This Madness Has To End & We Can Do It

I have always said to myself that I would never mix Politics with our Religion. I have now learned you never say “never.” If you do, it will come back to bite you and I have got bit!

We are sitting here listening to the President talk about the Government shut down. I guess I thought down here in Kentucky we would never see the effects of  this. I know what I have seen locally and I would imagine it is going on every where, people are starting to hurt. I have seen parents that live from paycheck to paycheck wondering how they are going to feed their kids, put a roof over their heads, buy diapers and the list goes on and on. The Food Banks are empty because the grant money has stopped. There are people in this country either going hungry or will be hungry if this last much longer.

The individuals that we elected do not live in our world. They are still getting their salaries and all their other little perks. They don’t realize what they are doing to the average person in this country. It is time for the madness to end before the greatest country on this planet becomes a third world country.

You know I believe strongly in what we can do when we come together. It is that time again that I ask you to please join with me in ending this madness. Together, we are a mighty force. You have seen evidence in the past of what we can do. We can do it again. We have to do it for the sake of the people of this country. You know as well as I do, we have brothers & sisters that are starting to suffer. We have to do it for them. All it takes to solve this problem is all of us joining together as one. Uniting our Power again for the goodness of mankind.

Below you will find a very simple spell. All it requires is a white candle and a little visualization on your part. Please join with me nightly in casting it, it won’t take thirty minutes I promise. We have to do this. The madness has to end. We have to end it. Washington doesn’t realize how it is hurting the people of this country. Let us join together once again and put an end to this madness.

Now that the dust has settled
And the heat of the moment has passed
Help (The House/Senate/Congress) come together
To create legislation that will last
Let them realize the time for fighting is over
Let the healing begin
Let all involved acknowledge
In this fight, no one wins
Suffering comes to all
Help them put their differences aside
Let their pride no longer stay
Let them instead mend their quarrels
And let harmony rule our Country once again.
So Mote It Be

‘THINK on THESE THINGS’ for October 8th

By Joyce Sequichie Hifler

Isn’t it true that when someone says something is wrong, our first thought is, “What have I done wrong now?” That constant fear of having a finger of accusation pointed in our direction – that guilt complex that can plague us into admitting guilt when it isn’t ours.

Shakespeare wrote, “The mind of guilt is full of scorpions.” And surely it is. For we often take more on with a feeling of guilt than is required of us. It is more often a feeling of fear, fear of being ridiculed, blamed, or even threatened.

A guilt complex can be erased. Not in a day, and maybe not completely, unless we are dedicated to keeping it out of our minds. We are so prone to throw fuel on the fire that we must always be completely aware of the thoughts we entertain.

But certainly, with turning to our innate faith and wisdom we can find enough courage to recognize the ghosts of guilt and see them for what they are.

Perhaps in the final analysis we find we were not guilty at all. We feel relieved, but if we were guilty, the relief of admitting mistakes is just as great.

Available online! ‘Cherokee Feast of Days’
By Joyce Sequichie Hifler.

Visit her web site to purchase the wonderful books by Joyce as gifts for yourself or for loved ones……and also for those who don’t have access to the Internet:
Click Here to Buy her books at

Elder’s Meditation of the Day
By White Bison, Inc., an American Indian-owned nonprofit organization. Order their many products from their web site:

Elder’s Meditation of the Day – October 8

Elder’s Meditation of the Day – October 8

“I think there was a big mistake made (when) people separated religion and the government. That was one of the big mistakes that was made, because when they did that, then they removed the Creator from their life – or at least from half to three-quarters of their life.”

–Tom Porter, MOHAWK

The Elders tell us that every thing the Creator made is interconnected. Nothing can be separated. The Elders say we should pray before we do anything. We should ask the Creator, what do You want us to do? We are put on the Earth to do the will of God. If we run our governments, communities, families or ourselves without the spiritual we are doomed to failure.

My Creator, guide my life to include the spiritual in everything I do.

October 8 – Daily Feast

October 8 – Daily Feast

St. James says to keep quiet, control your tongue – though no one ever has. Your boat may be huge, but your little tongue is a rudder that can turn a very big ship in the wrong direction. The tongue is like kindling wood that can set a whole woods on fire. Keep your tongue quiet, very quiet. And then St. Mark says to speak – speak to the mountain and tell it to be gone. Not only be gone but sink into the sea. A mountain of trouble needs us to use our tongues. Speak what you want and need, not what you do not want. There is a time to speak and a time to keep silence. These are the times that make us who we are, what we are, and what we will have. Life and death are in the power of the tongue.

