Monthly Meditation Themes

 

At the beginning of every month, TRIUNE members receive an electronic newsletter which also includes a seed thought for meditation. If they choose, members are encouraged to incorporate these thoughts into their own daily meditation routines. Meditation themes are usually seasonal and/or address a specific topic or situation needing immediate attention. Please feel free to join us in meditative focus.

 


 

March 2015

 

Tasha Halpert's "astro-planner" for the month of March is now posted on our website if you'd like to have a look. Astrologically, March appears to be a potentially volatile month. It is also the time of the equinox on March 20th. According to WIKIPEDIA, an equinox occurs when "the plane of the Earth's equator passes the center of the Sun. At that instant, the tilt of the Earth's axis neither inclines away from nor towards the Sun." The equinox has always suggested balance, especially the subtle balance in the great struggle between the forces of darkness and the forces of Light.For this month of March, therefore, it seems appropriate that we meditate upon the subject of balance in all its manifestations -- in our personal lives, in our group work through TRIUNE, and in the greater cosmic sense.

We all know how important it is to maintain a sense of balance in our lives. These days, as we rush from one obligation to another, we often finds ourselves commenting that we feel out-of-balance, either physically, emotionally, mentally or spiritually. Time spent on one task takes our attention away from another. We may find it hard to balance all our mundane responsibilities with the time we wish to spend on our spiritual studies and work. Negative news from around the world may upset our emotional balance. Trying to process the enormous amount of information with which we are daily bombarded can leave us mentally out of sorts. Any number of personal obligations and struggles assail us every day at home and work, all threatening the delicate balancing act we're all required to perform these days.

A few newsletters ago, we talked about Taoism and "going with the flow" of life. Finding balance, the so-called "Middle Way" in all things, is a large part of Taoist teachings. There is a lovely saying attributed to Taoism that may help us as a seed thought in our meditations this month about balance:

Allow yourself to yield
and you can stay centered.
Allow yourself to bend
and you will stay straight.

Throughout any storms that may assail you in March....may you always stay straight. Much Love and Light to all.

 

February 2015

 

Here in the northeastern United States, we are in the very middle of our winter season. February is windy and cold. It's often overcast, wet and snowy. While outside sloshing through muddy puddles of water, trudging through knee-deep piles of snow, or brushing against dirty and salt-stained cars and other fixtures, it's easy to get frustrated and annoyed by this sometimes trying season. But winter, like everything else, also has a beautiful side...and thus, it seems fitting to further examine this idea of "beauty" in our February meditations. For beauty exists everywhere and in everyone and every thing, if we only know how to see it.

The poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe once said that everyone should "hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of life, in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul." It's certainly true that certain forms of music, literature and artwork can be beautiful, uplifting and awe-inspiring. So yesterday, weary of the winter weather, we visited a small art gallery to try to shake off the winter doldrums.

The paintings and sculptures at the museum were certainly beautiful; but there was also much beauty to be found all around us...in the wonder and laughter of several small children visiting a museum for the very first time; in the gentle and patient smiles of parents guiding the little ones and explaining the exhibits; in the joyful smiles of museum staff, eager to share their interest in and love of art treasures with others. But the examples of beauty did not end when we left the atmosphere of the art museum.

Back in our car, we sat for a few moments in the parking lot to watch a man training his new puppy to walk on a leash. Patiently, he repeatedly walked a few feet up and down the pavement next to the parking lot, helping the puppy to understand the concept of the leash. There was a great beauty in the palpable love this man felt for the little creature in his care. The fact that dirty piles of snow lined the city sidewalk didn't diminish that beauty one bit.

Driving home, beauty was all around us....in the quiet farm fields; in the stands of pine trees we passed and the ice-covered creeks we crossed; in the flocks of geese we saw and occasional hawks we were lucky to spy sitting on the overhead electrical wires or tree branches. When we got home and walked in the door, beauty could be felt in the warmth of our house and in the serenity and security of once again being surrounded by all our familiar things.

In a world where we are constantly bombarded by stimuli, are connected 24/7 to electronic devices, are privy to information -- often of an ugly and disturbing nature -- streaming into our eyes and ears and minds from all corners of the globe at all times of the day and night, it is sometimes hard to see the beauty that surrounds us in even the most mundane situations. But it is of the utmost importance that we do. Appreciation of beauty is one of many paths to the Highest. And so, for the month of February, let's ponder this concept of beauty in our periods of quiet reflection and meditation.

 

November / December 2014

 

Here in the United States, the last week of November is when we celebrate our American Thanksgiving holiday. Giving thanks, therefore would seem to be a logical choice for a meditation theme for this month. But as I thought about this, the idea of "gratitude" came to my mind. These two terms -- thankfulness and gratitude -- are often used interchangeably; however, it seems to me that they are two different things.

