Archive for April, 2010

Finding Gifts In All

April 29, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

We can reframe bad days by spending some time before going to bed each night to review the gifts we received that day.

When we have good days, we often find ourselves going over the details later, enjoying them a second and third time as we feel the joy of our good fortune. When we have bad days, we may find ourselves poring over the details of our misfortunes. However, we can reframe those bad days by making it a daily practice to spend some time before going to bed each night to review the gifts we received that day. Regardless of our evaluation of the day—good, bad, mediocre—we can call forth the many blessings that were present. This practice transforms our consciousness as it reveals the fullness at the heart of our lives.

Some days it’s easy to recount the gifts we’ve received; on other days, we have to look harder for the offerings of the day, but once we do, we will find there are always quite a few. We can keep it simple and be grateful for the fact that we have a roof over our head, nature, food, and our health. Once we have fully experienced these gifts, we can move outward to the gifts that may require a little more thought such as the gifts of forgiveness, tolerance and acceptance that we may have learned that day.  We can also always be grateful for the people in our lives who support us, no matter how bad our day may have been.

Just reviewing the many positive offerings in our lives provides a context for our difficulties that puts them in proper perspective, but we can also make an effort to see the gifts even in adverse circumstances. This can be challenging and may require some practice before it feels authentic, but we have all had the experience of a disappointment or loss leading to a surprising gain. Just remembering this and trusting the give and take of life can help us to remember that sometimes the best gifts of all are the ones we don’t recognize right away. In addition, the lessons we learn in the face of adversity are offerings in their own right, allowing us to count patience, wisdom, and fortitude alongside the other gifts of the day.

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Shedding Light On Ourselves

April 28, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

When we choose that which is not best for us, there can be a deep seated part of us that does not want to heal.

In almost every case, we know what is best for us in our lives, from the relationships we create to the food we eat. Still, somewhat mysteriously, it is often difficult to make the right choices for ourselves. We find ourselves hanging out with someone who leaves us feeling drained or choosing to eat fast food over a salad. We go through phases where we stop doing yoga or taking vitamins, even though we feel so much better when we do. Often we have no idea why we continue to make the less enlightened choice, but it is important that we inquire into ourselves to find out.

When we choose that which is not best for us, the truth can be that there is a deep seated part of us that does not want to heal. We may say it’s because we don’t have the time or the energy or the resources, but the real truth is that when we don’t take care of ourselves we are falling prey to self-sabotage. Self-sabotage happens unconsciously, which is why it’s so difficult to see that we are doing it. The important thing to realize is that this very part of us that resists our healing is the part that most needs our attention and love. Even as it appears to be working against us, if we can simply bring it into the light of our consciousness, it can become our greatest ally. It carries the information we need to move to the next level in our healing process.

When we recognize that we are not making healthy choices, we might even say out loud, “I am not taking care of myself.” Sometimes this is the jolt we need to wake up to what is actually happening. Next we can sit ourselves down in meditation, with a journal, or with a trusted friend to explore the matter more thoroughly. Just shining the light of our awareness on the source of our resistance is sometimes enough to dispel its power. At other times, further effort is required. Either way, we need not fear these parts that do not want to heal. We only need to take them under our wing and bring them with us into the light.

Releasing and Welcoming

April 27, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

Sweeping your porch each day is regarded as an important cleansing ritual that prepares your home for new energy.

In some of our lives, sweeping has become an activity performed without much thought. In many cases, sweeping is a lost art, replaced by the noisy, efficient vacuum cleaner. But in several cultures and religions, sweeping the front and back porch every morning is regarded as an important cleansing ritual that prepares the ground for new energy on every level—physically, spiritually, emotionally, and mentally. It is often employed to sanctify a space and prepare it for a ceremony. This seemingly simple action has the power to clear away the old and make space for the new. It stirs up the energy in a place, clearing out the astral buildup that is the natural by-product of the presence of humans.

This kind of sweeping is not about cleaning the area of dust. In fact, the broom doesn’t have to actually touch the ground to be effective. You might want to consider having two different brooms, one you use for cleaning dust and dirt, and one you use for energy clearing. If you are so inspired, you could decorate your broom by carving its handle, painting it, decorating it with gemstones and ribbons, or any other creative adornment that appeals to you. You can also make your own broom out of tree branches and twigs, or choose a naturally appearing broom from nature, such as a pine bough.

