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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Treasures of Adversity

I wrote this article when the financial crisis struck, and even though things seem to be moving forward, we're still in an uphill battle, it seems.  So I think this is still appropriate.

The Treasures of Adversity

         You and I have been witnessing one of the most challenging periods that our country and our world has known in our life time.  I’m sure this is nothing new to you.  We’ve been reading and hearing about the present financial crisis for quite some time now.  In the numerous times I’ve tuned into the news on radio or TV, I’ve been aware of the output of fear that underlies so many broadcasts.  And it’s natural to be emotionally triggered by the state of affairs, especially in the Metro Detroit area, which has been hit particularly hard.  Even if you’re not one of the ones who’s been laid off or lost a job, or has felt butterflies at bill time each month, we all know someone who has.  It would be all but impossible not to be affected by our economy right now, and to stay consistently positive in spite of what we are experiencing.
         With that said, however, it’s possible to see challenges such as these, through a new lens.  I believe that everything happens for a reason, and that there is knowledge to be gained from any adversity - knowledge that can heal us of our fears and bring us deep and satisfying peace.  Mother Teresa said that the most beautiful flower, the lotus, arises from its roots in the slime and mud at the bottom of the pond, so perhaps we are being called upon to awaken to some higher purpose - to bring a better, more glorious self into play.
         Viewing life events as having significance, purpose and meaning, has always brought greater satisfaction and fulfillment to mankind.  What if we could look upon our financial crisis as a turning point for our world - for ourselves.  What if we could see that all is in a state of perfection, and that we are being given the opportunity to open our eyes and refocus our energy on what matters most - not money and material goods, but spirit, love, connection, and faith.  When life experiences bring us to our knees, we are actually fortunate, because although these may be painful, our souls long for answers we have not yet found.  Maybe we are being led to the greatest treasure of all without really knowing it.  If we open our eyes, become aware, look inside, and tune into our divine guidance, we can become greater masters of our lives, and learn that we are indeed safe in the hands of a higher loving force that is with us at all times.
         What are you learning right now?  With the help of the Divine Spirit inside of you, what do you know you need to learn?  What can your difficulties teach you right now?  Are you a worrier?  Can you replace worry with prayer, meditation, deep breathing, and affirmative thought?  Can you be more aware of how your thoughts affect your reality?  Can you refocus your life’s activities to include more laughter, hugs, and service?  Not only can these activities reduce stress, but they can bring greater aliveness, vitality, health, and comfort.  I believe that all is for our highest good.  With every loss there is a gain, and since our souls are always evolving towards perfect peace, everything that happens to us, happens to spur us on to that place of joy and tranquility.
         So let’s reframe our national crisis.  Let’s see its good intention and its positive nature.  Our world is turning a corner - history is being made, and we each have the opportunity to turn lemons into lemonade.  We need this crisis to search inside, reach upward and to grow ourselves.  If we each follow our inner direction, we will find our way, emerging with our best possible self, and creating magnificence, empowerment, and peace of mind.  

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