Dicrysahe -Healing (1.4.22)

Copyright Tam Black 2018
Designed for susanwithpearls.com
Guiding Thought

We go deep within our inner stillness, and feel Divine Mind’s presence within. We hold out our empty hands, symbolic of leaving preconceptions behind; symbolic of seeking True answers, and ask, “What is the essence of healing?” These words resonate within us, as though in a vast cavern.  The word essence reverberates with these thoughts, “For what do we care most deeply?”; “What is our  essence?”; “What is our Truth?”; “Where is our deepest hurt, pain, and sorrow, that all may be healed?”

Reflection

Mantras are most powerful when energetically spoken silently within your Diamond Crystal Sacred Heart. ~Joseph Barry Martin

Meditation teachers generally say there are three ways to repeat mantras:

  1. Out loud (known as Vaikhari Japa). This way accustoms a person to the pronunciation and tones, and serves to calm the mind. In this method, the sound becomes externalized. For many people, especially beginners, this makes it easier to focus on the sound and its energy.
  2. Whispered inaudibly, with the breath merely passing over the lips (known as Upamsu Japa). The sound remains internal, yet the brain and body are engaged in the motion of making words. This requires a bit more concentration and focus, since there is no actual sound to bring the brain back when it starts to wander. The mind must be responsible for the brain, and keep it focused.
  3. Silently (known as Manasika Japa). This is generally understood as a mental practice; the mantra is simply repeated silently, which is said to require much focus, attention, and concentration.

Please note that this summary is not advocating that one way is “more powerful” than another way. You will find writings that say the first is most powerful, and the third the least powerful (as in the Chaitanya Bhagavata story, which says Vaikhari is 100 times superior to Manasika), and you will find writings that say Manasika is more powerful than Vaikhari (as in the Hari-bhakti-vilasa). I suggest you try them for yourself, and see what works for you, depending on your own goals and intentions. (Also, another form of japa that is not relevant here, but worth mentioning is Likhita Japa. This is when a person writes a mantra repeatedly.)

I have tried all three.  Personally, I like Manasika Japa the best. When I am doing japa, I focus my attention between my eyebrows, where I hold a picture of the energetic representation of the mantra. So, for example, if I am doing Om Namah Shivaya japa, I hold a picture of either Shiva or Babaji at my forehead; if I am doing Om hang Hanumate Rudratmakaye hung phat mantra, I have a picture of Hanuman in my imagination between my eyebrows.

This morning, I was reading a book by Joseph Barry Martin and came across the quote at the top. Today, while doing my japa, I changed my style. Instead of using my mind/brain to imagine an energetic representation while focusing on the words, I moved my focus to my heart area and concentrated on “hearing” the energy through my heart.

It was intense. I would like to officially add a fourth method of doing japa. I call it Dicrysahe- Diamond Crystal Sacred Heart 😉  -and it means feeling the energy of the words through the heart.

Why does this matter for the Journey today?

  1. Because when doing japa via Dicrysahe, I found there to be this resonance (as though in a vast cavern). It felt literally like a magnified pulse emanating from my chest.
  2. It felt like it was a very direct experience of the sound, without the sound. After all, sound is simply vibration; if I can feel the vibration in my body instead of hearing it, it’s the same energy but a different experience of it–visceral and without a brain-interpretation.
  3. I felt like I had a new grasp of my inner stillness, and could feel Divine Mind’s presence within. I admit, I have a hard time with stillness (until now…). Stillness, traditionally means something like “calming the monkey mind”. In order to get to stillness, one must pass through the mind, which is always in chaos–that’s why there’s meditation–to calm the mind and get to stillness. But Dicrysahe completely bypasses the mind. Instead of having a battle in the brain between what to focus on (the chaotic thoughts, or the calming ones), Dicrysahe changes fields, where no battle exists, because there is no mind, because everything happens in the heart.
  4. When I did the Guiding Thought with Dicrysahethere was a similar more direct experience of the Guiding Thought. It was more difficult than with a mantra, because with a mantra there is repetition of sound and syllables, and with the Guiding Thought I really had to focus on the energy, rather than the words. But it felt solid and pervading.

This is all new. Pretty cool, huh? Try it. Let me know what you think.

