Wednesday, November 11, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 9

It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add new definitions to your point of view each week.

Integrity: The honest expression of the healed integration of our animal, human and Divine natures. We lose our integrity when we forget we are the source of the light and love we are seeking and don’t speak and act from this truth. The easy way to go astray (out of our integrity) is to use the phrase “my integrity” to justify selfish acts.

Karma: Karma is not some long arm of Divine law and order. It is simply the result of cause and effect in action. There are consequences to every action. There does seem to be an intensification of the consequences by repeatedly avoiding learning a lesson. This is simply what it feels like to break through the increased layers of the denial system.

Love: Unconditional acceptance. Love arises from an unlimited place, so there is no reason to horde it. When it is shared, there is really nothing to lose. “Loss” and “safety” are the purview of fear not love. IN fact the only way to know love is to feel it being expressed.

Love-relationship: In most relationships, we see what we want to see because we want love so badly. We deny what we don’t like, or cover it up with the shroud of the Hope Demon. Later, when we see our beloved more closely, we say we were deceived and we blame the beloved. In fact, from the beginning, we deceived ourselves. We should love because it gives us pleasure to feel love flowing through and out of us. We love another because of who we are. We like others because of who they are. We cannot like a person for his or her potential, as potential has nothing to do with present reality. Potential implies someone— other/you/me—needs to change to become more suitable. It also means love is attached to an aspect in someone that does not exist. We can’t change another. With all of our best efforts, it is very difficult to change ourselves. If it is not possible to accept a loved one as they are, it is most generous to show respect and leave them so they are available for a reciprocal loving relationship.

Mistake: Actions that arise out of the confusion about what is best for ourselves. An inevitable experience that helps us perfect your mastery by learning what works and what doesn’t. If we can limit the number of times we make the same mistake, mastery will come a lot quicker. We thwart our potential when we let fear of failure prevent us from taking chances. The key is to take a chance and be willing to neutrally accept the outcome. If we then categorize the event as a mistake, we need to do our best to learn from it; so we don’t have to waste time doing it again. (Please be kind to yourself and don’t let having to repeat it present an opportunity for the mind's committee to gang up for an internal assault. Instead be so happy to witness the truth of the circumstances and learn from it. Now, the lesson can finally be over.)

Moment (The): That current bit of time that is gone the second we try to capture, identify or hold it and yet is the only place where we can make a choice. We can explore the esoteric aspects of the Divine Mysteries, sit at the feet of great masters and ponder the possibilities of past lives, but truth and action can only be located in a now moment.

No/Co-dependency: Disappointing another to be true to ourselves. Allowing another to hook us with his or her story. When we fully participate in another’s drama, we are by default acknowledging that there is substance to the lie that suggests that person has been victimized by life. Instead share compassion and refrain from playing on another’s stage.


Gini Gentry - www.ginigentry.com

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 8

It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add new definitions to your point of view each week.


Hell: The short definition of a fear based belief system. A place of great suffering where love is conditional, the good times are limited and acceptance has endless conditions attached.


Hope and Potential Demons; and their good buddy, Wishful Thinking: Hope is one of those curious places the mind goes; it doesn’t actually create any harm, but it lulls us into inaction while offering no result. Hope is sometimes mistaken for a technique. We had falsely believed because Hope stayed in Pandora’s box, its ravages didn’t affect humans like the trail of tears left by the other demons. With Hope by your side, we can invest in someone’s Potential, but in spite of Wishful Thinking, Hope has nothing to do with someone else’s potential. Hope and Potential may be the biggest curse of all, as their power exists in the inaccessible future. The Hope demon says you’ll be happy when you do _______ (fill in the blank). The Potential demon says you’ll be happy when someone or something else does _______ (fill in the blank). Wishful Thinking keeps you circulating back to the other demons by telling you “it will be different this time.” we can only do or feel anything in the now, not in the future.


Image of Perfection: An unobtainable somewhat ridiculous personal vision inspired by the judge. The judge keeps our attention hooked by aligning the goal posts to something just out of reach and then moving the goal posts as we "improve". This distortion arose NOT out of us being imperfect but about being blind to the truth of our magnificence. The quest for it implies that we are intrinsically flawed and that something will make us appear better. Once again and then again the quest strengthens the Lie of Our Imperfection. In fact we are born whole and perfect without need for improvement and in the likeness of the One who created us.


