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At the beginning of November, I proposed that all the four chats in this month be based on the theme of ‘thankfulness and gratitude’. In the wake of the election results of the US presidential election that have created disbelief, turmoil and despair for one side, and perhaps an equal amount of disbelief and (muted) celebration for the other, I believe that there is a great opportunity for refocusing on gratitude through connection. How grateful are we truly for what has transpired? How connected or disconnected are we from the reality that surrounds us?

Many thoughts on connection have percolated through my heart and mind. Some of them have come during my walking soujourns, while others have arrived during my meditation practice. I share some of them with you, with much humility, on the premise that you may connect with one or more threads, and weave your own tapestry of gratitude. I remain grateful to be the conduit for what follows…

  • Connect with sound, light, touch, color, movement, silence and stillness – write, paint, dance, compose, read, meditate – reconnect with your heart and soul, and be grateful for all your talents.

  • Connect with the heart of those on the ‘other side of the fence’. Travel outside your echo chamber and listen to their voices – truly listen without the labels.

  • Be a bridge person and tear down the wall(s) that may disconnect you from empathy, compassion and joy. Feel the gratitude flow through you as you do this.

  • Connect with nature, with children, with pets, with pet-projects, with plans that you have put on hold, and with whatever returns you to your creative and creating mode. That is the true celebration of gratitude.

  • Connect with volunteering, the under-privileged, the nursing homes, the senior centers, the libraries, the homeless and women’s shelters, the soup kitchens, the Habitats for Humanity and more – nobody can take that power of connection away from you. The more you do this, the more it is that gratitude will exponentially grow.

  • Make a music or movie or reading playlist, an activity playbook of writing or gardening or cooking or… Make two of each. One for the happy times (joy) AND the other for the not-so-happy ones (melancholy). Connect to the joy playlist and playbook when in excess melancholy, and connect to melancholy when in excess joy, or as you deem appropriate. And then, one day when you have learnt to mostly be in equanimity, you will find that the two playlists and playbooks have merged into One. You have arrived at, connected with your center, and more importantly – you have learned to stay there. At the center.

  • It is when we go outside of ourselves to go beyond, past the surface waves that keep us bound to our familiar but limited shores of temporary victory and defeat, that we train ourselves to connect – and stay connected – with the permanence of the deep sea of gratitude…

  • Connect with ‘those people’ – the plumber, the electrician, the housekeeper, the landscaper, the delivery man, the older neighbor couple across the street, the veteran next door, and more. When they come into your space, make them feel that they matter. Offer a big smile, a cup of coffee, a small tip at the end of their job, offer to blow the leaves in their yard, give them a ride to their doctor’s appointment… Any and every random act of kindness elevates the level of connection, of gratitude.

  • Why do we need to connect? The heart is the space of the infinite – and the infinite cannot be whole if the two circles that join to form the union choose to remain separated and split – it is in their connection in the middle, in their slightest of touches, that the two individual circles can form the infinite – and then there is a quantum jump – all possibilities of connection between zero and infinity become possible…

  • How do we reconnect despite our ‘differences’? We can choose to go from an infinitesimal separation to infinite connection with a very slight opening of our closed circles. We may have to stretch and contort a bit to accommodate the other (circle). Visualize the infinity symbol in 3-D space where there is a continuum created by a single line curving around upon itself. On the other hand, we can also choose to stay infinitely disconnected while being in infinitesimal proximity ~ people living in the same house who are in physical proximity but emotionally on separate planets, two neighbors in disagreement, two nations within a single nation, and so on. More often than not, it only takes a very slight movement towards each other’s heartspace for us to ‘break the disconnect’ and bring us into that field of attraction where we can find renewed connection. Find that activation energy. We all have it within us.

That is all. I hope that you will read and reflect on some of the above. I am grateful for my connection with each and every one of you. Every interaction with you has helped me move, even if ever so slightly, towards the center. Towards the heart. Towards the infinite possibilites that love unveils.

Namaste,

Kumud @AjmaniK

Do connect with the #SpiritChat community on twitter – Sunday, November 13th at 9amET/2pmUTC. I know that many, including me, will be grateful for your shared wisdom. Thank you.

Gratitude through Connection!

Gratitude through Connection!