~ You say you are right and we are wrong. How do you know this to be true? ~


‘A Cherokee Feast of Days, Volume II’ by Joyce Sequichie Hifler

The Daily Motivator for Oct. 8th – Looking happy and being happy

Looking happy and being happy

Happiness is not based on the way you appear. Happiness is an authentic state  of being that you can choose.

When you are truly happy, people around you will no doubt see it. Yet there’s  so much more to being happy than merely looking happy.

If you’re striving to impress others with how happy you are, you’re not happy  at all. Let go of the striving and the needs, and allow happiness.

You can be happy doing nothing. You can be happy doing anything.

Happiness does not come from the situation the person is in. Happiness comes  from the person who is in the situation.

Be the person to allow happiness. And you can experience it at any and every  time and place.

— Ralph Marston

The Daily Motivator

Daily OM for October 8th – Objects of Power

Objects of Power


by Madisyn Taylor


Having a talisman imbued with your intention is yet another tool you can use to assist you in your journey.

For millennia, mankind has found peace and solace in objects of significance. When cleansed and consecrated through ritual, such objects – be they gems, amulets, herbs, or written words – become talismans. A talisman is any item imbued with a specific power by its bearer to serve a specific intention. Ancient Egyptians used massive stone tablets as healing talismans while the Greeks and Romans used lead talismans to communicate with the spirit realm. Traditionally, a talisman acts to anchor energy in the physical plane. That energy may be protective in nature or may be intended to draw abundance, wealth, or a wide variety of blessings to its user. Today, a talisman may be made of wood, metal, paper, stone, or natural elements such as plants. Often, talismans are small enough to be easily worn or carried, and they may be marked with words or symbols that the talisman’s owner deems meaningful.

Creating and owning a talisman can reassure you and also serve to aide you in attracting what you want in life. You may use your talisman to help you attain health, security, or good luck. Or you may simply want to carry an object with you that will remind you of your search for soulful tranquility. In order to create a talisman, you must first determine its physical properties. This can be as innocuous as a strip of paper bearing the word “Love” and carried in a wooden box or cloth sack. You may prefer a more visible talisman, such as a metal amulet or a gemstone worn as jewelry. Before your object becomes a talisman, however, it must be charged. This can be done by cleansing the object – with water or with incense – and holding a ritual of your own making. Or, you can leave the object in moonlight or sunlight or bury it in the earth for a time. To preserve its effectiveness, talismans should be reconsecrated regularly.

Almost any object can be transformed into a talisman of protection, good fortune, health, love, or serenity. It may be strung on a cord and hung around the neck, worn on a belt, or carried in a purse or pocket. But the physical properties of the talisman are not as important as the intention of its bearer. If you are grounded in your desires, your talisman will give you a focal point that you can concentrate on to affirm your intention and help you achieve your goals

Daily OM

For The Kids…….

While I was searching for graphics, I ran across some fun things for our children. One was a site that had print out graphics for children to color. I will be posting some of these off and on during the Holiday season. If you would like to visit the site, it’s url is



The Reincarnation Theory Of Otherkin

The Reincarnation Theory Of Otherkin

Author:   Lupa   

Otherkin are a pretty controversial group of people, even within the relatively tolerant realms of NeoPaganism. While we live within the same world as everyone else, working and/or going to school, building and maintaining a variety of relationships, paying the bills, and otherwise leading completely mundane existences, we have other aspects to our personal realities that aren’t quite so everyday. We know/believe that there’s something not quite human about us and we can spend this entire lifetime figuring out just who we’ve been and who we are now.

Some identify as nonhuman, relatively humanoid species such as elves and faeries; others believe there is something of the dragon, gryphon or sea serpent about them; and still others identify strongly with animals native to this plane, well beyond the totemic bond. Yes, it can be a bit of a brain-breaker to try to resolve the conflict between what’s commonly divided into “fantasy” and “reality.” That’s why most `kin spend time trying to figure out just why it is we feel that we’re different in a such a….er…different manner.

One of the most common explanations for being Otherkin is reincarnation. This necessitates a belief in a soul, of course, and the belief that the soul is not species-specific. While some people say that once a(n) (insert species here), always a(n) (insert species here), others maintain that the soul is itself neutral and can be incarnated into any body possible.

