One of the best teachers I know has to be the noble force of the cold. Out of all the modalities that exist to connect us to who we truly are, to me the cold may just be the most powerful. •While its a physical and mental challenge, it forces you to be completely present. The connection to your breath and the now moment blend together to erase any sense of stress, sadness, anxiety, confusion, or even time. What’s left is a simple being-ness, where all life’s questions are answered. •There’s no bullshit when your in the ice water. The worries of the day disappear and your left to feel the power of the present moment.. as is the goal of meditation. The strength gained and lessons learned in the cold carry over to every day life, gifting a huge list of benefits including increased energy, immunity to sickness, better blood flow, overcoming fears, a deep sense of inner peace, a strong sense of empowerment and great enthusiasm for life. •I’m sharing this message because this practice has brought me so much benefit, and I believe it can do the same for others. From this perspective, the cold is a tool to help us humans evolve to higher states of consciousness with greater happiness, awareness, strength and compassion for everyone. Let the cold be a friend this winter ❄️
One of the most profound experiences in life that one can have is to fully realize the infinite interconnectedness of everything ~
This experience goes much deeper than the words on this page. As a synthesis of the left and the right brain, the mind, body, spirit, and heart, come together effortlessly for the benefit of all of life. To experience the wholeness of existence through mind and spirit is to see the world as a single gigantic organism with its own collective mind. Everything connects to everything else, boundaries break down, and many ecological alignments become perceivable. From here, the universe is not a merely a collection of inanimate parts but rather, is alive, intelligent, and a product of your own creation.
A higher consciousness is not to be judged as better than any other state of being, it simply is an operation of human awareness on a different wavelength. It is more closely aligned with love, peace, joy, and gratitude, and can see a bigger picture.
While effortlessly flowing with nature in grace and simplicity, a higher consciousness values spiritual purification, awakening, transcendence, liberation, unconditional love, compassion for all, emotional mastery, presence, mindfulness, gratitude, unity, deeper and deeper levels on interconnectedness, selfless living, and humility.
When awakening to a higher state of awareness, the metaphysical background of reality that lies beyond the mind, begins to shine. One begins to fully recognize “Maya” or the illusion that has been painted onto our reality. From here, one can see past the illusion and is able to transcend all concepts, philosophies, biases or beliefs. Embodying this truth results in a radiance of love, and a manifestation of the self for the benefit of existential reality, life, and the entire planet.
One also begins to clearly see that all of what mankind is really searching for is a higher consciousness. At the core of our being, we are all searching for love, which is achieved unconditionally with a progressive evolution of our awareness. As a result of this understanding, one becomes interested in cooperative action for elevating the consciousness of mankind while helping to awaken humanity and assist in remembering the magnificence of our existence. This is a process of integration that leads to wholeness and synthesis that lies beyond analysis, and gives rise to an importance of being, as opposed to knowing, doing and having.
We may then come to realize, in truth, that we are not just a coincidental being that happened to appear billions of years after the big bang. But we are in fact, the heart of it all.
Concepts in this article were interpreted from my personal research on Spiral Dynamics. Credit to: Clara Graves, Don Beck, Christopher Cowan for this amazing work.
One sunny Sunday morning, in the quaint town of Surry, Maine, I had stumbled upon an opportunity to experience the art of Zen. On this fine morning, I was to follow a kind yet modest lady named Nancy on a gentle walk through the old growth forest to find the location in which we would practice a quiet meditation. The morning sun felt as warm as her heart, and after a brief introduction, I knew that we shared the common goal of finding an ever-deeper connection with ourselves, and with the universe.
Through the dense tree cover, the meandering trail eventually guided us to a carefully crafted building made with the very timber that surrounded us. While birds sang, frogs peeped, and leaves rustled in the wind, we entered the meditation room with a bow and proceeded to take our seats. By way of experience, today was about discovering what it means to “be Zen.”
Inside we sat, along with several others to participate in one hour of silent meditation. It was during this time where our spiritual connections expanded in depth, and intuitive insights became illuminated.
Perhaps the most profound insight to come to me was a deepened understanding of the nature of time itself. As an object of the mind, its essence is relative. It became clear to me that the “time” we abide by with the passing of each day is merely a mental construct that we project onto our reality. By shifting awareness to my heart center, linear time as it is commonly known and experienced began to dissolve and I found myself immersed in what felt like “the eternal now.” In this space, there was no thinking, no rationalizations, no concepts. Simply a being-ness, in which to rest. With no effort, my breath flowed in its natural rhythm, and an easy feeling of contentment was abundant.
As a seeker of spiritual connection, I’ve explored countless disciplines that aim to balance the mind, body, and spirit. Whether it be yoga, Tai Chi, sensory deprivation tanks, or binaural beat meditations, every modality certainly contains its own elements that are valuable. One fundamental goal of Zen is to embody that which is discovered in the journey of meditation. From rigorous self control, practice of meditation, and personal exploration the embodyment of Buddha teachings results in an expansion of the compassionate nature of the self, for the benefit of others. Zen is one path of many that lead to the same ultimate destination, and it is here, now, in this moment. To me, the experience of Zen on this day showed itself to be a valuable tool in the toolbox used to build the metaphorical house of enlightenment.
Thanks for reading!
Folow on Instagram
Find me on YouTube