Conversations with Past and Future Selves

Would you like an opportunity to speak with yourself, either from the past or the future? To have things revealed to you, to make your life easier or to offer you a chance to avoid pitfalls.

That’s the question that came to me recently.

The event that created this was the purchase of a new bed for our upstairs bedroom. In order to make space I needed to relocate all the storage bins I’d shoved under the old bed. I’d really packed them in and basically only had a vague idea what they contained.

I made myself a promise to sort through every bin and make decisions regarding what was worth keeping and what needed to be thrown away.

My discoveries were very enlightening. There were all sorts of interesting things covering several different time periods in my life, some from college, some from my early working years and a few things that were more recent.

I found a lot of journals I’d written and decided to leaf through a few. I was struck by the life events that concerned me at the time I wrote them, some of which remain with me today, while others have long since been resolved.

A question popped up.

I wondered how my life would have changed if the ‘current me’ could go back and have a conversation with the ‘past me’. What could I have learned? And would I have listened and changed course?

I’m not sure.

Some part of me believes I wouldn’t have paid attention, and gone ahead and made the same decisions, despite the sound advice I received.

I don’t know about that either.

What would you have done; listened or ignored your ‘future self’? It’s an interesting question to kick around. Certainly, I’d have liked to avoid many of the problems in my life and taken an easier route.

But would I really?

The reason I ask is, would I still be the same person that I am today if I’d made different choices? And if I had, what would the consequences have been? Suppose the advice given me by my ‘future self’ altered the decisions I made that led me to a new friend, or a better job, or a wise investment?

How can anyone know the right path to take so that they experience the outcomes they most desire?

Something twisted during my musing about this.

I wondered, what would my life be like if the ‘current me’ could talk with the ‘future me’?

What if that were possible? What questions would I ask?

A few came to me quickly. How long will I live? Will I lose those closest to me? What will my day-to-day life be like? Will the New York Giants ever win another Super Bowl?

I sat with all of these questions and more for a while before deciding that I don’t really want to know.

I think it would spoil the surprise. And I think it would change every moment of my ‘current life’ because I’d be thinking about the ‘future me’.

I also think my life would lose its spontaneity, its spark, and its sparkle.

So, despite how much I might learn, I would choose just to wave to my ‘past’ and ‘future’ selves from a distance and go on about living my ‘current’ life.

We can still be friends, but for now, I choose to live in my present moment.

Heading Into The Storm

It seems human nature to try to avoid challenging situations in life, almost like we’re hard-wired that way. Perhaps some internal awareness is operating, attempting to save us from having to deal with things we wished were not a part of our life.

When a difficulty presents itself to you, what are you inclined to do? Do you shy away or pretend it’s not real or solicit for help from others? Or do you face it, recognizing it’s unlikely to be resolved without your direct intervention?

There are of course lots of other strategies, but most seem to come with potentially uncomfortable consequences.

You may be thinking this very moment about something you’re facing and wondering how to proceed. Or you may want to arm yourself with a new approach for when the time comes for your next challenge.

You might already know that I am a writer. Afterall, you are reading something I’ve written right now. But I write more than these posts. I am wholly engaged in a series of books that all go by the title of Little Buddha, and I’ve just completed Book Four. In it there is a story about a young man, Max, who worked in the western part of the America doing an internship with the US Forestry Service. This gave him the opportunity to observe nature and experience her wisdom.

Although he learned many things from the Forestry workers, a Native American by the name of Black Elk, was the one who taught him the ways of nature and filled him with a living wisdom he could carry with him. More than this even, Black Elk taught Max how to observe and understand life for himself. Certainly, a most precious gift.

Perhaps the most valuable teaching of all came one day when Max was observing a herd of buffalo and watched as a massive snowstorm swept toward them. He paid as careful attention as he could, trying to see what each of them would do. In the chaos and blinding snow too much happened for him to notice it all. He wanted to understand better, so he asked Black Elk to share his wisdom.

