Updated: Mar 11
Day 35/366 days Towards Self-Mastery Mood: relieved...
After wrangling with the question of the value of prayer for decades, I've come some way to figuring out what works and what doesn't. At least for me.
When the chips are down though, then that God that I was indoctrinated into emerges from the ethers and there I am again calling out for help!
More frustrating for me than you can imagine, however with a long, looooong family heritage of Catholicism there's little wonder that it's in my DNA.
And fortunately for me my inner knowing intervenes and points me in the direction of self-help, the next logical step!
Sarah speaks of turning on the "spiritual electricity" by asking through prayer.
Some people turn on the "spiritual electricity" by asking the universe.
Today is about turning on the spiritual electricity that lights your way
Self-mastery, being the best version of yourself, is about working with what you have. Not trying to be something you're not.
And "asking" is the key to activating your inner knowing.
So whomever, or whatever you ask, do it today. Don't wait for a special occasion; a job interview, a public presentation. Do it today for you, for everything you do.
Praying just when we're in need is not really how prayer was meant to be used in my opinion. I'm pretty sure that most any God didn't intend for us to beg and plead and call for their benevolent support when we feel overwhelmed. When we pray like this we miss the expansiveness that's possible with this concept of asking.
Prayer I think is about asking for insight on our journey through life. Those unanswered questions about the meaning of life and why we exist is a great place to start, but why stop there.
You can ask how to access more creativity with the project your working on. For insights into how to balance the books that don't seem to want to cooperate. For the memory of where you left something that appears lost.
My father made a point of acting on the inspiration that he received whilst driving his tractor up and down in the fields and had more success than those of us who were praying.
In the early days for me, it was about understanding the human condition. I learned to ask for inspiration and insight into a better understanding of the physics of life. My curiosity about how life works is insatiable.
Asking, I discovered, was a great way to seek guidance to live my best life. To overcome disharmony by understanding how my family and social conditioning holds me in repeating patterns and behaviours.
The value of asking is that it activates the process of getting into the flow of life. My asking never stops. Until recently my most common question was, "what's next?" Now I'm replacing that question with, "what else is possible?"
The dilemma of whom it was exactly, that I was asking, troubled me for some time, until I realised that it is me that I am asking.
Asking, going inwards, seeking truth from my inner self, my inner being, is about connecting with myself deeply, under all the masks and conditioned behaviours.
Some people call this their higher self. For me, it's my inner self. Higher of lower, I'm having a human experience and I'm not sure what those sentiments mean. I do however understand that inner guidance that never lets me down. Call it intuition, gut feeling, inner knowing, whatever. You access it by asking, and then you listen. It's that simple, yet we make it so difficult.
If you're not asking you're relying too much on cognition. That's slow, plodding, immensely frustrating and a huge waste of your potential. You won't figure all this stuff out in your lifetime with cognition. The mind is meant to be a tool. Use it that way and give it a rest.
Ask and it shall be given... (Matthew 7:7-8 King James Version (KJV). That's it.
The interpretations are many and varied and I'm not going to argue with them. My purpose here is to share my discoveries. Maybe a God has my back. I'm agnostic. I don't know anything other than I know what works for me.
Ask and the answer, the inspiration will surface for you. It's not a cognitive process. Ask.
Then wait. Distract yourself and the answer will emerge. The more you do this the easier it gets. Ask.
366 days Towards Self-Mastery
When I considered my New Year's intentions for 2020 I had just one: To allow my heart to love what it loved...and let it lead me. (If not now, then when?)
I've spent months working on integrating my life. To live life more fully with my home life, my interests, my work, my responsibilities, all coming together, all connected. I want to give each the attention that they desire and need, and still have time and energy for the others. That means living and working from the heart.
As I was clearing out my bookshelf over the Christmas break I discovered Simple Abundance. I set it aside to explore it on New Year's Day as I lazed through another delicious day of nothingness. Sarah, the author, says this book is about living in grace. Living in grace I realised, is about Self-Mastery.
My thirst for understanding the human condition has driven me all my life, and hand-in-hand with self-mastery it has been a life-long goal. And seeing as I love to write, that living in grace is about self-mastery, and I love a bit of a challenge, then if I am truly going to let my heart lead, I really don't have any other choice. So scary as it feels, I'm starting out on a daily mission of leaning into the suggestions of this daybook and making a daily post to keep me accountable. If not now, then when?
I'm Josie. You can find out a little more about me here.
Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy: by Sarah Ban Breathnach.
This book is written for the Australian and NZ market because it refers to seasonal changes. It's available on Amazon here if you'd like to follow along.