Thursday, December 3, 2015

Energy Medicine to Help Memory

We hear more and more about energy these days. “I don’t have much energy.”  “This place has bad energy.” “I don’t like his energy.” We have a relatively new field called “energy medicine.” The practice of Reiki is widespread. See Energy Medicine on Oprah’s website, and Reiki on Wikipedia.
The world is waking up to the “meta”physical. Meta means beyond. From the mystic to the psychic, our energy fields are crackling! Everybody wants on board this powerful alternative field that brings better health, improved focus, and more energy.

Acupuncture is an oriental energy medicine. The doctor places needles into small energy points on the body to make stagnant energy flow. Acupressure is like acupuncture, but the practitioner uses their fingers to rub these points, rather than a needle.
The following are acupressure practices that help with memory, clarity, and focus.

These practices are taken from the Modern Reflexology website. You can find pictures on the site that pinpoint the exact spot, in case the directions are not clear to you. The site offers additional exercises for memory, but I find it’s easier to follow three practices than to try to work them all in.

Third Eye Point
Accessing the third eye point will help improve your concentration and memory. This point can be found directly between the eyebrows, where the forehead and bridge of the nose meet. Press this point for 3 to 4 minutes gently. Repeating it 2 to 3 times per day will uplift the spirit and clear your mind
Sun Point
The sun point can be found in the depression of the temples. It is around one and half inches away from the eyebrows. Pressing this area will help to improve concentration and memory. It will also relieve you from headaches, dizziness, and mental stress. Place two fingers on each of your temples and apply slight pressure for 2 minutes. You can do this 3 times every day for the best results.

Middle of a Person
This point relieves you from cramps, fainting, dizziness, and memory loss. It also helps in strengthening concentration and memory power. Place your finger between the upper lip and nose. This is the middle of a person. Press this point firmly for a few minutes every day. It will be extremely effective if accessed for more than four weeks.

You might want to make three cards to place by your bedside, computer, or your favorite lounging chair. Put a description of each of the energy exercises on a card and practice them while watching TV, listening to music, or at your work desk. The cards also serve as a reminder that sparks our memory when we see them.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

The Parliament of the World's Religions

I recently attended The Parliament of the World’s Religions. It’s been an amazing trip. There were 80 countries and 50 religions or paths represented. Ten thousand people melted into one compassionate human family. There were no strangers. Speakers included Jane Goodall, Marianne Williamson, Michael Beckwith, Nobel Peace Prize winners, youth, and indigenous people. There were prayers, meditations, dances, art, and music.

The Sikhs (They pronounces it sicks, which was news to me) served us a free lunch each day. One day I ate lunch with a Nigerian princess. I asked her if she was a princess like Queen Latifa and she laughed and said, “No” and I said, “Are you a princess like Princess Diana.” She replied, “Oh no, Princess Diana married into the royal family. I was born into the royal family.” Side by side we sat, conversing about her role as the head of an international NGO that is affiliated with the UN. She was a gracious young woman living her dharma and helping the youth of the world.

I ran into several people I knew and miracle and synchronicity were the norm. We were called into action, inspired, and challenged. It was a time of community, playfulness, and empathy.
One of my favorite quotes from the conference: “If white Christians were more Christian and less white, black mothers wouldn’t have to teach their children how to act when confronted by a policeman.”

Another zinger came from a Swiss Muslim who talked about how the western media portrays Muslims. He said if he wasn’t a Muslim and all he knew about Muslims was what heard in the news, he would be afraid of Muslims too.” He realizes, of course, that most Muslims are peaceful and that Isis is a result of American intervention. We heard statistics that showed that when the U.S. occupies another country, our safety declines.

One person said when the past Pope fed the hungry, they called him a saint; when he asked why the people were hungry, they called him a communist.

I will be ever grateful that I was able to attend the parliament. My heart is bursting with the impassioned drive to protect our earth, champion social justice, and to love my neighbor.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

How Do You React When You Are Cold?

Have you ever noticed that when people are cold, they don’t look relaxed? They pull in and cross their arms. I was very thin most of my adult life and had a strange relationship with the cold. The cold seemed to stop me in my tracks.

In the mid-eighties I went to Lenard Orr’s hot springs retreat center in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The snow was deep. It was an incredible sight to this southerner. I spent 9 hours in the snow, alone on the side of a mountain, hosted by a roaring fire. The fire was my friend and savior; it seemed to talk to me – not in words, but it offered a deep comforting wordless solitude. Snow fell and the white covered world with its profound stillness was magic. I had never considered staying outside in a snow storm for nine hours. This was a fire initiation, but for me, it was an initiation into the cold. 

Later during my stay I attended a traditional sweat lodge. We entered the lodge naked (no shoes either) and perched on towel covered frozen ground. It was warm in the lodge but between rounds we went out in the cold. Rather than go into my normal dialogue about the cold, I decided to see what I had avoided all these years – the direct experience of cold. In the past, I let my aversion to the cold run me. Now I wanted to face it. It was amazing that when I experienced the feel of the ice on my feet, and the cold on my skin, I was okay. It was not even unpleasant. It was a mystical experience to be fully present in the cold, directly experiencing it without out my mind dominating the experience. What freedom.

