Open to a New Day

AWAKE – by Tammy

Birds are singing

while the wind dances through the trees,

I seal my eyes to drink in this sweet melody.

As the sun brings warmth to my face,

enjoying nature’s beauty and grace.

Thoughts pass by like clouds in my head

One mind, body, spirit,

present-but free,

Free to just be.

Poem by Tammy More @copyright 2014

As I began my morning, the beauty of all nature’s wonder was stoking the light inside.  This lead my spirit to sit in the center of my yard and just enjoy all of the bliss that this day was bringing to my soul.

Most of the days here in Florida are filled with nature’s essence, which I am thankful to enjoy.

Today was a little different, like I was being called to just take some time to sit and silence my mind and breathe all that is good.

Do you ever have those moments where the little voice in the back of your head is saying, take time to silence yourself?  You have time to appreciate the little treasures, which start with you!

So, I know this is a short post today, but this is a little poem I created from this morning’s silent escape.

This was one of my first poems and I wanted to share it with you all!

May your day be peaceful, loving and joyous!

Peace and love,

Tammy

No Limitations

 

No Limitations

 

 

I allow myself to exceed my expectations.  I remove all internal barriers created out of my own beliefs and fears in order to open my consciousness to the infinite.  There are no limitations, there is no end; everything is continuous.  I open my thoughts towards a broader horizon beyond my perception of reality.  I am now open to all new possibilities.

Mindful Meditation Relieves Inflammation

 

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A new University of Wisconsin-Madison study shows that meditation, a proven reducer of psychological stress, can also lessen stress-caused inflammation and thereby relieve the symptoms and pain of certain diseases.  Long-term stress has long been linked to inflammation, an underlying cause of many diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, bowel disease, asthma, heart disease and Type 2 diabetes.

Meditation study volunteers were divided into two groups–an eight-week mindfulness meditation course or a stress reduction program of supportive nutrition, exercise and music therapy that did not include meditation.  The meditation group focused attention on the breath, bodily sensations and mental content while seated, walking or practicing yoga.

Immune and endocrine data was collected before and after training in the two methods and mediation proved to be more effective.  Melissa Rosenkranz, a neuroscientist  with the university’s Center for Investigating Healthy Minds and lead author of the report, concludes that, “The mindfulness-based approach to stress reduction may offer a lower-cost alternative or complement to standard treatment, and it can be practiced easily by patients in their own homes whenever needed.”

Trekking as Pilgrimage: A Literal Path to Personal Growth

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For more than a millennium,, seekers have made spiritual pilgrimages on the Way of St. James, beginning at their chosen point in Europe, winding westward and ending in the Spanish city of Santiago de Compostela.  Today, as portrayed in the 2010 movie, The Way, the core route continues to attract both secular and devout trekkers.  It’s fair to say that every pilgrim derives something from the journey, although it’s not always what they expect.

Alyssa Machle, a landscape architect in San Francisco, imagined that walking The Way would be a quietly contemplative and solitary experience.  Instead, she spent weeks bonding with fellow trekkers: an Ohio schoolteacher trying to decide whether to become a Catholic nun, and a German woman in her 30’s unsettled by falling in love with her life partner’s best friend, a war veteran in his 70s.

“Inevitably, each person had some internal battle that he or she hoped to resolve,” Machle found.  “My own ideological shift was about setting aside preconceived ideas about how I would experience the path, and focusing my energy on the community that I suddenly was part of.”

The diverse goals of the people Machle met on The Way speaks to the power of adventurous treks.  From the Bible story of Moses and Israelites crossing the desert for 40 years to young Fellowship of the Ring members hiking across Middle Earth, we like the idea of walking long distances as a way to get in touch with ourselves–and often with something larger.  In America, there are as many trails to hike as there are reasons to do it.