Many Americans are fortunate and are thankful for things that aren't readily available in many other countries: relatively clean air and clean water; a refrigerator full of healthy foods; access to education and health care; freedom to choose our own religion and to vote for our preferred political candidates. Thankfulness, however, seems most comfortable on the physical plane, when dealing with the mundane, for it sometimes even has a tinge of (dare I say it?) selfishness attached to it. How often have you heard others say (or even said yourself) something like the following?

"Thank goodness that car didn't hit us!"
"I'm so thankful that my hospital test results were negative!"
"Thank God the storm missed us completely."
"I am so thankful the boss didn't include me in the layoffs."

Gratitude, on the other hand, carries with it a warmth, a spiritual joy, a sense of giving back. When we express gratitude, we can feel that warm spot in our own heart connecting to the heart of the other person. Whereas we are so often thankful for those things which make our persons and lives easier or more comfortable, we send gratitude to others with a sense of sharing, of unselfishly giving something of ourselves. Gratitude has a more refined vibratory rate and speaks to the spiritual nature. If we pay attention, we can feel it pouring forth FROM us, going out to the other.

The American writer William Faulkner once said: Gratitude is a quality similar to electricity. It must be produced and discharged and used up in order to exist at all. I would suggest that through the month of November, we meditate upon the meaning of this energy called gratitude...and see where it takes us.

 

September, 2014

 

The Labor Day holiday marks the unofficial end of the summer season. Although there is still almost a month of summer left, after Labor Day the beaches and resorts empty, swimming pools close, the kids go back to school and college, and employees return to work in earnest after the more leisurely days of summer. Of all the times of the year, the end of the Labor Day holiday seems to signal CHANGE in a very big way. And so, in our meditation periods for the month of September, it seems fitting to address the issue of change.

Everyday life is full of changes, big and small -- births of new family members and deaths of others; starting a new job or being let go from an old, cherished one; moving into a new home; marriages and divorces; financial successes and failures; elation and depression; periods of health and dealing with illness. Change can be refreshing and uplifting or difficult and frightening.

It's often hard to see things clearly when embroiled in the chaotic throes of change, whether that change is thrust upon us without our consent or is something we've instigated ourselves. However, if we look back upon all the significant changes we've experienced over the years, one thing is certain: we survive the change. If necessary, we adjust and we adapt, often we flourish and are better for it; but eventually we move on, and the change which seemed such a momentous thing at one time becomes another memory from the past.

Society as a whole is also changing, and as we deal with the small, everyday changes in our personal lives, we also play a part in the larger, more far-reaching cultural changes humanity experiences on a cyclical basis. Those of us who understand this are in a position to help others who may be struggling to cope and adjust to the changes not only in their own personal lives, but also to those societal changes which may confuse or frighten them. As a seed thought for this month's periods of meditation, we might use the following:

God never shuts one door without opening another.

It matters not whether we use the term "God" or the Universe, or simply the energy of life, karma, or however we perceive the great primordial Fountainhead of all existence. It doesn't change the essence of the message. No matter how violently or abruptly we've had a door slammed in our faces, EVENTUALLY another door of opportunity will appear. It is up to us to find the insight to recognize it and the courage to then open it and go forward.

 

August, 2014

 

Half the year is now over, and that's always a good time to assess how things have been going. Global news has been distressing lately, to say the least, especially with tensions high between Russian and Ukraine, all-out war between Israel and Hamas, the shooting and crash of the Malaysian commercial jetliner over Ukraine, reports of a spreading and deadly ebola outbreak in Africa, floods and earthquakes in many areas, wildfires in our western United States and much more. Other issues, like continuing high unemployment and low wages, stock market volatility, environmental concerns, political corruption and more simmer in the background, a continuing concern for millions worldwide. While 2013 seemed to be a year of personal crisis for many, 2014 is shaping up to be a year of crisis on a much larger scale.

In 2013, many of us dealt with family, health and employment issues. We seemed to be balancing a good bit of personal karma. This year, it seems as though we are being called upon to pay attention to our collective karmic debt; and perhaps 2014 is a year when humanity as a whole must balance a large portion of it. Every crisis, no matter how heartbreaking, is an opportunity to do just that. All of the global sorrow and tragedy we seem to be witnessing and/or directly experiencing this year may be easier to handle if we view it as an opportunity for humanity to move forward -- to clear out the old in order to make way for the new. Doing so gives us great hope for a better future for everyone on the planet. As a seed thought for meditation on this very thing during the month of August, we can think of the words of Nelson Mandela:

Our human compassion binds us one to the other -- not in pity or patronizingly -- but as human beings who have learned how to turn our common suffering into hope for the future.

 

July 2014

 

Friday, July 4th, is our American Independence Day, when we commemorate the formation of our country as a sovereign state. It is a day when Americans typically put aside their political differences and grievances and gratefully celebrate all that is good about our democratic way of life. It brings to mind as a theme for our July meditations the word "freedom." Freedom is much in the news these days, as we watch events unfold in Syria, Iraq, Ukraine and many other places. It seems that all over the world, people hunger for personal freedom and the right to make their own choices over such things as their religion, education, occupation, political leadership and more.

