PART ONE MY SPIRITUAL AND LIFE JOURNEY
CHAPTER FOUR -
CONNECTING WITH GOD ON THE TRAIN
I whittle away slowly,
meticulously, carving piece
by piece from the solid
chunk of my soul –
chipping, slicing my way
to the spirit of God within.
Like the sculptor who let’s
the stone reveal the image,
I let the art of God guide
my hands, shaping, smoothing,
chopping, caressing my way to
It is a wet Friday morning – 6:45 AM - January 21 to be exact - as I move through the Fredericksburg Station, watching the pigeons as they seek protection from the rain, with my umbrella still opened in one hand, with my case wheeling behind me, as I approach the ramp up to Track 3. Ann has gotten out of bed at 6:30 AM to drive me to the train and on the way, attempted to inspire me by joyfully singing “I got the love of Jesus, love of Jesus down in my heart.” As I make my way through the station, I find myself whistling the melody of this positive hymn.
Up on the platform, I chat with John one of my fellow commuters, and ask if the track announcement has been made, and he confirms I am on the right track. Our conversation centers on the rain and when I will be able to take my Christmas lights down. The cast of Amtrak characters has changed since the March morning I started this book, most notably, Ron the architect, who was a brilliant conversationalist, was laid off in December and disappeared. I recently found out he has a new job and no longer takes the Amtrak. I definitely miss the lively banter that Ron brought to the platform.
Down the track, through the rain, we can hear the rumble of the train in the distance, and finally, around the bend, we watch the flickering headlights cut through darkness and the horn blasts twice. The tracks reflect the lights as the train pulls up. Near the end of the platform, the conductor sets out the yellow step-up stool, and with my fellow travelers, I board as the conductor repeats, “watch out it is slippery.”
I make my way to the back of the train, which is my habit, but stop in one of the updated train cars with plush roomy seats, usually reserved for business class, or the trains that run to Florida. Since it is a nicer car, it fills up fast with the chatterers, and I move to the back of the train to find a quieter place to meditate.
As I write, I realize that it has been over ten months since I began the journey of writing this book, recording my train trip of March 15, which now opens Chapter One - God's Wake-up Call. During this time, I have had and recuperated from Pituitary Brain surgery, met my grandchild - Christian, and learned the basics of Blogging. With the encouragement of Ann, I set up my Blog - Finding God On The Train - Notes On Enlightenment which is probably where you are now reading this chapter, unless the book has been published.
This chapter focuses on the methods and approaches I have used to directly connect with God on the train, and brings the story of Part One – My Spiritual And Life Journey, more spiritually current, recognizing that all of the proceeding steps have led me to actually finding god on the train. I hope to explain and explore my connection with God, and by using my experience as a guide, inspire others who are seeking a personal spiritual connection. I say this with the understanding that, each of us, will have our own unique and distinct personal connection with God: each of us, will have a different approach and style of contact, and will receive messages that pertain to our unique beliefs and quest. To augment this, I would also like to give readers a sense of my actual commute and the train ride into Washington, D.C., by providing train snippets to add to the experience.
During this time period of writing, my concept of the book has also evolved, as I have become more attuned to my own divinely inspired guidance, along with incorporating what is of interest to blog readers. I hope you will bear with me as I open myself up to divine inspiration, in a sense, coauthroing the book with God. Most importantly, to any spiritual journey, I have continued to learn a great deal about my life, my God, and myself.
We will leave Fredericksburg behind, traveling east along the CSX Railroad track line leased by Amtrak and the VRE Commuter Train, with the passenger and commuter trains competing with the long, large, and loud CSX Freight Trains. We climb, heading north through the small town of Brooke, and cross the Aquia Creek, meandering our way through some of the most scenic countryside Virginia has to offer, heading to the Potomac River, and the Virginia/Maryland border, at the river’s edge. The sheer beauty of the trip, peaceful, serene, and full of panoramic forest and water scenes, overwhelms non-commuters and commuters alike. I am alone now, and it is my time to prepare for what I call meditative prayer, which is a combination that I have found to be very effective for connecting with God.
PREPARATION FOR PRAYER AND MEDITATION
Learning to effectively pray and meditate, is at the center of my spiritual time spent on the train. Honestly, although I have spent countless hours praying to God as a Methodist, a Conservative Jew – and later as an Episcopalian - I was never very adept at prayer. My training, regarding prayer, had been centered on thanking God, or asking God for something, which I found most useful in times of fear and worry. I would often ask God to keep something from occurring in my life, to spare me, or to assist in saving me.
For the most part, prayer was for Sunday mornings, and as an Episcopalian, in my adult years, this was made even more mechanical with the use of the Book of Common Prayer, where all the prayers for the Sunday service were provided, and you were told when to say each silently, or in unison. Jewish religious services were quite similar, also using a prayer book, except in Hebrew, which, I believe, set the tone for the Christian prayer books used by the Catholics and the Episcopalians. Overall, I never fully understood what to pray, and what to expect. Surely, I was never prepared for, or expected, a direct answer or communication. I was ok with the concept that God worked in mysterious ways, and would help out or assist if able. As a result, I found prayer to be a Sunday thing, and never expected it to be very fulfilling or meaningful.
Meditation, was even more difficult and perplexing for me, and it seemed somewhat mystical. I knew, from what I had heard about Transcendental Meditation, that a Mantra was needed, to quiet the “monkey mind,” as the Buddhists call it, or often referred to as the “mind chatter," that is constantly running an endless loop of nonsense in our heads. This chatter, by the way, emanates from a few cells in the left hemisphere of our brains, whose job it is to interpret our reality, and keep a constant story going of potential issues in our lives. They are a creative group of cells that will embellish on reality, and create a whole false scenario, to keep our attention, if needed. In Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor’s book, My Stroke of Insight, A Brain Scientist’s Personal Journey, you can learn about the monkey mind cells, and the amazing functioning of the brain, from a brain scientist’s personal experience with a stroke.
Returning to the point, which is, that meditation assists you in quieting your mind chatter, and entering into the silence. Although, I had read extensively about meditation, in the past, I never could quite mastere it as a daily practice. My mind was not to be quieted, and I would just stop trying. The other problem was, besides a feeling of peace and oneness, I was never sure what it was I needed to accomplish.
Ok, back to the train, and the spiritual time each morning I use to connect with God. Over the years, commuting on the train, I have dedicated over an hour of my morning commute time to focus on my spiritual life. I have had a chance to develop my own prayer and meditation style that fits for me. This took at least six months, before I was able to develop a system that actually worked. I would like to emphasize, your approach to prayer and meditation should be personalized, to fit your individual preferences, and what follows, should be used only as a guide. As I discuss the process and the techniques, I will refer to the books and guides I have found useful as I have progressed. I will also underscore, the conceptual approaches used by established religious New Thought organizations, such as, Unity and Religious Science.