Sweeping each morning prepares the ground for the new day at the same time as it deepens our awareness of the importance of letting go of the past to welcome the present. As we clear the energy of our space, we clear our own energy systems. In addition, we create a space that feels clean, clear, and open to all who enter. Be sure to think welcoming thoughts as you sweep, manifesting what you need for the day. Making sweeping part of our daily ritual tunes us into the continuing cycle of releasing the old and welcoming the new that is the hallmark of a healthy energy system.

3 Exercises to Reduce Fear and Anxiety

April 26, 2010

[ Posted by Marc Lesser, the author of Less : Accomplishing More By Doing Less]

I notice that in the many seminars I lead in the business world, that fear, and its various manifestations, are at the root of important and difficult issues. The more we can understand and transform fear, the more we can accomplish with less wasted effort. Fear can be a useful ally. It can focus us, keep us safe, even at times keep us alive. Fear of illness or injury can motivate us to stop smoking, to exercise, and to eat healthier food. In our communities, it can motivate us to make our air and water cleaner, our bridges and levees stronger, our workplaces safer.

Fear can also be an enormous hindrance. Fear can color our world so that a stick can appear as a dangerous snake or an offer of friendship can be perceived as an imposition or even an attack. We can fear not getting promoted or losing our jobs; fear what people think about us, or fear that people aren’t thinking at all about us. We can fear the loss of a loved one, fear getting older, fear dying. The list of possible fears is almost endless, so it is not surprising that, sometimes without being aware of it, our actions and decisions can become ruled by fear. Living with fear can become an accepted and habitual way of being, leading to thoughts and actions that create more fear in a difficult-to-stop chain reaction – in ourselves, in relationships, in businesses and organizations, and in the world.

When we are afraid, our first impulse is to tighten our bodies and shut down our minds. We become the opposite of receptive and playful, and this is an enormous hindrance to learning new skills in the workplace, to collaborating, and to making interpersonal connections. The impulse to tighten can become so deeply ingrained that we may not even be aware of the ways that we keep ourselves back, or of the subtle and not-so-subtle ways that we communicate our fears to others.

Buddhism speaks of five primary fears:
• Fear of losing our state of mind
• Fear of public humiliation, or fear of speaking in public
• Fear of losing one’s reputation
• Fear of losing one’s livelihood
• Fear of death

Reducing fear (and its physical manifestation, anxiety) and opening oneself to new possibilities – surprises, even – is the first step, I believe, toward a more lasting sense of accomplishment. Reducing fear can be the first action that frees us to achieve a goal (even when, in losing our fear, our goal becomes something very different from previously imagined).

A few practices are:
– awareness of fear: begin just by noticing – when are you afraid; where does fear reside in your body; when do you move away from fear and when do you move toward fear? You might even try the practice of inviting your fears to tea.

– playing with time and how you think about and relate to time: try noticing the difference between relative time and time that is not relative. Experiment with just doing what you are doing, without trying to get to the next thing (not so easy…)

– practice generosity: by helping others, being aware of other’s needs and feelings. Notice how this reduces your fear.

Heal the Earth with Positive Vibrations

April 24, 2010

[ Posted by Susan Wagner in Care2 ]

Since we are celebrating the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, I thought I’d give you another perspective on helping our planet. I call it Vibrational Sustainability. This “green” concept allows us to go beyond recycling, planting trees and using personal care products that are free of toxins. It takes global warming and controlling emissions to an entirely new level.

I’d like to teach you about your own energetic emissions, and how you can aid the welfare of the planet and all her creatures simply by controlling your emotional output. Emotions are waveforms that influence all life around us, because everything is based in energy. Scientists have shown that all animate and inanimate objects are made of vibrating waves of electromagnetic energy. When we feel an emotion, we literally send off waves, as if we were a pebble thrown into a pond.

The earth has a natural, healthy vibration that is created by the energy of the soil, planets and animals. Animals serve many roles when it comes to energy of the planet. Their energy fields are far more expansive than ours – a dog’s field is approximately ten times that of a human’s. A horse’s  will encompass a large arena, and a cat’s will fill an entire property. The energy of wildlife is especially important to the survival of the planet. They create frequencies that maintain stability and promote healing.

The earth’s frequency is approximately 8 – 10 Hz, and is also created by Schumann Resonances, which are vibrations formed in the space between the ground and clouds. We can’t see them, but they bounce up and down, as sound waves travel through the shaft of a wind instrument.

