By Diane Donovan-Vaughn – Sermon 6/9/2018

Observe yourself. It is easier said than done, why? The mind or ego hides in plain sight. In a way, observing yourself might be easier if you just observed where you experience the thoughts you hear. Ego driven thoughts are actually located in your head.

Think about times you have been triggered. Think about what your thoughts said to you. Just like in the “Wheel of Awareness” (Dan Siegel) says, you can observe these thoughts and realize that they are not your identity. However, you will not be able to observe your thoughts efficiently while you are participating with them and while you still believe in them.

It is so easy to live in a triggered matrix but I have noticed when this happens to me that quite often it begins with a sentence inside my head. Then a rush of emotion that has been attached to that thought triggers even more thoughts. When you get triggered, you can isolate but just as easily you can start talking to others to cosign your beliefs. The mind will offer so-called facts to verify your version of reality. Whether you are talking or isolating with your triggered emotions, you are living inside an ego-driven matrix and have become lost.

To find our mission on earth, obviously we have to be able to hear what it is. We do not have to run around to find it. We have to stop listening to the ego, stop participating in its self-created matrix and enter the area of the heart. The soul or higher self often speaks in the still, small voice. It will whisper a mission to you. The ego yells and tells you do something. Nevertheless, everything that happens to us, even the matrix in our head is probably pointing us to our mission. In other words, the yelling of ego may also be pointing toward a mission but it will not be able to finish the message because it gives fearful, negative advice.

Think about the teenagers from Florida who have become activists. They have found a mission in a very traumatic way. When their shooting trauma occurred, possibly the polyvagal nervous system was activated and Post Traumatic Stress can occur.   By becoming activists, these teens are moving toward solutions and creating a safe world instead of hiding in a closet or trying to forget about what happened or suppressing the event. They are doing a mission.

It gets very tricky when you are triggered. How do know when you are in an issue or the matrix? Remember, the thoughts are inside your head. The solutions are contentious and can be self-righteous. The ego strives to control reality and remake it into its own version, to fix and change the world that it perceives is broken and scary.

Quantum physicists say that reality coalesces around your focus. Focus on evil and the enemy and you create evil and the enemy. To move your focus to love when you are triggered is simply a move from your head to your heart. Silence the thoughts or move them to your heart. Ask your heart or higher self to show you the mission. Breathe and relax.

Years ago when looking at my problematic, depressed, anxious, and fearful mind, I was shocked not only by my mind’s ability to think these thoughts so quickly but by my utter inability to see anything else unless nature could stop me for a minute with a sunset so magnificent that I could no longer hold my negative focus. Mindfulness really does make it possible to live in the experience of life rather than the constructed belief of life – the matrix.

But even today, my mind still offers me the negative, the anxious, the fearful and absolute beliefs. Catching these thoughts is amazing because they are so convincing. Think about a belief like “You have to work to be able to survive” or its companion thought, “I have to make money.” I heard my mind say this to me even though I know it is not true. Catching my mind offering up its beliefs and fears is a game for me now.

Luckily, I learned to listen to the still, small voice of the higher self even before I knew how to stop the mind’s matrix creating. The mission I have on Earth has been much harder to achieve and taken longer that I wish simply due to the delay caused by not living in my heart, by not being the love of my love and not knowing that I know nothing.

You have a mission. Do you know what it is? If you do not know the mission, then your ego is still too loud. If you think you need to know some thing, then your ego is still too loud. If you are not feeling love, then your ego is too loud. The mission is filled with love. Anything else and you are not on the path.

Today’s compassion lesson and practice from <em>A Year of Living with more Compassion – 52 Quotes and Weekly Compassion Practices </em>(Edited by Richard Fields) Selection 44 (pp. 134-135) is a by Donald Meinchenbaum who chose this quote by Joseph Campbell. Campbell said,
“Opportunities to find deep powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging.” Donald’s theme for his lesson is “Resiliency and Compassion: Post Traumatic Growth.”

Let’s practice.

Close your eyes. Breathe deeply. Inhale through the nose and exhale though the mouth. Relax as you exhale. Place your attention inside your head. Observe your thoughts. As you watch your thoughts, observe how your thoughts make you feel. Remember a troubling problem or problematic person you have in life. Observe your thoughts. Observe how you feel. Now move your attention to your heart and again breathe slowly in through the nose and out through the mouth. Imagine that you can sit down inside your heart and once again observe the thoughts you had a second ago about your problem. You might begin to notice that your mind gives your problem the power to hurt you, to make you tense and ultimately to remain in fear. Notice that the mind is creating a matrix of pain that in this present moment in your heart does not even exist. Relax into your higher self and listen to the still, small voice whispering to you about your mission and about love.