Category Archives: Spirituality

Thought for Today

Copyright 2016 by R.A. Robbins

“I think a spiritual journey is not so much a journey of discovery. It’s a journey of recovery. It’s a journey of uncovering your own inner nature. It’s already there.”

—Billy Corgan

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Thought for Today

Copyright 2017 by R.A. Robbins

“We have a very decided part; we are to cease worrying, and being anxious, and thinking and speaking of the past and of the apparent lack and idleness. We are to concentrate all our attention upon the Truth of God, and the truth of our own being, upon the very things we would see taking place in our lives. We cannot do this so long as we have negative thoughts in our hearts.”

Myrtle Fillmore (Source:  In the Words of Myrtle Fillmore)

“They” Did it to Me

There is one thing in this world I know for sure.  We each create our own reality with our thoughts.  Unfortunately much of what we create is not real — it is simply an illusion.

One of the biggest illusions I seem to like to create is that outside forces have power over me.  Anyone else like to create that one?  The great nebulous “they” made me do it, or did it to me.  What really happens in these instances is that I do it to myself.

You see it’s not what others do or how they live that causes me problems, it’s how I react to it.  I always have a choice. Unfortunately I occasionally still chose to live on adrenaline and it doesn’t take much to get that going.  Bob being sick, a friend needing a lot of time and attention, going overboard with physical exercise can be all it takes to set off what I call an adrenaline storm.  As I am getting older and as I have been getting these under control “falling off the wagon” has become harder.  At the least, there is one heck of a “hangover.”  Just as with a storm related to weather whether it be rain, wind, snow, there is often clean-up that has to occur after the storm has passed, there is always clean-up to do and often consequences to live with when we create a reality that is out of balance and does not work.

So what do we do?  Do we give up and just “accept” our flawed reality as just the way life is?  Or do we pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, be patient with ourselves, learn something from the experience and recommit to our spiritual practice?  The choice is mine.  The choice is yours.

Leaving Footprints

On my morning walks I walk a short distance on a path of golf cart ruts and closely mowed grass.  This morning at the end of that trail as I turned to walk back I saw my footprints in the dewy grass.  Seeing this made me stop and think about the footprints I am leaving as I walk through this life.

Those who have spent time in state or national parks,  wood, forests or hiking in the “back country” will be familiar with the signs that say, “Take only memories, leave only footprints.”  This is a quote often attributed to Chief Seattle.  In the context of a nature area this means to leave the flowers, rocks and other natural elements where they are, keeping them in your memory or camera and pack out your trash.

Let’s explore the idea of taking only memories and leaving only footprints a bit in the context of the larger picture of life.  First the taking.

  • How much do we take from life and from the earth?  Do we take more that we need?  Do we use more than our share of the resources our planet provides for our survival?
  • Do we live a life of humility and simplicity, or are we always grabbing for more?
  • Do we care that others may not have what they need as long as we have everything we want?
  • Are we taking time to make memories that we will take with us throughout our lives and leave for others when we are gone?  Are we having experiences we will want to remember?  Are we giving these kinds of experiences to our families?

Now let’s think about what we are giving to the world and the footprints we are leaving behind.

  • Are we leaving a lot of trash as we go through life?  This could be actual physical trash or actions, beliefs or thoughts that cause harm.
  • Are we spending our lives collecting up “stuff” that will have little or no meaning in the end?
  • Are we shining our light in the world?
  • Are we teaching by example?
  • Will our footprints show others the way?

We all leave footprints as we walk through this life.  Are yours taking you where you really want to go?  Are they leading you and those who may follow to life or to destruction?

So How Do We Resist?

Copyright 2014 by R.A. Robbins

In the early days of the Trump presidency I found myself beginning to get caught up in the “we have to resist” frenzy.  Living in a rather remote area and travel being difficult for us right now kept us from rushing off to participate in marches, rallies and other forms of “protest.”  So I participated in spirit.  I prayed, meditated and “held the high watch” for those who were out there as well as for our country as a whole.  But I have been uncomfortable with some of large public protests and the way they have been conducted.  I have watched with concern as protestors have been called thugs and accused of everything from inciting violence, to looting, to unprovoked attacks to being rude at town hall meetings.