Black Elk, whose normal approach was to teach through asking questions, decided to explain through the use of his own observations.

This is the story he told Max.

“Many, many years ago there was a Sacred Buffalo. All the other buffalo watched the Sacred Buffalo and followed the Sacred Buffalo everywhere it went, always finding enough to eat. One day, a great storm arrived. Many buffalo turned away from the storm, charging as fast as they could, trying to outrun it. Others watched to see what the Sacred Buffalo would do. The Sacred Buffalo snorted and stamped its great hooves upon the earth. Then, giving one great cry, it glanced at the herd and ran full speed into the storm, disappearing in a wall of white snow. All the other buffalo followed stampeding behind where the Sacred Buffalo had disappeared into the whiteness. A short time later all the buffalo emerged from the storm into a place of stillness and there, grazing peacefully, stood the Sacred Buffalo.”

After some more discussion Max came to understand the value of heading into the storm. He accepted and embraced the story and shifted his life, recognizing the wisdom of the Sacred Buffalo.

In my own life, I’ve seen that trying to avoid or run away from my problems has caused an enormous amount of pain and suffering for me. I’ve allowed all those scary, fearful, difficult decisions that have come to visit me too much reign over me.

The essence of Max and Black Elk’s story enlightens me. Opening myself and allowing courage to come forth, then acting swiftly and boldly, heading directly into the storm of any problem, I now see as the wisest path forward. It shortens the length of the storm and leads me into a place of peace.

In the story Black Elk gives Max a carved wooden buffalo that had been bleached white by the sun as a reminder for his travels through life.

My hope is that I remember the teaching of this story.

Should you wish to read more of the story, you can order a copy of the book, Little Buddha Book Four by Rob H. Geyer, on Amazon in either print or ebook format.

Choosing Your Memories

If someone asked you to share one of your memories, what would you choose to tell them?

Now imagine the same person asked you to share five or ten or fifty, how many of them would be ‘good’ memories?

If you were given a day or two to conjure up as many memories as you possibly could, how long would it take before you mentioned a ‘bad’ memory?

It fascinates me to consider what my answers to these questions would be. It feels like some sort of subtle test, a way to measure my satisfaction with my life.

I had an occasion recently to investigate this idea up close and personal. As my mom’s power of attorney, it was up to me to sign all the mortgage closing documents on her recent house sale.

I’d promised myself that I would walk through the house before the closing. I wanted a chance to capture the living memories I felt were stored there. I wanted to sweep them up and bring them with me. To store them somewhere safe inside me so that I could hold them, perhaps forever.

As I walked in the front door, the floodgates opened. I can’t recall the very first time I entered the home I grew up in and I that I have been a part of for over sixty years, but so many things stood there in front of me.

The house has so many interesting features and every inch of space is utilized. There is a shelf inset into the wall in the foyer. One of the shelves used to hold a small wooden ship I carved for my father. It had toothpick masts and thread rigging and it took me a long time to build. It’s not there anymore. I have no idea where it went.

I walked into the living room. A place where so many joyous family gatherings were held. A place where a mounted deer head rested above the fireplace. I’d bought it at a garage sale for 25 cents. I thought it was a great deal. I’m willing to bet the seller and his wife thought they’d made a profit. The deer head is gone now. I have no idea where it went.

On into the dining room, where all our family dinners happened. My mom was an excellent cook and I remembered many of the meals we ate there. If I stretched a bit, I could almost taste them. It became my mom’s reluctant bedroom, when it wasn’t safe for her to go up and down the stairs any longer.

Going from room to room brought more and more sweet memories. Words, sounds, feelings. The comings and goings of six decades. All the games, conversations, fears, hopes, and dreams. All the wonderful cookies after school, fresh out of my mom’s oven. The mad crazy ping pong games with my father in the basement, which was too short for our smashing forehands. All the imaginative games with my sister, one of which was pretending to be radio disc jockeys under the dining room table. Don’t ask me why that was our station headquarters. It just was.

