When Is It Time To Make A Change?

When Is It Time To Make A Change?

by Christy Diane Farr

 

Several years ago, I ended a very rocky off again/on again relationship. I  quit eating meat. A couple of years later, my daughter decided she didn’t want  to eat meat anymore either. My wife, who never ate much meat anyway, followed  suit too.

My charming son, who previously preferred potatoes and pasta to animal  protein, no questions asked, has now declared himself the resident carnivore –  the proud and mighty meat eating man of the house. I suspect the renewed  commitment to meat consumption reflects his quest to define himself, the lone  male, in a household with three girl people, three girl cats, and one neutered  boy cat, who he tells me “does not count for the boy team, because we had him  fixed”. So, testosterone driven or not, we support him in his life as a  meat eater, and he supports us in ours.

Several months ago, I gave up crack, I mean sugar… again. After more than two  years without the poison, I’d “relapsed” and felt sincerely mortified to find  myself deep in the throes of a toxic relationship with it once again. That is  always a good sign that you should stop eating something, when you realize that  you not only have a “relationship” with a food, but that you describe it as  toxic. Never a good sign, but if there is uncertainty, look for other  signs you need to give it up. For example, how often have you had a hysterical  fit of crying and screaming because someone used the last of the milk, without  warning you or replacing it, leaving you with a dry bowl of Fruity Pebbles? If  the answer is more than zero, you might want to give it some thought…

While I have no energy for the debate about whether one can be “addicted” to  sugar or not, my relatively recently established policy prohibiting “toxic  relationships” forced me to put down the spoon and walk away from sugar for  good. Yes, I miss cake but there really isn’t anything that tastes better than  sanity feels. I’ve resisted forcing my dietary choices on my family and friends,  perhaps excessively so, and the living by example thing works slower than I ever  imagined. It’s just me, living sugar-free, and while it is a difficult choice at  times, I live with certainty that it is best for me (and everyone who encounters  me).

Do you know the feeling that comes to let you know it is time to make a  change? It is a message that bubbles up from deep within, or sometimes the  universal brick to the forehead,  that the time to act is now. Sometimes they  are strong enough that by simply receiving it, we feel the strength and  certainty to move into alignment with it. These are powerful moments and I’ve  found that by taking action when the time is right, I have what it takes to  actually do it.

Well, not long after I released sugar,  I heard that the time had  come to make two other big dietary adjustments – releasing dairy and gluten.  I’ve done these two before, just long enough to know that my body wasn’t  responding well to them. I knew it would come eventually, but when word came  that it was time, I freaked out.

Immediately, the voice in my head started explaining how hard it is to give  up wheat, to give up dairy, to give them up in addition to sugar, to give them  up when I don’t eat meat. It told me that this was absolutely unreasonable. It  told me how this would be better to do later.

The good news is that I am impressively tenacious.

(“Tenacious” is the post-therapy translation of childhood labels like  bull-headed, stubborn, cantankerous, unmanageable, and just plain bitchy.)

I won’t listen to anyone, even  the little voices in my head, when I can  discern they are coming from a place of fear. Part of me felt afraid that these  changes would be too hard. Part of me certainly — and perhaps even reasonably —  felt afraid that I wouldn’t know what to eat or how to prepare my food. I was  afraid because I sincerely wanted to make these changes and that meant it  would  hurt so badly if I failed.

But all of that is about fear and we already know that nothing of value ever  comes from fear.

So, here’s the deal: I am a catalyst. I write and teach because these are the  gifts I possess to help me blow up obstacles to personal freedom — both in my  life and in yours — because that’s what I believe I was created to do. With that  in mind, what  I’m trying to tell you is this: Once you hear the whispers (or  feel bricks) about making changes in your life, the time to take action is now.  Period.

When you feel the energy surge, that’s your sign, jump on and ride it all the  way. Do whatever it takes to cultivate the health, sanity, creativity,  abundance, love, or whatever else you need and desire. That’s how this works.  And when you commit, the universe will rush in to support you. You’ll receive  the your life equivalent of friends who are masterful vegan cooks to  teach you how prepare what you eat now, Kundalini Yoga classes to help you heal,  and too-tight favorite blue jeans to remind you why you care about making this  change.

While I could write, at remarkable length, about the merits of sugar-free  food, being a vegetarian or vegan, food sensitivities, respecting an 11 year-old  boy’s need to carve a space for himself in the world by eating meat, and the  healing power of self-love, that is not what I want you to hear in this story  about what’s changing in my world.

Instead, I’m writing to ask you — plain and simple — to listen when your  intuition speaks to you. Regardless of what healing journey writers like me are  sharing with you, or what your partner/boss/mother/society believes you “should”  be, I’m asking you to find your own answers. What does your body need you to do?  What does your soul long for? What are the personal and professional dreams  waiting for your attention?

Listen to the beautiful voice inside your heart; the tender one who whispers  about your strength and your power; the one who knows, intimately, all the best  parts of you and who remembers the reason for your life on this earth. When that  voice says it is time, listen… act. Your life is waiting for you.