There was an interesting experiment done in Europe in the 1960’s. Human subjects were placed in a lead shielded underground living space, blocking outside electromagnetic radiation.  Eventually the humans became confused and agitated, and their biorhythms were disrupted. Researchers then pulsed in varying frequencies and measured the effects on the subjects. The frequency that helped them regain normalcy was 10 Hz – the same as the earth’s natural resonance.

8-10 Hz is the identical frequency range as alpha waves in our brains. This brain activity is produced when we are in a state of relaxation. Being in an alpha state gives us a sense of well-being, increases creativity, and enhances our immune systems. Our optimal vibration is the same as the earth’s inherent frequency. We are meant to live in harmony with nature, not in discord.

Now we know why natural surroundings are good for us. But energy transmission goes both ways. We receive from the earth, and the earth receives from us. When we feel scattered and chaotic, we transmit those frequencies to all the people and animals around us, and to the earth. By being joyful and at peace with ourselves and those around us, we can help heal the planet. Who would have thought tree hugging was really quantum physics in action?

So next time, stop, smell and be grateful for the roses – it will help you and Mother Nature!

The Earth Day “Not Rocket Science” Eco-ABC’s

April 23, 2010

[ Posted by Ronnie Citron-Fink in Care2 ]

Happy 40th Anniversary Planet Earth! As a global holiday, celebrating Earth Day galvanizes us to think about the hopes we have for our planet. Every day provides us another opportunity to recommit how we care. You and I, and the rest of the inhabitants of this planet have a common goal. We share a future that depends upon each other. How we preserve, protect and persevere will make the ultimate difference.

Don’t let anyone tell you that reduce, reuse and recycle, green, eco-friendly and sustainable are meaningless cliches. Yes, they may have evolved, been overused, and their meanings may be watered down and sometimes used unsavorily, but that’s no reason to throw in the towel. It just means we’ll continue to answer the hard questions creatively and collectively about climate, the environment, our health, spirituality and how these all will impact our global family. I bet we continue to find the answers needed to ease the Earth’s stresses.

You’ve found your way to Care2 because you want to make a difference in your life, the lives of others and our planet. What I find so remarkable about this community is how we all approach our collective goal through the eyes of our rich and diverse cultures. Action comes in all shades of green, and once we’ve obtained the tools, we can look into our unique lives and view the future through a green lens. Think of it as an eco-filter. It is everyone’s responsibility to take action to keep our planet smiling.

I put together an ABC guide with some ideas and tips you have no doubt heard about before, and others that may have never even entered your eco-radar screen. These simple tips are not rocket science, but collectively they can be a springboard for important discussions about our collective future.

OK, pep talk over. Let’s start reciting our Eco-ABC’s.

A is for Adjust Your Thermostat
B is for Both Sides of the Paper are Usable
C is for Cruise Control: To Save You Gas
D is for Diaper With a Conscience
E is for Eat Organic
F is for Fly With an E-Ticket
G is for Go Vegetarian Once a Week
H is for Hang Dry
I is for Invest in Your Own Coffee Cup
J is for Junk Mail – Cut it Out of Your Life
K is for Keep Your Fireplace Damper Closed
L is for Local: The Way To Go
M is for Make a Bag And Use It
N is for Newspapers – Recycle and Consider Alternatives
O is for Old Cell Phones Need a New Life
P is for Plastic Bottles
Q is for Q-Tips
R is for Recycle Glass
S is for Shower Instead of Baths
T is for Turn Off Computers at Night
U is for Use Fewer Paper Napkins
V is for Vacations
W is for Wash in Cold Water
X is for X Out Your Phone Book
Y is for Your Enemy is Greenwashing
Z is for Zipcars Can Replace Your Car

Some of the information gathered for this guide is adapted from 50 Ways To Help.

Learning to Follow

April 22, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

When we approach children with the awareness that they are our teachers, we become more present ourselves.

As grown-ups, we often approach children with ideas about what we can teach them about this life to which they have so recently arrived. It’s true that we have important information to convey, but children are here to teach us just as much as we are here to teach them. They are so new to the world and far less burdened with preconceived notions about the people, situations, and objects they encounter. They do not avoid people on the basis of appearance, nor do they regard shoes as having only one function. They can be fascinated for half an hour with a pot and a lid, and they are utterly unself-conscious in their emotional expressions. They live their lives fully immersed in the present moment, seeing everything with the open-mindedness born of unknowing. This enables them to inhabit a state of spontaneity, curiosity, and pure excitement about the world that we, as adults, have a hard time accessing. Yet almost every spiritual path calls us to rediscover this way of seeing.  In this sense, children are truly our gurus.