Upstairs I walked down the hall to my bedroom. I could still see it as it was when I was a child, the placement of my desk and chair and bed, the Hopi Indian wall hanging, even the closet that had a sort of secret compartment where I stored my prized possessions.

My memory lane is long. The savoring, both touching and sweet.

Perhaps you’ve lived and lost some parts of you, a house, a family member, friend, favored pet or a lessening of your skills and senses. It happens.

What I think matters most to me is what I do with my memories.

Do I let the ‘bad’ ones overtake me, bringing me down and crushing me into silence and grief?

Or do I sift through them until all that are left are the golden, glowing, shiny memories. The ones I wish to keep and hold near to me.

The beautiful thing is, we each get to choose.

What Is Your Stride

What is the distance between your feet as you walk? Do you take generously long strides or tentative short ones?

What do you think it says about you?

What messages are you sending to yourself?

It strikes me that there is something quite valuable to learn from spending some time observing this simple physical phenomenon.

I find that I take very long strides. I can gobble up distances quickly, especially if my pace is intentionally fast. The other day I wondered why this was. It seems to be my default. But why? And what, if anything, does it mean to me?

I had to sit with these questions.

As you probably already know, sitting with questions can be somewhat uncomfortable. I find I want to know the answers and am not always patient enough to wait. I’m inclined to want to move on to something I can solve.

Well, there’s a pretty big clue for me!

Perhaps one of the reasons I take long strides is because I am impatient. That feels very familiar to me. I think I’ve told myself this before. And this answer seems to link automatically to another insight. It’s the one about ‘running out of time’.

There is an internal time clock running in the background somewhere inside my head. It prompts me to move and suggests I need to move NOW, or risk running out of time to get done what I say I want.

And the clock is connected to a list, identifying all the tasks and accomplishments I seek to complete. Tick tock, time to move and take some more long strides.

It’s interesting to me, that when I take long strides, I find I often lose my balance. Could it get any more metaphorically obvious?

The sheer act of walking too quickly affects my balance.

Hmmm.

When I’m conscious of this, I try to slow down and shorten my stride and give myself an opportunity to consider the path I’m taking. Would it enhance my life to be more careful and more patient?

I wonder too, where am I going in such a hurry anyway?

I’m not sure exactly. And this observation feels important too.

I encourage myself to stop and sit for a while and consider. Where am I going and how do I want to get there? And how do I want to feel once I arrive? Each of these questions seems worthy of answering.

So, here’s a question for you.

What is the length of your stride?

Is it slow and thoughtful? Is it just the right amount of slow, or is it so tentative that you risk never arriving anywhere?

Does it vary? Does it change whether you’re going uphill (facing hardships or challenges) or downhill (when everything seems easy, and nothing is out of place)?

I wonder whether, like me, you’ve rarely thought about this. I wonder too, whether now that a seed has been planted, what will happen next for you?

For me, I believe it’s time for some changes.

I’m going to try to shorten my gait and stay in balance more often. I’m going to give myself a break by releasing the inner need to beat the clock ticking away inside my head. I plan on hitting the pause button, so that I can find a new sense of balance, without the misplaced belief that I will run out of time. And I’m going to pay attention to the length of my stride and listen to see if it wants to share a message with me.

One Path to Love

On Good Friday in 2018 I spent three hours, from noon until 3:00pm, standing, sitting, and walking around the sanctuary of Unity Church in Albany (NY) with the hope that I would be able to connect spiritually and come to a greater understanding of the events surrounding Easter.

I sensed a strength, peace and clarity and felt a ‘knowing’ arrive within me, as if I were present during that time. It felt intimate and real, and I wanted very much to capture each of the stories so that they could be shared with the world. Over the next several weeks I received the words you are about to read. But more than the words, I received the beauty, grace and Yeshiwa’s (Jesus’s) loving heart that was and is the center of each of these stories. The full text appears in my book, Nine, a Holy Week Story of Love.

