Musings at 75
Here in late September 2020, as so much else swirls around us, another historic moment flows silently through our midst. This Monday will be my 75th birthday.
Now, mind you, I have no sense that mortality is closing in on me any time soon (although life is full of surprises), but I do feel moved to set down on paper what I have learned these past decades. This is both for my own entertainment, and perhaps to be of some help to you.
So here goes.
First, I believe there is a higher being (called God, universe, source, spirit) and this being is all about love, light and laughter. This being lives in all people and all creation. The Sufis, the mystical sect of Islam, say that the essence of God is laughter. I am increasingly finding this to be true.
It is impossible to offend this higher being. Consisting of pure unconditional love, this being is way above our petty ways. The more you can allow this thought to banish your cultural/religious conditioning, the more joyful you will be. I came to this on my own journey, but was pleased to find that Richard Rohr says the same thing in his book, “The Universal Christ.”
Albert Einstein once said that every human being must answer the question, “Is the universe trustworthy?” My answer to this is yes! It is, however, helpful to align oneself with the universe in order to reap maximum benefit.
While there is a place for the intellect, it remains true that the mind is the servant of the heart. This is one of the major lessons I have learned in my life, after a long journey from my head (which some nasty wags think is still in progress).
Judging others, and this includes being critical of others as a way of life, is unhealthy for the soul. When we judge others, we are simply noting something in them that we see in ourselves. It’s best to just look to oneself and deal with stuff there.
Having a daily spiritual practice is the best way I know to keep the ego in its place. While there may be exceptions, will power alone does not do the trick. We need what soul work provides, which some call grace.
As the Buddhists teach, impermanence is life. Resistance to accepting this is what keeps many conservatives feeling gnarly.
The more whole we become, the more inclusive, expansive, accepting, and welcoming we are.
While there is no doubt a place for talk therapy, energy healing, such as I have found in shamanic practice is faster and easier on the pocketbook.
We are so loved by the source that even we find it hard to believe!
Bill O’Brien is a consciousness coach and shamanic practitioner. He and his wife Linda have lived in Shepherdstown since 2005. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.