Neutral as the soul may be, it still tends to carry material with it from life to life, depending on how strongly the experiences of each life imprinted on it. Some souls are better at keeping their egos intact through each death-birth process than others; this is perhaps why some people have thorough recollections of their previous existences while others have just a few tidbits here and there. It just so happens that for a few people the memories that imprint strongly don’t come from this particular Earth-reality.

It’s debatable whether these lives occurred on alternate Earths or physically different planets entirely. Some Otherkin seem to have a really good idea of where they come from, even being able to pinpoint galaxies or individual stars that correlate to our Sol. I’ve also heard people claim the idea that our world and numerous others inhabit the same basic place, but are layered according to energy resonance (think physical vs. astral plane).

It’d be easy to accuse Otherkin of simply being entirely too imaginative. After all, aren’t elves and such meant to be in the realms of fantasy fiction or, at best, the spirit plane? This is where belief comes into play. Even the most solid cases of reincarnation can’t be thoroughly proven, and sometimes we do have to go on faith to an extent. Consistency seems to be the key to a more likely story. Repeated past life regressions that continually bring up the same people, places, themes and identities are a lot easier to argue for than a single wishful thought that the bearer is afraid to test for fear of being wrong. Some Otherkin, particularly among elves, report shared memories with others, including incidents where the two (or more) parties had not previously communicated with each other on the subject.

The truly skeptical can argue against this all day long—what if one or more people were just saying “Yeah, I remember that,” to go along with the crowd? What if it’s a group delusion? What if? What if?

It’s important to stringently question ourselves and not blindly accept whatever comes our way that looks pretty. Yet if we chase away belief entirely we shut ourselves off from a lot of potentially positive developments in our lives. After all, belief is the basis of spirituality and magic, and Gods know that enough Pagans, Otherkin and otherwise, desire or even need these things in our lives. So while we’ll acknowledge the words of the skeptics and keep close watch on ourselves to make sure we don’t convince ourselves that pixie ‘kin really can fly, we will allow ourselves some belief to explore our possible pasts.

As to why we ended up here, there are a number of possibilities:

Because we needed to learn something about being human. Many reincarnationists believe that we enter into the lives that we do in order to learn a specific lesson. There are quite possibly lessons that only the unique experience of being human can teach. Perhaps some `kin are here to better understand humanity so that they can therefore adopt certain human behaviors. Maybe Earth today has a balance of creation and destruction, Nature and technology, that is unique in the Multiverse. Perhaps some of us came here from someplace better as punishment/rehabilitation for some wrongdoing; or maybe from somewhere worse so we can get a breather (after all, this place certainly isn’t all bad!) Just as a soul may be born as a cougar to learn to be more aggressive or a way to learn patience, the experience of being human might be how some souls learn what to do—or not do—with modern technology, or our particular blend of sex and love, or whatever else it is that makes us human.

Because this world needs our help. Let’s face it—to a lot of folk in the magical and Otherkin subcultures, this place is in trouble. The environment is constantly under siege, millions of humans live in poverty-stricken, war-torn areas, disease is rampant and some days it just seems like the whole biosystem is about to collapse under the pressure. There are Otherkin who feel they came here with the purpose of alleviating some of the pain. There’s the theory that other sentient places in the Multiverse are well aware of us and want to try to help us, if for no other reason than to keep us from destroying everything around us. So souls come from these places in order to help out what is seen as a state of emergency. Take the concept of thinking globally, and expand it across the Multiverse. Predictably many of the Otherkin under this heading dedicate themselves to social, political, spiritual and related causes meant to make a positive impact.

Because we walked in. Walk-ins are a unique group among Otherkin; they’re not really so much a category as another explanation. A walk-in is a soul that enters a body well after birth. In some cases this happens at a point when the original soul abandons it (often at a time of great physical/emotional/etc. trauma, though this is not always the case). Other times the walk-in soul shares the body with the original soul. The souls involved may all have had nothing but human lives, but they show up in the `kin community commonly because it’s a safe haven for them to be open about who and what they are. Walk-ins may come in with a purpose, or simply with a curious desire to have a body again but not wanting or being able to enter a newborn body.

