Spirit of Thanksgiving Revisited

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Thanksgiving gives us time to pause and reflect on the spirit of the season, count our blessings, and meditate on gratitude. As a fellow human, I feel especially thankful for our home, Mother Earth. At times, I have taken Her for granted and I am sorry for it. If it wasn’t for Her presence in our lives, none of us would be here. And if I hadn’t been given the gift of Her presence in my life, my experience here would have been very different, and not as enriching to say the least.

Contemplation on how my life would be different in Earth’s absence yields a plentiful harvest of gain in my appreciation for Her bounty. It also deepens my feelings of gratitude for this lifetime living on this planet. As spiritual beings having human experiences, we are expanding souls so it is natural to desire abundance in its variety of forms. But we miss the boat when we forget to acknowledge our blessings and gratitude for what is.

How might your life be different if Earth had never entered into your lives, or had certain people, places or things not entered into your experiences?

I’ll admit it, I have my moments of heaviness at times. Even though I have been looked upon as a brother from another planet, like the rest of you, I have my fears and worries. It’s so easy to time travel to the past or back to the future, and get lost in those projections. How does one not get stuck in the intersections between the voices of trauma, resentful bitterness, rose colored glasses or nostalgia? Our suffering is in the clinging for one state over another. We wish this misery would be over or this happiness would never end.

Thanksgiving is no exception, as it is a holiday that serves up a feast of mixed messages and conflictual emotional memories. Personally, Thanksgiving is my favorite mainstream holiday. But I don’t deify or demonize the Pilgrims or minimize, gloss over the genocide of Indigenous people, ignore the existence of this land before the current occupation, nor the slavery that existed then or the other forms of oppression that exist today. An authentic look at this holiday and still feeling gratitude for its totality is a lot to digest, and get be both bitter and sweet to the taste, depending on your attitude.

Admittedly, I welcome the relatively less emphasized market driven consumerism of Thanksgiving – at least compared to some others. Specifically, I’m learning to tame my own gluttony at the annual feast without defiance. Every year I walk away from the table pleasantly full even after eating less than the year before. It has taken me a long time to realize that softening the will is not about going hungry or selling out. Thankfully, I’m turning a corner on that front.

Beyond its polarities, Thanksgiving is about the intrinsic spiritual alchemy of being mindful of having an attitude of gratitude for what is and the gift of presence. When we are in this place, we win on the inside and everyone one around us is impacted in a positive light. And yet, this real realm of personal discovery is not without a new world of anxiety because anxiety is a fact of life. When I think of Thanksgiving and Turkey, I think about the spirit of shared blessings that feathers a ripple effect of reciprocity.

In my own experiences with anxiety, I would be lying if I denied that they sometimes ruffle my feathers. These days, my own OCD experiences have evolved (or devolved depending on your perspective ) into being mindful of my breath, and cracking puns – sometimes at oft color times of heightened nervous woodland creature energy. In fact, the puns fall quite autumnatically like acorns during this time of year or rise like the tides on Full Moons especially. Like most people, it’s pretty impossible to not find myself preoccupied with much ado about nothing, if only fleetingly, in the theatre of life. The trick is to not hang out too long in that space or chase thoughts with overly indulgent reactions.

For certain, you could charge me with being guilty of a coyote like subtle (or not so subtle) wry grin on my face, even when I should mirror a more serious affect or otherwise apropos facial expression to match the situation at hand. It’s hard not to be provocative when you are naturally wired for having a propensity for the theatrics or know when to say when during the interplay between wisdom and folly. Tricks that were once treats no longer work anymore. Some call it growing up, while others say they’re younger than that now. Awakening is a process, as is supporting the awakening of others.

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Truth is, it isn’t always easy to differentiate between where con artistry begins and true wizardry ends – whether it’s working with adolescent girls or my own observational self-examination. But that’s OK, communication with Blue Jay reveals a general sense of acceptance and non-judgement in this area of personal growth. Besides, the royal road to authenticity is paved with fool’s gold in footsteps that have a tendency to fake it till you make it. Walking the line isn’t about being perfect. It’s about floundering, making mistakes and failure. These are elements of Growth Mindset. Nature is such a powerful teacher. That’s why psychologists agree that the best laboratory is the naturalistic environment. May we embrace our imperfections.

