Namaste -Abundance (1.5.12)

Copyright Tam Black 2018
Designed for susanwithpearls.com

Guiding Thought

Choose now to expand your consciousness and open your heart to Divine Love’s flow within you. Realize your own Divine Presence. Know God as the Source and Fulfillment of all your good.

Sharing

“Namaste” (pronounced Nah-mah-stay) is a Sanskrit word that means “I honor you” or “the Divine Presence in me honors the Divine Presence in you”.

Namaste was imported to the United States with other traditional Hindu practices like yoga, chanting, and meditation.

As a white person, born and raised in the United States, I am going to make the claim we don’t get it. White people–or any person–socialized in the superficial, consumer-driven, materialistic United States do not get it.

Namaste, like yoga, chanting, or meditation in India, is part of a multifaceted philosophy, medicine system, culture, spirituality, and way of life. Like so many things appropriated by (predominantly white) people in the United States, the (very deep and traditional) meaning of Namaste (which is accompanied by a feeling deep in the heart) has been sterilized, made into a superficial trend, and been completely disconnected from its essence, its heart, its dynamic-presence lived every day in a culture that is thousands of years old.

We (people born and raised in the United States…) don’t know any better. This is our culture, borne out of centuries of white-European patriarchal imperialism and colonization: seizing and appropriating other cultures is kind of the white-European thing.

And, we can stop. (Yes, we can). The problem with appropriation is not (IMHO) the fact of the appropriation–cultures and societies have integrated, meshed, and blended for as long as there have been people in societies. The problem is with the mind-set of dominance and the accompanying dilution of the culture and the traditions being dominated.

Namaste is the case in point. Americans think Namaste is just a word. But it’s not just a word. It is a feeling of deep respect offered to another. This feeling comes out having self-respect, so that when one says, Namaste (“The Divine in me honors the Divine in you”), the feeling accompanying the word is the sharing of this knowing and understanding of the Divine within. If you can’t feel it, you’re not using the word with its intrinsic depth and meaning.

Cultivate that sense of feeling in your heart, in your mind. Expand your awareness of the Divine within. Connect to your Inner Divine. Then, and only then, say “Namaste”.

 

 

 

 

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:

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