Human beings seem to naturally yearn for freedom. Just as food gives our physical body sustenance, freedom feeds our Soul; and the more connected we feel with our own Higher Self, the harder it is for us to happily exist if we are denied freedom -- to our physical body, to our emotional nature or to our higher mind. Hopefully, this global yearning for freedom is a sign that humanity is moving forward in its spiritual development, is remembering its Divine nature and origins and is realizing that freedom is a natural right for every being.

In a letter to one of her students in 1936, Helena Roerich wrote of the human yearning for freedom and, equally, for knowledge:

The time is approaching when all those who can bring a grain of the true Knowledge will be sought. Where everything was taken away, where all creativity was suffocated, where human dignity was forgotten, there especially powerfully will be awakened, and is already awakening, the thirst for knowledge and for true freedom.

But freedom, in order not to degenerate into licentiousness, must be tempered with a pure and unselfish heart. As Helena Roerich said: Freedom, this bird of paradise, sings only in pure hearts liberated from their only jailer, whose name is Selfishness. As we meditate upon the theme of freedom this month, let us keep our hearts open and pure. We can bathe with thought-forms of freedom those places around the globe where citizens yearn for it. For those of us fortunate enough to live in free societies, may we take advantage of this great opportunity we have been given this incarnation and selflessly contribute in whatever small way we can to humanity's thirst for both knowledge and freedom.

 

March 2014

 

Here in the United States, we are still in a deep freeze, thanks to the "polar vortex," that catchy phrase being thrown around to describe the dip in the prevailing jet stream that is pushing cold, arctic air down through a good portion of the country. It's been a particularly bitter cold and snowy winter. Needless to say, everyone is extremely eager to see this winter end.

February was a particularly troublesome month for most people. The extreme weather conditions caused delays, cancellations and a general sense of frustration for millions who often struggled to get to work or school and simply accomplish necessary daily tasks. It drained everyone's energy and pocketbooks as well, as the loss of work hours and high heating costs took a toll on businesses and individuals alike. Our family was no exception. It seemed that every time we tried to do anything, another obstacle stood in our way. Sometimes, out of sheer frustration, we tried to forcefully make circumstances work in our favor. But just as we had suspected, no amount of effort on our part seemed to change a thing. Because so many days were filled with conditions beyond our control, there was often nothing to do but simply wait and....be. But simply being in the moment is not an easy concept for most of us westerners to practice. Thus, February turned out to be a great teacher in the lesson of letting go and "going with the flow."

Going with the flow is a term we westerners often use to describe some of the key concepts described in Taoism. For the month of March, perhaps it would be helpful for us in our periods of meditation to ponder this one concept that is associated with Taoism -- the idea of letting go, being in the moment, not forcing circumstances to our will, and simply accepting that which comes along. As a seed thought for meditation, we present a few sayings attributed to Lao Tzu, the mystic who is said to have compiled the teachings which make up the philosophy of Taoism.

The sanest man
Sets up no deed,
Lays down no law,
Takes everything that happens as it comes,
As something to animate, not to appropriate,
To earn, not to own,
To accept naturally without self-importance.

The best captain does not plunge headlong,
Nor is the best soldier a fellow hot to fight.
The greatest victor wins without a battle.

Nature does not have to insist,
Can blow for only half a morning,
Rain for only half a day.
If nature does not have to insist,
Why should man?

 

February 2014

 

Successful spiritual aspirants seem to be those who have a strong sense of perseverance...sometimes against seemingly insurmountable odds. The great American football coach, Vince Lombardi, once said: "Once you learn to quit, it becomes a habit." Successful spiritual aspirants never develop this habit of quitting. They meet head-on each obstacle as it appears and keep moving forward, well aware that many more obstacles are surely just around the corner. As Helen Keller once said: "A bend in the road is not the end of the road...unless you fail to make the turn." Successful spiritual aspirants always, courageously and with great perseverance, make that next turn.

Additionally, while mindful of their own problems, successful spiritual aspirants continue to quietly, selflessly, lovingly work in service for others, putting others' needs well ahead of their own. There may be times when this beautiful, compassionate, inner strength falters. However, it never completely fails.

For the month of February, therefore, in our meditation periods let's ponder this concept of perseverance. How far can it take us in 2014? What strength and support can we gain from our connections to each other? How will maintaining perseverance and courage in this incarnation help us in our future spiritual development? Just how much perseverance do we need to continue our spiritual work and our commitment to others? How do you personally maintain your path of perseverance? As a seed thought for meditation, we can consider what John Quincy Adams, sixth president of the United States, might have meant when he said the following:

"Patience and perseverance have a magical effect, before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish."