False Image: We master who we think we are and live our life on auto-pilot. We have two primary images. The first is a tightly controlled image that we assume makes us most acceptable in the eyes of others and so we project it out into the world. We modify this image at will. The second is based on our judgments and perceived failings, laced with disproportionate judgment and shame and held secretly within. Both are based on what or how our inner judge has assessed how we should be while all the while disregarding the good news. We’ve habituated this process so profoundly we are hardly aware of its existence. Freedom of choice, lies unbidden in the shadow.


Impeccable: The highest possible thought or action you can put forth. As you evolve, the level of your highest possibility advances with you.


Gini Gentry - http://www.ginigentry.com

Sunday, October 25, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 7

It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add new definitions to your point of view each week.

Free Will: What happens when we are free to control our own attention and are no longer in reaction. From this perspective we are at choice and are free to take conscious action.


Freedom and its Price: Priceless. Freedom is not about personal space, money or relationships that bind. It is also not freedom from the Divine or freedom from love. In one way or another, we are bound to this life. True freedom is the ability to allow our emotions to flow through us and to make intentional choices based on present time. To be free we must embrace our fearless connection with the Divine Mystery and love; or else we get the default, which is other than love. There is not a neutral choice that says we can be free and not choose to align with the Divine Mystery. It is not possible to find freedom and leave The Divine out of the mix.


Gratitude: The choice to see the Divine Mystery in all things. We should have endless gratitude for not getting all those things we have thought we wanted as those desires have often been motivated by the promptings of our fearful bleiefs. Often the way we get what we need is not to get what we want.


Greed: Attachment to more than you need. Greed is self-perpetuating as it creates a sense of greater need because of its hollow fulfillment.


Guilt: We feel guilty when we make ourselves wrong for our choices or even thoughts of making choices. We say someone can make us feel guilty, but no one else can make us feel anything. Guilt is one of the largest wastes of energy we perpetrate upon ourselves. It arise from this idea that somehow (and we’re not even remotely sure how) we’re intrinsically wrong. At the root of it all --AGAIN-- is the omnipresent Lie of Our Imperfection that arose from our socialization.


Happiness: The quality of emotion we feel when we have accepted yourself as we are and there is a consistent characteristic of peaceful acceptance and love pervading our emotions. This love is impersonal and doesn’t depend on meeting certain outside criteria to exist. This can be confusing because we have often associated our feelings of happiness with control and accumulation. This is a gross inaccuracy. That particular aberration of happiness could be described more precisely as the relief that occurs because we feel safe when the illusion of the Magical Theatre of our life momentarily allows us to believe our needs are being met from the outside.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 6

It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add new definitions to your point of view each week.

Drama: What occurs when someone or something is not how or what we (or them) want it to be and we (or them) lose our awareness and go into a reaction.

Empowered Victim: A more masterful victim, but still confused. A person motivated by old lingering wounds to use newly acquired power to look important. A newfound voice that may be speaking about ideas that are closer to the truth but with veiled judgment and without true acceptance or love.

Experience: What arises from life when we do not get the outcome we are attached to.

Fear of the unknown: No such thing. You are afraid of re-experiencing something that you already know or think you know.

Fear, Irrational and Otherwise: A bear running toward you is a reasonable fear that arises when the body is in danger. Unless you have a past life as Goldilocks, it is not natural to worry (feel fear) that a bear may appear any time you pass a grove of trees.

Fear: Contraction, anxiety, depletion, worry, envy, arrogance, disharmony, scarcity, anger, guilt and bitterness in action.

Forgiveness: Releasing another from being responsible for how we feel. When we forgive, we no longer poison ourselves each time we remember someone else’s perceived transgressions. This is not giving a seal of approval to the bad guys, rather it frees us from the mantle of our victimhood and the need to get even. At the very least, it offers the ability to go forward without carrying the burden or resentment. It is also important to forgive ourselves for innocently believing the lie of our imperfection.

Gini Gentry - http://www.ginigentry.com

Sunday, October 4, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 5

It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add new definitions to your point of view each week.

