I love during this time to reflect on all that I have in my life. It’s a wonderful time of the year with holiday cheer, family traditions and a season of joy all around. It sparks this sense of wonder at the world around me. I’m reminded of those earlier years when we were bright eyed and bushy tailed with the excitement of presents and gatherings. Reflecting on those memories by looking at one of the steps of setting intention: (this article was first written for FIND BLISS magazine April 2013 by Ashley Walsh)
Receive the Wonder. This statement reads so simply, yet the complexity of the concept has been deliber ated by the likes of Plato and Buddhist monks. As daunted as those who took on this subject before myself, I decided to go out in search of the wonder. In this process, I found a self-portrait that I drew at age five: an inked outline of a woman (apparently I was well-developed in my mind) with the words “I love ME!” written boldly next to it. There it was, in its simplicity of youth, the truest expression of what it means to Receive the Wonder, which is: To Love Yourself.
Multiple disciplines and philosophies hold the fundamental belief that our internal world is reflected in the external world; a dynamic play of energy is constantly in action. As Subhash Kak, PhD, states in Quantum Mechanics of Consciousness, “It is assumed that patterns seen in the outer world characterize the inner world.”
The concept of, “I am the universe” is one that many of us embodied at age five, although perhaps was really unknown to us at the time. So the question becomes, “What happened between then and now that caused us to become separated from the universe? And how do we reconnect?”
Separation is due in part to that adult voice of ours that told the inner-five-year old, “Hey, look we don’t need anybody else! We can do this on our own.” Which of course we can; we can choose with our free will to be our own separate island—or we can choose to connect with the Universal source.
Think of it this way: Every time you exhale, over one hundred million atoms leave your body and travel out into the world. Every time you inhale, the same number of atoms returns to you. We are constantly breathing in one another and the Universe. When we consider how this connects to the scientific law of the conservation of energy, we realize that energy is never lost, nor does it die, it simply shifts, transfers, and maybe even transforms. In the same way, every breath connects us to the source of life and to ourselves, as the energy between the universe and ourselves is one and the same.
My five-year-old self did not seem to have a problem believing in that universal oneness and love, but at times,the adult me has trouble. In times like these, practices such as mindfulness and centering ourselves through meditation can be beneficial. The wonderful truth of these exercises is it’s not about ridding ourselves of us or trying to be a better us, but instead to become more of us.
Each morning I like to return to that inner five-year-old, which we all can do, by reflecting on an experience at that age. One of my favorites is racing around our Hawaiian cacao fields, marveling at the beauty of the cocoa pods and breathing in the scent of the ocean air, pre-Christmas morning. That youthful bliss reminds me of being open to the sentiment, “I Love Me” — the me, the you, and all that is; this is an acknowledgement each morning of receiving the wonder of life.
For the Find Bliss article click here