But, before we start, let us understand, what it is we do expect from prayer. Do we just want to let God know, things are not going so well with our lives, and God needs to jump in and save us? Do we want to thank God for all God has done for us? Do we want something to change? Do we just need guidance and assistance? I believe God needs clarity to work with, in order to understand what we need in our lives - a clear definition of God's expected role in accomplishing our positive progress. But telling God what we do “not want,” does not clearly express what we do want. This would be like telling a waiter, who requests our order, what we do not want. I believe, affirmative clarity, centering on exactly what it is we do need, or expect, is the clearest way to communicate through prayer and meditation. Affirmative prayer, is what this is called, and we will cover it in more depth, as we proceed.
Preparation for prayer and meditation, requires that we move our focus, from the physical world, to the spiritual world. In our modern lives, this transition can be challenging, and takes time. For me, with my hour and fifteen minute undisturbed train rides, I have a perfect environment, although a bit non-traditional. To accomplish this, you will need time and space away from the physical world disturbances. If you are like me, that means your iPhone, Blackberry, and /or pager needs to be handled. I have all three, and I turn the ringers off, much to the chagrin of my clients at times. This is, my time, for rejuvenation and spiritual growth!
You will also need a place, where you will not be disturbed, or interrupted. On the train, I seek a spot away from my fellow passengers, who are holding conversations or making noise. Although I do hear train noise, I have learned to incorporate the rumble of the train into my meditation, and I find it quite soothing and comforting. When considering how much of my day I now spend in meditative prayer, I would suggest dedicating at least fifteen minutes to begin with and see how it works for you. As time goes on, and as your prayers and meditations become more involved, you may want to increase the amount of time.
WHY BOTH PRAYER AND MEDITATION?
I want to take a moment here, to clarify, why you might want to both pray and meditate, and not just do one or the other, which of course, is always your personal option, and your choice for your spiritual growth. Prayer, from my perspective, is your time to clarify with God (or Source or Infinite Intelligence or Divine Mind or Spirit or any term or phrase that best conveys the concept of God for you) what you want, need, or desire to happen, in an affirmative way. In prayer, you are up to communicate and lay the groundwork – set the stage – and frame the request.
Equally as important, during this time, you also frame your expectation for your own subconscious mind, by clearly outlining your expected outcomes, as if they exist in reality today. Your subconscious mind, takes these positive affirmations as fact, and frames them as "reality" in your mind. In this type of prayer, you are preparing God at the same time, as you are focusing your mind.
During meditation, you give God a chance to provide you with guidance, feedback, and assistance. I believe that God is connected with you at all times, and if you can be silent, or “enter the silence,” as many spiritual seekers describe this state, God will respond directly to you. Overall, what I am suggesting here, is to effectively communicate with God, you need to both talk and listen. Honestly, this took me several months of praying to find out. I finally realized that God was not responding, because I never gave God a chance. I was too busy talking. I needed to listen. So this is why, a blended session, including prayer and meditation, has been so powerful for me, and is what I recommend.
TRANSITIONING TO THE SPIRITUAL WORLD
Effective mental transitioning from the physical to the spiritual world, is assisted by preparing your mind for prayer and meditation, basically, getting into the mood for the experience. When I first started out on this path, I had not discovered the abundance of spiritual literature that exists through the New Thought movement, and the other spiritual writers just mentioned in Chapter Three. I focused on positive thinking and attitude improvement books, such as Jeffrey Gitomer’s, Little Golden Book of YES Attitude, which I would re-read every day, and follow his lead, when he suggested reading positive thinking greats, such as, Dale Carnegie, Napoleon Hill, and Dr. Norman Vincent Peale.
So as time went on, I added a morning dose of Dale Carnegie’s success focused book - How To Win Friends & Influence People, then moved on to Napoleon Hill’s books, Think and Grow Rich, and Keys to Success. My first exposure into more traditional New Thought concepts, came by way of Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, as I mentioned in Chapter Three, who in the 1950’s published a bestseller titled, The Power of Positive Thinking, which I consider the world’s first mass marketed prescription of New Thought concepts and techniques, including affirmative prayer, and even a form of silent meditation.
The Power of Positive Thinking was The Secret of its time, and in fact, clearly touched on most of topics approached in The Secret, or any New Thought work, I have read since. At the time, I had no idea that I was being exposed to the framework of New Thought, but I enjoyed Dr. Peale’s focus on God, and our ability to connect with God in our lives. Today, I realize that Peale was one of the New Thought leaders of the 20th century, although he never mentioned the phrase. For a special treat, pick up the CD of the original audio recording of the book by Peale.
As I discovered the New Thought spiritual world, I began to set the stage for my day, and my daily meditation and prayer sessions, by reading Unity Church’s, Daily Word, and the Science of Mind, A Guide to Spiritual Living magazine, published by the Church of Religious Science. Both are monthly publications that provide a daily spiritual message, with quotations from a wide range of spiritual writers, that I use to start off each day. Most churches have similar daily guides and support materials, and as long as it is positive, read these to prepare for your meditation and prayer sessions.
Now, as an experienced New Thought oriented meditator, my lineup of spiritual reading has become quite varied, as over the year’s I have added what works for me, altering each, as needed, to add variety. In Chapter Three, I mentioned Dr. Ernest Holmes and his New Thought spiritual textbook, Science Of Mind, and I have added a daily reading from, 365 Science Of Mind – A Year of Daily Wisdom From Ernest Holmes edited by Kathy Juline. To add a Buddhist mindfulness focus to my preparation, I read another daily devotional titled, Your True Home – The Every Day Wisdom of Thich Nhat Hanh, complied and edited by Melvin McLeod.
I would strongly suggest, a daily reading from a wonderful compilation of spiritual masterpieces, tilted Timeless Wisdom - Passages for Meditation From The World’s Saints And Sages, by Eknath Easwaran, the Indian spiritual scholar. Depending on my focus at the time, I also add a brief daily reading, selected randomly, from one of the following Indian spiritual texts, all available in excellent translations by Eknath Easwaran - The Upanishads, The Bhagavad Gita, or The Dhammapada.
I end my spiritual reading, with one oe more poems, from my favorite books of spiritual poetry. First, Rainer Maria Rilke, one of the twentieth century’s greatest poets, who while visiting Russia was overcome by the simple spirituality he encountered, and upon returning home to Germany, was divinely inspired to write his most famous poetic work, The Book Of Hours - a testament to the divine, reflecting his deep connection and intimacy with God. I use, and highly recommend, the english translation, by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy, titled, Rilke’s Book of Hours – Love Poems To God. My day would not be complete without a reading from, The Gift - Poems By Hafiz The Great Sufi Master – translations by Daniel Ladinsky. Recently, I have added a poem from a compilation of the works of the world’s great mystics, representing diverse spiritual paths, also translated by Daniel Ladinsky, titled, Love Poems From God – Twelve Sacred Voices from the East and West. I am sure you have, or will find, other poets that speak to you spiritually. Again, the key here is to find what works for you, so let your heart and soul take the lead.