Oops. Species dysphoria does occasionally occur among Otherkin. This means that there are those who fully believe they were born into the completely wrong body. I’ve seen this most commonly among therianthropes—those who identify as nonhuman, Earth-native animals—but it happens in other groups as well. Stories vary as to why the soul ended up in the wrong body, ranging from “Well, I thought I was headed into a fox kit, but I guess I missed” to “I’m here against my will because of something I did in another life” (see the first theory listed above).

I dunno. You tell me. There are plenty of Otherkin who have absolutely no idea how they got here. While some do search for answers, many just shrug, chalk it up to unknown forces and go on with their lives.

Again, it’s entirely possible that we’re all just over-imaginative or even delusional; but then again, the same could arguably be said for anyone who claims to believe in reincarnation, spirits or magic. No doubt there are probably plenty who claim the Otherkin label who probably do need to do a lot more seeking before they come to this conclusion; after all, when you don’t feel you fit into this world, escapism can become an extreme behavior in a tiny fraction of individuals. Needless to say, there are thousands of people in this world who are Otherkin, who identify as such and who live perfectly functional, happy lives with no ill effects from their identities. The theory of reincarnation offers many of us a way to explain this feeling of being Other, so we can find peace with ourselves in our entirety.

The Veil as Seen Through the Eyes of a Witch

The Veil as Seen Through the Eyes of a Witch

Author:   Crick   

As I near my twilight years I begin to think of death. Not as a final stage, but rather as a doorway standing before me. The door is closed but through it I shall enter, as we all must at some point in time. Our Sacred Mother decides upon such a time, for it is she who sends her children forth into the Chautauqua of Life. And it is she who calls them back home.

For some the journey is but a moment in time, like a shooting star that appears ever so briefly. One of my sons was such a shining star, here and gone ever so quickly. Like a ripple across a quiet pond, he touched our hearts and then was gone. His moment of existence resonated in our souls like a song that will never end.

For others the stay is longer, like errant children with so much to learn. Perhaps it is life lessons to be repeated or maybe a lesson of our selves unto others. For we all are students of life, seeking to find the answers that allow us to grow. However, at the end of the day, it becomes time for us to return home.

Sometimes we face this return with trepidation, like children who want to stay out past dark. However it is children that we are and when our mother calls it is time to go home. For our knowledge of what lies behind the door that leads through the veil is not a reality. We are like small children whose whole sense of reality has been confined to a small fenced in back yard. We have no real awareness of the whole wide world that lies just beyond our gate.

As we go through this life, we sometimes find ourselves in a state of physical pain. The reason for this I cannot fathom or answer as to why. For the ways of Deity, are not for us to know at this stage in our development. For us to have such knowledge is to be as one with our Sacred Mother. Perhaps the pain that such folks endure is a lesson from another life. Or perhaps it is the beginning of a lesson in this current life.

We often feel love and compassion for those who experience such, and then perhaps that is the lesson intended for us. In the end, only Deity has the answers to such. As it is, when it becomes my turn to stand before the door leading to the corridor of transition from this life to that, I can only hope that I do so with a sense of dignity.

The dear Goddess has given us many gifts in the way of experiences. Some of these lessons were tinged with pain while others carried a note of joy. She has created a complex harmony with numerous opportunities to learn about ourselves and indeed to learn about others as well.

Many folks in this life will mill about at the foot of the mountain of life, their hearts and minds poisoned with fear of what lies ahead. And so their journey through this life will be compromised and with closed eyes, dwelling on what may or may not be.

I personally believe that this persona of fear has been initiated and exploited by those who would seek to control the thoughts and actions of those who succumb to such implanted paranoia’s.

As a witch though, I walk through this existence as an individual. And will indeed climb to the top of the mountain of life, seeing each arduous step, as merely another stride in the spiritual growth that awaits each of us. And once the peak is reached I will extend my hands to the skies and whisper a heartfelt thank you to Deity. Thus in this manner, giving a sign of appreciation for the opportunity to have experienced the lessons of this realm as we become that much closer to the final goal of being one with Deity.

From the moment that we take our first breath, we are walking towards the door that leads through the veil. And so when Deity extends their hand and beckons me forth, I will do as was planned prior to my existence in this realm.

Granted, there will be feelings of sadness, for one cannot enter this realm without creating a comfort zone composed of family and friends. But then there will also be feelings of curiosity and anticipation and of course many unanswered questions.

