All posts tagged Humility

A Light Goes Home: Thank You, Debbie Ford

Years ago, I was beginning to notice a pattern in my life: I was attracting people who often left me feeling depleted. I knew it was a pattern, but I did not know what the pattern was trying to teach me about myself. During my quest to find insights into this pattern, I went to a local bookstore where I came across Debbie Ford’s book The Dark Side of the Light Chasers. I instantly bought it, went home, tucked myself in and started to read. What followed was an opening of an inner window that had long been forgotten. Debbie’s kindness and care leapt off the pages and gave me the courage to enter into a new realm of self-understanding. As a child I was taught, perhaps like many, to break up my world into “good” and “bad”. I wanted the world to only see my “good”, and learned to shove, like we tend to do, those things I judged as “bad” somewhere into the recesses of my being. Yet from the power they gained stored away in the dark, those severed places continued to wreak havoc in my life. The disowned parts of me needed attention and integration in order for me to learn to become whole. It was not until I began, with self-love…

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Innocence, Humility and Purity: The Birth of the Divine

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, happy solstice and happy Sunday! May this day be full of beautiful things for you.   Though I was raised in a Christian home and go to church from time to time and on most high holidays, what I love about this time of year is the rich imagery about light that we can see when we are open to various spiritual traditions.   The winter solstice has just passed. We are now moving into longer days, which to me is a welcome relief. As one who loves to jump around on stage singing “I am a flower”, I have an affinity with warmer weather and lots of sunlight! The solstice marks the longest night and shortest day of year, when the sun’s greatest height in the sky is at an all time low, a phenomenon most affecting northern countries. The turn towards longer days was celebrated by our ancestors as it meant that the challenges of winter, that often brought death and starvation, were soon to be lessened.   At this time of year, Jewish people celebrate the miracle of light through the eight days of Hanukkah, a festival also known as The Festival of Lights. Hanukkah commemorates the Maccabean Revolt and reclaiming of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem, which under…

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Ask Parvati 35: The Gift in Gossip – Part 2: Cultivating Compassion

CULTIVATING COMPASSION: WE ALL SIN (Continued from Honesty and Truthfulness)   You ask, “How do we practice satya when we encounter gossip – particularly if the gossip is taking place among people we respect, or even among people who claim to be practicing yogis?”   I finally saw the 1982 movie Gandhi last night. It was incredible. I was impressed by one of the things that the character Gandhi said in this regard. He said he could not act violently against anyone who was acting unrighteously, because he too had faults. Instead, he chose to humbly stand up to what he felt was right through an active resistance to partaking in that which was unrighteous. Very importantly, standing up to unrighteousness started within his own self. He held himself up to the same standards that he inspired the world to live by.   All of us, unless you are a fully realized being, have vasanas (negative tendencies). No one is “free from sin”, so to speak. No one has the right to judge or criticize anyone, because likely they too likely possess the very traits (to some degree or another) that they tend to criticize.   As I said last week, to me, the foundation of yoga practice is humility. Spiritual evolution seems to start there.…

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Ask Parvati 32: Gratitude, The Action Of Grace – Part 4: Thanking Adversity

PART 4: THANKING ADVERSITY(Continued from Thanking Illness) We would all love our lives to flow. Experiencing green lights along our path feels smooth and effortless and can give us a sense of being on path. Yet we all have bumps along the way at some point. We often tend to see adversity through a black and white lens: seeing obstacles and challenges as a sign of failure, or seeing them as some mysterious blessing we yet have to uncover. We can may hope to learn from our mistakes but feel unsure how. We can also believe that there are no mistakes, that all is good, in denial of our responsibility in our happenings. But what if practicing gratitude for what is, shows us something beyond these polarities? It is my belief that we are constantly supported by a much greater whole while our consciousness goes through a process of refinement. As I explored in my last blog entries on creating our reality, what we experience is a reflection of our thoughts. So if we do not like our life, we need to change our beliefs and refine our state of consciousness. Many people can take a downer approach and berate their life and inwardly fight what is, in some frustrated effort to change. That kind of judgemental and tense attitude will create suffering. Others may take what I would call a bit more of…

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Ask Parvati 31: Relationship Complications – Part 3, Transcending Anger And Low Self-Esteem

  PART THREE: TRANSCENDING ANGER AND LOW SELF-ESTEEM (Continued from Faith and the Unfaithful) Question: How can I transcend anger, lack of confidence and self esteem when I know it’s the ego playing tricks in my mind?  My answer: The process of transcending anger, lack of confidence and low self-esteem are a slow and deep process. Lifetimes slow. If his Holiness the Dalai Lama says he has transcended anger, well there is hope for us all. Yet we must remember that he is in a state of Buddha Mind. So it takes a lot of time and practice! My experience tells me that learning to meet life with humility is a very powerful tool to cultivate self-esteem and self-confidence. When we are willing to learn from our mistakes and painful situations, we begin to see life as a gift, as a supportive process, rather than something “happening to me”. We then feel we have choice, and the ability to create a life we love. If we are willing to admit our own faults and shortcomings, we can feel more compassionate for the shortcomings of others as well. It is natural to feel angry when someone hurts us. But it is a reactive reflex, like you would get if you stepped on a lion’s paw. Anger is…

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Ask Parvati 30: Creating Your Reality, Part 5: Purification Back To The One