The train keeps rolling northeast, and meets the Potomac, as the CSX tracks follow the natural curve of the river, and we move into the Wide Water area, where the Potomac expands to its widest section on its movement to Washington, D.C. The train moves at full steam, or diesel, with the forest on the left, and the Potomac on the right, expanding under the new light of day. I truly feel, this is, one of the most beautiful areas of Virginia, as the train rumbles towards Quantico, Virginia - the home of the Marine Corp Base and the FBI Training Center - and I hear as the conductor shouts out, "Quantico, next stop," and the train prepares to make its first stop.
USING POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS
When I am finished with my inspirational reading, I have added a step which you may wish to consider, and this is the verbal reading, out loud if possible, of positive affirmations. As we have discussed, affirmations are positive statements announcing to God – universal mind – and to our own subconscious mind, how we view the world, and what we expect to occur during the day. This is a powerful way to use the Law of Mind Action, or Attraction, to frame our reality and set positive expectations.
I will go into more detail on how to write positive affirmations in upcoming chapters, but before I begin to pray/meditate daily, I recite a number of affirmations that I feel are most appropriate for the day, including affirmations on abundance, loving kindness, health, healing, positive mental attitude, confidence, memory, organization skills, and a host of other topics. I also include a number of affirmations focused on the completion of projects and tasks, that promote immediate action, and staying organized, because I do work, and these affirmations help me focus on doing the best job possible.
For an excellent affirmation for starting off your daily practice, please refer back to the - Today I AM affirmation - I used at close of the introduction. I usually kick off my spiritual session with this expansive and very comprehensive affirmation. You may want to consider making it a habit to recite the Today I AM affirmation out loud each day, if you find it helpful and relevant.
As an example, my Abundance affirmation, listed below, reflects the reality I want to manifest, even if, it is not always fully evident in my current life.
Through God, the world supplies my every financial, spiritual,
physical, and emotional need, want, or desire, and when
appropriate, provides even what I am at this time, unaware
of, but need to progress. The bounty of my life creates a joy
in knowing that if I ask, or think, or dream, it will be given.
Financially, I have an abundance of money, wealth, and assets.
I pay my bills and obligations, give substantial amounts to
those in need, and have significant amounts in reserve.
I am able to purchase the house, cars, clothes, furnishings,
and education that I want, need, or desire, without concern.
I am wealthy beyond my imagination. I am abundant.
I am grateful.
Affirmations provide excellent spiritual and personal benefits, and where helpful, I will continue to provide an affirmation that I have found successful, at the end of each chapter.
BEGINNING OUR MEDITATIVE PRAYER SESSION
Now we are ready to begin our meditative prayer session. We will need to review a few simple techniques to put ourselves into a good meditative state, and to quiet our minds for the session. I only first, fully understood meditation, after reading Deepak Chopra’s excellent book, The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire. Part Two of the book is titled, Paving Destiny’s Path, and offers a section on Meditation and mantras, highlighting an easy to understand guide on how to meditate. The mantra Deepak uses and recommends, and the one I often still use effectively today, is the “so–hum” mantra.
What I do is, close my eyes, and as I inhale deeply, I sound out the word “so,” and on exhaling, I sound out the word “hum.” This allows me to focus on my breath as I inhale, saying “so,” and exhale, saying “hum.” It is also an option, to verbalize the “so-hum” in your mind, if you prefer, or if you are not in a place where you can say it out loud. The use of the “so –hum” mantra, forces a focus on the breath, and quiets the chatter in your mind, and in a short time, will put you into a meditative state.
If I cannot quiet my mind with “so–hum,” I have often used Wayne Dyer’s Joppa Meditation, as outlined in his gem of a book, Getting in the Gap, Making Conscious Contact with God through Meditation. The one I use is based on the Lord’s Prayer, and I highly recommend its use when your mind will just not settle down. With Joppa, we use the “Ah” sound, which is used by many spiritual seekers as the sound for God, in a meditation using the Lord’s Prayer. The technique I use is to say “Ahhhhhhhh,” to fill the gap between the words of the prayer. I first say, “Our Father,” and then mentally, I fill the gap, or space, in my mind, after “Our,” and before “Father,” with a fully exhaled “Ahhhhhhhhh,” done three times to extinguish all the air, and again forcing me to focus on my breathing. Usually by the time I finish, the Gap between “Who Art,” I am in a deep meditative state, and ready to pray. Of course, this technique would work with any spiritual material that has meaning for you.
For an in-depth, and fairly exhaustive, study of meditation techniques, centering on clearing your mind or, what is also termed Mindfulness, I would suggest Jon Kabat-Zinn’s book titled, Coming To Our Senses – Healing Ourselves and the World Through Mindfulness. This book is based on Zinn’s work over the past thirty years at the Stress Reduction Center and Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, located at the University of Massachusetts Hospital and Medical School. At the core of Mindfulness, is our ability to silence our thoughts, clear our minds, and focus on our senses through meditation. Clearing the mind, is what we are after to create the silence.
Depending on my mind chatter, and pre-occupation with the physical world, the “so–hum” and Joppa mantras prepare me for meditation in a few minutes. I have found these techniques so much more effective then jumping right into the meditative prayer session.
Throughout the book, I will share blog posts that I feel support the material, and add something to the discussion. The blog post below, published 7.6.10, highlights an opening prayer that I was instructed to memorize, and use, whenever I prepared to meditate. I have followed this guidance, and find it very effective, when preparing to meditate, and possibly, you will also find it useful in your preparation.
ALIVE IN THIS MOMENT - PRAYER/POEM –
DAILY POST ON ENLIGHTENMENT
As I mentioned yesterday, I have been expanding my meditation sessions to do some experimenting, and see if I can get a little deeper and a little more connected. Near the end of a pleasant forty-five minute meditation, I received a message in the silence that simply whispered, “memorize this prayer.”
When I get a message, I try to remember the first few lines, and when I finish the session, I reach for my moleskine journal, record the line I remember, and transcribe what ever comes to mind without editing. The first section came as a directive:
Memorize this prayer and say it until the words
are written on your heart –inscribed within your
soul, and you are one with its rhythm and rhyme.
Here is the prayer that I then transcribed. I plan to take the advice and put it to memory, using it as an opening whenever I meditate.
ALIVE IN THIS MOMENT
In this moment now I am fully alive –
my blood flowing strongly through my veins –
I am all senses alert – full of the substance of life.
I see the wonder of the Universal soul –
I smell the fragrance of beauty – of reverence –
I feel the satin of cosmic flesh polished smooth
with the brilliance of everlasting life.
I taste the symphony of flavors of perfect life alive,
refreshing, bursting with a taste beyond comprehension.
I envision in my mind the lavender splendor of
a universal landscape and seek the portal to all
grace, to all knowing, to all love and peace.