I do not ask you to believe me. I ask only that you read the words and let them reveal to you what truth they have to share.

This part of the story tells of an encounter with one of Yeshiwa’s tormentors who was present during his whipping.

Chapter Six: Path (excerpt)

Yeshiwa’s narrative

And I was given over to the pain of men. To men whose hearts had long ago left them, leaving them free to release all of their harshness upon me without limit. And yet in their desire to exalt over me, they suffered as I did, with every lash and cruel word, as they brought more pain into their lives and mine. When they had exhausted all of their strength, they dropped their whips and let me lay upon the coolness of the earth.

I could feel the emptiness of their spirits and I wept tears for them, for their lost lives. One, a man named Aaron, came over to me, grabbed my hair and pulled it back, so that my face tilted up toward his. I knew he meant to mock me further, but when our eyes met, he found he could not move or speak. In that single loving moment, his heart came alive. Came back fully to him. The light that had left him was born anew and was fanned into full flame and he fell down beside me and wept until he was as dry as the desert.

He gazed at me beseechingly and said, “I am so sorry master, so very sorry. I know I deserve nothing good, for I am a most wicked man, but please, please forgive me.”

I placed my hand over his heart and looked into his eyes, holding his gaze, and said to him, “My son, you are forgiven, go in peace and show love to the world. Show them the love I have shown you.”

He bowed at my feet, continuing to cry, and said, “Thank you my lord, this I will do all the days of my life,” and he helped me to my feet and walked the path to the cross with me.

—-

The words above flowed easily through me, channeled in a way I cannot fully comprehend, yet believe without even a shadow of a doubt. Each time I read them I cry tears when Aaron’s heart is changed and becomes alive again.

What a wonderful thing, to have your heart revived, to have your life changed, to want to share what you received with others, to give away your gift.

To me, this is the radiant message here. It is the redeeming nature of love. A free gift, available to everyone who chooses it.

That is what channeled through me and stays with me. I hope there is something here for you too.

Dementia’s Song

I’d like to share a very personal story with you, one that may resonate with your life experiences if you know someone with dementia.

No doubt this condition takes many routes. Some happen quite quickly. Others occur in a slow ebbing spiral, descending almost without notice, until one day the stark differences become painfully obvious.

It demands a very high emotional price, certainly from the one personally experiencing it, but also from those surrounding them. Watching the progression can be numbing, knowing there is so little that can be done.

Each person living through the changes must face their own emotional challenges, which of course are impacted by physical, mental, financial, and spiritual concerns.

I’m guessing that no two experiences are alike, but that there can be help and healing through sharing. That’s why I’m writing this post. I cannot know what assistance it may provide, but saying it here helps me and I hope it opens some doors for you.

Recently I awoke at 4:30 in the morning with a poem inside my mind, waiting for release, asking to be written. I hadn’t been expecting it, and yet it was there. So, I rose and wrote it down and felt a strong urge to put it into the world.

Here it is.

Dementia’s Song

I hope she knows me today.

My mother sits in her chair.

More than half faded from this life.

I cannot tell if she knows me.

And her stare gives nothing away.

I am left to wonder.

Is any part of her still here with me?

Once so sharp.

Now

With so few words.

Is there any promise for tomorrow

Or is that hope gone,

Like the sun winking out

At the end of the day

On the far horizon?

I wonder

Can I surrender

This fantasy inside of me

That I have any control

Over her staying?

I wonder too

Will her love remain

Here with me

When she finally leaves?

Perhaps that is for my heart to decide.

I want it to be so.

I hope she knows me today.

This was written after I’d visited my mom only to discover she didn’t seem to know me anymore. It left me fully disoriented, my world upside down. How could we have had such a good interactive conversation just the day before? Hours ago, that’s all, just a few hours.

I watch her trying to assemble words into sentences. The words will not come. They are like a skittish kitten hiding under a bed. The more you try to coax them to come out, the further they retreat from you.