For instance will Deity be awaiting our crossing with open arms? Will those friends and family who have made the journey before us be waiting to greet and acclimate us to our new existence? Will our Spirit Guides who have planted the seeds of lessons and watched as these lessons blossomed into newfound knowledge be there to congratulate us? Will there be yet other teachers and/or personas from ages past waiting to test us anew?

Will we be allowed to take a moment to contemplate the experiences garnered while in this realm or will we awaken in yet another existence as if our level of awareness was momentarily put on hold? Will our existence in this realm resonate in our ken as but a moment in the over all framework of existence?

Of course all of these questions are pure speculation, as we do not have the knowledge at this point in our spiritual growth to answer such musings. But we do have the ability and knowledge as pagans to break away and reject the mind and heart numbing fear that others would impose upon us for their own limited and selfish devices.

Deity created this path of life, death and rebirth, not man. And therefore I place my trust in the grand scheme of things as designed by Deity rather then the tunnel vision of those who would pervert such ideals into something to be feared and distorted.

And so in summation, I will live my life as a Witch and when it comes time to walk through the veil, I will stroll through as a Witch…

Relaxation Ritual

Relaxation Ritual
It is good to do this ritual before any other rituals are performed.

Sit or lay in a place where you will not be disturbed for at least five minutes.
Get comfortable. If you are sitting, you back should be straight. Whether
sitting or lying down, your arms and legs should not be crossed. If sitting,
rest your hands, palms down, in your lap. Your eyes should be closed.

Visualize a ball of beautiful, warm light surrounding your feet. If you can not
“see” the ball of light when you visualize it, that is okay. Just know that it
is there. truly know that if your powers of visualization were different, you
would be able to see it. The ball of golden warm light always brings peace and
total relaxation. Wherever the ball of light goes, tension departs. Let it go,
and as it goes, feel your feet filled with the warm, golden glow of peace and
total relaxation.

Now allow this ball to rise up your legs and up your torso. Then allow it to go
down your arms to your fingers, and finally up your neck and into your head
until you are completely covered with the warm, golden glow of total peace and
relaxation, and all tension is gone. If you notice tension anywhere, send the
ball of light there and the tension will vanish.

Stay in this state of deep relaxation for a few moments. Know that you can
return to this state whenever you like simply by doing the relaxation ritual. If
you are having trouble sleeping, try this instead of suffering or taking
dangerous pills. Be at one with yourself.

It is important not to go from a state of deep relaxation into total alertness;
the effectiveness of this ritual would be lost. when you are ready to come out
of this state of deep relaxation, take three deep breaths and feel fresh life
and energy coming into your body with each breath. be sure to record your