 

January 2014

 

Every January, with every turn of the calendar page to January 1, we naturally think back on the past year, with all its joys and sorrows, achievements and unfinished business. It's a time to mull it all over and file away the bits and pieces for future reference. Accordingly, we also begin to look ahead to the fresh new year, lying there in front of us like an open book, with all its exciting possibilities and, hopefully, not too many frustrating challenges. As we wind down one year and look ahead to another, the very nature of the season leads us to think long and hard about the concept of "change." Just think of all those New Year's "resolutions" that people are making today, promising themselves to change something for the better in 2014!

We are so often told that change is a good thing and something we should not only acknowledge, but accept with graciousness and deep gratitude. Charles Darwin once said that it isn't the strongest or most intelligent of species that survive -- it's the one most adaptable to change. Well, true enough, and thanks for the advice, Chuck....but to be brutally honest, for most of us no matter our age or circumstances, change is so much easier to talk about than to do. We may KNOW we need it, but change is hard and scary and goes against our very nature to stay the course, even if the route has become unbearably uncomfortable. To leave a bad relationship, a stagnant job, an unhappy living arrangement or any number of other unproductive situations, for example, may seem the healthiest and most logical alternative; but it doesn't lessen the fear, anxiety or sadness that may accompany such a change or reduce the uncertainty that lies ahead in an entirely different situation.

On the other hand, change has its bright moments that, more often than not, quickly improve our mood and outlook. Once we commit ourselves to it, change is usually also a happy and exciting event.And in the bigger scheme of things, new faces and places, new ways of working and living, new challenges and obstacles are all opportunities for learning, expansion and growth. These may be on the physical, emotional, mental or spiritual levels....or maybe even all four.

So for the month of January, let's focus our meditative moments on the subject of change. Lao Tzu said, "Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let things flow naturally forward."

What are YOUR thoughts on change and the experiences you have had when change -- whether you consciously wanted it or not -- became inevitable. How did you handle it? What, if anything, did it teach you about yourself and Life in general? Send us an email. Your comments are most welcome and appreciated.

 

 

November 2013

 

Here in the United States, November is when we celebrate our Thanksgiving holiday; and so the idea of "giving thanks" is much on our minds through this whole month. With all the negative news we seem to hear from around the world, it's often difficult to focus on those things for which we can be thankful. And if we also have personally been dealing with major life issues and difficulties through much of the year, it becomes even harder. Yet if we stop to ponder, we see that it's often the seemingly "smallest" things that have been making a positive difference in our lives through all the trials and chaos. Perhaps these are the things on which it is helpful to concentrate and for which we can be truly grateful. For it's often only in hindsight that we realize just how much we had to be thankful for....only we never even noticed it at the time.

There is an old Jewish tale that illustrates this perfectly, and I paraphrase it here:

When King David was a boy watching over his father's flock of sheep, he often came upon spider webs strung across tree branches and shining in the sun. He thought the webs were beautiful to look upon, but couldn't see any real, practical use for them. One day he decided to ask God why he had even bothered to make spiders at all. And God answered David: "A day will come when you will need the work of one of these creatures, and then you will thank me."

Now David grew up to become a courageous warrior who defeated the giant Goliath and many enemies of the people of Israel. He married King Saul's daughter and was revered as the greatest man in the land. But King Saul was jealous and afraid of David and sent his soldiers to kill him. David ran away to the wilderness in hopes that the king's anger would pass, but his soldiers still pursued him. One day David ran into a cave to hide from them. He heard their footsteps drawing closer. Knowing they would soon be upon him and put him to death, he trembled in fear.

But then he saw that a huge spider at the entrance to the cave had begun very quickly spinning a web all the way across the large opening. The spider finished its work just seconds before the soldiers reached the cave's entrance. As the soldiers began to enter the cave, they ran into the spider web which halted their progress. "Look," they commented, "if David were here, he'd have torn this spider web to pieces. He must be hiding somewhere else." And they quickly ran away to continue their search elsewhere, sparing David his life. With that, David breathed a sigh of relief. He then remembered and understood his long-forgotten, childhood conversation with God and thanked him for creating all the creatures including, and most especially, the spider.

May all the little, unseen treasures of life bring you much for which to be grateful this month and always.

 

May 2013

 

Maybe it's the economy, the state of global news, or simply trying to keep up with the exhausting and relentless pace of life in today's world -- particularly with our new societal norm of extreme competitiveness and technological and information overload -- but just getting through each day seems to be getting tougher. These days, it seems that a lot of people are struggling with a deep sense of discouragement. A tiny pamphlet distributed by the Christian Mennonite community, titled "Answers for Discouragement," contained the following simple story, which addresses this issue.

One day the devil decided to put his tools up for sale at a garage sale. So an hour or two before the sale started, he neatly placed all his tools out on a table, open to public inspection. The tools were quite sinister and dangerous-looking. There were implements of lying, hatred, envy, lust, pride and many others. All of them had a price tag attached to them. Off to the side was one tool that looked well-worn, but quite harmless compared to the others. Strangely enough, this tool had a much higher price tag than the others. This was the implement of discouragement.

