I want to be more present in my life;
I want to be more present with myself;
I want to be more present with my family and friends;
I want to be more present at work or school.
What does that mean? How do I do that?
Presence is the matrix through which we experience all aspects of our human experience. It is fundamental to all relationships with oneself, family and friends, work-life, a sense of meaning and purpose in life and connection to community, nature and to the divine. When we are “present” our mind body and feelings are working together in alignment and we experience more peace and clarity. Without presence we don’t know that we actually exist, nor do we have access to any real information or understanding of what is happening with ourselves or anyone else. Anyone who cultivates presence in their own life and work can, with acceptance, empathy and understanding, relate to others more easily. Continue reading “I Want to Be More Present in my Life by Eileen Sendrey”
While at the grocery store the other day ready to check out, I looked from line to line doing my best to figure out which line would be the quickest. I waited anxiously for my turn as I continued to scan the other lines to determine if I had made the “right” choice. Still considering if I should make a last minute change, I began to unload my groceries on the conveyor belt just as the cashier asked for a price check over the store intercom. Frustration and anxiety were my first reactions before realizing there was nothing I could do to change my current situation, but there was something I could do to change my relationship to it. Continue reading “Relating to Life in This Moment by Steve Brodsky”
A client came to see me for a consultation last week. She was frightened about the condition of her body, and had researched her concerns and options thoroughly. The more she spoke, the more tense she became. As I listened to her, I experienced the tension in my own body. I saw that I was identifying with her suffering as if it was my own.
I recognized that instead of feeling bad for her situation, I could offer support by fully listening to her, without commentary. I connected to my breath and the weight of my body on the ground. I put my medical mind on hold, not trying to ‘fix’, or ‘change’ the state of her mind, body, or feelings. Continue reading “Body-Mind Connection Anchors You by Alexandra Johnson”
After chopping apples for several minutes, I scooped them into a bowl and the movement of my arms reminded me that I have a body. I stood in front of the table briefly, and let that fact sink in. I recognized that from the time I started preparing apples until then, my mind was lost in thoughts about the future, and my feelings shifted quickly from one reactive state to another.
Continue reading “Coming Home to Yourself by Elaine Pendergrast”
At a recent gathering, two guests began a conversation that created a palpable tension in the room. I was asked what I thought, and saw the pull to present my opinion to the group. Then I remembered the principle of Firmness and Gentleness. If I spoke without forethought, there was the possibility of erring on the side of too much Firmness, increasing the polarization. If I stayed passive, the dialogue could likewise continue to be increasingly reactive. I placed my hand on the shoulder of one of my kids, who was standing next to me. I wished to have Firmness and Gentleness in my touch. Continue reading “Supporting Harmony in Relationships by Alexandra Johnson”
I have an opportunity, in each moment, to enter into health. The state of my body, mind, and feelings play a role in this, but not necessarily the one I have been conditioned to think. Growing up, I learned that if I had an illness, such as a flu or stomach troubles, I wasn’t well. Once the malady was treated and had passed, then I could call myself healthy again. Over time, this created a setup in which I began to feel healthy less of the time. As I got older and experienced more chronic issues, for example knee problems, thyroid dysfunction, or allergies, I was rarely able to consider myself in good health.
As a physician, I see patients of all ages with varying physical, mental or emotional conditions. Many times, those with acute illnesses relate to the state of their body with fear and anxiety. From childhood, we receive messages about how the body “should” or “shouldn’t” be. In the absence of questioning these preconceptions, we continue to live in reaction. As the state of the world often has us in crisis, this exacerbates a cycle of tension and stress.
Continue reading “True Health Means Harmony with Existence by Alexandra Johnson”
What happens when consciousness develops and fulfills its potential? The beginning and end come together, just as they do in physical evolution. The seed becomes a tree, the tree grows branches, it flowers, gives fruit, and the fruit give seeds. We come from within the Absolute. Our ultimate evolution is back to the Absolute.
—from Freedom Comes from Understanding by Jon Schreiber
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