Meditation Techniques


In order to let ourselves relax, it is useful to start from a place of peace, a
center, a point of stability, so the first step, will be to take ourselves to
that place.
Relax and sit back.. Close your eyes, and let your mind start to drift..
Breathe slowly, and deeply, breath from your diaphragm, from your center.. And
as you breathe, sit straight, but remain comfortable.. As you straighten, so
does your spine, and like a pole, it connects you between the ground below and
the airy sky above.. Feel the energy tingle at both ends of the pole that is
your spine, and let the energy flow from the earth, up your spine, and out the
top of your head, dispersing back into the glorious star-filled universe above..
As this energy flows, let it carry with it all the negative emotions, pain,
frustrations, bothers, and tensions that you have built up.. Let it carry those
tensions up through you, and out of you, and let new energy, and a peaceful
state of relaxation fade in slowly..
Now, let yourself relax, and if you want, let yourself sink backwards until you
are lying flat on the ground.. Let your mind drift, and let any thoughts that
surface just surface and float away, like bubbles on a calm day. You can and
will remember them later if you want, but for now, just let them go, and let
yourself float. Breathe deeper, and slow your breathing down with every
breath.. And with every breath, relax your body and your mind even further, and
the more relaxed you get, let your breath slow even more.. (repeat this a few
times, then pause)
Now as you relax, feel yourself enveloped in a cool, comforting red mist.. It’s
neither hot nor cold, and you can just barely feel it against your skin.. Let
it swirl around you, and relax. Feel yourself lying on a cloud, solid enough to
support you, but very very cushioned, very very comfortable. Every part of your
body is supported by this cloud, your feet.. your legs.. your arms.. your back..
your neck.. your head.. all cushioned, all supported, all very very
comfortable.. Now the cloud slowly starts to sink through the red mist, carrying
you along with it.. very, very slowly, and very very comfortably you are carried
deeper and deeper into relaxation.. The mist around you slowly begins to change
from the deep lustrous red, to the beautiful orange of a fall sunset.. slowly,
slowly.. The orange lightens, and the mist changes color to a soothing lemon
yellow.. and as the color lightens, so does your body, you float on the cloud
that carries you barely touching it.. and slowly, the yellow darkens to the
verdant hue of a summer lawn, a green so beautiful, you can almost hear the wind
blowing through grass stalks.. and slowly, the green deepens to the blue of a
summer sky, beautiful and brilliant, an azure heaven surrounding you, and you
still float downward on the cloud.. resting lightly, relaxed and comfortable..
Now the blue darkens and deepens to the midnight purple blue of the moonless
night, dark and peaceful, quiet.. and you feel the cloud you have been riding
touch down gently..
And the mist fades away, and you are lying on your back, on a patch of grass.
The wind blows lightly over you, a very full moon pours down light onto the
field, and you can hear ever so faintly, the crickets and other night insects
chirping in the distance..
Wherever you are now, there will be something that draws you towards
might be a path, it might be a place, it might be another person in the field
with you.. There can be anything here that you desire, because this is your
sacred space, your heart of dreams.. In this place, anything can change, but it
can only change as you let it.. Since you have built this place, you have
furnished it, you have populated it.. It is a place for you to go to explore
yourself, and your connections to the world around you.. Go now, and explore
this area for a time, taking note of what interests you, speaking to whomever
you encounter and wish to.. (LONG pause)
Very slowly, you come to realize that it is time for you to bid farewell for now
to this place. Say farewell to whatever creatures you have conversed with.. bid
farewell for now to any things that you wanted to look at, but have not yet had
time to examine.. They shall be here if you ever choose to return.. Know that
you can return here if you wish to, just by willing it, and bid this place
farewell.. Let yourself lie down again in any small clearing in the place..
Feel the mist, comfortable and relaxing, close in over you again, dark as the
midnight moonless sky, and feel the comfortable cloud form again under your
feet.. your legs.. your arms.. your back.. your neck.. your head.. feel it
support you, and begin to rise, very very slowly, very very comfortably..
breathe deeply, and relax, and rise upwards, and let the dark sky of midnight
fade to the azure blue of noon.. slowly, slowly, rising.. the blue deepens to
the verdant green of a summer lawn, and the cloud keeps rising slowly.. slowly
the green lightens and is replaced by the soothing lemon yellow.. and slowly,
slowly, you keep rising.. and the yellow deepens to the beautiful orange of the
summer sunset, and you rise again slowly, slowly, until the orange fades, and is
replaced by the deep soothing red..
Let your mind still float, and your body remain relaxed, but very very slowly
start to ease back into the feeling of the floor under your back, the sense of
people around you in the room..(long pause to let everyone recenter)
okay. (said, makes sure everyone breaks the trance if they are still in one).

