Peace in Simplicity

'Berkeley Botanical Garden' flickrcc.net

‘Berkeley Botanical Garden’
flickrcc.net

Driving in the countryside at this time of year feels like waking up from a delicious, afternoon nap; you know that you have to get up and move onto to other things but the cells in your body balk at the idea of any hurry. As you linger in the peacefulness, your senses slowly stirring, everything just feels good. That’s the way I felt as I let the open road free me into contentment. Lush vistas splashed with bright blooms, thriving, towering trees, and the occasional team of statuesque horses was everything I could need just then. I lost myself in the simple beauty and the soft melodies of birdsongs – until I was rudely assaulted. There it was, a heap of rotting, rusting junk, piled 20 feet high, a mountain of chaos and complication. It was an ugly sculpture. It didn’t belong there in the middle of God’s gardens. Nearby, papers of all shapes and sizes were strewn down the hillside, grey and dirty dots blemishing Her work of art. It’s offensiveness to my senses was unmistakable and instantaneous; my eyes averted at the moment that my body winced. I felt Gaia’s pain, and together we wept. Sadly I thought, “This is just one very small scar on her back. She carries the burden of all our human stuff.” It struck me then that we need to heed the call back to simplicity.

It seems we lost sight of basic considerations as our industrial and technological evolutions grew in tandem with our population explosion. It appears quality has been replaced by quantity, and value traded for disposability. We continue to deplete the earth of her resources, and dump our discards onto and into her body. It begs us to examine what we must believe that we deem this to be acceptable; where is the confusion about our interdependence? Perhaps it begins in the muddle and misunderstanding of our own selves. When did we forget that our bodies have the capacity for self-healing if we nurture them with space, stillness and peace, that our minds are as creative as what we fill them with, and that our emotions are designed as vibrational interpreters of our state of well being? When did we learn to compromise these exquisitely perfect faculties and neglect our intrinsic worth?

We still have the chance now to make better choices. We can wake up and liberate ourselves from the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual clutter that separates us from Divine Creation. I offer here some down-to-earth ideas to anchor heaven here now.

Simple Things

The more I value what I possess within me the less I attach to what’s outside me. Over the years, I’ve learned that no matter how much I may want something I often don’t need it. This is not to deny myself my pleasures. But unless something is essential or holds significant meaning I don’t bring it home with me. These days I’m inclined to ask myself, “Where will this go on this earth when its importance to me fades?” And often the illusion does. There is great freedom in letting go of a supposed need; in doing so you affirm to yourself “I am enough”.

Simple Thoughts

There’s only one question I can repeatedly ask myself that cuts through any mess in my mind: “Am I choosing love or fear?” I know there’s only one answer that will serve me well: “I choose love.” Too simple? Try it out for a day, each time you need to act, speak, or decide. As you choose love you remind yourself who you are.

Simple Sounds

“Before speaking consider whether it is an improvement upon silence.”* Frequently we clutter up silences in our conversations with trivial chatter because we’re too uncomfortable with ourselves or others. I’ve learned that words are unnecessary when my heart is full. I don’t need to make myself more. And Earth doesn’t need my distractions as she has her own most beautiful music. When you give yourself permission to say nothing, to pause, you allow your inner wisdom to speak instead. It’s a gentle sound and there are lifetimes of truth within you.

Simple Relationships

Rumi said it best; “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field. I’ll meet you there.” If I believe that I can control another, or expect someone to conform, or criticize another, I imbalance the equal significance we each have in the Universe. If I sit in gratitude in the middle of our differences I honour the Creator’s grand vision. The key is respect for all of me; if I own not only my light but also my shadow – the part of myself I would rather deny – then I need not project it onto others nor insist on correcting it in others. When you integrate the polarities you hold within yourself you move beyond judgment of right and wrong and into valuing others. You can only unite in the field of love through self-acceptance.

Simple Spirit

My hunger for higher learning is sometimes insatiable. I seek and soak it up. My soul contracts with anything rote and expands with sacred diversity. I can invest my heart and mind in many interests at once. But then I sometimes I have to bring myself back to the essential me. I put aside the knowledge I brought with me from my many pasts, my healing tools and techniques, and even my joyous desires. I sit, breathe and I empty myself into the expansiveness of who I AM. Then I AM All That I AM, and I am Everything.

Gandhi said, “May I live simply, that others may simply live.” Let’s do that. Let’s answer to the beckoning of ease. Let’s each place the peace of simplicity into the vibration of our being, so that we may all live in peace.

* Phillip Simmons, Learning to Fall

 Peace Practices made simple:

  • Give away what is no longer of use to you. Donate, offer, bequeath, present – regenerate the joy of giving.
  • Let go of something you believe really matters to you. Nurture detachment and affirm self-worth.
  • Watch The Story of Stuff – a free, easy-to-understand, animated short about the complicated chain of production and our excess consumption of stuff. Take one suggested step toward greater sustainability.
  • Don’t speak for a day. Listen to Spirit emerging. Then let your words express the language of Light.
  • Keep asking, “Am I choosing love or fear?”
  • Experiment with asking yourself, “Am I choosing simple or complicated?”
  • Name a quality you don’t like in yourself (for example, procrastinating) and the opposing energy (doing everything right away). Nurture the peace in the middle – reframe your shadow and rename it (doing things when they feel right to me).
  • At the end of the day, before your eyes close for the night, ask yourself, “How did I live in peace today?” Keep the peacemakers, let go of everything else.

Copyright 2009 (Amâeil ) Melinda Urban All Rights Reserved

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