Letter March 25, am

Today, my morning meditation was very calm. Well being abounded.

Yesterday was an amazing day: I got home internet. This is an amazing story. I have been using the hot spot on my phone for internet access, and using library when I wanted to down load something or use a chunk of gigs. The phone works great as far as speed goes, until you get to 20 gigs, when it slows down dramatically. Being home and also signing up for an online class 3 times a week, I was using a gig per hour for the class. Too much. The library is closed.

After worrying about this last week for a day, and not wanting to pay ATT high rates, I looked at Spectrum. Wow they were much cheaper. So I pushed the shop now button. I could even have a self install option. I picked to have the equipment shipped to me because I thought the store would be closed or I couldn\’t get a technician to come to my house.

Then I realized that the local Spectrum store was near where I planned to go running, so I decided to drive by and see if they were open. They were open so I showed them my order and they gave me the equipment. I brought it home but couldn\’t get hooked up because the wire outside weren\’t connected anywhere. But, hey, they scheduled a technician for Tuesday (yesterday). That guy came and quickly connected the wire to where it needed to be. Then the modem would not boot up so he got another out of his truck. Quickly, I had internet. Today, I got an e-mail saying that the equipment I ordered shipped was delayed.  So had I not gone to the Spectrum store and not followed the trail of getting the technician, I\’d still not have internet and probably have to wait until next week or later. I\’d be out of gigs!

Underlying the series of lucky coincidences, a path of least resistance, was my relationship with my Inner Being. I intently work daily and all day with listening to the inner resource, reaching for better feeling thoughts and having a vibration in alignment with my Inner Being and the well being of the universe. I was allowing well being and thus attracting the cooperative components necessary to get what I wanted. It works! Following the teachings on Law of Attraction by Abraham Hicks was my spiritual process. I was following an intuitive trail, small intuitive thought by small intuitive thought.

Without my relationship with my Inner Being, I\’d go around with a bad attitude all the time and hate life. With the relationship, I am guided by intuitive thoughts and everything works out for me. Life if more joyful.

Yesterday was also because my run was amazing. I ran 8 miles, but it was running.It was the first long run since my January injury where I felt like I really was running, not slow jog with walk breaks. Thanks also to the local city who put up \”Play it Safe\” signs indicating that the trails are open but to social distance. I\’m going running again today, thankfully without yesterday\’s rain.

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Still-life with Flowered Cup

I\’ve been trying to live beyond the material world. That is, I want to more deeply experience the feelings of life; not so focused on material things. Let me try to say that again: Before any experience, there was the thoughts and feelings which created a point of attraction. Then, something happens in the material world. Stop looking at what is, is what Abraham would say. Specifically, I am trying to remember unconditional gratitude. That is feeling grateful just for my being, not for any material world things. I want to feel unconditional gratitude and then see what the law of attraction brings.

You see that this is a backward approach, right? Most people list things they are grateful for. I want to list feelings of gratitude, joy appreciation, satisfaction; and then see what the things are. For this exercise, my job at Starbucks is perfect. You never know what will be going on in any day or how you will feel about it. It would be normal for me to spend all day pissed off because I am the lowest of the crew and get stuck with the most menial of positions. But truly, I don\’t want to live my life like that. I chose that job. My working is purposeful. At the moment, I\’m using the job as a tool to access my inner being, or higher consciousness if you will. I really really want to know my higher self and have been engaged in the process of knowing for right on 30 years or more.

So yesterday, I was focused on unconditional gratitude as the shift manager ragged on me all day about do this and do that. I could have felt sorry for myself and hated her. A victory is that I didn\’t feel bad about myself for all that negative attention. I just kept completing each task and doing the job her way. I kept remembering UNCONDITIONAL. I want to feel gratitude unconditionally. I want to feel gratitude even though this shift manager is ragging on me. Unconditional.

Towards the end of the shift, I noticed a box of merchandise which wouldn\’t go out to the public until Tuesday. In the box was a very pretty travel cup (see above). I HAD to have that cup. So pretty! I found out that it would ring up for me, I got my 30% discount, used a gift card to pay, got enough stars for a free reward drink.