I am alive in this moment now - all that is – is now.
I am the sense of all creation in search of
my universal home, my divine self,
my purposeful life.
LORD HEAR MY PRAYER
At this time, my mantra changes, and I use a more traditional phrase, “Lord, hear my prayer." I repeat this numerous times to open my prayer session, while focusing on the rhythm of my breathing. “Lord, hear my prayer,” repeating it a few more times, and then I begin every session with thanks and gratitude. Each morning I begin with thanks and gratitude for all I have and all I have been given. Yes, this is the time I thank the Lord for all that I have received, and show how grateful I am for my life, my love, my job, my breath, my abundance, and all the other wonders God provides me and my family.
I may simply state it as - “Thank you Lord for this train seat that provides me comfort, for this train carrying me to my job, for this opportunity to pray, for my health and the health of my family, for the issue you resolved for me yesterday. Thank you God for being with me through the day, for your guidance, and your love.” If I asked for guidance or assistance, and received it the prior day, I give thanks. I thank God for my job, my loving partner, my great church, and my wonderful children. During this time, I realize and feel grateful for the abundance of my life, and the joy of having God included.
Once thanks is given, and I am in a receptive mood, I like to establish my connection with Universal Mind, or the Infinite Intelligence of God. In New Thought, terms such as Universal Mind, Divine Mind, Creative Mind or Infinite Intelligence are often used as synonyms for God, similar to terms like Spirit or Source, which are also used, rather than saying God. I also use these terms to signify the personal connection of my mind with God’s universal mind, or if we look at this in modern system terms, we might say, the Divine Internet.
I simply state the following: “I affirm and establish now that I am connected with God and infinite intelligence.” As I mention this, I realize I need to discuss my approach to prayer. For me, J. Douglas Bottorff's, A Practical Guide to Meditation and Prayer, that follows the Unity prayer tradition, has been a great guide, and one of the more profound, and effective books, on prayer I have read. The concept here is that we need to clearly affirm what we do want, and expect, from our prayer requests. So before most prayer statements, I have added a brief phrase, and say the following: “I affirm and establish now.” With this phrase, I not only affirm that my statement is true, but by adding “establish it now,” I am affirming to God that this affirmative prayer statement is now true and active. To me, this clears up any confusion for God, and more importantly my subconscious mind. I consider this affirmative prayer request occurring now, established now, and true now.
I believe this is much more effective than saying, I wish, or someday I would like, or if possible, or would you please make this happen. If this sounds to bold to you, or mechanical, it is your option to leave it off, but I would recommend that you focus on declarative statements with clear expectations. As a result, the line, “Affirm and Establish Now,” gets added to most of my affirmations and requests to God.
Let’s move back into our meditation, where we want to be sure to stay focused and in our meditative prayer state. We have established our connection with God, and we are ready to continue the session. If stray thoughts or chatter are breaking in, always go back to focusing on your breathing, and reintroduce “so–hum” until you are ready to proceed.
At this point, I do ask God to be with me throughout the day, guide my actions, give me strength, help me resolve the issues of the day, and be my companion. Although I believe that God is with us at all times, I find it comforting to make this clear as my first request. I move on to affirm my expectation for the day, and what I would like to accomplish.
“I affirm and establish now that I will successfully
complete all tasks, activities, or projects I focus
“I affirm and establish now that I will quickly,
easily, efficiently, and without strain, complete
all day to day activities”.
These prayer affirmations can also center on how you expect to feel and handle yourself during the day. Affirmations I use on a daily basis often include the following:
“I affirm and establish now that I will approach
the day in a loving and kind manner.”
“I affirm and establish now that I will be full of energy,
enthusiasm, and will have fun as I complete my work
This approach to using affirmations, ensures the major issues that you face during the day, will be addressed and framed to elicit a positive outcome. A positive outcome is what we want from God, and the clearer it is stated, the more effective the prayer will be, in my experience. Again, please note, that these positive prayer requests prepare and focus the conscious and subconscious mind, on what you expect to happen, as a result of your activity during the day.
For some, this might be too rigid or forma,l or not free flowing enough, so an effective alternative, is to just clearly outline to God what you would like to occur. Also, the content may be changed to cover your most pressing life concerns or desires. This is the time when you need to let God know what you want, and when you want it, and what direct assistance is needed. I often, at this time, move from framing the day to other major issues including health, wellness, healing, and abundance.
The train completes its stop in Quantico, as the newly arrived commuters and travelers make their way to find seats, and stow their luggage. The train picks up speed moving over Quantico Creek, and maintains its course adjacent to the Potomac River, as it climbs northeast through Leesylvania State Park, and into Occoquan Bay, where scenic views are provided on the right side of the train.
PRAYING FOR HEALTH
My current focus is on health, since, as I write this chapter, I am recovering from the Endoscopic (through the nose with cameras) surgical removal of a brain tumor. The operation was a great success, relatively painless, and I have recuperated quickly as God said would happen in my meditations leading up to the surgery. Healing to me now - and the related affirming of my well oneness - are the leading topics in my prayers. When praying for healing, I use the opening line from a powerful healing affirmation that came to me in a meditation.
I focus on and accept the healing power of Christ in my life, and in
my soul. The power of Christ’s healing force is within me, surges
through me, and clears away all pain and disease. I am whole in
Christ and renewed by the rebirth. Christ lays his gentle, loving
hands on my head, and creates wholeness – oneness – and
restores the original work of God. Christ, I accept your healing
powers, and return to the wholeness of God’s creation.
In this affirmation I connect with the healing power of Christ, whicht was uniquely manifested and demonstrated throughout his ministry. A power Jesus clearly indicated was within all of us. With this meditation, I connect with this power in my soul.
Please note that the reference to Christ could easily be replaced with any other spiritual healer, or force, that fits your religious and spiritual orientation. Although I have included the entire affirmation, I usually use the first line of the affirmation as a mantra when I move into an extensive healing prayer session, and say, “I focus on and accept the healing power of Christ." For overall health and wellness, I often use this affirmation:
My body and mind reflect the perfect well state
when God created me. Healing powers surge
through my blood stream, nervous system,
brain and every organ and cell, keeping me
in a constant state of wellness, with both
physical and mental health.
Prayer is the perfect place to request healing and health assistance. I also break from pattern prayers, as in the case of my tumor. On days leading up to the operation, I spoke directly to my tumor, telling the tumor that I understood why it came into my life, but that it had to be removed. With health, as with all prayer related topics, place them in the clear, affirmative format of what you would like to occur.
I affirm and establish now, and thank God that
my body is whole, well, and free of pain.
Focus on the goal you are seeking, the well state, rather than the medical issue. I believe God knows your current condition, and is aware of your pain. Keep in front of God, what you need God to do for you. When possible, write down the prayer before the prayer session, so you are ready to be clear. Remember that if you truly believe you are healed, you will be healed!