Something obvious occurs to me.

I have no control. I cannot do anything to change this. I feel helpless.

And another thing occurs to me. Perhaps she feels the exact same way.

I wonder, how am I to deal with this?

A word shines brightly inside of me, grabbing my attention.

Acceptance.

It doesn’t mean I don’t try to help or be supportive, but it does mean I accept the reality we are experiencing. The wisdom inside this teaches me to accept all outcomes. It alerts me that my suffering is caused by my resistance to accept what is.

It is important for me to feel my feelings, to dive headlong into them, rather than trying to avoid them, even though I know it will be painful. By now, I know that it is far less painful to acknowledge my feelings, rather than a prolonged avoidance or resistance to letting them come into the light.

So, I will try to sit with no expectations and just be with her, accepting what each of us is experiencing and centering in love, as best as I can.

Not Accepting Shame

Are you familiar with the feeling of shame? Do you know where it comes from for you?

I wonder how often we can answer this question, because most of the time it just appears, unbidden.

I’ve begun to investigate some of the emotions that make me uncomfortable to see if unraveling them helps in letting them go. I’ve discovered several are insidious. They can’t always be traced back to a source. It’s also possible that they are buried so deeply that there is no thread to pull to start a healing process.

When I stop and think about ‘shame’, some obvious causes come to mind. As a child you are particularly vulnerable. You have so little power and so few defenses.

I distinctly remember having a finger pointed at me and being told that I should feel ashamed of myself. This brings up so much for me. To start with, the gesture of having a finger pointed directly at you is very threatening and is reinforced by the negative energetic force that flows through it.

And then, the implication that you ‘should’ (a word I’ve eliminated from my vocabulary because of its negative power), feel ashamed of ‘yourself’. To me, this indicates that you are supposed to obey your training and ‘know better’ and rather than having to be scolded by someone else, you should perform a self-scolding.

The idea here is that you’ve received enough scoldings that it is now your responsibility to monitor your behavior and to shame yourself.

I wonder who makes up all the rules that we feel we must abide by? And more concerning is what makes their version correct? Why are ‘they’ able to set standards of appropriate behavior, including the ones that regulate shame?

I looked up the dictionary definitions for shame, which can be used as a noun or a verb. The definitions split off in several directions, so I looked a little further and came across this.

“Shame can be defined as a feeling of embarrassment or humiliation that arises in relation to the perception of having done something dishonorable, immoral, or improper.”

Again, according to whom?

Is it not possible that you know when you’ve done something that hurt another and after thinking about, want to apologize and make amends? Are we not all capable of this on our own without having to suffer being shamed?

I believe shame is a weapon.

It is used by people to control others, to shape their responses and behavior and to force them to comply with arbitrary standards. I also believe it is used by weak people whose goals is to make themselves feel more powerful.

The purpose for shame is domination.

I believe there is great value in listening carefully to what others say, but also to what they do. Actions and words are very powerful. Paying attention provides opportunities to evaluate our own and other’s choices.

If we believe we have acted in a way that has created problems or hurt others, we can take corrective actions. That is up to us.

I don’t believe anyone ever has the right to hand another a dose of shame. And I believe we all have the right to reject it if it is given to us. Not accepting shame is a powerful tool in protecting your feelings from those who seek to control or dominate you.

I believe we all know the right course of action for ourselves and always have the ability to ask for help and guidance, when we don’t.

Trust

I’ve struggled with the whole idea of trust. Have you?

Partly it’s the concept. There are a lot of implied ideas involved but not a lot of agreement.

When you trust someone else, how open are you? Perhaps at first your trust is rewarded, however, at times you may end up disappointed with others because they break your trust, leaving you guarded for the future.

Maybe you ask yourself, was there an agreement or did you presuppose others were innately trustworthy?

And then there is the question of whether you trust yourself. Based on what I know about me, I wonder if I am as trustworthy as I think I am. Certainly I’ve let myself down on many occasions, but does that make me untrustworthy?

