There but for the Grace of God

John Bradford is attributed with the phrase:
There but for the Grace of God, go I.

 

Image from:
Pixabay

I’m reminded of this phrase this past week because I read in our local paper about a young man who recently passed from a drug overdose.  I know people hide behind drugs and alcohol to mask their emotional pain.  

 

We all have emotional pain.
We all go through turmoil.
We all think we have it worse than anyone else.

 

The fact is we don’t have it worse.  There is always someone worse off.  You only have to look around the next corner.  How do we cope with that adversity?  What happens when we slip into the pattern of masking our pain with drugs and alcohol?  That can lead us into further challenges; addiction being one of the many issues that stem from drug and alcohol use.

 

Can we recover from addiction?
Can we not even fall into that hole?

 

That’s where faith comes in and it is why twelve step programs all have a faith contingent to them.  Grace and faith are intermingled in all aspects of life.  Unless you can turn to faith when you are in turmoil, the likelihood of sinking further is greater.  Masking pain is just that.  You’re only hiding the turmoil.  Not resolving it.  You need to look into why you are having the swirling stress in your life.  It’s only then that you can move forward.  It’s only when you can admit you have a problem that you can move forward. Faith alone will not help you move forward.  I understand that.  It can however be an important aspect to getting better.  

 

You can’t deny the fact that people see faith as an important part of their lives.
You can’t deny there are mysterious actions that appear around the world:
Weeping angels are one example of this mysterious spiritual action.  There are so many more I can discuss.  I’m simply pointing out that some see faith as a real aspect of their lives and we cannot deny that these things happen.

 

We can’t intellectualize this away as some in science do To do so, delegitimizes those who have seen the mysterious.  Those who have seen things that cannot be explained need to be validated.  Emotional distress is a real issue people deal with and discounting someone’s belief surely doesn’t help. Using meds, whether it be alcohol or other drugs doesn’t help in the long term either.

 

In the short term it is one way of dealing with those said issues.  In the end masking your pain with meds never ends well or as an ad for CNN’s comedy series says:
In the end drugs and alcohol beat art.  

 

Whenever I read about someone struggling with emotional challenges and acting out, regardless of how I always think:
God, that could very well have been me.

 

Which is one reason why I believe I have such empathy for people who have no other support system.  I could very well have traveled the “poor me” path.  I chose another way.  I chose faith to help me overcome my own adversity.  I still choose faith.  So much has happened in my life, yet I didn’t fall down.  Not that choosing to mask your pain is falling down.  Sometimes it’s a gradual slide and you don’t know you’re in trouble until it’s too late.

 

That’s where turning your life over to a higher power comes in. For without that spiritual strength, without that guidance it is that much harder to come through the other side.

 

Faith has helped me overcome so much adversity that I simply cannot believe there isn’t some benevolent being, be it God, be it the Universe, be it a higher power whatever you choose to call it guiding us through the challenges that arise in each of our lives. I’ve seen it help me. I’ve experienced this very thing at moments in my own life. I’ve written about one such example at Wisdom and Life with the column called:
Been there and done that

 

We cannot dismiss someone’s belief in the supernatural simply because we don’t share the same conviction. Some in the scientific field have done just that attempting to intellectualize that faith away. This is something that cannot be intellectualized.  Faith is, well a matter of trust.  I like that there are scientists who are bucking the system.  I’ve written about Carl Sagan at Wisdom and Life previously and especially in the column Carl Sagan’s Contact.  If you haven’t seen the movie or read the book, I highly recommend seeing the movie.  Mr Sagan is the first scientist I came across that melded science and spirituality.

 

Seeing the word:
Grace reminds me of the song:
Amazing Grace

 

I began today’s column discussing the word grace. I’d like to end the column on the same topic. For me, grace is another important word in my lexicon.  Grace is as important as faith. As I said above, these two words co-mingle.