For Cheryl Strayed, author of the 2012 bestselling memoir, Wild, hiking the Pacific Crest Trail at age 26 allowed her innate courage to blossom.  A rank novice, she took to the trails solo, grieving the early death of her mother, and discovered a new kind of self-reliance.  “Every time I heard a sound of unknown origin or felt something horrible cohering in my imagination, I pushed it away,” Strayed relates.  “I simply did not let myself become afraid.  Fear begets fear.  Power begets power.  I willed myself to beget power.  It wasn’t long before I actually wasn’t afraid.”

Other people on such journeys are inspired by their love for the environment, like Zen Buddhist priest and retired psychotherapist Shodo Spring, leader of this year’s Compassionate Earth Walk, a July-through-October protest of our nation’s dependence on fossil fuels.  It has engaged a “moving community” of shared prayers, meditation and yoga along the path of the pending Keystone XL pipeline from Hardisty, Alberta, Canada, to Steele City, Nebraska.

Spring emphasizes that the walk is intended to connect participants to the land and the people that live on it.  “We’re going to small towns,” she says, “where many residents make their livelihoods from oil.  There’s a deep division between such people and our group.  But when we listen to each other, that division gets healed.

Activist David Rogner says that long distance walks don’t just raise awareness of political and social issues–they also give people hope.  He spent 25 months walking across the United States in the first coast-to-coast roadside litter program, Pick Up America.

“As we walked and picked up trash, we inspired people to believe there could be change,” he says.  His trek gave him hope for his own future, too.  He now believes, “If you commit your life to the healing and restoration of community and yourself, you are going to be wholly provided for.”

Whatever the purpose, there are many scenic long-distance walking trails to choose from.  The Pacific Crest Trail, from the U.S.-Mexico border in Southern California to the uppermost reaches of Washington State, offers stunning views of the Sierra Nevada and Cascade mountain ranges.  The Appalachian Trail, which winds 2,200 miles between Georgia and Maine, provides 250 shelters and campsites.  In Wisconsin, the 1,000 mile Ice Age Trail offers awe-inspiring views of glacial landscapes.  Starting in North Carolina, the Mountains-to-Sea trail extends from the Great Smoky Mountains to the crystal-blue waters of the Outer Banks.  In Missouri, the Ozark Trail sweeps through mountains, lush valleys and tumbling waterfalls.  Plus, overseas trails await, as well.

 

Sarah Todd is a writer and editor in Brooklyn, NY.  Connect at SarahToddInk.com.

First Day of the Power of Kindness Class- Glad you are attending!

I would first like to say Happy Easter to everyone!  Wishing you the best of all good things and may your day be peaceful and blessed!

This day as in every day is one of beauty and wonder as we live on this earth.  This morning there was a sunrise service at Unity Church and it was the most amazing Easter Sunday I have ever experienced.  The service was held out in the garden as all gathered around the flowers, trees and just breathed in the essence of Mother Earth.  There was music that flowed through the ceremony, but also an extra melody from the birds encompassing the sky over head.  They wanted to be a part of the enjoyment  and they were.  What more could you ever ask for?  Love is everywhere, in all beings and all things for us to take in and enjoy!  We all have divine love within us to share with everyone and what a precious gift to be able to share!

For those who may have read the post about the “Power of Kindness” class will know that this is the first day to begin learning about how to bring more kindness to yourself and others.   If you are reading this and were not aware, for that I apologize, but you can still take part.  This is for anyone and everyone in the world who would like to join.  The class is FREE!  For information on the class you can go to http://www.kindliving.net .  To get a copy of the book: “The Power of Kindness by Piero Ferruci”  the link is:  http://tinyurl.com/KL-PowerofKindness.

For the first day’s module, there are three themes:

1. do something kind for yourself.

2. do something kind for a good friend.

3. do something kind for a stranger.

The theme’s are explained in detail on the site: kindliving.net

You can choose one of the theme’s or if you like all three!  Maybe you will find yourself doing them without even knowing.  Wouldn’t that be awesome!

