William Penn became a Quaker. He was used to wearing a sword. He asked, ‘Now that I have made the commitment to be a Quaker, when do I have to stop wearing my sword?’ The answer was very simple; ‘Wear it until you can’t wear it any more.
Here you are in the human form. You have come for the most part willingly but sometimes with some reluctance, yet knowing that you must come, that this is the work you deeply choose to do, even if it’s going to be difficult. An image that comes to my mind is the baseball player who plays in the outfield. He’s doing fielding practice. Is his coach going to keep sending him one easy ball after another? What kind of practice would that be? He’ll send him a few easy balls to warm up, and then some hard ones to challenge him. Otherwise he’s not going to learn anything.
You have all picked up different kinds of patterns and these are your life jackets. The obsessive mind is a certain kind of life jacket. The obsessive mind is the habitual tendency, the mind that grabs something and runs with it, and the outflow of that tendency is the specific form it takes such as planning or despair or anger. The first step is in knowing you have a choice. Knowing, ‘I’m stuck in this particular life jacket right now. It’s very old. I’ve seen that not only does it not keep me afloat but it tends to drag me down. I am not going to wear this anymore.’ …You do not need to cling to the life jacket, it’s safe to take it off. But you must be willing to remind yourself, ‘Fear is present. It is safe to let go of this old rotten life jacket.’ Of course you need to see it as old and rotten. Otherwise you’re still stuck to it.
Some people ask me why we practice. Why not just rest in Awareness, since the noting of vipassana can enhance the illusion of a self? Why not just rest in emptiness? Fine, if you are there, stably there, able to never fixate on objects that arise, never to experience any contracting emotions. I personally do not know a single human today who has arrived at that level of pure being, pure presence. For the rest of you, you practice. This is not a denial of the perfection of your true nature but a reminder that that nature still needs to be revealed.
I want you to know that the work I do is my joy. Each of you has work that you do to try to help the suffering in the world, to try to bring kindness and love into the world, and it is my great joy to have the opportunity through Barbara to do this work.
At that point where one says, ‘I am feeling overwhelmed by this,’ one can withdraw. There are two skillful means of withdrawing. One is literally to withdraw, just go into your room and close the door. Sit and meditate, do metta practice, listen to music. Do something that’s comforting and that helps you to re-center yourself, to come back in touch with that part of you that’s loving. The second means is that you can literally, energetically, set boundaries, asking spirit to help you. You can use the archangels or whatever element of spirit resonates with you, the Christ energy, the Buddha energy. This allows a compassionate statement, ‘that’s enough.’
Many of your pets are learning not to enact their fear with negative action in the world. We see this in such a simple thing as the animal who is brought to the vet for an examination. He has learned to trust humans enough that although he’s terrified, he doesn’t bite. When this being moves into 3rd density, he is far less likely to be reactive to difficult catalyst in ways that cause harm. He doesn’t bite because he loves and trusts the owner, and from the owner he is learning a certain amount of self-restraint, to be present with what is, even when it’s uncomfortable, without needing to strike out against it. The more that animals learn this in 2nd density, the more they can come into 3rd density with a wisdom and kindness that is not possible for the animal that comes into 3rd density without this intermediary step of beloved household pet.
Can you plant the seeds today that will flourish tomorrow, truly creating a millennium of growing peace and understanding? Here is the possibility of a world of aware of the deep interconnection between all that is, of deepest reverence for every expression of the divine; here is the increasing ability to say no to distortions and help invite deeper understanding of those distortions but without hatred.
To love someone or something dearly does not cause suffering; it simply is love, an open heart, intimacy, a passionate love. But when there is fear that ‘My love will not be fulfilled,’ or ‘I cannot hold on to what I love,’ when there is fear and grasping then there is suffering. The being that understands impermanence and notes, ‘I cannot hold onto this forever. I can cherish it while it’s here,’ he or she does not suffer.
As wisdom and compassion develop and deepen, and also the ability to stay present in your lives, some of you find the Buddha’s path very helpful and some of you are more drawn back into your own religions to explore there, how to bring in kindness instead of hatred. ‘In what ways can I find realization in this religious path with which I resonate?’ It doesn’t matter; the paths are all leading to the same place.
Spirit has said, if you come with a little cup, it will be filled. If you come with a bucket, it will be filled. If you come with a huge tub, it will be filled. What is the capacity? What you ask for, Love will give. But you also need to be prepared for what you’re given because it will demand work of you.
The work of any Light Center is not just to provide a physical home where people may come together, but it is instead to provide a place for practice of the skills of being a light being. That’s the meaning of light center. It’s a place that draws beings of light and invites them to manifest that light. Each being is given that opportunity and each will be found to have their own unique radiance that enriches the whole.