 

Indian Paganism

Indian Paganism
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Author: Kalaratri

A long time ago, what we call Aryans came from northern Europe to India to bring their faith all along their way. This happened maybe 1500 or 2000 years before our era, and changed the face of India forever.

I write this essay because I felt that a lot of Pagans are aware of eastern spirituality, know something about chakras or yoga, but do not go further. I will try to clarify the knowledge we have as westerners about real Hinduism, Yoga or Sanatan Dharma (the eternal religion) as they call it themselves. I am not a specialist about the subject, never been to India and if there is errors in the text just tell me I will be happy to correct them.

First of all, the world religion comes from Latin religare, and that means to link. The word Yoga means the same.

The fact that white skin people colonized India is important to make the connection between the two civilizations at this time. Actual historians claim that our ancestors were just a draft of civilization.

I am furious about this; my personal history studies confirmed me that intelligent and spiritual people were dwelling on earth more than 300 000 years ago (time of the first known grave).

So the known history of India begins there; the writing of the laws of Manu, an old moral and spiritual code from the colonization time, that sadhus (initiates) hold in high regard, just precipitate the unification of India under the same religious fever. But before the invasion, what were the religious practices in India?

The coming of Aryans defined the four casts, the highest being the Brahmans or priests. They had power over the Indian people for these 4000 years; the same way Christians had power over us in the West. Gandhi was a great man because he tried to destroy this system that kept women and untouchables outside society. A lot of people tried to do this before him, but he did and this was one of his great works.

The Vedas are a corpus of religious texts. We count four Vedas written during a dozen of centuries, and a plethora of treatises are linked to them. They would cover an entire library on their own. The Rig-Veda is the oldest one and the most “tantric” of them (1500 before our era); it mentions the use of Soma, or ecstatic beverage.

Tantrism is the oldest tradition that survives the patriarchal domination of the Aryan invasion. I will not cover the history or the differences between the sects of tantrism. To define Tantrism is almost to kill it. It is the way yogis and yoginis lived their spirituality outside the boundaries of accepted dogma.

They were often nude, doing strange rituals at night, in the forests or in the cremation grounds, or worshipped deities in ways not accepted by the Brahmans. For them, sex, as alcohol, drugs, meat or fish, were sacred because it was the body of the Goddess.

This created hate from the Brahmans community, who lived with a lot of restrictions. Tantrikas had to hide themselves in forests or lost temples; they lived the same persecution as the Inquisition.

Their Goddess has more than a thousand names. The most common are Devi (Goddess), Durga (She who is hard to attain), most revered in Bengal, Kali (Black Time, the destroyer), Lakshmi (the radiant) and many others that I will not list there.

The legend tells that Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva are at Her feet; She is all the manifest world, matter and space. Kali is a powerful goddess. Shiva is Her consort; He lies under Her feet, maybe because without Her, He is a cadaver (shava).

The current image of Kali was drawn from a vision of a sixteen-century saint, who saw a girl bathing in a river. She was nude, and when she saw the intruder she lift her tongue and in a moment, he saw the goddess in her. He thought this would be a powerful goddess image.

She has eight or ten arms, dark blue skin and a necklace of skulls (meaning the fifteen syllabs of Sanskrit). She has three eyes, one white, one black and a red one. She always takes care of Her devotees and often goes straight to them, like myself. The Goddess as Kali came into my life when I did not have any interest about Indian culture.

Not all tantrikas are Kali devotees. But they always see Shakti the goddess as Manifest Universe (what they call the Tattwas, or Elements) and Shiva as the Pure Non-manifest God. They have a corpus of practices very effective like Ishnaan, or cold showers, Kundalini Yoga, or awakening of the shakti/goddess energy, or specific mantras that will awaken the energy into the body.

The goal is to destroy the boundaries between the matter and the spiritual, the self and the non-self, the divine and the mundane. Because for a Tantrika, everything is sacred and the ultimate divinity manifested

They worship in different ways; the most common is Puja. The Puja is like a ritual to celebrate the deity. There is thirty millions gods in India. All spiritual devotees have a specific deity, whom they choose and dedicate in their life; this is called Ishtadevata.

I see it as Pagans often have a favorite deity that has a deeper meaning for them; they choose to worship it more often or dedicate their life to, like Hekate, Zeus, Morrigan, Odin or Isis. They recognize other deities as the ultimate divinity with another form, as we see the God and the Goddess for others Pagans.

So Tantrism is still alive and maybe more than ever, because the Goddess still want Her devotees to know her, with all their desires, needs, and dreams. Some Indian Gurus and Initiates came to the West to teach what they knew here, because of the New Era. They say that in this Era, not only the Truth and the teachings will be open to everyone, but they will be shouted from the roofs, and nobody would hear them (excerpt from Kundalini Yoga, Michel Manor) I can not get tantra teachings were I live, so I hope you will try to get some if you can, and I really hope you will open your mind reading this essay and find your Way in this life.

If you want to know more about Tantrism, you may search about any of the Indian goddesses, Ramprasad, Ma Ananda Moyi, Shree Ma Sarada Devi and Ramakrishna, Shree Rajneesh, Dadaji, Devi, Durga, Kali, or Shiva, or Kundalini Yoga.