 

 

Gratitude for- Healing (1.4.2)

Copyright Tam Black 2018
Designed for susanwithpearls.com
Guiding Thought

I go deep within my inner stillness, and feel Divine Mind’s presence within me. I hold out my empty hands, symbolic of leaving preconceptions behind, symbolic of seeking True answers, and I ask, “What is the essence of healing?” These words resonate within me, as though in a vast cavern.  The word essence reverberates with these thoughts, “For what do I care most deeply?”; “What is my own essence?”; “What is my Truth?”; “Where is my deepest hurt, my pain, my sorrow, that all may be healed?”

Reflection

May I begin by saying that I am so very grateful to be doing this Journey of Healing at this time. It feels so right.

First, in not defining what I want to heal, or what I want to focus on, I’ve opened myself to allow (it seems) miscellaneous stuff that needs to be released. I’ve been having a lot of thoughts about my childhood, and it seems I am working through some alone-ness, some “ignored”, and some “not-heard” issues.

Second, I’ve given myself permission to make healing the #1 priority in my life. Nothing else is important to do. What is most important is to do my healing practices, which include but are not limited to, this Journey. This is not to say I am not doing other things–I am still working, doing my household chores, taking care of my family, but the perspective is that of first making the healing practices a priority.  I feel almost like I have established (or at am working at establishing) the energy of a “retreat” within my daily schedule. If you’ve been on a retreat, call to mind how it felt to have the time and space every day to breathe into your Self. That’s it.

Third, just a note about the healing practices I mentioned above: I have committed to doing earth, air, water, fire, and mind every day for this Journey. These are my standard practices, but I do not always do all of them every day. So for this Journey, the schedule is: First thing in the morning bathe and breathe (water, air). Then a fire ceremony before 10 am (fire). Some time later, exercise for at least 30 minutes (earth). And at some point during the day, do the Journey, and mantra/japa (mind). This is how I have created a retreat-like atmosphere for myself–it does not matter what else I do, as long as these things get done.

Finally, for many years, I have understood that when I am working with spiritual energies, and spiritual practices, there are often things that I “learn” that are not conscious, and not a product of what I think I am intending. I’ve learned that much of the time, I need to simply listen to the energy or the practice; it has more to teach me without words and in silence, if only I pay attention. This is especially true of fire. I have learned to silently say to It (whatever the practice at hand is), “Tell me of You”. Then I listen with my body, so to speak. I feel the movement within, the energy, the flow. This is not always something that I even have to focus on, or be intense about. Just asking asking for It to “tell me”, is enough for It to teach me at very subtle levels. Especially with yesterday’s and today’s Guiding Thoughts, I am feeling this especially.

Love to you. Happy Healing. Be well. I am glad you are here.

Wheeee! Roller Coaster Ride– Worth (1.3.28)

Copyright Tam Black 2018
Designed for susanwithpearls.com

Guiding Thought

We are worth the effort it requires to move our minds to Love. We are worth the time of waiting, in patience, for Knowing to arrive. Every moment, every second that we open to simply being willing for Love to enter is a moment offered to Eternity; a moment offered to healing, a moment offered to Unity.

Love simply settles slowly, quietly, gently, beyond sense-perception. So we must wait in patience and take the effort to move our minds to join the quiet stillness of Love. Here we rest. Here is Peace. Here is all we want and need.

Reflection

I affirm: I am willing for Love to enter. I wait in patience. I move my mind to join the quiet stillness of Love.

The past four weeks have felt like an emotional roller coaster. Seriously. In all of the Journeys I’ve done, I’ve had ups and downs, but those were like a gentle roller coaster, with just a single track.

This Journey it’s been sharper, more frequent ups and downs, happening on several different levels and in a variety of areas.

Good thing I like roller coasters.

I’ve been reminding myself of different times in my life when I’ve experienced personal struggle, how I dealt with it (much of what I write about here), and how everything turned out fine.

I’ve been reminding myself that God always takes care of me–and everything works out really fine, as in ways that I would never be able to orchestrate, if I were figuring it out. And, that when I have tried to figure it out, I’ve been disappointed. Letting God do it is really the way to go. You would think I would not have to remind myself of this at this point… but, well, see the post a few days ago.

