Endigar 736

From Courage to Change of January 10;

I suspect that if I reclaimed all the minutes, hours, and days I’ve sacrificed to worry and fear, I’d add years to my life. When I succumb to worry, I open a Pandora’s box of terrifying pictures, paranoid voices, and relentless self-criticism. The more attention I pay to this mental static, the more I lose my foothold in reality. Then nothing useful can be accomplished.

To break the cycle of worry and fear, I’m learning to focus all my attention on this very moment. I can turn away from destructive thoughts and concentrate instead on the sights and sounds around me: light and shadows, the earth beneath my feet, the pulse of everyday living – all pieces of the here-and-now. These bits of reality help rescue me from “what ifs” and “should haves” by anchoring me in the present. Prayer and meditation, the slogans, and phone calls to Al-Anon friends are other sources of serenity that bring me back to this moment. As I shut out the noise, I am more receptive to my Higher Power’s will, and therefore much more able to work my way through difficult times.

Today’s Reminder

This day is all I have to work with, and it is all I need. If I am tempted to worry about tomorrow’s concerns, I will gently bring my mind back to today.

“The past has flown away. The coming month and year do not exist. Ours only is the present’s tiny point.” ~ Mahmud Shabistari

 

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It resonates with me, this realization that I have spent so much time in negative rumination.  I have felt the painful flames of shadow dragons. These visions of darkness and abandonment become real as I entertain their possibility. I know that my hope is to protect myself, to surround and fend off the . . . fill in the blank.

I have been listening to the audio set for Natalie Goldberg’s “Writing Down the Bones.” It is spiritually soothing for me to know about her writing practice that combines lessons learned in Zen meditation. Many of her suggestions to help writers to go ahead and write can be applied to the self going ahead and living in this moment.

I am learning to trust the way that is laid before me, to take responsibility for the tasks and let my Higher Power convert that raw material to fulfillment.  I will gently bring my mind back to today. Yes, I believe I will.

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