For me personally, I chose the first one.  The path that I am on at this moment is one of many goals that I think need to be hurried to meet.  That thought was in my head until yesterday when I participated in a silent retreat at Unity.  For those who have never experienced a silent retreat, I have to say that it is worth the experience, even if you just try it once in your life.  Here is  a brief description of what the day was like:(I will do my best to make it as brief as possible).  It is an all day event which starts at 10:00 a.m. and ends at 4:30 p.m.   First thing is putting everything away, turning off cell phones and placing purses and shoes under in the area where you will sit.

10:30- 11:00 a.m. Qi Gong

11:00-11:30- sitting meditation

11:30-12:00 walking meditation-outside in the garden

12:00-12:30 sitting meditation (Affirmative Mantra Meditation)

12:30-1:30 lunch

1:30-2:00 Qi Gong

2:00-2:30 Sitting Meditation(chanting)

2:30-3:00 Walking Meditation

3:00-3:30 Tea Ceremony

3:30-4:00 scriptural meditation

4:00-4:30 closing ceremony

This whole day you were silent which gives you a chance to slow down, come and see inside your true being and breathe in everything around you with a different perspective.

When I first arrived, my mind was trying to talk me out of being there, but after I really tuned into my breath, closed my eyes and just let it be and not listen to my mind, I was free and relaxed!  It was as if a huge weight was lifted from my whole body and I was light, with nothing to do and was not worried about anything!

After coming home, I still was in a free state of mind and wanted to stay silent.  It was nice and refreshing.

So many of us rush around in our lives thinking that is what we are supposed to do, not taking that much time for love and devotion to our own selves.  Loving yourself is necessary.  You are worthy of love and slowing down from time to time can be an awakening within yourself.  For me, I came to appreciate life more, looking at the environment around me in a happier and more open way.

Today the kindness to myself is to just rest, relax and be kind to my body.  Rejuvenation is energizing for the mind, body and spirit!

Much peace, love and happiness to you all!

Tammy

Breathing Into Spring…the Sweet Water of Life

It’s the second day of Spring and yesterday it was sunny and beautiful.  Today it is cloudy and the wind is sharing its freedom of expression.  I love when there is a change in season, especially spring because it brings a new and fresh awakening to life and to ourselves.   There are many aspects of how one will create and live out their new season.  Some of us will clean out all the old clothes, or get rid of stuff we are no longer using or for that matter really need, hence the term “Spring Cleaning.”

But what about cleansing our mind, body and spirit.  How can we bring more love, peace and compassion to ourselves and share it with others?  There is so much joy and beauty on this earth that we can not only see every day, but have the opportunity to really enjoy and be thankful.  You may want to try something new that you have thought about for some time, but just keep saying to yourself: ” Maybe tomorrow.”  Every day is a new experience, and if you have a passion for something, just do it!   Perhaps there are steps you would like to fulfill to make this possible.

You could pick a peaceful place to just take some time to be alone, close your eyes and breathe in the fresh air, while letting the sounds of nature sink into your being.  Imagine what that would feel like to just be there, with your eyes closed, but open to your environment.  Are you there yet?

Release everything that has already happened that may have brought stress, unhappiness or sadness to your life.  Move forward and let all  the love and positivity be drawn to you.  You are worthy of happiness, peace and love.

Inspiring others will bring forth your inspiration and will also liven your spirit!  I think bringing encouragement to others, not only benefits them, but you as well.  Raise the compassion frequency!

Nourish yourself by opening your heart to all!  It does the heart good when you share your love and compassion with all who you meet in life.  We may have only one heart, but all of them are connected.

Grow from within, watering the seed of your being so it may blossom for the world to see.  Keep grounded and surround yourself with positivity and love.  Is there something new you would like to learn?  Why not seek and satisfy your curiosity?  You have the power within you for all that is good.  Each of us has a unique talent and gift that we can share.  Put some spring into your step and move into a new adventure!

Peace and love to all!