 

Grace means being blessed. Knowing that we all have the opportunity to find peace and understanding that no one is beyond redemption. You only have to be willing to admit your challenges and seek forgiveness.

 

Grace is available to everyone. Are you willing to find it within yourself?

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.

 

Prayers, Intuition and God

If prayer is you talking to God, then intuition is God talking back.

 

Memories of Heaven
Wayne Dyer
Page 140

 

As anyone who has been reading Wisdom and Life for any length of time realizes,

I don’t believe death exists.
I believe it is simply a change in address.

 

Reading Memories of Heaven only enhances that belief.  The above quote from that book resonates deeply with me as I also have a strong faith in God.  The Divine is sending messages all the time to everyone.  We just have to tune in to the right channel.  

 

Prayer is a one way conversation if you don’t listen for a response.

Image from:
Pixabay

Prayer is like a muscle, if you don’t use it regularly and look for and listen for a response, you won’t know when that response arrives.  Your intuition, as the above quote from Wayne Dyer suggests, is that response.

 

God always responds.  You just have to learn how to listen.  If you’re tuned in to the right channel, you’ll hear the answers.  If you’ve never listened to your intuition, it’s time to start.  How do you know when your intuition is speaking to you?

Does a thought suddenly pop into your head?
Have you awakened from a dream that seems to have the answer?
You know that saying:
“A Gut Feeling”

 

When you get that gut feeling, that’s your intuition, that’s God opening the door.  It’s best to walk through that door because that’s the answer you’ve been looking for.

 

I know people who have ignored that feeling and eventually the decision was made for them.  You don’t want that.  Get ahead of of the choice.  Start listening.  Start praying.  And pay attention to your intuition.

 

Lastly, heed the advice that comes to you!

 

The Divine, God and Intuition can be one in the same.  For someone who isn’t spiritual, for someone who doesn’t believe, your intuition can take the place of the divine.  We have to learn to listen for it and when your inner voice speaks, it’s important to heed that advice.  That’s how to increase your ability to hear it.

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.

 

The Power of the Number Three

My divine pipeline is completely unclogged.  As anyone who has been reading Wisdom and Life for awhile now realizes I believe I’m simply a conduit, that while I’m physically typing out the the words on my computer screen, the message, the concepts, the ideas for my columns are given to me from the Divine.  This happened again last week as put my laundry away.  

 

Image from:
Pixabay

The power of the number three floated through my consciousness as finished hanging my shirts in my closet.  Maybe it is because Easter Weekend has just passed and the phrase:
On the third day he rose flitted through.  Have you ever stopped to consider how often you see the number three appear:
Area Codes.
The first digits of a Social Security Number.
The first digits of a phone number.
Events happen in “threes.”

It is also the last number written in as many lines:
III

 

In many religious practices, the number three is significant:

 

Christian Thought:
The Divine Trinity
On the third day.
Jesus was tempted three times

 

Jewish Thought:
Jonah spent three days in the whale.
Noah had three sons

Three Patriarchs:
Jacob
Abraham
Isaac

 

There are so many other examples where the number three is representative.  Where do you think the power of that number originated?
Was it a religious thought?
Was it Pagan?

Or a combination of both?

 

Because you are aware that many pagan beliefs were melded into Christianity?  And then we have the number thirteen, a derivative of three.  While the number three is seen as a positive in religious thought, the opposite is true for thirteen.  The most influential use of the number thirteen is:
Friday the Thirteenth

 

Did you know one of the originations of Friday the Thirteenth may have been related to the day that The Knights Templar demise and the death of many from that organization?

 

Regardless, the number three holds sway over the entire world whether it is that exact number or the derivative thirteen.

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.

An arrow can only be shot

An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backward. So when life is dragging you back with difficulties, it means that it’s going to launch you into something great. So just focus, and keep aiming.

 

Is your life full of challenges at the moment?  Do things seem to be piling up with no end in sight?

