Holding, Offering & Being Presence
... within Yourself & for Others
Lovely friends, with so much turmoil engulfing our planet, our hearts can feel equally troubled and agitated. We long for answers, for relief, for an end to the suffering of so many, including ourselves. These are difficult times, no doubt.
We are encouraged to not remain silent to injustice and to lift our voices; to act on our convictions. There is another inner voice which also claims to be heard now too. It is the voice of silence and discernment; a call to inner quietude to rebalance ourselves. This is vitally important so that we can think clearly and act with wisdom.
It is impossible to think and act wisely if we cannot access any degree of calm within us. Calm = Clear = Wise.
A few years ago, I wrote this article for Spiritual Director's International: "Finding Inner Refuge in Trouble Times." Clearly, what I wrote about is still applicable and especially so today.
I hope you will find it helpful and take a few extra moments to work with the practice. May relief and refuge be yours.
Read it here: www.sdiworld.org/blog/finding-inner-refuge-troubled-times
May Love hold us.
In today's blog I share some thoughts about we can ensure our hearts do not become armored in stressful times. If you're feeling impatient and irritated, or frustrated, it may be a sign that your heart is closing off due to low level trauma. (Many of us these days are experiencing low level trauma due to the pandemic.) This is the perfect time and opportunity to hold presence for yourself! The video includes one of my favorites practices for this.
From My Heart to Yours
Today, I have a gift for you, a guided meditation (MP3) that I call "Resting Into Love." During trauma-filled times, it's a potent practice for letting go into ease and rest, into Love!
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This week I received this affirmation card from Unity. I'm on their mailing list and they send me lovely inspirational prayers, poems and booklets upon request. This card came unexpectedly. I didn't request it, but I sure did need it!
When I read the words of the affirmation I thought to myself, "Well, I'm not feeling this right now, that's for sure," which in itself is a cautionary tale. "So, where are you?" my wiser self asks.
Honestly? In the middle of pandemic like everyone else. A little bit lost in boredom and feelings of isolation. A note of worry or fear creeps in now and then. But mostly I feel agitated, ill-at-ease within myself. Not sleeping well, distracted, disoriented.
The questions beg to be asked: So what can you do in this moment to hold yourself kindly, with loving presence? What might you need to move away from so you can move toward the freedom that is expressed in the affirmation card—to feel unworried and free from tension?
For me, I need to experience less noise and more quiet. Have fewer items on my To-Do list and more rest. Less focusing on day-to-day drama and more attention paid to breath and being at ease in the moment.
One of the best ways for me to cultivate presence for myself in this time of pandemic and begin to "move easily in the flow of life" is to engage in Listening Meditation.
Years ago, I made this short video offering instruction for Listening Meditation. I hope you find it helpful. I still find it remarkable how letting go of doing anything in particular other than listening can return us to ease—even in difficult times.
Today, in the early hours of the morning, I sit listening to a cacophony of birds doing their daily rounds: calling to one another, rustling in the underbrush locating twigs to build nests, and singing gentle songs of new life to come. In just a few minutes, I feel myself back in the flow of life ... May it be so for you with the help of Listening Meditation.
a calm, open-hearted space of welcome & service.
I'm glad you're here. Welcome to this space of exploration, deepening understanding & the practice of presence across traditions.
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Janice Lynne Lundy, DMin
is an educator, interspiritual director/guide and retreat leader who has been pointing people back toward the Sacred for more than twenty years. She is the author of several spiritual growth books, including Your Truest Self, My Deepest Me and Portable Peace., and is the co-founder and co-director of the Spiritual Guidance Training Institute.