attended a spiritual personal development course, called On Course. During the course, the facilitators, Michael and Paulette Sun, helped people realize their inherent goodness, their infinite possibilities, their God nature. Filled with compassion, I was flooded with tears with each person's awakening. 

Then Michael came to me and asked quietly, "You really see the goodness, truth and beauty in all of these people don't you Heather?" I nodded. 

He went on, "You see that each one is a powerful God being filled with God qualities.?"Again I agreed. 

Then he said, "But you don't really feel that you are worthy, lovable and capable, do you?" I agreed again. 

Then he said, "Do you know how arrogant that is?" I was dumfounded! Tender-hearted me, being accused of being arrogant!I looked at him speechlessly. I had no idea what he meant. 

He went on, "You believe that you are the one human being, on the entire planet, who is separate from God! You are strong enough to stop the Creator of the Universe from doing what It does! You stop it from being God in you!" 

 Something in me, heard him with new ears. I got it. My shoulders dropped. I felt filled with Peace. I was transformed. His honesty and perception gave me a gift greater than silver candlesticks; he gave me  a glimpse at my true identity.

Who am I? I am Heather Dawn Clark, made in the image of Truth, Beauty and Good. Who do you think you are?

Namaste
Namaste