I feel I need to ask myself another important question to help get my bearings. What am I basing my sense of trust on? Is it evaluated solely on the outcomes I experience?

Or is it as simple as, if I don’t get my way, my trust is broken?

Clearly there is confusion here for me.

No doubt there are very intelligent and keenly insightful people who could share much about trust with me, but if you’ve read my posts before, you’ll know where I’m going for my answers. Yes, to Lia, a part of the way I see god (a name I have, in this case, for a decidedly feminine voice of god, which stands for ‘love in action’).

When I asked for clarity, this is what Lia said.

“Do you trust the universe?”

I responded, “I’d have to say the answer is ‘no’, based on how I’m interacting with the world”. I asked, “What can I do about it? How can I relax and allow the flow to carry me?”

Lia’s voice was smooth and calm as she spoke, “Trust is a big word and concept, BUT it isn’t what you think. Your version goes something like this”. All will be well, if I believe properly, rely and trust that the universe (divine, god) has my back, which means things will turn out essentially the way I want them too or I’ll see clearly that what is happening serves me.

“Does that sound accurate to you?”, she asked.

I said, “Pretty much, yes” and added, “so what is trust, if not that?”

There was a moment’s hesitation, as if to underscore the importance of her next words. “It is the belief that nothing matters, as it relates to the observable outcomes.”

I felt that would require more explanation for me to understand and said so.

Lia told me this, “Your version of trust tries to tie together your desired outcome with my actions, so that you experience what you say you want.” Then she added, “Trust (in me) means that, in advance of any outcome(s), you believe all will be well. Nothing specific is preplanned, but ALL outcomes exist. If you altered your belief system to accept that ALL outcomes serve you, you would not need one specific outcome to occur, you would be satisfied with what showed up. Knowing that whatever shows up will/does serve you (and others) is trust.”

I knew she had more to say, and I would have to come back to this to truly understand her message to me.

Lia continued, “Placing or demanding any specific outcome(s) represents a lack of trust and you will feel this across your essence- physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and ego. Part of the reason you will feel this is that the feeling is a message to/for you, a directional arrow pointing the way to living a peaceful, happy, joy-filled life.”

“Your feelings are giving you cues to follow. Those of discomfort tell you to move in another direction and those of pleasure and comfort encourage you to continue on your path.”

“If you don’t find or observe any cues, try something different, pay attention and move accordingly, trusting your insight to guide your way.”

“All of that is a lot to think about,” I stated.

“Yes,” she said, encouraging me to feel that I could return to this conversation any time I desired.

I’m sure I will. I need to feel more trusting in my life.

Helpless

Have you ever encountered a situation where you felt absolutely helpless?

I have.

As a matter of fact, I’m feeling that way right now with my mom in the hospital, having fallen two days ago. Yesterday she had a bad reaction to a medication and when I saw her, I was shocked. Very little about her seemed normal to me and the disparity left me reeling. I tried to make sense of things.

I spoke with her doctor and nurses, looking for some reassurances. I received some but couldn’t reconcile what they said with what I was seeing.

My mind revolted.

I am used to being able to solve problems with and without others help. But, in this case, I felt ill equipped to do anything for my mom.

I’m not comfortable with this at all. It feels like the essence of helplessness to me.

And this feeling fully uncovered my need for control. I’ve become used to having at least some measure of control over my life and the things around me. And yet with this situation, I have none.

In my wisest moments I know this idea of control is a sham. At any given time, my expectations of being in charge can be shattered and reality can overcome me. I am not as helpless as a baby, but in certain situations, I feel like one.

It’s an arresting thought and one that creates deep side effects for me.

My mind struggles and my emotions are in turmoil and my body feels their dramatic effects. I wonder, where is my spirit in all of this?

Will it be a source of strength or just lie dormant?

I know I certainly need it, its healing, its centering, and its grounding wisdom. I need something within myself to hang on to, so that I don’t get swept away.