 

Image from:
Pixabay

I understand that it’s challenging to hear someone tell you if you’re having a difficult time to find the gift, that strength comes in the face of adversity, that as the quote above states:
An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backward.

 

It is true, however.  If you feel as if you’re being dragged down, being held back, it’s a sign that you’re about to leap forward.  Don’t become discouraged.  Don’t let a challenging circumstance or event bring you to your knees for too long.  I’ve seen this happen to myself.

 

In the early 1990s I had just finished up a five year job with the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection.  I’d been out of work for a few months and I began to feel restless.  I started to sink a bit.  Backward a bit.  It was around this time that I decided to go back to school. And once that plan was put to fruition, I was hired part time at the Scranton Library in Madison, Connecticut.

 

So what I’m saying is, that even though life may be bringing you down at the moment, may be pulling you back, get ready to leap forward.  The ONE THING I can say however, is don’t expect something to happen if you don’t lay the groundwork.  You can’t move forward without a path to move forward on.  One foot in front of the other and one leap forward.

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.  

A Divine Chip

In a recent Power Group meeting, we ended up discussing parents and their children as high school was coming to a close.  One of the things we discussed was those high school students who SAID they didn’t know what they wanted to do.  I countered that MOST students do know what they want but are afraid to say.

 

 

 

 

Soul image from:
Pixabay
Chip from
Wikimedia

 

Those who knew and DID express their opinions I believe sometimes had a “divine chip” implanted in them as they incarnated.  This chip overrode any dissenting opinion either from family or school.  These people bucked the system do do what they were put here to do.

 

My best friend growing up in Lisbon, Connecticut is one such person.  I recall being in third grade with him at Lisbon Central School and hearing him repeatedly say he would be a doctor.

Joe is now a foot doctor in Norwich, Connecticut.  I learned a valuable lesson from Joe:
Never let someone tell you what’s best for you, because only YOU know what’s best for you.

 

Some of us can’t afford to pursue of career choice immediately.  That simply means we must find another way to supplement or abundance while we continue to work on our specific goals.  For some of us, we can simply pivot a bit.  I’ll use myself and another friend as an example:

For me, my goal has always been the written word.  

 

Writing as can be seen from the previous link, has always been my first love.  It takes a long time to build a career in writing.  I acknowledge that.  I didn’t let that deter me however and I also didn’t travel a completely different path.  I’m still involved with the written word, having pivoted to a library, where I am surrounded by books.  Books have always been a major influence on me.  I didn’t want to be separated from them.  I thank my own “divine chip” for keeping me on the right path.  No one influenced me to make a decision that they THOUGHT was right for me.  That “divine chip” implanted in myself is still working.  And I thank God for placing it there.

 

My friend, Jason Marchi who I’ve mentioned here at Wisdom and Life as can be seen from the previous link is someone else who I believe has that aforementioned “divine chip.”  Like me, he has been a writer as long as I’ve known him.  In fact it is how we met.  And like me, he pivoted just a bit in his day job, having worked for a publishing company in his hometown.  We both stayed in the “writing field” so as to keep our enthusiasm up.  We didn’t let other people define the roles we wanted and now we are reaping the rewards.

 

I believe we all have that divine chip.  However for some of us it is more defined and we are not afraid to express what we want.  We don’t want to wake up one morning saying:
Shoulda.  Woulda.  Coulda.

 

Thanks to Patricia for the inspirational term:
Divine Chip

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.

 

A Visit During Centering Prayer

Last Wednesday, March 8 while at Centering Prayer at The Mercy Center, I had two unexpected visitors to the sacred place I go when I meditate.  My paternal grandmother (Nana) who passed in 1973 and my Aunt Bet.  I’ve believed for awhile now that Aunt Bet took over for Nana when she passed. I also believe this was planned before I incarnated.  For those new to Wisdom and Life, I am a firm believer that some aspects of our lives are mapped out for us before we become human, in other words, predestination.