I came home and made coffee for my new travel mug. I felt unbounded joy; like somehow, all that gratitude had made a point of attraction for this pretty cup to enter my life. No really. It was a joy to realize that the cup reflected a gift from my inner being; and feel like my inner being loves me. And I felt that much \”bigger\” situations could be handled in exactly the same way. Feeling unbounded joy was the point, because it brought awareness of conscious creation, alignment with Source, the true feeling of my higher self for me.

After my shift, I got off at 11 am, I rested a bit and went to the park to run. It was a warm sunny day, in January no less. Before going to the park, I had a thought, \”Maybe I\’ll see X at the park.\” Then as I pulled into the park, I saw X right in front of where I was parking. Good timing! Another example of conscious creation: the thoughts and feelings came before the reality. I did that!

I am learning that life is more about playing than serious survival needs. I want to be alive in this life; not just hope it ends soon. Really, my life has not really been consciously fun. Mostly, I\’ve been trying to survive; not happy on the inside at all. Now that I know that happiness is my choice, I\’ve been making that choice. I\’d rather feel unconditionally happy; and I can if I deliberately do it. that is the key: deliberately.

Riding the Rocket

A story of positive momentum.
The Law of Attraction: that which is like unto itself is drawn

It was a Saturday morning. I was sitting on the stool in a nice hotel room in Dallas. I think about what is about to occur: an Abraham workshop, and my heart suddenly goes crazy; thumping madly as if for a job interview. Maybe it is. I have expectations for the day: will I get called on? Will I experience tremendous emotions? Or not?

I calm down, take my bag out to the car and go reserve my seat in the workshop. The seminar is at 9. The room opened at 7. I got in line at 6:50. There were a few early birds who got there before me. I did get a front row seat. It should tell you something that people strive to get front row seats. It is not like church or school or seminars where no one wants the front row. I want to be as close as possible to see Abraham; and if I get called on, it will be easy for me to walk up.

Having now 2 hours before the show would begin, I walk into the Galleria mall to Starbucks. I use my new partner card for the first time. It worked! I am in the computer. I bought a latte and a protein box for 30% off.

What brings me to this room is a decades long desire to know my higher self. I was introduced to Abraham a little over a year ago and those teachings really improved my love for myself, trust and confidence in my self, ability to dream a creative and fun future. After many many YouTube videos, I am now going to see in person.

The room began to fill. We are in a huge hotel ball room and I guess at least 500 chairs. The room is filled with high energy. We all watch the countdown clock on the screen. The room explodes as Esther (Abraham) comes out. The workshop consists of a brief opening by Abraham and then conversations between Abraham and participants. We have all watched many videos, some for more than a decade. Some of these people have been to many Abraham workshops, but also, many of us are first timers.

What Abraham says is a help to deliberate creation of a life experience. The whole teaching is on how to use the Law of Attraction. Most people think that the Law of Attraction is for those greedy people who want to be wealthy (so?). However, today\’s workshop focuses more on the thoughts which are the manifestation, not the things. That is because things only interest us for a little, while the journey of creation is very fascinating.

My experience is shaded by the me I brought to the workshop. Habitual feelings of being less attractive than others, as well as my habitual trashing of experiences not being good enough, color my ability to have joyful experiences and fully receive what is given by the Universe. And so, I just start from where I am and work up the positive scale.

The day is only 4 hours of conversations with Abraham. I pick up on several phrases: ease and flow; satisfaction; make satisfaction my practiced vibration; be under the influence of my higher self; joyful expansion; joyful journey; joyful purpose; don\’t be so serious; savor the birthing; its about thoughts turning, not so much the things.

Of course, this blog can\’t reproduce this experience. I can share my feelings. During the workshop, my thoughts kept going over the idea that I am riding a rocket into the Universe, a creative world which is now my life. My higher self just kept saying this over and over: you are riding the rocket, just stay aboard. I struggle to stay on the rocket. Listening to Abraham, I felt a moment of knowing what ecstasy is, and that some part of me lives in ecstasy. I can allow this. This feeling was a knowing of something I carry inside; not an emotional dopamine hit, which the human me always wants. See what a dichotomy that is: human me wants euphoria before it will believe; while deliberate creating me generates the knowing of a world greater than the human world and true ecstasy is there.

