Day 15 of Self Love-Challenge

When positive or joyous feelings and attitudes pass through each organ and circulate throughout our whole system, our physical and chemical energies are transformed and balanced.”

Tarthang TulkuImageAbove you see a Medicine Buddha Thanka.  A dear Tibetan friend brought it to me when he visited.  His father was a famous Thanka painter in Ladakh, and passed away while my friend was here. I am so blessed to have such a powerful gift and spirit in my meditation room.  In Buddhism, we are taught that everything has the power to heal and cure.  That means, anything we encounter in life.  The people, their actions, words, situations, everything.  That means the painful situations too.  They serve as beneficial medicine.

This is an important concept because it means that so often our well being is in our own hands.  The world and everything in it can be used to heal our heart and restore our health.  Words, relationships, medicines, diet, friends, massage, nature, crystals, prayer, animals…..The list is endless.

The Medicine Buddha is my personal spirit guide.  I require healing and I also had spent many years as a nurse, healing others.  Many mornings I sit in front of him and intellectually know, healing comes from the mind and yet, despite much practice, my heart still hurts.  It’s a lifelong practice, this healing.

I look at him, perfect in balance.  His internal and external harmony exists.  He sits in Lotus position and in a form such as Shakyamuni did.  Brilliant in sapphire blue he sits with his right hand holding a healing plant called myrobalan.  Sometimes. it’s as if he is actually handing it to me.  His fingers touch the earth, a place where I also find comfort.   His left hand is in mudra and holds a monk’s begging bowl that is filled with healing elixir called “the nectar of deathlessness.”

And yet, my heart still hurts.  My body is still in pain and ill.  I will continue for as long as it takes.  I want to be cleansed of the toxins from my past and present.  I want to be rid of the negativities,, the fears, illusions and karmic imprints.  The energy flows between us and amongst us all.  After all. thats all we are is energy.  We are all connected and are of one.  All of us.

It has been a difficult week and I feel like I’ve been punched in the gut by another mode of rejection.  Silly perhaps, but the energy swirls around me as I fend it off with my spiritual practice, understanding and forgiveness in my heart.  It doesn’t have to be this difficult when we all want the same things.  To be loved.  To be heard.  To be happy and wanted.  It really doesn’t have to be so hard..but it is.

Today’s practice and solitude are gifts to my body.  It can’t take any more battles and beatings from outside energies.  For too long, I pushed it and pushed it, demanding it perform under almost inhumane circumstances of the  chaotic energy of adoption and reunion, never mind the actual physical demands.  It tried to tell me, to show me, to make me pay attention but I, being the good little adoptee just kept going.  Now, even with the help of Medicine Buddha and  a healing package from Ayu Lhamo a Shaman in Ladakh my body weakens and screams in pain.

My mind, is learning to let go, despite not understanding, but knowing the realities of what is..With this comes healing.

When you try to become mindful of your your thoughts it covers almost everything.  The entirety of consciousness, all of our moods and emotional reactions.  It’s becoming aware of how we alone conceptually construct our world and it’s reality.  In this way, we can let go of who we used to be and be renewed.  It helps me deal with my sadness and also how I experience joy.  Acceptance and equanimity..that’s the ultimate goal.

Once we are no longer tied to who we used to be and how we think things should be….based on the past…We become free to be authentically who we are.

Center yourself in the moment and relax.

Let go of your thoughts.

Just let them come and go and settle down.

Breathe in through your nostrils.

Relax and breathe out, saying Ahhhh

Hold out your breath for a moment of emptiness .

Stay centred, and allow yourself a moment of being, just being….

So simple, so free and easy…..

Today, I will remember to accept myself as the person I am now, not the person I used to be.  I will re-energize and allow my body to feel the change and rest.  I will smile knowing I am on the right path.  I will just be….

Day 10-11 of Self-Love Challenge

 “Why have you valued yourself in pennies when you are worth a king’s         ransom?  Why did you listen to those who demeaned  you…..and far worse, why did you believe them?”

   -OG MANDINO

Today I acknowledge my worth despite the flaws I have and broken parts yet to be fixed.

Another label….broken.

 Were you labeled at some point in your life as “broken”.  I was.  From birth I was broken,  The words are painful to speak but they infiltrated my brain at a very early age and although I tried so hard to “fix” the broken part since I really didn’t know what it was the task was impossible.

Many of us were labeled broken,  The adoptees, the abused, the fosters, the discards.  They would have kept us if we weren’t broken..right?  Wrong!

Leonard Cohen sings so brilliantly about being broken, being “cracked” and that’s where the light gets in.  I so believe that.  I now love my cracks and am on my way to filling with light.

A few years ago I was in a store and saw a Buddha on a sales table with the label “broken”.  I picked him up and inspected him from head to toe and saw nothing.  I thought perhaps there had been a mistake made and asked the sales clerk.  “Oh no!” She said.  “See that little crack right there, that makes him broken and nobody will buy him with a crack”.  He came home with me that day.  He was no more broken than I.

It’s the labels that confine us.  The labels from life, from parents, from school, from society.  People are so willing to throw out labels, as if it is safer to put us in little boxes and the world will run better because we are neatly stacked in boxes with labels.

My labels came with a price tag.  My worth was calculated by how perfect i could look, behave, perform.  It all had to be perfect or my worth was nothing.  I wasn’t good enough.  Those labels rock a child’s self esteem and set them up for a lifetime of angst.  Those labels can be a heavy burden to carry into adulthood and taint everything in our world.

Often, especially with adopted children. When we reach puberty and begin to display traits that don’t “fit” the perfect mould that was expected and demanded, the trouble begins.  In reality, there is nothing wrong with us.  We are just being who we really are in genetics.  

For all people that don’t fit the mould…there is nothing wrong with you…NOTHING. 

Og Mandino wrote in The Greatest Miracle in the World.  “Never, until the end of time, will there be another such as you.”  Appreciate your uniqueness, your flaws, your cracks ,for they are yours alone.  

Understanding your uniqueness is what esteeming the Self is all about.  It’s realizing that you have been good enough, smart enough, worthy enough all along.

Buddha said “Everything we are is the result of what we have thought”

Today, I believe in my worth.  I am filled with the light that gets in through all of my “cracks”.  I am not broken and neither are you.  You are worthy and beautiful, flaws and all.  Start saying that and thinking and soon you will believe.

   Image