Even though it is wise to dress appropriately for cold weather, and the cold signals a time for more of an inner experience, it also offers a training. If you live in a cold climate, you may have to take the coldness training every day. My suggestion is that that you determine and define your relationship to the cold. We’ve all trained to complain about the cold and to avoid the cold, but if you find yourself in the cold  - just try the direct experience of it. You can go into the warmth of your home, I’m not suggesting you hang around in the cold for fun, but you will be in the cold. For once, face it without your mind working on how to fix it – even for a few seconds. Everyone will find something different, but if you directly experience this physical discomfort, you will find something that you didn’t know you had. And when you face the cold, rather than running from it, you will find that your life can be easier and easier.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Demonizing Food

One of the less-examined areas of addiction is food addiction. It is estimated that eight million Americans have an eating disorder–seven million women and one million men. Celebrities with eating disorders include Elton John, Princess Diana, Nicole Richie, Jane Fonda, Joan Rivers, Britney Spears, and Lynn Redgrave. Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.

In addition to eating disorders, we have disordered eating. We use food to cover up emotions and to dull emotional pain. Some authorities believe that over 65 percent of women and 45 percent of men have disordered eating patterns. These statistics point to a startling truth: our relationship with food is sick.

Read more....

Article in the Quest Journal

Seeing What is Already Here

One day in January of 2014 I looked refrigerator door and found a ghost.  There were so many notes, coupons, and pictures stuck on my fridge that notes got lost. While clearing expired coupons, I found a sticky note. It said "hummus, sprouts, and jacket." My heart stopped. It was put there by my dear deceased friend, Judy. I recognized her handwriting. She had probably come home with me, put her food in the fridge, her jacket in the closet, and written a note as a reminder to take them home. Now the jacket she wanted to remember hangs in my closet. I inherited it. Her body retired more than a year before, and the note was there all this time, but I never noticed. How many things do we overlook, not just one time, but consistently?

Is it possible that the answers we so desperately seek are here all along, available to us but overlooked? Enlightenment is about seeing what is already here. While we are having a fit about being in the dark, the light inside is always shining. Things are just not the way they appear to the conditioned mind, and if we want freedom, we have to realize that nothing is missing; everything is okay. Nothing missing. Got it?

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Easy Does It

Today I saw a squirrel run up and down a tree to find the perfect spot to jump to the roof of the front porch. It was a difficult jump. I watched from my second story window as he strategized. Finally he leaped. He made it. There was no food on that small roof and no way to get to the top of the upper roof. The only place for him to go was back from where he started.

I smiled, knowing how it feels to put effort into a losing idea or life choice. Even though there was time and effort put into the squirrel’s jump, I’m sure he was not traumatized when he had to backtrack. Next time I make a mistake, lose an unsaved article, or go on a fruitless journey, I plan to remember that squirrel. He provided a great lesson in ease. Even though he went the wrong way, he never had a hard attack.

Have a great week. I hope this little squirrel will inspire you to take a different kind of leap – a leap away from ego driven suffering.


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Make Your Life a Love Story

Be delighted by Life. Let it take you into her arms and nourish you. Awaken to Life. Embrace Life. Don’t think of life as hard or as a burden. These may sound like lofty words, but these are words that are worthy of us. This is the truth of our being.

Life is not the enemy and fortunately, there is no enemy. Jesus said to love our enemies, because when we do that, they no longer are our foes. Gandhi said the best way to defeat an enemy is to turn them into a friend. This doesn’t refer to the enemies on the outer battlefield; it’s about the enemies in the inner world. Our enemy is anyone we criticize silently (in our mind talk), those we are jealous of, and those we are upset with when they treat us poorly. We are so prone to defense that we turn our friends and loved ones into frenemies even when they are the ones who love us the most. We are in love with defending. We think our existence depends on having people to be upset with. Notice the next time you are upset with someone and see if you want to hang on to your upset or if you are willing to let it go. When we do not want to let go of our upset, it points to our need to hang onto drama. Irritation or anger is more dangerous to our health than smoking or the lack of exercise. It’s one thing to be upset with others, but realizing that the upset is killing us prematurely, should make us take pause in our emotions 

Life is an ever-present unfolding mystery that touches us at every turn with adventure and pleasure.  The real adventure is the inner journey, but too often we get sidetracked with our relationships. We use them as an excuse to get out of our life’s mission. We have a mission. It is not a mission to be a great singer or inventor; it is a mission to be a great lover. We are destined to be a lover of all people, a purveyor of compassion, and transformer of darkness into light. Our mission is to shine our light so others can shine. We are supposed to dig into the souls of others until we find the gold. We are not designed to find weak spots in our friends, coworkers, and family members and then to go after them so we can feel like bigger people. 

We are the very embodiment of love. We are his people and the sheep of his pasture. Let us rest in this knowing because when we set our hearts love-ward there is a universal wind that draws us towards a sweetness that we want to share. We can’t contain the good news. We share it in our smiles, looks of appreciation, and kind words. We shed the cynicism, the defense, and the anger. We release the fear and the sadness dissolves. We rejoice in Life. Let’s set our sails love-ward and share the love of our existence with others, and not project our pain into our relationships. It is our mission. We don’t have to run around shouting that we don’t know what to do with our lives. How much clearer can it be? Love one another and that will not only make our lives EZier, it will make our lives meaningful.