Driving home, I realize the both / and of my personality. There is the habitual negative self punishment: I didn\’t get called on so I must have done it wrong. There is the continual positive thoughts: I am on my journey, supported by Spirit, moving forward creatively. Just keep riding the rocket. Enjoy. I am a joyful manifestation.

Now, the morning after, I realize that I have received a subtle energy shift. There wasn\’t a huge dopamine reward. The human part of me wants to trash me because of that. More quiet is the knowing of an improved vibration. Soon after getting up, I know that I\’m not quitting my quest for growth and expansion; to make something of my life, to actually live it. I realize that how I feel right at this instant is a choice: I can choose to trash my experience; or mine the gems, remember the gems, receive what my higher self had to give me. As I choose the positive aspects, I feel better. Feeling better is what we want. Positive momentum. I did and am now generating positive momentum.

I am grateful to Abraham. The whole room was grateful to Abraham. We are all living at higher energy than before meeting Abraham. We all feel better about ourselves because of Abraham.

Personal Mount Blanc

It is Labor Day in the US. I still had to run outside to put out the garbage since I heard the truck. The waste company has put several people out of work since they went to automated trucks.

I have time to sit and reflect. I read the blogs about the Catholic Church sex scandal, The Benedict Option. I watch YouTube videos of Ultra Trail Mount Blanc (below) and tears come to my eyes. I think of my own situation.

I am on the cusp of quitting my career. I wanted to retire before my body got too old so that I could go in lots of races. As I sit here now, one of my knees is somehow in trouble; so I won\’t hit the ground running.

The thought crosses my mind as I look at the faces of the three women winners of UTMB (video below), \”I want to be who I really am.\” This thought also brings an important point to the surface. I am quitting my career, not just because I have the money, but because I was caught in fake me.

Real me is an athlete and scholar; and has been allotted an hour or two of living each day for my career. Real me is incredibly smart, creative and peruses the metaphysical universe seeing the energy connections of life itself. Real me runs miles and lifts weights. The fake me shoves itself into a corporate box and uses the intelligence to out perform inferior colleagues, please under-functioning bosses and make money. The real me is bored with an engineering job which became rote a couple of years ago, and frustrated with the niche of expertise. The fake me continues to wish for some sort of corporate recognition; which will never come because thats not what corporations do. Fake versus Real is an emotional conflict which I am allowing Real to win. I want to be authentic.

Now, facing retirement, the real me is eager for more time to write, to work on web pages, to learn the business end of being a professional writer, having a personal brand. No one can stop me.

I, and we all, have an inner spirit, a real me, that refuses to be boxed. For the first time in my life, I have the finances to give the real me both space and time. I realize a transformation will occur. Even I, who knows that inner energy, don\’t really know what will happen.

I have my own version of Mount Blanc. I\’ve been climbing for years. Sometime soon, the next few years, I\’ll reach the finish line. And then go on.

I will keep the agreement with my inner spirit. I\’m leaving the ordinary world and stepping into the extraordinary. Yes I can.

Quiet and Wet

This weekend, there is no excitement with racing. I am quietly doing miles. Owing to a stationary low pressure, Houston has been drenched all week and it continues to rain.

This morning, I thought about the treadmill. But, nah! It wasn\’t raining that hard and was pretty warm. So I went outside for my run. I ran pretty fast for 7 miles. It surprised me how fast.

Then I went out again in the afternoon. I was taking it easy by walking and jogging on a path by a lake. I went there to be near water. It did rain some more. For awhile it was very light, but finally a downpour with wind so I stopped as I was getting cold and not having fun. 14 miles total today.

This evening I did a strength workout of 34 minutes. Now my shoulders are quivering. I did this workout while listening to Garrison Keeler on A Prairie Home Companion. He was cracking jokes about his seizure earlier this week. He will retire in July. I will miss his shows.

I am reading a book written before 1900. Maybe more like 1800. It is upstairs so I don\’t have it in front of me. I love the detailed writing style.

Today I downloaded a voice recording app to my ipad. And I recorded my own voice reading a meditation. I think it will work very well to go deeper into Mind. Last weekend, when I was in the zone, I learned about my inner self. This weekend in my running and meditating and silence, I am learning about my inner self also. What I know about my inner self is it\’s drive. It has an urgent need to push forward.