When we approach children with the awareness that they are our teachers, we automatically become more present ourselves. We have to be more present when we follow, looking and listening, responding to their lead. We don’t lapse so easily into the role of the director of activities, surrendering instead to having no agenda at all. As we allow our children to determine the flow of play, they pull us deeper into the mystery of the present moment. In this magical place, we become innocent again, not knowing what will happen next and remembering how to let go and flow.

Since we must also embody the role of loving guide to our children, they teach us how to transition gracefully from following to leading and back again. In doing so, we learn to dance with our children in the present moment, shifting and adjusting as we direct the flow from pretending to be kittens wearing shoes on our heads to making sure everyone is fed and bathed.

Changing Your World

April 21, 2010

[ Posted in Care2, adapted from The Ultimate Happiness Prescription, by Deepak Chopra ]

 Know that the outer world reflects your inner reality. It has no other option. You live in two domains at the same time, and the unmanifest, invisible domain is primary. Whatever occurs at the deepest level of the unmanifest must come into being as an outer event, situation, challenge, crisis, or opportunity. The unmanifest is where the script of your life is written.

If that is so, naturally you would want to write a script that includes happiness, joy, and love. So why is it so rare for life to bring us those things? Without understanding deeper levels of consciousness, you will not be able to take advantage of them.

Several conditions must be accepted by you as true: Consciousness exists everywhere; It is infinitely flexible; Reality changes indifferent states of consciousness.

We are used to thinking that the opposites of these statements is true. We limit consciousness to the brain, we assume that a person’s level of awareness is fixed, and we believe that reality is essentially the same for everyone. The irony is that the universe, being a conscious entity, reflects those very beliefs. To truly unite your inner and outer worlds, a shift is needed in your belief system.

Your true identity is neither the inner nor the outer world. You are the creator of both. The same source that creates thoughts, feelings, memories, emotions, and all subjective experience simultaneously creates the objective world that matches your subjective state.

If you don’t like what is happening around you, don’t try to “fix it.” That would be like polishing the mirror hoping to change the reflection you see in it. In order to change what you see, there has to be a new message coming from the source.

The Real Thing

April 20, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

Love should feel good.  Relationships that leave you feeling depleted, sad and making excuses are not based in love.

Often in our lives, we fall prey to the idea of a thing rather than actually experiencing the thing itself. We see this at play in our love lives and in the love lives of our friends, our family, and even fictional characters. The conceptualizing, depiction, and pursuit of true love are multimillion-dollar industries in the modern world. However, very little of what is offered actually leads us to an authentic experience of love. Moreover, as we grasp for what we think we want and fail to find it, we may suffer and bring suffering to others. When this is the case, when we suffer more than we feel healed, we can be fairly certain that what we have found is not love but something else.

When we feel anxious, excited, nervous, and thrilled, we are probably experiencing romance, not love. Romance can be a lot of fun as long as we do not try to make too much of it. If we try to make more of it than it is, the romance then becomes painful. Romance may lead to love, but it may also fade without blossoming into anything more than a flirtation. If we cling to it and try to make it more, we might find ourselves pining for a fantasy, or worse, stuck in a relationship that was never meant to last.

Real love is identifiable by the way it makes us feel. Love should feel good. There is a peaceful quality to an authentic experience of love that penetrates to our core, touching a part of ourselves that has always been there. True love activates this inner being, filling us with warmth and light. An authentic experience of love does not ask us to look a certain way, drive a certain car, or have a certain job. It takes us as we are, no changes required. When people truly love us, their love for us awakens our love for ourselves. They remind us that what we seek outside of ourselves is a mirror image of the lover within. In this way, true love never makes us feel needy or lacking or anxious. Instead, true love empowers us with its implicit message that we are, always have been, and always will be, made of love.

Burdensome Feelings

April 17, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

Blaming sets up a situation in which it becomes difficult to move forward and puts resolution in the hands of others.

As we begin to truly understand that the world outside of us is a reflection of the world inside of us, we may feel confused about who is to blame for the problems in our lives. If we had a difficult childhood, we may wonder how we can take responsibility for that, and in our current relationships, the same question arises. We all know that blaming others is the opposite of taking responsibility, but we may not understand how to take responsibility for things that we don’t truly feel responsible for. We may blame our parents for our low self-esteem, and we may blame our current partner for exacerbating it with their unconscious behavior. Objectively, this seems to make sense. After all, it is not our fault if our parents were irresponsible or unkind, and we are not to blame for our partner’s bad behavior.