Deal Breakers: There is much wisdom to gather on our journey to self-mastery. We can go in search of this understanding and select the path that goes to the right or the left and it won't matter appreciably if we are sincere and strive to be impeccable. We can meditate, dream or chant—or none of those things. We will each proceed through life with our own distinctive approach, however there are some specific obstacles we must each overcome where each of us has to get it. Getting it usually requires releasing a limiting habit or belief and acquiring a new understanding that is crucial for mastery. With new understanding comes wisdom and a boost to our current level of awareness. If we don’t surrender certain attitudes and actions, our progress is impeded and eventually our development is arrested. The attitudes we need to surrender to gain wisdom are deal breakers.

Denial System: A way we perpetuate our limited beliefs by turning a blind eye to circumstances that would call our beliefs into question. To keep our belief system in place and avoid feeling the pain of our fearful false beliefs- AKA wounds, we learn to lie to ourselves and present a contrived image to please others. If we are aware of our lying, and we usually aren’t, we learn to justify the lies, thereby avoiding scrutiny by our morals police. Our DS can also drape an invisibility cloak on a circumstance and that ostensibly makes it easier to handle by repressing what would be painful to experience. We become so practiced at denial that it occurs automatically and blocks us from seeing and feeling what is really going on. As a consequence, it blocks our ability to be in choice.

Detachment: The action of releasing our emotional attachment to the quality, outcome or beliefs of a situation, relationship or circumstance.

Discernment: The action of making a choice. (Judgment is the opinion you have about the choice you have made. Judgment is always present in reactionary choices.)

Divine Great Mystery: Mighty living force of the Creator. The Conscious, immortal, deathless aspect that animates our body seamlessly connecting us to all that is.

Dogma: The Rules that humans agree must be followed to know the Divine Mystery. These rules differ considerably from group to group. No one group has a corner on the market, and yet all of these groups offer their traditions as the Divine traditions. It would be wise to not confuse traditions of man with traditions of the Divine.

Gini Gentry - http://www.ginigentry.com

Monday, March 2, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 4


It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add new definitions to your point of view each week.

Cathartic Release: When we pry loose the tightly held covering of a fearful and difficult emotion and relieve the pressure, the experience can be so intense that it is easy to confuse the release with a permanent healing. BUT, until we find and eliminate the false or unsupported belief that lies at the root of the fear, the pressure will build again and again. To assist in turning the experience from a cathartic release to a more lasting experience here is a powerful technique called LIQUID: Listen, Identify, Question, Understand, Intuit, and Decide. It goes like this: Listen to the babble of the inner voices to locate the belief at the core of the discomfort. If emotional pain is present, it indicates the presence of long-held hurtful and likely false beliefs. Identify the belief as carefully, thoroughly, and honestly as possible, using the impeccable clarity of the impartial observer. Question the belief’s validity through the discernment of the impartial observer, and notice how it feels physically. Understand what it would be like to live the rest of life with the belief. Intuit life without it. Finally, Decide if this belief should be running your personal production in the Magical Theatre. If not,—make a conscious, willful commitment to do whatever it takes to release it. As it leaves, it is like witnessing smoke as there is nothing “real” in a belief that is not based on enduring truth. Next, intentionally fill the empty space with love. When the residue of emotional wounding is released and the resulting space is filled with love, another building block of life mastery slides into place.

Centered: A place in the center of duality. Here things don’t stop changing, rather it means allowing them to be how they are without need for an opinion or a fuss.

Complaining: What robs us of our happiness when we don’t take responsibility for our life experience. Posing as a victim, blaming and trying to get someone else to fix it can also accomplish this. It is a perverse way to get attention for suffering which leads to more suffering.

Control: Trying to regulate events and circumstances to get what we want/need, and feel safe. Of course, since everything is under the purview of the Divine Mystery, we are never in control we just think we are. Our actions are usually our reactions and they crop up unbidden and automatically like a robot. The only thing we really control is what we put on in the morning. Even dressing for the illusion is questionable. Everything is just part of the Mystery.

Courage: Feeling the fear—sweaty palms, racing heart and shortness of breath—and doing it anyway.

Gini Gentry - http://www.ginigentry.com

Monday, February 16, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 3

It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add three new definitions to your point of view each week.