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These days, it can be more challenging for the Ordinary Joe not to get sucked into his own alternate realities, escapism, carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders or the dramas of others. The dying stages of the systemic patriarchy makes it hard not to do that. You all know about the impact of FOMO, peer pressure, social media profiling, and the garden variety of distractions. Today’s outer distractions have more bells and whistles. But at the end of the day, we have the power to turn the background noise into bells of mindfulness.

Remember that the world is a reflection of art imitating reality. Today, it’s probably easier to play the blame game, considering the myriad of conveniently inconvenient excuses flitting out and about in this world of 10,000 things. We are conditioned to point our fingers at targets of our own suffering. Alas, we shop around at those deeply engrained establishments, fixed ideas notwithstanding!

Learning to be human has never been easy. We all need good strategies.

But in this pandemic, have we forgotten how to be human in the social environment?

Speaking of Target, if you find yourself in a situation where there isn’t a prepackaged box readily available on the shelf, is this an apparent invitation for throwing a public temper tantrum, having a panic attack over the missing object of affection, serial text people to come to your rescue, or perhaps indulging in a private negative self talk episode?

Might these moments otherwise be worth self reflecting on as an attachment to a desired outcome, and could instead become a playground for spiritual growth?

Are they repetitive, unconscious behavioral traps or an awakened state of awareness that are just waiting to come out and play in the sunlight?

The reality is that we have to work at our wellbeing, mental health and social emotional learning. Yeah, you can argue that you have the right to be rude to a grocery store worker because they mixed up your items and placed them in the wrong bags, cite that you are a paying customer, and therefore justified in the attitudinal feast you served up to the grocer. However, that is an entitled position that eats a hearty plate of suffering by being part of the problem rather than part of the solution. Being entitled is a form of victim consciousness. You lose from that perspective because it is a recipe for more suffering.

For example, just look at the profiteering of this nuance in the popular culture and so called alternative media forms. There’s a romantic libertarian defund the police sentiment, a welfare state of dirty energy, liberal greed in the marketplace and conservative fighting over the people’s right to quality healthcare, which includes preventative care, mental health and substance abuse/addictions treatment. There’s a constant slugfest between philosophical differences or belief systems. Whether it’s Critical Race Theory or Civil Rights Team – some people are triggered by the CRT acronym. Take the fight out of it folks. Give inner peace a chance. There is enough and we can all win.

Instead of challenging, connect. We need connection now more than ever on our Planet today. It would be wonderful if Divine Intervention happens. I do believe a faction of extraterrestrial beings and highly spiritually evolved multidimensional beings are concerned about our survival and are doing their part to support our transformation, and probably planning something more exponential as we speak. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if the powers that be are plotting and scheming to counter that with commercials that attempt to hoodwink us into buying into a feigned invasion that fronts as an alien takeover. But in reality, the Military-Industrial Complex’s potential smoke and mirrors campaign will likely be orchestrated and manufactured from our own advanced engineering of foreign technology. We shall see.

What can each of us do in the meantime?

What kind of energy do we want to attract?

Clean energy on the inside is a parallel process to clean energy on the outside. Developing a meditation practice helps bring equanimity into your soul and the collective soul respectively. If you don’t see empathy in the world around you, become the change of empathy you want to see in the world by seeing it in your mind and feeling it in your heart. See it in yourself and see it in others, especially in your so called enemies. Some have to work harder at this than others.

Connect with the animals, nature and your fellow humans. Connect with you Higher Self. Connect with Spirit. Connect with your Spirit Guides. They all want to connect with you, and we all need connection.

We humans cannot afford to take each other for granted anymore or view ourselves as separate from each another. The only real way out of our suffering is through a meditative mindful way of life. It is only through this inner work that we can heal our soul wounds that manifest in our outer world. At the end of the day, everything else is just cosmetic. Easier said than done.

Awareness is the first step. We have to acknowledge whatever it is that needs to change by starting with ourselves. That takes courage because, in doing so, you will experience what psychologists call cognitive dissonance. Through meditation, we can learn to sit with the tension of opposites, or the interplay between what we call preferred and non-preferred experiences.

Remember, we are all mirrors for each other and the signs are there for you to see if you take notice. I have a coworker friend that just bought a new sweatshirt that says, “HEAVILY MEDITATED.” That’s a nice playful, light-hearted mantra to sport on an article of clothing.

