Spiritual Baby Steps

"Doing" spirituality in the real world

Archive for the month “December, 2012”

Facebook

I had a really interesting conversation with some colleagues today about the value of Facebook (aka FB). Most of my colleagues are connected to FB and some… although considerably less… have opted to tweet as well. However, there was one hold-out who was unconvinced of the value to be gained by joining the FB community. Well, obviously there’s value… right? I mean, everyone I know is on FB… my husband, my parents, my friends… even my 80+ year old Grandma! Surely there’s a reason we are all connecting, often daily, to find out what’s happening with our 300 nearest and dearest friends.

I had to think for a moment. What is up with spending precious, irrevocable minutes of my day reading posts of general acquaintances or friends of friends… people I may not even know? What are we getting from this level of engagement? Is this just another instance of too much in a world of information overload?  How am I a better person by keeping tabs on high school friends who I wouldn’t necessarily get together with even if I did have 5 spare minutes in my crazy busy life? Are we so lacking in personal connections and real relationships that we have to turn to electronic devices and social media to fill the void?

Or perhaps… just maybe… there is more to this social media trend than meets the eye. I know for myself, my family and personal friendships are of the utmost importance to me. I definitely don’t feel like FB has replaced the efforts that go into making these relationships work. I can still appreciate the value of getting together for lunch, writing a letter or picking up the phone. However, there are increasingly more instances where people who I care about are in a different state in their lives, either literally and/or figuratively, and perhaps this is a way to maintain a peripheral level of connection that would otherwise not happen.

I’m curious what the increased connectivity, global awareness and influence of technology will do as we move forward – for my generation, but even more so for my kids’. What are the implications of being “friends” with your entire class… your entire school… your entire community? What about being friends with the global community? Is there a limit to how many connections one person can maintain with any semblance of authenticity? What expectations go along with this higher level of peripheral connection and how will we manage the potentially greater responsibilities that ensue? Or maybe this is just a phenomenon of a transitional generation… perhaps the “rules” will be better known by the time my kids decide on whether or not to “friend” the world!

So, as of now, I’m staying connected. As usual, I have far more questions than answers on this life journey. If you’re a member of FB, what keeps you coming back? If not, what keeps you away? What impact do you think the growing global community will have in your lifetime… and what about the next?  I’d love to hear your thoughts…

Love and laughter to you.  ~Rashel

Inside Out Job

I’ve been listening to derek rydall talk about giving away what you want. In his course, Emergineering, he explains that everything in our lives happens through us… not to us, as we’ve been taught to believe. It’s an interesting concept. I’m a big fan of Debbie Ford, whose focus is on shadow work. One of the main premises of shadow work is that we hold within us every emotion, every characteristic, everything. It’s a little wild… and it’s definitely different from everything we’re normally taught. This idea that Derek talks about is that happiness… or anything else you want in your life… is an inside job. In order to have more of something in your life… instead of going out and getting it… or relying on some external source to give it to you… you must go inside yourself and cultivate it from within.

Derek offers an exercise that was helpful to me. Imagine yourself having just won the lottery. You close your eyes and really feel into the state of financial abundance. You have millions of dollars at your disposal and millions in the bank.  If you really get into the exercise, you can have fun imagining all that you’ll buy, how your life will change, how safe and secure it feels to be in this state of abundance.  Once you open your eyes, the “reality” is that you did not win the lottery and you do not have millions at your disposal or in the bank. But you created, just through your mind, the experience of abundance – without actually having it. The feeling of abundance is within us… it is not dependent on anything outside of ourselves in order to feel it, nor is it guaranteed to be present because of any specific external cue. Look at the plethora of professional athletes who make millions and are broke and do not feel safe or secure.
We are taught that in order to feel differently, we must go out in the world and get stuff, learn stuff, meet the right people and get the right breaks. The reality that we are not taught, however, is that our internal state is what dictates our external circumstances. If you are experiencing lack in your life, you – on some level- are holding a mentality of lack. Now at first you might resist this statement, but how many of you have complained about not having enough money in the past week? If you’re like most people, then thinking, feeling or commenting on not having enough is a regular occurrence in your daily life. In fact, it’s amazing that I have any money at all considering how common and easy it is to complain about what I don’t have, what’s not working, etc.

Here’s an activity for you… Take one area of your life where you feel lack. Whether it’s money, respect, love… whatever stands out to you as something you really want and feel like you don’t have. For the next week, notice all the ways that you embody that lack. When you notice it, make an active attempt to shift your internal state. How can you be more loving and emanate love to yourself and others? How can you be more respectful? How can you be more giving (of money, time or resources) so that you emanate a state of wealth and abundance? I know for myself this feels like a major challenge. To consider that everything I have and how I feel every minute of every day is all a direct mirror of my internal state is… well… overwhelming and challenging for me to grasp and accept. Yet, at the same time, there is a part of me that resonates when I hear this concept and really believes this is true. No judgment. Simply notice and se if you are able to shift your internal state on a regular basis toward more of what you want rather than what you don’t want.

Consciousness always clothes itself in form. ~Derek Rydall

Enjoy your week and let me know how it goes! Love and laughter!  ~Rashel

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