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July 2016

July 11, 2016:  Peace Begins at Home

Early in the morning on Friday, July 8th, before I knew of the events of the last evening, AA Gabriel arrived at my front door, initiating what seemed like an unplanned Hosting the Archangels visit.  Within a couple of hours I knew why he was here… to provide loving reassurance, in a way that only he can, after another in a string of tragedies occurring last week.  He patiently waited for me to take in the news, see the disputes and shared stories on FB, feel the awkwardness in the air when out running errands and during the last errand, struggle with my response to a store clerk’s uneasy sounding greeting “How are you today”?  As I walked back to my car I knew that neither of us were fine; perhaps only trying to be, given the exchange.  It stayed with me for a long time that I hadn’t spoken what was really in my heart… the feeling of being at a loss for the “solution” to all the violence; what will end the violence; what will make things change?

Gabriel listened as I wrestled with the divided perspectives presented in the news and social media.  The weekend consisted of many conversations and thoughts passed between us.  His core message was always the same… “Peace begins at home”, and that process begins in “the ‘home’ within everyone’s heart”.  It involves “every person being courageous enough to take a personal inventory and explore our own feelings… asking ourselves ‘What am I not seeing?’… ‘What am I not understanding about (another person’s) perspective?’…

On Sunday morning I was visited by numerous dragonflies in the garden and a short time later, had the company of one for a good part of a walk through the neighborhood.  Knowing their symbolism has to do with change, I found this description:  The dragonfly, in almost every part of the world symbolizes change and change in the perspective of self-realization; and the kind of change that has its source in mental and emotional maturity and the understanding of the deeper meaning of life.  On Monday morning they were back; five of them reaching for my attention, along with my attempts to get a good photograph.  It was clearly time to write Gabriel’s message.   He asked that I include part of my recent article for Reiki practitioners, which follows:

Fear to Fearless?

Fear is defined by Merriam-Webster as - an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.  Recognizing that manifestation of fear seems rather easy, but do we always understand the reason for our fear or recognize that it’s often fear behind another emotion, choice, or course of action?

It took me quite a long time to truly sit down and write this article.  I’d write thoughts … expand on them a bit and then walk away for a while.  “A while” mind you, translated to days; even weeks at one point.   So … what was that about?  It took some soul searching to discover the underlying fear that I wouldn’t be able to do this topic justice.  If I put all the feelings that were uncovered in an equation, it would look something like this:

Exaggerated Expectations + Doubt in Ability = Perceived Failure

Sound familiar?  And it doesn’t stop there, does it?  No, because our mind becomes quite certain that failure equals fallout.  Fallout?  Of course, and who knows what that might be!  That “unknown” consequence becomes one more thing to fear.  As you can see, there is no end to this scenario.  Unless we recognize what’s happening we will continue to “walk away.”

Fear hides in the mind.  It hides behind control, behind anger, and yes, even procrastination.  Since there can be very valid reasons to hesitate taking an action, honor your gut feeling by exploring any obvious concerns first.  But if you do not identify any real concerns, it’s time to look deeper for the unfounded fear.  Some of the signs include:

  • You feel stuck; unable to make a decision.
  • You’ve made a decision you know is the right one, yet can’t move forward.
  • Your emotional reaction to a situation is "over the top."

If any of the signs resonate with you, consider exploring the source.  The best way to do that is to … sit with the feeling in meditation or in silence, letting the feeling speak to you.  If necessary, ask yourself what is this about?  Know that you are safe as you follow the feelings.  Be patient and always compassionate regarding the story that unfolds.

As you begin to understand where the resistance originates, it may simply fall away.  You will know if additional time is needed or if it is time to move forward in faith.

Developing the ability to discern appropriate caution from groundless fear is invaluable…   (end)

Reading through this part of the article, it’s understandable why Gabriel asked that it be included, as we don’t always know what is behind our reactions and/or response.  Thank you for your time and your consideration of the message.