Potential customers soon started arriving at the garage sale and asked Satan, "Why is the price so high on this tool of discouragement?" And Satan replied, "Because it more useful to me than any of the others. Often I can't get near to people with these other tools because they look so dangerous. But this tool looks so innocent and commonplace, that with it I can get into almost any heart. And once I can get into these hearts with the implement of discouragement, then it's very easy for me to utilize these other implements."

Discouragement. Hmmm....What better way to get into our heads and hearts and derail anything we hope to accomplish in this life than to give in to the dark energies of discouragement?

Everyone reading this probably knows at least one person right now who is struggling in the depths of despair, searching for that helping hand who will pull them back into the Light. Perhaps sharing this story might help them. Additionally, in the month of May, we can concentrate on wiping away the clouds of discouragement enveloping so much of our planet and replacing them with Loving Light. And let's help those we know who are struggling by physically being there for them, encouraging them, never giving up on them, and coaxing them out of the darkness into the Light.

 

April 2013

 

It's officially spring here in the northern hemisphere, and the planting season has begun. Farming is a big industry in the United States, and when many people think of farms, they imagine the huge ranches and farms in the central or western U.S., sometimes spanning thousands of acres each. Pennsylvania is a big farming state, too, but most of the farms here are small, family-owned and operated. In fact, 98% of Pennsylvania farms can be classified as such, the average being only around 25 acres. It's easy to stop at a nearby farm stand for freshly grown produce or shop at the nearby farmers' market for delicious, nutritious and reasonably priced goods.

Unfortunately, these family-run operations make very little money for all their hard work. In Pennsylvania, the average annual income for this type of operation has been slated at around $18,500. That's well below national poverty level for a family of four. Many families have had to give up their farms in recent years because they can no longer make a living doing so. And the recent increase in the past couple of decades of the power of huge, multi-million dollar agri-business corporations to take over the struggling local farms is impinging even further. A group called "Family Farm Defenders" try to help struggling small farmers get competitive prices for their goods, keep their land and fight legal battles with the encroaching rich corporations, etc. But their most recent publication sadly talked of the very possible demise of this mostly volunteer group. They could no longer financially afford to fight the encroachment of the huge agricultural corporations and the powerful pesticide/chemical industries who back them.

Spring should be a happy time, a grateful time, a time to embrace and enjoy our connection to our Earth mother, the giver of abundant and joyful life. But this news about the Family Farm Defenders is a sad reminder of how we humans, as a species, have been greedy and careless stewards of this beautiful and bountiful planet. The Earth's resources are not limitless. Water and food are not infinite. The ability to recover from massive pollution, over-development, and chemical and genetic manipulation of our land is not guaranteed. There is a traditional Jewish saying which reflects this behavior and its negative karmic consequences: Man is a ladder placed on the earth, and the top of it touches heaven. And all his movements and doings and words leave traces in the upper world.

In our periods of meditation during the month of April, therefore, let's concentrate on our connection to our physical home. If there is a location near you suffering from human abuse -- such as a polluted river, a deforested hillside, a toxic waste site, a recently paved pasture -- send that area positive, clearing, healing thoughts. Also visualize the many small farm owners and their defenders and send them thoughts of strength and solidarity that they may keep their lands and livelihoods. Finally, let us be good stewards and send our gratitude to the Earth for all it gives us during our stay here on our individual spiritual journeys.

 

February 2013

 

February 14, Valentine’s Day, is celebrated in many countries around the world, including here in the U.S. It’s traditionally a time to shower loved ones with gifts and special attention, and because of this, love seems to permeate the entire month of February. There are also other important happenings in February. TRIUNE member Rene Wadlow has brought to our attention that the United Nations has designated the first week of February of every year as World Interfaith Harmony Week between all religions, faiths and beliefs. This seems like a good theme for our meditation periods in February, particularly because as Rene says, the week has a potential to promote the healing of religion-based tensions in the world. The following is excerpted from an article Rene sent:

Rene Wadlow, President of the Association of World Citizens, in a statement addressed to the United Nations, stressed that peace comes through cooperation beyond the boundaries and barriers set by ethnicity, religion and nationality. He called for a cultural renaissance based on the concept of harmony. Rather than concentrating primarily on conflicts, struggles and suffering, he suggested that the focus should be on cooperation, coexistence and visions of a better future. Harmony includes tolerance, acceptance, equality and forgiveness of past pains and conflicts. Harmony leads to gentleness, patience, kindness and thus to inner peace and outward to relations based on respect.

Harmony is a universal common value. In harmony we can find true belief that transcends all cultures and religions. The meaning of life is to seek harmony within our inner self. Humans are born with a spiritual soul that develops to seek self-fulfilment. Our soul has a conscience that elevates us. As our soul grows to maturity, we achieve our own harmony.

