Week 2: Compassion, Forgiveness Dialogue — We be Lotus

Just like Lesley of Sustainable Utopia, I also did not keep a journal of my negative mental chatter, as part of Compassion week of the 8 Week Challenge. I’m very aware of it though, as I’ve been working with this issue for a long time. I’ve learned some things about the self-defeating thoughts that go through my head, unbidden. Here are a few gems I’ve acquired along the way ……….. It’s my hope that they will be of some use to you:) ****PLEASE NOTE: I frequently catch myself saying & listening to unsolicited & hateful thoughts; it is a long-standing habit. I am worthy of love & well-being anyway:)****

Negative thoughts are like unwelcome guests — you have to acknowledge that they are there; that’s the reality of it, & no good comes from acting like they are not what they are. But, as with an unwelcome guest, we can firmly & graciously refuse to entertain them — kick their asses out! It is an act of quiet upliftment & tacit forgiveness to disallow self-hate.

I have found over the years that it’s not always easy, or even possible, to stop the mental berating I put myself through. But it IS always possible to replace it with something kinder. Affirmations are very beneficial for this. I like to compose one or more affirmations aimed at undoing whatever crap I am telling myself. The key is counteracting & counterbalancing. For example: How could you let yourself gain so much weight?!? —->>> I am a woman of fierce & vibrant beauty, who needs no one else’s approval! The worst that will happen is that we will forget the undermining script, for awhile. The best that might happen is ……… we may come to believe it!! The important thing here: Halting the unkind thought stream.

A few years ago, I discovered japa mantra, & then received a Guru mantra from Amma. The word ‘mantra’ itself means to ‘go away from the mind’; it is a powerful means of controlling the contents of our minds. I run various mantras through my head a lot. I mean, thousands of times a day now, walking ……… washing dishes ……… before sleeping ………. in the shower ……….. And lo, I increasingly find that the Guru mantra is coursing through my mind without being consciously started ………….  So, if I step off the curb in the path of a runaway bus, a mantra, for example, Om mani padme hum, might be the last thought stream of my dying mind. As opposed to, say, What kind of a friggin’ loser is broke in her mid-50s?!? Oh, so much more auspicious!! Our crummy self talk lowers our vibrational pattern; mantra actually raises it, making of us our own Higher Self.

Which raises the question: If I’m saying thousands, tens of thousands of mantras each day, how many ugly thoughts might I otherwise be having?!? Good Goddess Almighty, is THAT a frightening realization, or what!? If we — the collective We — have been telling ourselves frightful, undermining, self-hating things bazillions of times a day ………… ALL of our lives ………….. no wonder the world has such horrors in it, no wonder so many seek desensitizing activities ……………… no wonder so many are suffering, living as if in hell on earth. Sobering, eh?

By allowing the foetid junk that free floats through our wee minds to remain, then we are colluding in creating that hell. And that is an ugly, reprehensible behavior, which we can choose to discontinue. The Buddha put it this way, simply:

“With our minds we create the world.”

So, there’s really no other way to see it: By stopping our destructive mental habits, replacing them with more uplifting, kind thought streams, we collectively can begin to create a wholly different kind of world. This can be a world of affirming ourselves & one another, if we want it to be. It can be a world where Joy & Compassion & Peace are what we birth, from the seeds of our thoughts, instead of those that begin & perpetuate Destruction, Greed & Hate. Here we can take the Lotus, so beloved an image in Asia, as the symbolic guide for our journey: It is rooted in the yucky, mucky pond bottom, & rises through the murky water, where it blooms vividly & open to the light on the surface. And so it is with us — we too begin mentally mired in the mucky, yuckiness of self-destructive chatter. As we realize our desire for A Better Way Of Being, our vision is at first clouded, as it is difficult to see clearly, through the murky, clamorous environment of contemporary life. But, as we reach toward that Better Way, as we become that Better Way, we too will move into the light, where our blooming, vivid & open, will be of benefit to others ……………. It all begins with one thought ………. then, another …………. then …….

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