 

Image from:
CJP Photos

 

I kind of think seeing them both together in my meditation is a confirmation of that.  As I sat at the point at Blissville Pond in Lisbon, Connecticut, (The sacred place I go when I meditate) my Nana silently walked over to me and sat down beside me on my right.  She never uttered a word.  She simply sat beside me.  I felt her presence and glanced at her a few times and felt loved and secure.

 

Aunt Bet came next and sat down on my left.  Both just smiled and stayed with me for a few more moments, never speaking a word.  Then they got up and walked away.  Seeing them together makes it difficult for my spiritual mind to not consider the connection.  I’m more convinced now as I write this column that there definitely was a succession.  That one followed the other.  Especially since Nana came before Aunt Bet.

 

I felt blessed that these two important people in my life at one point came to me and stayed with me for a short while.

 

I know some of you may be thinking:
Uh oh, Chris is going off The Deep End again.  And that’s alright.  I believe what I believe.  We all make up our own reality.  And my spiritual reality tells me this is what I saw and what I believe.  I felt loved, comforted and blessed that these two important women visited me tonight.

 

Has anyone else ever experienced anything like this?

 

As an addendum:
Sometime Wednesday night while I slept, my Nana and Aunt Bet returned in a dream.  As with Centering Prayer, they did not speak, but just seeing them together again reaffirmed my impression that there is definitely a bridge between them.

 

If you want to learn more about Centering Prayer at Mercy Center, simply click the preceding link.

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.

Talismans

Everyone has their own talisman; something they carry with them that offers their own form of protection.  Whatever it maybe, no one can deny having one.   Mine is a Saint Christopher Medal. I’ve had one most of my life.

The first medal I owned I placed in my maternal grandfather’s casket after he transitioned to provide him safe travel to the next plane.  Saint Christopher is the patron saint of travelers.  He provides safety for all who travel anywhere.  I wanted to provide my grandfather’s soul safe passage and I understood that I could replace my medal.  However this was the only opportunity I had to give my talisman to my grandfather.

I like to think that I’m not superstitious, however I can tell you, those first few weeks when I didn’t have Saint Christopher around my neck I was quite uncomfortable.

I was more than happy to give mine up because as I said above I understood that my grandfather needed the protection more than I did.  It was still odd not to feel the medal against my chest when I went to touch it.

I’ve gone through two other Saint Christopher’s.  One I left in New York and was never able to recover and one slipped off my chain and I didn’t realize it was missing until I went to bed that night. Now you’re probably thinking:
If he went through the day without any knowledge that the medal was gone, then surely the fact that he THINKS he needs it for protection is in his head.

You’d be right to think that.  In fact, I completely agree with you.  The fact is, the knowledge that I need this talisman, the knowledge that ANYONE needs a talisman is entirely in our heads.  Just because we believe we need something to keep us safe however, creates the reality that we need something to keep us safe.  You our of course aware of my worldview that states:
Our thoughts create our reality.
It is this very reason why believing something makes it real in our world.

Last week, while shaving, I heard a clink and looked down to see my current ST. Christopher Medal lying in the sink. The medal had fallen off my chain.  I once again felt vulnerable. I know.  That sounds crazy, right?  I can’t help it.  ST. Christopher has protected me for almost my entire life.  Without that medal hanging around my neck, I did not feel safe.  Once out of the bathroom I went to my bedroom and in my night table I found a second medal, I attached that to the chain as best I could and waited a week before I could get tighter fit on the medal.  Whether you believe in talismans or not is beside the point.  The fact is, I do and ST Christopher has been mine in name as well as in reality.

Do you have a talisman?
No!  Scratch that question.  Seeing as it has already been established that everyone has a talisman, let me rephrase the question:
What IS your talisman?

Let me know in the comments below.

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.