Belief System: The facts we have each selected from an infinite number of possibilities to justify our singular point of view and the resulting self-image that we identify as necessary to be accepted by others. Our belief systems offer us the illusion of being right so we can feel safe and justify our existence. When we originally devise our belief systems, we are often motivated by fear and typically (oops!) omit the criteria that our beliefs should support living an unconditional life based on love. By consciously choosing AGAIN what we will believe, we expand our experience of life from fearful limitation to infinite possibility.

Blame: When we place responsibility outside of ourselves for feeling what we are feeling. Blame arises in the absence of honest self-reflection. When we cast responsibility for our emotions outward, we prevent the transformation of toxic feelings by tightly holding onto our pain until they change. In this way, we miss the exit door out of our discomfort. When we are willing to see the truth, we find that we are pulling our own pain levers as it is always our own reaction that lies at the root of the discomfort we are experiencing. This point of view does not grant an unbridled permission to someone else to hurt us but gives us an understanding that we don’t have to take their actions personally—or stick around for that matter. When we remove blame from our experience, we will discover the joy that was waiting in the shadow blame was casting.

Boundaries: The use of boundaries changes with our movement through the upward spiral of our self-awareness. In the beginning of our self-exploration, we often don’t have what can be called appropriate personal limits. Because we don’t have a clear frame of reference, we slide blindly past reasonable bounds, ignoring our best interests, trying to gain love, and/or acceptance and approval. Sometimes it can be the opposite. What we think of as boundaries can more accurately be described as walls since they afford us the illusion of control, comfort and protection. Instead, this wall can have four sides that poses a trap that keeps up from enjoying the many delicious possibilities life has to offer. Boundaries are initially quite challenging as they are an easy place for our inner voices (our People) to offer more confusion. Without a greater understanding of how our wounds and false beliefs function, no safety zone/boundary will stick. For example, excessive generosity (without discernment) can arise out of a need to create a self-image of a loving magnanimous person--we don’t entirely believe it ourselves, so we create proof. In fact, if we peek behind the desire to create this image, we might find a need to look special, get attention etc. to cover up feelings of selfishness or to gain the approval we are withholding from ourselves. As we gain awareness of our underlying false beliefs and resolve our emotional fear we naturally amend our boundaries to reflect our evolving ease.

Gini Gentry - www.ginigentry.com

Monday, February 9, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES - PART 2


It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add three new definitions to your point of view each week.

Attention: The ability to focus on something and differentiate what is observed. We are so used to having our attention captured indiscriminately AND having reactions, that we hardly realize the choices available to differentiate and neutrally interpret what is perceived. When we do not discriminate where we place our attention we become easy prey to fear and conditional beliefs and delay our progress of awakening to the truth of our being. By using our awareness to develop discipline, we can learn to direct where we place our attention, and take responsibility for our response. With this proficiency, we place ourselves in a position to observe and modify the basic beliefs we hold about reality and determine the position we will take in it.

Authentic Self: It is easy to be confused about who we really are with so many images projected on us. We tend to accept the positive or negative opinions that most closely align with our socialization. To be authentic involves no further training; there is nothing new to accomplish. To experience the authentic self means only clearing away the aspects that are not true and enduring: identification with the body, emotional blockages and pain, opinions, and fear based beliefs. Delightedly, an authentic person doesn’t need validation from any point of view. When we experience life from our authentic nature, we are no longer held captive by “should think” or “should act” as those thought exists apart from our integrity. It is easy to be kind and compassionate and practice forgiveness. Our immutable authenticity is the force that animates and moves the physical body.

Awakening: When we see life as it is--not how we want to subjectively see it—we come to accept that all of life is unfolding perfectly under the benevolent gaze of the Divine Mystery. The awakened state is a natural maturation of having broken the spell that led us to forget the birthright of our abiding magnificence. Awake we accept what is and witness Self as connected to, and the same as Other. This is the place where it is possible to live life in an abiding state of unconditional acceptance that feels like love and is described with gratitude. Here we no longer play in greed, doubt or limitation or are described by our fearful actions. Awakening arises out of a direct personal relationship with the Divine Mystery.

Gini Gentry ~ www.ginigentry.com

Friday, January 30, 2009

DEFINITIONS: WORDS NEW CONCEPTS SERIES

I AM GOING TO START A SERIES TODAY CALLED DEFINITIONS: OLD WORDS NEW CONCEPTS

It’s important to learn the vocabulary that will support and enhance your character study for your new role in The Magical Theatre, so I suggest you make an effort to add three new definitions to your point of view each week.