Perhaps the problem lies with the activity of blaming. Whether we blame others or blame ourselves, there is something aggressive and unkind about it. It sets up a situation in which it becomes difficult to move forward under the burdensome feelings of shame and guilt that arise. It also puts the resolution of our pain in the hands of someone other than us. Ultimately, we cannot insist that someone else take responsibility for their actions; only they can make that choice when they are ready. In the meantime, if we want to move forward with our lives instead of waiting around for something that may or may not happen, we begin to see the wisdom of taking the situation into our own hands.

We do this by forgiving our parents, even if they have not asked for our forgiveness, so that we can be free. We end the abusive relationship with our partner, who may never admit to any wrongdoing, because we are willing to take responsibility for how we are treated. In short, we love ourselves as we want to be loved and create the life we know we deserve. We leave the resolution of the wrongs committed against us in the hands of the universe, releasing ourselves to live a life free of blame.

An Empowered Perspective

April 15, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

In order to forgive, we need to try and stop identifying ourselves with the suffering that was caused.

When someone has hurt us, consciously or unconsciously, one of the most difficult things we have to face in resolving the situation is the act of forgiveness. Sometimes it feels like it’s easier not to forgive and that the answer is to simply cut the person in question out of our lives. In some cases, ending the relationship may be the right thing to do, but even in that case, we will only be free if we have truly forgiven. If we harbor bitterness in our hearts against anyone, we only hurt ourselves because we are the ones harboring the bitterness. Choosing to forgive is choosing to alleviate ourselves of that burden, choosing to be free of the past, and choosing not to perceive ourselves as victims.

One of the reasons that forgiveness can be so challenging is that we feel we are condoning the actions of the person who caused our suffering, but this is a misunderstanding of what is required. In order to forgive, we simply need to get to a place where we are ready to stop identifying ourselves with the suffering that was caused us. Forgiveness is something we do for ourselves, and our forgiveness of others is an extension of our readiness to let go of our own pain. Getting to this point begins with fully accepting what has happened. Through this acceptance, we allow ourselves to feel and process our emotions.

It can be helpful to articulate our feelings in writing over a period of days or even weeks. As we allow ourselves to say what we need to say and ask for what we need to heal, we will find that this changes each day. It may be confusing, but it is a sign of progress. At times we may feel as if we are slogging uphill through dense mud and thick trees, getting nowhere. If we keep going, however, we will reach a summit and see clearly that we are finally free of the past. From here, we recognize that suffering comes from suffering, and compassion for those who have hurt us naturally arises, enhancing our new perspective.

Owning the Roots

April 14, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

Often the best way to create change is not to try to convince others to change, but to change ourselves.

We all know from experience that we can’t change other people, yet most of us have a tendency to try. This is because we naturally feel the need to do something to change situations that we find troubling. It often doesn’t occur to us that the best way to create change is not to try to convince others to change but to change ourselves. When we make adjustments from within, we become role models for others, and leading by example is much more inspiring than a lecture or an argument.

We sometimes look outside ourselves for what’s wrong with the world, but the outside world is really just a mirror reflecting us back to ourselves. When we encounter negativity—anger, depression, fear—we empower ourselves by looking for its roots inside of ourselves. For example, if you have a friend who is unreliable, observe yourself and notice if there are ways in which you are unreliable. You may be surprised to discover that you have your own struggles with this issue in ways you weren’t able to see. Once you own the issue for yourself, you can begin to work for change within yourself. This will also enable you to have more compassion for your friend. At the very least, as you strive to become more reliable, you will become more of the person you want to be. In the best-case scenario, you will be an inspiration to others.

You can apply the same method to larger issues. For example, if there is something you see in the larger world that you would like to change—let’s say, greed—try taking responsibility for changing it in yourself. Instead of being angry with those you see as greedy, seek out the roots of your own greed and come to terms with your power to transform it. This may be the best way to lead the world toward greater moderation and generosity.

Finding the Place You Belong

April 13, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

Moving locations when you feel strongly to do so is a way of bringing your spiritual and earthly energies together.