How do I reach for this, hold this?

I gently ask myself to sit back and breathe. No pattern, just breathe.

I close my eyes and allow the world to slip away and let breathing be enough.

I am all too aware I need help, not only help, but hope. More breathing.

As I breathe, I feel a little space open up inside. And within the space I feel an invitation.

Some inner wisdom comes to sit with me saying, “It’s okay to feel”. Another breath, “It’s okay to feel whatever you are feeling”. Another breath and more words of wisdom, “You are both weakness and strength. You slide along, experiencing it all, wholeness, and helplessness.”

Air moves in and out of me, following this wisdom.

“You don’t always have to be in charge or in control. It’s okay to let others have their turn.”

I’m feeling relaxation wash over me.

A realization takes hold, it’s okay to feel helpless, to be helpless, and like all other things, know that it will fade away and move beyond me.

I breathe this in and out. I can go on how

Spiritual Blueprints

Do you believe a blueprint exists for your life? A path forward that is already laid out? Or do you feel that everything that happens is random?

These are interesting questions to consider.

My father was an architect and dealt with blueprints his whole working career. For many years he had his own architectural firm in the town I grew up in. He eventually moved from a small set of rooms on a second floor that he rented to a two-story building that he owned. It was quite large, with a full basement and huge attic space.

I got to know every inch of the building because in the summers I worked there performing a number of different tasks. I cleaned, took care of the yard, did small repairs, helped with office work and whatever special jobs my dad needed.

The most challenging was when he decided, one incredibly hot summer, to have me move all his stored blueprints from the basement to the attic. He was concerned about the moisture degrading their quality and potentially needed them for future reference.

It turns out there were hundreds of them, and they all needed to travel up three flights of stairs and be organized and stored in the attic. That may not sound like much, but consider I’d start out each trip in the 60-degree basement and end it in the 110-degree attic. Those 50-degree changes, done over and over, were exhausting and I ended up drinking an unbelievable amount of water just to stay hydrated.

I remember having to take quite a few breaks. On one of them, I pulled out and unrolled one of the blueprints to see what I was transporting.

If you are unfamiliar with blueprints, they are large sheets of blue paper that show various levels of detail on different pages and are used by contractors to build structures. They’re meant to be unrolled on a flat surface and often are organized to display different levels of what is being built and are extremely detailed.

On several occasions my dad would explain them to me and even let me do some basic drafting, a simple version of a blueprint. I found them fascinating, but not enough to follow in his footsteps, which fortunately, was okay with him.

Recently, I was involved in cleaning out my mom and dad’s house to get it ready to sell and came across some of his blueprints.

Something registered with me.

According to my personal spiritual beliefs, each of us comes here to earth from heaven with our own spiritual blueprints. They are all unique and serve as a guide for our lives. We are not bound by them because we have free will, but they rest in the background and provide wisdom and direction, much like the mechanical blueprints architects create.

So how do you access your spiritual blueprint? Where can you unroll it and lay it flat to look at?

I first became aware of mine during one of my conversations with god. god made a reference to it, saying that each human is made up of physical, emotional, intellectual, ego and spiritual components. They intertwine, but the spiritual component is the only one that knows their spiritual blueprint.

I wanted to know how the rest of me could be let in on this.

What I discovered was that every quiet contemplative state allowed some access. So, when I sit and breath, stilling myself, I open the door to it. When I slow down and wait patiently and give my intuition a chance to come to the surface, I open the door. When I meditate, going deeply within, finding harmony and calmness, I open the door. These are peaceful, wonderful practices to open to the wisdom available in a spiritual blueprint.

And there is one more.

When I can’t seem to settle myself and find the open door, I ask for help, promising to pay attention. I ask god to help me find a stillness where I can listen carefully. I ask god to unroll my spiritual blueprint and help me see it clearly.

I’ve seen it many times and am always grateful for the insight it provides. I believe you can see yours too and hope that in your stillness it comes through your open door.