Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Simple Tools

We had a good discussion in the book group meeting I attend on Monday night. We each discussed some of our favorites off of David Hawkins 10 Simple Tools list (see list below). The idea is basically to pick one of these tools that resonates with you and apply it in your everyday life for a period of time and enjoy the results. In my last email I mentioned applying acceptance and the importance of that. Number 5 in the list below is basically the same concept because it involves forgiving everything that is witnessed.

I got to use a couple of them today while spending a brief while outside enjoying a beautiful Spring day. I was listening birds sing as well as the heavy earth moving equipment going back and forth on the mountain behind our house. Then rumble of the engine was easy enough to overlook but it was combined with periodic beeping noises when the equipment began backing up.

In order to come to terms with the constant beeping noise and the peace it had the potential to disturb if I allowed it to, I decided to find the beauty in the noise (number 4 below). It was not hard at all. All I had to do was imagine how many lives were lost in construction related accidents from people being backed over by drivers who could not see them. Once I began to appreciate how many lives have been spared as a result of this simple invention, I began to really appreciate and accept the noise as a wonderful thing.

Once I came in and looked at the daily quote from the Dalai Lama, I saw how appropriate it all was. “To deepen your gratitude toward all people, it is helpful to reflect on the unintended kindness of those who provide goods and services without necessarily knowing the names or faces of those whom they serve. In this life there are so many facilities we enjoy–nice buildings, roads, and so forth–that are produced by other people.”

I have become quite proficient at seeing the good in people and can easily think of the positive things that can result from disastrous events, which makes everything easier to accept. The tools below are great and you might end up using one or more of them as the situation determines. They really drive home the importance of the unconditionalness required to find true peace within yourself. I hope you enjoy.
Take care,
PS - If you catch yourself judging someone or something harshly, look for something to be grateful for so that you can fully accept it. Then be grateful for the opportunity to live up to your life’s challenge.

1. Be kind to everything and everyone, including oneself, all the time, with no exception.

2. Revere all of life in all its expressions, no matter what, even if one does not understand it.

3. Presume no actual reliable knowledge of anything at all. Ask God [higher self, all that is, etc.] to reveal its meaning.

4. Intend to see the hidden beauty of all that exists–it then reveals itself.

5. Forgive everything that is witnessed and experienced, no matter what. Remember Christ, Buddha, and Krishna all said that all error is due to ignorance. Socrates said all men can choose only what they believe to be the good.

6. Approach all of life with humility and be willing to surrender all positionalities and mental/emotional arguments or gain.

7. Be willing to forgo all perceptions of gain, desire, or profit and thereby be willing to be of selfless service to life in all of its expressions.

8. Make one’s life a living prayer by intention, alignment, humility, and surrender. True spiritual reality is actually a way of being n the world.

9. By verification, confirm the levels of consciousness and spiritual truth of all teachers, teachings, spiritual groups, and literature with which one intends to be aligned or a student.

10. Accept that by spiritual declaration, commitment, and surrender, Knowingness arises that provides support, information, and all that is needed for the entire journey.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007


Let me start by saying that “Practicing the Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle is a book that I strongly urge everyone in the world read or listen to (I’ve listened to it twice now). I’ve been doing some very thorough reading for the last two years, and this work presents everything you need to know in a concise and easy to understand way, with specific techniques to practice in your daily life. It will change your life (and the lives of the people around you) for the better.

Having said all that, let me do my best to give you some helpful tid bits I’ve learned from it and some of Tolle’s other works. Please don’t take my words as a substitute for getting a copy of this book (in print or audio) as Tolle does a much better job at explaining it all.

Acceptance is the key to eliminating all of the pain, suffering, frustration, annoyance, etc. in your life. You may have a relatively happy life, but if you are like most people and experience periods of time when you are dissatisfied in some way, shape, or form, it is a sign that you have not fully accepted “what is” in your life. Pain and suffering are caused by nonacceptance. If you are ready to be free of negativity, it’s time to start practicing acceptance. I’ve been doing it for the last week or two and experiencing some very positive transformations. I’ve also realized that acceptance is a prerequisite to experiencing compassion because you can’t feel compassion toward someone or something that you have not fully accepted for who or what it is.

Before I continue, do not mistake acceptance for becoming complacent. Just because you accept something does not mean you can not take action to make changes. You are not accepting a situation, you are accepting the “isness” of the current moment. Since you are powerless to change what has happened, you can either react to it out of resistence (if you have not accepted it for what it is) or you can react to it from a place of acceptance, which leads you to a much more insightful and positive action (as opposed to a programmed reaction). Say yes to what is, then take action. Surrender to the way things are “in this moment” without judgment and inner peace naturally manifests.

For example, we have several dogs and a new foster puppy who needs to be house trained. So, when the puppy poops in the house, I don’t accept that there is poop in the house and leave it there. I accept that it has happened and take the necessary steps to fix the situation without judging myself or my wife for allowing it to happen. Taking steps to fix the problem from a place of acceptance makes cleaning up poop a much more tolerable task.

When you experience conditions in your life that seem to limit you in some way, realize that these are concealed openings into the formless state of peace for which you have been searching all these years (whether you realize it yet or not). Be grateful when you experience another frustration, because you have been given yet another opportunity to practice acceptance. I know it sounds crazy to some of you who have a very challenging time, so it’s important to start this practice with the little things in life that frustrate you.

You will begin to notice that there are recurring things in your life that cause you frustration, and will continue to do so until you accept them and deal with them from a state of acceptance. When an opportunity arises to practice acceptance, notice how you feel (angry, sad, lonely, worried, etc.) and recognize it without judging yourself for feeling that way. This puts you in the place of who you truly are: the consciousness behind your thoughts, the silent observer. This opens the door for you to be more mindful of how your mind works and increases your awareness.

One final thing to remember in all of this involves staying present, or in the now. Stay out of the past and the future as often as possible when time is not necessary for practical purposes. Clock time involves setting a goal and focusing on each step as you work toward that goal and letting go of the outcome. Psychological time is the compulsive projection on the future goal and all of the possible outcomes (something I catch myself doing fairly often). We tend to use our past to create our identity and look toward the future for fulfillment, but remaining in the present brings us a sense of freedom. It takes practice to stay present, but I have seen first hand the positive impacts it can have.

As Tolle says, don’t take my word for it. Try it for yourself. You will likely see that surrender to what is will transform you, which will in turn transform the world around you. You will naturally begin to attract less negativity as you free yourself from the power it has over you. Realize that most people around you have no choice in what they do because they are in a mindless state (as we all are most of the time) and your resentment will disappear.

Get “Practicing the Power of Now” and listen to it or read it, and apply it in your daily life. In the meantime, share with me your questions or comments. I’m going through these changes now and may be of at least some help in clarifying what I have discussed here.
Peace be with you Now,