Dear friends, A year ago today I visited a high school in Iqaluit before flying home to Toronto to conclude my life-changing North Pole journey.   North Pole Journey, Day Seven The school bell rings and triggers a Pavlovian response in me. A feeling of excitement and freedom surges through my body. The halls fill with noisy, boisterous, vibrantly alive students who emerge from small rooms. Soon the auditorium is flooded with dynamic bodies full of the very hormones I felt pulsating through the halls when I first walked in. I peek out of my dressing room door and see a room agitated and full of energy…   CREATING YOUR REALITY, PART 5: PURIFICATION BACK TO THE ONE (Continued from Welcome to Life School) We must learn to purify our thoughts, lessen our attachment to our ego in order to evolve. Seeing life as a mirror provides a wonderful humbling opportunity to do just that. When we understand that what we experience is a result of our thoughts and perceptions, we can grow and make changes, so that our life becomes more fulfilling and joyful. As our minds purify, eventually we become one with the Reality that we are love. Then, love is all we see. Once we have purified our minds, released our identification with…

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Ask Parvati 30: Creating Your Reality – Part 4: Welcome To Life School

Dear friends, A year ago today was my last morning in Resolute Bay. North Pole Journey, Day Six: Back to Iqaluit We say our goodbyes to Chris at the inn, then Meghan at the airport who drives us to our departure. There is no doubt we are sad to leave. This has been an enormously important trip for each one of us, the likes of which seems still masked by a cloudy feeling that draws across my inner sight. I cannot quite see the magnitude of what this all means. All I know for sure is, like a child who marks their growth with lines on the inside of a doorjamb, the growth of my Self is marked on the doorjamb of my life by this trip to the North Pole…. ____________________________________________ Creating Your Reality, Part 4: Welcome To Life School (Continued from Life Is A Mirror) Seeing life as a mirror to our thoughts makes life our perfect school, the best place ever to evolve. We then see life constantly supporting our evolution, no matter what happens. We may experience difficulty. No problem! That is life showing us the way we have limiting beliefs, the way we need to grow, things we need to release, etc… If we are true spiritual seekers, this is great…

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Ask Parvati 29: Art As Soul Food – Part 5: Who Or What Is Creating?

PART 5: MULTIDIMENSIONAL CO-CREATORS: WHO OR WHAT IS CREATING? (Continued from A New Generation of Multi-Media Artist: The Multi-Dimensional Co-Creator) Ok. Buckle your seat belt. You may read this last entry in response to this week’s question and think, “uh oh, Parvati has drunk the kool-aid. What IS she talking about?” Well, in the spirit of sincerity, transparence and honesty, here it goes… Many of you know me well enough by now to know that I see things in terms of the multi-dimensional. We are spiritual, infinite beings in a temporal body with a temporal personality returning back to the infinite. Our soul is a reflection of the divine, merging back to pure consciousness. Our personality is being purified, the aggregates removed so that we may be vessels of unconditional love. Have you ever seen a show or looked at a work of art and wondered, who was actually creating? Sometimes, it is not only the voice of the artist’s soul. Sometimes, the work can feel superhuman, like other energies stepped in and participated in the creative process. You know what I mean? I believe that we are not alone by any stretch. We are part of a vast, intelligent universe. Just like we can observe in Nature, there are energies that need healthy space, light and…

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Ask Parvati 27: Addiction – Part 4: Getting Help

PART 4: GETTING HELP (Continued from Hitting Bottom) In the case of people who have not yet hit bottom, such as Amy Winehouse, it is very hard to help them at all. An example of resistance to admitting you have a problem are her famous lyrics, “They tried to make me go to rehab but I said ‘no, no, no’”. Sadly, she did not hit her personal bottom before she died. This is tragically the case with many addicts. The disease that is about consumption, insatiable wanting, consumes its host. It does not have to be that way. Step one in an addiction recovery program is to admit that you are powerless over your addiction and that your life has become unmanageable. It takes humility to get to step one, because the addict must come to see that the choices her or she is making are in fact not working. No one wants to admit that their life is a mess. Whether you are an addict or not, you need to admit things are not working as they are if you are going to make changes. For some, bottom can be very ugly. It can involve losing absolutely everything, loved ones, friends, family, possessions, career, and reputation. For some, it involves even losing your life. But…

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Ask Parvati 22: It’s A Spiritual Life – Part 3, Living A Spiritual Life

LIVING A SPIRITUAL LIFE (Continued from “We Are Divine”) We tend to use the word “spiritual” loosely, easily, and often. But what does being “spiritual” mean? The root of the word is spirit, that which is eternal and non-physical. So to be spiritual is to invite the infinite, non-formed spirit into our lives, into our field of awareness. To be spiritual is to dissolve our illusion of duality, the illusion of separation, the illusion that our ego is in control. Living a spiritual life involves both surrender and discipline. We must cultivate humility so we may let go of thinking we are in charge and have it all figured out. When we empty ourselves, we receive. When we open, we are fulfilled. When we give, we get. It requires discipline to train our awareness to see the divine in all. Our habit is to feel disconnected and against what is. We tend to feel lack, so we must strive. We tend to push, fight, rush and constrict due to a deep sense of wanting. Spiritual living requires a complete inner and outer world view retraining, so that we may learn through a quiet mind and open heart, to serve, to love, and truly live. Our lives are the sum of our choices. What we experience is…

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