Now back to the meditative prayer session. Depending on your meditative content, your affirmative prayer section may be a few minutes or thirty minutes. I suggest taking all the time you need to clearly state your requests, and clarify your issues, no matter whether they are financial, spiritual, relationship oriented, and/or professional in nature. Any life issues that require assistance are worth mentioning. Note, I do not think God has a time limit; spirit is available to listen, and assist as needed. Your time may be limited, so I have found framing certain types of requests on certain days, or focusing on just one major issue a day, is a way to meet your busy schedule.
In every meditative prayer session, I do what is called “Releasing." This is turning my attention on the fears, worries, self-doubts, lack of confidence, or other issues and blocks that may stand in my way of doing my part in this prayer proposition, and as a result, keep me from being able to receive the answers to my prayers.
In this “releasing session,” which I do after my affirmative prayer requests, I turn the prayer inward, and face these issues. For me, fear and self-doubt are my biggest roadblocks to receiving the answers to my prayers. Life takes active participation, and although God is willing to be my partner, I need to have the strength to make my dreams a reality. I look deep within my psyche, and take an inventory of my doubts, concerns, phobias, and patterns of behavior that may keep me from moving forward.
This releasing section can also be brief, or more extensive, as is the case when I focus on a number of releases. A simple summary “release,” such as the one that follows, may be adequate.
I now connect with and feel all the fear, doubt,
and worry in my body, let it build, bring it to the
surface, and release it now!
When you do your own releasing, you should be able to physically feel this in your body, feel it in your spirit, and bring it to the front of your consciousness. In the book titled –The Sedona Method - Your Key to Lasting Happiness, Success, Peace, and Emotional Well-being, which has been my guide for releasing my resistance, the releaser is asked to answer these simple but profound questions:
Could you allow your resistance into your
Could you welcome it?
Then, could you let it go?
The Sedona Method, written by Hale Dwoskin, defines resistance as, “one of the main things that stops us from having, doing, and being what we want in life. Resistance is like trying to move forward with the brakes on." Understand this is your part – letting go of the resistance - and doing this during prayer with God, can make this an even more effective technique. As I bring forward my resistance, and feel it physically in my entire system, I use the following affirmative statement to complete the release.
Lord, I deny the usefulness of this resistance to my
hopes and dreams, and release it fully now into the
world, or in my case, into the train.
As I do this, I release the tension that has been built up in my body and let it go. I send this resistance into the train along with my fear, self-doubt, or lack of confidence, or whatever I directly name as resistance. This is a healthy cleansing, and an emotionally strengthening addition to prayer, and with God’s help, I also feel it is quite effective. It makes me feel great, and relieved, which is a real plus. So every day, gather all the resistance, deny its usefulness, and release - clearing your soul and preparing you to accomplish your dreams.
TAKING THE TIME TO PRAY FOR OTHERS
Before moving onto full meditation, I usually use this time to pray for others in my life. I use a technique I learned from reading Ernest Holmes, founder of Religious Science. Holmes suggests praying for people as whole, one, and well, and not focusing on the negative issues that may be occurring in their lives. So I always pray for wholeness as follows:
Lord, please be with Alexander today, guide him,
bless him, and keep him whole, complete, and
perfect. Give him insight and help him find his way.
This one I used daily in March and April for my son who had experienced some issues while attending school in Florida. Of course any way you wish to pray for others is your choice – these are only suggestions.
The train rumbles north, towards Northern Virginia for its next stop at Woodbridge, and we notice the tree and water vista, being replaced with small warehouses and town home communities, signaling our entry into the great Washington D.C. megatropolis. After ten or so minutes, the train pulls into Woodbridge, a medium size city, as the conductor shouts over the intercom, “please only exit where you see a uniformed attendant." As the new passengers find their seats, the train pulls out of the station, towns like Lorton appear, with I-95 now insight on the left side of the train, then moving parallel with 395, and finally crossing the Capital beltway.
MEDITATION MADE SIMPLE
Now is the time during our affirmative prayer and meditation session that we will need to truly meditate, to silence our minds. We have discussed a number of tools. such as breathing in, and saying “so,” and breathing out saying “hum.” Likewise, we have discussed the Joppa approach, focused on utilizing the Lord’s Prayer. I would like to take a moment to attempt to further demystify meditation, and reiterate that it is simply any technique that focuses your attention on your breath, so you can stop thinking, and connect with your senses and spirit.
For the clearest guide to meditation available, I will refer you to, and quote from, the world renowned Vietnamese Zen Buddhist, social activist, and master translator of the mindfulness meditation techniques originally taught by Buddha - Thich Nhat Hanh (pronounced Tic Nat Han). This Mindfulness focus in meditation is called Conscious Breathing, and Thich Nhat Hanh suggests that a successful meditative state can be accomplished by breathing in, and verbalizing, either out loud or to yourself, a simple phrase, such as - “Breathing In, I know that I am breathing in,” and then, slowly breathing out, and verbalizing, either out loud or to yourself, “Breathing Out, I know I am breathing out.” The use of these two simple phrases, like the “so-hum”, provides an effective and easy to use method, for focusing on your breathing and controlling your thinking. I quote from Thich Nhat Hanh’s book, Peace in Every Step, that is available on my blogs Spiritual Store, along with all of his works.
You recognize your in-breath as an in-breath and
your out-breath as an out-breath. As you practice
your breath will become peaceful and gentle and your
mind and body will become peaceful and gentle. In a
few minutes you can realize the fruit of meditation.
You can shorten this by simply saying “in” when you breathe in, and “out,” when you breathe out. Thich Nhat Hahn, goes on to instruct, that conscious breathing brings our mind and body together. If you did nothing else, but follow this instruction, you would reap the full benefits of meditation. Use this technique at any point to quiet your mind, and prepare for the silence needed to communicate with God.
WHERE ARE WE NOW?
At this point, you may be thinking, that you will need a train ride across the country to have the time to complete this prayer and meditation, but effectively, what we have accomplished to this point is the following, and all these practices can be adapted to fit your schedule.
1. Prepared for Prayer and Meditation.
2. Used the “so-hum” mantra and moved into a
3. Thanked God for all our current gifts and abundance.
4. Completed a period of affirmative prayer reviewing
our needs and wants with God.
5. Released all that stands in the way of making
6. Took time to pray for others.
Note that we are now half way through our prayer and meditation session, and in the next section we will enter the silence of deep meditation, and communicate directly with God.
COMMUNICATING WITH GOD
Back to the train and our meditation. At this time in my affirmative prayer session, I move back to my use of “so-hum,” or the “breathing in breathing out” mindfulness mantras we just discussed, to reestablish my focus on my breathing, and begin to prepare for the silence. I often repeat a new phrase to ask for God’s guidance - “Lord, be my guide,” more on this shortly.