I have been silent on the tragedy in Charlottesville because I just didn’t know what to say.  I also rarely comment on current events immediately.  I wait for guidance and if it comes then I say something.  Finally guidance came and I am now able to offer these words of hope and encouragement.

So how do we resist evil?

  1.  Choose our actions carefully and wisely.  Getting into a face to face showdown with heavily armed White Nationalists may not be the best thing to do.  Scripture tells us to “abstain from all appearance of evil.” 2Thessalonians 5:22  Most people have likely seen the President’s description of the events in Charlottesville.  That a group of “leftist thugs” attacked a group of “fine, upstanding citizens” who were peacefully protesting (with a permit to do so) the removal of a statue and the renaming of a park.  We do not get involved with anything that can degrade into or even be exaggerated or twisted into being improper, violent or evil.  I am not sure that physical on site protests have accomplished what people are trying to do and in many cases have been used as examples of the “evil intent” of the protestors.
  2. Maybe it time to rethink the word “resist.”  What if resistance isn’t fighting against but living for?  See my blog Fighting Against or Living For?”  
  3. Determine that the world will not change you, that you will not follow the anger and violence of the world but that you will follow Spirit, walk in the light and lead by example.  We can resist by refusing to hate.  We can resist by living in peace.  We can resist by loving.
  4. Create and repeat affirmations.  I am love.  I am peace.  I am creating a world that works for all.  When working with affirmations it is important to put them in positive words, not negative.  I will not, I am not, are not as powerful as I am statements.
  5. Live in the light and walk the path set before you.  People will notice.  Your example may make people think about their actions.  Your example may even change the world.

This is how we do it folks, by living the life of love, peace and light and refusing to be changed by the world around us.

 

How Excellent!

Copyright 2015 by R,.A. Robbins

This morning I was sitting out on the courtesy dock, over the water, meditating at sunrise.  That doesn’t happen all that often anymore.  Even great beauty can begin to be common place when you live with it everyday.  It was cloudy today and there wasn’t the spectacular sunrise seen in today’s photo, but as my meditation ended I still sat there amazed at the creation of God, remembering the wonderful images of the eclipse we watched via livestream from NASA.  There was great emotion coming from people viewing this event — even scientists.

The words of Psalm 18  came to mind.

Psalm 19[a]

For the director of music. A psalm of David.

The heavens declare the glory of God;
    the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;
    night after night they reveal knowledge.
They have no speech, they use no words;
    no sound is heard from them.
Yet their voice[b] goes out into all the earth,
    their words to the ends of the world.
In the heavens God has pitched a tent for the sun.
    It is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,
    like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
It rises at one end of the heavens
    and makes its circuit to the other;
    nothing is deprived of its warmth.

As  I watched the eclipse as it crossed the country yesterday I remembered the excitement I felt the first time I saw a human brain.  I was studying physiological psychology at the time.  Our knowledge of how the brain actually worked was still rather limited back then, but I was amazed at how unimpressive an actual human brain outside of the body can be, knowing that the brain is responsible for everything we do and think, waking as well as sleeping.  Even our breath and heartbeat are controlled by the brain.  In recent years great strides have been made in our understanding of the brain and how it works making it even more amazing that the wonders of human life are controlled by that hunk of gray matter.

When I was in college there was a fear among some Christians that if Christian young people studied science they would become atheists.  There are many scientists around the world who are people of faith — people who still stand amazed at the wonders of nature and by studying them believe in God, Creator, life force, what ever name you use, even more.

So if you stood amazed at the Glory of God yesterday as you watched the eclipse, carry that with you in your heart.  It is easy to get caught up in the trials and tribulations of daily life and forget. Let your heart be softened and changed by this encounter.   Take this memory out from time and time and let your heart sing….

“The heavens declare the Glory of God! “

Thought for Today

Copyright 2016 by R.A. Robbins

“Love is a sacred reserve of energy; it is like the blood of spiritual evolution.” — Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
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