However, harmony is not only a personal goal of inner peace but a guideline for political, social and world affairs. The Citizens of the World believe that specifically at this moment in history, our action should enhance peace, reduce conflict and activate a harmony culture. The 21st century is the beginning of a Harmony Renaissance. Our world mission is to be ready for humanity’s next creative wave to lead us to a higher level of common accomplishment. The World Harmony Renaissance will bring the whole world into action for this new millennium of peace and prosperity with unfettered collective energy. Thus today, after decades of conflict when the emphasis of the countries of the world both in policy and practice was upon competition, conflict and individual enrichment, there is a need for an emphasis on harmony, cooperation, mutual respect, and working for the welfare of the community with a respect for Nature.

World Interfaith Harmony Week is an opportunity to open new paths. Rene stressed that “as world citizens we must find a new guiding image for our culture, one that unifies the aspirations of humanity with the needs of the planet and the individual. We hold that peace can be achieved through opening our hearts and minds to a broader perspective. We are one human race, and we inhabit one world. Therefore we must see the world with global eyes, understand the world with a global mind and love the world with a global heart.”

 

 

November 2012

 

So far, 2012 has been a busy year and, for many, it's also been a demanding and trying one. The effects of recent Hurricane Sandy on the U.S. East Coast is just one example. We all have so much going on in our lives these days. When we also factor in all that is happening around the world that requires our attention, the sheer amount of information can become overwhelming, compounded by the enormous stress it produces for those of us who work in some capacity for the betterment of humanity. We experience mixed emotions, reflecting the sometimes mixed results we see for all our hard work. Sometimes we feel elated, confident in our efforts and full of joy. Other times, exhausted and deflated, we wonder if what we are trying to do in our group work is having any real effect at all.

Lucille Cedercrans, student of the Master St. Germain, wrote the following on which we can meditate during the month of November. It may help to explain not only why we sometimes feel as we do, but also how our efforts, even in the midst of conflict and seeming chaos, truly ARE having a helpful effect:

The energy of Synthesis radiates the positive pole and absorbs the negative pole, contacting each of these in whatever form it has entered. And thus, through radiation and absorption, it out-pictures as its own substance the extremes to be resolved. It might be said, then, that conflict in the extreme is one of its major characteristics and effects. That conflict, however, will be short-lived, relatively speaking, due to another major characteristic and effect of the Synthesis energy.

Because of the radiating and absorbing nature and motion of Synthesis, the pairs of opposites are quickly synthesized into a one, a total or whole. The positive and negative poles are radiated and absorbed into one another, or one atom, so to speak, because of their juxtaposition or perfect alignment. Thus, that which was once so-called good and bad have been wedded into a new state or condition or manifestation, which is neither good nor bad, but simply an evolutionary movement. One of its characteristic effects in manifestation is rapid, and one might say, almost radical change. Conflict in the extreme, followed by quick evolutionary change,will manifest wherever the Synthesis energy is applied.

 

September 2012

 

Here in the U.S., this weekend is our American Labor Day holiday, celebrating the dignity and worth of the American worker. And even though summer lasts for another three weeks, Labor Day also signifies for Americans the unofficial end of the summer season. It's back to school for children and college students and back to serious work schedules for many employees who have had vacation days and slower, lighter workloads. Once the Labor Day holiday is over and autumn is on its way, there is always a great feeling of change in the air. This year, that feeling is enhanced by the upcoming Presidential election in November, when there is the possibility of change as well in our governmental administration at the highest level.

Change, of course, is inevitable. It's what keeps us moving forward as a species. Change can be welcome and exciting; but for many people, it can also feel frightening and overwhelming. The fear of loss of control over familiar situations often causes strong reactions. Some folks dig in their heels and refuse to even acknowledge, let alone embrace, any sort of change. Others desire nothing but change, and they confidently embrace "the next big thing" without even pausing to evaluate its worth. There is, however, an old saying -- "we shouldn't throw out the baby with the bath water" -- meaning, of course, that in all things, it's better not to give in to rash decisions, but rather to maintain our center, our sense of calm, patience, balance and synthesis. We can be enthusiastic about change. But in our haste to embrace the new, we shouldn't neglect to incorporate all the best points of the already established. Being able to do so may require a delicate balancing act, but it prevents a sense of division -- a sort of "taking sides" -- which so often leads to trouble.

Energies and emotions, both positive and negative, are strong right now, creating some imbalance in the ethers. In our meditations this month of September, let's concentrate on balancing the sometimes chaotic energies in the atmosphere which inevitably arise at the change of seasons and particularly at this time of year. As a seed thought for our work, we can use something attributed to St. Teresa of Avila:

Let nothing frighten you.
Everything is changing.
God alone is changeless.
Patience achieves the aim.
Who has God lacks nothing.
God alone fills all needs.

 

July / August 2012

 

On our homepage under the Beacons: Our Featured Members section, you can read a very interesting interview of TRIUNE member Fiona Odgren, called Mountains, Music and Metaphysics. A portion of this interview relates to our July meditation theme -- mountains and the energies they produce.