Tomorrow, there will be more miles.

Triple Marathon – the inner and the outer runner

This discussion is not a tweet. Are you able to read serious stuff and ponder? Not many people do now-a-days. It is difficult for me to focus long enough to write out my thoughts in enough detail for someone else to enjoy them.

Lots of ideas and factors went in to this 3 day journey, ending in some new understanding of myself and my higher consciousness.

Paul Brunton (philosopher) once wrote, \”Every word has therefore two meanings: the external meaning, which is the objective fact or event in external experience, and the internal meaning, which is the idea of that fact or event which is formed in the mind.\”

This is a race report, but I\’d like to focus on the internal meaning, what is in my mind. I\’d like to focus on content vs form. I\’m not alive on this planet to brag about how I ran 3 marathons in three days. I\’m here for some spiritual activity; and everything I experience is for that activity. Don\’t dumb down the purpose of human life.

Sri Chinmoy taught about the inner runner and the outer runner.  Here The outer runner is what I appear to be doing: suffering through 26 hot miles, 3 days in a row. The inner runner is how I am pushing the spiritual purpose of my life forward.

Paul Brunton said in another place, \”The goal towards which man is slowly travelling by successive steps is a threefold one: the fully developed environment, the fully developed intelligence, and the realized soul. The last is the best and the other two are servants of it, for he comes first to a comprehension and then to a realization of himself. \”\”The purpose of gathering experience (the evolutionary process) is precisely to bring such an awareness (of the realized soul).\” I am wanting to express how three days of marathoning is an experience gathering activity.

For everyone, their first marathon is amazing. For me, finishing any marathon is also a journey. Every marathon has its learnings. I\’ve now done 61 of them.

Besides Brunton and Sri Chinmoy, there is something my energy practitioner said the last time we talked. I have talked to her about my continual frustration with enlightenment. I\’m frustrated because I haven\’t had that peak experience that so many spiritual teachers write about in their books; even though I\’ve tried all the methodologies (short of drugs or traumatic brain injury). She discussed with me that realization of my inner essential being (realization of my soul), my quest for consciousness, is in itself The Thing. My Higher Self is The Quest Itself. This 3 day marathon journey was exactly that.

In a 3 day marathon, there is some aspect of my quest for consciousness. I want to discover That.

How difficult it is for me to pause and really dissect the inner experience. I have feelings which are hard to put into words.

Form: I completed 3 marathons in 3 days. The first took 5:59. The second took 5:54. The third took 5:27. These times are my garmin times and do not contain pit stops. They were all on the same course. Okay, done.

Content:

The inner experience is about how hard it was to get to the start of day number 3. Wow, that is the gist of it. Enlightenment is about pushing past the ego\’s shrieks, complaints and barriers. That takes some kind of spiritual effort.

I\’ve been a life long runner. In 2005 or so, I learned about the Sri Chinmoy 3,100 Mile Race. In reading about this race, I learned about the self transcendence aspects of distance running. I tried to enact that possibility. Time and distance are involved; but not necessarily entertainment. Many laps are run. Laps are boring. Laps are perfect place to turn inward and listen. This 3 day marathon was on a 3 mile loop. It was a place to turn inward and listen.

In February of this year, I completed a double marathon. This made it possible to believe my dream of going on a Mainly Marathon vacation could come true. So I signed up for the Texas Threesome as a step along the way.

In the days prior to this race, I could hear my ego grumbling. I live in Houston where the main topic of conversation is traffic. My ego was grumbling about traffic on the trip home from Dallas and traffic around Houston if I left later in the day. This grumbling was bad. It was forcing me to think that maybe I would skip the third day of the race and drive home inthe middle of the night when there wouldn\’t be any traffic. This is the first ego barrier I had to overcome. I call it an ego barrier meaning it is something I have to spiritually get through in order to achieve conscious awareness of my soul.