Essential Advice On Meditation

excerpts from Teachings by Sogyal Rinpoche

When you read books about meditation, or often when meditation is
is  presented by different groups, much of the emphasis falls  on
the techniques. In the West, people tend to be very interested in
the  “technology”  of  meditation.  However,  by  far  the   most
important feature of meditation is not technique, but the way  of
being,  the  spirit, which is callled the  “posture”,  a  posture
which  is  not so much physical, but more to do  with  spirit  or
It  is  well  to recognize that when you start  on  a  meditation
practice,  you  are  entering a totally  different  dimension  of
reality.  Normally  in life we put a great deal  of  effort  into
achieving  things,  and  there is a  lot  of  struggle  involved,
whereas  meditation is just the opposite, it is a break from  how
we normally operate.
Meditation  is  simply a question of being, of  melting,  like  a
piece  of  butter  left in the sun. It has  nothing  to  do  with
whether  or not you “know” anything about it, in fact, each  time
you  practice  meditation  it  should be fresh,  as  if  it  were
happening  for  the very first time. You just quietly  sit,  your
body  still,  your speech silent, your mind at  ease,  and  allow
thoughts to come and go, without letting them play havoc on  you.
If you need something to do, then watch the breathing. This is  a
very  simple process. When you are breathing out, know  that  you
are  breathing  out.  When  you breath  in,  know  that  you  are
breathing  in, without supplying any kind of extra commentary  or
internalized mental gossip, but just identifying with the breath.
That  very simple process of mindfulness processes your  thoughts
and emotions, and then, like an old skin being shed, something is
peeled off and freed.
Usually  people  tend  to  relax the  body  by  concentrating  on
different  parts.  Real  relaxation comes  when  you  relax  from
within,  for  then  everything else will ease  itself  out  quite
When  you begin to practice, you center yourself, in  touch  with
your  “soft spot”, and just remain there. You need not  focus  on
anything in particular to begin with. Just be spacious, and allow
thoughts  and emotions to settle. If you do so, then later,  when
you use a method such as watching the breath, your attention will
more easily be on your breathing. There is no particular point on
the  breath on which you need to focus, it is simply the  process
of  breathing.  Twenty-five percent of your attention is  on  the
breath,  and  seventy-five percent is relaxed.  Try  to  actually
identify  with the breathing, rather than just watching  it.  You
may choose an object, like a flower, for example, to focus  upon.
Sometimes you are taught to visualize a light on the forehead, or
in  the heart. Sometimes a sound or a mantra can be used. But  at
the  beginning  it is best to simply be spacious, like  the  sky.
Think of yourself as the sky, holding the whole universe.
When  you  sit, let things settle and allow all  your  discordant
self  with  its ungenuineness and unnaturalness to  disolve,  out
of  that  rises  your real being. You  experience  an  aspect  of
yourself which is more genuine and more authentic-the “real” you.
As  you  go deeper, you begin to discover and connect  with  your
fundamental goodness.
The  whole point of meditation is to get used to the that  aspect
which you have forgotten. In Tibetan “meditation” means  “getting
used to”. Getting used to what? to your true nature, your  Buddha
nature.  This  is  why,  in the  highest  teaching  of  Buddhism,
Dzogchen, you are told to “rest in the nature of mind”. You  just
quietly  sit  and let all thoughts and concepts dissolve.  It  is
like  when the clouds dissolve or the mist evaporates, to  reveal
the clear sky and the sun shining down. When everything dissolves
like  this, you begin to experience your true nature, to  “live”.
Then you know it, and at that moment, you feel really good. It is
unlike  any  other  feeling of well being  that  you  might  have
experienced.  This is a real and genuine goodness, in  which  you
feel  a  deep sense of peace, contentment  and  confidence  about
It is good to meditate when you feel inspired. Early mornings can
bring that inspiration, as the best moments of the mind are early
in  the  day,  when  the mind is calmer  and  fresher  (the  time
traditionaly recommended is before dawn). It is more  appropriate
to  sit when you are inspired, for not only is it easier then  as
you  are in a better frame of mind for meditation, but  you  will
also be more encouraged by the very practice that you do. THis in
turn will bring more confidence in the practice, and later on you
will  be able to practice when you are not inspired. There is  no
need  to meditate for a long time: just remain quietly until  you
are  a little open and able to connect with your  heart  essence.
That is the main point.
After that, some integration, or meditation in action. Once  your
mindfulness  has been awakened by your meditation, your  mind  is
calm  and your perception a little more coherent. Then,  whatever
you  do,  you  are present, right there. As  in  the  famous  Zen
master’s  saying:  “When I eat, I eat; when I  sleep,  I  sleep”.
Whatever  you do, you are fully present in the act. Even  washing
dishes,  if  it is done one-pointedly, can  be  very  energizing,
freeing, cleansing. You are more peaceful, so you are more “you”.
You assume the “Universal You”.
One  of  the fundamental points of the spiritual  journey  is  to
persevere along the path. Though one’s meditation may be good one
day  and  and  not so good the next,  like  changes  in  scenery,
essentially it is not the experiences, good or bad which count so
much, but rather that when you persevere, the real practice  rubs
off on you and comes through both good and bad. Good and bad  are
simply apparations, just as there may be good or bad weather, yet
the sky is always unchanging. If you persevere and have that  sky
like  attitude  of  spaciousness,  without  being  perturbed   by
emotions and experiences, you will develop stability and the real
profoundness  of meditation will take effect. You will find  that
gradually  and almost unnoticed, your attitude begins to  change.
You  do not hold on to things as solidly as before, or  grasp  at
them  so strongly, and though crisis will still happen,  you  can
handle them a bit better with more humor and ease. You will  even
be  able to laugh at difficulties a little, since there  is  more
space between you and them, and you are freer of yourself. Things
become  less  solid,  slightly ridiculous, and  you  become  more