Carrie Fisher/Debbie Reynolds

Mother and daughter passed within a day of each other.  Some may say Carrie Fisher’s mom, Debbie Reynolds suffered a stroke because of the stress of losing her daughter.  That’s an explanation people will be able to accept.  But there’s another esoteric interpretation of the events that happened at the end of December.  It’s one that I prescribe to:
Predestination

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image Carrie Fisher:
Wikimedia
Image Debbie Reynolds
Wikimedia

 

That concept that says we decide our fate when we choose the life we will live in transition hall.  What’s transition hall?  You may ask:

Transition Hall is where we go to choose our next incarnation.  I understand that some of my worldview may sound a bit esoteric.  However, for someone steeped in the paradigm, it is all simply one piece to the puzzle.

 

In Transition Hall, we choose not only the life we will lead but we also sign a contract that states all that will happen during our latest incarnation, from when we will incarnate and into what kind of life we will live to when we will transition once more back to our soul groups.

 

So what I’m saying here is that I believe that predestination tells us that there are certain aspects of our lives that simply can NOT be altered by the contract that we sign:
Our incarnation date and out transition date are two such things that can’t change.  

 

Unless we take matters into our own hands with our transition.  If we do that then we don’t return to our soul group.  That will cause a one way ticket back to humanity.  This is not a punishment as I’ve written here countless times over.  It is simply a spiritual law, a karmic law.

 

Perhaps during Carrie Fisher’s and Debbie Reynolds’ time in transition hall, they decided to pass together.  They obviously had a contentious relationship during their latest incarnation; another thing they chose when they incarnated.  They seem to have finally resolved their differences however.  Because they became family again, only to have their time cut short, perhaps, Debbie Reynolds DID need to be with Carrie and maybe that was in the contract Reynolds signed before she incarnated:
That if they were able to set aside their differences, Reynolds would transition with her daughter.  

 

I understand this is a delicate topic and I’m in no way making light of this tragic event.  I’m simply giving my own explanation for why I THINK mother and daughter may have passed together.  An esoteric reason I know.  Because I’m steeped in the paradigm I’m in, I find my thoughts naturally going in that direction.  May Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds find peace in their passing and we can celebrate their lives.

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.

 

I See Everything by Faith

I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.

C.S. Lewis

C.S. Lewis, as with many others has been in inspiration for me for countless years.  I may not have used his quotes here often, however it doesn’t mean that I don’t respect him.  His spirituality has always been in conjunction with mine.  I feel a common thread with Lewis especially after reading several of his books.

Image from:
Flickr
cslewis

When someone mentions the name CS Lewis, I THINK the first topic that comes to mind when anyone hears his name is The Chronicles of Narnia trilogy.  At least that’s where I discovered him first.

The above quote resonated deeply with me, because this is EXACTLY how I see my faith.

“Because by it I see everything else”

An interesting turn of phrase because as I’ve also said at Wisdom and Life, my faith is part of who I am and if you take away my faith then I cease to be who I am.  I see everything, as it appears Lewis does, through the lens of my faith.  EVERYTHING that happens in my life is due to God.  Both positive and negative.  You only have to look through my blog to see this is true.  Look at the category:
Connections to see how much this is true.  Every column in that category will prove my point.

I’m using Christianity and faith as interchangeable even though they are not.  I have Christian beliefs and I have spiritual beliefs.  Some of my worldview would seem anathema to Christianity.  For example, my belief in reincarnation, past lives.  It doesn’t mean I don’t consider myself Christian, because I surely do.  I just don’t affiliate with any particular denomination.  I carry on my own spiritual conversation with God…

…ALL THE TIME!

“Because by it I see everything else”

I measure my faith, my Christianity by my own standards and while some may doubt my belief, the only person that has to believe is myself.  I see God everywhere I go.  

–I believe, because my life is lead by my belief.
–I believe, because I’ve seen too much.
I believe, because I’m here.
–I believe, because my faith and God kept me here (as can be seen from the above link.)