51% Solution: When we undertake a serious spiritual practice we often mistakenly equate making it with reaching “enlightenment.” This goal seems so remote; the feeling of being overwhelmed can stifle our efforts. Life actually changes in an extraordinary way long before we catch sight of the Bodhi Tree. Efforts toward self-mastery can be likened to fighting an uphill battle with the 51% mark of the journey just over the crest of the hill of a bell curve. The last part of the climb is the steepest; and as exhaustion sets in before too long and it requires a huge act of will to reach the very top. But, everything changes at the crest for those who have persevered. At the peak, there is more mastery than not, more peace than not. To reach the top we must have assumed responsibility for our experience of life. We are now willing to see things as they are. We are now pulled by love, not motivated by fear. When our experience is more than half acceptable, the majority of our life seems blessed. When we are happy, it is easier to become happier. Now we have gravity on our side. It is impossible to feel powerless. At 51%, it is easeful to grow without the need for obstacles or an inflated ego as a propeller. Over the crest it is easy to witness the myth of our imperfection for the lie it is. This is the doorway for harmony with the extraordinary energy that guides all the forces within the Great Mystery.

Abuse of Power: Power in this context is the aberration of power that is glorified within a fear-based society. “One up and one down,” and “winners and losers” characterize it. Playing people against each other went out of style with the Machiavellians, but the subtleties still exist many places. Fear-based power emits a glamorous lure with its important trappings, and for a while the thrill will hide the pain. Don’t be confused; it is easy to become addicted to the use of this power or association with “powerful” people. Without judgment, it is important to see the truth of what is, not the emperor’s new clothes and what is fashionable to believe. Power is used most appropriately when it is circulated not accumulated.

Acceptance: Acceptance is the key to self-mastery so it is vital to remember we are each born whole and perfect without need for improvement. We cannot be the arbiters of this perfection for it exists outside of a limited dualistic perception. When we discard our egocentric motivation for others/circumstances/ourselves to change in a way we judge as correct before we can accept them/it/ourselves, we realign with our authentic nature and no longer tether our happiness to judgments and circumstances beyond our control.

Gini - www.ginigentry.com

Paths to Awakening: Part Two


It was a tremendous unburdening to accept that I no longer needed to use judgment as the way to play out my role in The Magical Theatre. Further more, as I looked back over my life, I saw how the “unfair" world of my “reality” had simply reflected my beliefs back to me, not created them. As my perception changed, so did my experience of the world around me. I came to understand that the secret to my happiness had been attached to my perceptions all along. In other words, if I thought of myself as a victim when I was having a “bad” experience, I would be miserable. I came to understand my perception arose out of my unaware habits instead of my conscious choice. When I was able to simply observe my circumstances, I could also see my choices. I could then choose not to suffer; I could choose to use my experiences as opportunities to learn and I could choose to accept myself even if I made mistakes.

Importantly, as I made new conscious choices, I was still “me.” I had not become a parody of a boring saint in white robes. I still had my big personality, big earrings and big hair! But instead of rejecting myself because of who I thought I should be, instead, I accepted the truth of who I really was behind the image.

After a long and difficult journey, I did finally come to peaceful terms with my destiny. By eliminating my need to feel superior to the truth of who I feared I was/was not, I reached a d├ętente in my war with judgment. I came to know the greater truth about myself and I was set free from my victimhood. And, perhaps more importantly, when it became OK to be me, it naturally followed that everyone and everything else was OK too.

Through acceptance I finally came to know love and it didn’t look at all like I had expected! The quality of love in this context was a radical departure from the conditional love I had known. To experience this love did not require a stimulus of “loveable attributes” or “lovable actions” occurring outside myself; in fact, this love without conditions required nothing more than my own willingness to simply allow everything to be exactly as it was.

Through the great clarity of hindsight I saw that there were a great many things I had misunderstood about my role in this grand passion play of the The Magical Theatre. I’d forgotten that I was not just the lead actor but also the playwright of my own dramatic production. Because of this, I had narrowly interpreted the fantasy, and created a life directed by fear and choreographed by the voices in my head.