Second problem was my ego questioning why I needed to do a third day at all. I mean, if two days are successful, shouldn\’t I skip the third day and not hurt my body? After all, I am signed up for a triple in July, why not wait until then? Why risk injury now? These fears are another ego barrier. They suggest a lack of understanding about what is going on metaphysically: ie. I hadn\’t had the experience yet so I didn\’t know what it was for. I have a habit of quitting difficulties based on my ego\’s yelling at me. I had to solve this problem spiritually as well.

There were other minor issues like not having enough vacation time at work but needing a day off prior to this adventure to sleep. There is the malaise which occupies every ego. It takes energy to get it out of a rut and go do something.

Day 1

I got my packet on Friday evening. At packet pickup I spoke with a woman who is older than me who finished a 300 mile race over 10 days. She got 5 stress fractures but finished the race even with the severe pain. Ever since, she has had various physical problems. But she mentioned to me she wants to go back to the 300 mile race because it was such an inspirational experience for her. At this event now, she hadn\’t been able to train, but still walked 5 hours on 2 days to finish 2 half marathons. I have to honor the inner runner, that deep desire this woman displayed.

These races begin at 5 am. It was warm and humid (even though I wasn\’t in Houston!). I planned to do all the races with 3 minutes run/2 minutes walk. The first day I spent most of the time with a cancer survivor who was finishing his 100th marathon. The survivor part is a new American idolatry; and yes, I buy into it and see the inner runner in it. But as he continued his story I became less impressed. There is some opioid use. It became clear that he had no regular workout routine other than walking marathons. He was killing his inner runner. Finally about mile 17, as I was jogging very slow and listening to his breathing, I blurted out that I thought he should talk to his doctor about that. He was gasping when I was not even near winded. I mean slow jogging for 3 minutes. After that he quit tagging along with me. After he left me, I did speed up some. This makes me wonder if he hadn\’t been sucking my energy.

But, I finished in my goal time of 6:03 by the course clock which includes the pit stops. All in all, a satisfactory day.

Day 2

Again we are there at 5 am. Lightening in the distance. The race director mentions that we should seek cover if the storm gets close. I don\’t know any runner which would make the right choice without being told. But, the storm didn\’t get very close and the rain didn\’t get hardly more than a sprinkle. I ran mostly alone until about 17 miles. Then my friend Mathew suddenly showed up. I was so happy to see him I tried to hug his sweaty body. Mathew is a 73 year old Indian. I don\’t know much about him but I enjoy talking to him during races.

It became hot again towards the end of the race. But even so, I had an inkling. I knew at the end of day 2 that I would be back. Despite all my ego\’s desire to just high tail it back to Houston in the middle of the night and not finish day 3; I knew. Very quiet was that knowing. I finished in 6:01 by the course clock which includes pit stops.

I went back to my hotel room. I realized that I had just finished 2 marathons without any real physical problems. That, in and of itself is amazing. I had no excuse about tomorrow. If I didn\’t do it, I\’d have to make up something to tell others.

I sat there with my Paul Brunton book and tried to listen. I got some intuitive thoughts.

The first thing was to just pretend I am doing a third marathon, but not really commit. So I repaired my tape jobs, rubbed my legs with muscle rub, got my things organized.

Then came a truly monumental thought. \”Why don\’t you let go? Why don\’t you let the universe worry about Houston traffic?\” OMG! Why don\’t I? The inner experience is about the decision to let some higher consciousness worry about traffic during the drive home. It turns out, I drove home in record time. Many drivers seemed to think 87 mph was a good speed. (more about letting go below)

Next there was another mind altering thought. How would you feel about yourself as you drove past the race site on your way out of town. Wouldn\’t your ego immediately attack you with tons of thoughts about how stupid you are and what are you going to say to others? The mind altering thought was a decision.. A decision that a DNF (did not finish) would be better than a DNS (did not start). Check out the picture of the shirt I got at an emotional race 3 years ago. My honor was involved. My honor is totally about the inner essence of me, my quest for my higher consciousness. I actually didn\’t have the energy to make excuses for my sorry self. It would be much easier to run a marathon.

Day 3

Again it is warm and humid with thunder storms around. As I started the race, I realized than nothing hurt. I had no pains of any kind. So, I took off the brakes and began really running. I mean what the heck, its the last day. I kept to the 3x2s, but during the run, I was really running. I felt great! I was making great time.

