The eyes of the spiritual heart see the necessity of life's vicissitudes to develop inner strength and transformation. It is this heart that unravels the tensions of the mind, and frees us from the entrapments of fear. It is in this heart, that we can find rest and comfort amidst the thunderstorms around us.
We are just about one week into 2015 - a new cycle has begun, and is pregnant with potential. I enjoy the (perceived) clean slate that comes with each new year. It compartmentalizes our existence into meaningful increments, into manageable time frames that help us to cope with the turbulence of life.
People like you and me, who have been committed to grow in consciousness throughout the millennia, have always practiced various forms of mindfulness in community. Today's fledgling "shared mindfulness" movement is both a continuation of a noble tradition, and at the same time, a timely response to our life conditions in the 21st century.
All too quickly those childhood dreams and aspirations ebbed away as the responsibilities of your first mortgage, meeting your partner, marriage, children, a bigger house and simply staying afloat rapidly took centre stage. And before you knew it, there you were, slap bang in the middle of the rat race.
What exactly does "conscious living" mean? In a nutshell, it means to be aware of your thoughts, speech and actions in every moment without causing harm to yourself or those around you. This basic approach to life may sound simple, but after centuries of tribal conditioning, living with absolute awareness requires deliberate observation and on going personal development.
The social sector's moral authority was once its greatest strength. Now I believe it has become one of its greatest weaknesses. The belligerence that comes from self-righteousness may have got us to the top table in business and government. But now it is what stops us building the new creative relationships and ideas that can embed the systems change we need.
Trying to make a decision in a relationship, job, finance or choosing a location all involve the same problem, the possibility of regret. That ability we have of placing ourselves in the future and looking back on that moment of choice with horror. Then rehearsing the idea of beating ourselves up for being such an idiot. Duh!