This may seem like an odd topic to consider during meditation; however, all sacred literature, all religions and spiritual traditions, all processes for spiritual enlightenment and advancement, to some degree or other, reference and pay homage to specific mountains or mountain ranges. The list of so-called "sacred" mountains is immense. To name just a few very well-known ones: Mt. Olympus in Greece; Ararat in Turkey; Kilimanjaro in Tanzania; Sinai in Egypt; Shasta in the U.S.; Machu Picchu in Peru; Fuji in Japan; Tai Shan in China; Kailas in Tibet. Revered as great sources of energy, power spots, abodes of the enlightened, and more, mountains play an integral part in all spiritual disciplines worldwide. In her interview, Fiona Odgren explained this phenomenon as our human response to their "soaring heights as living symbols of aspiration and upliftment, of encouragement to strive beyond what we think we are capable of." She called mountains "an inspiring reminder of the divine strength and beauty awaiting to be discovered within each of us." Additionally, the Ashrams of the Blessed Beings who watch over the progress of humanity have always been linked with prana-filled mountain retreats, far from the hustle and bustle of crowded cities.

This month we meditate upon this subject and see what insights we might receive about why mountains play such an important role not only in our personal spiritual journeys, but also in our work for TRIUNE. Because many people travel on vacations at this time of year (here in the northern hemisphere, it is the summer holiday season), you may want to be conscious of the different "vibratory rates" of places you visit, especially comparing variations at differing altitudes.

 

 

May / June 2012

 

Economists have painted a gloomy, long-term financial picture, filled with images of a stalled recovery. Financial news continues to be shaky, with much concern centered around the current economic situation in Europe and its global implications. With unemployment still so high and the economic recovery so fragile, many people are consumed with fear and uncertainty over the future. Such emotions are a breeding ground for much negativity and inertia and fill the global aura with chaotic waves of harmful energy. This concentration of paranoid and pessimistic energies clouds our abilities to think clearly and rationally on the mundane level and severely blocks our efforts to bring to humanity the new understanding of spirituality and abundance.

Throughout the ages, those forces which seek to stifle humanity's spiritual progress have always relied on instilling fear, confusion and division in the populace in order to achieve their nefarious aims. Therefore, we need to counteract these erratic, negative and confused energies with Light, Hope, Optimism and the Love of God...as well as send into the ethers clear and well-defined thought forms that associate joy and abundance with being a rightful gift to humanity from its Divine Creator.

As a seed-thought for meditation, here is a quote from Annie Rix Militz, New Thought proponent, who first spoke of spirituality and abundance in the early 20th century:

Everyone who comes into the world has a rich aura, the gift of his heavenly father...the reflection of Divine Mind, and it contains all the elements of every expression of richness upon the face of the whole earth. Its thoughts of goodness are the reality back of gold; its consciousness of freedom lies back of silver; its purity is the substance of diamonds; and all its virtues are portrayed in the gems of the earth.

 

 

April 2012

 

The daffodils and forsythias are putting on a pretty show of yellow finery, and the velvety, purple pansies are in bloom. They look so tiny and delicate, yet they are extremely hardy. During the cold April nights, the little pansies droop over and tuck their heads against the chill. The next morning they often look as though they have died off. Yet, as soon as the sun's warming rays touch their petals, they perk right up, looking good as new. Continuing to give of their beauty and joy despite the harsh conditions, they are the epitome of HOPE...our April meditation theme.

Yesterday was the big mega-millions lottery drawing here in the United States. The odds of winning were a ridiculous one-in-176 million. Supposedly, we have a better chance of being struck by lightning – twice! Yet, millions of people feverishly rushed out to purchase lottery tickets, in hopes of cashing in on the $640 million jackpot drawing. News reports buzzed about the size of the lottery. However, there were also many other reports cautioning viewers about the inevitable fact that in the end most of us would be losers, not winners, of this windfall. Experts explained how to handle negative emotions like disappointment, depression, anger or jealousy that we might feel after the drawing.

Sometimes it's sad that people will pin their hopes on transient things (like lottery tickets), yet do not realize that we are all Sacred Beings for whom the Universe will provide. Granted, this may not always be in the way we, in our current limited and undeveloped capacity, might envision. But like the little pansies, we must continually turn our faces towards the Sun after our cold, dark nights and push onwards.

In April, let's meditate upon the concept of HOPE. Let's send the vibrations of hope into the hearts of others that they, too, might feel the warmth and comfort of the Sun and know the abundance of the Universe.

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all…..Emily Dickinson

 

March 2012

 

March feels like an "in-between" time of year. The weather isn't harsh like winter anymore, but the days can't be counted on to be consistently spring-like, either. The hustle and excitement of working on new projects begun in January and February is waning, but we haven't yet succumbed to that laid-back attitude towards work that we all seem to develop in the summer months. While still "cocooned" safely indoors, many people are mentally planning vacation days on sunny, warm beaches or breezy mountaintops. The expectation of again seeing colorful flowers and leaves on the trees, or going outside without hat and gloves leaves us day-dreaming and finding it difficult to concentrate – "spring fever," it's been called. We are "in our heads" half the time…fully engaged neither here nor there.