By now you may be in a good meditative flow, or you may be having to ward off your mind that is vociferously telling you that you should be on your way; if so, resist, and move onto this next section, and enjoy “the silence.” This is the time we dedicate to God, allowing Spirit to communicate directly with us, personally.
Before proceeding, let’s discuss what type of communication we may expect “in the silence.” Honestly, at first, I did not know what to expect, and there was little guidance to prepare me. From my New Thought spiritual orientation, I had heard people speaking of God communicating in “whispers” so faint that, if you didn’t clearly listen, you would miss it completely. Charles Fillmore, the co-founder of the Unity movement, took a business approach to meditative prayer, and spent every night in silence at exactly 7:00 PM, waiting in meditation for God to communicate. In Fillmore’s case, he never did communicate with God during these sessions, but instead connected through his dreams. In fact this communication with God may come as an insight, a visual picture, an emotional feeling, or via some other channel.
Let's look at an example of a communication that occurred during a meditation session on a March train commute in 2009. I received a clearly worded statement that whispered, “Bask in the Warmth.” In the beginning I would ask, what does this mean, and I would get a few more words; in this case it was, “of God’s love.” Ok, then I would repeat - “Bask in the Warmth of God’s Love,” I would keep questioning, and ideas would flow, but not real clarity. After several months, I realized that if I would remember the statement, and close off my meditation session, thanking God for the connection, I could quickly reach for my journal, jot down the line, and start writing a clear stream of consciousness on the subject.
Of course I questioned my sanity early on, and thought my ego was playing tricks on me, but after a few times I become less skeptical. Deep within my core, I knew this was going to be my method of communication. While writing down my meditation notes, I have rarely edited, and overall, have worked hard not to think or question, but just to write as fast, and accurately as possible, as each word unfolded in my mind. After completing over one hundred meditation communications, on a variety of topics that will form the basis for the remainder of this book and the blog, I am now sure this is God’s way of communicating his guidance with me. For me, these continue to be personal communications, and have often addressed questions that were on my mind at the time.
Let’s review, in more depth, the full communication resulting from the opening March train commute meditation whispers we just discussed. After the opening line, I wrote down the following note, as it was received, right after the meditation. Possibly, this may have been a response to my developing fear and anxiety over my operation planned for May and my ability to survive it. This note came more like a poem, which although not typical, filled my heart with the joy, hope, and peace when received.
BASK IN THE WARMTH OF GOD'S LOVE
Bask in the warmth of God’s love. Feel secure in knowing God
is with you even in the tender moments of your grief, the full
moments of your joy, the lost moments of your pain.
Bask in the warmth of God’s love. Step by step God is with
you in the times of fear, the times of courage, the times you
question your intentions, and the times you question God’s.
Bask in the warmth of God’s love and know that God is with
you, inside of you, surrounding you, protecting you, loving
you into full life, full joy, full abundance.
Bask in the warmth of God’s love and know God is with you,
loves you marvels at your growth, and supports the success
and the missteps.
Bask in the warmth of God’s love, energy and growth and
know God knows nothing of your guilt or sin or shame.
Bask in warmth of God’s love and listen for God’s guidance,
support, and assistance. Listen to the whispers, look into
the coincidences, and decipher the opportunities and know
Bask in the warmth of God’s love and rejoice.
NOE 3.14.2009 8:45 AM
The dictionary definition of the word, “bask,” is to, “warm oneself pleasantly, as in the sunlight, or to enjoy the warmth or pleasant feeling from being is a certain environment or situation.” In this case, God was offering the warmth. Since I love words, poetry, prose and beautiful flowing statements, I guess God uses my preferred means of communication. Find the method that works best for you, and I believe God will do the same. Just be flexible and remain open to what happens.
Now is a good to talk about authenticity. Is this an authentic communication from God? The answer here is, no one will ever know for sure, not me, not you. To move forward, you will need to suspend your own disbelief, apply these techniques, and see what happens with your connection. But, if you are like me, you will come face to face with the skeptic in you, who will question every communication.
Even though, my wife Ann and I, were both following a similar spiritual path, It took me about a month of daily communications on the train, before I had the courage to tell her that I was connecting with God, or something, beyond me, and that I was receiving notes with guidance. Saying, I was connecting with God, took a certain audacity, so in the beginning, I said I must be tapping into my spirit guide. Weird, but it seemed more logical than God. Then, I said it must be the Holy Spirit. Sounded a lot more accessible than God. In the end, I asked why me, and the answer I received during meditation was, why not you.
Did I need a special certification, or approval, from the church? Now, I know a few hundred years ago, I would be considered a heretic for just thinking this was possible. Partly, because established religious orders have convinced us that only specially trained representatives, such as, Priests, Bishops, Pastors, Gurus or Shamans, or men or women who have ascended up some spiritual, preordained hierarchy, should be eligible to have the clout to converse with God. But with the help of my friends at Unity and Religious Science, I was able to accept that this direct connection, and communication with God was possible, and available, to all who would listen.
Ok, let’s take a breath and move back to the train and our meditation. The train moves on, traveling east, again returning to the Potomac River, and onto Alexandria, Virginia, the next stop after twenty minutes, and a major spot for tourists and commuters. The Amtrak train stops and loads the new passengers, and moves back along the Potomac River – as views of Washington, DC – stately, beautiful, and powerful join us on the right as we pass the Regan International Airport.
ENTERING THE SILENCE
This, by some standards, would be the time when our session most reflects authentic meditation. Our goal at this time is “Silence.” In Frances W. Foulks’ beautiful classic, titled Effectual Prayer, written in 1923, this Unity icon wrote these words to guide her students:
Indeed the Silence does seem a problem to those who
have never assumed control of their thoughts, who have
never learned the art of relaxation, concentration, of
meditation, of being still and listening within.
I quote this passage, to underscore, that moving into the silence takes practice and patience. The “Monkey Mind," full of chatter, works to fill the silence with more of its “inane antics." It took me many attempts to move into an effective state of silence. To clarify, when you do obtain the silence through use of a mantra, such as, “Lord, be my guide,” and focus on your breathing, the world will be fully alive and anything but silent. On the train, when I move into the silence, I can hear all the sounds and noises of a fast moving train – fully alive – whole – wondrous – as if I have never truly listened. I am in a heightened state of listening and mindfulness, my mind chatter silent, completely "now" focused, fully one and at peace. At this time, I know I have entered the silence, and I am ready to listen for God’s guidance.
As Rev. Foulks said so very long ago:
..steps that are taken to enter the silence where God
dwells and where we hear the “still small voice” with
its words of wisdom, and love, where we contact the
gifts that through eternity have been waiting for us to
become still enough and receptive enough to receive
As I read these words, they underscore what the pursuit of silence has been for me. So getting back to our meditation, your focus now should be on repeating a focus phrase such as, “Lord, please be my guide,” or a mantra of your own design, while focusing on your breathing. As I have said, when you focus on your breathing, your mind chatter cannot verbalize, so you are free to enter and focus on the silence. When you obtain the silence, with its oneness and newness, focus with all of your attention to what you are hearing, feeling, thinking, or visualizing.