I owe a debt of gratitude to God for saving me countless times.  My faith has saved me so many times.  God has saved me countless times.  I believe in Christianity, I believe in my faith because without it I surely wouldn’t be here.  I may not even be walking.

 

 

Be Happy! Be Well! Be Positive!
Blessings to you.
Chris

 

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;


We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying. For there truly is no end.

What is the Meaning of Life According to Wisdom and Life

I spent two Sundays ago in the afternoon (almost four hours) with a new friend.  Somehow we wound up discussing the meaning of life.  I know.  A heavy discussion for such a new friendship.  After we departed, my friend asked me to write up an email with my thoughts so they could share with their family.  I’ve decided to write up a column here at Wisdom and Life. I will also send an email to my friend.  All of this information is available at Wisdom and Life but is scattered throughout the blog.  I’ve decided to write up my ENTIRE worldview so it is in one place.
Worldview

 

 

 

 

 

Reincarnation/Past Lives

Here is what I think:

As those of you who know me understand, one of my core beliefs is in the Past Life/Reincarnation story.  So what happens when we incarnate in each life and WHY do we keep returning?  What is your philosophy on that?  You may ask.  Okay.  That’s a legitimate question.  I equate returning to the physical after a brief time of reflection the same way we move from grade to grade in school.  School?  You’re equating life and death to school?  Oh this should be good.  I bet you’re thinking.  Let me explain:
How do we move from grade to grade?  How do we get promoted to another grade?  After we have learned what we need to we are promoted to the next grade, correct?  Well that’s how I see each life we move into.  Once we have transitioned, we spend some time with our soul group.  What’s a soul group?  You can look here for more information:
Soul Groups

 

The time we spend with our soul group gives us the opportunity to reflect on the life we just left.  We look at each event we experienced and consider what we could have done better. So that hopefully when that event re-occurs in our next incarnation IF we made a decision that affected us adversely, we will continue seeing that event until we make a better choice.

 

The who concept in my worldview of reincarnation is to get to a point where we become more God like.  Where don’t HAVE to return.  Where we can CHOOSE to return.  So life, death and reincarnation is lesson building.  

 

So where does God, Jesus and Heaven fall in your view?

Do you believe in God?
Do you believe Jesus existed?
Do you believe in heaven?

 

God is everywhere in my life.  I carry on a daily conversation with HIM.  Too much has happened in my life NOT to see God in my life.  HE is the master controller of what happens when we go into transition.  Let’s continue using the school metaphor:
I see God as a school’s principal.  They oversee the system.  That’s the way I see God.  He monitors what happens in our lives.  You can communicate with him just as you can communicate with your school’s principal.

Jesus certainly existed.  He is the first to reincarnate.  Recall in the Bible, that he passed.  Also recall, that he returned as flesh to his disciples.  Jesus is the flesh of God.  He is God incarnated.  Jesus is the assistant principal in the school metaphore.  In most schools, the assistant principal is the disciplinarian.  This may have been apt at one point when God was seen as vengeful.  God is NOT and was NEVER vengeful.  God is love.

 

Heaven exists.  Whether it is a permanent place or simply a way station as in Transition Station, a place our souls go to review our last life I can’t say.  I like Robin Williams thoughts in the Movie What Dreams May Come when he said toward the end of that movie.  I’m paraphrasing of course because I can’t recall the EXACT words he used.  He said:
But what about going back?  Don’t worry about the kids.  They want us to go.  A whole human life is just a heartbeat here in heaven. (As in time doesn’t exist.)  Then we’ll all be together forever.

 

There is so much more that I believe:
That everything happens for a reason.
That predestination is real.

 

One more link to share from Wisdom and Life, another similar to this column:
My Worldview

 

What is YOUR worldview?

 

Be Happy!  Be Well!  Be Positive!
Blessings to you.

Chris

Once you realize that life is eternal,
That our souls our eternal,
That we return to light and physical over and over;

We then lose all our distress
We then lose all our fear of dying.  For there truly is no end.