There will likely be times in your life when your soul evolves more quickly than your circumstances. Your subconscious mind may be ready to move forward long before you recognize that you are destined to embrace a new way of life. Your soul intuitively understands that changing habitats can be a vital part of the growth process and that there may be one part of you that is eager to move to another home, another state, or another plane of existence. But the ties that bind you to your current mode of being can make moving into this next stage of your life more challenging than it has to be. If you find it difficult to move on, consider that just as people in your life may come and go, your role in others’ lives may also be temporary. And many of the conditions that at first seemed favorable served you for a short time. When you are ready to match your situation to your soul, you will find that you feel a new sense of harmony and increasingly connected to the ebb and flow of the universe.

Moving on can be defined in numerous ways. Your forward momentum may take you from your current locale to a place you instinctively know will be more nurturing, comfortable, and spiritually enriching. Once you arrive, your misgivings will vanish, and you will know that you have found a sanctuary. Similarly, subtle changes in your values, goals, or emotional needs can motivate you to distance yourself from one group of people in order to reassociate yourself with individuals that are better able to support you. For example, this could mean moving away from your birth family in order to find your energetic or spiritual family. The route you need to travel may not always be clear; you may feel inspired to change yet be unsure as to why or how. Clarity may come in the form of a question if you are willing to seriously ask yourself where your soul is trying to take you.

In a way, moving from one point to another when you feel strongly driven to do so is a way of bringing your spiritual and earthly energies together. It is a two-step process that involves not only letting go but also reconnecting. You will know you have found your destination, physical or otherwise, when you feel in your heart that you have been reborn into a life that is just the right shape, size, and composition.

Less Than Perfect

April 10, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

When we choose a leader, we often place our faith in that person to a degree that exceeds what is humanly possible.

When we recognize someone as a leader, we often place our faith in that person to a degree that exceeds what is humanly possible. In other words, we expect them to be beyond fault and to not make mistakes. This, of course, is neither realistic nor fair. Just like us, these people are living human lives, and part of the deal is learning through experience and working out our individual karmas. There will always be missteps and things they would do differently given a second chance. If we are to be fair, we must grant our leaders the same forgiveness, compassion, and understanding that we grant our closest friends as they navigate the complex challenges of this human life.

Leaders are special people in that they have the ability to guide and represent large groups of people. In this calling, they agree, to some degree, to be responsible for the well-being of others. Because of this, we hold them up to a higher standard of behavior, and in some ways this is fair. However, we will only be disappointed and disillusioned time and time again if we expect them to be perfect. If they were perfect, they would not be here on earth. Perhaps the most we can expect of our leaders is that they make it a practice to acknowledge their shortcomings and learn from their experiences. Beyond this, when our leaders let us down, it is up to us to forgive and move on. Dwelling on disappointment and negativity creates more of the same.

People who choose to lead are often extraordinary individuals blessed with vision, energy, and charisma. It is their path to inspire, guide, and represent us, but it is not possible for them to never let us down. Leaders are on a path of growth just as we are. Perhaps this is something to remember when we have the opportunity to choose somebody in a leadership role, or perhaps you are ready to step into a role of leadership yourself.

Following Nature’s Cycles

April 9, 2010

[ From DailyOM ]

When you seek balance in your emotional life, try to also balance the natural elements in your living space.

Nature, in all its myriad forms, is the most powerful force on earth. Although mankind has tried, we have not found a way to match its awesome power, but we have found ways to work with it. Science often confirms the wisdom of the ancients who observed and then harnessed nature’s rhythms and cycles to shape and enhance their lives. We can begin to do this in our own lives by first paying attention to our own natural rhythms, such as when we wake or when we feel the need to sleep. If possible, we may want to try to rise and sleep with the sun or live without electricity for a weekend and then monitor how we feel. We can make the choice to eat the foods of the seasons and to seek fresher, locally grown, or organic produce whose own cycles have not been tampered with by technology. 

We can create harmony in our homes by making a smooth transition between our indoor and outdoor spaces. By bringing some of the outdoors inside and taking some of our indoor décor out, we can simultaneously enjoy nature and the comforts of home and the feeling that our living space is expanded. Then, whether inside or out, we can lounge on a comfortable piece of furniture and feel the wind, inhale the scent of deeply breathing plants, listen for the many songs of life, and observe the moon and the stars. As we do this more often, we may find ourselves noticing the pull of the full moon on bodies of water, as well as the water in bodies, or the music of the night acting as a lullaby.

When we seek balance in our lives, we want to balance not just our roles in life but also the natural elements in our spaces. Having representations of the elements in the colors, shapes, and textures of our homes will appeal to our mind, body, and spirit. We may find that when we sync ourselves with nature’s rhythms, we ride the waves of energy to feel more in harmony with life and the world around us.