Together, may we learn to live in the present moment, regardless of how unknown or uncertain it is. Besides, there are no guarantees, so we might as well come down into our souls and take up residence in the here and now. May we give thanks for that.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone,

Ari

Having An Attitude of Gratitude

I heard someone say recently that the holidays are whatever you make of them.
Isn’t that true about everyday life?

In America, we are moving further into the season know as the holidays.
This time of year serves up mixed feelings for our culture,
which reflects the sign of the tumultuous times
we are living in on the planet at large.

And there are is a deeper and higher multidimensional Universe at play,
a vibration we have always been a part of – a reality more of us are waking up to.

More people are opening their eyes to the sacred ways of Nature,
yet others are walking around with eyes wide shut.
Still, others are losing their minds, checking out,
killing themselves or killing others.

In the pain and suffering, there is great tragedy

We in the modern Western world have been conditioned to destroy.
Just look at the medical model, and the Military-Industrial Complex.

But awakening to our “better angels”,
allows us to use our shadow sides as spirit guides to move through the darkness
so that we can move through the gateways of transformation.

This is a guiding light

You might think to yourself that “getting older sucks”,
and be seduced by the temptation to glorify youth culture,
and look on the good old days through the lens of nostalgia.

We are like the seasons, and we go through changes accordingly.
As such, Old Man Winter has shown himself by bringing us snow.

We have officially crossed the mid-point between the Autumn equinox,
and are moving closer to the darkest day of the year on the Winter solstice.

But that gives us an opportunity to look forward to our days getting a little longer,
and filling our hearts with a little more light everyday until the Vernal equinox in March,
when light and dark energies will be equal again.

Or maybe you’re hard on yourself about your transgressions,
or about how you’ve hurt others. With the holidays coming,
a Full Moon on its way, and Mercury in retrograde, the temptation to focus
on getting depressed about the past or anxious about the future grows.

But if you consciously meditate on the spiritual energy of Turkey,
then you can awaken your spiritual eyes to see abundance all around you,
and stuff yourself with an attitude of gratitude in your heart for the shared blessings that exist today,
and everyday really. And if you find your energy field depleted or consumed
by the energy of others, you can picture a turkey to help you ward of those negative energies.

Stay grounded, and connect to the roots of the Earth.
Drink lots of water, eat whole foots, and exercise in a way that you “don’t sweat the small stuff.”
Be gentle on yourself, look for the silver lining, and make positive interpretations.
Leave it to a Full Beaver Moon to give you the industry you need to design
new internal structures inside yourself to give you the
spiritual power you need to rise up to the challenges that you face.

Beaver can help you find alternative pathways that you might not have even known were there.
Then, if you notice a new way of doing something, give that more of your attention.
Novelty is good, but repetition can be a good thing too.

Old habits may die-hard.

But new ways of doing things are ready to spring forth!

Till we tweet again peeps,

Ari

Thanksgiving Revisited

Thanksgiving is a popular holiday in modern world American tradition
There are strong connections to turkeys . . .

Our ancestors also shared spiritual blessings with Turkey energy

Whether it’s this national holiday, or just another day like any other . . .

The preludes and epilogues surrounding these events
can be challenging scripts to co-author,
especially when dysfunctional relationship situations
are brought to the table!

But if you awaken to an attitude of gratitude for whatever
brilliantly disguised blessings might clandestinely otherwise fly below
tree lines without deeper examination . . .

Perhaps you will give yourself permission to lighten up your energy field
by not taking someone else’s apparent insanity personally

There is personal freedom in realizing that whatever you eat or do not eat,
there is violence in every breath you take

For even in breathing, there is taking life to sustain life

While traversing into the dark night of our souls . . .

We might as well lighten up our energy fields in the spirit
of feathering away any negative energies that try to seduce us into gobbling up
obsessions of feeling like dirty birds with sick stomachs of guilt and shame

In spite of close encounters of painful tragedies that land in everyday spaces . . .
Listen carefully to echoes of celestial music that sing your soul down to Earth

Let Turkey’s spiritual eyes inspire you to fee thankful for all forms of abundance!

It’s good to notice the moments of their arrival
landing in your field of consciousness this week

See you along the trails,

Ari

Shared Blessings with Turkey

Earth Eagle serves up inspiration to give back
to our Mother during these
shared blessings of harvest season

Turkey’s death sustains our lives
Digesting gratitude for their sacrifices
is good food for deeply thankful thought

A dying old world programs us to buy into
a mantra that pushes us to acquire and get ahead
But when we try to use force to ends by justifying means
We are saying that we don’t trust the Universe to give us what we need

Meditation on Turkey reminds us to walk with secured footing
Reflecting our own adaptable nature
by roosting in different locations in the dirge of night
Let us be mindful of what dreams might come into our material realm

Building a New Earth with Turkey
Gives birth to win-win co-creative possibilities

Why not wake up expecting synchronicity?

