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Monday, July 29, 2013

Dear Inner Child

I have known you all my life. Do you remember when we used to snuggle up in bed, dreaming of faraway places and living in a castle full of toys? I remember how we loved going away to play in the bush behind our house; we were so care-free and happy. Did we not have the best times gazing at the stars and wondering if an angel would visit us later? I remember whispering in each other’s ears and talking about our secrets. We spoke of magical beings, our laughter echoing across the riverbanks. What about the magic of Christmas, the smell of the tree, the story about the birth of baby Jesus? I can still taste the litchis and mangoes, their sweet sticky juice running down our chins and fingers.

 Oh the pain when we fell over in the school yard and how we held each other tight when other children made fun of us. Do you remember how we comforted each other on those scary days when the rain made the roof rattle and the strong wind shook the windows while lightning changed the trees into ghosts?

Then something happened. Some big people told us to stop dreaming, to stop laughing and they broke our spell. I started believing them when they said we were not so wonderful and special. I started believing them more than you. Sadness overcame me and in trying to protect you; I chose to hide you and stifle your spontaneity. Gradually your voice became softer replaced by others full of ‘reality’, warning me of dangers I did not know existed. But I missed you and every once in a while, I’d allow you to come back but our fun was short lived.

Our bond became fragile, you were angry and disappointed. You withdrew your love, I felt abandoned and hurt. Sometimes you would scream, other times you were jealous or ashamed. You desperately sought my attention but I chose to ignore you as I did not want to feel your pain.

You did not go away, you could not. You waited patiently and faithfully for us to reunite.

It’s been a long time...too long. I celebrate our coming together which feels like a homecoming. I’m so happy I want to shout and sing! I am so sorry for the lost time. I promise never to let you go again. I promise to love and protect you. We are one. You are me and I am you.

Bless you my inner child!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Have you experienced the zone?

Some 2,600 years ago, the ancient Greek poet Pindar wrote: “Become who you are by learning who you are.” What he meant was that you are born with a particular makeup that predisposes you to certain paths that will ultimately take you towards your destiny.
Some people, however, never become who they are meant to be as they conform to the tastes and dictates of others, and they end up wearing a mask that hides their true nature. Those of us who learn who we really are by paying attention to that voice inside and the force within us, become what we are fated to become – an individual with a definite life mission.

Many of the greatest masters in history have confessed to experiencing some kind of force or voice or sense of destiny that has guided them forward. Socrates described a voice, his daemon, which told him what to avoid. Goethe spoke about a kind of spirit that dwelled within him and compelled him to fulfill his destiny. Einstein talked of an inner voice that shaped the direction of his speculations. Leonardo da Vinci referred to some hidden force within, that drove him to become an acute observer of nature which led to his unrivalled ability to paint in such intricate detail. In 1781 Mozart left his family incurring his father’s banishment as he decided to stay in Vienna where he composed his timeless operas.

All of us are born unique, with traits marked genetically in our DNA. Our exact genetic makeup has never occurred before nor will it ever be repeated. This primal uniqueness naturally wants to assert and express itself in the course of our life. When this force is expressed fully by an individual, we refer to such a person as a genius or a master. You and I also experience this force when we feel unusually energized and focused. Our mind becomes completely absorbed in the task at hand and we get answers and solutions to problems seemingly out of nowhere, as if springing from an undefined part of us. During those moments, we enter a zone where time, pain and limitations are irrelevant, a zone of heightened creativity, of unbridled and endless possibilities with a greater command of reality and of the natural forces surrounding us. It is a time when we merge with unseen forces, a time when our internal forces forge a pact with external forces, enabling us to make rapid, creative decisions as if having access to the heart of life – to the divine. This is the time when the brilliant scientist can uncover a new law of physics; the researcher discovers the cure to a previously incurable disease. A time when the sublime artwork of a Master touches us to the core. A time when the Olympic athlete ignores the pain racking her body to keep going and cross the finish line.

We admire and applaud those people who have mastered access to the zone, that divine part within. We call them ‘Masters’. Mastery is accessible to all of us, evidenced by the fleeting episodes in our life when we successfully access the zone, that state of focus, positivity, creativity. Ralph Waldo Emerson put it thus:
“A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the luster of the firmament of bards and sages. Yet he dismisses without notice his thought, because it is his. In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts; they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.”

Steps to access the zone:

·         Be silent and go within.
·         Practice mindfulness and observe your environment.
·         Observe your feelings and your thoughts without judgement.
·         Scan your body to become aware of any physical sensations.
·         Be present in everything you do.
·         Develop the certainty that you have the answers within.
·         Know that you have a gift within that is seeking to emerge.
·         Give unconditionally.
·         Immerse yourself in literature that will inspire you towards greatness.
·         Connect with your soul, the divine part of you.
·         Repeat affirmations.
·         Let the artist and magician within you come out.

What are the paths you have used to access the zone?