What is really humorous to me, is that this “struggle” isn’t even a struggle. It’s my mind playing tricks on me, and me buying into them. I’ve got so much going on that is exactly what the sages and gurus tell us happens in our minds, which things like meditation and spiritual practices help to tone down: my mind is full of chatter; it is telling me things that I know “aren’t real”; I’m “seeing” illusion; I’m feeling things that have absolutely no basis in either reality or my experience (even in the illusion). And yet, I’ve been buying into all of this to varying degrees. Thus the roller coaster.

This is humorous, because I can see it. I see exactly the tricks that my mind is playing with me, but I still buy into them. What is up with that?

I have reinvigorated some more of my mind-practices–japa mainly. I had slacked off of this when I began doing more fire ceremonies, and different daily prayers. And what’s funny about this is that I wrote about this very thing at the end of the last Journey.

The more I do these Journeys, the more they flow into each other, the more there are connections between them and within them.

Maybe the current roller coaster is because I’ve reached a point where I can deal with the convergence of more aspects, more layers, more dimensions of my being. But because this is a new point, and I’ve never actually dealt with this many aspects, layers, and dimensions of my being, it’s a bit of a challenge.

I’m going to go with that. And enjoy the ride.

New Themes– Worth (1.3.24)

Copyright Tam Black 2018
Designed for susanwithpearls.com

Guiding Thought

Our worth is inestimable, beyond compare!

We always know we have everything to give—thus, we may always give freely! We know our worth and we give it; we give it freely, and Know in the giving!

As we give, we learn, allowing Joy and Peace to lead and to guide us. We follow willingly for we know: Where there is Joy and Peace, there is Love; where there is Love, we are; where we are, we are giving our inestimable worth.

Reflection

Quick update: The panic is over again. It’s just weird to me that this cycle–in and out of panic–has gone on this long. I continue to do mantra, prayer, and fire ceremonies, which always move me out of it and/or help maintain balance and calm. Onward!

Themes for this Journey so far: Change/transformation and connection.

I’m going to add a third and fourth theme too: forgetting/remembering and holding on/release.

Holding on/release: I am adding this because when there is change and transformation, there is an inherent letting go of something in order for it to transform into something else. I am going to keep this in mind for the rest of the Journey, because–especially with my panic episodes–I have to look at, or be aware of, what I am holding onto, and not wanting to give up. Why am I afraid? Why am I afraid of letting go? What do I cling to?

Forgetting/remembering: I am adding this because as I was reading the Guiding Thought today, it came up for me for the second time today. Though this has been a minor theme so far (see days 1, 11, 21), I am going to bring it greater awareness for the rest of the Journey. It seems like since day 21, my sensitivity to the gap between remembering and forgetting has increased. What I mean by that is I feel more of a tug at my consciousness that says, “you know this, you just need to remember“. In other words, I am more aware of my forgetting, which is pointing me toward remembering.

I was walking, listening to birds, feeling the breeze, watching the trees, and I thought, “I am part of this. I am connected to all of this. I know I am…why don’t I feel it more? What do I need to do to feel it more”. It’s like remembering a memory, without the details, “I know this happened… but what exactly happened”?

So I am keeping on. More to do, more to learn, more to remember, more expansion, more growth, more love, more light, more life.

Love to you. I hope your Journey is going well. Thank you for being here, supporting this Journey with your energy. We’re all in this together.

Peace, peace, peace.

The Middle Prayer: Journey of Peace 2017– Day 39

Copyright Tam Black 2017
for susanwithpearls

Guiding Thought

The purpose of Life for all beings is to experience happiness, peace, contentment, and safety, Knowing the Oneness and Immortality of the Divine Self. Such Knowledge is beyond speech, beyond thought; it is found in the depths of the heart where communion (co-union) with All is reality. I bring the unifying force within my heart to all people and experiences and thus Know myself as the happiness, peace, contentment, and safety I Am.

Reflection

More and more I’ve been pausing throughout my day to “bring the unifying force within my heart to all people and experiences”. I haven’t even been thinking about the Journey. I just want to do it. (you can see a couple of my recent prayers here and here.)

“Anytime, anywhere” is what I thought about this today. There is no place inappropriate to ask the Divine into the heart. There is no time that is inappropriate (At first I had to get over myself on this particular issue. The first time I was on the toilet and the prayer came up into my mind, I thought… “I can’t do this here“. But I got over it. There is no place God isn’t. Even the toilet. So if you can bring yourself to say a prayer while in the bathroom…you have an understanding beyond “shoulds” and “shouldn’ts” about a relationship with God, congratulations!).