Those voices, my supporting cast and critics, had been so influential that they had helped me create a myth about everything and everyone in my life. Everyone does this, but hardly anyone calls it by its proper name, “projection.” Without awareness of the truth, I got into the habit of blaming others for my pain. Casting responsibility for my painful emotions onto others gave me the false impression of relief, but I remained blind and not in charge. I was sitting under a spotlight in the middle of all Creation with my eyes tightly shut.
………………………………………………………………………………………...

You too may be sitting in the middle of the stage with your eyes closed but, I have no way of knowing where you are in your circumstances, or the degree to which you have unwittingly embraced your role in Maya’s Magical Theatre. If you have already figured out that everything you have purchased, every relationship you have pursued, every obstacle you have avoided, and every attempt you have made to find happiness from a source outside of yourself has failed, you are on the right track… but I am getting ahead of myself. To really unveil how the Magical Theatre is constructed and to learn how we’ve come to assume our roles in it, I must begin in the place of beginnings... DEFINITIONS: OLD WORDS NEW CONCEPTS


Paths to Awakening: Part One


There are as many paths to awakening as there are humans who follow them. This blog is about the path I have taken. Your Path will no doubt differ slightly, or terrifically, and it will be defined by its singularity. No matter the differences or contradictions, we are of the same essence. The differences that appear to distinguish us are only a reflection of the roles we have chosen to play in Maya's Magical Theatre that we call life. So I simply offer you my experience as a guide-not a new set of rules-to the choices that may still await you.

Your life is your play. It is your personal production, therefore, only you can decide in the deepest place of truth what is needed and what is not. To begin your discovery, you must honestly determine if you have cast yourself in a lesser role than the one you came to play. More than likely you have answered yes. This is not the time for despair, the truth is liberating! Knowing you are the power behind your choices, also means you have the ability to change it all any time you choose.

For a long time I was disconnected from my choices and I assumed that everyone—at least those that mattered—thought and felt as I did. I had no idea what projection meant, but if I had, I’d have been sure it had nothing to do with me. I was certain that reality was concrete and indisputable, unrelated to my personal point of view. I was proud to be a perfectionist, happy to maintain control over all situations, and delighted to rescue friends while ignoring or unaware of the part they played in creating their own dramatic predicaments.

As it has turned out, my idea of truth was a limited, sugarcoated version of my opinion, unconsciously contrived to keep me safe while supporting my favorite self-image. Politically, I was interested in human rights; socially, I railed against the injustices of my girlfriends’ romantic relationships. Personally, I saw bad luck and bad karma at the core of my discontent. Frankly, I was reactionary and entertaining perceptions tainted by my past experiences. I was proud to be a victim of life, for it implied that I lived in an unfair world and was not a bad person. I didn’t know I was living my life on autopilot. I was proud of what I called my discernment and mortified when I encountered the pain and fear that fed its existence.

I distinctly remember the first time I realized that my so-called powers of discernment were a cover up for the way I denied my judgment. I was walking through the local grocery store when I suddenly caught the voices in my head red-handed! They were busily engaged in their usual commentary concerning the dress code of my fellow shoppers, the size and look of their bodies and how their children were behaving. I was mortified when I saw the extent of the chatter in my mind.

I finally gave up when a particularly unclean woman with rollers in her hair stepped up to a nearby line. I had to drop my gaze to the floor to get a grip on my toxic reactions. For a long time after that, whenever I went to the grocery store I would have to look at my feet just to keep from judging. Strange as it may seem, that grocery store was where I drew my first line in the sand.

I spent many years with ever-increasing awareness trying to change my habits, grumbling about my judgments, judging my judgments and condemning myself for making what I judged at the time to be very slow progress. The one day, in fact years later, the most peculiar thing happened; I realized I had, for all intents and purposes stopped my judgments. My realization was not preceded by the sound of one single trumpet. There was nary an angel and no burning bushes. I was steady on my feet, not levitating, not in a state of bliss.

I was mystified. The voices that had dominated my mind throughout most of my life had somehow slipped away so quietly I had missed their exit. More than this, they were replaced with a growing awareness that things simply are. It was a great unburdening to accept that I no longer needed to measure events or people against the yardstick of what or how I wanted them to be. To be continued…