Seasons change gradually
Transitions feel more gentle when weathered
like a slowly dripping spigot

Are you appreciating the subtleties of larger changes to come?

A resurrection of the Golden Rule
Awakens a place where the Higher Self meets Collective Consciousness
We gather in a theatrical convergence of egalitarian harmony
Birds of a feather flocking together

Do you see that what is good for the goose is good for the gander?

Yes squirrels get angry about turkeys stealing their Winter stockpiles
But we can dig on the symbolism of nuts and acorns
In mining our souls to burn clean energy
We unearth hidden wisdom and seeds of growth

Visions from our Third Eyes welcomes
abundant arrivals of feminine energies
She has strength in Her numbers
It takes a formidable systemic empire to hold us back
But that need not make us public enemy number one

Remember that we are all One
Cut from the same cloth
Though diverse expressions

Steer clear from fear-based peddlers of divisive images of hatred
to the out of tune choir of Ebola, ISIS, War on Terror
and Police free indictments chimes in with
arrested development of self-preservation
Ferguson is a magnifying mirror of an American horror show

Occupy Critical Mass

How smart are you at being lulled into a hypnotic trance
by mediums of advanced technologic distractions?

May we gracefully allow Turkey’s spirit guide us in
warding off negative energies
that feed off our souls
So that we are light on our feet

See you further on up the trails,

Ari

Venturing Down Old Roads With New Neurons

After overindulging in food, drink and enjoying the fuel injected Detroit Lions atypically route another team on national television, my wife and I ventured to a reunion. En route down Thunder Road, a dynamic mix of 90s background music conjured up nostalgia from that era, juxtaposed with Billy Joel’s Scenes from an Italian Restaurant danced on in my mind.

When we got to town, we made a pit stop to eat at a local pizzeria that features authentic pizza. In the spirit of life being like one big surprise birthday party, we recognized old friends for an unscripted encounter. It wasn’t Mystic Pizza, but we enjoyed a heavenly slice of conversational exchange on life’s happenings and where are they now. This is a good time of year to come down into our souls and revisit our past connections, if only in other areas of consciousness like our dreams, visions and imaginations. Of course, being present is easy to avoid these days with the emphasis on virtual social media, 24 hour shopping, playing with gadgets and other distractions. While reconnecting in a physical way can be especially anxiety provoking, underneath that rock is an opportunity to breathe new air into old relationships and connections. While I can appreciate bowing out gracefully from old relationships that appear stale and toxic, it was also a great energetic opportunity to re-work and transform. My heart is pleasantly full from that.

In much the same way as the good n’ plenty of our citizenry, High School years were an interesting experience. In the dancing and mingling, we celebrated diversity in unity during our cross-constellation exchanges. Right Tao, isn’t everything old new again? Bearing witness to a theatrical cast of characters – it was music to my ears to see that girls just want to have fun . . . but be careful because the floor is slippery when wet! I was in my element – trying my best to be mindful of organic opportunities to connect with peeps from back in the day. In my estimation, we consumed a co-creative venue to see old friends and breathe in fresh air. For yours truly, talking football with some old teammates was poetry in motion and a welcome nightcap. In the spirit of that, an old teammate gave me a bear hug that would have left any star NFL thoroughbred inundated.

Looking back, I walked away from the experience with the wisdom that you know you love your soul mate in their rank and beauty when you can laugh again at idiosyncrasies that once drove you nuts. In true Hollywood fashion, the romantic ideal of finding your soul mate reads like a Utopian fairy tale with a happy ending. But the reality of taking a road trip together and sharing balanced conversation without the aid of technological audio to fill in the airwaves is music to my ears. When we can authentically gaze upon our partner with the viewpoint that we are mirrors for an other’s soul development, we bear witness to As Good as it Gets.

In learning to live on Earth in this way, I am thankful for the infinite spirited blessings of this season. Tis the season to meditate on gratitude and letting go as we embark toward the darkest night of the forthcoming Winter Solstice. And while it is natural to over-indulge during this time, it is also a good time to clean out.

Be Well,

Ari