Wanting to pray throughout the day is quite new for me. I have done formal (Russian Orthodox) morning and evening prayers. I do mantra. I say the Our Father and the Hail Mary. I used to “just talk” to God as prayer. I lost that when I was still young, maybe around age 16. Formal prayers became the substitute.

I love formal prayers. I love the assurance of knowing that these prayers have been used for millenia by lots of people who want to communicate with God. It’s as though someone else has figured something out, and all I have to do is say the words to reap the benefits. I can relax; I don’t have to think about (as, of course, I would) if I am “doing it right”. Formal prayers have already been tested and approved.

“Just talking” to God is murkier for me. I want to communicate clearly–all the time, but especially when I am talking to God. When I “just talk” I seem to get lost in my thoughts and the talk turns to distracted musing, wondering, or worry.

The prayers that I now do are kind of an in-between. I use a semi-formal structure (see the links above), then through that structure I invoke and/or ask for Light, Love, Healing, Peace, etc., using my own words, whatever comes to mind, whatever the situation happens to be.

The bridge that helped me find this in between spot–not formal prayer, yet not distracted musing–was the idea that before every prayer, I simply invoke my Christ Presence, the Holy Spirit, my I Am Presence, my Divine Self–whatever you choose to call It, It is that Presence that mediates between your personality and the Divine. With this invocation, every word of the prayer becomes filtered through this Presence, so I can’t “do it wrong” and every word is purified before it reaches God’s ear, so God understands what I mean, even if it’s not what I am saying or if it’s gibberish.

The Holy Spirit/I Am Presence listens to my heart, to my deepest self, and offers that to God on my behalf. Can you see now why I “just want” to pray throughout the day?

Evolution, Cartoons, and Purpose

Will the real Jacknife please stand up- Crop

 

In 1998 I was a truck driver–over the road, 18 wheels, 48 states and Canada. I started a cartoon series called, “Journeys with Jacknife”, the Yoga-practicin’, Mantra-chantin’, Green tea-drinkin’ Truck Driver”. The series was about finding the Divine in the mundane, and/or bringing the Divine into daily life.

Do you see? I was doing then what I am doing now. Pretty much, anyway: a Journey consciously undertaken as an understanding of a personal connection with the Divine.

That was almost 20 years ago. It reminds me of lyrics from the Indigo Girls song, Watershed:

“When you’re learning to face the path at your pace
Every choice is worth your while.
Well there’s always retrospect to light a clearer path
Every five years or so I look back on my life
And I have a good laugh.
You start at the top, go full circle round
Catch a breeze, take a spill
But ending up where i started again makes me wanna stand still. (emphasis mine)

Clearly, I haven’t stood still. As my life has evolved, my understanding and expression of the journey has evolved too. And, I have definitely been learning to face the path at my pace. I have always been more of a turtle than a hare, and even so, I’ve taken my share of spills.

I went through several phases of wanting something quickly, to sprint for the finish-line, to be the hare rather than the turtle. But I found that method full of anxiety and stress. I was always thinking about what I needed to do to get it now, and if I didn’t what was wrong, and how to figure it out and fix it, and why it wasn’t happening exactly how I want it to, and as fast as I wanted it to?

Now, I just acknowledge the journey, and enjoy it so much more. This, right now, is the journey.

What is the journey? The journey is bringing the divine into daily life through you, as you. That is the ultimate journey for all of us. Finding and being more love, more light, more connected. Every moment is this journey, and the great thing is, it does not matter what you are actually doing, whether it’s driving a truck, being an administrator, or being a monk…or anything else.

I am finding this retrospective very timely, as we move into Journey of Purpose. I sometimes worry about the whole “standing still” thing, and ask, “What am I doing? How far have I come? Where am I going? Who am I supposed to be, what am I supposed to do?” And each time these questions come up, my answer to myself is always, “Seek first the Kingdom of Heaven”–or, in other words, seek the Divine within, express love in your life. This is how my life grows. This is how I evolve. This is how the journey unfolds. This is the purpose.

For your entertainment, I here submit the very first Journies [sic] with Jacknife:

Journies with jacknife - for Article_Page_1

Journies with jacknife - for Article_Page_2

Journies with jacknife - for Article_Page_3