This is the time for God’s communication to enter your consciousness. Be careful to edit nothing at this time, and avoid trying to stop any type of expression. At first, I thought that God’s wisdom was mind chatter, and I would disregard the message. If you receive the communication in the form of words, such as, “Clear the Path”, as I did recently, you should say the words over and over, and use them as a mantra for focus. “Clear the Path", thank you God, what does this mean? Clear the Path, what path needs to be cleared? As I mentioned previously, I use questions in hope of finding out more information, and to gain more clarity. On this one occasion, I received a few more words including the phrase, “path to enlightenment,” and as I questioned I wrote the following communication in my journal.
CLEAR THE PATH
The path of enlightenment is before you, waiting for you to move
forward and accept its joyous being. Clear away the baggage you
bring with you to the path, the fears, the worries, the anxiety, your
ego and any other feeling emotion, or memory that is keeping you
from moving forward and evolving.
The sound of peace and prosperity is waiting; it is only you and
your fears that keep you from making this move. What is this
move? It is the complete acceptance of life as it is now – a joy
in living and an emotional connection to it.
Watch. Listen. More will come.
NOE 5.29.2009 7:50 AM
Although this communication is briefer then my usual meditation notes, it is typical in that it provides direct guidance on how I should spiritually move forward. I need to “Clear the Path," or more exactly get out of the way, stop using my fears and emotions to inhibit my progress, accept the direction of my life, and as a result get in alignment. Honestly, as I sat recovering from surgery, and started to write this book, I often questioned the path I was on. It seems like God was saying to me - move forward and get with the program, and stop dragging your feet. As you can see, messages from God, at least for me, are often very direct and honest, and clearly confront my motivation and commitment. As I said, this type of guidance is personal and will be directed to your current life situation.
If you receive a message, you may want to meditate on what it means to you and for your life. You have been given a gift of guidance and direction from God, not necessarily the solution, but possibly the guidance you need. If the communication comes in terms of a vision, or picture, or impression focus your efforts on the communication and ask God questions to clarify. As I said previously, when I receive guidance, I quickly attempt to document the communication by closing the session and reaching for my journal. When I first started out and received my initial communications, I would remember the line or message, and review it throughout the day to explore its meaning. Again, I would highly recommend keeping a journal of your meditative prayer sessions with God,and work on understanding the full message.
In my experience, these messages can be quite clear and direct. Eat What is On Your Plate, the Meditation Guidance shown below, is a message I received when I kept asking God for more, before I utilized what I had already been given.
EAT WHAT IS ON YOUR PLATE
Eat the food that is on your plate. You have been given a
banquet, a feast of spiritual direction - like Lao Tzu at the
gate. It is time to process, devour, eat of the word and
translate and communicate the word.
You sit with a full plate and ask for more. You cannot get
more until you understand the essence of what you have in
front of you. Do not gobble the food - wipe your mouth with
your hand and stick out the plate for another feeding.
Savor, enjoy, discuss, and relish the direction you have
directly received. The bounty, the truth is in front of you,
for you to process, for you to live, for you to communicate.
You are the messenger and you need to clarify the message.
It has been given to you in servings - but each serving of a
course relates to another.
You need to create the work and offer it to the world. You
need to fully comprehend what you have eaten - incorporate
and fully comprehend. These are not 'notes" these are in its
entirety the "note on enlightenment.” Transcribe, collect,
publish, communicate, and I will prepare the way. This is the
guidance you seek - this is the crystal path - this is the way.
Eat what is on your plate!
NOE 1.31.2009 8:00 AM
This meditation note was written in my journal, unedited and transcribed, in about ten minutes. As you can see from this note, it is very clear what God is trying to express - along with the sense of frustration that I had not done anything with these notes, but write them in my journal. I transcribed this note on January 31, 2009, and four months later I finally put pen to paper and began this book. In Part Two Of Finding God On The Train, I will focus on this Message and what I feel God has been communicating.
As you gain more confidence, and a fuller relationship with God, you will be in awe at times with what has been communicated, and the blessing that exists in simply connecting. At other times, you may be challenged, confronted, and possibly annoyed, as God prods and guides you into the fuller life of your dreams.
At this point in the meditation process, you will take control, and learn how to pace yourself. If you have heard the “still small voice” whispering, you will determine based on your schedule, how long you may wish to continue. Enjoy yourself, if you have the time or can make time; this will be a major moment in your life.
When your are ready, you should gently close out your meditation, rather than abruptly ending the session, after you have gotten what you needed. Always end the session with thanks and gratitude to God for entering into your life. Thank God for taking the time to talk with you, and provide you with guidance and direction. Thank God for all that you have,and all that waits for you to have. Thank God, for the love and kindness and the abundance, Spirit has provided.
As you prepare to end the session, another excellent opportunity arises for you to pray for others and the world. You will never be closer to God than you are at this moment, make the most of it. At this time during my sessions I give thanks and pray for anyone who I did not pray for earlier and end my session with a simple thank you. I bring my hands together in prayer, touch my lips to the tips of my fingers, and then outstretch my arms with palms forward. This is my ritual, and I am sure you will develop one that works for you. I then open my eyes and I am ready to reenter the world energized, enthused, refreshed, and rejuvenated. I am ready for a great day!
As the train crosses the railroad bridge over the Potomac, with the magnificence of D.C. in front and the river on both sides below, I humbly thank God for the opportunity to work in such a stunning world, full of symbols, architecture, and icons of America's present and past. As the train slowly proceeds, the Tidal Basin and the Washington Monument appear to the left, followed by the National Mall. Directly passing the Jefferson Memorial, as the full beauty of the Tidal Basin unfolds in front of us, we pull into L’Enfant Plaza with the U.S. Capital in sight. Then, the train rolls towards our final destination, through the underground railroad tunnels to Union Station, just one block from the U.S. Capital.
WHAT IF NOTHING HAPPENS?
Let’s take a step back and answer this question - what if you do this day after day and there is no communication? You have followed all the techniques and no epiphany (an appearance of God), no message, no vision, NO - NOTHING! I would suggest that you continue this practice for all of your meditations, response or no response. On its own merits, this practice allows you to enter the “now” and "mindfulness” and easily brings your mind to a true meditative state.
I would estimate that millions of people follow similar practices each day without expectation of communication, solely because it connects them with God and infinite intelligence. This is usually the only chance any of us have to reach this state of peace and beauty. It also reduces your stress level, eases anxiety, and lowers your blood pressure as much as ten to twenty points. Meditation is good for both your physical and spiritual self and should be practiced daily.