As I was getting to mile 20, I thought, \”You can\’t tell me I\’m not an athlete.\” What an athlete, 3 days of marathons and still strong! I was in the zone. I never know how or when I\’ll get in the zone. But when it happens, I fly with no effort at all. I finished in 5:33 by the course clock which includes pit stops.

I had solved my ego problems with spiritual solutions. First, to let go and let something higher be in control of everything. Second to honor my integrity. These decisions tell me about my higher self. They tell me the truth of my being.

Day 3 finisher picture taken with a sweaty cell phone.

The inner experience is about how I feel now: sort of special? Awed at myself. Dis-belief that I ran so well on day 3. How maybe the three days was like being pushed through a birth canal. I was reborn. It is not that I prayed and the universe did what I wanted. It is that I let go of trying to control so I lived in harmony. The miracle was that I ended up at the starting line on the third day only to discover that I was filled with positive energy. I got to the starting line, not by self will, but by letting go. Then I felt guided all day. This is not about God but about a higher consciousness. The quest is about discovering essence not about defining God. So in letting go, I allowed higher consciousness.

Lesson 140 – Self Respect

Bits of the ACIM text:

Let my interfering thoughts be laid aside.
Be still and listen to the truth.
My mind holds only what I think with God.

Now 2 days after my ultra run and I want to go running, but one toe is still painful. Rats!

Brunton says, \”Even if a man fails to win at business, he will grandly win his own self respect.\” That is the person who practices spiritual principles. That helps me because I just realized, I can\’t like myself just as I am. I mean, I don\’t have the ability. My ego is just too petty. Sadly I have no inner self respect. I continually measure myself against others. People pleasing is all I have. Despite years of personal inventory, I\’ve not so clearly realized this.

As soon as I got out of bed this morning, I had to work on my toe. The blister is not infected but it is still a raw hunk of flesh. Now I will shamble over to my elliptical and gently work out.

As I did my elliptical, I though about my small self who is my worldly consciousness; and that elusive Higher Self, not ordinary consciousness. I thought about a line in a book: he is like a person who has lost his legs. He never grows new ones. I thought about how some parents give their children an innate sense of self worth.

When it comes to self worth, I was never given it and won\’t grow it either.  In the world, I am successful, but never feel it as an innate sense, only if a dopamine reward went with it. No wonder I find relations with other people so frightening. I\’m so dependent on their reactions.

As I rode my elliptical, I was glad for this realization. It also led to another realization. Now that I know I have no self respect, I can peacefully go on with life. Psychotherapists try to coach their patients into building self esteem. I say, forget it. Just go on. Oh gee, I don\’t have legs. Well, just go on. I\’m screwed. Oh, ok, fine. Just go on.

On the other hand, it is evidence of a Higher Self, or I\’d not be able to say, Just go on.

Glimpses

It is hot in Texas. Usually, along the coast, we get some cloudiness which keeps the temperature down; but not now. The sky is an unrelenting blue.

I made it out of bed early and got to the trails at 6:30. Fast forward 1 1/2 hours.

I was jogging along in mantra mode, keeping my ego at bay. I was watching the stead drip of sweat off the front brim of my running hat. I was listening mostly to tractors and dump trucks. I saw a few white sea birds in the empty bayou. The shade of the forest was nice.

Mantra mode got me to where I needed to be mentally. I spent the first bit of time rationally going over the difference between ego and higher self. I kept up the mental changing of channels and looking at attachments and approval addictions. I went back to the mantra. The convent…. flick…. Pittsburgh … flick …. running…. flick …. Texas…..

Then I got the glimpse. Finally, the tractors and dump trucks were a distraction from the ever present peace of the forest. The turmoil was just a drop in the ocean which goes unnoticed by the ocean. This was the glimpse of the ever present peace, the ever present benign happiness which exists.

Though it was hot, I wished I had more drink so I could run laps in the forest longer. I only got 2.5 hours.  Then I headed home for a quick turn around and went to a fellowship meeting. I got my groceries and my gas. I\’ve made my peanut butter and lunch was a bowl of vegetables.

More jogging tomorrow. I\’ll bring more drink.