All seems in a state of flux in March and so, perhaps, it is a good month to revisit the topic of concentration. It isn't so difficult for us to concentrate when we pick up our favorite spiritual book or enter our meditation sanctuary at our usual meditation time. But what about the rest of the day? How easy or difficult do we personally find it to respond to the ups and downs of daily living, all the while maintaining a "spiritual" frame of mind? Does "being in the moment" come naturally during difficult and stressful times? Does it require a concerted effort? Or does it seem to fly out the window in the face of daily adversities, leaving us feeling scattered and out of control?

Brother Lawrence of the Resurrection was a beautiful Soul and lay brother of a Carmelite monastery in Paris in the 1600's. He was very poor and, throughout his stay in the monastery, he always seemed to be relegated to the jobs no one else felt like doing. He is quoted as saying the following about his situation:

The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer, and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons are at the same time calling for different things, I possess God in a great tranquility as if I were upon my knees at the blessed sacrament.

Often referred to as the "kitchen saint," Brother Lawrence, though not a saint in the "official" sense of the word, is greatly revered by Christians for the ability he possessed to find the spiritual in the simplest tasks and to give those tasks as much of his whole-hearted attention, devotion and joy as he gave to his time of meditation and prayer. How wonderful and fulfilling is this ability to maintain our connection with our Higher Selves at all times and amidst all types of circumstances, like Brother Lawrence was able to do. We can try to emulate Brother Lawrence: to maintain at all times, particularly during our busy work days, our connections with our Higher Selves -- to "stay in the moment," performing every action, no matter how mundane, with a sense of divinity and joy, our spiritual gift to the world.

 

February 2012

 

Here in the United States, February is the month when the Valentine's Day holiday is celebrated -- February 14. It is a day when people remember those they love. While Valentine's Day centers around the traditional view of personalized, sentimental and romantic love, we in TRIUNE are concerned with the more far-reaching, more universal type of love -- the sacred, Divine, all-encompassing love that far surpasses the idea of love in the mundane sense. It is unconditional, unselfish love for all that exists in the universe, a powerful and healing energy, recognizable by a magnanimous warmth of the heart, untainted by personal motives.

We attempt to work with this Divine energy, which Helena Roerich called "Love, the Unifier."

As an ashram of synthesis, one of our tasks is to try to heal the wounds of division that the human race currently experiences from a lack of unification. The energy of Divine Love is the tool for this job. In both our mundane, physical lives and also during our meditations, we seek to contact this Divine energy, "bathe" in it, and then touch others with it...a soothing balm for all humanity's ills and sorrows. We have many, many opportunities every day to do this with everyone with whom we come in contact, either physically or at a distance. By the manipulation of the magnetic energies of Divine Love we can heal suffering, increase Light and bring real change to the planet.

In a letter to one of her students in 1936, Helena Roerich said the following:

Let all those who seek Light and who are overburdened by grief find response in your heart; and let all those who have gathered under your guidance feel that heartfelt sympathy which warms one. . . One should learn to penetrate into the consciousnesses, the hearts and moods of all those who surround and come to us. It is necessary to feel the fundamental undertone upon which one can be united with them and unite them with others.

When we work from the heart, much can be accomplished. As Helena said:

If the great magnet of love lies in the heart, everything will be made easier, since the sincerity of this feeling can conquer the most hardened hearts.

 

 

JANUARY 2012

 

There is much discussion among people right now about the possible scenarios which will play out in this spiritually important -- and some say "volatile" -- year of 2012. Emotions are running the gamut from fear to elation, and ideas about the year's outcome range from global catastrophe and destruction to worldwide spiritual enlightenment. With so many voices clamoring for our attention, it's difficult to know where to focus. In this month's periods of meditation, let's try to gather as much information and understanding as we can from the higher spiritual planes and our guides and teachers -- the blessed Beings who watch over the progress of humanity -- and, of course, from our own Higher Selves. And let's try to do this with as much calm, clarity, reason, stability and neutrality as we can muster.

We are an Ashram of Synthesis, practicing inclusiveness and respect for all traditions. Therefore, as a seed thought for meditations in January, we have chosen a quote from a booklet of daily devotional readings published by a fundamentalist Christian, Amish/Mennonite organization. The following excerpt (ignoring the gender-exclusive language), from an entry entitled "God's Answer for Discouragement," is really rather beautiful in its simplicity and humility and a helpful starting point for a new year:

It is good to spend time every morning reading God's Word and asking Him to be with us throughout the day. Then let us be spiritually minded as we go about our daily work, remembering to always seek God and His righteousness. Our thoughts develop our character, so we must be careful what we think. Philippians 4:6-7 tells us not to worry about anything, but to make our requests known to God. He wants to help us and encourage us if we come to Him with open hearts.