Ok, back to the NO - NOTHING! Let’s understand that during the session you have clearly expressed to God your desire for personal guidance and assistance and I believe God always responds to you in some form, some manner, and some way during the day. Be alert, be expectant, and the guidance and assistance will most surely come to you. I believe my guidance came verbally, because this is my skill area – words and writing come easily and move easily through me. God may express guidance through your art or creativity – through dance, music – or through your work or relationships. Know that God will provide what you need. I needed a lot of guidance and received direction to write this book so I received words and concepts I could convey. If you remain observant, I am positive you will be pleased with the communication you develop with God.
Remember your meditative prayer session is your work of art, and you should create and organize it to fit your spiritual needs. As you see, I have sewn together the fabric of my session, as I have learned or mastered a new idea or technique. I am always adding to the mix, such as the technique I learned from Joel Osteen, my favorite positive Pastor of all time. Joel said once the he would breathe in "strength" and breathe out "weakness.” I use this to breathe is success – breathe out failure, breathe in confidence and breathe out fear. This is a great technique that I have incorporated into my sessions, and it constantly bolsters my spirit, breathing in the positive – breathing out the negative. Try it – I use it throughout the day as well as during meditation, it works. So feel free to adapt this guide to meet your needs but keep focusing on the basics of meditative prayer.
For a successful session you need to do the following.
· Prepare a time and space to pray.
· Be in a relaxed, meditative state.
· Start with thanks and gratitude.
· Ask God to guide you through the day.
· Use clear, positive, affirmative requests.
· Pray for others as whole and well.
· Release the fear, worry, or insecurities
standing in your way of receiving.
· Meditate deeply and ask God to be your
guide and communicate.
· Listen and record.
· End in thanks.
For me, affirmative prayer and meditation has changed my life, and I am both grateful and awed. I firmly believe God is with us all, and anyone who wishes, and is willing to listen to the “still small voice,” in whatever way God manifests, will be successful communicating and forming a lasting connection with God, Spirit, Source, Infinite Intelligence, I AM, or whatever name you care to use. The God I know is loving, kind, and caring, and is ready and waiting to provide you with a full abundant life. It is our job as cocreators to be willing to do our part, and be ready to receive the joyous answers to our prayers.
The Amtrak, this morning, pulls into Union Station at 8:15 AM,on schedule, and the train is full with passengers and the remaining commuters that make the entire trip. I watch, as many of my fellow commuters wake up from their naps. I pack my reading material and my meditation journal, turn on my iPhone and Blackberry, and check for messages, wait ing for the conductor to open the door. Most of the passengers will continue on with the train, as it heads north, but along with the remaining commuters, I detrain and make my way to Union Station. I will have coffee and my second breakfast at the Au Bon Pain in the bustling train station with its stunning architecture, upscale boutique shops, and restaurants. After I eat, I walk down to Mass Avenue to meet my shuttle to work, and in twenty minutes will be sitting at my desk.
CLOSING NOTE ON ENLIGHTENMENT
I would like to end this chapter with two closing meditation notes. The first tilted, Silent Spaces, which will prepare us for our personal connection with God, anywhere we are so fortunate to find God – whether we find god on the train, on the bus, on the subway, on the commuter van, in a taxi, in the airport, on the plane, in our back yards, at a highway rest stop, waiting to pick our kids up at school, in our office, or relaxing on a park bench - connecting with God is all about quieting our minds and entering into the silence. Within this silence, we are able to connect with the divinity within, and hear God, possibly for the first time. Within this silent space, if we stop making noise, there is a passageway to the eternal, to God’s guidance. This note below was my clear instruction from God to be quiet and start listening.
THE SILENT SPACES
See and hear the silent spaces - the moments of no sound –
the empty moments between the active tone and movement.
In the silent space there is an opening – the passageway to
the eternal core. All of life’s noise covers the magic of no
sound, no movement, nothing, no substance, and no thought.
In this opening is a place of peace – the mind’s rest, the
vision peace – look between - focus between – in this space
is the center. Look at the empty moment and realize its
abundance – dance to its music, hum its tune – whirl like a
dervish in the ecstasy of non-ness.
Stop making noise in the world – the ego wishes and desires
noise as an affirmation of existence. The ego lives by racket –
like a child in mid tantrum – it waits for the world to respond
to its noise.
Seek the silence – move your eyes to the empty space between
the mass and the substance. In this space exists the fluid of
God – the essence of source that glues together the fabric of
Sit, meditate, and pray in silence – listen to only your breath
and ask for guidance. In the silence, the spirit of all life creation
can hear you and will respond. Stop talking, mumbling, chanting,
affirming, and listen to the silent spaces and the message.
NOE 1.21.2008 9:30 AM
The second Meditation Guidance, below, is titled, Come to God Alone. I feel it summarizes all we have experienced, and learned, during our train ride connection with God. Just you, God, and the silence, are all that is needed to connect and communicate. In the silence, you will find the whispered word of God.
COME TO GOD ALONE
Come to God alone and connect directly through prayer,
meditation, and contemplation. Alone within the silence -
God is there waiting for you to quiet the chatter of your
ego mind – a mind caught up in the trivial and the mundane.
In the silence, you will find God waiting for you with the
answers and the guidance you seek. There is no need for
a go between – no need for a priest, pastor, rabbi or guru –
you are the center of God and have always been able to
connect directly - alone.
The God waits for you in the silence – the indication you
are prepared to receive. Move towards your waiting God
alone – in the silence – and listen to the words of ture love.
The whispered word of God.
As we discussed, affirmations are positive statements announcing to God – universal mind – and to your own subconscious mind, how you view the world and what you expect to occur during the day or in your life. It is a powerful way to use the Law of Mind Action or Attraction, to frame your reality and set positive expectations. The affirmation below titled, Positive Thought And Action, is for daily use, and when recited in the morning each day, it has been a powerful tool for pointing my thoughts in a positive direction. I often pull this affirmation out during the day, when my thoughts need a reorientation. As with all affirmations this is most effective when read out loud.
POSITIVE THOUGHT AND ACTION
Today my words, thoughts, and actions are positive, affirming,
and true. Cleared away and forgotten and cleansed are any
thoughts of lack, anger, resentment or negative impressions –
replaced instantly by thoughts of love, kindness, admiration,
and glad tidings.
Today my words reflect the perfect nature of all I meet or contact,
and the positive essence of all situations I encounter. My words
thoughts, and actions are positive, affirming, and empowering,
aiding me, and others I encounter, in our spiritual growth and
attainment of power and peace.
We have covered much ground in Part One – My Spiritual and Life Journey, and I hope you will continue on the train with me to our next stop on our quest for a positive personal spirituality; Part Two – The Message, which features an in-depth review of what God has communicated to me on the train.
I would like to close with the poem below, and asalways, thank you so much for reading. With love, G.
GOD WITHIN WAITING
I search for God within - waiting -
deep within the soul of my existence.
I search for God within - waiting -
to clear away the pursuits of my existence.
I search for God within - waiting -
the source of all existence.
I search for God within - waiting -
the pure essence of my life - your life – all life.
I search for God within - waiting.