As spiritual beings having a human experience, we can conceive of the body as a learning device as we get our education in peace.
It is said that our one purpose here in these physical bodies is to re-member our true nature. The state of dis-memberment we find ourselves in as humans is an illusion. We feel disconnected, fragmented, separate, and alone. We are under the misguided impression that we must earn our way peace when actually this is our birthright. We blindly seek ways to learn right action and gain true knowledge when it is already our rightful inheritance. What we are actually here to do is unlearn.
A favorite quote of mine from Rumi, articulates this beautifully:
Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
It seems almost like a cruel prank that we should have to work so hard to experience something that has been ours all along. In A Course in Miracles, a miracle is described as a shift in thinking from fear to Love. Quite simply, we become miracle workers as we move from darkness to light, one thought at a time. There is no fancy trick or formula, no advanced technique – just a willingness to choose again.
This process of repeatedly choosing Love over fear, Forgiveness over judgement, Light instead of dark, is our life’s purpose. In this way, we are all connected, united, together, One. Imagine a world in which every person in every moment, consciously chooses Love. A world in which the curriculum of peace is universally attended, and the illusion of fear is dismembered. Who wouldn’t want this?
So how can we begin? How can we ‘be the change we wish to see’? Let us return to the body as a learning device. If we are to simply accept our inheritance, then we must release the barriers and blocks. At the physical level, we can remember what acceptance feels like in the miraculous moment of the inhalation – we accept oxygen into the lungs by allowing them to relax. We relax to receive. We can practice receptivity by fully relaxing as we inhale. We can immerse ourselves in the experience of softening to allow the inflation of the lungs. We can allow the prana or lifeforce to nourish every cell in our physical bodies. We can revel in the remembrance of something bigger than us, giving us life. In this moment, the best thing we can do is no-thing. It is this moment of non-resistance that plugs us back into the loving source of all things.
When we can do this at the physical level, we don’t just physically relax. The nervous system or energy body re-members too. We move back in the direction of wholeness and peace. When we can regularly return the physical and subtle body to this place of peace, the mind wants to ‘join the party’. From this gear or setting of ease, the mind is inclined to Love, Forgiveness, Compassion, Joy, and Peace.
In this meditation, I would like you to envision every cell in your body relaxing to receive oxygen with every inhale. Imagine the breath contains medicine, the antidote to fear. Choose a soothing color and visualize the breath in this color, replenishing and restoring you at the cellular level. The more you soften, the more you soak in. Let this be something you practice throughout the day, as the backdrop to all your worldly interactions. Let Love be the default setting.